Wednesday, October 18, 2006

The Soul Pathology of the Beast With Red Cheeks

One of the things that a conservative realizes that a liberal doesn’t is that human beings are the problem. And this is why the classical liberalism embodied in the conservative intellectual movement will always be a tougher sell than leftism, because people naturally don’t want to believe that they are the problem, but that there is some simplistic political solution that will cure the disease of man.

I realize that characterization sounds harsh, but there is a sense in which you can think of human beings as a weird disease of the biosphere. However, you can also think of life as a sort of runaway cancer on the body of matter, and existence itself as a blight on the body of nothingness. After all, if there were no existence, there would be no problems either. To exist is to have a problem, if only because existence implies separation from the Source of our being. And that’s a big problem--a problem that it is the purpose of religion to redress.

The local manifestations of life and mind are relatively recent phenomena in the cosmos. The cosmos is at least 13.7 billion years old, meaning that it did just fine, thank you, for about 10 billion years without any creepy living things slithering about and mucking things up. And after that, the cosmos went another 3.84 billion years or so without any of these animals getting a big head and thinking that they knew better than the cosmos that had bearthed them. Although modern human beings have been genetically complete for as long as 200,000 years, we really don’t see any evidence of what we call humanness until its sudden emergence about 40,000 years ago, for example, in the beautiful and fully realized cave paintings at Alta Mira and Lascaux.

As I pointed out in One Cosmos, once you have these new modes of locally concentrated Life and Mind, you also have the entirely new existential category of pathology. In other words, prior to the emergence of life 3.85 billion years ago, there were literally no problems in the universe. Nothing could go wrong because nothing had to go right. But every biological entity is composed of various functions that must achieve their end in order for the organism to survive. In a human being, there are thousands of large- and small-scale things that have to go right in order for us to be free of pathology. Our lungs must exchange oxygen and carbon dioxide with the environment; our heart must circulate blood; our pancreas must produce insulin (d’oh!), etc. All of these things have to go right for life to continue. Anything that interferes with the ability of an organ to accomplish its end is called “pathology.”

But this leads to an interesting question, for what is the proper end of human consciousness? Because of we don’t know what consciousness is for, we can’t very well say that this or that individual is pathological, can we?

Now, if you adopt a strictly Darwinian, materialistic view, then the answer to this question is obvious: a healthy person is simply one who survives, because that is the whole point of natural selection. Thus, Stalin was more healthy than the 20 to 40 million people he murdered, just as Hitler was clearly more healthy than the 6 million Jews he slaughtered. Survival of the fittest is the final arbiter in nature. You may think that I am being a bit polemical, but this was the philosophy of one of the forerunners of postmodernity, Nietzsche, who believed that the whole idea of “God” was a pathological meme that simply protected the weak and infirm from the harsh judgment of nature.

No matter who you are, you will have something inside of you that makes a judgment between psychological health and pathology. A lay person generally does not make their criteria explicit, but clearly, you cannot say what is pathological unless you have some idea of what a human being is for, and what the pathology is preventing it from accomplishing.

For example, without ever deeply considering the reason why, most people would say that a pedophile is a sick individual. But why, really? If you are a materialist, you would have to say that the sex drive has a purpose, and it is clearly a deviation from that purpose to direct it towards children. But what is the actual purpose of the sex drive? Is it only to reproduce? If that is the case, then any non-reproductive sex would have to be deemed equally pathological, because reproduction is the only concern of natural selection. If we draw our lessons from nature, then the strongest man with the most wives and children would be the healthiest one, even if he had a few child brides in the harem.

But back to our original question: what is a human being actually for? Is there a reason for our existence? If you are any kind of materialist or secularist, you must be intellectually honest and affirm that there is no such reason aside from those that we simply make up. And this is precisely what the secular left does. The doctrines of “diversity,” multiculturalism and moral relativism all insist that there is no proper way for a human being to “be,” and that any judgment we make about other people and cultures is not only wrong, but probably racist as well.

Completely lost on the postmodern left is the irony that this itself is a very strong statement about the ultimate purpose of human beings, which is to not make judgments unless it is to harshly judge those who judge. This is what we call a sophisticated “postmodern” belief, which is to say that it is a limb on the tree of western civilization that its inhabitants have cut from the trunk, so that they mysteriously hang suspended in thin, irony-poor acadanemic air with no visible means of philosophical support. It makes no sense at all--certainly less sense than the religious traditions they deride and dismiss--but that’s an intellectual for you. They always believe that their abstractions are more real than reality, and that reality itself is a diseased deviation from their beautiful ideas. It’s one of the reasons they detest liberty, because they cannot accept the idea that the robust “bottom up” order produced by chaotic liberty surpasses their own beautiful ideas of how the good society should be imposed by leftist elites from on high.

I do not derive my ideas of human health and pathology from nature. Nor do I derive them from culture. Rather, I do so from religious tradition, which I believe speaks to Universal Man--not to such and such a man, but to man as such--to all men at all times and in all cultures, without exception. The man who fails to achieve these ends is more or less sick in the soul, psyche or brain, while the culture that fails to produce these kinds of men is a sick society.

Man was created in the image of God, so he therefore has an uncreated intellect that may know truth, and know it absolutely. He may distinguish between the Real and the unreal, between the transient and the eternal, and between principles and their manifestation. No mere animal can do any of these things, nor can any materialist philosophy account for them in a manner that is not logically self-refuting.

Man has an uncreated conscience that may distinguish between objective good and evil, and do so reliably. This is not to say that I do not believe in situational ethics. Rather, it is to say that in each situation there is an objectively good choice, even if we must struggle to discern it.

And man has an aesthetic eye that may distinguish between beauty and ugliness, and therefore pursue degrees of material perfection that are measured in light of the Absolute. Aesthetic perfection does exist, and cannot surpass itself. Postmodern art makes a virtue of its failure to even acknowledge these transcendent degrees of perfection.

In short, man is man because he may know the True, the Good and the Beautiful, and act upon that knowledge with a will that is free. Any man who does not achieve these ends is a sick man, and any culture that does not produce such men is a sick society.

Judged by these criteria, academia is by and large a very sick place, at least as it pertains to the humanities (we are naturally excluding those noble and truly liberal universities such as Hillsdale College whose very mission is to preserve the ideals of which we speak). On what elite campus do the professors speak of timeless truth, or objective morality, or of transcendentally real beauty? To the extent that they do, we have no quarrel with them.

