The Earth is flat

«These people are like the Chinese who, because they knew no one else, considered their country the square of the world and who painted the corners of this square with hideous grimaces and monsters, which were supposed to portray us, the pitiful inhabitants of the rest of the world. We laugh at the Chinese, and yet how often does it seem like one were [living] in China when one hears the opinions of persons who know the world only by the corner in which they are stuck and by the Hamburg Correspondent».

Johann Gottfried Herder, “Of the Changes in the Tastes of the Nations Through the Ages“, 1766.

***

«In olden days, even in Europe, the world was thought to be flat. And when some intelligent people claimed the opposite, they were exposed to various difficulties, such as being burnt alive. Today, even in Buddhist countries everybody knows, that the world is round. However, in Tibet, we still stubbornly state that the world is flat».

Gendun Choephel, newspaper article, “Tibet Mirror”, Kalimpong, 1938.

***

«In planetary being, the earth has become flat again. However, this leveling of dimensions previously filled by such powers, this flattening that reduces things and beings to the unidimensional—in a word, this nihilism, has the most bizarre effect: it revitalizes the elementary forces in the raw play of all their dimensions; it liberates the unthought nothing in a counter-power which is multidimensional play».

Gilles Deleuze, “Desert Islands…”

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