Bertrand Russell

Bertrand Arthur William Russell (1872 – 1970) was a British philosopher, a mathematician and by extension, a logician.
I quite liked his reasoning and theories of certain aspects of life and mankind in general but there are instances where such logic may not be so applicable in today’s vida loca.
Still, there are some gems which I can share here:-
1. "Many people when they fall in love look for a little haven of refuge from the world, where they can be sure of being admired when they are not admirable, and praised when they are not praiseworthy." ( Commentaire:- No wonder some people have lower ‘requirements’ than most others. Good one.)
2. "The degree of one’s emotion varies inversely with one’s knowledge of the facts – the less you know the hotter you get." (Commentaire:- How true; folks get agitated when they’re still groping in the dark and even when they got to know something which they’ve been itching to know better)
3. "Man is a rational animal – so at least I have been told. Throughout a long life, I have looked diligently for evidence in favor of this statement, but so far I have not had the good fortune to come across it, though I have searched in many countries spread over three continents" (Commentaire: – Ask me who a rational human is and I’ll point to you a dead person. We only find the rationale of life after we die; after all, we’re only puppets in a large play for the amusement and entertainment of the Gods far above.)
4. "The habit of looking to the future and thinking that the whole meaning of the present lies in what it will bring forth is a pernicious one. There can be no value in the whole unless there is value in the parts. Life is not to be conceived on the analogy of a melodrama in which the hero and heroine go through incredible misfortunes for which they are compensated by a happy ending. I live and have my day, my son succeeds me and has his day, his son in turn succeeds him. What is there in all this to make a tragedy about?" (Commentaire:- Make the best of each day and don’t think too much about the future. Thinking labels something good or bad. And everything happens just as it should be. There’s no agitation in adversity when you know that)
5. "Man is a credulous animal, and must believe something; in the absence of good grounds for belief, he will be satisfied with bad ones." (Commentaire: –Yep, Man has to believe something in order to feel comfortable about something. Man must confirm his belief with decent grounds and may be happy to settle with less than perfect ones.)
6. "Uncertainty, in the presence of vivid hopes and fears, is painful, but must be endured if we wish to live without the support of comforting fairy tales. It is not good either to forget the questions that philosophy asks, or to persuade ourselves that we have found indubitable answers to them" (Commentaire: – Quite the same as item 5 above. But here, the action is proactive in that in order to transcend the mentality of living in the realms of fantasy and of its fantastic ideals; it’s better to knuckle down and get on with our purpose in life – to do the best in everything we set out to do. Even if it’s burglary or performing a heart surgery, do it well. If not, don’t bother doing it.
7. "I once devised a test question which I put to many people to discover whether they were pessimists. The question was: ‘If you had the power to destroy the world, would you do so?’" (Commentaire: – It’s up to you on this one!)
Till next time,
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1 Response to Bertrand Russell

  1. Sabah says:

    That’s insightful, Arthur. Personally I only enjoyed Russell’s "Principia Mathematica". Ludwig Wittgenstein surpasses him by miles. Do read the latter’s "Tractatus Logico Philosophica". I am sure you will love it!

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