Thursday 5 November 2015

Things I read recently

"This book is a product of its time and does not reflect the same values as it would if it were written today. Parents might wish to discuss with their children how views on race, gender, sexuality, ethnicity, and interpersonal relations have changed since this book was written before allowing them to read this classic work."

Wilder Publications place this warning at the beginning of their editions of the US Constitution, Kant's Critique of Pure Reason, Chapman's Homer, The Wind in the Willows and numerous other books.

"Nobody can give you wiser advice than yourself."


“I'm killing time while I wait for life to shower me with meaning and happiness.”

Calvin and Hobbes

"I have discovered that in discussions it never helps to take a morally superior tone to one’s opponent."

Nelson Mandela from Long Walk to Freedom, 1994 I kick against the sanctification of Mandela but he had great qualities, despite being a Communist and revolutionary.

"Women make up less than 1% of the garbage-collecting workforce in the US. I look forward to the campaign for a 50/50 gender split in this line of work."

Brendan O'Neil

"There’s no question to me that life is a circle. The longer we last the closer we feel to our beginnings. And the harder it becomes to determine the sensory from the sensible in terms of what we’re feeling. It’s one of the rare occasions where my atheist convictions are seriously challenged. How cleverly conceived, and how benevolent to us as a species, that as we edge towards the end of our days, instead of looking forward with boundless enthusiasm we find ourselves slipping back to past memories. Just as the overwhelming protective love we feel for a child is watered down by troublesome teenage years before we can bear to let our offspring leave us, so our expectation of life dims as we approach the ultimate cul de sac. If that’s not intelligent design it’s a hell of a coincidence."

Mariella Frostrup. I'm amazed that that lovely girl is fifty, am sorry for her that she's an atheist, like her argument for the existence of God, but I don't remember looking forward with boundless enthusiasm when I was in my teens or twenties - I have much more enthusiasm now and ever since my mid 30s.

"And for men too, there is, according to a famous authoress, a hope of freedom. Men are beginning to revolt, we are told, against the old tribal custom of desiring fatherhood. The male is casting off the shackles of being a creator and a man. When all are sexless there will be equality. There will be no women and no men. There will be but a fraternity, free and equal. The only consoling thought is that it will endure but one generation."

G.K. Chesterton.

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