This semester, I am in good company --- I have been studying Darwin and Marx closely, one of the most rewarding and stimulating things to do.
A giant is a giant. After having read Darwin's and Marx's original works, all other secondary materials seem so pale and boring. There's nothing like the direct transmission through the words of the masters. If you press your ear hard enough against their monumental books, you can hear the heart beat.
Studying these two bearded men is especially important for my future direction. Darwin explores the Logic of Nature; Marx explores the Logic of Capital. Both men's works are about life and death, although in very different context. (Engels said at Marx's funeral, "Just as Darwin discovered the law of evolution in human nature, so Marx discovered the law of evolution in human history.")
My role is to create harmony between the Logic of Nature and the Logic of Capital. This, too, is a task of life and death.
Studying Darwin and Marx makes me realize how much work I still need to do. Both men hit upon their revolutionary ideas around the age of thirty. But it took each of them another 20 years of hard work to produce the "Origin of Species" and "Das Kapital". The intensity of their focus and intellectual labor is mind-boggling. Their passion and devotion are very touching and inspiring. With them in mind, I shall never be lonely.