According to the Australian Newspaper’s John Armstrong, Kant believed that the fullest expression of humanity comes in three forms:
- The appreciation of natural beauty;
- The love of goodness; and
- Freedom of the mind.
Strange how we so often express our humanity in exact opposition to these very notions as we tear down natural beauty; exercise badness on a breathtaking scale and harness our every thought to rampant consumption and the pursuit of comfort.
At about ten o’clock last night, tired of television, I stepped outside and looked up at the sky. A damp evening with the threat of rain. Clouds, very low, hastened southwards like they were on a secret mission. They appeared almost sullenly silent like I had caught them up to mischief and slipping by in the darkness. Beyond them I saw much higher clouds, very still and set in a smattering of stars. Lines from a Tennyson poem trotted through my head: “Knowledge comes but wisdom lingers/And I linger on the shore/And the individual withers/And the world is more and more.”
So there I stood, humanity’s representative on the edge of the wide earth, lost in the wonder of nature, paving my way to hell with good intentions and free to think I was trapped.
(Cartoon from http://www.toothpastefordinner.com/)