Nurturing Reasoning – Daily Quote


The image above is “The School of Athens” (Scuola di Athene) a fresco created by Raphael (Raffaello Sanzio da Urbino) which is part of the four Raphael Rooms (Stanze di Raffaello) in the Vatican’s Apostolic Palace. Raphael’s Rooms are the Sala di Costantino (Hall of Constantine), the Stanza di Eliodoro (Room of Heliodorus), the Stanza della Segnatura (Room of the Signatura) and the Stanza dell’ Incendio del Borgo (The Room of the Fire in the Borgo).

The first room Raphael started was the Stanza della Segnatura, and “The School of Athens” was the third wall completed. Depicting Philosophy, “The School of Athens” is one of Raphael’s masterpiece. Raphael was not specific on the identity of the figures he portrayed and left many insisting he painted the likenesses of some of his contemporaries.  The philosophers (above) include Plato or Leonardo da Vinci, Aristotle or Giuliano da Sangallo in the center. Sprawled on the steps, the figure depicts Diogenes of Sinope or Socrates. While the character leaning against the cube is perhaps Heraclitus or Michelangelo.

I have stood before this fresco several times and contemplated many ideas. I read and research and digested opinions, theories, and speculations. Pratchett is correct, examining how you think gives you a conviction that influences everything you do. I notice the certainty of my thoughts appearing unbidden in my work.

What have you analyzed and how has it affected your writing?


Keep on writing.

Jo Hawk The Writer

5 thoughts on “Nurturing Reasoning – Daily Quote

  1. I see the likeness between Plato and da Vinci; the others I don’t know well enough to say (guess). It must be something special to be in the room, as you’ve been. I figure everyone and everything is biased, which affirms what Pratchett is asserting, that our own thoughts form convictions for our writing. I think mine are rather basic: truth over falsehood, good versus evil, writing as an interactive process (that doesn’t happen writing is received and with which is engaged–my students never liked the sharing part). Hope in the world, while knowing there are horrors here as well. Too many convictions, maybe. If it’s one conviction, I guess it’s about the truth, maybe authenticity. (Truth as substance, authenticity as style.) I know nothing exclusively about Truth (Platonic or otherwise), and I don’t claim to have a special bond with what is true. I simply think that we should strive to write the truth, that people want to hear it and tussle with it.

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    • You raise many good questions here, Christopher. I am of the opinion that truth can be colored by a person’s past which frames the perspective through which they see the world. Seen in that light, truth can vary between individuals. There is where I believe writing, conversations (with ourselves and others) and extensive reading can alter the flavor of the truth we hold. It is a huge responsibility and it requires we are honest, open and willing to consider alternate truths. Writing creates multiple levels of conversation (inquiry). First is the dialog the author explores as they write, research, and form options, that are synthesized in the written word. More conversations occur as readers interact and react to the presentation. Yes, tussle is a good word for the process.


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