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Das Langweilige ist interessant geworden, weil das Interessante angefangen hat langweilig zu werden. – Thomas Mann

"Never for money/always for love" - The Talking Heads

Wednesday, February 04, 2009

Lamartines

Alphone de Lamartine, who knew Joseph de Maistre, described him, after he was dead, as being “large [d’une grande taille,], handsome and male of form and face.” Madame Swetchine, who also knew de Maistre, was taken aback by those lines: “M. de Lamartine says that he saw a lot of M. de Maistre. The number of those meetings makes it all the more surprising that his description of the man was misleading to such a degree. Not one touch was precise or faithful to the original. Count de Maistre was of middling size, and his features were irregular. There was nothing incisive in his eye, to which his short sightedness lent something lost in his gaze. This irregular, and not very brilliant face nevertheless had a majestic radiance.”

The witnesses summoned by the historians are all fed their lines by someone, usually the insatiable self, the vulgarian whose dirty fingers are even in our hot tears. Leaving fingerprints. Lamartine is the biggest goose of French literature, with his tedious lyrics and his lukewarm liberal politics. He is the very type of the sots from whom Baudelaire, later, begged in vain for a break to keep him from slipping into the abyss of want and madness. Madame Swetchine, bless her soul, did not reckon that there was a stye in Lamartine’s eye – his ego. The problem with history is that it is packed with Lamartines. The process is fucked, the jury is packed, the judge is limited by his caseload, his languages, his headache, his faulty hardons.

Any good carpenter knows a rotten two by four. Anyone with a nose for it knows a rotten fact. But we have to build with available materials.

Scholem’s picture of Jacob Frank is takes the picture of Frank that was promoted by, among others, Heinrich Graetz, who wrote a popular history of the Jews in the 1880s. Graetz even devoted a whole book to Frankism. In his history, Graetz wrote that “Jankiev Lejbovicz (that is, Jacob son of Leb) of Galicia, was one of the worst, most subtle, and most deceitful rascals of the eighteenth century.”

Graetz’s sketch is of a monster, a man who “boasted of …how he had duped his own father.” Yet Graetz’s sketch contains several of those rotten facts – for instance, Graetz ignores Frank’s father’s own adherence to the Sabbatain messianic cult. Graetz portrays Frank as a sort of Figaro or Sganarelle, alert for the scam, “traveling in Turkey in the service of a Jewish gentleman” . Others however have connected the Turkish travel with the study of the Kaballah, particularly the Zohar, which seems to have tied Frank to the Salonika community. In any case, much of this material is simply transmitted from one denunciation to another.

In 1967, Oskar K. Rabinowicz published an article on Frank in the Jewish Quarterly Review that reported his discovery of documents passed between Habsburg officials between Brno and Vienna, the most important of which was the testimony of a penitenti, a former Frankist.

Frank, with the great pomp that seemed to attend all of his arrivals, entered Brno, the capital of Moravia, with a train of 17 people in 1773. He immediately informed the authorities of his whereabouts, and presented three passports. He went to the Blauer Loewe, then took up quarters in the home of “freeman Pitsch.”

The entourage alarmed Brno officials. His story did too. He told them he “hailed from Smyrna”, with which he was connected on matters of business. In an interview with the police, he claimed to own grazing land in Poland and be a trader in livestock.

“Von Zollern reports further in the same document that his additional enquiries showed that Frank’s and his people’s behavior was beyond reproach, that they actually lived off his means, and that he had not contracted any debts.”

A year went by, and then the Brno officials received word from Vienna that this Frank had been accused of claiming to be the anti-Christ. He had been jailed in Czestochowa, and released in 1770.

Why the sudden interest? According to Rabinowicz, the Viennese officials were responding to a complaint lodged by Jacob Galinsky, a former follower. Galinsky’s immediate concern was that Frank owed him 1000 ducats. But Galinsky was more concerned that Frank was a devil. Concerned enough that he had sent letters to Marie Theresa, and that he sent documents to the Brno officials. According to Galinsky, Jacob Frank was born in Karlupke ‘as the son of a Jewish teacher who, having been found to be an adherent of Sabbatai Zevi, had lost his job and settled with his family in Wallachia”. This testimony is interesting in itself, in that there is another story about Frank’s heritage which has spread in the histories, in which it is claimed that Frank’s father was an innkeeper. There is obviously a Lamartine in our chain of evidence. However, as Galinsky is convinced that Frank is a very evil man, I’d give him some credit – besides which, he is a contemporary witness.

Galinsky, according to his own account, accepted Frank’s revelation of himself as Sabbatai Zevi – the shapeshifter messiah, who is now Islamic, now Christian, but in actuality remains hidden behind public ceremonies – like the Duke of Vienna in Measure for Measure, he is a Lord of Dark Corners.

It was in Warsaw that Galinsky started to become alienated from Frank. Frank had declared that none of his followers would die – much as Jesus did in the Gospels – and some did die. Death, Frank claimed, only showed that these followers had lacked faith. When complaints were made and Frank was sent to the jail/monastery in Czestochowa, Galinsky went with him. Then the second blow against Galinsky’s faith occurred – Frank’s wife died. After she died, “Frank began preaching immoral behavior, even acts against human nature. Galinsky became his open enemy, and returned to his own wife and child in Warsaw. His wife rejoined Frank in 1772, and had lived since then with Frank in Brno. Yet, while separated from Galinsky she nevertheless informed him about a Frankist plot to kill him and the other opponents of Frank.”

Finally, this is how Frank lived in Brno, according to Galinsky: all his servants were baptized Jews only. Every two weeks men and women arrived in Brno from all over the land, and brought Frank presents. These adherents wre so devoted to him that they kissed his feet, remained a few days near him, and then returned home.”

This report may seem damning, especially since Galinsky claimed he was even eager to confront Frank, should it be necessary. But, as Rabinowicz remarks, “an air of enlightenment” accompanied Joseph II’s accession to the throne, and the Vienna bureaucracy was now indifferent to sectarian disputes. They simply advised Zollner to keep a good eye on Frank.

Over the past three months, I’ve been dancing in many threads – that of suicide, that of free love, that of universal history. This thread is on the linki between libertinism and messianism.

3 comments:

northanger said...

AQ 202 = LAMARTINES = ZOHARITES.

AQ 297 = ALFRED JULES AYER (AQ-680 THE FOUNDATIONS OF EMPIRICAL KNOWLEDGE; AQ-342 SENSE AND SENSIBILIA) = JACOB FRANK IN BRNO.

AQ 340 = RESPLENDENT FOCUS = SENSE-DATA THEORIES.

AQ 342 = ILLOCUTIONARY ACT = SENSE AND SENSIBILIA.

00367 = LATIN CONSERVATISM = THE VIRGIN OF JUAREZ.

AQ 397 = SOCIALISM AND HUMANISM = WHAT IS ENLIGHTENMENT?

AQ 406 = CONSTATIVE UTTERANCE (AQ-342 ILLOCUTIONARY ACT) = FREEDOM AND ITS BETRAYAL (Isaiah Berlin; AQ-302 JOSEPH DE MAISTRE) = IL RICORDO DEL PRESENTE (AQ-227 PAOLO VIRNO).

AQ 448 = ILLOCUTIONARY NEGATION = PROVIDENTIAL OCCURRENCE (AQ-302 JOSEPH DE MAISTRE, AQ-508 CONSIDERATIONS SUR LA FRANCE).

AQ 526 = MARX'S CRITIQUE OF CAPITALISM = THE ACTION OF MEN ON ONE ANOTHER (AQ-336 THE GERMAN IDEOLOGY).

AQ 533 = L'EXAMEN DE LA PHILOSOPHIE DE BACON (AQ-302 JOSEPH DE MAISTRE) = THE PROPHETS OF BAAL IN THE ZONA.

