Opinions and Minor Detail

Lucretius, De Rerum Natura 4.811-817

“Yet, still, even in things that are painfully obvious, you can understand,
That if you aren’t really paying attention, then it is almost the same
As if the thing in front of you were removed and far off the whole time.

What’s the surprise, then, if the mind fails to see
Anything except what it actually focuses on?
In turn, then, we form serious opinions based on minor details,
And we lead ourselves into counterfeit delusions.”

et tamen in rebus quoque apertis noscere possis,
si non advertas animum, proinde esse quasi omni
tempore semotum fuerit longeque remotum.
cur igitur mirumst, animus si cetera perdit
praeterquam quibus est in rebus deditus ipse?
deinde adopinamur de signis maxima parvis
ac nos in fraudem induimus frustraminis ipsi.

James Pollock, ” Campfire Lyrics” 1990

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