the wandering doomster

A mission laying with being errant. In error and wandering. The nomadic life. Otherness as a catalyst for the creative impulse; a perpetual otherness which lacks any clear sense of home. Of firm footing. The true mission: to be a restless wanderer on earth. An eternal guest.

It all arose from the Christian archetype of what became known as a populist image of the wandering jew, though it is far more nuanced and complex a dynamic; for the masses the story has origins in the thirteenth-century and asserts that Jesus, bearing the cross through the streets of Jerusalem on the way to his crucifixion  encountered a Jewish spectator, who pushed and taunted him. As punishment from heaven, this Jew was condemned to an eternity of restless wandering upon earth—a dramatic symbol of his people’s fate….

Bosch. The Wanderer. ---Steiner depicts as a kind of golden age of Jewish modernity. He looks back nostalgically on the role played by eminent Jewish thinkers and artists in the vanguard of the philosophical, scientific, and artistic development of the period. The list of names is breathtaking: Sigmund Freud, Albert Einstein, Ludwig Wittgenstein, Franz Kafka, Arnold Schoenberg, Edmund Husserl, Carl Krauss, Theodor Adorno, Gustav Mahler, George Cantor, Herman Broch, Walter Benjamin, Ernst Bloch, Hannah Arendt, and numerous others. Rarely has civilization known such a concentrated burst of creativity as that which seemed to flow directly from the Jewish genius that had been liberated from the ghetto.--- Read More: image:

The philosopher George Steiner has suggested that the historic role of Jews in human history is to be perpetual wanderers. As you accumulate your air miles, do you see yourself in that light?

A little bit. I’m a global nomad and gypsy. Born In Turkey, raised in Israel and Italy and now New York. I’ve visited every continent except Antarctica several times in the past year. But wherever I go, I learn.Read More:

---This commitment to a textual “homeland” contrasts sharply with nationalism centered on a physical homeland, which Steiner sees as the blight of modernity. “Nationalism, and with it tribalism, its primordial shade, is the nightmare of our age. Despite the fact that these are devoid of content, humans bring mad destruction down upon one another in their name.” By contrast, the “man of the book” is not misled by tribal, ethnic, or nationalist fantasies. He lives in a different world altogether, removed from the violence of the masses. For Steiner, the life of the spirit fosters a critical moral perspective that rejects collective bravado and subverts the oppressive authority of the national state. Read More: image:

The tradition of the wandering Jew is also utilized in the wanderings of Kafka’s K. in The Castle. A man, despite his efforts, destined never to find a secure home, protective as in the security of the castle. The feelings of alienation,  an outsider, and knowing that your destiny hangs on forces beyond  control, are often associated with the Jewish sensibility, universally, though written by Kafka,  would prove to be perhaps the most widespread and common feeling among all peoples  in the uncertain 20th and 21st century, touching a closer interpretation of Bosch’s Wanderer, also called the Prodigal Son. So, In a direct sense, Jewish concerns have been made universal, and Kafka spoke to this perplexity from a secular perspective,  both  Jewish and member of a larger context.

Unable to put down roots in foreign lands, the Jews developed a talent for abstraction and a facility in the international languages of music, mathematics, and the hard sciences. Since the tribal and national particularisms of the gentiles were alien to them, Jews began exploring the universal aspects of humanity. “Admittedly, I am a wanderer, a luftmensch, liberated from all foundations,” writes Steiner. “Yet I have transformed the persecutions and the irony, the tension and the sophistry these arouse in the Jewish sensitivity, into a creative impulse
which is so powerful that through its power it reshapes large sections of politics, art, and the intellectual structures of our generation.” Read More:

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