Friday, April 1, 2016

Living With a Mind, Roger Scruton

"Ideas beg to be shared, and by sharing them, you come to know the other person far more intimately than through adventure or sport."

 What a profound, entertaining, and though provoking essay from Roger Scruton. Scruton argues for the inherent value of a thoughtful life and the companionship it brings through a community of thinkers. This is truly counter-culture. Mixed in is a quaint neo-agrarianism, in reaction to the noise of the modern world, and a curmudgeonly defense of classical music. If I could live in this essay, I would.

"The joy of the intellectual life arises partly from the search for truth, toward which the thinking person turns as a flower to the sun. As you turn it is inevitable that you should question orthodoxies, be suspicious of opinions that serve the interests of those who adopt them, and explore the problems that confront us without fear of being proven wrong. To take the life of the mind seriously, therefore, you may have to reconcile yourself, as Spinoza did, to circulating your thoughts among your soul mates, and to avoiding their public expression. You may have to recognize that truth is a threat to a culture created by the mass expression of unexamined opinions, and is best kept to the circle of those for whom it really matters." 

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