My Socrates, My Plato, My Darwin etc.

My Socrates is the late Dr. Karl F. Robinson, Northwestern University. (The function of pedagogical practice is to channel the activity of the organism by the processes, defined in detail.)

My Plato is the late Dr. Clarence T. Simon, Northwestern University. (Verified, contrasted to intuitive knowledge, or self-evident knowledge. One cannot verify knowledge by introducing another’s own subjective evaluations — let alone his own — which are supposed to support what he knows.)

My Darwin is the late Gerald Heard. (“It is at least clear that as Individualism is a neurosis and that man, attempting to cure that unbearable condition, makes his life and civilization only worse by attempting to escape into a pre-individual condition, the only real cure would be by emergence on to a post- or supra-individual state.” And then: “The hypothesis put forward here is that man’s development when it ceased to be physiological became psychological. His history is his specific evolution. He evolves mentally.” [The first physical, unconscious-blind; the second technical, conscious-unreflective; the third psychical, inter-conscious-reflective.] Heard was followed by Julian Jaynes in my Darwinian development, The Origin of Consciousness in the Breakdown of the Bicameral Mind.

My Nicolaus Copernicus (the paradigm changer, from geocentric to heliocentric cosmology) is Jeremy Rifkin. (In The Empathic Civilization and Entropy, he is telling the world our existing world view is crumbling and what will replace it.)

My “King of Pop” is Richard Wagner (Ring Cycle), or Gustav Mahler. (And Ravel. And Glazunov. And Gershwin. And Porter, Fauré, Khachaturian, and so on and on and on…. I am a choral person. Sang in choirs in grade school, high school, university, the Congo-Uni Church — while showering, or working, or always humming, tunes from all those named previously, sotto voce. I won second prize in an amateur contest once when I was in the 3rd or 4th grade, doing imitations, but one especially, an orchestral rendition of Tchaikovsky’s “Waltz of the Flowers”.)

[The greatest melodies, ever? For humming? The tenor’s song in Der Rosenkavalier. Hans Sachs song, “Morgenlied”, in Die Meistersinger. “Nessun Dorma” from Turandot. Then there’s — well, I could go on for a very, very long time. There are the very great trios, such as that at the end of Der Rosenkavalier, worthy for inclusion in my humming repertoire. I do all three parts. And the duets, such as the “Evening Prayer” in Humperdinck’s Hansel and Gretel — I once long ago heard Carol Burnet and her show guest, Julie Andrews, sit on the edge of the stage in front of her TV audience and sing that duet to enormous effect.]

I am having trouble with “My Shakespeare”. I am leaning toward Emily Dickenson, but–

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