Saramago is dead… Long live Saramago… Long live this sweet sweet love of life…

If you can see, look.

If you can look, observe.

FROM THE Book of Exhortations.

Blindness

The moral conscience that so many thoughtless people have offended against and many more have rejected, is something that exists and has always existed. It was not an invention of the philosophers of the Quartenary, when the soul was little more than a muddled proposition. With the passing of time, as well as then social evolution and genetic exchange, we ended up putting our conscience in the colour of blood and in the salt of tears, and, as if that were not enough, we made our eyes into a kind of mirror turned inwards, with the result that they often show without reserve what we are verbally trying to deny. Add to this general observation, the particular circumstance that in simple spirits, the remorse caused by committing some evil act often becomes confused with ancestral fears of every kind, and the result will be that the punishment of the prevaricator ends up being, without mercy or pity, twice what he deserved.

Blindness

…we’re so remote from the world that any day now, we shall no longer know who we are, or even remember our names, and besides, what use would names be to us, no dog recognises another dog or knows the others by the names they have been given, a dog is identified by its scent and that is how it identifies others, here we are like another breed of dogs, we know each other’s bark or speech, as for the rest, features, colour of eyes or hair, they are of no importance, it is as if they did not exist, I can still see but for how long.

Blindness

Doctor’s wife.

A blind man is sacred, you don’t steal from a blind man.

Blindness

Car thief.

…anyone who gets up early by inclination or has been forced to rise early out of necessity finds it intolerable that others should go on sleeping soundly, and with good reason in the case to which we are referring, for there is a marked difference between a blind person who is sleeping and a blind person who has opened his eyes to no purpose.

Blindness

…just as well that we are still capable of weeping, tears are often our salvation, there are times when we would die if we did not weep…

Blindness

Doctor’s wife.

As the saying goes, in the country of the blind, the one-eyed man is king, Forget about sayings, But this is not the same, Here not even the cross-eyed would be saved…

Blindness

Recalling the H. G. Wells saying.

Attention, attention, the internees may come and collect their food, but be careful, if anyone gets too close to the gate they will receive a preliminary warning, and unless they turn back immediately, the second warning will be a bullet.

Blindness

Voice over loudspeaker in mental asylum.

Perhaps only in a world of the blind will things be what they truly are.

Blindness

The Doctor.

…a longing to curl up inside herself, her eyes, especially her eyes, turned inwards, more, more, more, until they could reach and observe inside her own brain, there where the difference between seeing and not seeing is invisible to the naked eye. Slowly, ever more slowly, dragging her body, she retraced her footsteps to the place where she belonged…

Blindness

Doctor’s wife.

…for the authorities had no humanitarian scruples when rounding up the blind and confining them here, they even stated that the law once made is the same for everyone and that democracy is incompatible with preferential treatment.

Blindness

…for dignity has no price, that when someone starts making small concessions, in the end, life loses all meaning.

Blindness

Say to a blind man, you’re free, open the door that was separating him from the world, Go, you are free, we tell him once more, and he does not go, he has remained motionless there in the middle of the road, he and the others, they are terrified, they do not know where to go, the fact is that there is no comparison between living in a rational labyrinth, which is, by definition, a mental asylum and venturing forth, without a guiding hand or a dog-leash, into the demented labyrinth of the city, where memory will serve no purpose, for it will merely be able to recall the images of places but not the paths whereby we might get there.

Blindness

…just like everything else in life, let time take its course and it will find a solution.

Blindness

There’s no difference between inside and outside, between here and there, between the many and the few, between what we’re living through and what we shall have to live through…this must be what it means to be a ghost, being certain that life exists, because your four senses say so, and yet unable to see it…

Blindness

…you do not know, you cannot know, what it means to have eyes in a world in which everyone else is blind, I am not a queen, no, I am simply the one who was born to see this horror, you can feel it, I both feel and see it…

Blindness

Doctor’s wife, the only person who retains her sight through blindness epidemic, to her blind companions.

Inside us there is something that has no name, that something is what we are.

Blindness

Blind people do not need a name, I am my voice, nothing else matters…

Blindness

It is a great truth that says that the worst blind person was the one who did not want to see…

Blindness

On their way to the home of the girl with dark glasses, they crossed a large square with groups of blind people who were listening to speeches from other blind people, at first sight, neither one nor the other group seemed blind, the speakers turned their heads excitedly towards their listeners, the listeners turned their heads attentively to the speakers. They were proclaiming the end of the world, redemption through penitence, the visions of the seventh day, the advent of the angel, cosmic collisions, the death of the sun, the tribal spirit, the sap of the mandrake, tiger ointment, the virtue of the sign, the discipline of the wind, the perfume of the moon, the revindication of darkness, the power of exorcism, the sign of the heel, the crucifixion of the rose, the purity of the lymph, the blood of the black cat, the sleep of the shadow, the rising of the seas, the logic of anthropopagy, painless castration, divine tattoos, voluntary blindness, convex thoughts, or concave, or horizontal or vertical, or sloping, or concentrated, or dispersed, or fleeting, the weakening of the vocal cords, the death of the word, Here nobody is speaking of organisation, said the doctor’s wife, Perhaps organisation is in another square, he replied.

Blindness

The difficult thing isn’t living with other people, it’s understanding them.

Blindness

The Doctor.

…all the images in the church had their eyes covered, statues with a white cloth tied around the head, paintings with the thick brushstroke of white paint… that priest must have committed the worst sacrilege of all times and all religions, the fairest and most radically human, coming here to declare that, ultimately, God does not deserve to see.

Blindness

I don’t think we did go blind, I think we are blind, Blind but seeing, Blind people who can see, but do not see.

Blindness

Blindness, an allegorical novel about a mysterious epidemic of blindness that paralyzes a major city, was written by Portuguese writer Jose Saramago and published in 1995. Born on November 16, 1922, Saramago was awarded the Nobel Prize for literature in 1998. He died on June 18, 2010.

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