Vox et praeterea nihil

Proving Plutarch Prescient

Earning the right to be stupid

I have recently and far too belatedly been introduced to the thoughts and writing of Paul Valéry. I’m not sure I share everything about his outlook, but he is a highly intriguing figure and I now intend to read some of his work. I’m not prone to (re)circulating pithy quotations, but it was through a couple of his that I stumbled across his life and work, so with your kind indulgence, I will share them here.

The first is, “The best way to make your dreams come true is to wake up.”

The other is more true to what I keep thinking and hoping this blog is designed and intended to be–something of a personal intellectual diary. Valéry maintained one, known as Les Cahiers (The Notebooks). He faithfully contributed something to this endeavor every morning, about which he wrote, “Having dedicated those hours to the life of the mind, I thereby earn the right to be stupid for the rest of the day.” Amen to that!

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