The Dumbbell's Dictionary HTML version
The Ideal, n. As with most things in life, we should always remember that the ideal and
the real are, most often, two separate things. Doing so would avoid much disenchantment
Idealism, n. Philosophical system not to be confused with the idea of the ideal. The
school was concerned with ideas, not ideals. That said, what has gone wrong with our
culture over the past half century that causes so many of us to excuse excesses of the left
as mere idealism? (Remember, ideas, not ideals.) The implication follows, of course, that
a conservative idealist is a contradiction in terms.
If, conj. Most important word in the English language. Thus, if the frog wasn’t built so
low to the ground, he wouldn’t bump his butt every time he hopped. See Kipling’s
immortal poem. Thus: „If you can make a pile of your winnings, and risk it on one turn of
pitch and toss, and lose, then smile at your beginnings, and never breathe a word about
If it be known, v. The universe does not comport with our strivings. It is as it is,
somewhat like galaxies like grains of sand. That is, we should ever be humble when
considering the immensity of the cosmos. According to the latest discoveries of the
Hubble Telescope, our knowable universe is approximately twelve light years in any
direction, which makes it approximately twenty five light years in diameter. Consider,
therefore, the immensity, and the possibilities.
Idyllic, adj. Do we ever encounter it? If so, how long does it last?
Ignorance, n. Is it truly bliss? Maybe for a while, but a short while. And does it really
have to be perpetuated from generation to generation?
Ignorant People, n. Don’t let yourself be goaded into an argument with one of them. You
only lower yourself by doing so. A wise man once said that arguing with the ignorant is
somewhat similar to swapping spit with a jackass.
Ilk, n. A sick elk.
Imagination, n. It is indeed a wonderful aspect/capability of the human mind. That said, it
becomes overblown with the bromide that whatever man can imagine, he will someday
do. I think not. Consider the abrogation of the laws of physics that would have to be
invoked in order for a living organism to travel safely beyond a black hole’s event
horizon and its accompanying point of singularity. If such an organism were to make the
trip, it seems to me that a point of ultimate thinness, somewhat along the lines of a
spaghetti strap of an evening gown, would envelop it.
Immaculate Conception, n. I can’t help wondering why, at just about the time in the
1860’s of the unification of Italy, with the resultant loss, to the Papacy, of the Papal
States, the decision was made to portray Mary as having been conceived blameless for
Immanentize, v. What Eric Voegelin, one of the twentieth century’s greatest political
philosophers, advises us not to attempt with the eschaton.
Immortality, n. Who in his right mind would want to live forever? Human nature tells us
that whatever is in an exhaustible supply becomes worth less and less as the years
progress. This is, of course, not to denigrate Robert Heinlein’s wonderful „Time Enough