With a suitably dour expression, the dowager duchess demurred….

Ffolkes,

“‘Tis not knowing much, but what is useful, that makes a wise man.”

~~ Thomas Fuller ~~

more palsBosom Buddies


In keeping with my resolution to lose weight (no, not a New Year’s resolution; I started three months ago…), and to take a more proactive attitude toward my overall health, I’m making good progress, 25 lbs; gone, so far, in 3 months…). In terms of the pain, not so much has been achieved, as yet, though I have high hopes, so to speak. In general, I also intend to be a bit less of a curmudgeon, at least in the way I look at certain subjects…. I have no intention of giving up my insistence on not suffering fools gladly; I’ll just be a little nicer to shopkeepers, and other folks who cannot properly defend themselves from my ire when they act stupid right in front of me…. It will probably help my karma, too, so, it’s a win-win…

So what does that mean for today’s intro? Not a damn thing, but, something had to go there, right? Right. Now that it has, I suppose it would be advisable to direct your attention to our next abortive attempt to engage your interest…. Sad thought the attempt was, (To be truthful, I tried to warn them/us/myself, it wouldn’t work… and, as you see, it didn’t….), it may not have snatched up your attention, to nail it on our chosen theme, but, it did get you down to this paragraph. Let’s see, where to now?….

Perhaps you’d like to see the pictures I got from…. no, that’s right, we don’t post genitalia pictures, thought I’m told some people get a lot of them sent to them via email…. I wish I got genitalia pictures in the mail; what a thrill that must be! (Why yes, you do detect a trifle bit of sardonicism in that statement…. why do you ask?….) What I would do with them isn’t clear, nor do I want to think about it, but, at least somebody out there could be nice enough to give me a choice in the matter…. How will I ever learn to judge them by quality of form?…. No, I’m not serious…. In fact, I believe I’m lost again, having completely wandered away from any sort of direction I may have thought to go….

Oh well, it’s okay…. Even though I spent a miserable night, and felt for a time like borrowing my neighbor’s AK-47, I managed to get back to sleep for an hour, which allowed me to rescue my mood, so as not to start the day with an urge to sink my remaining teeth into some soft, pink flesh…. preferably the throat of a Kaiser executive…. Oops, didn’t mean to rant, even for one partial sentence… Oh well, I guess that’s a good sign, indicating this would be a good time to get our asses out of here, and get on with today’s effort…. Okay, I’ll do it…. Watch….

Shall we Pearl?

“The countenance is the portrait of the soul, and the eyes mark its intentions.” — Cicero (B.C. 106-43)

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My friend Lou, at http://talesfromtheconspiratum.com/, sent me a link yesterday, with a suggested video for my readers to enjoy while reading their morning pearls…. I checked it out, and he’s right…. It’s a great little compilation of soothing sounds and music, suitable for reading, studying, meditating, or yoga…. take your choice….

Zen Garden – Cherry Blossoms, Relaxation & Meditation – 50 minutes

http://youtu.be/l_YSyUpf8Ec

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UBIQUITY, n.  The gift or power of being in all places at one time, but not in all places at all times, which is omnipresence, an attribute of God and the luminiferous ether only.  This important distinction between ubiquity and omnipresence was not clear to the medieval Church and there was much bloodshed about it.  Certain Lutherans, who affirmed the presence everywhere of Christ’s body were known as Ubiquitarians.  For this error they were doubtless damned, for Christ’s body is present only in the Eucharist, though that sacrament may be performed in more than one place simultaneously.  In recent times ubiquity has not always been understood — not even by Sir Boyle Roche, for example, who held that a man cannot be in two places at once unless he is a bird. — Ambrose Bierce, “The Devil’s Dictionary”

I’ve related my take on religion previously, but, I find the following rant from the archives makes fine reminder of why the entire concept is one we could do without, if we so chose…. Taking personal responsibility for our own morality has always seemed, to me, to be a much more moral way to live, than to allow others to determine for me how I should act…. My comments re: the rightness of eliminating those who deliberately harm others, or society, are a bit radical; in truth, they are a bit harsh even for me. In truth, though, ’tis no more radical than basing the same act on someone else’s idea of how morality should be defined….

