Although, unfortunately, these young men do not understand that the sacrifice of life is, perhaps, the easiest of all sacrifices in many cases, while to sacrifice, for example, five or six years of their ebulliently youthful life to hard, difficult studies, to learning, in order to increase tenfold their strength to serve the very truth and the very deed that they loved and set out to accomplish – such sacrifice is quite often almost beyond the strength of many of them.
[German goalkeeper Oliver] Kahn once agreed to take part in a penalty shoot-out for charity in which he faced children who would collect money for an orphanage by putting one past the famous pro. Then he saved every single spot-kick because he couldn’t stand to be beaten.
Ulrich Hesse-Lichtenberger, Tor!: The Story of German Football (via eush)
The concept of physis was transferred from the whole universe to a single part of it—to mankind; and there it took on a special meaning. Man is subject to certain rules prescribed by his own nature, which must be known if he is to live correctly in health and recover properly from illness. This was the first recognition of the fact that the physis of man is a physical organism, with a particular structure to be understood and treated in a particular way.
Aeschylus took the main outlines of the character of Prometheus, the hero of the intellectual world, from Ionian theories of the origin of civilization, which with their triumphant faith in progress contrasted so sharply with the peasant Hesiod’s melancholy description of the five ages of the degenerating world, and of its approaching ruin. Prometheus is inventive and exploratory genius, inspired by a helpful love for suffering humanity.
At this stage logic appears to work like an explosive. The oldest authorities shake and fall under its impact. Nothing is correct but that which I can explain to myself on conclusive grounds, that for which my thought can reasonably account…Yet in this victory of the rational I over traditional authority, there is latent a force which is to triumph over the individual: the concept of Truth, a new universal category to which every personal preference must yield.
Werner Jaeger, Paideia (1:155) on early Greek philosophy.
Here’s how it works: Detroit account holders who owe $250 or less to DWSD can enter their information through a simple form-based site. Required info includes address, account number, past due and current charges, and account balance. The information is then verified through the Detroit Water and Sewage Department website.
Would-be donors simply submit an email address. Once a donor is matched with an account holder, the donor then receives all the account information required to pay the overdue bill. The donor can’t see the Detroit account holder’s name, though, unless the account holder asks to reveal it.
Bell and Tillman’s site indicates that only individual residents are eligible to participate—so a donor won’t be asked to pay on one of the city’s many delinquent corporate accounts. Some 4,400 homes remained without water in late June, according to reports. The department announced today that it was suspending shut-offs for the next 15 days to give delinquent account holders time to seek help.
While attending Alabama Agricultural and Mechanical University, he had a out-of-body experience during which he was transported into outer space. As biographer John Szwed records him saying, “my whole body changed into something else. I landed on a planet that I identified as Saturn.” While there, aliens with “little antenna on each ear. A little antenna on each eye” instructed him to drop out of college and speak through his music. And that’s just what he did, changing his name from Herman Blount and never looking back….
In 1971, he served as artist-in-residence at UC Berkeley and offered a spring semester lecture, African-American Studies 198, also known as “Sun Ra 171,” “The Black Man in the Universe,” or “The Black man in the Cosmos.” The course featured readings from—to name just a few—theosophist Madame Blavatsky, French philosopher Constantin Francois de Chasseboeuf, black American writer and poet Henry Dumas, and “God,” whom the cosmic jazz theorist reportedly listed as the author of The Source Book of Man’s Life and Death (otherwise known as the King James Bible).
The point is that although all known life is based on replicators, what the phenomenon of life is really about is knowledge. We can give a definition of adaptation directly in terms of knowledge: an entity is adapted to its niche if it embodies knowledge that causes the niche to keep that knowledge in existence. Now we are getting closer to the reason why life is fundamental. Life is about the physical embodiment of knowledge, and in Chapter 6 we came across a law of physics, the Turing principle, which is also about the physical embodiment of knowledge. It says that it is possible to embody the laws of physics, as they apply to every physically possible environment, in programs for a virtual-reality generator. Genes are such programs. Not only that, but all other virtual-reality programs that physically exist, or will ever exist, are direct or indirect effects of life. For example, the virtual-reality programs that run on our computers and in our brains are indirect effects of human life. So life is the means — presumably a necessary means — by which the effects referred to in the Turing principle have been implemented in nature.
If the laws of physics as they apply to any physical object or process are to be comprehensible, they must be capable of being embodied in another physical object — the knower. It is also necessary that processes capable of creating such knowledge be physically possible. Such processes are called science. Science depends on experimental testing, which means physically rendering a law’s predictions and comparing it with (a rendering of) reality. It also depends on explanation, and that requires the abstract laws themselves, not merely their predictive content, to be capable of being rendered in virtual reality. This is a tall order, but reality does meet it. That is to say, the laws of physics meet it. The laws of physics, by conforming to the Turing principle, make it physically possible for those same laws to become known to physical objects. Thus, the laws of physics may be said to mandate their own comprehensibility.
The instrument by which extensive mischiefs have in all ages been perpetuated has been, the principle of many men being reduced to mere machines in the hands of the few. Man, while he consults his own understanding, is the ornament of the universe. Man, when he surrenders his reason, and becomes the partisan of implicit faith and passive obedience, is the most mischievous of all animals.