The Mountain and the Meaning of Life: René Daumal’s Alpine Allegory of Courage and the Measure of Wisdom, Essential Life-Learnings from 14 Years of Brain Pickings, Singularity: Marie Howe’s Ode to Stephen Hawking, Our Cosmic Belonging, and the Meaning of Home, in a Stunning Animated Short Film, The Cosmic Miracle of Trees: Astronaut Leland Melvin Reads Pablo Neruda’s Love Letter to Earth’s Forests, How Kepler Invented Science Fiction and Defended His Mother in a Witchcraft Trial While Revolutionizing Our Understanding of the Universe, Emily Dickinson’s Electric Love Letters to Susan Gilbert, Rebecca Solnit’s Lovely Letter to Children About How Books Solace, Empower, and Transform Us, Fixed vs. Growth: The Two Basic Mindsets That Shape Our Lives, In Praise of the Telescopic Perspective: A Reflection on Living Through Turbulent Times, A Stoic’s Key to Peace of Mind: Seneca on the Antidote to Anxiety, The Courage to Be Yourself: E.E. This can only be done by projecting the ethic of love to the center of our lives.” On Dr. King's birthday, his timeless wisdom is timely anew: Claim yours: Also: Because Brain Pickings is in its fifteenth year and because I write primarily about ideas of a timeless character, I have decided to plunge into my vast archive every Wednesday and choose from the thousands of essays one worth resurfacing and resavoring. .. So what’s the point? Pythagoras on the Purpose of Life and the Meaning of Wisdom Abiding insight into the aim of human existence from the man who revolutionized science and coined the … This question — at the heart of which is a concern with the meaning of life — has since been answered by many other great minds: For David Foster Wallace, it was about going through life fully conscious; for Carl Sagan, about our significant insignificance in the cosmos; for Annie Dillard, about learning to live with impermanence; for Richard Feynman, about finding the open channel; for Anaïs Nin, about living and relating to others “as if they might not be there tomorrow”; for Henry Miller, about the mesmerism of the unknown; and for Leo Tolstoy, about finding knowledge to guide our lives. January 2020. Art is used here to mean the accomplishment of knowledge in action. — — sunday newsletter. In what may be the most elegant articulation of the essence of responsibility, applicable to everything from our smallest personal acts to our grandest generational choices that shape posterity’s social and ecological inheritance, Daumal writes: When you take off on your own, leave some trace of your passage that will guide your return: one rock set on top of another, some grass pierced by a stick. But if you come to a place you cannot cross or that is dangerous, remember that the trace you have left might lead the people following you into trouble. If this labor has enlarged and enriched your own life this year, please consider aiding its sustenance with a one-time or loyal donation. But no one has explored the existential through the metaphor of the alpine more elegantly than the French surrealist poet, philosopher, and novelist René Daumal (March 16, 1908–May 21, 1944) in his allegorical novel Mount Analogue: A Tale of Non-Euclidian and Symbolically Authentic Mountaineering Adventures (public library), posthumously published and translated into English by Carol Cosman — a novel quite possibly inspired by and almost certainly subtitled as a wink to Edwin Abbott Abbott’s iconic 1884 allegorical novella Flatland: A Romance of Many Dimensions, yet a novel entirely and uncommonly original. In an admonition against the twin hazards of hubris and self-pity, he adds: Never stop on a crumbling slope. Figuring Maria Popova. —. https://www.brainpickings.org/2020/09/02/rene-daumal-mount-analogue/ An inventory of the meaningful life. Dec 4, 2018 - Brain Pickings – An inventory of the meaningful life. Echoing his equally brilliant, equally underappreciated compatriot and contemporary Simone Weil’s notion of the highest mountain-view of the mind, Daumal adds: Keep your eyes fixed on the way to the top, but don’t forget to look at your feet. Don’t think you have arrived just because you see the peak. If we have a meaningful place in this process, it is to try to fit into a healthy, symbiotic relationship with other life force. Brain Pickings Yesterday at 8:20 PM 200 years ago, in a novel set in the 21st century about a world rava ... ged by a pandemic, Mary Shelley contemplated what makes life worth living and how nature can serve as a lifeline to regaining sanity See More In 2020, I spent thousands of hours and thousands of dollars keeping Brain Pickings going. 50,240 talking about this. I have no staff, no interns, not even an assistant — a thoroughly one-woman labor of love that is also my life and my livelihood. Here's an example. January 2020. Cummings on Art, Life, and Being Unafraid to Feel, The Writing of “Silent Spring”: Rachel Carson and the Culture-Shifting Courage to Speak Inconvenient Truth to Power, Timeless Advice on Writing: The Collected Wisdom of Great Writers, A Rap on Race: Margaret Mead and James Baldwin’s Rare Conversation on Forgiveness and the Difference Between Guilt and Responsibility, The Science of Stress and How Our Emotions Affect Our Susceptibility to Burnout and Disease, Mary Oliver on What Attention Really Means and Her Moving Elegy for Her Soul Mate, Rebecca Solnit on Hope in Dark Times, Resisting the Defeatism of Easy Despair, and What Victory Really Means for Movements of Social Change, The Lonely City: Adventures in the Art of Being Alone, Civil Rights Legend Rosa Parks on the Meaning of Life, George Lucas, John Lithgow, and Other Luminaries on How the Humanities Make Us Human, Leo Tolstoy on Finding Meaning in a Meaningless World, Famous Writers' Sleep Habits vs. Go here. You can also become a spontaneous supporter with a one-time donation in any amount: Partial to Bitcoin? They try to personify it and deal with it in different ways. Brain-picking definition is - the act of gathering information from another's mind. January 18, 2021. I don’t think we can understand it through any kind of verbal, written or