AQ 539 = GENERATOR OF MODERN CAPITALISM ( AQ-402 MODERN TRADE UNIONISM) = THE PROPER FUNCTION OF WORDS (AQ-342 SENSE AND SENSIBILIA).

AQ 633 = ALCHEMY AND THE MASS OF THE HOLY GHOST = CE QUI N'EST PAS CLAIR, N'EST PAS FRANÇAIS (AQ-326 ANTOINE DE RIVAROL) = KANT'S OPENING PARAGRAPH OF THE ESSAY.

AQ 656 = FOLLOWING SOMEONE ELSES INITIATIVE (AQ-199 12 CHANGING TO 17) = THE PROGRESSIVE PHASES OF HUMANITY (AQ-202 LAMARTINES, AQ-1143 UNIVERSAL PRONOUNCING DICTIONARY OF BIOGRAPHY AND MYTHOLOGY).

AQ 672 = INSTRUMENT OF GOOD AND OF EVIL ON EARTH (AQ-508 CONSIDERATIONS SUR LA FRANCE, AQ-1378) = SUR L'UNIVERSALITÉ DE LA LANGUE FRANÇAISE (AQ-326 ANTOINE DE RIVAROL).

AQ 911 = THE MASTER-SPIRIT AND MODERATOR OF THE REVOLUTION (AQ-202 LAMARTINES, AQ-1143) = THE PRINCIPAL INSTRUMENT OF GOOD AND OF EVIL ON EARTH (AQ-508 CONSIDERATIONS SUR LA FRANCE, AQ-1378).

AQ 932 = AUSTIN CRITICISES SENSE-DATA THEORIES OF PERCEPTION (AQ-342 SENSE AND SENSIBILIA) = THERE IS OBVIOUSLY A LAMARTINE IN OUR CHAIN OF EVIDENCE (AQ-202 LAMARTINES).

AQ 1096 = CARL FRIEDRICH GRAF VON ZOLLERN, THE PREFECT OF THE BRNO DISTRICT = CONTRIBUTE TO THIS RESPLENDENT FOCUS OF UNIVERSAL POETRY (AQ-202 LAMARTINES, AQ-1143).

