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Henry David Thoreau was an American essayist and poet, commonly known as the “the hermit of Walden.” Thoreau did not intend to live as a hermit and actually accepted guests, he simply hoped to isolate himself away from society to give himself a more objective understanding of the world.
His project in the woods of Walden was inspired by transcendentalist philosophy. What is transcendentalism you ask? According to the fantastic Internets, Transcendentalism is…
“A 19th-century idealistic philosophical and social movement that taught that divinity pervades all nature and humanity.”
“Ambitious and imaginative vagueness in thought, imagery, or diction.”
“A philosophy that asserts the primacy of the spiritual and transcendental over the material and empirical.”
Thanks for checking out Philosophical Swag. And remember to keep coming back for more Swag Quotes!
Carl Sagan would have been 77 today. Out of all the people I have ever read about in school, watched videos about on TV, or just surfed for on the internet, Carl Sagan takes the cake as my favorite scientist/person of interest in current culture. Yeah, there are awesome actors like James Franco, or talented athletes I enjoy watching, but none of them have provoked me to think about my surroundings and appreciate the beauty of the Cosmos like Carl Sagan has.
Posted below is a great compilation of footage following Carl Sagan’s death.
“Human history can be viewed as a slowly dawning awareness that we are members of a larger group.” – Carl Sagan
Thanks for stopping by Philosophical Swag! Also, don’t forget to check out my post from September when I labeled him, “Patriot of the Week.”
21st century, American, Books, David J. Rothkopf, Energy Policy, Green Technology, History, Ideas, Kim Kardashian, Kim Kardashian Divorce, literature, Obama, Philosophical Swag, President Barack Obama, PS Patriot, PS Patriot of the Week, Reform, Technology, United States of America
David J. Rothkopf has Philosophical Swag. Mr. Rothkopf is a well-respected author and foreign policy analyst who is also a visiting scholar at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace and contributor to Foreignpolicy.com.
I choose David Rothkopf for this week’s Patriot of the Week because he has hit the nail on the head. How do you describe the Kardashian Divorce, the Arab Spring, and the Occupy Wall Street Movement? I urge you to take a look at Rothkopf’s most recent article over at ForeignPolicy.com.
The cleverly titled piece, “The Kardashian Era: Forging an identity for our times,” goes on to poke fun at the ridiculouslessness of the Kardashian Fascination and describes what important events transpired during those sacred 72 days.
My favorite excerpt,
“And in that time, this simple beautiful act, this daring leap into love, elevated and distracted us and allowed us to cling to hope. Because if these two virtual strangers with no education and almost no talent other than ambition itself could will themselves into a marriage that made them millions — even if it did last no longer than the Tweets by which they announced each of their carefully calculated mood-swings and spats — then maybe riches were not just for Wall Street geniuses who went to Harvard, maybe TV shows were not just for the beautiful or the gifted, maybe marriage was not just for those who found real love. Maybe sub-average, sub-interesting, sub-useful people could fake their way through this mess just like the big time financial fraudsters and get loads of good gifts, press coverage, and big fat checks for their efforts.”
In another recent article by Rothkopf, he states why energy policy has hit such a road bump,
“But of course, the reason an energy policy is so essential is because real energy policy is not just about green jobs, it is about every single job in the United States. Every business depends on access to energy. So do individual citizens and the economy as a whole. Energy, the largest industrial sector in the world, touches every other sector in profound ways. Interruptions in supply, spikes in prices, changes in regulation, shifts in demand, and innovations in technology have ripple effects that go from border to border, from the top to the bottom of the economy.”
Rothkopf went on to explain that President Obama should initiate an inter-agency effort to develop a national energy policy and lead the way just in time before the next election. I also agree that America can no longer wait for a revamp in energy policy. It would put so many people back to work and be the best investment this nation could possibly make at the current time being.
Rothkopf not only provides the best description of what is going on right now, but he does it with comedy and grace. My hat’s off to you sir. Keep the great insight coming and keep it funny!
Don’t forget to check out Rothkopf’s upcoming book, Power, Inc.: The Epic Rivalry Between Big Business and Government–and the Reckoning That Lies Ahead.
Confession: I may or may not have a poster of Kim Kardashian in my room… regardless, I couldn’t agree more with Mr. Rothkopf.
Thanks for checking out Philosophical Swag!
American, Apple, Author, Books, Costume Ideas, Halloween Costumes, Historical Halloween Costumes, History, Ideas for Halloween Costumes, Philosophical Halloween Costumes, Philosophical Swag, Science Halloween Costumes, Steve Jobs, Technology, Thomas Edison
Since Halloween is right around the corner, I thought it might be helpful to provide some possible options for costumes this year.
Albert Einstein – crazy white hair.. white apron
Leonardo Da Vinci – paint brush, old clothes from renaissance era, maybe have coffee stained plans for inventions in your back pocket?
Michelangelo – paint smock and paint brush, you get the idea…
Thomas Edison – era appropriate clothing with a light bulb
Pablo Picasso – (see Da Vinci and Michelangelo) maybe try the one ear thing
Louis Pasteur – something with milk?
