By: Robert M. Persig
Lila is Robert Persig’s follow-up to one of my all-time favorite books, Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance. While “Zen” enjoyed massive commercial success, Lila didn’t. For years, I falsely assumed this book wasn’t worth the read. Curiosity eventually prevailed and I picked a copy of Lila up last spring to read on a west coast of the USA road trip. Utterly enrapt, I was unable to put the book down, reading the last 100 pages straight on a rainy day at a Burger King in Oregon.
Perhaps an overzealous claim, I found Lila nothing short of revolutionary: a reality-quaking contribution to human understanding that was filtered out by the very cultural immune-system it defines.
Lila explores a variety of insights, but what is most important is Persig’s “Metaphysics of Quality,” this Inorganic vs. Biological vs. Societal vs. Intellectual march toward greater complexity in the universe and the relationship between dynamic and static quality, something I have personally felt, and even been guided by the past few years, but was unable to fully conceptualize until I read this book.
Read it and I doubt you’ll ever see the world the same.