31/03/2022

2022/03/31#p1
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For a venture such as a personal blog, especially one that sees endless tinkering and change, there is an almost never-ending succession of anniversaries. The start of this, the end of that, a revision here or outright reconstruction there.

Today marks two years since I first implemented the 'blank slate' metaphor for the blog: the home page has no old content, nothing before 'Today', so that each day begins anew unburdened by what has come before. As I wrote at the time:

Now I can look at the blog and relish a fresh start every day, embrace the blank page rather than fear it. I can wonder "what has today got in store?"

While I have made a lot of alterations to how things work over the years (both on WordPress and here) I believe that this single change has been the most transformative for how I think about the blog.

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2022/03/31#p2
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"In a way goodness and truth seem to come out of the depths of the soul, and when we really know something we feel that we’ve always known it. Yet also it’s terribly distant, farther than any star. We’re sort of stretched out. It’s like beyond the world, not in the clouds or in heaven, but a light that shows the world, this world, as it really is." — Iris Murdoch, Above the Gods

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2022/03/31#p3
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The question of goodness:

With an eye to the relationship between the good and “the real which is the proper object of love, and of knowledge which is freedom,” she considers what it takes for us to purify our attention in order to take in reality on its own terms, unalloyed with our attachments and ideas.

What it takes, she suggests, is “something analogous to prayer, though it is something difficult to describe, and which the higher subtleties of the self can often falsify” — not some “quasi-religious meditative technique,” but “something which belongs to the moral life of the ordinary person.”

The Marginalian

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2022/03/31#p4
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I had Jac on my lap and, looking at the tufts of hair that curl up near his tail, said "we'll have to start calling you Shirley Temple." And then I thought "I'm probably of the last generation that will utter such a line."

It suddenly struck me that I was part of an old guard for a time before the internet, before personal computers were popular and prolific. I can remember a purely analogue life that essentially wasn't too dissimilar from that of my parents, whereas the difference between mine and that of my children is immense.

It made me feel sad that, although my wife and I did everything we could to educate our children in classic cultural sources, so much will be lost due to the generational gap caused by the digital revolution. Kids have always rebelled against their parents, always rejected what "the oldies" saw as culture, but the digital divide has grown that to extreme proportions.

It's not even being nostalgic, the "everything was better in my day" refrain because it wasn't, but a genuine sense that so much will disappear because there is no one left to remember it.

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Colin Walker Colin Walker colin@colinwalker.blog