Our enemies in the Muslim world are our enemies precisely because they are sick men from sick societies who wish to spread their disease to the rest of the world. But in our own world, approximately half of the population suffers from a soul pathology that prevents them from making judgments on, or even perceiving, the soul pathology of our external enemies. Thus, there are no feminist groups who have rallied behind George Bush, who has liberated more Muslim women than perhaps any other human being in history. Likewise, I know of no leftists who celebrate the achievements of the great liberator Ronald Reagan, who gave millions of victims of a satanic ideology the opportunity to become human again. For if leftists were to acknowledge these achievements, they would no longer be leftists. They would be cured.

71 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Well put. Finding you in the blogosphere (2 weeks ago) was like coming upon a rare gem in a vast quartz mine. I now read you daily. May God Richly Bless You!

10/18/2006 08:50:00 AM  
Blogger Cardozo Bozo said...

"In short, man is man because he may know the True, the Good and the Beautiful, and act upon that knowledge with a will that is free. Any man who does not achieve these ends is a sick man, and any culture that does not produce such men is a sick society."

But what if, in fact, there is no Truth to know, but that Man (as Man) is merely uniquely capable of self-deception? What if there is no Truth, but your free will merely acts upon the delusion of Truth?

I would agree with your opening line several days ago, that false understandings of human nature create disfunctional polical philosophy, but it does not follow that functional philosophies are a reliable signal of accurate understandings of human nature. See also, Ptolemaic astronomy.

To the extent that Judeo-Christian societies are successful (and they are), we merely have evidence of a society that objectively produces good results, perhaps in spite of the beliefs of its inhabitants.

10/18/2006 09:01:00 AM  
Blogger Gagdad Bob said...

If there is no truth to be known, then there is no reason to pay attention to you. But if truth may be known, there is every reason not to pay attention to you.

10/18/2006 09:14:00 AM  
Anonymous Will said...

>>. . . human beings as a weird disease of the biosphere<<

Riffing tangentially - I think it's true that spiritual man, man as he is intended to be, is something of a pathogen with respect to the natural, material earth. It seems a bit counter-intuitive, but spiritually Realized men and women, from St Francis to St Teresa to Krishnamurti, were all physically ill in some way during the entire course of their lives. Makes sense, though - robust, animal health is the hallmark of natural, material organic life, it's a downward pull. The spiritual thrust, however, is upward, away from material nature. It's literally "un-natural", it's "anti-animal health".

This begs the question(s): do we belong someplace else? Did our true selves, our essential selves, originate here? Or - did the earth once have an utterly different nature than the one it has now, one that naturally accommodated our spiritual beings?

>>what is a human being actually for? Is there a reason for our existence?<<

I think once the holy space is cleared for a consciousness to genuinely ask that question, questions would naturally follow on the order of: why is there earth, air, wind, water, sand, mountains? They must serve a purpose for us beyond material topographical equalizing, they must, at very least, *symbolize* something. And why are there *stars*? If the within is reflected in the without, what do stars signify? Or the planets of our solar system, for that matter.

Lotsa stars, lotsa questions.

10/18/2006 09:18:00 AM  
Blogger Gagdad Bob said...

Will--

Excellent. I will soon post on the symbolic nature of reality, a symbolism that answers to our deepest humanness and shows how the cosmos must ultimately be understood from the top down, not the bottom up.

10/18/2006 09:28:00 AM  
Anonymous Joan of Argghh! said...

Bob, I wish I had real time to interact and say thoughtful, sober things in response to all the beauty I find here at OC, but I'm usually at work, and I steal a few moments at lunch to just "be" with the bobbleheads. (That all of you suffer my presence with a good will just encourages me to come back, y'know. I'm just sayin'....)

If a man can be judged by the questions he asks, then Will gets an "excellent" rating. I can answer only one of the many, however:

We have air so we can inflate footballs and um.... and fly kites.

10/18/2006 09:48:00 AM  
Blogger Gagdad Bob said...

Joan--

Not for nothing is Will a 7th Degree Bi-Cosmic Hermeticist and First Deputy in Charge of Doctrinal Enforcement.

10/18/2006 09:55:00 AM  
Blogger J. Peden said...

"But what if, in fact, there is no Truth to know, but that Man (as Man) is merely uniquely capable of self-deception?"
cardozo bozo

cardozo, do yourself a favor, take some Philosophy: you can't even know what self-deception is unless you know what non-self deception is. Otherwise the two states are the same, and have nothing to do with self-deception, but perhaps only to do with a defeatist view of self and of the reality which created it, which we cannot escape. But who'd want to?

You have a free choice here. And no one can do it for you. [Now that's what I call freedom.]

10/18/2006 10:12:00 AM  
Blogger J. Peden said...

I think the cosmos must also be understood from the inside out. One simple question is, why did the cosmos create a being which wants to understand the cosmos? And understand it beyond the mere laws of Physics?

What possible materialistic survivalistic value is there in having this capacity and desire to understand the cosmos beyond laws of practicality?

I say understanding oneself is a necessary way to go. It's also fun.

Somewhat peripherally, it seems to me that if we did not see the cosmos as beautiful, etc., we would not exist.

10/18/2006 10:21:00 AM  
Anonymous Will said...

>>We have air so we can inflate footballs and um.... <<

And because God insists that we have medium conducive to playing imaginary guitar, of course.

10/18/2006 10:28:00 AM  
Blogger Tamara said...

". . . the cosmos must ultimately be understood from the top down, not the bottom up." Right on, as usual! Kabbalists (real ones, not the faux, red-ribbon wearing variety) observed a long time ago, "As Above, So Below."

10/18/2006 10:52:00 AM  
Blogger Van said...

"In short, man is man because he may know the True, the Good and the Beautiful, and act upon that knowledge with a will that is free. Any man who does not achieve these ends is a sick man, and any culture that does not produce such men is a sick society.

Judged by these criteria, academia is by an large a very sick place, at least as it pertains to the humanities."

YES! Excellent post Gagdad!

I can't tell you how good it is to see that said in print! Behind every evil we face you see that assault on the True, the Good and the Beautiful. From every degradation present in the modern world from corrosive humor, to the 'art' of Picasso & the splasher, from Shakespeare to post-modernist bile - symmetry, beauty, civility, Truth and knowledge are attacked because their existence is a direct refutation to that worship of all things Ugly that is the nihilism upheld (there's two words that shouldn't go together!) by the leftists.

Most would try to deny it, particularly those lost in the acadanemic system such as students, but even on a seemingly pedestrian 'innocent' level, look at the variations of Grunge that pass for fashionable appearance - if that isn't stylized ugliness, it certainly isn't an attempt at beauty.

