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Appointments on Earth-Spirit and Eternal-Feminine in Goethes

and Fernando Pessoas Faust

I.

Summarizing the guidelines of Fernando Pessoas thought (for skeleton


structure purposes)

a) Fernando Pessoa hold a sensibility excessively on guard, because


followed by an intelligence excessively on guard; Thus he is, at the
same time, a less intuitive spirit, instead very abstract and deductive
one.
b) Pessoa never had a real wife, even never knew how to fall in love. He
only knew how to dream about love, notwithstanding having three
great passions: love to his family, love to Portugal and love to
humanity.
c) The practical life always appears to Fernando Pessoa as the less
convenient of the suicides, as the diary acts appear to him like a
condemnation. The world of life, the relation with others always
seemed to have a heavier atmosphere than his reveries.
d) The poet, assuming himself as belonging to the race of sailors and
creators of empires, considers that his existence is consisted in to
create and to dream. He was a creator of myths.
e) Fernando Pessoa conceives that only the reason was given as a guide
to him. The poet even stated that which that in me feels is already
thinking. In this regard, Pessoa rejects the Romanticism because
understand that the sentiments have to be thought, as he says
pretended.
f) Pessoa, since a pantheist that feels the wave, and the stars, and the
flowers, both feels himself as many (albeit at fluidity and vagueness)
as he also feels himself as "all the people", being participate in the
being of all men. He is the summation of non-beings synthetized on a
supposititious being.
g) As an innate faker, Pessoa does have a tendency to the mystification,
the artistic pretending. This attitude represents to him the supreme
beauty destiny.
h) Fernando Pessoa is a man fraught by a large interest for the spiritual,
the mysterious, the obscure, i.e. a poet interested in metaphysical
subject.
i) The writer used to say that never in other mans life the mystery of
the world penetrated so deeply as in his life. According to him, the
world is nothing nada, zero, but a zero full of mystery, and this
mystery fulfills his entire life with a strange meaning. All the things in
this world are symbolical unknowing of the Unknowing.

j) Pessoa conceives the man as a fallen, in a Gnostic accession, like a


king that undressed his own royalty, a king that has abandoned his
throne of dreams and weariness, always as a shadow, one double
and stranger to himself.
k) Fernando Pessoa subsumes the existence in terms of unhappiness, of
despair, of anguish, an evil way full of enigmas. According to him,
everything is solitude and emptiness, abysm and night.
l) Fernando Pessoa subsumes that the sensation is closer to the
essence of all things.
m) On account to consider that all the truth must to be pursued,
nonetheless it will never be reached, Fernando Pessoa can be
considered as a skeptical in philosophical matter.
n) In Fernando Pessoa writings, the metaphysical problems are intangible
by the sciences and knowledge in general, and are not susceptible to
solution, even by the reason.
o) One must to seek the constantly perfecting in abstraction. This attitude
can be performed on arts as Literature and Music, and only sometimes
by Philosophy, since its practice consists in exercise of the spirit to
depicting impossible worlds.
p) Fernando Pessoa conceives the existing (existent / entity) in the light
of the principle of negativity. According to him, the principle of
negativity contains the heart of our intelligibility, it means, the
dialectical principle of the being determination by its negation.
Therefore, this way of thinking leads us to another principle: the
principle of contradiction.
q) Pessoa believes in the movement as the essence of the world. Thus, his
thought can be connected to Heraclitus philosophy.
r) One can perceive in Fernando Pessoas subjectivity two main
structures:
a) The becoming-other embodied by his heteronymous and semiheteronymous in a multitudinous personality;
b) The becoming-me embodied by himself in a labyrinthic and abyssal
identity that leads him to the existential matter permeated by the
tedium vitae.

1) The constant elucubration about the validity of knowledge. In both


poets one can grasp the corollary of disillusionment and failure of the
practical reason. The reflection about the inutility of institutional
knowledge appears in both Pessoa and Goethe, primarily in the
Goethes scene Night (Nacht) and in the end of Pessoas drama,
named Faust in his laboratory (similar to Studierzimmer in Goethes
Faust) and in the end of Act V.
2) Signs and symbols of nature evocation can be seen in both texts.
However, in Pessoa the relation between Fausto and nature seems to
be more of a pantheist temperament.

3) The pansophy is also presented either in Pessoa as in Goethe.


