Harold Pinter in 2005 Nobel Address: The US “Brutal, Indifferent, Scornful” Manipulator of Truth


When we look into a mirror we think the image that confronts us is accurate. But move a millimeter and the image changes. We are actually looking at a never-ending range of reflections. But sometimes a writer has to smash the mirror – for it is on the other side of that mirror that the truth stares at us.

I believe that despite the enormous odds which exist, unflinching, unswerving, fierce intellectual determination, as citizens, to define the real truth of our lives and our societies is a crucial obligation which devolves upon us all. It is in fact mandatory.

If such a determination is not embodied in our political vision we have no hope of restoring what is so nearly lost to us – the dignity of man.

OffGuardian

In 2005, Harold Pinter, British playwright, screenwriter and actor, who famously refused a knighthood in the 1990s, was awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature. This is his Nobel address. It’s to his eternal credit that he used this platform, not for self-promotion, but to draw attention to what he saw as vital questions of truth and ethics, life and death in the geopolitical world

Transcript

In 1958 I wrote the following:

There are no hard distinctions between what is real and what is unreal, nor between what is true and what is false. A thing is not necessarily either true or false; it can be both true and false.

I believe that these assertions still make sense and do still apply to the exploration of reality through art. So as a writer I stand by them but as a citizen I cannot. As a citizen I must ask: What…

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23 thoughts on “Harold Pinter in 2005 Nobel Address: The US “Brutal, Indifferent, Scornful” Manipulator of Truth

    1. Rosaliene,

      Harold Pinter’s 2005 Nobel address in accepting the prize for literature remains one of the most profound expositions on war and peace of all time. Those who read and listen to his words, made more powerful in that he’s clearly in the late-stage process of dying, will understand through his example what it means to speak the brutal, difficult and disturbing truth, and what level of personal courage is necessary for taking action which effectively diminishes war on Earth. Such an example of highest-level artistic, spiritual and intellectual brilliance is extremely rare. Harold Pinter raised the bar of moral excellence in 2005 with his address, leaving humanity with a new vision, a clear gold standard to emulate and from which to rise higher.

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  1. This is the 2nd towering personality I never heard of before, with an intimidate knowledge of the word, coming into my life this week.

    What a powerful Indictment of the United States! It’s becoming increasingly evident to the World, US Power is reaching a critical stage these 12 years after this remarkable speech at the Nobel Institute, and is not reformed yet.
    Mr. Pinter won for Literature, but his speech was the speech of a Nobel Peace Prize winner.

    People remain blind to what’s really happening, distracted by the incessant 24 hour cable News propagating for the Power, not speaking Truth to it.

    Where is the Common Sense? It’s Publicly known the priority of the CURRENT US government is more money channelled into the forces of Death and Destruction, and the money taken away from the Department whose role is supposed to work even harder to ensure the weapons are not unleashed in the World. The reality of those FACTS speak for themselves on the possible/probable Future of our Common World. We ignore it’s happening Now, at our own Future peril.

    Like Jonah in the whale story, fleeing from doing what had to be said and done, no one these days wants to be a buzzkill, and point out the unfolding realities in this material World. The People are locked into the latest distraction. Smart phones, while the People remain dumb in both senses of the Word.

    Just the other Day I learned about a fellow Canadian for the 1st Time. After watching the video of him being interviewed on British TV, I had to make this comment on it.
    “I’m Canadian, and this is the 1st Time I heard of Dr. Peterson, and all I can say is better late than never.
    He was totally brilliant in this contest. The Interviewer put so many of her words in Jordan’s mouth, he corrected her with calm reason, Intelligence and self-discipline that actually enabled him to present his case clearly, confidently, and concisely. It was awesome to watch, thinking in my 74th year, I should be so good and exact in the Word as he showed himself in Debate.”

    This man is brilliant, and an ideal example of a believer in the ‘Word made Flesh’ and to be emulated. He speaks the unvarnished Truth without guile, telling it like it is.

    Exploring Jordan Peterson’s YouTube Channel, there’s way too much to see and absorb in a Day or a Week. I started watching ‘Biblical Series I: Introduction to the Idea of God.’ Today will be my 3rd, 30 minute segment of a non stop, 2-1/2 hour logical extenuation without notes, spoken from the heart.

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    1. Ray,

      We think Mr. Peterson’s being described as totally brilliant is an over-estimate based/influenced on your Christian beliefs. What we find with Mr. Peterson is an academic who focuses on “safe” topics which pose no ultimate personal risk for himself; for example the man doesn’t seem to have any opinion about war and peace issues, but engages in lengthy discussions which in the end are “neither here nor there”. This is not to criticize the fact he and yourself are Christian advocates, far from it, but as the man’s talks relate to effective positive change on Earth for humanity, from that measure or context, they seem to go off on weak or impotent, overly intellectualized tangents to nowhere. This is our honest opinion.

