Sunday, January 03, 2016

Eunoia - its Greek to me

I'm not sure why the Ministry of Education chose the word "Eunoia" for the name of the name college.

According to

eunoia (yoo-NOH-ee-ah) — It comes from a Greek word meaning "well mind" or "beautiful thinking." It is also a rarely used medical term referring to a state of normal mental health. In rhetoric, eunoia is the goodwill a speaker cultivates between himself and his audience, a condition of receptivity. In book eight of Nicomachean Ethics, Aristotle uses the term to refer to the kind and benevolent feelings of goodwill a spouse has which form the basis for the ethical foundation of human life (from Wikipedia). 
This word is the shortest world in the english language that contains all 5 vowels. It means beautiful thinking, or as a medical term it means a healthy mind. I first found it in Aristotle's Nichomechean Ethics in book 8. Nichomechean ethics was written as a guide to Aristotle's son as to how to achieve a happy life, the good life. Book 8 focusses on friendship and eunoia is one of the bases needed for a trusting friendship between husband and wife. I think it's a beautiful sounding word, with a beautiful meaning and story.

Frankly they might as well have chosen Oxford, Cambridge Or Harvard. I suspect the Singaporean parents would have been delighted by those three other choices.

I'm still not sure why a Greek name was chosen - its not as if the govt appreciates the finer points of ancient Greek life - like debate or democracy very much.

I think a better choice would have been "Trinity" - a name that some of the school kids were advocating. That seemed more fitting since three schools were joining together for this effort.

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