Whereas, Fernando Pessoa had contact with Aleister Crowley and other
writers who dealt with mysticism, Rosacrucianism by the reading of
Georg von Welling with Opus Mago Cabbalisticum et Theosophicum
(1760), Masonry and Hermetic philosophy, as well Goethe had made
contact with many of Pansophy thought, including Kirchweger with
Catena Aurea Homeri (1723), Swedenborg with Arcana Coelestia
(1749-56), Clavicula Salomonis and the writings of Nostradamus. May
the concept of Earth-Spirit possibly be related to these influences?
Question N 1 Is the metaphors related to the semantic field of
weaving connected to Spinozist pantheistic philosophy? (natura textor /
natura naturata / natura naturans). About this matter, there is a scene
on Pessoas Fausto in which the weavers are spinning the warp of life.
(weavers = fate).
4)

The criticism presented behind the construction of Wagner as a


character an academic representative type, from humanist and
rhetoric tradition likely Erasmus of Rotterdam finds echoes on
Fernando Pessoas conception of literature in the last quarter of
ninetieth century.

5) The appearance of Earth-Spirit

Goethe
Name: Earth-Spirit

Pessoa
Name: Nameless (Inominvel) /
Existence (Existncia) / Voice that
speaks into the darkness (Voz
que fala na treva) the word
esprito only appears here.
The Nameless is a character
which describes itself more than
the Being that transcends
Creator and creature. This Being
no
one
comprehends.
Everything is only a moment in
its eternity.

The spirit that substitutes the


idea of an old God. Goethe
created a concept of a inner
entity who may would provides
the connection between Faust
and a metaphysical realm. Is the
Earth-Spirit
connected
to
Mephistopheles?
It would be the Earth-Spirit a sort The voice that speaks into the
of Jacob's ladder to Faust, where darkness is the only character
the purpose of the ladder is to that called itself as a spirit: the
explain the relationship between Spirit of Joy. This spirit spins its
two realities, between existence own shroud and its mood has
on earth and existence in the mortal features, that rules out
"world of heavenly spheres," both the possibility of that spirit being
of which are set in motion by somewhat of transcendental.
God?
'Erdgeist' is at first by no mean Pessoas Fausto did not have a
hostile but rather graciously vision of a Spirit, but he had
inclined, appreciative of the great experienced
the
horror
of
effort of volition which drew him existence.
He
touched
the
from his sphere, and only mystery but he cannot explain
becomes scornful when he sees what this experience means.
Faust cringing in abject terror.
This
collapse
of
Faust
is
commonly explained by the sheer
immensity
of
the
vision
vouchsafed to him, or else by an
overwhelming sense of the
tragedy of life.
On the Forest and Night (Wald Fernando
Pessoas
Fausto
und Hhle),
would Faust comprehend any contact with the
addressing himself to the Earth- supersensible world as a curse, in
Spirit, thanking it for having opposition to the Goethes Faust.
permitted him to know his own
innermost?
The problem of suicide is The problem of suicide is directly
associated to negation of the connected
with
the
Earth-Spirit in congregating to consciousness of the absurd of
Faust. The escapism in death life, its horror and its eternal and
here is related to a sort of unsolvable mystery.
disillusion, and the death can
represents the way to freedom in
face of suffering and the absence
of a more profound knowledge.
In both authors, Faust, through his arrogance and devotion to science
and knowledge
had aspired to achieve the condition of Superman

Obs.: Two important authors not translated to English: Erich Trunz and
Albrecht Schne.
Obs.: The relation between the Macrocosms-Sign and The Earth-Spirit.
Question N 2 Is the verses 1.111-1.112 on Goethes Faust related to
the concepts of Apollonian and Dionysian forces Like Albrecht Schne
asserts that these verses remind the operetta Hercules choice, by
Wieland, where Arete (allegory of virtue) X Kakia (incarnation of a
voluptuous indolence)?
Question N 3 Can the striving be associated to the failure of
congregating between Faust and the Earth-Spirit, and therefore related
do the concept of will in Schopenhauer? Is Faust arguing his slavery,
whether condemned to his striving (Streben), as condemned to the
persistence (Beharren) in pursue external pleasures? (v. 1.708-1.711).

