The Aphorism Project

aphorisms Jan 04, 2020

Bits of wisdom.

And puzzles.

I savor aphorisms. I roll them through my mind, try and discover situations and scenarios where they fit, and raise them as a mirror for my own hypocrisies and biases.

As a kid, I spent countless hours studying the books of Proverbs and Ecclesiastes. Short, quippy sayings from the Old Testament to try and explain the human condition in the 1980s and 90s. I’m not sure how well it balanced wisdom with neolithic weird, but I certainly memorized a lot of verses.

As an adult, I’d bring “Geary’s Guide to the World’s Great Aphorists” to church with me. When my attention wandered, I’d crack open the pages and begin highlighting the sayings I wanted to memorize. I’d make a game of blending aphorisms with the weekly sermon messages (usually to ill effect).

The aphorism project has stewed in the back of my mind for many a year. As with most things, there’s an excellent aphorism for such procrastination.

By the streets of “by and by” one arrives at the house of “never.”

Cervantes

2020 is the year to commit. I write more frequently (if not better – the two hopefully have an eventual correlation). Time to fulfill the idea.

So what is the project?

I’m keeping this simple.

  1. I post an aphorism (and, at times, related aphorisms).
  2. I post a few thoughts and/or questions related to the aphorism.
  3. Sometimes those thoughts turn into an essay.

The larger goal of the project is to commit to memory certain sayings while reflecting on their wisdom (or lack of wisdom).

Part of learning.

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