December 16, 2012

Gardens of the mind

This charming video is part of a series that was produced for PBS Digital Studios by Symphony of Science's John D. Boswell. Other videos feature Julia Child, Reading Rainbow's Levar Burton, and Bob Ross. They're all worth checking out but I find this one to be the most amusing of the bunch, probably because it falls into a long tradition that treats the mind as a garden, a place of cultivation and possibility. Of course, "The Garden" by the seventeenth century English parliamentarian Andrew Marvell draws this out in more ambiguous terms.
Meanwhile the mind, from pleasure less,
Withdraws into its happiness :
The mind, that ocean where each kind
Does straight its own resemblance find ;
Yet it creates, transcending these,
Far other worlds, and other seas ;
Annihilating all that's made
To a green thought in a green shade. 
See "The Garden" in full.

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