That’s Quotable! with Hericlitus

Who now?

Lately I’ve been listening to a series of philosophy classes from Ligonier Ministries with R. C. Sproul.  The classes are amazing and if you didn’t like philosophy in college, or it didn’t make a lick of sense, you should check out Ligonier’s website HERE to look at this set of lessons.  It’s not necessarily easy to listen to, you need to pay attention and be able to connect all the dots throughout a lesson, but it’s been a good experience for me and I feel that I am learning a lot.

All that to say, today I’m sharing one of the most famous quotes from a little-known philosopher by the name of Hericlitus.  Very little is known about him except the ideas he expressed as holding.  He claimed the universe was a ordered, unified, and coherent.  The philosophy of “Being and Becoming” was also a major portion of his philosophical endeavors and remains influential today.  In fact, this idea of Being (existing in the present) and Becoming (constant change and growth) combine to give us this famous statement:

No one steps in the same river twice.  – Hericlitus

Say what now?  Sounds a little confusing, but here’s the main thought: a river is always a river.  It is being a river.  But it is also becoming a new river.  Rivers are not stagnant, rather they move and breathe.  New water enters and old water exits.  When a man places his foot in the water and then removes it, even for mere milliseconds, the molecules have moved, changed, remixed, etc.  It is, in a philosophical sense, a new river when he again places his foot back into the water.

I hope this wasn’t too far over your head.  At least you can take this little tidbit and impress all your philosophical friends now. 🙂

Happy Tuesday, and go read a book!

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