6) The Night (Nacht), the darkness, as a symbol of beginning and ending


of all living things is presented in both texts. In Goethe, Mephistopheles
seems to be compared to Erebus, mythical personification of the
primordial emptiness (Son of Caos / Sister of Nyx) - (v. 1383-1384). In
Pessoa, the term noite (night), and others words belonging to the same
semantic field like: crepsculo (crepuscule), escurido (darkness)
appear in whole poem. There are two episodes, respectively named
Monlogo nas Trevas (Monologue in the Dark) and Monlogo Noite
(Monologue at Night) that represent the moments when Fausto is
closely to his apparent death (suicide).
7) Both in Goethe's drama as in its Portuguese eponymous, Faust curses
the Christian virtues, namely: Faith (Glaube), Hope (Hoffnung), Love
and Charity (Liebeshuld), and Pacience (Geduld).
Another general argues (wonderings)

I.

In attempting to grasp the concept of absurdity and its application to


understanding of Faust dilemma, his behavior facing life, his despair
and hopeless, I encountered the term Weltschmerz. I think that is a
good concept to explore the psychic state in which there is an
irreconcilable contrast between mans aspirations and its material
environment. Is there any anachronism or inconsistence that prevents
me to explore this concept to apply it on Faust interpretation in
regarding to his endeavor to translate his striving into reality?

II.

Is it possible to relates the theme of suicide in Werther and Faust? In


other words, even from different motivation, would not have both

characters two peculiar traits in common, namely: they cannot find


happiness in the common joys of life and they wish to enjoy nature in a
simple, healthy way, but they cannot also escape from their own
thoughts?
Points of contact between Goethes and Pessoas Faust
Die Poesie ist das Echt
Absolut reelle. Dies ist der Kern
Meiner Philosophie.
Je poetischer, Je wahrer.
Novalis

Fernando Antnio Nogueira Pessoa (*June 13th, 1888 November 30th,


1935) is the more enigmatic writer, not only in Portuguese Literature.
In according to the records, Pessoa had written his first poem in July of
1895, when he was only 6 years old. The motivation of this very young
composition was the moving with his mother and his stepfather to
South Africa, almost two years after his father passed away.
To My Dear Mother
Here I am in Portugal
In the lands where I was born.
However much I love them,
I love you even more.

Of course that I am not bringing this poem as an example of Pessoas


aesthetic. However, although nave, this poem inaugurates a necessity
of artistic expression that Fernando already presented at that time.
Almost 30 years after write this poem, Bernardo Soares, one of the
authors of The Book of Disquiet would return to the theme of Pessoas
mother, once he was so close to Pessoa that he could not be
considered a heteronym: My mother died to soon for me to ever know
her (PESSOA, 2001, p.228). It is a sort of poetical baptism.
The most interesting about the early writings of Pessoa is that, since
his childhood he used create other characters. His first heteronym has
born when the little Fernando was maybe 5, 6 years old, and wrote
the name, a bit misspelled, of the Chevalier de Pas in his mother
birthday book. A birthday book it was a common thing in Victorian
England.

The birthday book was to remember the birthdays of all your relatives
and friends. So for each day of the year there would be a little poem, a
flower, in this particular birthday book, and then a place to write the
names of people who were born on that day. So one can see that
already as a small child he wanted to attribute real existence to his
invented characters.

Copy of Victorian Birthday Book (w/d)

First and foremost is necessary to mention that Fernando Pessoa has


been in contact to Goethes work in according to what can be
concluded from the editions found at his personal library. There were
three editions of Faust one translated from German to English by John
Anster Leipzig and Bernhard Tauchnitz (1867); the second one
translated from German to English by John Anster (1909) (this edition
had contained 420p., instead of 296p. of the first one); the third one a
compendium of three texts Faust, Werther and Hermann et Dorothe,
translated to French by Ernest Flammarion diteur (1907); There was
also a edition of Lieds; Ballades; Odes; Posies Diverses: Sonnets,
pigrammes, legies, Promthe, Divan Oriental-Occidental; translated
to French by Alphonse Sch (1909). Thereby, one can conclude that
Fernando Pessoa had no contact with the German editions of Goethe's
work. However, I cannot see demerits in this fact, insofar Fernando

Pessoa in many of his works refers to Goethe as one of the most


important artist of all epochs, including the poet in the hall of the real
Genius of all humanity. In his Herstrato e a busca da imortalidade is
presented one of these references to Goethe as artist.
I have often reflected [on] how wise are the sayings of Goethe in his
conversations with Eckermann. But I have also often reflected [on] how many
sayings equally wise I have heard in the course of my life, in conversation
with people who, however intelligent, were hardly candidates for Goethes.
Again, ideas are common, even brilliant ideas. The worlds is always
overpacked with geniuses of the casual. It is only when the casual becomes
the universal by intense concentration on it, by extensive working of it into
consequences and conclusions, that right of entry is gained into the mansions
of the future. (PESSOA, 2000, pp. 131-132).

