Saturday, April 9, 2016

Verse.....................

13  Happy is the man that findeth wisdom, and the man that getteth understanding.
14  For the merchandise of it is better than the merchandise of silver, and the gain thereof than fine gold.
15  She is more precious than rubies: and all the things thou canst desire are not to be compared unto her.
16  Length of days is in her right hand; and in her left hand riches and honour.
17 Her ways are ways of pleasantness, and all her paths are peace.

18  She is a tree of life to them that lay hold upon her: and happy is every one that retaineth her.
19  The Lord by wisdom hath founded the earth; by understanding hath he established the heavens.
20  By his knowledge the depths are broken up, and the clouds drop down the dew.
21  My son, let not them depart from thine eyes: keep sound wisdom and discretion:
22  So shall they be life unto thy soul, and grace to thy neck.
23  Then shalt thou walk in thy way safely, and thy foot shall not stumble.
24  When thou liest down, thou shalt not be afraid: yea, thou shalt lie down, and thy sleep shall be sweet.
25  Be not afraid of sudden fear, neither of the desolation of the wicked, when it cometh.
26  For the Lord shall be thy confidence, and shall keep thy foot from being taken.
-The Holy Bible, Proverbs 3:12-26

No, No..........................
























via

Fashioned..............................




















"My atheism, like that of Spinoza, is true piety towards the universe and denies only gods fashioned by men in their own image, to be servants of their human interests."

-George Santayana

By all means............................



Opening paragraphs.............


History is what happened before you were born.  That is why it is so hard to learn from history:  the mistakes were made by the previous generation.  As a student in the 1960s, I knew why the q930s were such a bad time.  Outdated economic ideas guided the decisions of governments and central banks, while the key individuals were revealed in contemporary photographs as fuddy-duddies who wore whiskers and hats and were ignorant of modern economics.  A younger generation, in academia and government, trained in modern economics, would ensure that the Great Depression of the 1930s would never be repeated.

Mervyn King,  The End of Alchemy:  Money, Banking, and the Future of the Global Economy

Be a well-baked loaf................


Forget the world
And so command the world

Be a lamp, or a lifeboat, or a ladder.
Help someone’s soul heal.
Walk out of your house like a shepard.

Stay in the spiritual fire.
Let it cook you.
Be a well baked loaf
And lord of the table.

Come and be served to your brothers.

You have been a source of pain
Now you’ll be the delight.
You have been an unsafe house,
Now you’ll be the one who see into the Invisible.

I said this and a Voice came to my ear,
“If you believe this, you will be That.”

Then silence
And now more silence.

A mouth is not made for talking
A mouth is made for tasting this sweetness.

Same things on their minds...............





A man wants to work for his pay
A man wants a place in the sun
A man wants a gal proud to say
That she'll become his lovin' wife
He wants a chance to give his kids a better life
Well hello, hello, hello brother

You can travel all around the world and back
You can fly or sail or ride a railroad track
But no matter where you go you're gonna find
That people have the same things on their minds

A man wants to work for his pay
A man wants a place in the sun
A man wants a gal proud to say
That she'll become his lovin' wife
He wants a chance to give his kids a better life
Well hello brother, hello

Thursday, April 7, 2016

Wednesday, April 6, 2016

Tincture of philosophy................

























"The man who has no tincture of philosophy goes through life imprisoned in the prejudices derived from common sense, from the habitual beliefs of his age or his nation, and from convictions which have grown up in his mind without the co-operation or consent of his deliberate reason.  To such a man the world tends to become definite, finite, obvious;  common objects rouse no questions, and unfamiliar possibilities are contemptuously rejected...[But Philosophy] keeps alive our sense of wonder by showing familiar things in an unfamiliar aspect."

-Bertrand Russell

Humanity........................




















"Love and compassion are necessities, not luxuries.  Without them humanity cannot survive."
-The 14th Dalai Lama

Yeah, but tell us how you really feel..............














“We have to create culture, don't watch TV, don't read magazines, don't even listen to NPR. Create your own roadshow. The nexus of space and time where you are now is the most immediate sector of your universe, and if you're worrying about Michael Jackson or Bill Clinton or somebody else, then you are disempowered, you're giving it all away to icons, icons which are maintained by an electronic media so that you want to dress like X or have lips like Y. This is shit-brained, this kind of thinking. That is all cultural diversion, and what is real is you and your friends and your associations, your highs, your orgasms, your hopes, your plans, your fears. And we are told 'no', we're unimportant, we're peripheral. 'Get a degree, get a job, get a this, get a that.' And then you're a player, you don't want to even play in that game. You want to reclaim your mind and get it out of the hands of the cultural engineers who want to turn you into a half-baked moron consuming all this trash that's being manufactured out of the bones of a dying world.” 

-Terence McKenna

image via

All...................................


Scary thought of the day...................




















