Thursday, May 28, 2015
Tuesday, May 19, 2015
@brainpicker Maria Popova and @KristaTippett , doing more than their share to counter intellectual boredom. "There is no shortcut for the conquest of meaning." Delightful conversation.
Ms. Popova: As a culture — you're right. We seem somehow bored with thinking. We want to instantly know.(continues at On Being)
Ms. Tippett: [laughs] Right, right.
Ms. Popova: And there's this epidemic of listicles. Why think about what constitutes a great work of art when you can skim the “20 Most Expensive Paintings in History?”
Ms. Tippett: Right.
Ms. Popova: And I'm very guided by this desire to counter that in myself because I am, like everybody else, a product of my time and my culture. And I remember, there's a really beautiful commencement address that Adrienne Rich gave in 1977 in which she said that an education is not something that you get but something that you claim. And I think that's very much true of knowledge itself. The reason we're so increasingly intolerant of long articles and why we skim them, why we skip forward even in a short video that reduces a 300-page book into a three-minute animation — even in that we skip forward — is that we've been infected with this kind of pathological impatience that makes us want to have the knowledge but not do the work of claiming it. I mean, the true material of knowledge is meaning. And the meaningful is the opposite of the trivial. And the only thing that we should have gleaned by skimming and skipping forward is really trivia. And the only way to glean knowledge is contemplation. And the road to that is time. There's nothing else. It's just time.
Ms. Tippett: Right, right.
Ms. Popova: There is no shortcut for the conquest of meaning. And ultimately, it is meaning that we seek to give to our lives...
Wednesday, May 13, 2015
With evidence mounting that sitting for long stretches of time is unhealthy, many of us naturally wonder how best to respond. Should we stand up, or is merely standing insufficient? Must we also stroll or jog or do jumping jacks?
A new study offers some helpful perspective, suggesting that even a few minutes per hour of moving instead of remaining in a chair might substantially reduce the harms of oversitting...
...those who walked around after standing, replacing some of their sitting time with a light-intensity activity like strolling, gained a substantial benefit in terms of mortality risk... (continues)