Now that the crisis has passed in the Middle East, if only for the moment, the news seems to be singularly free of rantable material. Oh, there’s been another shooting, this time in a place where it raises even more questions than it does outrage…. The victims weren’t children, they were Naval workers, both those in the service, or civilians working for the Navy, and the shooter was a disgruntled Navy Reservist (though, in reality, even without firm information, I think we can safely say he was a bit beyond mere disgruntlement….) (Is that a word? Disgruntlement? I guess it is, Spell Checker didn’t even blink….), so it’s a little harder to feel the same degree of chagrin when it isn’t some crazy adolescent shooting back at the bullies….
Not that the victims deserved to be shot; that isn’t my point. It’s just harder to create controversy when the participants were all consenting adults, already engaged in activities that are, in at least one way, bound to bring some danger to one’s existence. I don’t know why this idiot nutted up, or what he was trying to accomplish, but a place where their entire purpose for existing is to create articles of war, is one that might conceivably be used as a logical target for anyone wanting to express their outrage, or in this case, probably anger, based on delusions.
It’s rather like someone who wears a gun on their hip, such as the police…. eventually, someone is going to shoot AT them, just because they are carrying…. Anyone who doesn’t acknowledge that truth is begging to get their head blown off for no good reason (I guess it has to be said…. IS there a good reason?…. The jury is still out on that one, ffolkes….). I don’t carry guns, as I believe in using weapons that aren’t so obvious, or so limited in usefulness, but, I was raised around them, and taught how to treat them with the respectful alertness that any dangerous part of life should be given. To ignore the realities of using weapons, of any kind, guns, knives, brains, explosives, whatever, is to invite one’s own demise by those self-same articles, and that is the simple truth.
But, Americans, for some reason, seem to think that passing a law will remove this truth from reality. Every time there is a new shooting, especially when children are involved as victims, or even as perpetrators, there is a huge outcry, and those who want to be protected from reality put out plaintive demands for more restrictive laws to control guns. This, in turn, prompts the survivalists and right-wing paranoids to believe the “guvviment” is going to “take away my guns”, so they too create a huge outcry, of resentment that anyone would challenge their entitlement, and their abject fear of facing life unarmed….
In truth, ANY kind of attempted change in morality in society as a whole is bound to fail in its purpose, because, like it or not, society’s morals are not subject to adjustment by the passage of laws. Trying to make society more moral by creating new laws, to control guns, or to reach ANY moral objective, is doomed to failure from the start.
Strange, isn’t it, how lately I seem to be confining my ranting to the intro section? It’s as if whatever I have to say is pushing its way out before I even get any coffee down… This does provide some rather intense emotional pressure to the ranting, I admit, giving it a good, sharp edge, but, I’m not sure the subjects I choose while still groggy are always going to be the best choice.
Oh well, it’s unproductive to worry about stuff like that before it happens, so, I’ll just take this as a good thing, and roll with it…. Besides, it’s a pretty good rant, even if I don’t offer any solutions…. I’m also not offering any judgments, other than those prompted by observation of facts, so, it all balances out…. If nothing else, it got us this far, right? Right….
Shall we Pearl?…..
“A society without religion is like a crazed psychopath without a loaded .45” — Smart Bee
😆 I can be a funny guy, sometimes, mostly because I laugh hardest whenever I look in a mirror…..
Another advantage to ranting immediately, I find, is that it frees me up to use the old-school technique for at least one of the three sections that make up a Daily Pearl, which always makes me happy… (I’m really a pretty simple guy, all in all; simple things make me happy….) It also, for some unknown, arguably self-serving, reason gives me leave to use the harlequin method, sans parameters to give SB for the search…. The real reason for that is, it seems to work best for SB’s efficiency level; I go through fewer hordes of quotes to find the right group when I give SB its head, so… Off we go…. I’d suggest you either strap in, or hang on….
“Even death is not to be feared by one who has lived wisely.” — Buddha
“Admit Nothing. Blame Everyone. Be Bitter.” — Matt Hopkins
“All national institutions of churches, whether Jewish, Christian, or Turkish, appear to me no other than human inventions, set up to terrify and enslave mankind, and monopolize power and profit.” — Thomas Paine
“The mind ought sometimes to be amused, that it may the better return to thought, and to itself.” — Phaedrus
“For he who lives more lives than one more deaths than one must die.” — Oscar Wilde
“A celibate clergy is an especially good idea, because it tends to suppress any hereditary propensity toward fanaticism.” — Carl Sagan, Contact
“We should be careful to get out of an experience only the wisdom that is in it – and stop there; lest we be like the cat that sits down on a hot stove-lid. She will never sit down on a hot stove-lid again, and that is well; but also she will never sit down on a cold one anymore.” — Mark Twain
Today’s poetry selection is also at the suggestion of Smart Bee; while searching out the group of pearls in section one, an excerpt from this poem came up, and I was reminded of how long it had been since I read the whole piece. It is a long poem, forty-two stanzas, all the same length as these two, the beginning two of the epic….. Rather than include all of it here, and making y’all scroll down to see the rest of the Pearl, I’ve included a link to the site where I found this copy of the poem, on PoemHunter.com, a very good site for finding good poetry, from all ages…. If you have some time, take some of it to read this entire poem; it is a marvel….
