i decided to re-read The World As I Found It before sending it Finnwards. It’s even better than i remembered. Two samples from the first 31 pages, the first from a letter Wittgenstein writes to his father, said father having gravely & sarcastically disapproved of his abandoning engineering for logic:

First, you vastly exaggerate my love of Schopenhauer and degrade my love of Goethe. You make other erroneous assumptions. Halley’s Comet appeared two years ago. It is probable that it will return in 74 years, but it is not a matter of logic to assume so; it is only an expression of statistical belief.

I make this point in reference to your comments on Goethe. Do not wait for him, nor Schiller nor Beethoven. If Goethe were to return with the comet, we would not recognise him because we expect him in the guise of the last coming. In fact, as with all artists or thinkers, he comes – if he comes at all – as a wolf in wolf’s clothing, obstinate and himself, different than expected, wrong.

And, kite-flying on the moors:

In the rising wind, spears of sharp sea grass were whirring like scissors. Clouds covered the sea and waves battered the rocks, spurting up in steamy plumes as the last birds beat back to shore. Across the sky, like a cornea filling with blood, came a fearful darkening. The piano wire was humming, and ever so faintly he was trembling, thinking what a thing it was to dread one’s own self – to see the self as enemy or other, not as companion, guide, sanctuary.

Why is the will so powerless to stop the thing that life has set in motion? he wondered. Did he suppose that if he were to find value, some gloss of value might rub off on him ? In all the sea there is a single pearl. In all the world there is a single, mirroring form that binds and reflects all other things. Desire was his crime, he saw. His father was right: surely, it was vain and sinful to want this thing. Surely, for this presumption punishment awaited. The ocean need not be deep for one to drown, nor need the grapes be high to be just past reach and hence all the sweeter. The dream is incomparably stronger than the dreamer.

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