„Diogenes … refuses to be taken in by complacent popular belief that we already know human goodness from our daily experience, or by confident professorial claims that we can capture the mystery of our humanity in ­definitions.“

—  Leon R. Kass, Context: Diogenes … refuses to be taken in by complacent popular belief that we already know human goodness from our daily experience, or by confident professorial claims that we can capture the mystery of our humanity in ­definitions. But mocking or not, and perhaps speaking better than he knew, Diogenes gave elegantly simple expression to the humanist quest for self-knowledge: I seek the human being — my human being, your human being, our humanity. In fact, the embellished version of Diogenes' question comes to the same thing: To seek an honest man is, at once, to seek a human being worthy of the name, an honest-to-goodness exemplar of the idea of humanity, a truthful and truth-speaking embodiment of the animal having the power of articulate speech.
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Leon R. Kass20
American academic 1939
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