ST Agnes’ Eve—Ah, bitter chill it was!
The owl, for all his feathers, was a-cold;
The hare limp’d trembling through the frozen grass,
And silent was the flock in woolly fold:
Numb were the Beadsman’s fingers, while he told
His rosary, and while his frosted breath,
Like pious incense from a censer old,
Seem’d taking flight for heaven, without a death,
Past the sweet Virgin’s picture, while his prayer he saith.
His prayer he saith, this patient, holy man;
Then takes his lamp, and riseth from his knees,
And back returneth, meagre, barefoot, wan,
Along the chapel aisle by slow degrees:
The sculptur’d dead, on each side, seem to freeze,
Emprison’d in black, purgatorial rails:
Knights, ladies, praying in dumb orat’ries,
He passeth by; and his weak spirit fails
To think how they may ache in icy hoods and mails.
~~ John Keats ~~
I’ve looked, and I’ve patiently waited, to see if another rant surfaced in my consciousness, or, more likely, the same rant, back around for another dance, but, nothing is pushing its way into the light, so, I’ll take this opportunity to go build another old-school pearl, this time with some loose parameters for SB, just to mix it up….
I realized just now I’ve been pretty easy of late on churches, and the whole delusional system perpetrated on humanity by the professional shamans who call themselves priests, or preachers, or ministers, or some such pseudonym for what they actually are (which can be most accurately termed “tricksters”, or, “con-men”, or, most simply, “gay deceivers”…) I mean, think about it, logically, and dispassionately, for just a moment; the shadowy lack of substance of what these tricksters propose as reality blows away in the breeze of reason, whereupon it becomes clear…. these are people whose only goal in life is to tell you a story that will convince you to give them your money, by your own choice…. I can’t use the term “by free will” when people who fall for this aren’t using that particular faculty, at least not in the sense of being free of influence…
Any who, let’s see what Smart Bee has to say on the subject of religion, and churches, and the whole supernatural, metaphysical ball o’wax…..
“Doth not the sun harden the clay? Doth it not also soften the wax? As it is one sun that worketh both, even so it is one Soul that willeth contrarieties.” — Akhenaton? (c. B.C. 1375)
“Anybody who wants religion is welcome to it, as far as I’m concerned — I support your right to enjoy it. However, I would appreciate it if you exhibited more respect for the rights of those people who do not wish to share your dogma, rapture or necrodestination.” — Frank Zappa, “The Real Frank Zappa Book
“It is always dangerous to offend the dignity of the ignorant.” — Rene Caillie, 1827
REDEMPTION, n. Deliverance of sinners from the penalty of their sin, through their murder of the deity against whom they sinned. The doctrine of Redemption is the fundamental mystery of our holy religion, and whoso believeth in it shall not perish, but have everlasting life in which to try to understand it.
We must awake Man’s spirit from his sin,
And take some special measure for redeeming it;
Though hard indeed the task to get it in
Among the angels any way but teaming it,
Or purify it otherwise than steaming it.
I’m awkward at Redemption–a beginner:
My method is to crucify the sinner.
~~ Ambrose Bierce, The Devil’s Dictionary
“History records no more gallant struggle than that of humanity against the truth.” — Smart Bee
“knowlege is a polite word for dead but unburied imagination….think twice before thinking.” — e.e. cummings
RELIGION, n. A daughter of Hope and Fear, explaining to Ignorance the nature of the Unknowable.
“What is your religion my son?” inquired the Archbishop of Rheims.
“Pardon, monseigneur,” replied Rochebriant; “I am ashamed of it.”
“Then why do you not become an atheist?”
“Impossible! I should be ashamed of atheism.”
“In that case, monsieur, you should join the Protestants.”
~~ Ambrose Bierce, The Devil’s Dictionary
If I don’t stop too long to think about it, this was fun…. It’s done, in any case, so, after a cursory check of the entire piece for obvious typos or errors of structure (can’t do anything now about the content, ffolkes, just deal with it….), I’ll try to get it posted, before I lose my nerve….. Fat chance of that, but, hey, it sounds good….
Well, I’ve seen better, and I’ve seen worse, so, it will do…. For what they are worth, you have my good wishes for a wonderful day….
Y’all take care out there,
and May the Metaphorse be with you;
Blessed Be, dearest Carole, Mark, and Theresa…
and everyone else, too…
When I works, I works hard.
When I sits, I sits loose.
When I thinks, I falls asleep.
Which is Why….
Sometimes I sits and thinks,
I just sits.