A Question of the Liberal Arts: Why is Song a Gift from the Gods?

from a talk given at New College Franklin in the Fall of 2013 Main Texts: Homer’s Odyssey, Book 8, lines 42-45, 62-94, 483-499, 521-534 Homer’s Iliad, Book VI, lines 440-465 My goal in giving this talk is to inspire wonder and excitement about the program of study here, to encourage intellectual enthusiasm. With this goal … Continue reading A Question of the Liberal Arts: Why is Song a Gift from the Gods?

Order in the General: On Aristotle’s Vision of the Unmoved Mover and Cosmic Order

Why is there motion? The stars move, birds move, people move, air moves, even rocks move (when dropped). Why? In the Physics, Aristotle inquires into natural or movable bodies. The source of their motion is explored. But this mode of inquiry leaves him on the threshold of metaphysics and theology. To look into the causes of motion leads … Continue reading Order in the General: On Aristotle’s Vision of the Unmoved Mover and Cosmic Order

Greek is Regular; Greek is Fun: Memory, Science, and the Face of God

Adapted from a talk given for Perspective Student Weekend at New College Franklin, Spring 2017  There are times when a song is in my head, or more precisely, part of a song–a refrain which I repeat over and over. No matter how lovely or stirring such a refrain may be, it is imperfect apart from the whole, and … Continue reading Greek is Regular; Greek is Fun: Memory, Science, and the Face of God

Squeamish About Our Bodies (The Third of Three Meditations on A Brave New World)

Parenthood in A Brave New World is considered obscene. Motherhood, fatherhood, and family-life are looked upon, not only as antiquated, but as shameful. There is a powerful logic at work in the novel, a logic which is at work in our own culture. When sex ceases to be linked with marriage or reproduction, our bodies and our bodily existence can … Continue reading Squeamish About Our Bodies (The Third of Three Meditations on A Brave New World)