“This world is not a realm that admits to a solution…” Leonard Cohen

I think that this world is not a realm that admits to a solution. That isn’t what this world is about. It’s a different kind of activity that we have here. We have to deal with good and evil continually. With joy and despair, with all the antinomies, all the opposites and contraries. That’s what our life is about. We can’t abdicate that. I, myself, am not attracted to the easy solution, the dogmatic solution. I think that when you have large numbers of people attracted to the dogmatic solution, you get a very static, solid kind of society that is quite unpleasant to live in. That’s why I like our society. Nobody can quite dominate it.quotedown2

Leonard Cohen


From “Songs and Thoughts of Leonard Cohen” by Robert O’Brian (RockBill, September 1987). Photo of Leonard Cohen by Pete Purnell. Originally posted Sep 18, 2010 at DrHGuy.com, a predecessor of Cohencentric.

Leonard Cohen on the obsolescence of descriptions like conservative, liberal… “in the face of the catastrophe that everybody’s really dealing with”

In 1993, when Leonard Cohen appeared on the BBC TV show, Later with Jools Holland, the host asked if he believed he was an optimistic person. Leonard’s reply is as pertinent, penetrating, and powerful today as it was then.

Everybody’s kind of hanging onto their broken orange crate in the flood, and when you pass someone else, to declare yourself an optimist or a pessimist, or pro-abortion or against abortion, or a conservative or a liberal, these descriptions are obsolete in the face of the catastrophe that everybody’s really dealing with.quotedown2

Leonard Cohen


Originally posted January 25, 2009 at DrHGuy.com, a predecessor of Cohencentric

“It’s a mistake to blame things on other people, especially your parents. Everybody suffers, but growing up involves forgiving – not using relationships as an alibi.” Leonard Cohen

Leonard Cohen & his mother, Masha. Photo courtesy of Leonard Cohen.

Leonard Cohen: Thoughts Of A Ladies’ Man by Elizabeth M. Thomson. 1979 interview reposted to FolkTracks: Jan 12, 2017.

“I think we should row with both oars…the intellect and the emotions.” Leonard Cohen

You seem to completely trust the emotions. The emotional response. Does this imply that you distrust the intellectual response?

I don’t want to present myself as some kind of anti-intellectual fascist. There’s a lot of that going on today and it’s a very fashionable position. I think we should row with both oars. There’s the intellect and the emotionsquotedown2

Leonard Cohen


From Having Lunch With Leonard Cohen by Jon Wilde, Sabotage Times. Dec 3, 2015 (the quote itself is taken from a 1988 interview). Photo of Leonard Cohen by Roland Godefroy (Own work) [GFDL or CC BY 3.0], via Wikimedia Commons.

“I think it’s the best position for a human” Leonard Cohen On Being A Beautiful Loser

In an old interview you end up saying, “There are still beautiful losers and I am one.” Today what can you say? Do you still feel like a beautiful loser?

I think it’s the best position for a human. I wrote in another song A Thousand Kisses Deep, [Leonard translating himself into French] “And summoned now to deal / With your invincible defeat.” Invincible defeat. Everyone at a certain point is up against invincible defeat, and you have to deal with that fact: invincible defeat. quotedown2

Leonard Cohen


Meeting with Leonard Cohen – Interview by Albert Labbouz  Translation and adaptation: Dr. Marc Gaffié (Patrice Clos: “Throughout the conversation, Leonard spoke mainly in French but also in English. It is this synthesis of the two languages ​​that was absolutely necessary.”) Paris, June 29, 2001. Published in French; this excerpt via Google Translate.

“I feel that, more and more, I need to be strong and cheerful, to greet the daily events, the daily abrasions that seem to greet me.” Leonard Cohen

Leonard Cohen…What’s Your Problem? Doom and Gloom by Patrick Humphries (Vox: February, 1993).  Originally posted Oct 20, 2014 at DrHGuy.com, a predecessor of Cohencentric