AQ 1160 = ENLIGHTENMENT IS MAN'S EMERGENCE FROM HIS SELF-IMPOSED IMMATURITY (AQ-840 ANSWERING THE QUESTION: WHAT IS ENLIGHTENMENT?) = 3.1415926535 8979323846 2643383279 5028841971 6939937510 5820974944 5923078164 0628620899 8628034825 3421170679 8214808651 3282306647 0938446095 5058223172 5359408128 4811174502 8410270193 8521105559 6446229489 5493038196 4428810975 6659334461 2847564823 3786783165 2712019091 45648 = ANALYSIS OF THE ACTIONS OF THE ELEMENTARY PARTICLES OF THE SYSTEM (AQ-335 SYSTEMS BEHAVIOR, AQ-768 THE GEOPHILOSOPHIES OF DELEUZE AND GUATTARI) = AND THOU CANST NOT STAY IN THIS PLACE TO BEHOLD HOW I RUN AND RETURN (The Cry of the 6th Aethyr, Which is Called MAZ :: But thou that art with me in the spirit-vision art not with me by right of Attainment, and thou canst not stay in this place to behold how I run and return, and who are the flies that are caught in my web. For I am the inmost guardian that is immediately before the shrine; AQ-4508) = ATTAINED HIS BY PROFOUND STUDY OF ANTIQUITY AND ITS MYSTERIES (AQ-212 HŒNÉ WRONSKI, AQ-227 FABRE D'OLIVET, AQ-397 FIRST CARD OF THE TAROT) = ATTRACTORS THUS REPRESENT PATTERNS OF BEHAVIOR OF THE SYSTEM (AQ-197 ATTRACTOR; AQ-376 PATTERNS OF BEHAVIOR, AQ-454 EMPIRICAL GEOPHILOSOPHY) = IN DREAMS HUMOUR SEEMS EVIL, DOES NOT MAKE US LAUGH AND LEAVES US COLD (None of the pleasures wit is capable of providing is ever attained in a dream. In dreams humour seems evil, does not make us laugh and leaves us cold. Wit, like lapsus, is also an alternative way of insulting people in 'civil' society. (AQ-836 VI INVITO A RUTTARE ALLA SALUTE DEL NOSTRO CAPO). Based on counterfactual reasoning, wit rescues paralogisms from the realm of errors and rehabilitates them in AQ-354 LINGUISTIC PRAXIS; AQ-555 MOTTO DI SPIRITO PAOLO VIRNO) = IT IS BETTER TO HAVE ENGLISHMEN RUNNING THE WORLD THAN FOREIGNERS (AQ-355 JOHN MAYNARD KEYNES) = LET ME GIVE YOU MY INTERPRETATION OF THE CIRCUMSTANTIAL EVIDENCE (AQ-409 THE END OF SCIENCE FICTION) = THE BATTLE FOR GOD: FUNDAMENTALISM IN JUDAISM, CHRISTIANITY AND ISLAM (AQ-300 KAREN ARMSTRONG) = THE ZONA PELLUCIDA IS ESSENTIAL FOR OOCYTE DEATH AND FERTILIZATION (In humans, five days after the fertilization, the blastocyst performs zona hatching; the zona pellucida degenerates and decomposes to be replaced by the underlying layer of trophoblastic cells. The zona pellucida is essential for oocyte death and fertilization.; AQ-256 ZONA PELLUCIDA).

AQ 1180 = ENLIGHTENMENT IS MAN'S EMERGENCE FROM HIS SELF-INCURRED IMMATURITY (AQ-840 ANSWERING THE QUESTION: WHAT IS ENLIGHTENMENT?) = A SMALLER SURFACE IS REQUIRED TO SUSTAIN A GIVEN WEIGHT WITH A SCREW = ALL THESE OLD LETTERS OF MY BOOK ARE ARIGHT; BUT [TZADDI] IS NOT THE STAR = ASSERT THE DIVISION OF THE GREAT ALL INTO THREE ENTITIES OR WORLDS (AQ-212 HŒNÉ WRONSKI, AQ-227 FABRE D'OLIVET, AQ-397 FIRST CARD OF THE TAROT) = BRENNER'S ARGUMENT THAT CAPITALISM BEGAN IN THE ENGLISH COUNTRYSIDE (AQ-490 FINAL WORDS ON BRENNER/WOOD) = CHASING THE MYSTERY IN THE FUGITIVE, HALF-LIGHTED THINGS OUTSIDE US (D.H. Lawrence) = DON'T STRUGGLE HULK. I JUST WANT TO GIVE YOU YOUR WILDEST DREAMS = INTELLIGENCE CAN ONLY GET YOU SO FAR WHEN YOU HAVE TO SAVE THE WORLD (AQ-225 THE LIBRARIAN) = PROVOCATIVE IMAGES AND A STYLE THAT IS BOTH ENTERTAINING AND LYRICAL (AQ-560 THE NEW YORK TIMES BOOK REVIEW, AQ-285 THOMAS LIGOTTI) = SHOWED SOMETHING NEW TO AN EDITOR WHO THOUGHT HE'D SEEN EVERYTHING (AQ-178 ROB LIEFELD) = THE HEAVENLY NYMPHS [APSARAS] OF HINDU MYTHOLOGY WERE SWAN MAIDENS (AQ-136 RINALDO) = THE PERVASIVE MACHINERY THROUGH WHICH THIS IMPULSE IS PROPAGATED (AQ-352 THE BODY OF FOUCAULT).