In addition to admiration from Pessoa to Goethe, it is crucial to


emphasize the fact that Pessoa had three versions of Faust which
indicates that Pessoa was in fact not just interested in the Goethe's
work, but especially in his Faust. Perhaps Pessoa had been trying to
grasp the essence of the tragedy, although at that time Portugal had
already published two Portuguese versions of Faust, one by Antnio
Feliciano de Castilho (1872), edition highly criticized by Portuguese
specialists in German language, and the edition by the diplomat
Agostinho dOrnellas (1860). The both Portuguese editions were not
found in the personal library of Fernando Pessoa, which lead us to
suppose that Pessoa was worried about the quality of the translation,
reason that maybe explain why he had chosen the French and English
editions.

1. What is Fernando Pessoas Faust?


Fernando Pessoa has lived only 47 years. During his short nevertheless
productive life, he spent almost 28 years in the Faust project. This
project had consisted in writing (as all manuscripts leads us to believe)
three sorts of Fausts. An enormous and megalomaniac itinerary that
surrounds his psychological structure, that were multiplied in 136
fragmented fictional personalities.1
Published for the first time in 1956 under the title The First Faust, the
text was organized in four themes, subsumed by Pessoas cousin
Eduardo Freitas da Costa based on the lists which contained the
editorial projects of Fernando Pessoa. The themes were: The mystery of
1 In this respect see the edition of Jernimo Pizarro Eu sou uma Antologia: 136
autores fictcios. Lisboa: Tinta da China, 2014.

the world, The horror of knowing, The failure of pleasure (joy) and love,
The fear of death. This edition left many blank verses and
misunderstandings, caused by the difficult of reading Pessoa
manuscripts. However, this edition was the foreground to the two next
editions, more complete and critical, already made with elements of
genetic critic.
(LIST)
Among these two mentioned editions, the most reliable is the edition of
Teresa Sobral Cunha, published in 1988. Unlike the first edition, this
edition is not organized by themes, but in acts and interacts. This
organization is very contested by Pessoa scholars since, even though
the poet has planned in one of his lists the organization of Faust in acts,
he never indicated which fragment belong to each act. Therefore,
Teresa Sobral organization is a sort of attempt to link the editorial
projects to fragments found in the ark of Fernando Pessoa, ark which
contains more than 25,000 documents, small roles, mostly manuscripts
and few of these typewritten. In the reading Sobral Cunha, the title was
also modified from The First Fausto to Fausto: Subjective Tragedy.
(FRAGMENTS OF THE FIRST FAUSTO: Dramatic Poem)
(FRAGMENTS OF FAUSTO: Subjective Tragedy)
According to the collation of these two editions, one of the aspects that
appears in both of them is the relation between the themes and
Goethes Faust. Although the German play contains a much larger
structure, the division well defined in two parts, the idea of World
Theater the themes that are being treated in Fernando Pessoa poem
demonstrate a correlation to themes addressed in the German tragedy.
So, my lecture today will seek to address aspects of this theme in
correlation.

1. The Mystery of the World and the Absurdity of Existence


The idea of Mystery of the World in Fernando Pessoa is directly related
to the problem of Existence. And the problem of Existence is also
connected to the question of Literature as Representation. During my
appreciation of the poem, I tried to determine what should be the
dynamic of my reading: the way in which my reader's attitude, my
behavior to what was presented to my sight, would determine my
comprehension of the piece. And what surprised me since the first

