Sunday, June 10, 2012

Last Friday + Maugham's Agnosticism

Once again last Friday, I finished a three-week interpretation assignment. This time, a large part of my mind was taken up for the guy who spoke the Japanese TV language, a kind I hate. But I also think if his language, characterised by one-word expressions and fragmentary sentences, might not be reflecting his worries that were likely to be caused by his being in an alien land. He didn’t choose to come. His company did. His concerned face will remain with me.
After dinner with the three who came, I went to my usual bar with one of them whose flight was to take off well after midnight. After a while there, I found the man about whom I have written a few times already taken the seat next to me. I didn’t notice when he came in. I asked him about his new job which not surprisingly didn’t interest me. When I heard him whisper to himself, “happy to see him,” I began preparing to leave the place. I’m convinced he loves me.
We still had a few hours. So we, leaving the man behind, moved on to another, and more expensive, place. I had the courtesy to ask him if he wanted to come along and he said No. Unexpectedly she was there. She who I met three weeks previously and she with whom I had nice talk. I’m convinced she is interested in me. The feeling is mutual. Now she got my business card, but I don’t have her contact number.

In the final part of The Summing Up, Somerset Maugham writes about philosophy and then religion. “In religion above all things the only thing of use is an objective truth. The only God that is of use is a being who is personal, supreme and good, and whose existence is as certain as that two and two make four. I cannot penetrate the mystery. I remain an agnostic, and the practical outcome of agnosticism is that you act as though God did not exist.” (p. 268)

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