MY COMMONPLACE BOOK: (a diary of excerpts copied from printed books, with comments added by the reader.)
He who despairs because of the news is a coward, but he who sees hope in the human condition is mad. Albert Camus, 1943, occupied France
Camus wrote that sentence in his journal as he began dangerous underground work in France against the occupying Nazis. Under these conditions, his terse statement sounds like one of those dark jokes one makes in order to ease tension when engaged in activities that may bring capture, torture, and death at any moment.
Today, in more “ordinary” times, this statement seems merely an echo of our passing thoughts as we scan the daily news in print or on TV. Do we ever pat ourselves on the back for maintaining this heroic balancing act?
We should. Happy Holidays.
(Send the Berkeley Daily Planet a page from your own Commonplace Book)