page was the negative character of my effort. In other words, it


seemed to me that at every time of my contact with Fausto, this poem
took me for a walk around itself, in circles, making me travel in a kind
of a journey of reiterated themes and concepts which were not
converted into a dramatic action. Furthermore, the strategy of
composition developed inside the poem, elaborated recurrently on
analogies, paradoxes, antinomies and antithesis, guided me to a
dynamic of reading in which the movement was back and forth, inside
a sort of constant hesitance.
I denominate herein reading of "negativity" a sort of reading that lies
on the irresolution of the enigmas that are presented during the writing
process, but also a reading which succumbs in the attempt to
comprehend not only the enigmas the mysteries that are presented
therefore the style that stumbles in trying to conceive the poem as a
piece of theater. In addition, Fausto does not allow the decoder to make
its own reading because the poem draws us into the same abyss in
which Fausto is dragged. What and where is this abyss, one of the
matters of poem?
The starting point of my inquiry was one of the key points of Fernando
Pessoa's poetic: the discussion about the Existence. This discussion is
based, among other things, on characteristics that may be classified
here as negativity, since that is also the thought about an idea of antiphilosophy, in better words, an anti-conceptual philosophy.
Nevertheless, his poetry it would carry, create, build through a
strategy of paradoxes an irreconcilable tragedy, an ontological
manner of thought, that performs a sort of anti-philosophical system.
The condensation provided by Fausto is based on three fundamental
axes over the five acts that comprise them, namely: the limits of
knowledge an intelligibility (this theme includes the notions of truth,
reality, real, dream, experience, sensation and perception); the
metaphysical meditation (this theme includes consideration of death,
immortality, mystery, the finite, the infinite, emptiness void , Being
and non-Being); the collapse of rationality in front of these two axes
already presented (this theme includes terror, horror, madness,
abandonment, boredom, fatigue, oblivion). It is evident that these
three fields are interdependent and cannot be thought in a relationship
of cause and consequence. They are presented in this way in order to
facilitate the comprehension of ideas in a didactic and more
understandable reading.
(Project poem)

The only mystery in the universe


Is that theres a mystery of the universe.
Yes, this sun that unconsciously lights up
The earth, the trees and all the seasons;
The stones I walk over, the white houses,
People, human fellowship, history,
All that passestradition or speech
Between one soul and another, voices, cities
None of this comes with an explanation for why
It exists, nor does it have a mouth for speaking.
Why doesnt the sun come up announcing
What it is? What secret reason explains
The existence of the stones under my feet,
Of the air I breathe, and of my need to breathe?
Its all an absurd and monstrous machine.
Were ignorant with the whole of our body
And our seeing, which is the souls body.
Why is there what is? Why is there a universe?
Why is the universe the one it is?
Why is the universe made the way its made?
Why is there what is? Why is there anything?
Why is there a world, and why is it how it is?
Why is there here, this, coincidence and difference?
(quota 30A-5*)

Fausto cannot understand existence as a notion, but he only accepts it


as an insight and to affirm it as a fact.
Inside Fausto this axiom is designed ad nauseam. The protagonist is
ultra-conscious of the horror that is to exist, because the fact that it is
not comprehensible by methods of analysis on which the starting point
is the attempt of conceptualization. He has the intuition that the act of
thinking pushes him away from the knowledge of the real truth. The
excessive thinking, always, leads him to an intimate way to experience
the world, so that this dynamic also dehumanized him. This
streamlined experience keeps him away to feel like other men, inside
the dimension of the will. This experience sums up a kind of feel that

makes him denying the world, and this movement is increasingly


lonely, leading him choosing to become a misanthrope. Fausto does not
lose his sanity by a lack of understanding. On the contrary, the reason
for his climb to the madness is not absence of rationality, but the
excess of it.

The mystery of the eyes and the look


Of the subject and the object, transparent
To the horror that is beyond it; the mute
Feeling of unknown itself,
And the suffered commotion that is born
Of feeling the madness of the void;
The horror of a misunderstood existence
When this horror comes to the soul
It makes all the human pain an illusion.
That is the supreme pain, the real cross.
They want to despise your holy proud
Oh, Christ!
So I see horror the inner soul,
The perennial mystery that crosses,
Like a sigh, heaven and hearts.
Thus, I am thinking more than anyone else, [] (quota 2921*/29-58*/29-21)

The horror mentioned in this fragment consists, in the first instance, in


a loss of contemplative ability, which is derived from the replacement
of seeing by the dynamic of rationalizing the senses. This observation
leads us to the question: What is the cause for which this mechanism
(Fernando Pessoa often use the word gear or wheel) of thinking is
triggered? What is the element that drives the wheel within Fausto?
Consequently, what was presented as reason (including its excess)
collapses due to the inability to understand the existence as the thingin-itself. The horror is established from the time that the possibility of
conceptualization comes up on the limit of concept. The existence,
given as incomprehensible, starts to create around itself a new
dynamic conceptualization. This means that it is present in the poem
the creation of a limit-concept, which cannot be formulated as
content. A concept in which the experience of inadequacy of the

concept of concept itself is manifested. Fausto, repetitively, also raises


these questions concerning what it means the existence as the thingin-itself:
More than existence
It is a mystery to exist, to be, to have
One being, an existence, an exist
Any one, not this one, since this is it
This is the problem that disturbs more.
What is to exist not us or even the world
But to exist-in-itself? (29-34)

