What Is Old?

Having recently turned 40, the question “At what point does a person get ‘old’?” holds some interest for me. I like this idea from the above link, “A person becomes old when his mind is more occupied by memories than aspirations”. I like this because it doesn’t stigmatize being old and at the same time allows for becoming old to be a choice. But I think the more honest answer is “One becomes old the minute one is aware of how they are perceived by those who are young.” Old is not a state of mind – at least not your mind – old is inflicted on you by youth.

Gandhi’s Seven Blunders Of The World

I recently posted about the Nine Satanic Sins so I suppose it is only proper to post about Gandhi’s Seven Blunders Of The World.

Gandhi’s Seven dangers to human virtue is a list that Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi gave to his grandson Arun Gandhi, written on a piece of paper, on their final day together, shortly before his assassination. Gandhi suggested it was from these blunders springs the “passive violence” that plagues the world. The list consists of:

  • Wealth without work.
  • Pleasure without conscience.
  • Knowledge without character.
  • Commerce without morality.
  • Science without humanity.
  • Worship without sacrifice.
  • Politics without principle.

Tetrapharmakos: The Four-Part Cure

“The four-part cure,” is the Greek philosopher Epicurus’ remedy for leading the happiest possible life.

Don’t fear god,
Don’t worry about death;
What is good is easy to get, and
What is terrible is easy to endure

The “tetrapharmakos” was originally a compound of four drugs (wax, tallow, pitch and resin); the word has been used metaphorically by Epicurus and his disciples to refer to the four remedies for healing the soul.

Wednesday’s Wonderful World Of Wikipedia: The Grandfather Paradox

The paradox is this: Suppose a man traveled back in time and killed his biological grandfather before the latter met the traveler’s grandmother. As a result, one of the traveller’s parents and by extension, the traveler himself would never have been conceived. This would imply that he could not have traveled back in time after all, which in turn implies the grandfather would still be alive, and the traveler would have been conceived, allowing him to travel back in time and kill his grandfather. Thus each possibility seems to imply its own negation, a type of logical paradox. The grandfather paradox has been used to argue that backwards time travel must be impossible. However, other resolutions have also been advanced.

An equivalent paradox is known in philosophy as autoinfanticide — that is, going back in time and killing oneself as a baby — though when the word was first coined in a paper by Paul Horwich it was in the malformed version autofanticide.