Tuesday, April 30, 2019
Monday, April 29, 2019
Friday, April 26, 2019
Thursday, April 25, 2019
Wednesday, April 24, 2019
Tuesday, April 23, 2019
And we are the poorer for it. We cast aside thousands of years of aggregate experience as recorded, however imperfectly and stumblingly, in books, scrolls, or tablets for the sake of our tiny little microsecond of experience. And then we wonder why things go awry? Fools we are! Why reinvent the wheel all the time; we might just as well be illiterate. Ah, but we are! We may know how to read, but we haven't a clue on what to read or how to read well. We skim and call it reading. We rarely actually read, but when we do, we call it "close reading" or "deep reading" so that people will think some amazing thing is happening. Our predecessors would laugh at us. Hopefully, if we have successors (which is looking less and less likely with each rise in temperature), they too will laugh at us. Heaven knows we deserve it!
Monday, April 22, 2019
The person who loaned me this book always has a pencil behind his ear. Me, I always have a pen attached to the collar of my t-shirt—yes, always.
Friday, April 19, 2019
Thursday, April 18, 2019
Wednesday, April 17, 2019
Tuesday, April 16, 2019
So, given that I ride (indoors in the winter) three times a week and walk three to six plus miles a day with a resting heart rate of about 45 (national average for my age is 72), they say my fitness age is:
Friday, April 12, 2019
That's the final excerpt from this book. I hope you enjoyed it. Personally, I think it is a vast improvement over the (already very good) previous edition. Monday we start an older book that a friend loaned me about two years back that I finally got around to reading recently. I think you'll enjoy it. It's a bit of a change of pace: George Steiner, No Passion Spent. It's a collection of his essays on literary criticism and other such things.
Thursday, April 11, 2019
Wednesday, April 10, 2019
Tuesday, April 09, 2019
The minds of the gods were not easily penetrated.—Ancient Near Eastern Thought and the Old Testament, 2nd ed., page 287<idle musing>
If you really want to get back to "pure" paganism, you need to drop those silly Christian ideas about justice. If you've been following this series at all, you have seen how the gods can be very capricious—and you certainly don't want to disagree with them! Unless of course you want to end up like Odysseus and wander for 10 years, lost at sea. Or, like Gilgamesh and Enkidu, fighting the bull of heaven. They won, but I doubt you would! And Enkidu ended up dying for their crimes.
No, pure paganism isn't bothered by the stupid, petty things that Christianity is. Power is what's important and of course using that power! And, of course staying on the good side of the gods! And, as the myths and history both show, that's a tough one. Search the stars, search the entrails, watch the flight of birds, watch for strange portents. our out libations before drinking or eating. Keep you personal god happy! And watch out for the other person who might just have a more powerful personal god than you do!
Me, I'll stick to Christianity. I might not comprehend all that God is doing, but I know he isn't capricious and his love conquers all evil—even the evil inside me!
Monday, April 08, 2019
Pretty stark contrast to Micah 6:8: "He has shown you, O human, what is good. And what does LORD require of you, but to do justly, to love mercy, and to walk humbly with your god." But, it would seem that many who even bother to think about a god and what that god might require of them haven't moved beyond the do ut des (I give in order that you give) principle. In other words, I can do whatever ethically, but if I tick the correct boxes by giving money to the right things, or saying the correct things, nothing bad can happen to me and the god(s) will be fine with me.
I think we see that behavior among some christians, whether on the right or left, who will accept the shortcomings (sins isn't too strong a word here) of their favored candidate—as long as they say the correct things and do certain ritual things that fulfill whatever unwritten or written laws govern the subcommunity to which they belong. Or at least that's the only way I can figure that a certain occupant of a white house in Washington, DC, can continue to be morally corrupt in every imaginable way and still maintain a support base among a large group of christians.
Friday, April 05, 2019
Thursday, April 04, 2019
In passive deductive divination, then, the semiotic and hermeneutical principles mirror what we found for extispicy, and they provide the most likely explanation for why these divinatory practices were forbidden in lsrael. Yahweh could speak (inspired divination), he could choose (provoked simple binary deductive divination), but he did not ”write" his messages in the entrails of animals or in the movement of the heavenly bodies (provoked nonbinary or complex binary deductive divination, nonprovoked deductive divination). Israel believed that they could gain information about divine activity just as their ancient Near Eastern compatriots did, but the list of divinatory means they acknowledged semiotically/hermeneutically acceptable was much more limited.—Ancient Near Eastern Thought and the Old Testament, 2nd ed., page 249