The intellectual life was intense and exciting, and for those of us who accepted the Shimer philosophy, it was a secure refuge from the foibles of the outside world - including the academic world at large.
We don't exist unless there is someone who can see us existing, what we say has no meaning until someone can understand, while to be surrounded by friends is constantly to have our identity confirmed; their knowledge and care for us have the power to pull us from our numbness. In small comments, many of them teasing, they reveal they know our foibles and except them and so, in turn, accept that we have a place in the world.Alain de Botton
If, while hurrying ostensibly to the temple of truth, we hand the reins over to our personal interests which look aside at very different guiding stars, for instance at the tastes and foibles of our contemporaries, at the established religion, but in particular at the hints and suggestions of those at the head of affairs, then how shall we ever reach the high, precipitous, bare rock whereon stands the temple of truth?Arthur Schopenhauer
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