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Showing posts from December, 2011

Drawing the Arrow, Some Reflections on our Historicity

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"Consider the herd grazing before you. These animals do not know what yesterday and today are but leap about, eat, rest, digest, and leap again; and so from morning to night and from day to day, only briefly concerned with their pleasure and displeasure, enthralled by the moment and for that reason neither melancholy nor bored. It is hard for a man to see this, for he is proud of being human and not an animal and yet regards its happiness with envy because he wants nothing other than to live like the animal, neither bored nor in pain, yet wants it in vain because he does not want it like the animal. Man may well ask the animal: why do you not speak to me of your happiness but only look at me? The animal does want to answer and say: because I always immediately forget what I wanted to say--but then it already forgot this answer and remained silent: so man could only wonder."
--F. Nietzsche "On the Advantages and Disadvantages of History for Life"

In this lovely pass…

Rethinking How to Train, Continued

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"The true romance which the world exists to realize is the transformation of genius to practical power." --R.W. Emerson, "Experience."

One of my fundamental philosophical convictions is that intelligence is primarily about attention. The reason why attention is so important is because we have limited "bandwidth" for processing. Sure, people who score high on the SAT maybe have a bit broader (or more intense) bandwidth than the rest. However, given the amount of information that we all have at our disposal for living, the relative difference in processing power among individual minds pales in comparison to the question of what those minds decide to process. This question of what we decide to devote our minds to is essentially the question of attention. Since this is such an important question, it's important that we turn a bit of our bandwidth to it every now and then.

Yeah, I'm basically talking about thinking outside the box. Or at least in a di…

Each Good Effort

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The following is a guest post by new contributor Nader Abadir. He has his own blog, Sneakers and Books, which reflects on his religion and running. Check it out.

You will enjoy this one.

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I don’t like to admit it, but I started running to lose weight. Worse yet, I got past the initial hurdles because I was captivated by the story of a famous “Ultramarathon Man.” Worst of all, I picked up that book because the dude on the cover was ripped.
I suppose these are “admissions” because I’d feel cooler if a Zenish statement -- like “Runners run.” -- had applied to me all along.

Like many new, middle-aged runners, I was active as a kid. I played organized baseball into my teens. I never hit for power, but was always proud of my speed. Mookie Wilson, Vince Coleman, Tim Raines, Lenny Dykstra, Rickey Henderson; these were the guys that got me excited. I had never heard the names Pre, Kennedy, or Rogers. “Salazar” evoked “Luis.” From about age 14, my afternoons, weekends and nights wer…