November 29th, 2010 / 12:43 pm

Welcome to Monday

Make no mistake: this man is doing nothing.

After a weekend of extreme feats of laziness, I came across this excerpt of a letter from Rilke to Rodin, by way of Geoff Dyer’s engrossing book, Our of Sheer Rage:

“I have often asked myself whether those days on which we are forced to be indolent are not just the ones we pass in profoundest activity? Whether all our doing, when it comes later, is not only the last reverberation of a great movement which takes place in us on those days of inaction…”

Ah! So my idle time wasn’t wasted, but necessary to allow eventual brilliance to percolate. Thanks, Rilke!


  1. Steve Mitchelmore

      “In times when we thought ourselves indolent, we have afterwards discovered, that much was accomplished, and much was begun in us.”

      Emerson in “Experience”.

  2. Marian May Kaufman

      What a comforting post.

  3. deadgod

      I think the gist of what Rilke is saying is the reference to “those days on which we are forced to be indolent”.

      He’s not referring to sloth – which, maybe, he understands to be neither constructive nor virtuous – ; he’s referring to imprisonment, boundary, having been captured – by, say, illness, or bureaucratic inefficiency, or employment compulsorily empty of stimulation, or (osmotically) by a warm summer’s afternoon, or, of course, by ‘security’.

      He’s referring to special – intensified – cases of the imagination’s persistent restlessness in its cages of meat and office. He’s making, imaginatively, of those cages, enablements.

      Is this way of thinking really an affirmation?

  4. jereme_dean

      i thought he was speaking about blue balls.

  5. deadgod

      This “thought” is an example of projection, jereme.

  6. jereme_dean

      My balls remain drained these days. Not a projection.