Saturday, June 10, 2017

Day 10: Better Man

I first met Benjamin Franklin in grade school and would you believe that, while his kite-flying-in-a-rainstorm got my attention, it was learning of his inventions that held my interest. I was too young to appreciate his contributions as a Statesman but that he gave us swim fins (attached to the hands, not the feet) made me take notice . Being the proud owner of bifocals (now trifocals) in more recent years keeps me mindful of what happens when a man sits down to think and in turn, makes a contribution that helps many.

On that note, permit me to be clear that Franklin did NOT invent electricity. He developed the lightening rod (among other things). This is like saying that Franklin invented the Gulf Stream--which he only mapped. Review his inventions and see how he harnessed nature. He did not invent nature.

Given the course of the series so far this month, I am revisiting Franklin's Autobiography paying careful attention to his exploration of virtue and moral perfection, noting how a big man from a little town (1706 Boston was still the Massachusetts Bay Colony) could admit his shortcomings and learn from them to be a better man.


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