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Sunday, November 8, 2009

TheBigHenry Manifesto (rev.2)

Related Link » TheBigHenry Manifesto (rev.1)

TheBigHenry Manifesto (rev.2)
In which I address the question, "Why do you blog?"
"Cogito, ergo sum [I think, therefore I am]." — René Descartes
"I am, therefore I may [timshel]." — TheBigHenry
"When bad men combine, the good must associate; else they will fall one by one, an unpitied sacrifice in a contemptible struggle." — Edmund Burke

I ascribe significant value to structure in my life. Perhaps that is a manifestation of my OCD "persuasion". Be that as it may, I think of my life having consisted of several stages so far:
  1. Preschool (ages 0—3)
  2. Schooling (ages 3—28)
  3. Research (ages 28—60)
  4. Retirement (ages 60—present)
It is obvious that my principal tool from birth to retirement had been my mind, which by most accounts served me well. Although some of my colleagues suggested I had lost it by retiring, I am inclined to believe that my mind is still intact. I plan to keep it that way.

In planning for my retirement, I understood that to optimize that stage of my life would require care and feeding of heart and mind — physical as well as mental exercise, in addition to a healthy diet. All three are important, of course, but for me the most interesting to contemplate has always been the mental exercise.

During my research stage, my mental exercise derived primarily from my work-related activities, and even from my favorite pastime, duplicate bridge. In my retirement, I needed to find a suitable alternative for my professional research. The operative word was "suitable".

Several aspects of intellectual activity are important components for my personal notion of a suitable mental exercise: reading; comprehending; analysis; writing; joking; musing; and documenting. All these and more are available through the publishing of a blog. I also derive satisfaction from the creative process of maintaining such a living and evolving document.

Having maintained my blog for more than two and a half years now, I have come to realize another important motivation for what has become part of my daily ritual. I have reached the stage of life when thoughts of posterity "trespass onto the radar", to coin a phrase. And with such a mixed-emotion realization, I have also recalled a quote that is often mis-attributed to Edmund Burke:
"All that is needed for the forces of evil to succeed is for enough good men to remain silent." — (William Safire?)
I refuse to be shoved into tomorrow's gas chambers without speaking out while I still can.

This is why I blog at Remembrance in Spacetime.

Post #993 TheBigHenry Manifesto (rev.2)

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