Sunday, October 30, 2005

"Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it"

The above quotation is from George Santayana (1863 - 1952), a Spanish philosopher. Many of you will know it, and I suspect, most of you disregard it as a glib truism. But I believe it. Without the knowing of our past, how can we know where we came from, who we are and where we are going?

Without knowing our history, how can we appreciate (and forgive and assimilate) those traits in our make-up as a people that are hopelessly out of kilter with modern society? Yet treasure our barbarous past, while retaining some remnant of that heroic spirit, should history present us with the need to depend on it again?

To know how we were moulded is to know where we are going. And to give us sign posts as to how to get to a better place.

"We can learn from history how past generations thought and acted, how they responded to the demands of their time and how they solved their problems. We can learn by analogy, not by example, for our circumstances will always be different than theirs were. The main thing history can teach us is that human actions have consequences and that certain choices, once made, cannot be undone. They foreclose the possibility of making other choices and thus they determine future events." Gerda Lerner (b. 1920)

So stop it with the gip you lot!

As Winston said, "History will be kind to me for I intend to write it!"

8 Comments:

Blogger Span Ows said...

I agree...NO, really, I agree entirely...and I got and A in history and would probably ahve done it at Uni if I could have been bothered...

now, don't get shirty just because me and lena think you're 'not all there'....chain mail now is it!...

Sun Oct 30, 06:26:00 PM GMT  
Blogger Span Ows said...

I must admit that I didn't know it was Santayana who is accredited with that very famous quote...Spaniards aren't great philosophers as a rule...

Sun Oct 30, 06:29:00 PM GMT  
Blogger Gavin Corder said...

Shirty? It was a coif not a hauberk.

Mon Oct 31, 03:14:00 AM GMT  
Blogger Span Ows said...

bonjour Gavin de corder...ahohihoiho....

Mon Oct 31, 10:23:00 AM GMT  
Blogger Gavin Corder said...

I thought you were going to the Caribbean - are you in France?

Mon Oct 31, 12:00:00 PM GMT  
Blogger Span Ows said...

Only at the airport in Paris...on my way back from the Caribbean (working!...YES I WAS!)

Mon Oct 31, 07:35:00 PM GMT  
Blogger Gavin Corder said...

Yeah! I believe you. Thousands wouldn't!

Mon Oct 31, 08:23:00 PM GMT  
Blogger Span Ows said...

just as well ...it wasn't all work!

Tue Nov 01, 11:27:00 PM GMT  

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