Digression on life

There is a Chinese saying that you should be Buddhist in your youth, Confucian as an adult, and Taoist in your old age. I thought that was the saying; I got it from the final days of Robert Anton Wilson; but actually he said something a little different.

Now let me illustrate how this works for a blogger. Vichy Fournier is not a Buddhist, but she’s a fabulous example of wisdom in someone young. Her power is to see and to state abstract truths.

Curtis Yarvin illustrates the second stage so well, he even uses a Confucian alias. He is also concerned with ideas, but he’s always connecting them to current events.

And Bruce Sterling gets to be the exemplar of Tao. Sorry Bruce! He’s still pretty engaged with the world, but mostly aesthetically.

Even a wise person must start out with more knowledge than experience. Only when they have come to truly know the particulars of their time and place – a learning which may take decades to acquire – can they act powerfully on the world. And eventually, the endless transformations of the world will in any case overwhelm their will to shape it. At that time, if they have retained understanding, they can at least relate to life as a drama and a spectacle.

Or, you can ignore all that and just keep trying, because no-one really knows what comes next or what the limits are. For that path, see Celia Green.

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One Response to “Digression on life”

  1. Vichy has been back « Entitled to an Opinion Says:

    […] it’s a low-readership blog. I only happened to check it out the second or third time I read Mitchell Porter’s latest and wondered why he was linking to a defunct blog. […]

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