“I do not teach a definite Philosophy—I have no cocked and primed system—but I outline, suggest, hint—tell what I see—then each may make up the rest for himself. He who goes to my book expecting a cocked and primed philosophy, will depart utterly disappointed—and deserves to! I find anyhow that a great many of my readers credit my writings with things that do not attach to the writings themselves but to the persons that read them—things they supply, bring with them.
Epictetus says: “Do not let yourself be wrapt by phantasms”—and we must not: that is very profound: it often comes back to me.
Epictetus is the one of all my old cronies who has lasted to this day without cutting a diminished figure in my perspective. He belongs with the best—the best of the great teachers—is a universe in himself. He sets me free in a flood of light—of life, of vista.
My contention is for the whole man—the whole corpus not one member—not a leg, an arm, a belly alone, but the entire corpus, nothing left out of the account. I know it will be argued that the present is the time of specialization, but that don’t answer it.”
—Walt Whitman from “Walt Whitman Speaks”
There is a reason the elite of Rome sat at the feet of a crippled ex-slave to learn what a human being looks like.
He saw gold and I see it in Walt and I see it in others and I see it in myself and I love it.