The first is from this disappointing essay by Michel Houellebecq. The essay starts off rather promisingly. I particularly liked, but did not really understand, this paragraph on Cartesian dualism:
Designed expressly to quarantine problems without content (God, the human soul, etc.), the category of spirit experienced a tumultuous decline, marked by various attempts to give it a semblance of real existence. Some attempts, like Kantianism, were grandiose; others, like psychology, were miserable.This has a sort of Wittgensteinian ring to it, but I'm not sure how or whether it could be cashed out.
Less intriguing is the end of the essay:
Only the promise of physical immortality, made possible by technology, could once again make religion possible. What Comte helps us see is that such a religion — a religion for immortals — is still necessary.Not only do I not see what physical immortality has to do with religion, but I had thought that Houellebecq's own The Possibility of an Island had shown this well.
The second quotation is from Anscombe:
To marry is not to enter into a pact of mutual complicity in no matter what sexual activity upon one another's bodies.This is not all that marriage is, but I'm not sure that it isn't part of it. I like the idea of "a pact of mutual complicity" anyway.