Mol (mollyringle) wrote,

Philosophy is / At its best when they put it / Into haiku form

Got via email, from my mom, who hobnobs with the Oregon State U. Philosophy Dept. They're from the book "Haiku U.: From Aristotle to Zola, 100 Great Books in 17 Syllables" by David M. Bader.


By Zeus, Socrates!
It seems you're right once again!
Time for your hemlock.

Marcus Aurelius

As grapes become wine,
so must one accept one's fate.
Die well. Like a grape.

"The Confessions"
St. Augustine

This is just to say
I screwed around. Forgive me.
I enjoyed it so.

"The Prince"
Niccolo Machiavelli

What I learned at court:
Being more feared than loved--good.
Getting poisoned--bad.

"Discourse on Method"
Rene Descartes

If I think, I am.
If I don't exist, how do
I know about me?

"The Wealth of Nations"
Adam Smith

Supply meets demand.
The invisible hand claps.
Capitalist Zen.

"Das Kapital"
Karl Marx

October winds blow.
Your contradictions doom you,
capitalist swine.

"Common Sense"
Thomas Paine

Fellow patriots,
wake up and smell the taxed tea.
Independence now!


Substance has essence.
Form adds whatness to thatness.
Whatsits have thinghood.

"Candide, or, Optimism"

A naive young man
learns that bad things do happen
to smug philosophes.

"The Federalist Papers"
Alexander Hamilton, James Madison, John Jay

The Constitution--
behold our work and marvel.
No Bill of Rights? Whoops.

"The Critique of Pure Reason"
Immanuel Kant

We are born knowing
circles to be circular.
We just don't know it.

"Discipline and Punish:
The Birth of the Prison"
Michel Foucault

Carceral discourse,
polyvalently deployed.
Hot air gently blows.

"Phenomenology of Spirit"

Thesis: A whole pig.
Antithesis: Butcher shop.
Synthesis: Schnitzel.

"Two Treatises of Government"
John Locke

Orange butterfly,
you have no divine right to
be called the "monarch."

"An Essay on the Principle of Population"
Thomas Malthus

People multiply,
food does not. The good news is
there are wars and plagues.

"Being and Nothingness"
Jean-Paul Sartre

Gentle Left Bank sun--
bluebirds chirp their empty songs.
We are all condemned.

"Tao Te Ching"
Lao Tzu

The eternal Tao.
To know it is not to know.
What is it? Don't ask.

"Walden, or, Life in the Woods"
Henry David Thoreau

Morning: Pond-gazing.
Afternoon: Berry-picking.
What a hectic day.

"The Social Contract"
Jean-Jacques Rousseau

All vote. All consent.
It's like a big family.
Not mine, but someone's.

"Also Sprach Zarathustra"

Kindness is weakness!
Abhor pity, worship strength!
Be an uber-jerk!

"The Varieties of Religious Experience"
William James

Let's be pragmatic.
Saints, monks, mystics--their faith works.
So what if they're nuts?

Thomas More

An austere commune--
"Utopia." It's Greek for
"Nice, if you're a monk."

"Democracy in America"
Alexis de Tocqueville

So free! So un-French!
We must learn from their ideas
but not their cuisine.

And one more...

Michel de Montaigne

Genteel French musings--
life, death, odd smells, my mustache.
Today's topic: Thumbs.
Tags: books, funny, philosophy

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