Sunday, July 26, 2015

Libraries keep minds in the game

A mind can be lost without its owner's death. A mind that no longer questions only fulfills the rudimentary aspects of its function. A mind without wonder is a mere engine, a walking parasympathetic nervous system, seeing without observing, reacting without thinking, a forgotten ghost in a passive machine.

The mind that asks and experiments and evaluates will die one day, but will provide a richer life for its owner. The mind that does nothing but rest inside the brain doesn't sidestep the puddle. It's sitting in it.

. . . . At its loftiest, a library's goal is to keep as many minds as possible in the game, past and present, playful and in play.
Josh Hanagarne, The World's Strongest Librarian: A Memoir of Tourette's, Faith, Strength, and the Power of Family (New York: Gotham Books, 2013), pp. 208-09

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