|"The real cycle you are working on is the cycle called yourself."|
I am re-reading Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance (ZAMM) with my friend Julie. Maybe you know the storyline: Basically, the author, Robert M. Pirsig, serves as narrator of the tale. He embarks on a 17-day motorcycle ride with his 11-year old son. They are joined for part of the journey by a husband and wife riding a second motorcycle. Traveling from Minneapolis to San Francisco, the author explains his personal philosophy in a series of talks. Educating his friends and training his son enables the narrator to delve more deeply into self-awareness and finally grapple with his personal issues to find peace.
The book was published in 1974 and has sold over 5 million copies worldwide. ZAMM is based on Pirsig's actual 8-24 July 1968 ride. An excellent summary of ZAMM is HERE. More about Pirsig's philosophy, the Metaphysics of Quality, is HERE.
My idea is this: gather a dozen adventurous, motorcycle-riding philosophy students and re-enact this ride. We would travel over the same course, stopping for food and rest in the same places Pirsig wrote about, and discuss his philosophical concepts every night around a different campfire. How awesome would that be?
"The way to solve the conflict between human values and technological needs is not to run away from technology. That's impossible. The way to resolve the conflict is to break down the barrier of dualistic thought that prevent a real understanding of what technology is - not an exploitation of nature, but a fusion of nature and the human spirit into a new kind of creation that transcends both" p. 261
Here is a place where I disagree with Pirsig:
"[...] the laws of science contain no matter and have no energy either and therefore do not exist except in people's mind." p. 2.2 + 2 = 4. That is true regardless of whether people invent math.
Who's with me?