Letter from Stanisław Ignacy Witkiewicz written 01/02.03.1938
Honoured and Dear Professor:
Thank you very much for commissioning the delivery of the book for which I sent the payment. Thank you also for having contributed to the printing of my abridged paper, which gave me quite a pleasure. Cornelius wrote that he did not understand what Ajdukiewicz was talking about in his writings. Kotarbiński said the same (and to him [Ajdukiewicz] too, for which he brutally “scolded” him). Since this sparked my curiosity, I bought two volumes of the Encyclopedia of Education to find out a little bit about this phenomenon. Thank you for your intention to send my MS to Z[akopane] and I apologize for the TR[rouble], but I will bear all the CST[costs]. You may graciously keep On R[ealism] and Id[ealism] until you read it. I would be very interested in your thoughts on this subject. I continue my polemic with Leszczynski and I am drawing worse and worse conclusions about the subject of idealism. Also, if you can, kindly send me the manuscript of the abridged text in French. I would like to send it to Cornelius. The old man feels great, he is taking up philosophy again under the influence of the “Polnische Reise” [German: “Polish journey”] and he is building a new study. We have to take an example from this and not age prematurely. But he does not smoke and he drinks 2 doses of beer a day. I implore you, do not begin to smoke. I am now writing to you while (S[moking]) and I feel a hide-oh-ous [sic] failure – tomorrow I will stop for an unlimited time – unless the war comes. I have to write for the Ph[ilosophical] R[eview] a criticism of this Świderski, which is a hopeless thing. (The Foundations of [Organic Philosophy], etc.) He probably sent it to you. Then I will take up Carnap. I have a lot of interesting reading in front of me: Woodgen’s biology (anti-mech[anistic]), Campbell’s phil[osophy] of physics. Now I’m reading Geiger about the subconscious – a wise fellow á mon avis [in my opinion]. But I have a bad feeling about this year. A prophecy of kicking the bucket during the 54th year of life – it’s a bit early, just at the entrance into a new era of life and work. Zakopane is now hideous – rain and slush, after a few days of a wonderful winter. The financial outlook is mediocre.
ERFB [I enclose words of respect and friendship for you both] F.G. [family greetings] 3W [Your faithful Witkacy].
Have you heard about Helwig? Szumcio recommended him to me. They were both very nice. The sickness, during which he looked death in the eye, made him much better.