Tuesday, December 04, 2007

6.4311 Death is not an event in life. One does not live through death.

If one understands eternity not as an endless period of time but as timelessness, then he who lives in the present lives eternally.

Our life is just as endless as our field of vision is limitless.

I.e., not really, but in some, not very comforting, sense. I think nonsensical ideas are being deflated here, but quite possibly ones to which Wittgenstein felt very drawn. Hence the ethical, practical nature of the ironic debunking of treasured idols. The irony here is not sarcasm but a pretty much essential means to the kind of goal Wittgenstein is aiming at. He must say nothing false, but speak only truth and nonsense. The nonsense is revealed as nonsense by being pushed through to its painful conclusion. This involves a kind of inversion, as does irony. Wittgenstein suggested “without limit” instead of “limitless,” but only on the grounds that “limitless” is not normal English. I think it is though, so I have left it in. It is a more literal translation of the German grenzenlos.

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