That we affirm that there is in fact Truth, Goodness & Beauty in the Cosmos, that they do exist and we are that which is capable of not only knowing and recognizing the fact, but are also seeking to realize them into our thoughts and deeds; that is a far better thing than they will ever do.

10/18/2006 10:57:00 AM  
Blogger Van said...

gagdad said..."If there is no truth to be known, then there is no reason to pay attention to you. But if truth may be known, there is every reason not to pay attention to you."

Wo! Took the words right out of my fingers!

cardozo bozo, your profile picture is aptly chosen.

10/18/2006 10:59:00 AM  
Blogger Van said...

j.peden said..."One simple question is, why did the cosmos create a being which wants to understand the cosmos? And understand it beyond the mere laws of Physics? ... I say understanding oneself is a necessary way to go. It's also fun."

I don't know for sure of course, but I suspect that Fun isn't something we have a monopoly on.

10/18/2006 11:08:00 AM  
Anonymous lasch 2.0 said...

I have followed this blog from afar with real admiration despite my frequent divergences from its conclusions.

This post prompted me to contribute because I believe there is a near-compatibility of the materialist with the religious perspective. Materialism helps us understand the need humans have to create meaning; it also posits some irreducible aspects of humanness -- such as the universal urge to destruction, as posited by Freud -- that religion sometimes too messiancally tries to control.

I think the value of materialism is in its questioning of all cultural creations -- of the ideological purpose behind them. The horror of the left is that it believed it could change human nature via ideology -- hence Stalin, Hitler, etc. But there are also dangers on the right, where essential aspects of human nature like sexuality and destruction are denied or repressed, leading to things like the Catholic Church's inability to confront its homosexual pedophilic culture.

The danger of materialism indeed is nihilism. But why I still honor Freud is that he was deeply concerned with morality, eros, the work of civilization. He just knew the great price we pay when our work to build a better world doesn't take into consideration the irreducible truths inherent in being human. Materialism indeed may lead to nihilism -- as the evil postmodern left has shown -- but it can also offer the spiritual and decent in our civilization a foundation on which to build institutions that can serve who we are, rather than try to change who we are by denying who we are.

10/18/2006 11:53:00 AM  
Blogger dicentra63 said...

On what elite campus do the professors speak of timeless truth, or objective morality, or of transcendentally real beauty? To the extent that they do, we have no quarrel with them.

It may not be an elite university in the eyes of many, but Brigham Young University (motto: "The glory of God is Intelligence") has not abandoned the search for Truth, Beauty, or any of the other worthy categories. A course called "American Heritage" is required for all students, and it teaches the basic concepts of free-market economies, the Enlightenment and the Constitution, and other traditional American values.

Furthermore, the arts programs continuously produce high-quality, beauty-seeking productions in theater, choir, jazz bands, dance ensembles, motion pictures, animation, and visual arts.

The professors do not promote adolescent hi-jinks (the ones who do get fired--no tenure at BYU) but act as true mentors, guiding the students in their search for Truth in all disciplines. Because at BYU, they do believe that Truth exists and that you need to seek out as much as you possibly can.

Marxism is studied but not believed. Evolution is studied but God is not denied. Science is pursued with great enthusiasm. The Humanities are indeed humane.

I didn't appreciate BYU when I was an undergrad, but after spending 5 years at Cornell as a graduate, I came to see that BYU is an amazing entity for standing up for Truth in an age of postmodernism.

10/18/2006 12:06:00 PM  
Anonymous Joan of Argghh! said...

"but it can also offer the spiritual and decent in our civilization a foundation on which to build institutions that can serve who we are"

Egagdad! Not another human institution bent on serving who I am!!! What a devilish thought! I'm trying pretty hard to be what I'm not, and want a vertical institution that is determined to have me better than I am. Trust me, everyone will benefit from such an arrangement.

And my I-95 co-commuters will be safer, too.

:)

I think what's hard for humanists and sincere materialists to see is that, even at our very best and highest good, we are infinitely below the Best, the only Good, the only Wise. In that sense our efforts have to transcend what we can achieve in any temporal way, else it would be tempting to say, "even my best is pitiful next to the Perfect, so why bother?"

Why? Because, we just know there's an upward tug on our hearts, and someOne's actually pulling for us, wanting us to be...more.

10/18/2006 12:28:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

dicentra63 said "Because at BYU, they do believe that Truth exists and that you need to seek out as much as you possibly can."

Well said, being that the subject of today's lesson is pathology.

NoMo

10/18/2006 12:30:00 PM  
Blogger Cardozo Bozo said...

"If there is no truth to be known, then there is no reason to pay attention to you. But if truth may be known, there is every reason not to pay attention to you."

I would agree with the second statement, but not the first. If there is no truth to be known you're wasting a lot of time on this blog; time that could be spent with your son or in other worthy pursuits. Paying attention to me (or others like me, since I'm not special in my access to wisdom) might lessen the opportunity costs you pay by pursuing a Truth which is not to be found.

Although I present it as a statement (I won't clutter your comments area with long essays), I have reason to believe that the Universe is fundamentally bottom-up to the exclusion of any top-down design or control. There is no 'top-down' nature to understand, because it does not exist. We can pretend it's there, and make up reasons for why it appears to be there, but that doesn't make it real.

10/18/2006 12:31:00 PM  
Anonymous Cousin Dupree said...

Then you are indeed aptly named. Your frank confession of pneuma-blindness is not susceptble to correction. You are dismissed.

10/18/2006 12:43:00 PM  
Blogger Van said...

lasch 2.0 said... "Materialism helps us understand the need humans have to create meaning"

What do you draw that from? It's been my experience that Materialists assert that there IS no meaning.

Materialism means to deny that there is any such thing as Spirit or Soul, that all our actions are all just determined by cause & effect processes alone, sound and fury signyfying nothing.

" it can also offer the spiritual and decent in our civilization a foundation on which to build institutions that can serve who we are, rather than try to change who we are by denying who we are."

What is it that you think Materialism offers us as a picture of our being? What do you suppose Materialism offers as an answer to the question of "who are we"? (which I think is the question a Materialist would ask, rather that "who am I")

Are you maybe confusing a Materialist with that type of Athiest who doesn't believe in a God, but nevertheless does believe in a spirit spontaneously generated with the body & which then dies with it? If so, that is very different from Materialism.

10/18/2006 12:44:00 PM  
Blogger Gagdad Bob said...

