Tuesday, February 20, 2007

what does this quote inspire you to write?

Quote for Feb 20 Daily Meme
Dancing in all its forms cannot be excluded from the curriculum of all noble education; dancing with the feet, with ideas, with words, and, need I add that one must also be able to dance with the pen?
-- Friedrich Nietzsche

I'm glad it's a Nietzche quote.

My simple response: I guess now we dance with the typewriter and the words have become computer code.

The quote that struck me more was the one when you kept reading the How To Play section:
"We rarely quote nowadays to appeal to authority ... though we quote sometimes to display our sapience and erudition. Some authors we quote against. Some we quote not at all, offering them our scrupulous avoidance, and so make them part of our "white mythology." Other authors we constantly invoke, chanting their names in cerebral rituals of propitiation or ancestor worship."
-- Ihab Hassan, U.S. critic. repr. In The Right Promethean Fire (1980)

This spoke so much to me. It said "you'll never pass your GRE because you don't know the meaning of 'sapience', 'propitiation', or 'erudition' ". I've never heard the term "white mythology" before either. So I study.

Wikipedia on sapience: "Robert Sternberg [1] has segregated the capacity for judgment from ordinary meanings of intelligence, which is closer to the sense of clever than to wisdom." So just cause you past judgement on something, doesn't mean it is wisdom. If you pass judgement on something, you may be viewed as unintellegent by those who are wise ("Good judgment in making decisions about complex life or social decisions is a hallmark of being wise.").

Wikipedia on erudition: literally means "not rude"; "An erudite person will gain insight on particular subjects directly through books and study, rather than by following a course or scholarship in the subject." What's more interesting is the article on "Logical Rudeness" in which "The question of this essay is whether erudition can always be achieved, or rudeness avoided, by honest, logical, good faith inquirers for truth." I'll revisit this later because it will help me explain to people who have a tendency to be unintentionally rude the actuality of the situation instead of offending them by telling them they are rude.

Wikipedia on propitiation: "In Christianity, Propitiation is a theological term denoting that by which God is rendered propitious, i.e., that 'satisfaction' or 'appeasement' by which it becomes consistent with His character and government to pardon and bless sinners."
It's strange because I related the two previous terms to the type of dialog created by some very religious Christians. Their haste in dialog has disabled them from properly communicating with people who don't think like them about almost any subject. They don't have desire to understand other people, only god. All that stuff about loving their brother and enemy doesn't mean they have to listen to them or understand them. They can't trust in God to help them remain positive through a discussion, validate another person's ideas, and show love to their brothers/enemies.

White Mythology is not on Wikipedia but a couple of articles are written on the subject: Derrida, "White Mythology," Metaphor and Perspective - Landa and 'White Mythology' Revisited: Derrida and His Critics on Reason and Rhetoric - Harrison
The latter article has a direct quote from the original document.
"Metaphor . . . is determined by philosophy as a provisional loss of meaning, an economy of the proper without irreparable damage, a certainly inevitable detour, but also a history with its sights set on, and within the horizon of, the circular reappropriation of literal, proper meaning." - Derrida
In that case, modern dialogue is an evolving detour of proper meaning.

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