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On E. M. Cioran's Tears and Saints

           





                                  
Perhaps saints cannot be known as they indeed are invisible by virtue of their holiness; they also cannot "return" by virtue of their deaths from the unholy world. But through our tears we experience what it is to be like saints who have seen the world and have lived it, consequently tried to but failed to understand it, and then gave it up in order to reclaim the lost Paradise that we who are not saints only weep about without knowing why.



Our tears, perhaps, are the invitations of the saints, the traces they have left since they can no longer show themselves and thus are totally Other already. Tears are the gifts they have left with  us who have not been able to renounce our lives because we have been so happy with this world. But this world will never be enough--this is why the saints' eyes are depicted half-closed in paintings, as if to hide their tears, and they usually look down or up, avoiding the horizon of the world which can only bring sorrow. And as Cioran says in a line which leaves me in fear in trembling, "only tears will be weighed at the Last Judgment."



In response to a friend

                   

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