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Showing posts from April, 2017

The Mechanics of Virtue, Matt Berry, aphorism 123

123

A moral proverb can easily set the tide of opinion washing high over the expediency of its own utterance, finding a sufficient number of heads bobbing in agreement.



A Human Strategy ** The Mechanics of Virtue ** Post-Atheism


a ring of authenticity, A Human Strategy, Matt Berry, aphorism 299

299

Nonetheless: Whatever falls from the highest state of excitement has a ring of authenticity that cannot be muffled out, not even by the intention behind the utterance.




A Human Strategy ** The Mechanics of Virtue ** Post-Atheism


If we consider democracy the maintenance of dissent, The Mechanics of Virtue, Matt Berry, aphorism 124

124

If we consider democracy the maintenance of dissent, then the attack on democracy succeeds when the enemy is unambiguous ... obvious.  A consolidation of the party in power is secured.  Democracy is most secure when the people are not quite sure what to do next.  Ambiguity requires debate; unambiguity discards it altogether.


A Human Strategy ** The Mechanics of Virtue ** Post-Atheism


living my life, A Human Strategy, Matt Berry, aphorism 300

300

As far as living my life is concerned, the discovery of mechanical force over my own thoughts has been the only Truth worth my efforts.




A Human Strategy ** The Mechanics of Virtue ** Post-Atheism


The Hung Jury, The Mechanics of Virtue, Matt Berry, aphorism 125

125

The Hung Jury: He appeared to raise the standard of judgment by slaving it to unanimous decision.  But a lynch mob is a unanimous decision.  What he really wanted was to increase our estimation of his verdict to such a height that we would not look so low as the method itself.



A Human Strategy ** The Mechanics of Virtue ** Post-Atheism


the secret of the universe, A Human Strategy, Matt Berry, aphorism 301

301

What could be more useless than to comprehend the secret of the universe? A man would almost think that he could then do away with dinner.



A Human Strategy ** The Mechanics of Virtue ** Post-Atheism


When society does all of the thinking, The Mechanics of Virtue, Matt Berry, aphorism 126

126

When society does all of the thinking for the infant, it is a privilege and a gift – and now any independent thought in the adolescent becomes a case of ingratitude.


A Human Strategy ** The Mechanics of Virtue ** Post-Atheism


A Human Strategy, Matt Berry, aphorism 302

302

I can handle more than my mind can grasp.



A Human Strategy ** The Mechanics of Virtue ** Post-Atheism


an immoralist, The Mechanics of Virtue, Matt Berry, aphorism 127

127

The only way for timely success as an immoralist is to bait one’s hook with the success of a past immoralist.  One does not say, “I....,” one says, “Nietzsche....”  There is such a thing as a conventional immorality, and as it goes with conventional opinions, it is not threatened in the least by its being a contradiction.


A Human Strategy ** The Mechanics of Virtue ** Post-Atheism


Will Power, A Human Strategy, Matt Berry, aphorism 303

303

“Will Power” is a constructed response ... a bracing ourselves against a natural response which we perceive as harmful.  However, more effective than such “Will Power” is the substitution of one stimulus, if not an entire context, for another.  And where one cannot substitute, one can at least disperse the power of a harmful stimulus by introducing competitive stimuli.  But it takes a little will power to perceive this and a tremendous amount to hold it in place long enough for any grafted stimulus to integrate itself and contribute to the full circulation.




A Human Strategy ** The Mechanics of Virtue ** Post-Atheism


one’s culture, The Mechanics of Virtue, Matt Berry, aphorism 128

128

A public morality has the individual reacting on behalf of his culture, this way, then that, according to present conditions.  One cannot then anticipate the turn required by one’s culture if one holds to a private moral interpretation.  Immorality, observed as a public event, occurs when one fails to turn with the others.  For the private thinker, however, immorality occurs precisely when one turns from one's most cherished moral precepts.  The public takes a turn; the private moralist continues with his straight and narrow, and commits a crime against society.




A Human Strategy ** The Mechanics of Virtue ** Post-Atheism


I should, A Human Strategy, Matt Berry, aphorism 304

304

We hold our noses to even our best uses of the word, “I should,” until ... unless they put on the well-pressed uniform of “I know, and therefore, I must.”


A Human Strategy ** The Mechanics of Virtue ** Post-Atheism


a metaphor for the entire human problem, A Human Strategy, Matt Berry, aphorism 305

305


Taste is a stimulant; nutrition is essential — unequal in the power of appeal — but also unequal in the effect, and that should be enough to tip the scales.  But it does not.  The former remains as appealing as the latter remains effective.  Perhaps we can enlarge this into a metaphor for the entire human problem: our ideas of life are as stimulating as the mechanics of life are essential.


A Human Strategy ** The Mechanics of Virtue ** Post-Atheism