Tuesday, September 11, 2018


Leisure, the Basis of Culture

Lin Yutang (1895-1976), The Importance of Living (1937; rpt. New York: Reynal & Hitchcock, 1938), p. 150:
Culture, as I understand it, is essentially a product of leisure. The art of culture is therefore essentially the art of loafing. From the Chinese point of view, the man who is wisely idle is the most cultured man. For there seems to be a philosophic contradiction between being busy and being wise. Those who are wise won't be busy, and those who are too busy can't be wise. The wisest man therefore is he who loafs most gracefully.

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