If you’re anything like me, you’ve grappled with the fact that in your lifetime you will not be able to experience everything: (i.e. read every book, watch every movie, master every discipline). Although it may sound ridiculous, I must admit that years ago, when I first had this realization, I suffered a bout of depression (this word “depression” is especially precise if one takes depression to mean the inability to construct a future). I was intellectually paralyzed. Too many choices. Too many paths. And with the “Frost-y” knowledge of how way leads on to way…how could I dare to begin?
Well, as you’ve probably already experienced, the failure to make a decision is itself a decision. Eventually, the paralysis subsides. You drink a glass of water. You feel the rough-warm sandpaper of your dog’s tongue on your toes. You micturate. You lose your train of thought.
This moment is when banal platitudes are born. Insert your own here. In this regard, the cliché is an axiomatic shortcut. We don’t have the time, the will, or the energy to recreate every proof. Doing so is deadly inefficient. We compress complex ideas down to simple codes and metaphors. We keep moving.
I could go on and on like this, but, if you’ve made it this far, I do not want to bore you. Birthed from the common insight of the preceding three paragraphs, I’ve decided to make the Summer, to put it grandiose terms (an appropriate fit for my manufactured persona) a time of Renaissance style enquiry. My razor for narrowing the scope of the venture will be my interest and your (the reader’s) contributions to the discussion. I will create a separate page, entitled “Summer Dialectic,” where I will post what I’m reading and some thoughts. Feel free to join the conversation at any level, either by engaging with the same text or simply by reading the page and putting in a thoughtful response based on your own intellectual experience. You may even wish to broaden the conversation by posting in like style: what you’re reading and your own thoughts. I don’t mind “traveling” alone, but if you’re “traveling” too…