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Quotes

Quote #4

I want to escape my freedom without reaching the conclusion like so many others: that existence is only for fools and lunatics: for it would seem that to exist is illogical. (1.37)

This kind of thinking, called absurdism, comes out of existentialist philosophy. Both schools of thought essentially propose that it's impossible to try to find meaning in life. And Macabéa's existence does seem meaningless: after living a life of hardship and desolation, she dies without realizing any of the new hopes she had just embraced. Absurd—or just tragic?

Quote #5

It isn't necessary to have faith in anyone or in anything—it is enough to have faith. (3.53)

If existentialism and absurdism say that we'll never actually find any value in life, then maybe faith is the only answer after all. You can't find any meaning through logic and reason, so you just have to take it on faith that there is a point, after all.

Quote #6

God belongs to those who succeed a pinning Him down. God appears in a moment of distraction. She asked no questions. She divined that there were no answers. Was she foolish enough to ask? Only to get a blunt no in reply? Perhaps she thought about this futile question so that no one could ever accuse her one day of never having asked. Not knowing who to turn to, she appeared to have answered her own question: it is so because it is so. Could there be some other answer? (3.55)

While we don't directly get this so-called foolish question, we do get the answer: "it is so because it is so." Gee, it seems like there's really only one question she could have been asked: "Why is it so?" Not much of an answer, if you ask us.

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