intellectual means. If this labor has enlarged and enriched your own life this year, please consider aiding its sustenance with a one-time or loyal donation. The Meaning of Life is superb in its entirety. I have no staff, no interns, not even an assistant — a thoroughly one-woman labor of love that is also my life and my livelihood. Brain Pickings participates in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn commissions by linking to Amazon. Subscribe to this free midweek pick-me-up for heart, mind, and spirit below — it is separate from the standard Sunday digest of new pieces: Since long before Dr. King proclaimed “I have seen the mountaintop!” mountains — like rivers — have been among our richest nature-drawn metaphors for making sense of our human lives and values. For nearly fifteen years, it has remained free and ad-free and alive thanks to patronage from readers. Life secret and Tips Toni ... January 18, 2021. Brain Pickings by Maria Popova - “The greatest obstacle to living is expectancy, which hangs upon tomorrow and loses today… The whole future lies in uncertainty: live immediately.” “How we spend our days,” Annie Dillard memorably wrote in her soul-stretching meditation on the life of presence, “is, of course, how we spend our … Instead there were little daily miracles, illuminations, matches struck unexpectedly in … So go back the way you came and destroy any traces you have left. Brain Pickings has a free Sunday digest of the week's most interesting and inspiring articles across art, science, philosophy, creativity, children's books, and other strands of our search for truth, beauty, and meaning. Brain Pickings Today at 6:00 PM “Love is really a recognition of truth, a recognition of another per ... son’s integrity and truth in a way that… makes both of you light up when you recognize the quality in the other.” Oct 11, 2018 - This Pin was discovered by anushree kapoor. Since 2006, I have been spending hundreds of hours and thousands of dollars each month to keep Brain Pickings going. In The Meaning of Life: Reflections in Words and Pictures on Why We Are Here (public library) — that remarkable 1991 anthology that gave us timeless meditations on existence from a number of luminaries — Lucas uses an autobiographical anecdote as the springboard for a larger meditation on the meaning of life and our best chance for reaching its fullest potential: When I was eighteen I was in an automobile accident and went through a near-death experience. — Jul 23, 2020 - Brain Pickings – An inventory of the meaningful life. Your support makes all the difference. I have no staff, no interns, not even an assistant — a thoroughly one-woman labor of love that is also my life and my livelihood. Daumal — who taught himself Sanskrit, translated some of the great Buddhist texts into French, and saturated his writing with philosophical reflections drawn from the liminal space between the scientific and the spiritual, between physical fact and poetic truth — begins by defining his “analogical alpinism”: Alpinism is the art of climbing mountains by confronting the greatest dangers with the greatest prudence. Sample it further with answers from Carl Sagan, John Cage, Annie Dillard, Stephen Jay Gould, Arthur C. Clarke, and Charles Bukowski. Discover (and save!) And even without wanting to, we always leave traces. There is something profound that the alpine shares with the telescopic: the gift of perspective — a gift that, once granted, cannot easily be revoked; once we have seen, once we have known, we cannot easily unsee and unknow, and so we cannot easily lose our position in space and sense. Life is beyond reason. — When the Lebanese-American poet, painter, and philosopher Etel Adnan was asked in a television interview who the most important person she ever met was, she answered without hesitation: “A mountain.” She meant a non-metaphorical mountain — Mount Tamalpais — out of which she carved her exquisite philosophical-poetic meditation on time, self, impermanence, and transcendence. The first step depends on the last. I have no staff, no interns, not even an assistant — a thoroughly one-woman labor of love that is also my life and my livelihood. Published September 2, 2020 Need to cancel a recurring donation? Article from brainpickings.org. In 2020, I spent thousands of hours and thousands of dollars keeping Brain Pickings going. Meaningful Life Brain … It has remained free and ad-free and alive thanks to patronage from readers. Brain Pickings participates in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn commissions by linking to Amazon. This is addressed to anyone who wants to leave traces of his passage in this world. Since 2006, I have been spending hundreds of hours and thousands of dollars each month to keep Brain Pickings going. In 2020, I spent thousands of hours and thousands of dollars keeping Brain Pickings going. You can beam some bit-love my way: 197usDS6AsL9wDKxtGM6xaWjmR5ejgqem7. “Along the way of life, someone must have sense enough and morality enough to cut off the chain of hate. The great revelation had never come. Couple Daumal’s strange and wondrous Mount Analogue with Rebecca Solnit’s indispensable Field Guide to Getting Lost, then revisit the great Scottish mountaineer and poet Nan Shepherd, writing at the same time as Daumal, on the life of the living mountain and Vita Sackville-West’s early love letters to Virginia Woolf about mountain-climbing and the meaning of life. Watch your feet, be certain of your next step, but don’t let this distract you from the highest goal. White (beloved author of Charlotte's Web and Stuart Little, formidable essayist and observer of life), White took the time to send this gorgeous letter of assurance and perspective: Take note of the circumstances of your fall, but don’t allow your body to brood on the memory. The Meaning of Life: Reflections in Words and Pictures on Why We Are Here David Friend “We live in a vast and awesome universe in which, daily, suns are made and worlds destroyed, where humanity clings to an obscure clod of rock. 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