Some are dinning in our ears that we Americans, and moderns generally, are intellectual dwarfs compared with the ancients, or even the Elizabethan men. But what is that to the purpose? A living dog is better than a dead lion. Shall a man go and hang himself because he belongs to the race of pygmies, and not be the biggest pygmy that he can? Let every one mind his own business, and endeavor to be what he was made.From Thoreau, Walden (Conclusion)
Why should we be in such desperate haste to succeed and in such desperate enterprises?
Wednesday, November 18, 2009
Somehow, I find this inspirational, particularly when I recall that Hume wrote his Treatise when he was 27, and that Mill was a polyglot by (something like) 5: