The Greeks, in a way of life in which great perils and upheavals were always present, sought in knowledge and reflection a kind of security and ultimate refuge. We, in an incomparably more secure condition, have transferred this perilousness into knowledge and reflection, and calm ourselves down with our way of life.– Nietzsche
The history of curiosity testifies to society’s strong influence in determining whether neophilia is a virtue or a vice. Even the philosophical Greeks and Romans were wary of inquiring too deeply into the way things are. Christianity only intensified this wariness…Like individual rights, the concept of curiosity as a laudable urge is an innovation from the Age of Reason.
The wild beasts that lurk in the shadows of life in the developed world have morphed and become insubstantial; we’ve banished lions, wolves and dragons, only to fall prey to depression, angst and ennui as our passion for exploration became more interiorized.