The Romanian Dimension Of Existence

excerpts Chapter IIIThe Nature of the Being  (…) Anybody who knows this nation will agree that the Romanian is a born opponent. Whatever is proposed to him, his first reaction, the first temptation of his thought is to oppose it. But, strangely, his opposition does not destroy the thing it denies, rather it creates, along with the denied reality, a reality that enriches instead of emptying. Why is the Romanian's spirit negative? Why is his negation not efficient? This great thing, negation, the possibility to say no, to oppose, is the means, the barrier by which the Western thought makes the difference between the possibilities and impossibilities of this existence, between contingent existences and necessary ones. Well, this barrier does not function the same way with the Romanians. Why? The Romanian negation is not existential, it is essential. The Romanian always opposes a mode of being, not the being in itself. So, he always opposes one mode of being by another mode of being. Therefore, this is not negativism, but limitation! The Romanian is essentially a concessive spirit, if you outline to him a plan you mean to be right about! What he will not allow you to do is to be completely right or right in perspective. This also explains the Romanian's excessive, perhaps unparalleled tolerance of his neighbor. Perhaps this is so because, as far as he is concerned, nobody is in fact a complete stranger. Equally, as far as he is concerned, nobody is completely different. Every time the Romanian denies saying “it is not,” his denial is only relative. It should always be assumed that this means “it is not here,” or “it is not there,” or “it is not so,” or “it is not yet,” or “this is not it.” (…) Even when he says that something does not exist at all, the Romanian does not deny its being. (…) Therefore, not to be is not absolute with the Romanian. The entire ontology is regional with him, and the entire being is a way of being. The function of the negation is to deny existence in a specific region of the world or of the being, meaning to deny an adjective or a situation, not a fact. Even when he denies a fact, something that has happened, the Romanian denies the fact that an existence is below the expected level. As no “presence” has with him the privilege of developing, so as to underlie the difference between what is and what is not, his negation loses the privilege of making any other difference than the difference of things, of essences. Its function becomes completely determinative and limitative. By the very act of searching, one proves the existence at a certain level, which is an existence level, too. What is implied in the negation is only a discrepancy between one plane and another. Between a “here” and a “there.” If we imagine that the denial par excellence, the embodiment of the negation, the Devil, was Romanian and came before God's throne for judgment, he would never oppose God's command by saying non fiat, by saying no or “let there not be.” He would argue before God that he sees things differently and better. Which does not mean he would be less diabolical or less dangerous in tempting people. It is important to remember this Lucifer-like trait, which is not Satanic – the Romanian denial in its absolute form. For Satan alone is the one who says no, who fights to undo what God has willed, who is, therefore, an active, existential negating spirit. But Lucifer only speculates on possibilities, namely on the traits and possibilities of the being that lie in the nature of things. This is the Romanian mind when it denies; it is also proved by the fact that the pure negation can be conjugated in Romanian in the affirmative, when answering ba da (yes) to a negative question. This paradoxically strengthens the assertion instead of denying it. The same is true of the denial of the negation: ba nu (no), which is not an affirmative, as in any language where the reiteration of the negation is an assertion. This denial remains in existential opposition, while the negation continues its own function of logical limitation. This meaning is also confirmed by the possibility of the Romanian language to express a negative without using the word no, but only the prefix de, plus the specification of the denied region: defel, deloc (not at all). We can see here the relative limitative meaning of this prefix in the case of the negation. This time the de connected to tot (all) meaning absolute, without any reservations, turns the phrase into an absolute assertion by reiteration. Which is to be expected. (…) The Romanian, as we have seen, knows the word “true” to distinguish between real and the unreal. He also utters the ba, representing an existential opposition, an active denial, the ontological opposition which, opposed to da, can form less gracious alternatives. Finally, the Romanian knows the concept of “nothing,” whose relative character can be debatable; but he also knows nimicire (destruction), which has an undeniable existential meaning. But, as in the case of plenitude, this nothing comes from a quantitative idea, meaning “not at all.” The lack of quality and the limiting nature of the negation remain, therefore, completely confirmed as tendencies of the spirit. What has been said so far must of course be considered as tendencies of the Romanian spirit, rather than absolute positions. But the fact that neither true, nor ba, or nothing ever generated philosophical differences except for the action to destroy or dismantle things makes these tendencies even more important. (...) Chapter IVConsequences  The special meaning of the Romanian negation has many consequences. This special way of construing the negation is fully reflected in our mode of existence. As far as the Romanian is concerned, there occurs a sort of mixture between