So, I was out walking early this morning and came across this sign.  Hmmm.  Could that possibly be true?   After ruminating on it for the next half hour, my conclusion was:  Nope.  Nothing in my belief system makes me think that sign is correct.    Of course, our society has had a recent penchant for conflating ego and god.   Looking at it from that perspective..............

Fifty years ago................


On the television..................................................Daktari

Tuesday, April 5, 2016

The bigger the dog, well, the harder the bite....


Lynyrd Skynyrd.................................................I Know A Little

Fifty years ago....................


Blues Magoos..............................We Ain't Got Nothing Yet

Contradictions..........................















“We have been to the moon, we have charted the depths of the ocean and the heart of the atom, but we have a fear of looking inward to ourselves because we sense that is where all the contradictions flow together.” 


-Terence McKenna

On solitude............................................









"I live in that solitude which is painful in youth, but delicious in the years of maturity."


-Albert Einstein

Monday, April 4, 2016

Whatever happened to wishes wished on a star?


Jefferson Airplane........................................Comin' Back To Me

How confident are you....................


.................................that you truly understand the big picture?












































Color me clueless.

photos via APOD

Fifty years ago......................


The Byrds........................................................Mr. Spaceman

Ixnay the Epiphany........................


















What I mean to say is this: embrace the limbo period. Take risk. Question things. Do not wait for certainty to act…because it isn’t coming. It never has.
-Ryan Holliday, as excerpted from this blog post

Twilight of the Climate Change Movement....


This essay at The American Interest blog takes a peek at the climate wars.  First, the author suggests we take the long view:

It’s an amusing irony that fears of global warming have arisen during what is technically an ice age, namely the Pleistocene Ice Age, which began about 2.6 million years ago. A geological “ice age” typically lasts millions of years and is characterized by cycles of glaciation, during which glaciers grow and oceans recede, punctuated by warmer interglacial periods, in which glaciers recede and oceans rise—such as the current Holocene interglacial, in which human civilization has flourished.

The history major in me is comfortable with the long view.  Besides, the composition of much of the soil in our county is a direct result of the Late Wisconsin glaciation.  When you contemplate that our neighborhood was under a vast sheet of ice only 20,000 years ago, the thought occurs that warming may not be such a bad thing.

Our essayist then takes pains to note the politics involved in the whole controversy, suggesting that some folks may be using the "crisis" to advance their own unspoken agendas.  Color me shocked. 

 Moving on, these two paragraphs were among my favorites:

Imagine something that is entirely possible—that a single such technological breakthrough enables us to control the world’s average temperatures. Could we then agree on what the ideal temperature should be? Is the current global average temperature the ideal one? Many would take that for granted, and climate alarmists appear to presuppose it, but the proposition is hardly self-evident. That is especially true given that even in the worst-case scenario, higher temperatures would not be completely devoid of benefits. Far more people die of cold than of heat. Marginally higher temperatures and carbon dioxide levels would likely increase the world’s overall production of plant biomass, and lengthen growing seasons, thereby reducing the proportion of the world’s land required for agricultural production and increasing the amount of land available for high-quality natural habitat.
To read the IPCC reports, alarmists find the idea of adapting to climate change far less satisfying than the idea of preventing it. But their focus on worldwide economic controls boils down to a kind of climate engineering, because it presupposes that humanity should not learn to live with a changing planet. Hence we are to believe that the most adaptable species that has ever existed, a species so sophisticated that it can survive in outer space, requires an absolutely stable average temperature and sea-level in order to survive. This defies common sense.

Appearances are deceptive............


Progress, even when it has predominated over regress, has seldom been without loss. Moreover, since we take progress for granted almost as soon as it has taken place, it never quite meets our expectations, at least not for very long. Progress is like a present given to a child who already has too many presents: it causes a very brief moment of delight and then, immediately afterwards is forgotten. Indeed, when it comes to technical improvements, we forget what it was like to be without them. For more than half of my life I did not have a computer, and for more than two thirds no access to the internet; but I find it difficult to recapture imaginatively what it was like to have lived without them. When I see an old film with, say, a scene in an old typing pool, with twenty women clacking away furiously at typewriters, I cannot resist laughing, so alien and bizarre does such a scene seem to me now. Try as one might to avoid doing so, one despises them a little for having been so backward, as if it were their own fault that they were in their prime of life fifty years ago instead of now, and as if we were personally responsible for having made all the technical progress since then. In fact, most of us don’t even know how a light switch works, let alone a computer. We are like rats in a behaviourist’s cage, except that it is technology, not a psychologist, that conditions us.

Theodore Dalrymple,  as excerpted from his My Road to Damascus essay

The mysteries of the human mind................


...............We are nothing, if not a complex and puzzling breed:

The headline reads:   Medieval copper scourge found...

If the back story is correct, those monks were wild and crazy guys.

Makes for an interesting morning commute...




















via

Elephants in the room..................




















Seth Godin on the power of speaking up, etc......................

Michael Wade on the complicity of silence.........................

Caption contest.........................



On worry................................


