An idea is and always will be a screen behind which are other and more important issues. An idea is a pretext, an auxiliary tool.  Thought torn away from human reality is something majestic and splendid, but diluted in a mass of passionate and insufficient beings becomes nothing more than commotion. I am bored by stupid discussions. By the quadrille of argumentation. The insolent carrying on of intellectuals. The empty formulas of philosophy. Our conversations would be great, ah, yes, full of logic, discipline, erudition, method, precision. They would be fundamental, momentous, profound, innovative, if they were not taking place twenty stories above us. ….

I practically do not listen at all anymore to the meaning of the words, I listen only to how they are said.  I demand only that man not allow himself to be duped by his own words of wisdom, that his worldview not take away his common sense, that his doctrine not deprive him of his humanity, that his system not stiffen and mechanize him, and that his philosophy not make him a dullard.  I live in a world that still feeds on systems, ideas, doctrines, but the symptoms of indigestibility are clearer and clearer, the patient has already gotten the hiccups.

from Diary: Volume One.  Northwestern University Press, 1988. Page 29.

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