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Wednesday 19 October 2011

Quotes worth saving (9) Heraclitus praised by Heidegger

"To think is surely a peculiar affair. The word of thinkers has no authority. The word of thinkers knows no authors, in the sense of writers. The word of thinking is not picturesque; it is without charm. The word of thinking rests in the sobering quality of what it says. Just the same, thinking changes the world. It changes it in the ever darker depths of a riddle, depths which as they grow darker offer promise of a greater brightness."
Martin Heidegger, Early Greek Thinking, 'Logos'

Thursday 6 October 2011

Thirty-three, or 33 things for 33 years

1. the ordinary is more wonderful than any fiction can ever be.

2. philosophy is the art of living and dying well, it is not merely a difficult academic game.

3. generalisations can be useful in theoretical descriptions, but are mostly useless and dangerous in practical situations.

4. the oppositional dichotomy employed most commonly in descriptions is naïve at best, corrupting and destructive at its worst.

5. science and religion cannot give the answer - only distraction.

6. art and philosophy cannot give the cure - only pacification.

7. how much we all owe to the randomness of existence.

8. most problems are caused by poor communication.

9. the flaws in language cannot be 'ironed out' and totally corrected, this is because the flaws are not in the system but in the operators (this poor metaphor also serves as an example).

10. a metaphorical description is an attempt to convey something grasped quite loosely, if it is not successful then another might be attempted.

11. caring-for is a devoted focus upon another object, event, or being that signifies a connection.

12. not-caring results in distancing.

13. we cannot be said to have absolute control over what we care about.

14. the focus of care is one of concern, we worry about what we care about because we care.

15. too much worry makes one ill.

16. thinking too much makes one worry about that which we cannot change.

17. thinking too little makes one an object of use for another.

18. we think that our attempted definitions of concepts are like a laser-beam of truth, when in fact it is akin to the sun's rays or rainfall upon a thirsty plant.

19. concepts tend to oscillate at an alarming frequency.

20. we live out our own judgements we make upon our own lives, there is nothing more final.

21. although categorising/theorising/storytelling is, in extreme, the epitome of falsehood it is also at the root of understanding.

22. an artwork, at its best, is an original attempt.

23. do not try and deny your mistakes, instead own them fully.

24. one should laugh as often as possible.

25. a friend is one with whom you can share laughter without pretext.

26. our perspectives are undergoing continual change and cannot therefore be described as 'final'.

27. God is only a concept and not a thing or being, but no less real for all that.

28. there are far too many people who do not care.

29. people would much rather vocalise than properly talk.

30. failure to understand the 'other' is based in the failure to understand yourself.

31. the relationships between things are mostly more important than the things themselves.

32. death, like sickness, is not to be feared. only calmly accepted. death is the end.

33. I would rather be hated than liked, I would rather be loved than hated.