existence and possibility, which is very interesting in terms of the way it colors the world of consequences. That is: to the Romanian, everything that can exist, namely everything that can be thought, everything that a subject and a predicate can link, exists. It always exists, of course, only to a certain extent, in a certain way, in a certain mode of being, as existence is everywhere regional, relative. But it is. As all things are. This unfelt passage from existence to potential is what fills the Romanian existence with poetry, namely liberty and lack of reality, and brings closer the Romanian's wakefulness to a state of dreaming, an inner dream, endless, which places his attitude from the philosophical point of view not only in pre-criticism, but also in the anti-positive: at the mythical level. The consequences of this melting of the existence into the potential are very important and explain other fundamental attitudes of the Romanian on existence. The first one is that there is no nothingness, second, that there is no absolute impossibility, third, there is no existential alternative, fourth, there is no imperative, and fifth, there is no irremediableness. These are vital for setting the profile of the Romanian man within the Cosmos. Let us consider each of these for a minute more closely. 1. There is no non-existence. The inexistence of the non-being can be easily understood from the above. The idea of non-being has no absolute existence level. It has no body, namely one cannot say about nothingness that “it is not” in any absolute way, meaning “under no circumstances whatsoever.” But the idea of non-being is not entirely devoid of meaning. On the contrary. It proves the existence of a certain existential border-line, a certain threshold of the being, which, when crossed, makes existence change its nature. When added as a negation to the idea of existence, “destruction” shows the possibility of the being to overcome its own limits, to glide out of itself, namely its possibility to cease to be. It shows that the being is not here, is not this way, or is no more. To put it differently, it shows the being gliding out of its absolute mode of being in the world or its fall under the burden of time. But in this meaning the idea is only applicable to the lonely being. Even when talking about the “end of the world,” meaning by this the end of the whole world, one has to regard this world from the perspective of its lonely being, namely to individualize it as the embodiment of a stronger and vaster being, which has been there before and will be afterwards, and which has neither beginning nor end. Only against the existence of such a being can the end of the world have a meaning. “Nothingness” means therefore a certain perspective of the being moving from the whole to the concrete: this perspective measures up the difference between the whole's and the part's modes of being. This means the fall of the being into regional existence, either spatial or modal, or only its fall under the burden of time. This is the only limited perspective, as we have seen, from which existence can be denied. If the existence does not take place in essence, at factual level, but at the level of the mode of being, and if the negation does not have the function to suppress existence, but only to put order in potentialities, to limit its modes of being, it is clear that, to the Romanian, no denial of the being can ever be absolute, but only relative, limited to a certain existence mode. Nothingness, the absolute denial of existence, has no meaning to him. At the most, it looks similar to endlessness, a limit devised by the spirit, by the hypostasis of its own negating attitude in the region or, in a more restrictive, practical meaning, as the result of a destructive operation. But to him a negation will always be – as it is natural for a substantial mind – the negation of something. Therefore, the denial of the existence cannot have an absolute meaning, but it is always derived, referring implicitly to a preceding existence that, owing to the mentioned weakness of the negation, survives ontologically. As regards those who have tried to describe nothingness from the phenomenological point of view in Romanian, we believe that, since phenomenology is a reduction to the essence and as nothingness is precisely the lack of that essence, this description of nothingness can only describe the logical functions of the concept of nothingness, namely its relations with what it is not (which means this is not a phenomenological description). Otherwise, it could only be a juxtaposition of sounds: flatus vocis. 2. There is no absolute impossibility. Another immediate consequence of the weakness of this negation, closely linked to the previous one, is the inexistence of any absolute impossibility as far as the Romanian is concerned. If existence has an essential regional meaning, that is if all that is exists in a certain way, and if the negation, operating on what is, can only reach the mode of being and its region but not the actual existence, it is inferred that there is no absolute impossibility to be. Anything that can be taken into consideration in some way is, at least in one meaning, the one in which it is taken into consideration. And the philosophical discussion regarding its existence cannot take place, it only explains the mode of being. Therefore, the actual existence level is not the level at which things are made and unmade, the level at which they actualize their being potential. The true existence level is the potential one, the level where everything is possible, of divine plenitudes, which in a way precedes the very work of God, the level of vast existential lack of determination, where all things exist with all their modes of being, namely: actualized and not actualized, or even those