Photo Captions

(1) Perspective -- College Station Texas, home of Texas A&M University.

"The perspectivism of the modern era that is associated with the name of Nietzsche [1844-1900] originated as philosophical criticism of the claim that only one perspective could represent truth." (Belting, p. 18) 

Belting, Hans, Florence & Baghdad: Renaissance Art and Arab Science, Cambridge, Mass., Belknap Press of Harvard University, 2011.

"… the illusion of the artistic rendering of a nerve stimulus into images is, if not the mother, then at least the grandmother of every concept." (Nietzsche, p. 32)

Nietzsche, Friedrich, "On Truth and Lie in a NonMoral Sense" (1873), in Taylor Carman (ed., trans.), On Truth and Untruth: Selected Writings Friedrich Nietzsche, New York, HarperCollins, c. 2010, pp. 15-49.

(2) Lucas Cranach the Elder - Stag Hunt of Elector Frederick the Wise (1529)
[this image is in the public domain]

"[Rousseau's 1754 "stag hunt" parable] That is how [primitive] men may have gradually acquired a crude idea of mutual commitments and the advantage of fulfilling them, but only insofar as their present and obvious interest required it, because they knew nothing of foresight, and far from concerning themselves with the distant future, they did not even think of the next day.  If a group of them set out to take a deer, they were fully aware that they would all have to remain faithfully at their posts in order to succeed; but if a hare happened to pass near one of them, there can be no doubt that he pursued it without a qualm, and that once he had caught his prey, he cared little whether or not he  had made his companions miss theirs." (Rousseau, p. 175)

Rousseau, Jean-Jacques, "Discourse on Inequality Among Men," in The Essential Rousseau, Lowell Bair (trans.), New York, Penguin, 1983, pp. 125-202.

Professor Vincent Crawford has noted the parallels of this* and Rousseau's 1754 "Stag Hunt" parable in his "Discourse on Inequality Among Men."

*[Reprinted in N. Mankiw and D. Romer (eds.), Coordination Failures and Real Rigidities, New Keynesian Economics Vol. II, MIT Press Readings in Economics (B. Friedman and L. Summers, eds.), Cambridge, Mass., M.I.T. Press (1991), reprinted from Quarterly Journal of Economics 98 (August 1983).]

(3) Nadir Divan-begi Madrasah, Bukhara (1622-23, with Zoroastrian Semurgs, "birds of happiness")

"The first stanza [of a particular Rilke poem] says that there is normal, everyday, external space, in which birds fly around and so on, and then there's a space inside you; the outer environment is less familiar, more dangerous, you lose yourself out there.  Rilke makes this point relatively often.  The second stanza describes the two spaces in ways more particular to this poem: the idea is similar to the cliché that everyone sees things from their own perspective, but instead of the metaphor of 'perspective,' or angle of view, Rilke's metaphor is of an object and its background, or figure and ground in painting terms.  He says that each of us takes our inner world and flings it out past whatever is out there so that it constitutes the background or negative space against which the object in the world is delimited.  In this metaphor, what matters is not the angle you see from but the fact that things are undefined unless they stand out against something, and what they stand out against comes from inside you." (Rilke, Damion Searls, pp. 174-175)

Rilke, Rainer Maria [1875-1926] The Inner Sky: poems, notes, dreams by, selected and translated by Damion Searls, Jaffrey, New Hampshire, David R. Godine, c. 2010.

(4) Where is the longest stretch of undeveloped barrier island in the world?

Photo: Malaquite Beach, Padre Island National Seashore, Texas

(5) Blue Man Berber

(6) Why do Inca buildings hold together even in earthquakes?

(7) 1117 is not the address!

(8) Texas Hill Country Vineyard

(9) Rumi

"...Sadruddin Qonawi, stepson and greatest interpreter of Ibn 'Arabi (d. 1240), whose mystical system was to pervade the entire Islamic world and largely colored all later commentaries on Rumi's work.  Sadruddin and Maulana [Rumi] were of nearly equal age, and the great philosopher died shortly before the enraptured poet.  Their approaches to Sufism and the Divine Reality differed: the one followed the way of Knowledge, or gnosis, the other the way of Love; yet they were friends and respected each other, for both recognized that there are as many ways to God as there are human beings." * 

(Annemarie Schimmel, Rumi's World: The Life and Work of the Great Sufi Poet, p. 7.)  [emphasis mine].

[*Almost certainly inherently correct given the structure of thought, the structure of the brain, and the variety of experience?]