Thought of the Day: Making History

Another one of the great truths we miss, thanks to an illusion created by historical accounts (not the same thing as history per se); society ought not be made for the extraordinary, but for the ordinary.

The people who end up being written about are generally not the people who make up the general running and functioning of a society. Their experiences are, by definition, atypical and hence dangerous to use as a guide for structuring society.

One thought on “Thought of the Day: Making History

  1. Furthermore, it’s largely for their defense of or success in securing the ordinary that the extraordinary are acclaimed. A man who fights a thousand Mongols in the wilderness and dies alone may be forgotten, but a man who drives out the Mongols and establishes a wall to keep watch against their return, then rebuilds the cities of the empire and lays down the law within them, will be sung forever. A mere fanatic who frees himself from worldly cares living in a barrel atop a mountain might be a local legend, but a saint lays down his life for the good of others (even if only spiritually).

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