"It would be nice--but I won't for a second hold my breath--if the people who are so very worried about global climate change, which maybe--maybe--will affect our great-grandchildren would worry a little about vastly underfunded public pensions, a disaster which is right around the corner. "

-Craig Newmark, as culled from here

Trying to decide......................


......if I should stay up reading all night, or just go to bed:


Sunday, April 3, 2016

Some seeming anomaly................


























"Through every rift of discovery some seeming anomaly drops out of the darkness, and falls, as a golden link into the great chain of order. "

-Edwin Hubbel Chapin

It's getting to be that time of the year......


One of the all-time great golf shots.................................

The only proof.............................





















“If I should ever die, God forbid, let this be my epitaph:
THE ONLY PROOF HE NEEDED
FOR THE EXISTENCE OF GOD
WAS MUSIC” 


-Kurt Vonnegut

Just ignore the floaty woman......


The Byrds.........................................................Chestnut Mare

Beauty...........................



Fifty years ago..........................


The Byrds.......................................................Eight Miles High

How, not what.......................


     Sometimes I wonder if we've graduated an entire generation of hoop jumpers in America.  You say the rule, they comply.  You name the standard, they comply.  You pick the task, they comply.  But when you ask them to give you an original thought, listen to the silence.  There's so much emphasis these days on test scores and class rank that I think we're not doing enough to find the problem solvers and the truly creative thinkers.  They can memorize and regurgitate, but can they think and act when it really matters?  Teaching people what to think is one thing, but teaching people how to think is altogether different.

-Urban Meyer, as excerpted from Above The Line:  Lessons In Leadership And Life From A Championship Season

The right thing............................


"Why do people persist in their self-destructive behavior, ignoring the blatant fact that what they've been doing for many years hasn't solved their problems?  They think that they need to do it even more fervently or frequently, as if they were doing the right thing but simply had to try even harder."

-Alan Deutschman,  Change or Die:  The Three Keys to Change at Work and in Life

Laugh...............................

























“Laughter and tears are both responses to frustration and exhaustion. I myself prefer to laugh, since there is less cleaning do to do afterward.” 

-Kurt Vonnegut, Jr.

Only one rule........................























“Hello babies. Welcome to Earth. It's hot in the summer and cold in the winter. It's round and wet and crowded. On the outside, babies, you've got a hundred years here. There's only one rule that I know of, babies-"God damn it, you've got to be kind.” 

-Kurt Vonnegut, Jr

a living fountain..........................


"...when faith becomes an heirloom rather than a living fountain; when religion speaks only in the name of authority rather than with the voice of compassion - its message becomes meaningless.

-Abraham Heschel, as excerpted from here

Sick at heart...........................


     It was a routine speech we got during our first day of basic training, delivered by a wiry little lieutenant:  "Men, up to now you've been good, clean, American boys with an American's love for sportsmanship and fair play.  We're here to change that.  Our job is to make you the meanest, dirtiest bunch of scrappers in the history of the World.  From now on you can forget the Marquess of Queensberry Rules and every other set of rules.  Anything and everything goes.  Never hit a man above the belt when you can kick him below it.  Make the bastard scream.  Kill him any way you can.  Kill, kill, kill, do you understand?"

      His talk was greeted with nervous laughter and general agreement that he was right.  "Didn't Hitler and Tojo say the Americans were a bunch of softies?  Ha!  They'll find out."  And of course, Germany and Japan did find out:  a toughened up democracy poured forth a scalding fury that could not be stopped.  It was a war of reason against barbarism, supposedly, with the issues at stake on such a high that most of our feverish fighters had not idea why they were fighting - other than the enemy was a bunch of bastards.  A new kind of war, with all destruction, all killing approved.  Germans would ask, "Why are you Americans fighting us?"  "I don't know, but we're sure beating the hell out of you," was the stock reply.

      A lot of people relished the idea of total war:  it had a modern ring to it, in keeping with our spectacular technology.   To them it was like a football game:  "Give 'em the axe, the axe, the axe..."  Three small-town merchants' wives, middle-aged and plump, gave me a ride when I was hitchhiking home from Camp Atterbury.   "Did you kill a lot of them Germans?" asked the driver, making cheerful small talk.  I told her I didn't know.  This was taken for modesty.  As I was getting out of the car, one of the ladies patted me on the shoulder in a motherly fashion:  " I'll bet you'd like to get over and kill some of theme dirty Japs now, wouldn't you?"  We exchanged knowing winks.  I didn't tell those simple souls that I had been captured after a week at the front, and more to the point, what I knew and thought about killing dirty Germans, about total war.  The reason for my being sick at heart then and now has to do with an incident that received cursory treatment in the American newspapers.  In February, 1945, Dresden, Germany was destroyed, and with it over on hundred thousand human beings.  I was there.  Not many know how tough America got.

-Kurt Vonnegut,  Armageddon in Retrospect

And now a word........................


.........................................................from Alice's Restaurant: