2016 of the Unexamined Life

Well, I thought it was a good year.

For one thing, Trump won. I still think it’s great, if only because it has all the experts stumped and flapping. I like the idea of Trump being president here too. I lie in bed and grin in the darkness.

For another, Hillary Clinton lost. It at least gives us an opportunity to catch our breath. And it was just. What a satisfactory outcome!

The third thing that made this a great year is that I did not end up on academic probation. Maybe next year, but not this year. I’ve never sweated grades before. Now I do.

Fourth thing that was great is that my true friend in Bogota has me helping him by Skype. I am so pleased that anybody thinks I have something to contribute that it has been a great boost.

One of the big things that made this year good was the Trinity debate. It was almost like old time Remonstrans. In terms of realizing what is going on, it was exactly like Remonstrans. The Trinity debate and Remonstrans are the best things that have happened to me on the internet.

It has been a good year for my Platonism. My grasp of Plato has matured, my sense of it through the ages has developed, I’ve made a friend of Eriugena, and the vestiges of an argument are accumulating. Best of all, the Great Man is not annoyed, though I think he still thinks it’s weird.

I’ve learned two important related things this year. The first is about distinguishing what is really interesting from what one may find oneself interested in. It is a difficult thing. All knowledge is personal and participatory; the question is how. The great thing is, I begin to see where my mistake is. The second is that I’ve understood that you can want to be a writer without having something to say. And you can be a writer who has said all you have to say. You have to have something to say. It may seem obvious, but desire is a blinding thing. Everybody will agree with that, but now I know what it means.

Another thing that has been great is that I’ve been teaching 3rd and 4th grade Sunday school and it appears to be working. (I talked to a friend who went off to be a teacher and then quickly gave it up. We figured out that the only reward for teaching is that the students are learning. There are no other real rewards in most teaching situations, and no other motivation. That it should be that way is a good thing too.)

To continue would be tedious, but I could.


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