Entirely in agreement with Salieri when he rails against God for having given humanity the gift of Mozart's divine music, for the sole purpose of making us look ridiculous and plunging us into despair. Salieri sets himself up as Man's champion against divine injustice. It is the same problem as that of the Grand Inquisitor in the Brothers Karamazov. When Christ returns to earth he says to him: 'We manage humanity for its greatest happiness. It has paid for this with its mediocrity. Don't come disturbing this fragile balance with insane promises. ' And he condemns Christ to death once again.
Salieri is not mean-spirited: it took pride, not to become jealous of Mozart, but to challenge God and ask: 'Tell it to me plainly, why am I not Mozart?' For God mocked us by throwing Mozart among us in the guise of a vulgar being, who did not even bear the exceptional marks of grace. God is toying with us, and that is unbearable. Mozart must be destroyed. All that challenges God is noble in spirit and superior to gaping, unconditional admiration of His works.
We will not have the same problem with Changeux's Neuronal Man, emerging on the horizon like Nietzsche's Last Man, with his cortical and synaptic flatness. Farewell Mozart, farewell Salieri, no more grace, but no more challenges either, such is the solution offered by modern science to the insoluble despair of the difference between men.
Signs, signs? Is that all you have to say? People act and people dream, they speak or they don't - none of that is unreal. Shut up and watch. See the philosophical beauty of these closing years of the century, the stars in the sky falling lower as the fateful date approaches, and the interactive horizon of couples in love - all this is beyond doubt, and it moves me to tears . . . The age, the coming age is like a metropolis deserted by its population, cut off from its sources of energy. Are you going to say that, are you going to go on with these twilight rantings? Every century throws the reality principle into question as it closes, but it's over today, finished, done. Everybody works these days.
Narrative and moral passions, the philosophical animal spirits, are literally blocking the electronic animal spirits, a thousand times more lively and insignificant. Videos and advertisements, credits, news reports and sports flashes, Dallas, that's television, all that transfers easily, with the minimum of energy, on ephemeral film. But pure television, like pure painting or pure speed, is hard to bear.