To work and create “for nothing,” to sculpture in clay, to know one’s creation has no future, to see one’s work destroyed in a day while being aware that fundamentally this has no more importance than building for centuries—this is the difficult wisdom that absurd thought sanctions. Performing these two tasks simultaneously, negating on the one hand and magnifying on the other, it the way open to the absurd creator. He must give the void its colors.

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More from Albert Camus

More and more, when faced with the world of men, the only reaction is one of individualism. Man alone is an end unto himself. Everything one tries to do for the common good ends in failure.

Notebooks 1935-1942 (1962), March 1940 entry

Real generosity toward the future lies in giving all to the present.

You will never be happy if you continue to search for what happiness consists of. You will never live if you are looking for the meaning of life.

The absurd is the essential concept and the first truth.