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      1. Jerry, my 1st introduction to Jordan Peterson was the Channel 4 interview posted above, on Wednesday. At that point in Time, I was not aware of his Faith. I discovered that later as I explored his YouTube page with 287 videos so far. I respectfully suggest you go through the list of his videos, and you might change your assessment?
        https://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=jordan+peterson

        Considering your dissenting opinion, from what I have seen so far, I still think he is brilliant by this Dictionary definition, particularly point 2b;

        1 : very bright : glittering; a brilliant light
        2 a : striking, distinctive; a brilliant example
        b : distinguished by unusual mental keenness or alertness

        He is a Clinical Psychologist, so his work is changing the Individual’s way of thinking, and interpreting situations. He is only now gaining a mass audience, and if that grows, he may effect a much greater positive change on earth for humanity than you see at this point?

        I believe in some situations the minority could be right and the majority wrong, but having 665,941 subscribers to his You Tube Channel and perusing some of the comments on his talks, do put you in a minority POV.

        There is a 20 minute video on the Israeli-Palestinian issue, and I am waiting to watch that with a friend who is Executive Director of the Ontario Civil Liberties Association. I haven’t got to the end of all his videos yet. Many are hours long, and it’s hard for anyone to sit still alone and maintain focus and interest. I have watched several of the 10 minutes or less ones.

        You have my curiosity in knowing who “we” is, you use on a few occasions?

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        1. Ray,

          Our use of the words “we”, “our” etc., as opposed to “I”, “my”, “mine”, “me” etc., came about through a developed appreciation over time of the concept that holds the high importance of eliminating egoism or self-centered aspects of one’s personality to facilitate spiritual growth. Of course, then, one has to avoid engaging in spiritual boasting or bragging, sometimes termed having a spirituality superiority complex. 🙂

          The “silo effect” nature of academia describes the condition where very accomplished, learned men and women in the various academic disciplines are unaware except for knowledge gained through the study in their particular discipline. For example the world’s foremost expert on the history of Hawaii has knowledge gained through intense study of Hawaii and Hawaiian people and the history of that region, but ask that expert what he or she thinks about Gandhi’s spiritual beliefs and they haven’t the slightest idea. Here is where our unbiased, non-prejudiced, critical assessment of Mr. Peterson derives. This assessment is in no manner meant to depreciate or diminish the man’s intellectual accomplishments as clearly he’s spent considerable time involved in intense study, as have the men and women who’ve ended up in their particular academic silos.

          Perhaps we are able to “cut to the chase” regarding Mr. Peterson by identifying his main intention(s) through examination of his own uttered words. Ray, can you recall something Mr. Peterson specifically said which resulted in an “aha!” moment or moments for you? What is that “effect a much greater positive change” you mention in relation to Mr. Peterson?

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          1. Jerry, I believe God changes hearts and minds one person at a Time. If Dr. Peterson is able to impart a concept of individual responsibility to the whole. not just ti the Id, that, in Time, could have a profound positive effect in ‘changing the world’ as we all want to do in some respect or another. That starts with the Individual changing him-herself.

            I admire his Inquiring Mind and I’m still striving to be perfect in The Word, and i have to acknowledge, from what I have seen so far, Dr. Peterson has put it into practise better than I have accomplished these years since I was Born again February 1, 1975, and he’s younger than me. But then again, the record tells us the great Moses was ‘slow of speech.’ That raises the question in me, did Aaron his brother, always get the right sense in interpreting Moses’ words?

            On your answer to my specific question, I had the same outlook when I was awakened to the Living God. It’s in the September 13, 1976 Kansas City Times record, “We got to Kansas City,” he began, and when asked explained that “we” was “the Spirit and I.” 🙂

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  2. I regret not having time to watch the entire video, but I have something to say on the subject of truth, or any other virtue or vice for that matter. There is a way for anyone, however simple of language and education such as myself to the most erudite to know without fail what is true, what is not. I am not writing here about observable “data” but about the connection between reality and feeling. Truth is determined by how something affects another. Do my thoughts, words or deeds spread discord or harm, or do they spread peace or healing? What is my motivation? What are my intents? There is the truth.

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    1. Sha’Tara,

      The late Native American medicine man/spiritual healer Rolling Thunder said, “The most basic principle of all is that of not harming others, and that means all people, all life and all things.” Clearly, such universal truth has yet to become recognized, acknowledged and accepted by a sufficient percentage of humanity to overcome the brutality so unforgettably described by the late Harold Pinter. That statement by Rolling Thunder aligns with the distilled truths of all genuine spiritual paths, with the shared basis or foundational belief that all is sacred, all is God.

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      1. Jerry, in my view, your last sentence above is saying this in other words.
        Thus says the LORD, The heaven is my throne, and the earth is my footstool: where is the house that you build unto me? and where is the place of my rest? -Isaiah 66:1

        If the foot that touches the footstool is holy, it makes the whole earth holy, not just that small sliver of the earth that has been the reason for so much Death and Bloodshed over the Centuries.

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        1. Ray,

          The concept of oneness has the foundational, spiritual/philosophical basis which asserts all, including the vast immeasurable universe, is holy and/or sacred without exception.

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          1. And I see in the Biblical lesson upstream, Dr. Peterson is essentially saying the same thing, and getting many, many converts as they understand his explanations. Jesus was Baptized by John.

            Every Individual has a separate but equal value in making up the Mystical Body of Christ, even though we have different functions and greater or lessor talents and roles.

            [21] To him that overcomes will I grant to sit with me in my throne, even as I also overcame, and am set down with my Father in his throne. -Revelation 3.

            I’m still in the process of overcoming, even though I’ve overcome a lot of my old, self-centred, money and things materialistic ways, as I grow/transform in looking at things from a God-centred perspective.

            I’m still wrestling with the fact I see some people claiming belief in the same Christ Jesus and God I believe in, espousing totally opposite values, and I have to wonder, ” God! How could people think that way?” I also have to recognize those people might say the same thing to God about me?

            I take it as a cardinal rule, ‘they who exalt themselves will be humbled, and they who humble themselves will be exalted.’

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    1. Sha’Tara,

      The commonly conveyed sentiment of NDErs comes to mind when talking about what happened, where many agree the human language doesn’t have the words to accurately and/or fully describe their experiences on the other side. From a cosmic perspective which includes everything in the spiritual, material and any other potential or yet undiscovered realms, a perspective of oneness, it seems safe to say describing life on Earth (material) is equally challenging with regard to selection of the correct descriptive words. Did we say that right? 🙂

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      1. Earth man’s verbal languages are grunts compared to the universal thought-form communication. As you say, ND’ers come face to face with the pre-Babel language. In instants they grasp truths of such immensity, they scramble to translate some of it in their own language, which fails and so they create images of what they expect to see “after death” and it’s a bit like a baby settling down sucking its thumb. The thumb represents all that is good. Earth languages are thumb sucking basically, they really explain nothing, just satisfying a need to verbally share experiences that cannot be demonstrated.

        In the universal language one thought form, dropped into the mind in an instant, if grasped and held, can be peeled and opened and enjoyed for days, weeks, even years. One thought form! Since that experience of 1979, and subsequently spending much time with the Teachers who use the universal language, I’ve had to learn to speed up my translation and become much more accurate with my description. I’ve found myself “correcting” people when they use apparent synonyms that aren’t synonyms at all, they just seem so because of the laziness of minds in extracting the real meaning of a term. I’ll give you one: love and compassion seem similar in intent, yet are actually diametrically opposite. One is reciprocal, the other is free. One is give and take, the other is give. Unconditional love is an oxymoron designed to confuse people and keep them from reaching for compassion. It’s an artificial substitute that is guaranteed to fail in the end – that’s its purpose.

        If we sourced the meaning of the many terms we use; if we peeled them and exposed them, we would be astounded at how we constantly lie to ourselves with the terms we bandy about. If we understood history we would never use the term “God” in any kind of positive sense: it possesses none. If we needed a term that spoke of sacred oneness, we would obviously, naturally, use Life.

        So to answer your question, life on earth, as “on” everywhere else and cosmically speaking is Life and that should mean that all is sacred. Living (existing) on earth makes an intelligent person question that. There are many aspects of Life that have fallen below the sacred into the profane and cursed. This universe is based on the duality principle. Every time you make a claim to one aspect, there is, or you create, its opposite. The sacred has its opposite and there’s the conundrum of living earth-style. The more “holy” a person becomes, the more of her own “unholy” she has to confront, contain, control, constantly transform back into an energy she can use to express her compassion to the world.

        After all that, what have I really explained? Not much if anything, for what I mean to say, I cannot. I know it but I cannot express it in a way that leaves no room for argument.

