Bruennhilde: Wotan's/Siegfried's unconscious Part B-9

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Bruennhilde: Wotan's/Siegfried's unconscious Part B-9

Post by alberich00 » Sat Jan 28, 2017 11:36 am

[P. 246] {FEUER} {SCHOP} “Hear my creed: Music can never and in no possible alliance cease to be the highest, the redeeming art. It is of her nature, that what all the other arts but hint at, through her and in her becomes the most undoubtable of certainties, the most direct and definite of truths. Look at the very coarsest dance, listen to the vilest doggerel: its Music (if only she has taken it seriously, and not intentionally caricatured it) ennobles even that; for just by reason of her own peculiar earnestness, she is of so chaste and wonderful a nature that she transfigures everything she touches. But it is equally manifest, equally sure, that Music will only let herself be seen in forms erst borrowed from an aspect or utterance of Life, which, originally strangers to Music, obtain through her their deepest meaning as if through revelation of the [P. 247] music latent in them. Nothing is less absolute (as to its appearance in Life, of course) than Music, and the champions of an Absolute Music evidently don’t know what they’re talking about; to utterly confound them, one would only have to bid them show us a music without the form which it has borrowed from either bodily motion or spoken verse (as regards the causal connexion).” [650W-{2/57} On Liszt’s Symphonic Poems: PW Vol. III, p. 246-247]

[P. 247] “I ask now, whether March or Dance, with all the mental pictures of those acts, can supply a worthier motive of Form than, for instance, a mental picture (Vorstellung) of the main and characteristic features in the deeds and sufferings of an Orpheus, a Prometheus, and so forth?” [651W-{2/57} On Liszt’s Symphonic Poems: PW Vol. III, p. 247]

[P. 383] {FEUER} “He is a fool who would seek to win the world and a feeling of peace from outside himself! (…) Only inside, within us, deep down does salvation dwell!“ [655W-{4/7/58}Letter to Mathilde Wesendonck: SLRW, p. 383]

[P. 384] {FEUER} “What increasingly attracts me to great poets is what they conceal by their silence rather than what they express, indeed, it is almost more from a poet’s silence than from what he says that I learn to acknowledge his greatness: and it is this that makes Calderon so great and so precious to me. What makes me love music with such inexpressible joy is that it conceals [P. 385] everything, while expressing what is least imaginable: it is thus, strictly speaking, the only true art, the other arts being merely adjuncts. What I concealed that evening I revealed to the assembled guests in loud and sonorous tones by means of my Beethoven … .” [656W-{4/12/58}Letter to Carolyne Sayn-Wittgenstein: SLRW, p. 384-385]

[P. 152] {FEUER} “I had been distressingly but more or less decidedly disengaging myself from the world; everything in me had turned to negation and rejection; even my artistic creativeness was distressing to me, for it was longing with an insatiable longing to replace that negation, that rejection, by something affirmative and positive, the marriage of myself to myself (‘sich-mir-vermaehlende’).” [657W-{9/18/58}Letter to Mathilde Wesendonck: Quoted by Robert Donington in his Wagner’s ‘Ring’ and its Symbols; p. 152]

[P. 46] {anti-FEUER} {SCHOP} “… all around me is quite doleful; what has any manner of significance, helpless and suffering: and only the insignificant can thoroughly enjoy existence. Yet what recks Nature of it all? She goes her blind way, intent on nothing but the race: i.e., to live anew and anew, commence ever again: spread, spread – utmost spread; the individual, on whom she loads all burdens of existence, is naught to her but a grain of sand in this spread of the species; a grain she can replace at any moment, if she only gives an extra twist to the race, a thousand- and a million-fold! Oh, I can’t stand hearing anyone appeal to Nature: with finer minds ‘tis finely meant, but for that very reason something else is meant thereby; for Nature is heartless and devoid of feeling, and every egoist, ay, every monster, can appeal to her example with more cause and warranty than the man of feeling. (…) Yet it is just like everything in Nature: for the individual she holds misery, death and despair, in readiness, and leaves him to lift himself above them by his highest effort of resignation: she cannot prevent that succeeding, but looks on in amazement, and says perhaps: ‘Is that what I really willed?’ “ [658W-{9/30/58}Letter to Mathilde Wesendonck: RWLMW, p. 46]

