Sunday, March 15, 2015
Fates Befalling Chinese and Greek Fliers
Daedalus: Of course, do not fly near the sun but also, these wings, do not speak of them to anyone.
Icarus: The knowledge is dangerous?
Daedalus: There was a man in China who made wings of bamboo and paper and flew. He was seen by the emperor. The emperor considered the invention dangerous and had the flier killed.
Icarus: But flying is a beautiful thing.
Daedalus: The flier was killed before other evil men could build machines to fly over the Great Wall and attack.
Daedalus was not imprisoned for building wings. Impetuosity killed his son Icarus instead. But there is a parallel with Ray Bradbury’s Chinese story, The Flying Machine. Daedalus was imprisoned for his knowledge of the Labyrinthe. The Chinese flier lost his head. Beware of inventing something beautiful; leaders may see darkness in its design.