Archives for May 2017

May 26, 2017 - Comments Off on Commonplace #0051

Commonplace #0051

As you set out for Ithaka
hope the voyage is a long one,
full of adventure, full of discovery.
Laistrygonians and Cyclops,
angry Poseidon—don’t be afraid of them:
you’ll never find things like that on your way
as long as you keep your thoughts raised high,
as long as a rare excitement
stirs your spirit and your body.
Laistrygonians and Cyclops,
wild Poseidon—you won’t encounter them
unless you bring them along inside your soul,
unless your soul sets them up in front of you. Hope the voyage is a long one.
May there be many a summer morning when,
with what pleasure, what joy,
you come into harbors seen for the first time;
may you stop at Phoenician trading stations
to buy fine things,
mother of pearl and coral, amber and ebony,
sensual perfume of every kind—
as many sensual perfumes as you can;
and may you visit many Egyptian cities
to gather stores of knowledge from their scholars. Keep Ithaka always in your mind.
Arriving there is what you are destined for.
But do not hurry the journey at all.
Better if it lasts for years,
so you are old by the time you reach the island,
wealthy with all you have gained on the way,
not expecting Ithaka to make you rich. Ithaka gave you the marvelous journey.
Without her you would not have set out.
She has nothing left to give you now. And if you find her poor, Ithaka won’t have fooled you.
Wise as you will have become, so full of experience,
you will have understood by then what these Ithakas mean.

May 6, 2017 - Comments Off on Commonplace #0050

Commonplace #0050

Extraordinary claims demand extraordinary proof.

If you eliminate the impossible, whatever remains, however improbable, must be the truth.

Among competing hypotheses, the one with the fewest assumptions should be selected. In simpler language, the simplest solution is correct.

The simpler a hypothesis is, the more easily it can be proved or falsified. A complex explanation for a phenomenon involves many factors which can be difficult to test or lead to issues with the repeatability of an experiment. As a consequence, the simplest solution which is consistent with the existing data is preferred.

May 1, 2017 - Comments Off on Commonplace #0049

Commonplace #0049

What gets measured gets done.

Never ascribe to malice that which is adequately explained by incompetence.

You talk when you cease to be at peace with your thoughts; And when you can no longer dwell in the solitude of your heart you live in your lips, and sound is a diversion and a pastime. And in much of your talking, your thinking is half murdered. 
For thought is a bird of space, that in a case of words may indeed unfold its wings but cannot fly. There are those among you who seek the talkative through fear of being alone. 
The silence of aloneness reveals to their eyes their naked selves and they would escape. 
And there are those who talk, and without knowledge or forethought reveal a truth which they themselves do not understand. 
And there are those who have the truth within them, but they tell it not in words.