A thesis appears from this experience of inadequacy. Does existence,


given its conceptualization limit, create around itself the "limitconcept", which is existence itself, and that cannot be formulated as a
philosophy, but just as poetry? Could the existence, as a concept
denying oneself, only be represented symbolically, metaphorically,
lyrically? To answer these questions, we have to collect and analyze
other variables in the constitution of the poem. Some background to
grasp these insights is required.
In World as Will and Representation (1851) Arthur Schopenhauer
presents an idea of world divided between what he named
Representation and Will. According to Schopenhauer, there are into the
"reality" of the world two ways of this world to be captured by our
experience. The first and clearer of these ways of apprehension of the
world is by Representation. The representation includes acquaintance
of categories such as: perception, ideation, rational cause, motivation,
goals, reflection, and others. Representation exists only for us to be
able to perceive it and understand it, as it is, it is no more than a
projection of our intellect. Through this projection, we impose purpose
and causality upon it through our intelligence.
Nonetheless, underling this illusion, exists the Will, instinctive forces
of nature, such as pain or pleasure, that Schopenhauer calls blind
urges, which works exactly in the opposite way of Representation.
These forces work to create an absurd drive toward existence. Thus,
this essential condition of the world has no reason or motivation, the
purpose and end teleology. Whenever we try to control it, we simply
manifest the Will unconsciously. Thus, Schopenhauer suggests that our
"existence" is a continual oscillation between the hope for purpose and
the conclusion that this yearning can never be fulfilled. This dynamic
would lead us to what Schopenhauer named the "Eternal Becoming".

Eternal becoming, endless flux, belongs to the revelation of


the essential nature of the will. Finally, the same thing is
also seen in human endeavors and desires that buoy us up
with the vain hope that their fulfilment is always the final
goal of the willing. But as soon as they are attained, they
no longer look the same, and so are soon forgotten,
become antiquated, and are really, although not
admittedly, always laid aside as vanished illusions. It is
fortunate enough when something to desire and to strive
for still remains, so that the game may be kept up of the
constant transition from desire to satisfaction, and from
desire to satisfaction, and from that to a fresh desire, the
rapid course of which is called happiness, the slow course
of sorrow [].
As we can perceive, the Eternal Become would belong to the revelation
of the essential nature of Will. Throughout the trajectory of the
character represented in the poem, there seems to be a part of him the
attempt to regain the contemplative capacity and, thereafter, to
release the drive toward existence, that is, toward the Will. However,
because of a kind of curse which afflicts him, Fausto is sentenced to
two consecutive penalties: the first is, to have bet all his efforts on
comprehending the mystery through the reason, he sees himself failing
on purpose because he comes to understand that the mystery is not
comprehensible to the understanding. As a result, Fausto enters into a
vortex of doubt and uncertainty because his conviction is not only to be
doomed to always think and to always be aware, but he also knows
that at some point of his life, he experienced was exposed the
Mystery, nonetheless, he cannot make this experience something
cognizable now.
The thinking, and to always think
Give me an intimate way and (...)
Of sentiment which makes me inhuman.
I cannot any longer fraternize the feeling
With the feeling of others, misanthrope
Unavoidably and in my essence.

And continues
The more deeply I think, more
Deeply I misunderstand myself.
To know is the unconsciousness of ignoring,

Even those who know much knows nothing.


The more deeply I think, yes,
Deeper I feel ignored,
Deeper I feel something
Aside from that I deeply think.
And this is what makes me say: I think
Deeply. (29-49*)
This fracture between thinking and understanding the world, the gap
between what is Will and what is Representation, leads Fausto to a
thought that I previously termed "negativity". That is, there is the
possibility of living under certain naivety to the idea that the world is a
dream, that there are possible utopias to be achieved, not by launching
efforts to thought, but this behavior is not represented as a solution to
the mystery of things, it was established as a non-clarification way. On
the other hand, applying efforts in thought, in philosophy, in all the
sciences, does not provide the sense of existence, because the
collapses happen when he realizes the difference of the thing-in-itself,
existing in its gerund. For this an attempt to overcome the
Representation is needed in the search for a new understanding
through the striving for Will.
The collapse between Will and Representation happens in Fausto due to
his exposition to the mystery, and this mystery is presented as
unsolvable, because its nature is connected with the impossibility of
conceptualization concerning the experience of existence. Hence is
created, during the creation of the poem, a poetic that would not
contend the concepts of existence, or thing-in-itself, but a sort of
poetry as a possibility of representation of these ideas. Moreover, this
discourse mode inserts Fernando Pessoas Fausto in a meta-poetical
category, since it is possible to perceive during the drama reading an
idea of anti-philosophy. By using this term, I would indeed say that the
poem places in probation the mimetic capacity of literature to give us
an accounting to represent what we understand as "reality." Instead of
seeking in philosophy or in natural sciences a plausible explanation for
this "reality" as it presents to us, Fausto inquiries into the apparent
uselessness of rational thinking so that we can grasp the truth.

