Eat A Peach

To steal a phrase from Academe, “The value of a liberal arts education, and the purpose of college, is to teach students to think, to link, and to create”. Already, in this first semester, two professors have made reference to Bloom’s Taxonomy, a subject that this student had never before encountered.

In a nutshell, or “precis” as Professor P******* says, Bloom developed his hierarchy of thinking in the 1950s “as a means of expressing qualitatively different kinds of thinking”. The levels are:

  1. Knowledge
  2. Comprehension
  3. Application
  4. Analysis
  5. Synthesis
  6. Evaluation

Well, I think we are moving up the ladder, so to speak.

Recently, our English class has been reading poetry (did you notice, dear reader?); one of our readings was T.S. Eliot’s “The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock“. Among other elements, the poem contains references to earlier works of literature and art. In doing the “google” part of my homework, I learned that The Allman Brothers album “Eat A Peach” had been inspired by a line in the Eliot poem: “Do I dare eat a peach?”. Fair enough, the world of music shares the universe with the world of literature and art, and it’s nice to know that my favorite Georgia cracker had some book learning.

Last night, in reading “The Legend of MiaoShen” for my Religion class, I came across a passage where the Buddha tells MiaoShen that he will provide her with a “magic peach” for a journey, and that

When you have eaten it, you shall henceforth experience neither hunger nor thirst; old age and infirmity will never assail you, and you shall live for endless ages”.

Well, the light bulb went on for this student. Of course Eliot would have been familiar with Daoism, of course he would have read this famous tale, and of course the theme of eternity found in the “magic peach” would resonate in his poem about time.

So, Duane got it from Eliot, and Eliot got it from Daoism. And now, I get it. I get an example of the linkage of art, literature, and religion across 2,000 years; I get that a famous piece of music (at least for my generation) is inspired by a famous piece of literature, which is inspired by an ancient symbol in Chinese religious thought.

I wonder what else is out there?


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“Life’s hard, son. It’s harder when you’re stupid.” — The Duke.

Education is a companion which no misfortune can depress, no crime can destroy, no enemy can alienate,no despotism can enslave. At home, a friend, abroad, an introduction, in solitude a solace and in society an ornament.It chastens vice, it guides virtue, it gives at once grace and government to genius. Without it, what is man? A splendid slave, a reasoning savage. - Joseph Addison
The term informavore (also spelled informivore) characterizes an organism that consumes information. It is meant to be a description of human behavior in modern information society, in comparison to omnivore, as a description of humans consuming food. George A. Miller [1] coined the term in 1983 as an analogy to how organisms survive by consuming negative entropy (as suggested by Erwin Schrödinger [2]). Miller states, "Just as the body survives by ingesting negative entropy, so the mind survives by ingesting information. In a very general sense, all higher organisms are informavores." - Wikipedia

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