Miquel Bauçà

A selection of entries from El Canvi
Bauçà - el canvi11
I love cat11111
Catalonia a self portrait
Bauçà - rue marsala
El canvi, Barcelone, Empúries, 1998.

El Canvi is a dictionnary is which the author describes and defines chosen words. Transcript offers a selection of these below.


1 Anguish [détresse]
I feel the sting of anguish simply because of the revelation or perception of Being, not because of the perception of the nothingness of human existence ...
Anguish [détresse]: 'According to Kierkegaard, a mood, not determined by anything in particular, characteristic of a human, which reveals the essence of his being to him: the nothingness of human existence, due to its finite nature, before the infinite nature of God'.

My experience has not been quite the same. I feel the sting of anguish simply because of the revelation or perception of the Being, not because of the perception of the nothingness of human existence: - the latter is an item of knowledge as banal and obvious as knowing the name of the stations on a given metro line before the infinite nature of God. The infinite nature of God doesn't bother me one bit. It would be the worse for Him, if it did. It is a contradiction, to consider such things, because to compare the finite with the infinite, means that you are saying that human existence is not as insignificant as all that. The feeling of vast magnitudes only exists when one is a child or a pre-pubescent. Afterwards, it disappears. I do not believe in God for one elementary reason: if I believed in Him my sense of asphyxia not of finiteness would increase, which is something I cannot let happen. I feel a kind of claustrophobia I have forever engraved within me the childhood experience of going into a cave and not knowing how to get out with respect to relationships of dependence, whatever they might be and whatever form they might take. It is a pity that we do not have an indicator of the degree of anguish which afflicts us, which we reach, with the aim of putting a definite limit to it. Now we don't know how far we can go. But, of course, if we knew, maybe then we would not experience any anguish, most likely. It is impossible to make a comprehensive and well-classified list of states of détresse, typified by popular wisdom or by other forms of wisdom. Nor even of states of euphoria, even though these are far less prolific.

In a strictly medical (medic) sense, I would say that anguish is like an alarm which goes off not because of a danger or a supposed danger, but is rather a warning that we have taken a detour off the correct path. A condemned man, if he is on the correct path, walks, satisfied, along the corridor to the scaffold. The best known case of this is Jesus, who, on the way to Calvary, spoke at leisure with the crowd who had gone to see him. If he felt a moment of anguish once he was nailed up, this is due to some kind of error that he made immediately before or during the walk.




2 America
'We ought to hate the Americans because they sponsored the Dictatorship. But they had to, because London ordered them to.'
America: It generates three errors, which may be perceived without any effort: 1: the way non-Americans interpret it; 2: the vision the English have of it; 3: the idea that the Americans themselves have of it.

What really attracts us about America is not its power: it is the cleanliness, which is given off by the objects they invent, produce and use there: from a skyscraper to a cowshed. This inevitably leads one to believe that morally, too, they are clean and transparent, and, to put it better, accessible. To put it another way: the message is cleanliness. It seems that they are always ready to explain how they have done this, the procedure, which is the first thing that other tribes hide away and will never tell you about. The latter make themselves impenetrable and cannot export their products, because these will always appear suspicious. The Chinese are the supreme representatives of this. The history of the secret of the manufacture of silk is not altogether insignificant.

The important thing is simply that America exists, not for any particular reason, not because of the Americans or what they do. If America is rich and powerful, this is a secondary aspect, and inevitably inevitable. Cretins the world over, even stupid Americans, think that this is what is really important, but the value of America is nothing to do with its power or development: it is based on the fact that America is a metaphysical event of such magnitude that it is even quite observable, unlike other metaphysical events which can only be grasped by poets.

I will never go there. That would be like profaning the most sacred thing. If I had to flee once more from our enemies, I would install myself in the Sahara. I know in which place.

The other States and tribes could vanish and it would be a tiny episode, with no more importance than a cyclone.

We ought to hate the Americans because they sponsored the Dictatorship. But they had to, because London ordered them to. The explanation has nothing to do with the Soviet Union. I view such filial love with tenderness, and so I forgive them. The Dictatorship was a revenge or a sign of disdain on the part of the English that went against our enemies, not against us.

Possible a secondary aspect of my passion for America has to do with the revenge implied by the thought that it was precisely our enemies who discovered their Continent.

I know that it will be hard for me to make myself understood, but America is not movies or caterpillars or even computers.

A disadvantage of the real existence of America is that it does not permit the pleasure of recreating, discovering, obvious things as we wish. I remember with what pleasure I read û in special and de luxe editions things such as the fact that 'form and content' go together like a horse and carriage or that the material of which a thing is made determines its form... At that time such things were sweet as honey, because I did not know that in America they were public knowledge, just like so many other things which were public knowledge. Under the delirium of Franco's rule, they were like milestones that could only be reached after a sweaty effort; magnificent discoveries; secrets with a high strategic value.






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