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      2. Jerry, In reply to you and Sha’Tara, God and Life are synonymous to my way of thinking since February 1,1975. Before that, all there was was living and dying and the body turns to dust forever as in an Eternal ceasing to exist.

        Before my Faith, I thought the most Powerful being in existence was the President of the United States. I knew the world was messed up, (I was going to use the F word for the comprehension most people know), but that’s just the way it is and there was nothing I could do about it, like the majority think. I would just live my own life with blinders on.

        When I was awakened from being one of the walking Dead, just going to the Grave, it no longer made sense to me the world should be so messed up, and I had to find out what part I could play in waking people up?

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        1. Acting from the standpoint of eternity or the soul’s infinite nature allows the overcoming of any fear of retaliation, up to and including physical death. Engaging in the spiritual battle of good and evil against the powers and principalities in high places with eternity and life’s ephemeral reality in mind removes all fear; the soul is forever, death is a myth, and those who manage to grasp that understanding, likely including Harold Pinter, become willing to travel where their true consciences guide them.

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          1. Forasmuch then as the children are partakers of flesh and blood, he also himself likewise took part of the same; that through death he might destroy him that had the power of death, that is, the devil;
            And deliver them who through fear of death were all their lifetime subject to bondage.
            For verily he took not on him the nature of angels; but he took on him the seed of Abraham.
            Hebrews 2

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        2. Well Ray, I think I can honestly say I understand where you come from, being an ex-born again myself – give me some credit, I lasted 4 years of evangelical brainwashing and hypocrisy, and after being raised in fundamentalist Catholicism (yes, there is such a monster!). The problem with the God discussion is it ends up in two things: endless arguments that push both participants apart, or one finally shuts down into silence and no longer responds. Nothing positive comes of it. It is the lost who can’t find their own mind, their own self-empowerment, the sheeple, who respond to evangelicalism, the carrot on the stick, the promise of free and cheap salvation, even though Jesus explicitly warned against such, that’s all that’s left of Christianity, that and money, of course.

          I now think I know things I think I didn’t know before my break with all religions, whether they be of God, Politics or Money, the three legged power stool of the System. God isn’t life but I know God exists, and I don’t need faith to know that: you, or should I say Christianity, Islam, Judaism and spin-offs are the proof. That is also why I claim that God is a negative aspect within life. God is a man-made concept which in the good ol’ days was called an idol. God does absolutely nothing that a mind, or groups of minds, haven’t already done through military force, bribing, extorting, science and technology, propaganda and subsequent endless brainwashing.

          People who rely on faith need to evangelize to draw others into their web because they doubt and they feel that a new addition filled with zeal and undoubting will strengthen their own waning faith. It’s pure psychology. But what do I know? I know that I’m with Jerry on this: that we are eternal beings (although my terminology changes again, not by soul which is a religious concept, but by mind) and we go on, experiencing life, learning to make it work better and adding to it. That is why those who know such a thing through their own understanding and self empowerment struggle to change themselves. For Jerry and I, no Great Wizard at the door waiting to magically change an evil, greedy, extortioner, rapist, war-mongering religious God-believing type into a paragon of virtue. Can’t happen, won’t happen, but good luck with it.

          In case you wonder where I get my examples of “evil, greedy, extortioner, rapist, war-mongering religious… etc., just cast a casual glance into the White House and in the Major Houses of fundamentalist TV evangelists. That should explain it.

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          1. Sha’Tara, I’m with you on a lot of what you say. I wrote an article titled ‘THE IMPERIAL POPE’ posting it to my Blog February 26, 2011.

            At that Time, I embedded a video of Francis of Assisi in his poverty, appearing before the Pope and the splendour of Rome. From the poverty of Christ, the way to Power and Wealth was through the Church in those Times, and still is these Days for the people you mention. Perhaps more than anyone else, I was so wonderfully surprised when, 2 years later, Francis was Pope.

            I’m concerned with the influence the Evangelicals have .on Trump. All he wants is unquestioned devotion without criticism and the Evangelicals have made it an article of Faith in the Church of the Americanized Jesus in denial of the Universal Christ, to support Trump. They give him that base, but he appoints their Fundamentalist Christian trained Lawyers, to lifetime positions to the Supreme and other Federal Courts. Slowly, but surely, this will change the Courts system to implement a Christian version of Sharia Law, bypassing the US Congress.

            The Apostle Paul warned about Simony, using the Gospel of Christ to make money. He makes a point of saying he worked to support his own cost of living when he stayed in the same place for a while. Those aspects of Paul are not applied Today as the Universal Kingship and Priesthood of Christ has morphed in to a man made hierarchy.

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