Greetings, my absent friend! I experienced a stunning realization that I must share with you. If an academic has no window in their office, one that leads to the outside world, then their life is meaningless and their work must be dismissed. If, however, they do have sight to the outside world, even a vision that reveals only some portion of sky because of the blades of grass, soil and worms smashed up against it, then what they do is an exercise of universal truth. Only then does their life have meaning.
It has taken a lifetime of study to recognize this rather small, petty, uniform truth. I thank my colleagues for their input.