Robert Maynard Pirsig2019-09-30 (6 September 1928 – 24 April 2017) was an American philosopher and novelist, most famous for his novel Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance in which he proposed what has become known as his Metaphysics of Quality (MoQ).
Art is anything you can do well. Anything you can do with Quality.
What I mean (and everybody else means) by the word ‘quality’ cannot be broken down into subjects and predicates. This is not because Quality is so mysterious but because Quality is so simple, immediate and direct.
What keeps the world from reverting to the Neandertal with each generation is the continuing, ongoing mythos… the huge body of common knowledge that unites our minds as cells are united in the body of man…
Religion isn’t invented by man. Men are invented by religion.
My personal feeling is that this is how any further improvement of the world will be done: by individuals making Quality decisions and that’s all.
We do need a return to individual integrity, self-reliance and old-fashioned gumption. We really do.
Quality! Virtue! Dharma! That is what the Sophists were teaching! Not ethical relativism. Not pristine “virtue.” But aretê. Excellence. Dharma!
The hero of the Odyssey is a great fighter, a wily schemer, a ready speaker, a man of stout heart and broad wisdom who knows that he must endure without too much complaining what the gods send…
The Good was not a form of reality. It was reality itself, ever changing, ultimately unknowable in any kind of fixed, rigid way.
The place to improve the world is first in one’s own heart and head and hands, and then work outward from there.
If you don’t like our present social system or intellectual system the best thing you can do with either cops or psychiatrists is stay out of their way. You leave them till last.
The most moral activity of all is the creation of space for life to move around.
Quality is not something you believe in, Quality is something you experience.