18 June 2020

The Inner Impulse by Pedro

The Inner Impulse by Pedro

As far as I remember our next topic is “The inner impulse”


I don’t know really what it is. Nor think that anyone suspects what nature it may have. But I’m sure that those who felt it one day, or several times, will be able to talk about it in our next tertulia.



I called it the other day the inner Elan. And I thought the origin of this strange word would be Greek. But thanks to Google translator now I know it comes from Azerí the language of Azerbaijan; a branch of Turkish. Meaning:  vivacity.


Today Elan is used in French as a French word, meaning impulse. And in English it means also vivacity, but also energy, style and enthusiasm. Not bad, since enthusiasm is the state of the soul of the one who is in God. (En Theos Siasmos).


Let’s put aside the Google translator or I’ll get crazy.


For me Elan was always the Lotus Elan, a wonderful car design drawn by an English man Ron Hickman. Or so I thought. But wrong once again. He was from Greytown, South Africa. A surprise!


With the Elan he became famous, but with his other design, the Black and Decker Workmate, he also became rich. This is also interesting.


I invite you all to take a look at the first series Lotus Elan. A beauty. But also a technical jewel with its backbone structure, and its motor/ transmission layout. 30 years later copied by Mazda. Integrally. Not to forget Mr. Colin Chapman, soul of Lotus.


This brings us back to Philosophy. Because we are here dealing with the inner impulse, because I was thinking of the mystery of some persons: i.e. Richard Branson,  Jeff Bezos, Elon Musk, Mark Shuttleworth, Christiaan Barnard and the mentioned Ron Hickman.


I’m sure that living in a certain place on the planet influences people more than the stars which are too far away. Some say it’s the climate. I rather think of the latitude and the local cultural “climate”.


Branson is a Londoner, and for the sake of our deep reasoning he founded some 360 companies. Something not very usual and starting at the age of 16.


Bezos was able to cover the world with his shop, closing or disturbing all the others. Not bad as a start. Bad in other ways.


Today Bezos, Musk and Shuttleworth are urged to go to the space, taking people there, a place with a terrible climate for holidays. This is what they sell. Strange inner impulse!


Barnard decided to swap people’s hearts, something perhaps practical, but at first sight it looked bizarre, to say the least. Today it has become common and “easy” operation. But being the first is tremendous merit!


Which lets me in the end with my all time favorite, Mr. Ron Hickman. Today I’ve discovered he was from South Africa.


In my scientific quest I’ve tried to annotate the latitudes of some cities which have been cradle of great innovators. And so in the north we have Athens at 37ºN , Rome at 41ºN, Madrid at 40ºN, Malaga at 36ºN. Upside down we have Cape Town at 33ºS, Johannesburg at 26ºS, Pretoria at 25ºS, Welkom 27ºS (Shuttleworth), and Greytown 29ºS (Hickman). Symmetrical.


Which may not demonstrate anything scientifically, but looks splendid. Because North and South at the same latitude produce great minds and wine.  Not to forget Mr. Nelson Mandela, a kind of leader we need now way up north.


For Henry Bergson this mystery of the inner impulse was an appealing theme. He spoke of the Elan vital. Describing it as an impulse without preconceived aim nor plan, cause of the wonderful effects of nature.  It takes a French to think so elegant!


Someone, as I said who has felt it once knows that with it you can do something. Without it, hardly anything happens.


Be it love, 5 children, a company, or 360 companies, a successful business or a charitable foundation covering the world.


At first we hardly know why we follow this impulse nor why we have it. Maybe enthusiasm as the Greeks considered it, is the reason. And without reason?


Here I leave it to you!


Thank you for your attention





















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