The Devil’s Details

Might be the latest working title of my writing-project-in-progress?

The devil is in the detail they say. Presumably as a reminder that the difficult part of any project remains undone – the risks remain high – until all details are properly addressed. Many a slip ‘twixt … failure is a failure to address detail. Look after the pennies … Piss-poor planning … seems to be the received wisdom of that meme?

The ancient sage that first voiced the thought almost certainly did not intend that understanding. They were surely thinking along the same lines as the romantics – we murder to dissect? Reductionism kills the creative whole.

The devil is in the detail, because details kill.

(What is missing in this conception are relevance and appropriateness.)

6 thoughts on “The Devil’s Details”

  1. Very interesting title – it could almost sound like a cult-classic over time. Seductive and multi-layered, and surprising for the reader with its deeper meaning, most likely.

    The devil is often known as (and literally means) the Divider and the Scatterer, but the Detail-Orienter – to distract and deceive.. interesting.

  2. Interesting that etymology of the word devil – as divider and scatterer.
    Supporting the thought that analysis and reductionism are … evil 🙂

  3. I’m not sure if these thoughts pertain to The Matter with Things indirectly, but in case they do, I notice that on Jenny Connected’s “Iain McGilchrists’s new book, The Matter with Things–further information,” one commenter (Al de Baran) said “The whole thing sounds very Manichean”. Jenny sought to correct him.

  4. Jenny (Mackness) is part of “Channel McGilchrist” – she seems to have written a lot of posts around her reading of his two books.
    I don’t see the specific post / comment you’re referring to, but I shall browse her postings.

    I should add that no, this post wasn’t particularly about McGilchrist – but again his model does seem to cut right through everything these days.

    AND – even more so from a Pirsig perspective, I notice that commenter is “Aldebaran” – in ZMM Pirsig’s character is Phaedrus and in Lila his nemesis is Rigel. A theme of brightly shining stars?

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