Rating this book out of five stars does not seem appropriate somehow. It is a thought provoking book, a book designed to make you think, question, and think again. I got bogged down a bit in the endless discussion of Quality, the “high country of the mind,” and the discussions of Plato and Aristotle. I’ve never liked classical philosophy much.
I thought there were some excellent points about education, the Church of Reason, and the romantic and classical modes of understanding. I certainly fall under the heading of “romantic,” but I make an effort to appreciate the classical. Pirsig’s meditations on these ideas resonated with my own thoughts, and articulated them far better. I’m glad I read this book, though it’s hard to say I “liked” it.
I recommend this book to readers with patience, an appreciation for detail, and a willingness to read with the entire mind. I will probably read it again someday, this time with a pen, and annotate in the margins. It’s the kind of book that invites discussion with the text.
I finished this book today and am still processing it. Nothing makes me appreciate education more than books like this. I didn’t always enjoy college, but it is heartening to know that it gave me the tools to read and appreciate books that I might have otherwise given up on. It is likewise heartening to know that I can, with a little discipline and determination, continue my education simply by reading.