Sunday, March 30, 2014

Weekly Resource - Another Sort of Learning, a Mom resource

A few weeks ago, when I was still allowed to enter into book stores and good wills, I came across Liberal Learning by James V. Schall and I had to get it.  Don't tell my husband but the link actually takes you to the full text of the pamphlet - oops.  It is a very small volume - so it's a good overview.  It is addressed to college students and their parents to help them realize some of the shortcomings of the current college system while encouraging you to pursue some real learning.  It is in keeping and, in some ways, an introduction to his larger work Another Sort of Learning.  Really you should just follow the link so that you can read the subtitle - which is long and amusing - which is indicative of his style.  This work is a collection of essays on education and other assorted topics along with interesting "booklists".  His booklists are not standard fare and are meant for the students seeking classical and not so classical resources that are worth your time and interest.  

A few years ago I read his book On the Unseriousness of Human Affairs and loved it.  Actually, I should find and re-read my notes (common placing before I even knew there was such a thing because it was a great book).  He is the one who got me to thinking about actually reading Chesterton.  That book helped me to remember to enjoy the little things in life and stop being a perfectionist about things.  Some things are worth doing just because they are fun and part of a community.

Anyway, if you are thinking about summer reading for yourself you might want to look over this little book and pick out some titles that aren't typically discussed but are probably worth your time.

Here is a quote from Liberal Learning:

The object of self-discipline in the best sense then is not ourselves.  That probably sounds strange.  The classical writers, I think, used to relate self-discipline to liberty.  The person who was most free was the one who had the most control over himself.  The person who was most unfree was the one who was ruled by pleasures, money or power.  Self-discipline does not, however, solve the question of what is knowledge or truth or good; self-discipline is a means, not an end in itself.
There is an intimate connection between our moral life and our intellectual life. Sometime I think the history of our times can be described as an argument about whether or not this connection is true.  Self discipline is the beginning of wisdom, not its end.  
Really, anything by Schall is probably engaging and worth your time.

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