It is to Alice’s credit that she doesn't hesitate for a moment to discard her preconceptions when she comes across situations that patently refute them. In doing so, she displays an admirable readiness to encounter reality on its own terms, a receptive cast of mind that many philosophers would include among the most important “intellectual virtues” or character traits that assist in the discovery of truth.
George Dunn and Brian McDonald in Six Impossible Things Before Breakfastvia Brain Pickings I don't know what the hell was wrong with me yesterday that I felt so upset the entire day. I happened to read a bit more about the high school football rapists in some godforsaken town in this country and I also listened to some economists talk about the cost of the Iraq war -- not just in dollars but in lives lost, both Iraqis and Americans. I heard Terri Gross interview someone talking about the toll of that war and the one in Afghanistan on literally hundreds of thousands of American soldiers and how that toll will be tolling for decades and decades. I briefly thought about George W. Bush whacking weeds on his ranch in Texas and Dick Cheney exulting with no regrets at the evil he wrought. I wished that they, like the two young football players who raped a drunk sixteen year old girl could sit in a jail cell with regret imposed on them like a pall. If I were an evangelical, I'd pray for the soul of America which seems, on some days, to have been swallowed up and spit back out in the form of people fighting for their right to protect themselves with assault weapons. I don't know what the hell was wrong with me yesterday other than that, the news. I took a walk in my neighborhood by the purple lavender bush scraggly on the Orthodox lawn. I ran my hand over the papery pink bougainvillea draped over a chain link fence and squinted my eyes at a Louisiana sheriff's car parked alone. The encyclopedia I carry with me told me that vampires could very possibly be in that house behind the car. I might have eaten a dark-capped fungus and shrunk to a size commensurate with a long tunnel, the dark a mystery, light at the end.