Materialism can offer meaning only insofar as matter is understood to be logoistic, in which case science is nothing less than the perpetual unveiling of ever deeper layers of our ineluctably theophanous cosmos.

10/18/2006 12:50:00 PM  
Blogger Van said...

cardozo bozo - if you believed that there was no truth and no meaning, why would you spend anytime playing with a child, or anything else that might require adherence to truths & meaning to play with or teach them 'properly'?

You wouldn't, you'd just go out and amuse yourself as others who 'believe' similarly have done recently, you'd amuse yourself with them, maybe lock yourself up in a schoohouse with them and then shoot them when you became bored.

10/18/2006 01:02:00 PM  
Anonymous Karl Vincent said...

Truth? You can't handle the truth!
As a percentage of the population of Western Civilization, there are less Christians today than 50 years ago, 500 years ago, or 1,000 years. I'm sane, it's the world that's pathological. Is that it?
Bob, you of all people (being a psychologist) know that delusion is unassailable to the host of that delision. You have a touchy-feely approach to truth. One knows Truth becuz they are touched by God's grace. Okay, if that's good enough for you, then run with it; but stop your psuedo-intellectual blather to rationalize what is totally irrational! Love and kisses, Karl

10/18/2006 02:12:00 PM  
Blogger Gagdad Bob said...

Karl--

I have no idea what you're talking about, which is probably an accurate reflection of what you're thinking about, counter-transference being what it is.

10/18/2006 02:20:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I think the pathology of fallen man may have been best described by a guy named Paul (formerly Saul of Tarsus, a Jewish leader who went about harrassing and killing early christian believers -- until he became one):

Warning - This may sting a little -

"The wrath of God is being revealed from heaven against all the godlessness and wickedness of human beings who suppress the truth by their wickedness, since what may be known about God is plain to them, because God has made it plain to them. For since the creation of the world God's invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine nature—have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that people are without excuse.
For although they knew God, they neither glorified him as God nor gave thanks to him, but their thinking became futile and their foolish hearts were darkened. Although they claimed to be wise, they became fools and exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images made to look like mortal human beings and birds and animals and reptiles.
Therefore God gave them over in the sinful desires of their hearts to sexual impurity for the degrading of their bodies with one another. They exchanged the truth about God for a lie, and worshiped and served created things rather than the Creator—who is forever praised. Amen.
Because of this, God gave them over to shameful lusts. Even their women exchanged natural sexual relations for unnatural ones. In the same way the men also abandoned natural relations with women and were inflamed with lust for one another. Men committed shameful acts with other men, and received in themselves the due penalty for their error.
Furthermore, just as they did not think it worthwhile to retain the knowledge of God, so God gave them over to a depraved mind, so that they do what ought not to be done. They have become filled with every kind of wickedness, evil, greed and depravity. They are full of envy, murder, strife, deceit and malice. They are gossips, 30 slanderers, God-haters, insolent, arrogant and boastful; they invent ways of doing evil; they disobey their parents; they have no understanding, no fidelity, no love, no mercy. Although they know God's righteous decree that those who do such things deserve death, they not only continue to do these very things but also approve of those who practice them.

Romans 1:18-32 TNIV

10/18/2006 02:28:00 PM  
Anonymous Will said...

Dicentra, the University of Chicago still stands relatively fast as well.

10/18/2006 02:32:00 PM  
Anonymous Karl Vincent said...

Bob,
Here's what I'm talking---and thinking---about:
(your words)
"I do not derive my ideas of human health and pathology from nature. Nor do I derive them from culture. Rather, I do so from religious tradition, which I believe speaks to Universal Man--not to such and such a man, but to man as such--to all men at all times and in all cultures, without exception. The man who fails to achieve these ends is more or less sick in the soul, psyche or brain, while the culture that fails to produce these kinds of men is a sick society."

10/18/2006 02:49:00 PM  
Anonymous cosanostradamus said...

Will - nice tangent - allow me to veer further off task -

"why is there earth, air, wind, water, sand, mountains?"

Bill Cosby figured out the air answer in 1965: Sound effects! His 'Why Is There Air' album wouldn't have launched his career without them.

"This begs the question(s): do we belong someplace else? Did our true selves, our essential selves, originate here? Or - did the earth once have an utterly different nature than the one it has now, one that naturally accommodated our spiritual beings?"

I've always imagined that the Adam and Eve / creation allegoreality actually happened in outline form in a parallel galaxy just next door and that the "fall" of Lucifer was the catalyst of physical human history, earthly speaking. At any rate (I'm no theologian), Eden certainly sounds unearthly in Genesis, what with a talking snake and tree of life and the Maker walking around in the garden chatting it up and all. Then there's the terrible angels locking the gate behind the hapless A & E as they are booted out to earth. And so here we are...

...and it's no utopia, but not for lack of trying. But at this stage what we have is increasing cacophony across every communication bandwidth, blocking out our ability to hear the still quiet voice of the spirit, or Petey, or whatever your eternal muse calls itself.

Fortunately, someone comes along every now and then to remind us that it's still there. I like how Solomon does it in Ecclesiastes. What always strikes me is how he understood the vanity of the material world, while at the same time thoroughly engrossing himself in it. But what saved him from ultimate despair was his perspective and dependence on the eternal. It's the tuning fork that calls attention upward out of this polluted atmosphere; if you can hear it while you're laying bricks or selling soap, you're probably ok.

To quote Solomon:

He has made everything beautiful in its time. Also He has put eternity in their hearts, except that no one can find out the work that God does from beginning to end. (Ecclesiastes 3:11)

Shouldn't stop us from trying though.

10/18/2006 02:57:00 PM  
Blogger shoprat said...

Genuine belief in God requires something that is totally lacking in the left-wing academics and that is humility. Genuine faith requires that you recognize something far greater than yourself.

In point I remember reading some twenty years ago in The Humanist magazine where Isaac Assimov (noted Atheist) had accepted an award and in his remarks he called humility a false virtue.

The ones most like Nietzche are also the first to condemn his teachings because he merely took Atheism to its logical and inescapable political and social conclusion. It is a conclusion they wish to avoid.

10/18/2006 03:09:00 PM  
Blogger Van said...

bweet! bweet! bweet!

Sun's rising - microscopic traces of epidermal petrification belatedly detected in the air!

Forecast downgraded to partly Sunny with a 40% probability of Trolls coming in from the East

10/18/2006 03:23:00 PM  
Blogger gumshoe1 said...