AQ 1261 = LAMARTINE DEVANT L'HÔTEL DE VILLE DE PARIS LE 25 FÉVRIER 1848 REFUSE LE DRAPEAU ROUGE = PROPOSAL, NOT TO ENGAGE THE CLERGY ANY LONGER WHEN MARRIAGES ARE CONDUCTED (AQ-840 ANSWERING THE QUESTION: WHAT IS ENLIGHTENMENT?).

AQ 3156 = HIS HARANGUE TO THE SEDITIOUS AND INFURIATED BANDS WHO DEMANDED THE RED FLAG INSTEAD OF THE TRICOLOURED (FEBRUARY 25) WAS ONE OF THE MOST REMARKABLE TRIUMPHS OF ELOQUENCE RECORDED IN HISTORY = YOU RUN AND TELL YOUR FRIENDS THAT YOU'RE LEAVING ME / THEY SAY THAT THEY DON'T SEE WHAT YOU SEE IN ME / YOU WAIT A COUPLE MONTHS THEN YOU GON' SEE / YOU'LL NEVER FIND NOBODY BETTER THAN ME (AQ-188 HEARTLESS).

AQ 1484 = AUFKLÄRUNG IST DER AUSGANG DES MENSCHEN AUS SEINER SELBST VERSCHULDETEN UNMÜNDIGKEIT (AQ-741 BEANTWORTUNG DER FRAGE: WAS IST AUFKLÄRUNG?) = FALLING INTO THE PATH OF A CATACLYSMIC DISASTER THAT BOTH PRECEDED THEM AND OVERTOOK THEM (AQ-291 THE UNNAMED ZONE) = MATTHEW 16:16 AND SIMON PETER ANSWERED AND SAID, THOU ART THE CHRIST, THE SON OF THE LIVING GOD (AQ-167 MATTHEW 16:16) = THIS IS ONE OF THE SIMPLEST OF THE CARDS; IT REPRESENTS HERU-RA-HA, THE LORD OF THE NEW AEON (AQ-225 XIX. THE SUN).

AQ 1555 = IMMATURITY IS THE INABILITY TO USE ONE'S UNDERSTANDING WITHOUT GUIDANCE FROM ANOTHER (AQ-840 ANSWERING THE QUESTION: WHAT IS ENLIGHTENMENT?) = CAPITAL, AS REGARDS SUBSTANCE, OBJECTIFIED LABOUR. ITS ANTITHESIS LIVING, PRODUCTIVE LABOUR = FOR INSTANCE, THE DOMINATION OR PUTTING TO WORK OF ONE BODY BY ANOTHER IN A FIXED HIERARCHY (AQ-582 EMPIRICAL GEOPOLITICAL DIMENSION, AQ-768 THE GEOPHILOSOPHIES OF DELEUZE AND GUATTARI) = SUPPLYING U.S. POWER VIA DRAGTHROUGH CABLE IS BEING STUDIED AS A POTENTIAL FUTURE OPTION (AQ-55 TEC).

AQ 1614 = SMASHING THE MACHINES AND APPEALING TO THE STATE TO RESUME THE OLD MODES OF SETTLING DIFFERENCES (AQ-402 MODERN TRADE UNIONISM) = UNMÜNDIGKEIT IST DAS UNVERMÖGEN, SICH SEINES VERSTANDES OHNE LEITUNG EINES ANDEREN ZU BEDIENEN (AQ-741 BEANTWORTUNG DER FRAGE: WAS IST AUFKLÄRUNG?, AQ-1555).

Yonathan David said...

Great work.

pascale said...

I thought you might be interested in learning about OUR Jewish traditions which embrace the real Christ. We are the Frankist Association of America. One of our members has a new book out:

http://www.amazon.com/Real-Messiah-Throne-Origins-Christianity/dp/1906787123/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1245892844&sr=8-1

These are our teachings passed on through generations. If you can't afford the book you can see the website of one of our teachers - www.stephanhuller.blogspot.com.

Shalom

Beth El Jacob Frank