that can or cannot be actualized. Like any Easterner, the Romanian is aware that what can be seen is only a part, and not the richest one, of what is. That beyond the concrete, there is what can be and that, in fact, the ancient becoming is not an addition to the being, but a limitation of potentialities, or – as a teacher of mine used to say – a “fall into the Cosmos.” At the root of the Romanian view of the being we find this supremacy of the virtual over the actual, the idea of a bosom carrying all virtual things, the idea of a great mother, making up the sum of the possible faces of the individual, and I would say, his Slavic face. Here, in this meaning, not in the meaning of the Vedic nothingness, the Romanian mind encounters the theological and mythical Eastern mind, which is opposed to the Western positivist and anthropological one. It is enough to consider the implications of this idea that the becoming of the world, the accumulation of manifestations and experiences – which enriches the individual's fate to the Westerner – is in fact, to the Romanian, a way to diminish the being, a decreasing of potentialities, a choice between being this way or that way, and a fixation of the being in a single mode of being, which has undergone a contradiction. In a way, it solidifies the concrete existence – impoverishing it, taking away from it what could not have been all at once – to see what transcendent level the Romanian mind uses to raise the question of existence itself and in what way the absolute impossibility has no meaning to this mind. This impossibility, linked to contradiction, has an existential meaning, a concrete one that is reduced to the visible world; it does not touch the absolute of the being, does not change its eternal face, the reference face for understanding. What a being accomplishes out of itself in this world does not measure or exhaust its potential or grandeur. This may serve to explain why the Romanian is so insensitive when faced with his failures, and why no disappointment can change his view of the world's purpose. And maybe this also serves to explain the fact that the tragic character of any alternative, that any existence-oriented mind is so sensitive to, does not affect the Romanian too much, being all too soon dissolved into the perspective – as a redeeming function here – of projecting things onto their glorious status, their mythical existence, the dream, where one can recapture everything that has been lost and from which nothing can be torn apart. And where are they more fully, more realistically experienced if not in the time-ruled existence, in the true one! 3. There is no alternative. What do the verbal moods teach us? This domination of the hypothetical over the actual is visible in what we can call the degree of intensity that the verbal moods are experienced in the language. The basically non-pragmatic character of the Romanian is clear from the frequency of the verbal forms showing speculation on the possible or the conditional future: “What would have happened if it had been different from the way it has been?” The actualizing orientation of metaphysics condemns them mercilessly, with the Latin: Factum fieri infactum non potest. But they endure with the Romanian, even if someone proves to him it could not have been done, as he asks the hypothetical question: “Still, what would have happened if...?” Such hypothetical speculations about what could have been or what should have been done are much more intense than the thought about what must be done in the future. This is why the conditional is the Romanian's favorite verbal mood, taking the place of the other moods or adding color to them. So “I would” is dominant in speech and sometimes replaces “I will.” The conditional is more intensely felt that the present tense. The perfected past dominates the present and the future. And there are so many futures in the past to express a whole range of potentialities! As if the Romanian was always brooding on a level at which things stand forever before the thought, already accomplished, but like temptations, still un-chosen for the deed. So, the imperative is expressed not directly, but by the conjunctive. All is hypothetical, non positivist, and that is where the meaning of all speech is actualized. This confirms, of course, the relative lack of determination in action and the domination of speculation over the possible, over the question of what is to be done in the future, which explains many characteristics of the Romanian mind. To decide, that is to choose an alternative, means to stop at one possibility: either-or. It implies carrying out an action, meaning to come down by way of the deed from the ideal existence to the concrete one. But if things are experienced as potentials for the thought, rather than as realities to accomplish, what meaning can the alternative have? And what meaning does the accomplishment of it have – namely the exit from it: the decision? True, to decide, namely to choose, has meaning only in a world where the potential faces the presence, namely where the fact chooses from among possibilities the one to be actualized, and accomplishes it operating on the circumstances. On the contrary, the awareness that the existence is a potential, to put it differently, that all its levels are equivalent as far as the thought is concerned, the awareness that it is enough to think them or to imagine them and one can have them in reality has, as an unavoidable consequence, the suppression, with the technical aspect, of the existential meaning of the alternative; the disappearance of the need to choose among potentialities that exclude each other only in terms of their becoming deeds. The absolute negation of one such potential, which is the key for ensuring that the descent into reality, the instrument for separating nothingness from factual existence does not function anymore in this case. The borderline of the double negation “it is impossible not to” that characterizes necessity becomes a powerless customs house, a net where nothing stays. In a world of potentialities, the decision cannot therefore have any meaning similar to that of the negation, of a logical threshold, of an abstract opposition of possibilities, of closing up fields. 4. There is no imperative. This leads to a change in the meaning of the imperative. When he says fie! (let it be) the Romanian does not show any claim to be godly like in the Latin fiat! He does not utter a command, does not proclaim the will to do something, does not decree; he accepts what happens, he agrees. Sometimes he even expresses the fact that this consent is devoid of any personal ambition, or that he is even totally indifferent as to its consequences. This is entirely different from the Latin fiat, expressing the dominant will of the first person. The Romanian version is very close to Amen!, which ends everything, the proof of accepting someone else's will: “Thy will be done.” This is worth remembering also because it offers the key to the Romanian idea of kingdom, not as an absolute oppressing rule, but as a community of meaning and humaneness. Does “Conqueror” mean in Romanian a person who represses other people's wills by giving orders, or does it mean someone the others support because he has made sentimental slaves of them by conquering their hearts? Then what is the basis for the observance of rules with Romanians, if they do not have the imperative? The research of that answer pushes the analysis to the core of justifying the ritual action. What is characteristic of the way Romanians observe rules is man's awareness of being part of something, and in general the awareness of the group's rules. This is not a pragmatic determination but a state of knowledge. The imperative is not felt by the Romanian as a command, as an order issued by someone else, but as a lack of order in the existence, a lack of fitting, a lack of fulfillment, a call from somebody or something pushing him to put things in their place, as an absence. Like in fairy-tales, where the garden calls for the princess to clean it, or the water well calls for Prince Charming. So, the legal state is not experienced as an effort to comply with rules, but as an intuitive feeling of organic fitness, of the harmony between existence and being, of freedom, of “back home,” of privacy. Measure in your minds all that separates the threshold of the absolute called Kant's respect for law, the inhuman tyranny of the necessary universal imperative, from the human feeling of freedom, of adjusting that every Romanian feels in contact with rules; and you will be able to see how deeply go into the structure of the real the consequences of not making the basic difference between existence and potential. There are also other types of consequences. The Romanian is not bent to practical things, to what succeeds. The beauties of the road catch his eye and often he stops at such passage points that mean nothing to the place where he must arrive. Statistics show that in the old days most seekers of the perpetuum mobile were Romanians, and this search is one of the notorious examples of the quest for a practical impossibility. So, the Romanian's activity is not rationally, but symbolically and magically linked to its result. The actual, made presence, the “attempt” is no evidence of the existence, and neither is it a guarantee that the fact will be repeated. For only “things” repeat themselves. Neither individuals, nor their private surroundings, which in fact are the only ones that really exist. What would then be the use of the gesture being physically repeated? But the world is not incoherent to the Romanian. It is still intimately linked to man's capacity for understanding. Man finds himself in the becoming of things, but not because things repeat themselves identically, but because their fate makes up a sort of a gesture, of a cycle that defines the face of the thing – as we have seen – which has an equivalent in the life of man, and whose meaning can be understood by man. This way, man sees the cycle of the day. And he sees the same cycle of fulfillment in the year, in man's life, in plants, in houses, in peoples, and in worlds. The cycle can break. Its progress is varied from the morphological point of view. And man can lose himself! But man knows the approximate point he is at with every thing, according to these “signs.” The Romanian's attraction to the calendar has no other meaning and we can say that his whole existence is somehow according to a calendar. The rite gives him reiteration, a way to re-find himself in the world, to reorganize things, their unchanging nature. So, man's deed is communication, sign, and ritual gesture, measured by its function, rather than by its result. And morality is order. 5. There is no irremediableness. By adding up all the above characteristics that define the essential orientation of the Romanian soul in existence, we get yet another consequence. The Romanian does not have the feeling of absolute loss, of the irremediable. To him, nothing can be destroyed for ever, nothing is condemned without any appeal, nothing is lost for good, nothing is beyond repair. How could he feel otherwise as long as the tough reality of the fact does not exercise the censorship of the difference between what is and what is not, and as long as the truest reality is similar to the one in a dream? This is why the Romanian, who is such a formidable opponent in terms of ideas and possibilities, is extremely concessive with facts. His feeling is that they do not matter very much in fact! That they are ordeals on his way, or maybe temptations, or customs houses. But not unbeatable realities to make him take them into consideration as such. This is perhaps one of the reasons why it is difficult to have exact statistics in Romania. It is not because of the methods, but because of the lack of respect for the deed, the fact that the event to be measured has no consistence in the mind of the man who takes note of it! It is well known how much the Romanian needs to file complaints, to complain. Equally, he never considers a ruling against him as final, and he goes to trial all over again every time circumstances seem to be favorable to him. But equally known is his tendency to make compromises and put up with any human solution for the time being, preferring injustice to fair judgment. Here, the Romanian does not desperately cling, like others, to the results of his deeds. Because he acts not because he feels that the result depends on the deed, but out of his need to fall in line with the order of things, to fulfill himself, answering the call, needing to be in line. This is why we will see him acting even in the most absurd circumstances and persisting in acting even if the rational evaluation of the in question circumstances could lead him to despair. And, as we will see, he also acts because he feels he has no choice! Here, we have two consequences. One is the lack of the feeling that existence is serious, lightness before life, and the other is his lack of fear before death. 6. Lightness before life. The normal state of the Romanian is a lack of the feeling that existence is serious. As his existence takes place at the level of the eternal, it unfolds smoothly and non-dramatically.He has his share of dramatic events in his life! But he does not evaluate them as such! As existence is a game of possibilities and as man always has the possibility to appeal against the vicissitudes of concrete existence – by this conversion to the virtual – he does not take things too seriously. He will be careless, will not pay attention, will not make evaluations, will smile, will not worry, and will trust God in small as well as in important affairs. As if the perspective of great horizons may justify one to be ironic about everyday life! But this lack of interest is not indifference. Under the mentioned irony, there is a fresh, warm feeling for the fate of the concrete. But how could he worry so much about things that change when the world he moves in is just a peddle of the great world of the being where his thoughts wander? One worry in this world is enough: to be in line! And this is enough slavery! “What can be will be” and “what is not cannot be here, but will be in glory.” Why should he hurry as long as things and everything happen in their own time? Does the seed grow faster? Can it be made to grow faster otherwise then by twisting nature? But we must always note the periodic emergence in the Romanian world of agents seeking to stimulate the feeling that existence is serious, making man face himself and his responsibility. This acute feeling of history, of the present that does not forgive, demanding of man to intervene “now or never” under the threat that otherwise you lose some potentialities for ever and in an irremediable way, is not in its essence a Romanian feeling. It is, at the most, the symptom of a fever lasting one moment, of a special feeling that time has reached a limit, has grown, or it comes from a temptation from the outside, trying to take the Romanian man out of his real nature. To this, the Romanian consciousness responds with the whole inertia of his attenuating reaction, and sooner or later, all goes back to normal. The man who came out of the burden of time for a moment goes back to his interrupted dialogue with eternity. The curious thing is that this feeling of “now or never” periodically stirs the Romanian nation. It is intertwined with the temptation to modernize things and to Westernize them. So, it is not surprising that the year 1848, when people were deeply influenced by the activist and positivist ideology of the West, is, old or new, the most coherent effort to stir the feeling that existence is serious and to make people assume their historical responsibilities according to the slogans: “If you will, you can” and “Enlighten and you will be.” According to those 1848 ideologists, the Romanian existence was like slumber from which the nation had to be awakened to the reality of the present. The time's militant poets felt they were actually addressing an eternal, timeless reality, a life that takes place somehow out of time, anyway without a present. And they sought to shake it awake to the life of the present, to put it in history. Of all that has been said here it is easy to see what is foreign in placing emphasis on choice and alternatives: “Change your fate!” As if man was not under the burden of time! This call for awakening, the tearing of the curtain of sleep, the breaking of the heart's limits, and the waters leaving the limpid lakes of the mountains to become fast torrents flooding everything on the plains – this existential, active attitude facing the world, this emphasis on the present – can be an on-and-off, original, and dynamic impulse; it emerges when the Romanian spirit faces certain violent thresholds. This could be a reflection on the Romanian soul of the essential trait of static souls, which cannot adjust to changes step by step, by thousands of adjustments made by individuals, but only as a group, by turning around completely, by changing a certain inner mechanism, by conversion, in a jolt, when a certain degree of inner or outer pressure has brought them to a point similar to that of the fruits on trees in summer, which are ready to ripen. But let us take a good look to see what it means to the Romanian to experience this dynamic moment, when his being enters into action. It happens