2. Fausto and Maria (echoes from Gretchen Tragedy)


In Fernando Pessoa, the relationship between the supposed couple
Fausto / Maria does not present the tragic nature in the same
proportion that occurs in Goethes. The passage subtends a

relationship that has already occurred for a while in emotional terms,


but still would not have consummated in the sexual sense. Fausto is
afraid of that consummation, because it will set him up in "a
metaphysical terror," however he does not take Maria into a tragic
denouement like Gretchen. The tragedy is internal, an inner tragedy,
and happens in a subjectively manner, in the ongoing rationalization
which Fausto does of that he feels (or should feel) through Maria.
In Fernando Pessoa, the most emblematic aspect of his love to Maria
lies in the fact that Faust uses the relationship to achieve another
category of knowledge as well as in Goethe however he fails on this
attempt, and while feeding that craving, he enters in a whirlwind of
horror, even dreadful than the horror of not grasping the new category
of knowledge. There is no salvation for the soul of Faust in the
Portuguese tragedy, as in Fernando Pessoa the hell and the very idea of
devil are already living in our antihero as components of his
subjectivity. The loneliness after the love is larger than previously
experienced.
Is this love? Only this! I feel like
The tuning brain, a jouissance
But a heavy heart, cold, and mute.
I feel cravings, desires
But not with my whole being. Something
In my intimate, something there,
Cold, heavy, remains muted.
(PERSON, 2013, p. 163)

Maria, in Pessoa is a material woman, and does not reach the


metaphysical status as happened in Goethe, except through the horror
caused to Fausto in the contact with her. The love here does not
redeem Fausto, he is the unforgiven and he will not to be saved. Maria,
a name also linked to the semantic universe of theology, play the role
of whom "Yes I will pray for you, Faust" at his request. An image as
well lyrical and of compunction counter-libidinous, "I do not have the
vividness or blazing / That someone have, I tremble at myself [...] / But
I love you ... How much i love you [...] " she did not transform into
another celestial figure to save Faust of his martyrdom, condemnation,
that consists in never know how to feel without, in the middle of it all,
put the thought as an intermediate of the emotions.

The metaphysical dread of Someone Else!


The horror of another consciousness,

Like a god spying on me!


How I wish
I were the only consciousness in the universe,
So that no one elses gaze would observe me!
The living mystery of seeing stares at me
From everyones eyes, and the horror of them
Seeing me is overwhelming.
I cant imagine myself any different,
Nor imagine this consciousnessmy twin
Having any other form, or a differently
Different content. All I see are
Men, animals, wild beasts and birds
Horribly alive and staring at me.
Im like a supreme God who one day
Realized that hes not the only one
And whose infinite gaze now confronts
The horror of other infinite gazes.
Ah, if at least I reflect the transcendent
Glow from beyond God!

Fausto fears the metaphysical horror from loving experience with


another person because he conceives the idea of existence as
unthinkable, even more in respect to the rationalization of feelings,
although he always say that he can only feel with the thought: "The
transcendent horror of a human body! / Feel the mystery of another
life / So intimately close ... almost ours. " (PESSOA, 2013, p. 162). He
understands that the experience of existence is closer to the feeling
that is dislodged of thinking and that this sort of abandonment of
consciousness is only possible during the experience of meeting and
giving himself to the other. He is scared since it means the experience
of the horror in breaking up with the understanding.

