Sunday, June 17, 2007

The Revelations of Dr Modesto

Well, actually it's not about that at all, but I thought it would be a good title, stolen mostly from a novel by the late great Alan Harington, an author of some note, who also wrote a book called The Immortalist that once upon a time utterly changed the course of my life.

I didn't even know Harrington had died until today—and to think he died ten years ago!—until I, just now, frivolously and following a whimsy, evoked the title of one of his fiction works, a novel full of a special kind of dark humor; a kind of fictional excursion into the same lands that Salvator Dali went to in his paintings; only that Harrington wrote about social interactions and the strange places the mind goes sometimes—or often-times, if the truth be told.

Read the homages in the link above. He was a special man, whose passion transmitted itself in his books. The Immortalist is still, despite being dated, the most influential book of non-fiction I have ever read.

And to another topic. Here's a question for you. From whom stems this quote?

I start…from a belief in individual freedom and that derives fundamentally from a belief in the limitations of our knowledge, from a belief…that nobody can be sure that what he believes is right, is really right.…I’m an imperfect human being who cannot be certain of anything, so what position…involved the least intolerance on my part?…The most attractive position…is putting individual freedom first.

Homework for the day. More on this later. And, no, it wasn't the obvious suspect: R.A. Heinlein.

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