[P. 52] {anti-FEUER} “ … by the nature of things, … superlative friendship can be nothing but an ideal; whereas Nature, that hoary old sinner and egoist, with the best of will – if she could [P. 53] possibly have it – can do no else than deem herself the whole exclusive world in every individual, and merely acknowledge the other individual so far as it flatters this illusion of Self. ‘Tis so, and yet, one holds on! God, what a worth it must have, the thing for whose sake one holds on, with such a knowledge!“ [661W-{10/3/58}Letter to Mathilde Wesendonck: RWLMW, p. 52-53]

[P. 425] {FEUER} “My child, the glorious Buddha was no doubt right when he strictly excluded art. Is there anyone who feels more clearly than I that it is this unhappy art that everlastingly restores me to life’s torment and all the contradictions of [P. 426] existence? If I did not have this wondrous gift of an over-predominant visual imagination, I could follow my heart’s instinctive urge, in accordance with my own clear-eyed insight, -- and become a saint; and as a saint I could say to you: come here, leave behind you all that holds you back, burst the bonds of nature: in return for this I will show you the road to salvation! – Then we should be free: Ananda and Savitri!” [663W-{10/5/58}Letter to Mathilde Wesendonck: SLRW, p. 425-426]

[P. 432] {FEUER} {anti-SCHOP} “During recent weeks I have been slowly rereading Schopenhauer’s principal work, and this time it has inspired me, quite extraordinarily, to expand and – in certain details – even to correct his system. The subject is uncommonly important, and it must, I think, have been reserved for a man of my own particular nature, at this particular period of his life, to gain insights here of a kind that could never have disclosed themselves to anyone else. It is a question, you see, of pointing out the path to salvation, which has not been recognized by any philosopher, and especially not by Sch., but which involves a total pacification of the will through love, and not through any abstract human love, but a love engendered on the basis of sexual love, i.e. the attraction between man and woman. (…) The presentation of this argument will take me very deep and very far: it involves a more detailed explanation of the state in which we become capable of recognizing ideas, and of genius in general, which I no longer conceive of as a state in which the intellect is divorced from the will, but rather as an intensification of the individual intellect to the point where it becomes the organ of perception of the genus or species, and thus of the will itself, which is the thing in itself; herein lies the only possible explanation for that marvellous and enthusiastic joy and ecstasy felt by any genius at the highest moments of perception, moments which Sch. seems scarcely to recognize, since he is able to find them only in a state of calm and in the silencing of the individual affects of the will. Entirely analogous to this view, however, I have succeeded in demonstrating beyond doubt that in love there lies the possibility of raising oneself about the individual impulse of the will to a point where total mastery over the latter is achieved, and the generic will becomes fully conscious of itself, a consciousness which, at this level, is necessarily synomymous with total pacification.” [664W-{12/1/58}Letter to Mathilde Wesendonck: SLRW, p. 432]

[P. 78] {FEUER} {anti-SCHOP} “In the long run I always hark back to my Schopenhauer, who has led me to the most remarkable trains of thought, as lately indicated, in amendment of some of his imperfections. The theme becomes more interesting to me every day, for it is a question here of explications such a I alone can give, since there never was another man who was poet and musician at once in my sense, and therefore to whom an insight into inner processes has become possible such as could be expected of no other.” [665W-{12/8/58}Letter to Mathilde Wesendonck: RWLMW, p. 78]

[P. 434] {FEUER} “A concept cannot cause suffering; but in music every concept turns into a feeling; it consumes and burns till it becomes a bright flame, and the new and wondrous light can laugh out loud!” [666W-{12/20/58}Letter to Mathilde Wesendonck: SLRW, p. 434]

[P. 441] {anti-FEUER} {SCHOP} “ … whereas the world gets by and is held together solely by dint of experience, the poet’s intuition precedes all experience and, on the basis of his own unique potentiality, comprehends what it is that gives all experience its significance and meaning. If you were a well-practised philosopher, I should refer you to the fact that what we have here is the best possible example of that same phenomenon which alone makes cognition possible, whereby the entire framework of space, time and causality in which the world is represented to us is prefigured in our brain as the latter’s most characteristic functions, so that these conditional qualities of all objects, namely their spatiality, temporality and causality, are already contained within our heads before we recognize these objects, since without them we should have no means of recognizing them at all.
{anti-FEUER} {SCHOP} But what is raised above space, time and causality, and what does not require these expedients for us to recognize it, in other words, what is unconditioned by finality, of which Schiller says so memorably that it is [P. 442] uniquely true because it has never existed; this is something that can never be grasped by any common philosophy, but is prefigured by the poet with that same prefiguredness that lies within him, conditioning all that he creates and enabling him to represent this something with infallible certainty, -- this something, I say, which is more definite and more certain than any other object of our cognition, in spite of the fact that it involves no property of the world as we apprehend it through experience.
{anti-FEUER} The common world, which is entirely subjected to the influence of experience forced upon it from without, and which can grasp nothing that has not been more or less physically and palpably suggested to it, can never understand the poet’s attitude towards the world of his own experience. [667W-{1/19/59}Letter to Mathilde Wesendonck: SLRW, p. 441-442]

