Friday, November 28, 2003

"WE HAVE THREE TYPES OF MEMORY. The first one is organic, which is the memory made of flesh and blood and the one administrated by our brain. The second is mineral, and in this sense mankind has known two kinds of mineral memory: millennia ago, this was the memory represented by clay tablets and obelisks, pretty well known in this country, on which people carved their texts. However, this second type is also the electronic memory of today's computers, based upon silicon. We have also known another kind of memory, the vegetal one, the one represented by the first papyruses, again well known in this country, and then on books, made of paper."(Al-Ahram Weekly | Books Supplement | Vegetal and mineral memory: The future of books | Umberto Eco)

"Now we can understand the full meaning of Socrates' statement that virtue is knowledge. If a person knows what he is doing, then the life he makes for himself is one of the possible ways in which he could have lived, and so it defines by its actual character a conception of the good. If that conception of the good, which is thus implicit in his way of living, is a false conception, he is ignorant of the true good and his life is, in fact, a false choice. The virtuous man is the man whose life is in fact a choice of the true good, and since he is a conscious being he knows what he is doing; so that his life defines consciously the good as it really is. It is quite simply true from this point of view that virtuous action is knowledge of the good, or if you prefer it, of how to live properly. "(From The Philosopher, Volume LXXXVIII No. 1 Special History Issue | REASON IN ACTION | John McMurray )