Karl's post at 2:12 PM
essentially states that he has not had *any* experience
of God's grace.

it would seem fairly clear,therefore,
that he thinks all discussions of such a thing would undoubtledly represent
"psuedo-intellectual blather"

any questions?

10/18/2006 03:40:00 PM  
Blogger Joe Katzman said...

Y'all were too quick to pounce on Cardozo Bozo.

GB says:

"Materialism can offer meaning only insofar as matter is understood to be logoistic, in which case science is nothing less than the perpetual unveiling of ever deeper layers of our ineluctably theophanous cosmos."

I tend to be on that page. In his return post, CB says:

"Although I present it as a statement (I won't clutter your comments area with long essays), I have reason to believe that the Universe is fundamentally bottom-up to the exclusion of any top-down design or control. There is no 'top-down' nature to understand, because it does not exist. We can pretend it's there, and make up reasons for why it appears to be there, but that doesn't make it real."

These two statements are not necessarily contradictory.

GB's original response of "If there is no truth to be known, then there is no reason to pay attention to you. But if truth may be known, there is every reason not to pay attention to you." ...was brilliant and spot on as a response to what was posted.

But CB has just stated that agrees with sentence #1. That is to say, there is such a thing as reality/truth. So he has stepped back a lot from what his first post seemed to argue.

What he questions (though I believe in it) is such a thing a Truth/G-d as the organizing principle of all. If you take his modified statement as a belief that truth must be sought from the bottom up, CB is left as nothing less or more than the incarnation of the scientific method as practiced by the atheist or agnostic.

J. Bronowski (q.v. "Science & Human Values") can explain where this leads - and if The Habit of Truth is made real in this way, it leads not to the horrors of the 20th century, but to Western society, respect for the individual, and a politics of liberty that must be brought in its train.

That deserves a certain respect. To Cardozo Bozo, therefore, I say

"Well-wishes in your quest to find smaller manifestations of truth in your bottom-up searches. They enrich us all. I ask only that you consider where the notion of Truth comes from, and how it can best be preserved as a standard beyond human dictate, as a thing recognized by man but not made by man. If you ask such questions, I believe you will recognize in your heart that the truly religious are your brothers and sisters, though you may not believe what they believe. They, in turn, will delight in your own pursuit of truths, and hope it leads you first to an appreciation of the beautiful via inspiration and harmony (key to the scientific pursuit of truth), and thence perhaps to the Good and to how we may all best keep The Compact of Ages."

For Western society is a society of science AND a certain faith; that each needs the other for reasons it often does not understand. These times, are, alas, advertisements for that proposition.

Though I am a religious person, I can make that argument without requiring my interlocutors to share that religious orientation.

Which is good, because in the end the important thing on a societal level is not the religion itself, but the understanding that respects and promotes the rightly-conducted search for Truth, Beauty and The Good. That Compact of Ages understands that both science and faith combine to form the arch under which we all need to stand while we make our smaller, individual choices (including the personal choice of faith itself). And that the destruction or grave diminishment of EITHER pole must in the end bring the whole down on our collective heads.

10/18/2006 05:00:00 PM  
Blogger Alan said...

Joe; Your last paragraph is an religious statement in and of itself.

You don't get there by believing that an atom is the parent the molecule is the parent of dna is the parent of the cell is the parent of the human and ultimately is the source of all meaning.

Everyone has a religion, as this blog and associated commenters have helped me clarify for myself. All exist on a continuum of alignment with reality and lack of internal contradiction.

10/18/2006 06:43:00 PM  
Anonymous Will said...

Alan, re your question yesterday about the film Scanners - that was the one with the exploding heads, right?

Or is the exploding head a motif in all Cronenberg films?

10/18/2006 06:54:00 PM  
Blogger Alan said...

Will: Yes - you got it.

Given today's comments from McCain, perhaps he too is envisioning the same reaction by Republicans if they lose.

Sorry for the somewhat obscure (and Canadian) reference

I think Cronenberg's films tend to have some viscerally shocking components in them - this one just had exploding heads.

He's not my favorite director though scanners stuck in my head because I was a typical male adolscent when it came out originally (my wife is chiming in "what do you mean 'was'!".

10/18/2006 10:05:00 PM  
Blogger ppab said...

"Once there were brook trout in the streams in the mountains. You could see them standing in the amber current where the white edges of their fins wimpled softly in the flow. They smelled of moss in your hand. Polished and muscular and torsional. On their backs were vermiculate patterns that were maps of the world in its becoming. Maps and mazes. Of a thing which could not be put back. Not be made right again. In the deep glens where they lived all things were older than man and they hummed of mysery."

-Cormac McCarthy, The Road

10/18/2006 10:30:00 PM  
Blogger jw said...

My thinking has more to do with "What is truth?" This is a neither left nor right question.

For instance, one of the great problems the men's movement are trying to solve is the habit of preferring a know to be abusive mother over a known to be not-abusive father. It's quite a problem and accounts for a significant percentage of our child abuse and a very significant percentage of our murdered children.

Now, both the right and the left stand opposed to fixing the problem, for different reasons, but opposed none the less.

So? Then where is truth?

It is not on the right or on the left. It is not in the women's groups with the exception of the rightist women's groups (who stand opposed to their menfolk and are suffering for it).

Truth is not in the centre as the centrists are too afraid of the extremes to challenge either.

Truth is not in religion as the religions refuse to take a stand which is "anti-woman" in spite of the rightist women demanding they do so.

Some reading this can now see the problem: Truth has been defined as non-truth because too few are willing to face truth.

We've seen these sorts of problems before. Sadly, the resolution is always nasty.

10/19/2006 03:20:00 AM  
Anonymous Joarjay said...

The Problem with Mirrors as Windows:

"It makes no sense at all--certainly less sense than the religious traditions they deride and dismiss--but that’s an intellectual for you. They always believe that their abstractions are more real than reality, and that reality itself is a diseased deviation from their beautiful ideas. It’s one of the reasons they detest liberty, because they cannot accept the idea that the robust “bottom up” order produced by chaotic liberty surpasses their own beautiful ideas of how the good society should be imposed by leftist elites from on high."

Who's imposing "order" on whom here? Who can't accept the robust bottom up order of chaotic liberty? Methinks it's time for the cobbler to drop the blog, as once promised, and work on his own shoes. Practice what you preach, seeker. Stop preaching and start looking again. You're as lost as any of the rest of us, and a crowd of the similarly-bent lost gathered at your feet doesn't suddenly render you all found. It just increases the power of the mirror to delude.