[P. 125] {FEUER} “There’s no help for it; one must be able to avow all to oneself, the whole misery of the world and existence, fully and entirely to gain the power to taste the only thing that lifts above it.
That is my whole philosophy, in face of those … [P. 126] who labour to make Life endurable by declining to admit its badness, or wilfully shutting their eyes to it.” [668W-{4/26/59}Letter to Mathilde Wesendonck: RWLMW, p. 125-126]

[P. 486] {FEUER} “Everything is alien to me, and I often gaze around me, yearning for a glimpse of the land of nirvana. But nirvana quickly turns back into Tristan; you know the Buddhist theory of the origin of the world. A breath clouds the clear expanse of heaven:

[Note: Wagner places here musical notation for the opening notes of the
‘Tristan Prelude’]

It swells and grows denser, and finally the whole world stands before me again in all of its impenetrable solidity.” [673W-{3/3/60}Letter to Mathilde Wesendonck: SLRW, p. 486]

[P. 489] “One becomes all-powerful only by playing with the world.” [674W-{4/10/60}Letter to Mathilde Wesendonck: SLRW, p. 489]

[P. 499] {FEUER} Lohengrin affected me very deeply yesterday, and I cannot help thinking it the most tragic of all poems, since reconciliation is really to be found only if one casts a terribly wide-ranging glance at the world.
{FEUER} Only a profound acceptance of the doctrine of metempsychosis has been able to console me by revealing the point at which all things finally converge at the same level of redemption, after the various individual existences – which run alongside each other in time – have come together in a meaningful way outside time. According to the beautiful Buddhist doctrine, the spotless purity of Lohengrin is easily explicable in terms of his being the continuation of Parzival – who was the first to strive towards purity. Elsa, similarly, would reach the level of Lohengrin through being reborn. Thus my plan for the ‘Victors’ struck me as being the concluding section of Lohengrin. Here ‘Savitri’ (Elsa) entirely reaches the level of ‘Ananda’. In this way, all the terrible Tragedy of life would be attributable to our dislocation in time and space: but since time and space are merely our way of perceiving things, but otherwise have no reality, even the greatest tragic pain must be explicable to those who are truly clear-sighted as no more than an individual error: I believe it is so! And, in all truth, it is a question simply of what is pure and noble, something which, in itself, is painless. –
{FEUER} (…) Time and space – which, after all, bring nothing but torment and distress – then disappear for me!” [676W-{8/60} Letter to Mathilde Wesendonck: SLRW, p. 499]

[P. 500] {FEUER} “Did I not tell you once before that the fabulously wild messenger of the Grail is to be one and the same person as the enchantress of the second act. Since this dawned on me, almost everything else about the subject has become clear to me. This strangely horrifying creature who, slave-like, serves the Knights of the Grail with untiring eagerness, who carries out the most unheard-of tasks, and who lies in a corner waiting only until such time as she is given some unusual task to perform – and who at times disappears completely, no one knows how or where?
Then all at once we meet her again, fearfully tired, wretched, pale and an object of horror: but once again untiring in serving the Holy Grail with doglike devotion, while all the time revealing a secret contempt for its knights: her eye seems always to be seeking the right one, -- and she has already deceived herself once – but did not find him. But not even she herself knows what she is searching for: it is purely instinctive.
{FEUER} When Parzival, the foolish lad, arrives in the land, she cannot avert her eyes from him: strange are the things that must go on inside her; she does not know it, but she clings to him. He is appalled – but he, too, feels drawn to her: he understands nothing. (Here it is a question of the poet having to invent everything!) Only the manner of execution can say anything here! – But you can gain an idea of what I mean if you listen to the way that Bruennhilde listened to Wotan. – This woman suffers unspeakable restlessness and excitement: the old esquire had noticed this on previous occasions, each time that she had shortly afterwards disappeared. This time she is in the tensest possible state. What is going on inside her? Is she appalled at the thought of renewed flight, does she long to be freed from it? Does she hope – for an end to it all? What hopes does she have of Parzival? Clearly she attaches unprecedented importance to him? – But all is gloomy and vague: no knowledge, only instinct and dusky twilight? – Cowering in a corner, she witnesses Anfortas’s agonized scene.: she gazes with a strangely inquisitive look (sphinx-like) at Parzival. He, too, is – stupid, understands nothing, stares in amazement – says nothing. He is driven out. The messenger of the Grail [P. 501] sinks to the ground with a shriek; she then disappears. (She is forced to wander again.)
Now can you guess who this wonderfully enchanting woman is whom Parzival finds in the strange castle where his chivalrous spirit leads him? Guess what happens here, and how it all turns out.“ [677W-{8/60} Letter to Mathilde Wesendonck: SLRW, p. 500-501]

