Line Monarch refuses to believe in Flatland

Suhas Mathur introduced me to Flatland.

Makes a strong case for why all atheists should choose to be agnostic atheists instead.

You ask me to believe there is another Line besides that which my senses indicate, and another motion besides that of which I am daily conscious. I, in return, ask you to describe in words or indicate by motion that other Line of which you speak. Instead of moving, you merely exercise some magic art of vanishing and returning to sight; and instead of any lucid description of your new World, you simply tell me the numbers and sizes of some forty of my retinue, facts known to any child in my capital. Can anything be more irrational or audacious? Acknowledge your folly or depart from my dominions.


A viable alternative to “Hope for the Flowers” ?

From Orbiting the Giant Hairball : A Corporate Fool’s Guide to Surviving with Grace

If we were to think of waterskiing as a metaphor for leading and following, the person at the wheel, in the boat, dry, would represent the leader. And the skier in the water, wet, would be the follower.

Wherever the leader goes, the follower goes. If, for reasons unknown to the follower, the leader decides to steer the boat though an area where clusters of reeds are growing up out of the water, about three feet tall, the reaction of the follower might be:

Why are we goin’ over there? This is gonna hurt. And it’s gonna hurt me, not you!“

If you are a skier in this situation, you have at least a couple of options another than being whipped painfully through the reeds.

Option #1:

You can let go of the towline. Become an entrepreneur — on your own, in the middle of the lake.

Option #2:

You can become a better waterskier. Learn to ski out beyond the confines of the boat’s wake, way ‘round to the right, thus dodging some of the threatening reeds. Then, describing a great broad arc, ski back over the wake, wake again and way ‘round to the left, avoiding more reeds.

Every point on the arc is a point of legitimate following.

Alain de Botton in “Status Anxiety”

Only as we mature does affection begin to depend on achievement: being polite, succeeding at school and later, acquiring rank and prestige. Such efforts may attract the interest of others, but the underlying emotional craving may not be so much to dazzle because of our deeds as to recapture the tenor of the bountiful, indiscriminate petting we received in return for arranging wooden bricks on the kitchen floor, for having a soft, plump body and wide trusting eyes.