our greatest blessings come to us by way of madness Phaedr. 244a

2011/09/19

history

Learning is always a sort of non-living dissection. Lysis. In vitro. :)

So.

Just tlking to a friend about teaching. Intro ancient history class, large university, so all sorts of students and non-history majors. Lecture tomorrow on Athenian democracy. Then they'll read Antigone. Greek theatre part of polis-shaping, and that play most of all. Has taught this class a number of times, and the kids usually really get it.

One bubble worth popping is related to the end times / prophetic / oracle tendency: Intuition sure, emotion yes -- both positive parts of being human, the instinct of mind drawing on experiences personal and collective. But the old bit about history repeating itself can be as distorting as thinking one's personal god is whispering future events to his chosen. History teaches its lessons; we do learn from experiences. But to impose certainty is distortion, prediction a danger. What history can really teach one is something about the origin of one's prejudices. Really important stuff, teabaggers. Their own missing link with reality.

Whatever reality is. 

http://medspirit.com/logo/emblem/index.htm
Jung taught all this, but people only remember the wogga-wogga about him. Really want to see A Most Dangerous Method, see what they've done with it. I have the Kerr book it was drawn from, and he makes clear that psychology as a profession worked to discredit Jung. Why? I think he was simply too open and aware of that history that sheds light on the origins of our own closely-held cultural and religious prejudices. Truth that sets you free.