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I tracked this entry back from David Bindel's blog.

May I comment on the subjects of this section? I have known David Bindel for a long time, and was once a student of Sandy Mack. Both are scholars, but in different modes. David is the Confucian chuen-tzu--the perfect gentleman. He is contemplative and polite, self-effacing and unassuming to the point of asceticism, and possessed of a strong and playful curiosity. Sandy is the man of the Renaissance. He is a scholar of Shakespeare, Socrates without cynicism, and perpetually surrounded by the aura of Comedy. Neither are possessed of the common sins of scholars: pedantry, equivocation, or aloofness. They are both inspirational and genuine people.

A conversation with David or Sandy regularly produces the sensation of "clearly I need to learn more about X". With David, it stems from the playful curiosity I have described. Talking to him produces an awareness of whole new problems to be pondered and phenomena to be studied. Sandy's fondness for humanity, both generally and specifically, is infectious. Sandy can make the act of drinking coffee alone in a public place an act of communion with humanity at large.

Sandy is very fond of David, a fact made the more meaningful in that the two were not, as far as I know, connected in the usual campus ties at Maryland. That he recognized the profound and radiating virtue of David should, in retrospect, be no surprise. Nor should we be surprised that David, of all of the Honors Listserv subscribers, should recognize the treasure of the Sermons.

-- anonymous 2008-07-25 22:17 UTC

(correlates: Comments on BitsOfConsciousness, ReflectiveStudents, TheRunner, ...)