Ego will lead you to rancor, not peace. This whole blog is a testimony to the truth of that idea. God promises everlasting peace, everlasting joy.

10/19/2006 04:05:00 AM  
Anonymous Petey said...

Brilliant! I'll share your awesome banalities with Bob just as soon as I can get between him and the mirror.

10/19/2006 05:34:00 AM  
Anonymous joarjey said...

Hmm. An "altar ego" created to present a public display of sarcasm and dismissal without any need for cogent reflection or response.

Differing viewpoint + self knowledge versus
differing viewpoint + ego defense.
The truth is in the details. As is the proof.
You make my point well.

BTW, case in point: Get your "Petey" out from between you and the window so you can more clearly see who you are deifying.

10/19/2006 06:37:00 AM  
Blogger Eeevil Right Wing Nut said...

“Who's imposing "order" on whom here? Who can't accept the robust bottom up order of chaotic liberty?”

Clearly the answer to both questions is you, Joarjay. Evidently you do not agree with the ideas Bob and the Bobbleheads discuss here so it should be shut down. Where does your authority to decide who should express their ideas and what those ideas should be come from? Is your authority derived from being less “lost” than the rest of us? If you were to truly practice what YOU preach, you wouldn’t have posted your comment for you are not “all found” either.

The very essence of “bottom up order of chaotic liberty” is the free exchange of ideas that you DON’T have to agree with. Neither reading nor agreeing with Bob’s ideas is mandatory. Take it or leave it. Agree or disagree; the choice belongs to the reader


“Ego will lead you to rancor, not peace. This whole blog is a testimony to the truth of that idea.”

That you wish to silence Bob says more about you than it does about Bob’s blog.

10/19/2006 07:21:00 AM  
Anonymous Harvey said...

In terms of science and beliefs which seem closely related within many of these types of discussions, there seems to be a repetitive and interesting emergence, which could either be looked at as a waste of everyone’s time or be seen as a collective development of each other understanding wasted through emotional links.

In all discussions there seem to be differing views which is where the comments stem from (i.e. people agree or disagree with what has been said). When, in fact, from the perspective of the person who said the initial comment they are and always will be correct. This perspective issue is amusing in that however intelligent a person is they will always make the opposing comment and argue there new comment when it eventually comes under fire.
So we have in this example 2 comments both right in their own context but both seemingly wrong to one or more interested parties.
So it would be reasonable to suggest that a truly enlightened or intelligent person would never argue against or for a point because just as they know their oppositions point is correct from its own perspective they also know their own is incorrect from many almost infinite (except for their own) perspectives, yet most still make the comment.
Now I can see that to discuss a point is to grow everyone’s collective understanding of everything and each others perspective, but personally I don’t believe a useful or insightful comment/idea will ever come from discussion as it will always be emotively driven.
It may be nicer if society had developed in way that was focused away from proposed ideas of intellectual discussion (i.e. the promotion that one persons understanding of an idea is better than another’s and therefore can and should be taught to others) for maybe a more useful idea of decreasing equal and opposite stupidity (will try and think of a better word(s) for it) as this may hold less emotional context within the discussion (both individuals admitting they are wrong but wishing to know more than they already do rather than wanting to believe they know more than each other).
Maybe if this differing social thinking existed then the problems with religion, teaching ID in schools/science etc etc would not be problems but more interesting and fun parts of everyone’s life.
I suppose simply put
"you say what you want to say, ill say what I want to say, let anyone who will, listen and let no one control, criticise or be harmed by what's said."

10/19/2006 08:50:00 AM  
Anonymous joarjey said...

ERWN:
All good points. In fact I don't wish to silence Bob's blog, and I told him so in a subsequent comment, which he did not post. I wish to voice my opinion of his constant stream of criticism and ridicule toward those whose ideas don't jibe with his own. As if damning the left will make the right right. It's not that simple. And it takes one with vertical aspirations to see the complexity. As is frequently discussed in these comments.

But the sanctimonious tone and predatory nature of the Bobbleheads deserves its own role call from time to time. "..probability of trolls coming in from the east?" And the difference between a "shark" idling for trolls in familiar water and a "troll" venturing into strange territory, when the comments are finally aired, is exactly what? Venon is venom. I don't deny mine.

I don't claim to be found, or less lost. I claim to be looking, which is why I come here. Sometimes I come to vent spleen. Mea culpa. I'm just a piece of eternity trapped in a human body, and sometimes the human wins. Usually when I come here I come to learn, and I keep my mouth shut.

However I'm always just visiting, as is my right. Some of you, and Bob of course, live here. You need to get out more. Lighten up. As Pogo aptly put it pre-blog, "I have seen the enemy, and he is us."

10/19/2006 09:43:00 AM  
Anonymous hoarhey said...

Hmmm, must have pissed a troll off in a past life.
That's joarjay (or is it joarjey) with two HARD J's folks.
Amazing how Bob has become even more lucid and effective since he "quit" awhile ago isn't it JoarJay?

10/19/2006 10:06:00 AM  
Anonymous tsebring said...

Harvey said: "you say what you want to say, ill say what I want to say, let anyone who will, listen and let no one control, criticise or be harmed by what's said."

This sounds like about as perfect an example of the moral relativism that Bob has been adressing as I have ever seen - the idea that there is no higher truth, and that no one is right and no one is wrong (one of the reasons why leftists like Chomsky are against grading in schools and sports - it actually requires that someone win and someone lose - a concept even a 3 year old understands). No person's belief system is worth squat unless he is willing to have it challenged and be able to either defend it or reconsider it. Only insecure individuals with fragile egos attempt to shut down the time-honored process of Socratic debate by claiming that criticism is unfair and that "Everybody's Beautiful, in their own way". Debate is why we live in a republic rather than a dictatorship. Debate is what some universities are trying to shut down by silencing those they don't agree with. Martin Luther defended his beliefs at the risk of his life; thus the Reformation began. Moral Relativism squelches the debate that keeps ideas flowing and creates a stagnant pool of sewage.

10/19/2006 10:30:00 AM  
Anonymous hoarhey said...

BTW Shoprat, I like your "glamour" pic. Very unassuming.

10/19/2006 10:43:00 AM  
Anonymous tsebring said...

Bob,
excellent insights into the depths of spiritual pathology. I have always thought that postmodernism and nihilism were signs of a person who was necessarily brilliant but probably - well, a little unbalanced. I think of the writings of Sylvia Plath or the poetic ramblings of Charles Manson, two clearly pathological individuals whose world views actually seem to agree with those of the far left at times. Many conservative radio folks talk about how some of Osama's rants resemble Democrat talking points. Somewhat true, I think, and very unsettling, if you think about it.