only when the unity of the being has become impossible, reality has been torn apart from dream, man's consciousness has split, having a painful awareness of the actual, away from the vision of the possible, chased out of the distant realms of longing and even beyond, at the moment when the lone, empty dream lacking the peace of the being has become a tyrant in man's soul; and reality – without the fulfillment provided by the joyous presence of desire and hope for the dream to come true – has become unbearable. Then and only then does the dream approach the threshold of the will to provoke action. The Romanian calls this state amar (bitterness); it pushes him to act. Is this action-taking strange? It does not happen because you can, as in the whole West, but because you cannot (bear) anymore. So, even in those moments, it is the need for the eternal presence, the feeling of loss facing the actual and the true being, the fall from the state of dream, the lack of trust that you will be able to do what you have to do, that you will be able to reach again a certain eternal face of the being, the basic impossibility to find your human face, and this feeling of spreading out into something “of this world, too much of this world” that remains the true motive generating the impulsive feeling of immanent action (even if it takes the form of bread). So, such pragmatic wanderings of the Romanian soul are non-spiritual moments, a fall from the state of plenitude, wealth, and grace; this is different from the extreme West, where action is a stable and permanent situation and pragmatism is fundamental: there, this despair that has brought about homo faber seems to have been the basis of the moral law and the daily bread of the human soul for a few hundred years. One piece of evidence to support this is the way these active turnabouts of the Romanian soul look: tortured, desperate, with gnawing teeth, in convulsions, and in great inner tension, not out of inner plenitude, in re-finding one's nature, or in tranquility and grace, as it would look if it were according to its natural lines of development. Another piece of evidence is the fact that once the threshold is crossed and the bitterness flood is over, the waters come back to their own place, re-become clear, and man sees again his faces projected onto the sky in the motionless mirror of the mountain lake. What stone can stir that surface for a longer time? And what frowning could endure here in a summer morning or under the starry sky? And if the amar is never entirely consumed, man always bears it in his heart because he is always in metaphysical contact with the world's lack of fulfillment we mentioned above. But there are two different things here: one is the lucidity of this expectation to fulfill the longing for the whole where all things are and which is the Romanian's basic metaphysical feeling and the justification of his ritual action; the other is the amar, which can no longer be borne and which pushes him to awakening. Only the man to whom nothingness has acquired an absolute meaning, who has lost the feeling of the existence of the whole and has bent over his lonely self, striving to protect it from the terrible threat of nothingness, who is desperate, and who has fallen head first from the level at which all things exist, only that man can find a refuge in action against the feeling of his own nation. This seems enough to show that, in the Romanian soul, action is evanescent, nonessential, intermediary, crisis linked, out of the ordinary, and based on temptation, which is quite opposite to that in the West, where it is permanent, and therefore reduced to everyday crises. This “slumber” impresses foreigners who come into contact with Romanians. Nous sommes aux portes de l’Orient, où tout est pris à la légère, said former French President Raymond Poincaré, who was punctilious and industrious, in a moment of aggressive disappointment. He saw Romanian judges unimpressed by his vast, structured arguments in the famous Hallier trial, when his lawyer's dilemmas, conclusions, and vigorous logic were fruitlessly trying to catch the smoke. Or closer to us: a true German cannot understand how come no railroad accidents occur in a country where nothing runs on schedule. As he is serious in all he does, he cannot understand how come people who smile and always seem to make fun of their positions and existence, which they do not take seriously – even when in danger – rather allow themselves to get killed than move from a place where an order has forgotten them! Thorough and respecting the absolute of the imperatives, these foreigners wonder how can an administration that humanizes the rules or some job done in restlessness, with a lot of energy but completely chaotically, be successful? Equally, a Slavic man has great difficulty in understanding our wish to get things clearly and not to be content with allusions. Similarly, an Anglo-Saxon cannot understand our capacity to act only after incorporating the deed into a principle or to think only after making the meaning of things very clear. These things are not understood and are considered drawbacks especially by mournful peoples, who have foolishly placed history above the Cosmos, demanding of man to take over godly powers. But these things are our spiritual goods, and we see no reason to change them just because some people do not like them. They add sweetness to our Romanian life, which the lives of others do not experience, they make man be at peace with himself and with nature, and give him balance and measure in his gestures, which, even if they may be devoid of tragic tension, are not devoid of nobleness. His face marked by the eternal Mass of his ritual action, the Romanian perhaps pays more attention to what the “lilies of the field and the birds of the air” teach us.