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Extract

I would like you to feel what it's like to face a revolution in the conception of the earth. What it does to the stomach, to the guts, to the wallet, to the mind, to the intelligence, to the morals; to the taste as well as to the disgust of living, to the hope of getting out of it.

Imagine being told that the world you thought you were in is nothing like the one you imagined. There you were quietly surrounded by objects with clearly defined shapes, a basin, a table, a chair, a towel, each well separated from the others, standing apart from each other, and all together inserted, as in a painting, inside a space independent of them; and there you are, in front of this spectacle of convenient and well-decoupled objects which only move if they are pushed or pulled. You have in your head a whole set of deep or superficial thoughts, and you feel quite distinct from all this assemblage of things, at the right distance, once again as if in front of a canvas.

You may see outside the leaves of a tree, the clouds that the wind blows across the sky, a dog wagging its tail, the outline of a mountain, but they too are at the right distance, objects among objects, all inserted in the infinite space, all distinctly painted, as in a painting by Vermeer.

And now things are getting more and more complicated. Do you realise what is happening? The animated ones no longer stand next to each other, but they start to overlap, drool on each other, mingle, intertwine. These beautiful and deep thoughts that you feel you have, it's a whole billion different bacteria and phages in your different intestines that allow you to maintain them. The landscape unravels; the painting fades away.

And also...