“The Pathway Of Life” by Leo Tolstoy

[Posted to commemorate the 106th anniversary of Tolstoy’s death] Who Am I? A man who has attained old age has passed through many vicissitudes : he was first an infant, then a child, an adult, an old man. But no matter how he has changed, he always calls himself “I.” This “I” was the same in his infancy, in his period of maturity, in his … Continue reading “The Pathway Of Life” by Leo Tolstoy

The Chess Game Analogy: Feynman on the Laws of Nature

One way that’s kind of a fun analogy to try to get some idea of what we’re doing in trying to understand nature is to imagine that the gods are playing some great game like chess. Let’s say a chess game. And you don’t know the rules of the game, but you’re allowed to look at the board at least from time to time and … Continue reading The Chess Game Analogy: Feynman on the Laws of Nature

Borges On the Trend in Literary Commentary

I have read the Commedia many times, in all of the editions I could find, and I have been distracted by the different commentaries, the varied interpretations of that multifaceted work. … I have found that in the oldest editions theological commentary predominates; in the nineteenth century, historical; and currently, aesthetic, which directs us toward the accentuation of each line, one of the great virtues … Continue reading Borges On the Trend in Literary Commentary

Tolstoy on Kant, Smoking and Writing

“It is usually said (and I used to say) that smoking facilitates mental work. And that is undoubtedly true if one considers only the quantity of one’s mental output. To a man who smokes, and who consequently ceases strictly to appraise and weigh his thoughts, it seems as if he suddenly had many thoughts. But this is not because he really has many thoughts, but … Continue reading Tolstoy on Kant, Smoking and Writing

Bertrand Russell on Love

“Of all forms of caution, caution in love is perhaps the most fatal to true happiness.” –Bertrand Russell “The Conquest of Happiness” Russell, when asked what he would say if he died and found himself confronted by God, whose Love he had refused to believe and accept, was quoted to have said, “Not enough evidence, God, not enough evidence.” “For God so loved the world … Continue reading Bertrand Russell on Love