Any philosophers – I know it’s general but… wear a toga?
Other Individuals to consider:
Nikola Tesla, Immanuel Kant, Aristotle, Thomas Jefferson, Plato, Marie Curie, Elizabeth I, Jane Austen, Charlotte Brontë, Golda Meir, Jane Adams, Winston Churchill, Benjamin Franklin, William Shakespeare, Wolfgang Amadeus, Mozart, Socrates, Sir Isaac Newton, Martin Luther, John Locke, Charles Darwin, Salvador Dali, Sigmund Freud, Napoleon Bonaparte, George Washington, Rumi, , The Wright Brothers, Bill Gates, Steve Jobs, Jim Henson
Hope this helps! Thanks for reading Philosophical Swag!
The leaves are falling and it’s that time of the year again, Halloween. Halloween is easily one of my favorite annual traditions I choose to embrace. Regardless of what you have typically done in the past, I strongly recommend thrifting! I went yesterday afternoon and found some pretty good stuff.
I’m going as Patrick Bateman from the classic book and movie, American Psycho. If you havn’t heard of it; Get it in the know! It’s a classic. Interestingly enough, Christian Bale was warned if he did the role his career would be over… guess they were wrong! My costume below. Tie $2 at Goodwill. All other accessories were not procured thrifting but actually found for under $1 at the local Dollar Tree (except the paint smock).
Note: I was going to post the scene from the movie I am taking my costume from, but it’s pretty explicit. So, if you are still curious just YouTube, “American Psycho Paul Allen Scene.” Screen Cap Below.
Anyways thrifting is a great way to get your costume materials on the cheap and maybe just maybe; build up your personal library? All the books you see posted below I got for only $14 at my local Goodwill.
I have been steadily building up my personal library through this strategy and encourage you to get your Philosophical Swag on in a similar fashion! Hope you have a great time thrifting and finding your Halloween essentials!
Extra: If you are interested… Interview with Charlie Rose, Christian Bale, Director Mary Harron, and Bret Easton Ellis.
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I was fortunate enough to hear Dr. Michio Kaku speak last night and all I can say is he is an extremely entertaining, intelligent human being. Many have called him one of the best “popularizers” of science since Carl Sagan, and for good reason! After seeing him give an hour and a half long lecture on the future of technology in the next 20 years; I really can’t deny it.
Dr. Kaku spoke about a variety of cool technology we should all be excited about, but his lecture mainly focused on Moore’s Law and how as time progresses computer processing and technology (in general) gets cheaper and cheaper. He had one particular point that was really wild, about the little computer chips in a birthday card that sings to you, you know the kind that is disposable these days, yet is still more advanced than what all the Allied forces were using during WWII! He also explained that technology will be layered into almost everything, so we will have products like a tech-enhanced toilet that will allow us to find out if we have cancer cells in our body ten years earlier than currently possible. The possibilities are mind-boggling.
I have also posted a video of Dr. Kaku explaining how America manages to compete in the scientific community, even though our public school system is failing to produce a high enough volume of competitive, scientific minds these days.
I will post a much more in-depth look at Dr. Kaku in the near future. Thanks for reading!
A Clockwork Orange, Anonymous, Anthony Burgess, Books, Cat's Cradle, high school, Ken Kesey, Kurt Vonnegut, literature, One Flew over the Cukoo's Nest, Philosophical Swag, Quote, Radiohead, reading, William Shakespeare
First and foremost, I’m not arguing he shouldn’t be taught in schools,
I’m not arguing he isn’t one of the most important writers of all time. Yes, he invented and gave so much to the English language. Yeah, we use his delightful little sayings all the time, like “dead as a doornail,” “for goodness sake,” and “tongue tied”. All I’m saying is: the current English curriculum and its standard dry content turns America’s youth away from reading as a real hobby during their first couple years of high school.
Either way, he is a man that deserves much respect. But I can’t stress enough how I think his literature needs to be taught in a different way. I understand his themes are timeless and everyone can relate regardless of the time period or advancement of society… but it’s too dry and it turns away young people. It’s language makes it hard to get into the book and story. Maybe for upper-level English classes in college, but don’t scare them away when they’re still young and impressionable.
In my own personal public high school experience, I was forced to read the likes of Shakespeare and other titles in a similar vein like Jane Eyre and The Scarlett Letter. Yet I was lucky, at the same time I was afforded the opportunity to venture outside the realm of classical literature. I read Kurt Vonnegut’s Cat’s Cradle, Ken Kesey’s One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest, and even the highly controversial title by Anthony Burgess’ A Clockwork Orange. These are the kind of titles that got me hooked into the world of literature.
Regardless of your opinion on Shakespeare, a new movie titled Anonymous is coming out and looks very intriguing…
Check out this Radiohead infused trailer (Everything in its Right Place – Kid A)
According to the Anonymous trailer description…
What’s your take on this? Do you have a plan to engage America’s youth?? More teen paranormal romance novels?