There must be indeed some law, a great attractor which pulls all the information towards the user. Or so it seems for me, judging by the books I read.
Mircea Eliade's novel is just a piece of the information my strange attractor brings me(according to my view of the chaos theory).
A society in change is usually a theme meant to reiterate itself, always new and yet in a different light. That's the way I perceived the society presented in the book. The intellectuals of the 1933-1934 period in Romania. The problems might be different, the communist riots were on the verge of breaking out(and one did happen) and now after almost 80 years we are struggling to change communist mentalities and to bring back a new sense of morality and perhaps to renew some lost values. The characters present their philosophical interrogations regarding their life purpose, and even if the social context might be change, the question still remain.
What is one's goal, ideal for his/her life? Is there a superior way in which to live, create, work? All these are themes that are present in every character's mind. The way the monologues are written reveal this pursuit of a meaning to life throughout the book.
One might think that these intellectuals are all selfish, each and everyone trying to realize goals of their one,trying to make a new start disregarding their families, their roots, only to discover in the end that you cannot live life on an intellectual realm, that you must transcend to life by embracing some concrete responsibilities. Each character becomes entrapped in a mesh of everyday problems and change occurs with or without them noticing. They change their ideals, seeing things more nuanced.
Only one character Paul Anicet chooses to suicide being thorn between a love for two women, realizing that he could not make himself be free, in the sense of freedom of thought and action that he wants. It's an selfish act, and one that betrays an pursuit for a unity that he thinks can only be found in death.
All in all it is a book about the meaning on creating a life, an pursuit for superior ideals, and the confront with the reality. It is indeed a book that can be found relevant for everyone who wants to create a path of development and growth that could best construct an individual's purpose, meaning to all it's actions.
Perhaps if there is a meaning which can be used to justify one's actions a sense of congruence is achieved(a congruence with one's goal, purpose).