[P. 296] {FEUER} “If we may broadly denote the whole range of Nature as an evolutionary march from unconsciousness to consciousness, and if this march is shown the most conspicuously in the human individual, we may take its observation in the life of the Artist as one of the most interesting, because in him and his creations the World itself displays itself and comes to consciousness. But in the Artist, too, the bent to re-present is by its nature thoroughly unconscious, instinctive; and even where he needs deliberation (Besonnenheit), to shape the picture of his intuition to an objective work of art by aid of his own familiar technique, the decisive choice of his expressional means will not be settled by Reflection proper, but rather by an instinctive bent that makes out the very character of his specific gift.” [678W-{9/60}Music of the Future, PW Vol. III, p. 296]

[P. 302] {FEUER} “Whereas the Frenchman, for instance – confronted with a fully developed, entirely self-contained and congruent form, and yielding a willing obedience to its seemingly unalterable laws – feels himself committed to a perpetual reproduction of that form, and thus (in a higher sense) to a certain stagnation of his inner productivity; the German, recognising all the advantages of such an attitude, would perceive withal its serious mischiefs; its lack of freedom would not escape him, and there would open up the outlook of an ideal art-form, embracing each eternal truth of every single art-form, but liberated from the fetters of the accidental and untrue. The immeasurable importance of this art-form would then consist herein: purged of the cramping element of narrower nationality, it would be a universally understandable form, accessible to every nation. Though as regards Literature the diversity of European tongues presents an obstacle, yet in Music, that language understandable by all the world alike, there would be supplied the great conforming force, which, resolving the language of abstractions into that of feelings, would transmute the inmost secret of the artist’s thought (Anschauung) into a universal message … .” [679W-{9/60}Music of the Future, PW Vol. III, p. 302]

[P. 317] {FEUER} {SCHOP} In this Symphony [Beethoven’s] instruments speak a language whereof [P. 318] the world at no previous time had any knowledge: for here, with a hitherto unknown persistence, the purely-musical Expression enchains the hearer in an inconceivably varied mesh of nuances; rouses his inmost being, to a degree unreachable by any other art; and in all its changefulness reveals an ordering principle so free and bold, that we can but deem it more forcible than any logic, yet without the laws of logic entering into it in the slightest – nay, rather, the reasoning march of Thought, with its track of causes and effects, here finds no sort of foothold. So that this Symphony must positively appear to us a revelation from another world; and in truth it opens out a scheme (Zusammen-hang) of the world’s phenomena quite different from the ordinary logical scheme, and whereof one foremost thing is undeniable: -- that it thrusts home with the most over-whelming conviction, and guides our Feeling with such a sureness that the logic-mongering Reason is completely routed and disarmed thereby.” [681W-{9/60}Music of the Future, PW Vol. III, p. 317-318]

[P. 319] {FEUER} Poetry will lightly find the path thereto, and perceive her final ascension into Music to be her own, her inmost longing, so soon as she grows aware of a need in Music, herself, which Poetry alone can still. {FEUER} {SCHOP} To explain this need, let us first attest that ineradicable attribute of all human apperception which spurs it to find out the laws of [P. 320] Causality, and in presence of every impressive phenomenon to ask itself instinctively the question ‘Why?’ Even the hearing of a Symphonic tone-piece does not entirely silence this question; rather, since it cannot give the answer, it brings the hearer’s inductive faculty into a confusion which not only is liable to disquiet him, but also becomes the ground of a totally false judgment. To answer this disturbing, and yet so irremissible question, so that in a manner of speaking it is circumvented from the first, can only be the poet’s work. But it can succeed in the hands of none but that poet who is fully alive to Music’s tendence and exhaustless faculty of Expression, and therefore drafts his poem in such a fashion that it may penetrate the finest fibres of the musical tissue, and the spoken thought entirely dissolve into the feeling. Obviously, no other form of poetry can help us here, save that in which the poet no longer describes, but brings his subject into actual and convincing representment to the senses; and this sole form is Drama. Drama, at the moment of its actual scenic representation, arouses in the beholder such an intimate and instant interest in an action borrowed faithfully from life itself, at least in its possibilities, that man’s sympathetic Feeling already passes into that ecstatic state where it clean forgets the fateful question ‘Why?’, and willingly yields itself, in utmost excitation, to the guidance of those new laws whereby Music makes herself so wondrously intelligible and – in a profounder sense – supplies withal the only fitting answer to that ‘Why?’ “ [683W-{9/60}Music of the Future, PW Vol. III, p. 319-320]

[P. 328] {FEUER} “… I once for all forsook the realm of history, even in my choice of stuff, for that of legend (Sage). (…)
{FEUER} (…) The legend, in whatever age or nation it occurs, has the merit of seizing nothing but the purely-human Content of that age and nation, and of giving forth that content in a form peculiar [P. 329] to itself, of sharpest outline, and therefore swiftly understandable. A ballad, a refrain of the Folk, suffices to acquaint us with this telling character in the twinkling of an eye. This legendary colouring, for the display of a purely-human event, has in particular the real advantage of uncommonly facilitating the task I assigned to the poet above, the task of silencing the question ‘Why?’ Just as through the characteristic scene, so also through the legendary tone, the mind is forthwith placed in the dream-like state wherein it presently shall come to full clairvoyance, and thus perceive a new coherence in the world’s phenomena: a coherence it could not detect with the waking eye of everyday, wherefore it had ever asked about the Why as though to conquer its abashedness in presence of the world’s incomprehensible, of that world which now becomes to it so clear and vividly intelligible. How Music is at last to fully round this quickening spell, you now will lightly comprehend.
{FEUER} But even for the poet’s manipulation of the stuff, its legendary character affords the essential advantage that whereas the simple sequence of the plot, so easily surveyable in all its outward bearings, renders it needless to linger on any outer explanation of its course, on the other hand the poem’s far largest space can be devoted to exhibiting the inner springs of action, those inner soul-motives which are finally and alone to stamp the Action as a ‘necessary’ one – and that through the sympathetic interest taken in these motives by our own inmost hearts.” [685W-{9/60}Music of the Future, PW Vol. III, p. 328-329]

[P. 330] {FEUER} “You perhaps will find the plot of ‘Tannhaeuser’ already far more markedly evolving from its inner motives. Here the decisive catastrophe proceeds without the least constraint from a lyric tournament of bards, in which no other power save the most hidden inner workings of the soul drives toward the decisive blow, and in such a manner that even this denouement’s form belongs purely to the lyric element.
{FEUER} The whole interest of ‘Lohengrin’ consists in an inner working within the heart of Elsa, involving every secret of the soul: the endurance of a spell of wondrous power for blessing, that fills her whole surrounding with the most persuasive sense of truth, hangs solely on her refraining from the question as to its Whence. Like a cry from the inmost want (Noth) of woman’s heart, this question struggles loose – and the spell has vanished. You may guess how singularly this tragic ‘Whence?’ concurs with that aforesaid theoretic ‘Why?’
{FEUER} I too … felt driven to this ‘Whence and Wherefore?’ and for long it banned me from the magic of my art. But my time of penance taught me to overcome the question. All doubt at last was taken from me, when I gave myself up to the ‘Tristan.’ (…) [P.331] The whole affecting Action comes about for reason only that the inmost soul demands it, and steps to light with the very shape foretokened in the inner shrine.” [686W-{9/60}Music of the Future, PW Vol. III, p. 330-331]

[P. 337] {FEUER} “Not a Programme, which rather prompts the troublous question ‘Why?’ than stills it – not a Programme, then, can speak the meaning of the Symphony; no, nothing but a stage-performance of the Dramatic Action itself.” [688W-{9/60}Music of the Future, PW Vol. III, p. 337]
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