As we become older, we are more conscious of the limitations of knowledge. Nothing is so frustratingly difficult as its attainment. It is like trying to look up at a star or planet in the night sky. Every time we look directly at one of these points of light, it seems to disappear; only by shifting away our eyes can we perceive it.Continue reading
When one examines the characters of different civilizations, one begins to notice commonalities of concern. That is, recurring patterns. Especially in the most ancient of civilizations. There is this obsession with capturing the Spirit of Life, mastering its principles, and using that Mastery as a sort of pole-vault—if you will—to leap over the Wall of Life into the realm of the After-Life. Look at those old Assyrian stone reliefs, showing the bearded kings pollinating their date-plants, which were the staff of life in the ancient Near East. Look at the pharaoh smiting his enemies with a mace, and enjoying every minute of it. Mastering life in order to master death, in other words.
Travel writing is a popular genre. We live in an age of travel, where it is easy to plan a sojourn to the most remote of locations. Most people today hardly give a thought to the fact that their routine international destinations of travel were, until very recently, accessible only by ship or overland travel. Even as late as the 1860s, the source of the Nile River in Africa was unknown.