I am also reminded of an episode of the orginal Star Trek entitled "Is there in Truth no Beauty?" (itself a pretty loaded question). The Enterprise brings aboard an alien ambassador from a race called the Medusans, whose appearace is so hideous that looking upon them renders the viewer insane. I am reminded of the true ugliness of where nihilism, taken to its logical conclusion, leads. It is hard for me to see how a person can embrace such fierce ugliness that is so against our innate human sensibilities without it causing him to become seriously unbalanced, unless he was that unbalanced to begin with. Nihilists that I have met are either pathologically merry all the time (like that Peggy Lee song) or in constant depression (like Plath). There is plenty of true orthodox nihilism to be found in our psychiatric hospitals and prisons.

10/19/2006 10:56:00 AM  
Blogger Tin Foil Hat Guy said...

Beautiful... Well I guess I can say that objectively, can't I?

You echo C.S. Lewis Bob.... Men without chests....

God Bless you Bob, just for a few moments each day, I get to breath rarified air..

tinfoilhatguy

10/19/2006 05:31:00 PM  
Blogger Van said...

In “The Problem with Mirrors as Windows” joarjay, in order said...
rhetorical question, rhetorical question, poor attempt at humor analogy, follow-up ass-exertion #1 to the poor analogy, , follow-up ass-exertion #2 to the poor analogy, additional groundless ass-exertion, finishing up with a non-sequitor.

Next we get a platitude, followed by a foolish opinion, and finally another platitude.

In all of that there is not a single argument or thought.

Joarjay, I suspect that when you take a look through the windows into your soul, I'll bet you see little more than a fool mirrored in them.

10/19/2006 06:05:00 PM  
Blogger Van said...

joarjay, amid the confusion of your mirrors and windows, you seem to have gotten lost and forgot to make any point.

Probably just as well that you don't handle sharp objects.

10/19/2006 06:07:00 PM  
Blogger Van said...

harvey said..."I suppose simply put "you say what you want to say, ill say what I want to say, let anyone who will, listen and let no one control, criticise or be harmed by what's said." .

I'd say 'easy for you to say', but that would clearly be a mistake. You might try grammar check, but I think a spaghetti strainer might be more useful. I the quote above is meant to summarize what the rest of your comment... um, said ... why would you, or anyone, bother saying it or anything else?

10/19/2006 06:15:00 PM  
Blogger Van said...

joarjey said... "But the sanctimonious tone and predatory nature of the Bobbleheads deserves its own role call from time to time. "..probability of trolls coming in from the east?"

Personally, I love a good thoughtful question that challenges my assumptions, especially if it exposes an error of mine that I hadn't been aware of. If you search back through this blog, you'll find that sincere questions are often the source of a string of back and forth comments giving Bob & the Bobbleheads sincere evaluations & further questions upon it, back and forth.

But the silly assertions and spleen splat such as what you've deposited here today receive only the recreational slamming they so richly deserve.

10/19/2006 06:30:00 PM  
Blogger Van said...

pant, pant, pant... whew! Just trying to catch up to tomorrow... today... sheesh.

10/19/2006 06:31:00 PM  
Anonymous joarjey said...

Q: How do you arrive at a destination in circles?

A: Hop in a van, replace all the windows with mirrors, crank the wheel hard to the right, step on the gas and enjoy the ride...hey look, you're already there!

Pant pant. Arf arf. Good doggie.

10/19/2006 08:56:00 PM  
Blogger Van said...

Hooray for joarjey another fine display of reasoning.

To the horizontal point of view this van may appear to be going in circles, but from the vertical you can see it's actually spiraling upwards.

Probably just the sun sparkling off the mirrors makes it difficult for you to see.

Fetch.

10/19/2006 09:33:00 PM  
Blogger DWPittelli said...

I agree with much of your post. However, I don’t think that multiculturalists and other leftist “ists” deny all truth or the good. They are opposed to, for example, the subjugation and violence against women. It’s just that they worship the victimhood that comes from living in a backward or third-world society, to the extent of absolving the victims of all moral responsibility (i.e., they treaty them like infants). They also worship the nobility that comes from opposing our own, deeply corrupt society. A third-world man or nation can thus be criticized, theoretically, for wife-beating or clitoridectomy, but such criticism should be no more severe than that leveled for the excesses of a three-year-old, or of a WWII French resistance leader.

10/20/2006 04:50:00 AM  
Blogger Shep Barbash said...

"If you are any kind of materialist or secularist, you must be intellectually honest and affirm that there is no such reason aside from those that we simply make up. And this is precisely what the secular left does."

It's also what Shakespeare (often) does: "Nothing is good or bad but that thinking makes it so." But somehow calling the Bard a 'secular leftist' misses the mark. Great artists provide the strongest proof that 'securalism' need not devolve into standard-less, inquiry-less multi-culti pap.

10/20/2006 06:22:00 AM  
Anonymous jerry said...

Gagdad Bob,
I'd say politics is a bit like a trial, there's always a side prosecuting and a side defending - this is the nature of politics.

Democrats would be failing in their duty if they weren't critical of the President, and there simply are very many reasons to criticize this Administration I can't possibly list them all here).

I also think that there is a conflict in criticizing a President during a war, and that you might by confusing this reticence with a lack of vision by the left.

About God, Darwin, and soul-less academics - first, if you think eternal social or esthetic truths aren't taught at the great academic institutions you simply know nothing of what is taught and why people devote themselves to scholarship.

I'd also think that you have little understanding of Darwin or modern evolutionary teaching, in this way you resemble the misguided politicos who coopted "Darwinism" a hundred years ago - your politics keeps poor people stupid, the Social Darwinists politics accomplished the same goal albeit more brutally.

Lastly, I'm offended when people presume to speak for God or presume to have a better understanding of God - I'd prefer to see some reticence and humility when stepping into that territory.

10/20/2006 07:47:00 AM  
Anonymous Petey said...

Jerry--

Given your silly opinions, we are not surprised that you would have such a high opinion of wackademia, nor are we surprised that you are offended by the idea that some people have a better understanding of God than you do. We are never offended by the fact that some people have a better idea of God than we do. Indeed, we thank God for it every day.

10/20/2006 08:40:00 AM  
Blogger the patriarch said...

You set up some impressive straw men and knock them down nicely. Strict Darwinians and moral relativists are easy prey and not found in any substantial numbers outide of colleges and/or past the age of 25.