2. Literature considering itself inside the


representation Negation and Silence in Faust

crisis

of

The power of words is one of the most uncontroversial truths in


Literature and Language Studies. It is very common to assert that
words carrying with themselves innumerable possibilities to manipulate

the power over society. Since as elements of philosophical, political,


economical, sociological, medical, biological, technical or religious
discourses, words still constitute itself as a largest important material
aspect of human language, in despite of others representations of
language presented nowadays, characteristically more audiovisual than
the language that appears on books, for example. This assertive is too
obvious, however, necessary to show to the reader our line of
argument.
Before the articulated speech emerges to express the ideology of a
community, this ability has permitted men to develop the possibility to
differ themselves to the others animate beings. However, at the same
time that this aptness weaves the inner substance of human being, it
also may conduce them to damnation, once this capacity, albeit
metaphorically, was stolen from gods by Prometheus.
On this matter, many texts have been written, presumably because the
myth of Prometheus is a very figurative one, mostly inasmuch its
symbolic significance opens to differing interpretations.
Insofar the presence of word it is necessary to communicate, this
presence demands the apparition of silences. There is no act of speech
without silences. Nonetheless it is crucial to explain the distinction
between silences and Silence, as mentioned by Leslie Kane:
Silences putted in plural are the intervals between verbalized
responses that indicates separation (and that steadily, increase
canon to overtake and nearly obliterate the spoken word).
Silence, putted in singular on the other hand, is the Void, the
Nothing, the ultimate language of the self that is unattainable. It
is in the silences that the presence of ephemeral Silence
evoked.2

Although referring Samuel Beckett, the Kanes commentary may be


applied to Fernando Pessoa poetry. In his Fausto, Pessoa shows the
struggle against the logic of speech in order to express what the words
would seek to deny: the uncertain, the contradictory, the unthinkable.
As happens in Beckett drama, in Pessoa one can perceive a sort of
disjunction in language, in order to express the illogical and the infinite,
devising a language of negativity or, in Kanes words, a language of
cancellation. I allow myself to interpret this condition of cancellation
as a very peculiar apparatus in Fernando Pessoa writing strategy,
element of convergence among several artists of his generation. Jos
de Almada Negreiros, one of his partners in Orpheu, said in his
2 KANE, Leslie. The Language of Silence: On the Unspoken in Modern Drama. London:
Associated University Presses, 1984.

memories published in 1965 that the reason that what brought


together all those poets was the fact that they had in common a sort
of absence, a common non-identity, the same lack of a missing
place. (ALMADA, 1965, p. 3).
This statement has a more philosophical basis. One of the others
Pessoas heteronyms, Raphael Baldaya, had written his Tractate of the
Negation in 1916, in which he exposes that the forces of negation, in
contrary sense of the forces of affirmation, emanates from the
beyond-the-One, while the forces of affirmation emanates from the
One. This the One can be understood in this context as the
foreground of God.
[] 4. The One of whom God, God the Creator of Things, is only
one manifestation, is an illusion. All creation is a fiction and an
illusion. As the Materia is an illusion, demonstrably, for Thought;
the Thought is an illusion for Intuition; Intuition is an illusion for
the Pure Idea; Pure Idea is an illusion to the Being. And the Being
is essentially an Illusion and a Falseness. God is the Supreme lie.
5. The forces that deny are the same ones those departing from
beyond the One. Outside the One, to our intelligence, there is
nothing. []3

It is not a novelty to conclude that Fernando Pessoa, since had become


a representative Portuguese writer in the beginning of twentieth
century, belongs to a generation of artists extremely influenced by
French Decadents, which means that they had partially an awareness
about the ambiguity of progress, the social, economic and political
problems of modernity, inasmuch they were also influenced by the
French, Italian and German avant-garde aesthetics that were raising at
that time over the Europe. At the same time that they were pessimists
about the situation of Portugal in a European context, they were
responsible for tremendous innovation on the artistic style, based on
the newest experimentations of several -isms in an attempt to depict
their controversial mindsets and a worldview that denounces a sort of
death of former paradigms, namely, the death of History, the death of
God, the death of the past, even the death of the Subject. Pessoas
aesthetic of negation is one of the more important features in his
poetry, even more impressive in his Faust.

3 [] 4.O nico, de quem Deus, o Deus Criador das Coisas, apenas uma
manifestao, uma Iluso. Toda a criao fico e iluso. Assim como a Matria
uma Iluso, provadamente, para o Pensamento; o Pensamento uma iluso para a
Intuio; a Intuio uma iluso para a Ideia Pura; a Ideia Pura uma Iluso para o Ser.
E o Ser essencialmente Iluso e Falsidade. Deus a Mentira Suprema.5. As foras
que negam so aquelas que partem de alm do nico. Fora do nico, para a nossa
Inteligncia, no h nada. []. PESSOA, Fernando. Textos Filosficos . Vol. I.
Fernando Pessoa. (Estabelecidos e prefaciados por Antnio de Pina Coelho.) Lisboa:
tica, 1968 (imp. 1993).