“Woe, Woe” Ansaldo (28 March 1989, Pt IV)

Part One

The next question was from Giovanni: “For me, the last seven months I think, I’ve been very identified with my outside life trying to improve my situation. I haven’t done much in the way of the work, now, I come each week and I listen to what everybody says, and when it comes to the morning for some reason or other, I’m always running late. There is always an excuse to not to work.”

“Yes, you’ve been very busy, you been trying to fulfil your life obligations. So, it’s not surprising you find it difficult to find time for this unusual work. But you could find a little time. Do that. Come. Some of your efforts have been rewarded.What you got you could lose, so you should work, and you’ve noticed that you get identified, and it is good to see that.”

“Why is it that I have to hear you say these things before I can see the positive side of what’s happening? I always look on the downside.”

“You may have a tendency, but the fact is that you don’t stop and think. Here you’re stopped. If you start rushing out of the door you won’t be able to come back. So we’re influenced here. When we’re together like this a better quality of the attention is, to some degree, available under these conditions. What is said, is sometimes heard, but not if I’m asleep, not if I’m wandering, then it isn’t heard.”

“You could answer that question yourself, if you just give it a little time. It doesn’t want a great deal of time. It’s only useful to bring a question to make you, to bring you to the present circumstance. I always want to have in every question a now, what is the question now? It’s always the present circumstances, because the past I can’t change, and the future depends upon now, and I never think of now. This is very instant, I say why, then I must think now.”

“Don’t spend time wondering why. I’ve got the question already, so I identify with it instead of thinking. For a special kind of thought you have to think very quick. It doesn’t mean you have to be tense. If you’re well balanced, the thought can go wonderfully, so be patient. Higher thought goes very quickly. So, you’ve got to be very careful to try and get in a good balance. A few minutes in this way can be equal to days.”

“See, the mind has three parts, it has the moving part, it has the feeling part, and it has the intellectual part. But the mind also has higher levels. If you could be quiet and make contact with a higher level or become aware of it, think you’ll find quite a different quality of thought. The other thought exists too, the other thought will tell you if your eggs are boiling. Your lower mind is good enough to think of boiling your eggs in a pot with a whistle on it. But the higher mind is not made for that, the other thought may not notice that at all. So, I need to have different levels of thought.”

Giovanni added: “There’s something else I noticed, when I come here, always, I have the feeling that there’s something been trying to hide.”

“Do you? Yes, you consider. You feel you come without having done much work, and you don’t want to appear as a person who hasn’t done much. You come without a question, more or less, and then you’re on the spot: what sort of a question do you have? None? Then it wants to hide. That’s why, but you’re not alone. That in itself is useful again. But don’t forget that you come, you actually come, and this is a fact. So, what are my thoughts going around and round about? The unreality of everything and the fact that I don’t? It’s a sort of moaning business.”

“It gets very serious you know,” said Giovanni, “I feel the tension on my face.”

“But it isn’t serious, it’s heavy and useless. Yes, don’t forget your compatriot, that famous journalist. His name was Ansaldo, and they nicknamed him “Woe-Woe Ansaldo,” because his articles were always miserable.”

Part Two

What Mr Adie said here continues and expands his answer to Pablo in the previous post, featuring his question about self-pity. Then, the question of being “serious” would recur in the very next question. Mr Adie’s reference to “Woe, Woe” Ansaldo was intriguing, and added a certain colour. It would be a risk to get lost in the example, and equally, it would be a risk not to understand what Mr Adie was referring to. This is what two Australian newspapers said about him: in 1944, during WWII


LONDON, May 16 (Special)— ‘Woe, Woe’ Ansaldo, former editor of the late Count Ciano’s newspaper Telegrafo, has been sent to a concentration camp, reports the German Telegraph Agency. Before Mussolini’s downfall Ansaldo was Italy’s leading pep talker to soldiers, generally in the form of dire warnings what would happen if they did not support Mussolini’s leadership. The Courier-Mail, Brisbane, Wednesday 17 May 1944.

Execution Of ‘Woe Woe’ Ansaldo Reported

LONDON, November 8. “Woe Woe”‘ Ansaldo, who was notorious for his melancholy broadcast tirades and articles when Italy was on the decline, has been executed in Germany, according to ‘unconfirmed reports in Rome, says a correspondent of the “Daily Telegraph.” Ansaldo enlisted in the Italian army, after Mussolini’s downfall, and is said to have been captured by the Nazis in Croatia and executed for anti-German propaganda, The Advertiser, Adelaide, Thursday 9 November 1944, p.5.

What comes from this is quite interesting: Mr Adie was referring to a cultural tendency which Giovanni had inherited. It was, in fact, part of his heredity. And he was pointing out how extreme this tendency could be, and the dangers of allowing it to grow unchecked. The story of “Woe, Woe” Ansaldo is instructive: he could not stop moaning, but he moaned once too often, and the Nazis didn’t like it. As the newspapers could not resist pointing out: his crying “woe” finally brought real woe to him.

Joseph Azize, 18 February 2020


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *