Philosopher’s Luck

The best things that could ever happen to a young person today: rejection, isolation, exclusion. To be left out is to be left alone, which is the most precious gift that can be bestowed in an age of suffocating social life. To be disliked or ignored is to be spared the horizon-limiting sameness of success, i.e., fitting in, thus preserving for him nature’s wide eyes of na├»ve investigation, as against the shrunken vista of cultural uniformity that Nietzsche, speaking of nineteenth century Germany — though he could just as well have been speaking of any “enlightened” society today — pithily encapsulates with the ironic phrase, “our beer.” To be on the outside looking in is, in the end, to see the inside as a whole — which is to grasp what the inside really is, and therefore to understand, as those on the inside never can, that the inside is merely a provisional whole, not the whole.


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