Random Variables :: random thoughts deep and wide
Monday, 25. October 2004
To see resources

www.acton.org

"... a person needs quite a lot of human virtues to be able to see resources. First of all, one needs a certain passion for theoretical thought; that is, contemplation. Consider this example from the story of Ulysses and the giant cyclops Polyphemus in Homer's Odyssey: Ulysses and his companions are imprisoned in a hole by the cyclops and are overwhelmed by fear, becoming so passive that Polyphemus is able to take and eat a few of them. Ulysses speaks to his heart-believed to be the organ that controlled passions-and asks it to help. Ulysses then becomes calm as he is freed from the debilitating fear over his personal safety, and when he regains mastery over himself, he is able to see that a nearby pole, when sharpened, may become a weapon against the giant and that the sheep can be used as instruments to get out of the hole. Ulysses can now struggle against the giant-a symbol of nature-because he sees clearly and is no longer blinded by his passions. He can see because he was able to recover his contemplative attitude."

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