The Weekday Ramble is a daily dose of sports, music, culture, and more from Rambling On founder Erik Ritland. For more information check us out on Reddit, Twitter, Facebook, or at our website.
Wednesday March 4, 2015
#ThreeQuotes week continues with some wisdom on wisdom.
Plutarch: Live with the past
To make no mistake is not in the power of man; but from their errors and mistakes the wise and good learn wisdom for the future.
One of the dumbest bits of contemporary non-wisdom – I see it on memes all the time – is some form of “my past does not define who I am” or “forget about the past.” To ignore the past is a disease. If you don’t internalize the mistakes you’ve made you’re bound to make them over and over again. Sure, dwelling on the past and having it cripple you is a bad thing, but to treat the past like it doesn’t matter is just stupid. As Greek philosopher Plutarch puts so nicely.
Ingersoll: The common man
It is a thousand times better to have common sense without education than to have education without common sense.
- Robert G. Ingersoll
Civil War veteran and politician Robert G. Ingersoll was a proponent of Enlightenment-era rationalism. As such, his version of “common sense” would probably differ in nuance from me, but foundationally it’s pretty similar across the board (hence the “common”). Ironic how rarely “education” fosters intuitive knowledge.
Gibran: Be human
Keep me away from the wisdom which does not cry, the philosophy which does not laugh.
- Kahlil Gibran
Life is more than just rigidity. That’s why a philosophy based on just reason makes no sense to me. Life is also emotion, passion, and so many other intangibles that add the fun, best stuff to life. Gibran is right on here. Wisdom without a passionate response like crying is unhuman, as is a philosophy that is humorless. It’s simply lifeless and, ironically, irrational.
Erik Ritland is a writer and musician from St. Paul, Minnesota. His blog and podcast Rambling On features commentary on music, sports, culture, and more. He is also a contributor for Minnesota culture blog Curious North. Support Erik's music via his Patreon account, reach him via email, or find him on Facebook and Twitter.