10/20/2006 08:45:00 AM  
Anonymous Jenny said...

Jerry, Bob or any of the "Bobbleheads" here are not presuming to speak for God, we are seeking to understand God better through discussion, thought and getting to the truth, which you apparently are failing to comprehend. No one here is forcing you to believe one way or the other. If you can use the information discussed here good, if you can't, move on you're hanging out with the wrong crowd and wasting your time and ours.

And how condescending and pompous you sound in your exhortation for others with a different opinion than yours to have more humility. Further, we don't care if you are offended. God's opinion is the one that ultimately matters, and that's what we seek.

10/20/2006 09:11:00 AM  
Anonymous joarjey said...

vanllucid:

Here's to truthiness and bobservation!

According to your last comment, your vertical view renders circles as spirals & your horizontal yields no clues toward vertical ascendance. I understand now we don't see eye to eye: I'm standing up when I refer to vertical.

I'm hazarding a guess that you, like all devoted Bobbleheads, may have some axis to grind. No wonder the world seems a threatening place. It will seem more tractable once you learn to stand, and eventually walk.

10/20/2006 09:30:00 AM  
Anonymous cousin dupree said...

Van--

Perhaps you haven't noticed, but you are no longer responsible for troll abatement, so don't feel obligated to respond. I am now on board full time to deal with them, but only those who are not already self-refuting, as this one is.

10/20/2006 10:18:00 AM  
Blogger Randy said...

Just found your blog... amazing. Very good post. There are parts that I have trouble with (regarding the timing of man's appearance) but overall I am very impressed with your intellect and ability to communicate. I will definitely continue checking in.

10/20/2006 11:37:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Actually, Hitler was not "healthier" than the people he murdered.

Hitler is dead.

The People of Israel live.

10/20/2006 11:38:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Bob, Wretchard over at Belmont Club (political blog) put in a trackback to this posting of yours.

His comment thread turned into a Creation-vs-Evolution fight from the first comment...

10/20/2006 04:21:00 PM  
Blogger Joe Katzman said...

Alan said: "You don't get there by believing that an atom is the parent the molecule is the parent of dna is the parent of the cell is the parent of the human and ultimately is the source of all meaning."

No, but then the people you're talking about don't believe your characterization, because you got it wrong.

The direct and emergent properties of atoms build molecules, some of which can build DNA, which can in certain instruction sets create cells and even humans.

Its not about "parents" - and all of these relationships were imagined, pursued, and tested by a scientific method that has proven itself far superior to religious belief in arriving at empirical truths.

The source of all meaning is, of course, a NON-empirical Truth and hence outside the realm of science. Its inclusion is inappropriate - either by materialists who wrongly make the leap, or by spiritual people who mischaracterize science.

The thing is, there are some non-empirical items that are damn important, especially at a cultural/societal level. Europe is indeed the poster child for the effects of a culture's loss of soul. Not pretty, and not good.

If science wishes to continue doing its thing, it needs to work within a culture that won't hand its practitioners (and those who have its required mindset) over to the first religious fanatic - leftist, or Islamist. That has failed before and speaking empirically, it didn't go very well thereafter.

So there are some spiritual values that science needs, but do not derive from science. Respect for those is not only appropriate, but necessary. When Dawkins says that religion has never accomplished anything positive, he's traducing that and in fact undermining everything he stands on.

On the other side, many say that science is not enough, and 'values' cut off from their religious roots are like cut flowers that must wither in time and perish. I agree.

I add that this is also true in the case of scientific values. There are important values that have science at their root, and the principles and obligations they uphold are things you value deeply: Truth. Beauty/Unity. Liberty.

What science can do is help us become more responsile stewards and participants in the One Cosmos, by understanding a little better each time how The Source of All Meaning has set things up to work. And even more important than the understanding, made us fitter pursuers of the requirements of this quest: inspiration, truth, higher unities... all of which have a tendency to become first flabby and then calcified under the orthodoxy of religion, which lacks an equivalent challenge/test system.

That deserves respect from seekers of truth via religion. Lack of respect for that challenge/test system tends to lead the religious to places that are not only foolish, but ultimately not very spiritual.

And so, the two need each other. Often not realizing this, nor understanding why. But if this is really about evolving consciousness in the One Cosmos, I'm willing to make both an empirical and a spiritual case that this is so.

10/20/2006 04:40:00 PM  
Blogger Van said...

Shep Barbash said... "'Nothing is good or bad but that thinking makes it so.' But somehow calling the Bard a 'secular leftist' misses the mark. Great artists provide the strongest proof that 'securalism' need not devolve into standard-less, inquiry-less multi-culti pap. "

I posted about this a little while ago on my site. The line is from Hamlet, but it is the first line of the Play that is, IMHO, the theme of the play "Who's there?", and gives more contextual meaning to the line you quoted. Hamlet returns home with all his fine Renaissance university learning, and has many fine ideas and plans, but no beliefs or convictions. How many times does Hamlet ponder and ponder, but never connect thought to deed?

Reason is a fine thing, when it is directed to encompass all of your knowledge, enabling you to bring all of your skills and abilities to bear on a problem - but when it's cut off from its roots in reality, making it impossible to connect the dots in your life, at that point your fine learning becomes an albatross around your neck.

How many times does Hamlet ponder and ponder, but never connect thought to deed?

Who's there? It is his self indulgent moroseness and indecisiveness that ultimately brings about the deaths of Polonius. The actions he does take are sporadic, without thought, and when he see's a body behind a tapestry and knowing nothing but his snap assumption, stabs it with his sword and killing poor befuddled Polonius.

I think that sums up the leftist acadanemic thought of today rather well, and proves even further that Shakespeare did write for the ages.

10/20/2006 05:01:00 PM  
Blogger Van said...

Cousin dupree, yeah I've got to admit you did have the right call on that last one, good to hear you're full time now, 50, 60, 70 comments a post ain't no part time gig!

Hopefuly my new title doesn't preclude me from lending a hand here and there though - gotta keep fit ya know.

By the way Joarjey, I figured you'd jump to that conclusion, but if you're flat on your back with only your eyes pointing up, the spirals appear to be circles and each one ever smaller, but instead the reality is it's reaching higher and farther with each cycle.

Work on sitting up first, then standing then go for some baby steps... you can do it, just need some faith.

(Sorry cousin', couldn't resist)

10/20/2006 05:22:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Volition... Our God given right that all deserve.

10/22/2006 04:48:00 AM  

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