From 12/6/2012:

Tsze-kung asked, saying, “Is there one word which may serve as a rule of practice for all one’s life?”  The Master said, “Is not Reciprocity such a word?  What you do not want done to yourself, do not do to others.” — Confucius (551-479 B.C.)

Ah yes, the Golden Rule…. For how long have the sages of our species been reiterating this rule? Years? Centuries? Millennia? Yes, all of the above. Yet, in today’s society, there is ample proof that a large portion of humanity totally ignores this rule, instead operating under a different rule, to wit: “I’m going to get mine first, and do unto others, first, before they can do unto me” This rule has never been precisely stated, unlike the Golden Rule, which has been stated in any number of ways over time. But, those who live by this rule are just as committed to their own self-interests as sages are to the interests of all…..

The struggle for the Soul of Man has been raging since the beginning of history, for though we now drive cars, and wear ties, and use telephones, our emotions and desires are the same ones we had when we lived in caves and ate unrefrigerated foods on a daily basis, if we were lucky. To this date, no one has been able to discover why some people just won’t go along with the program, but insist on making their own rules, to the detriment of everyone else. I suppose if we did discover the reason, it wouldn’t be a problem any more, but it is still frustrating to know that we are, as a species, still fighting the same old ignorances and cupidities that we had in the beginning of history, and are still losing far too often…..

I believe in the inherent goodness of people, but, at my age, I also must qualify that belief to include the very significant number of folks who choose to act against that part of their nature, giving rein to that beast in all of us that yearns to take, and to destroy. Yes, we have goodness in our makeup, but we also have evil, and there are a lot of people who choose to dwell on that side of their own nature, and basically don’t give a crap about what it means to other people. As long as they meet their own needs and desires, everyone else can just go to hell…. I don’t much like it, but it is true nonetheless….

So, I say this…. If one sees a person who is harming others by their actions, and you can determine that they are doing so deliberately, then I believe it is within the boundaries of the Golden Rule to destroy them on sight (or, at minimum, administer a sound thrashing)…. for this reason: if I were acting in such a manner, I would wish that the rest of rational society would judge me, and bring me under control, for the good of all. If that necessitated destruction, so be it; it is a final solution, if a bit harsh. I also do not believe that anyone who deliberately acts to harm others has the right to exist as part of society, and it is perfectly sensible to remove them….

I know, this sounds as if I’m speaking in favor of the death penalty, and in one sense, I am. Unfortunately, the one problem with the death penalty is that nobody can agree on who is capable of making the correct, rational, and honorable decision in such cases. Myself, I’m a bit more of a curmudgeon, and believe in personal responsibility…. so I’m not going to fret over killing a rapist, or a child molester, or a senior abuser, as long as their guilt is clear. They made their choice when they acted against the rules and morals of society, so my choice makes perfect sense in response, according to that same Golden Rule.

A bit different view of that rule, eh? Well, nobody claimed this would be a smooth, level flight, or a soft landing….

“I stared into the abyss. The abyss stared into me. Neither of us liked what we saw.” — Brother Theodore

Google says that this particular phrase is attributed to Brother Theodore (whoever he was….) Nietzsche gave a very similar expression, when he said , “He who fights with monsters might take care lest he thereby become a monster. And if you gaze for long into an abyss, the abyss gazes also into you.” Either one of these is a fitting closer for this section….

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Along the same lines as the above, here is one of mine, in what I would define as a call to reason….

Early Observations

Until I knew there was more,
I wanted to know God.
They said he was a nice guy,
and would let me live forever.

All I had to do, they said,
was live my life for Him,
always living by scripture
cleaving only to his Way.

But, everyone I saw in church,
acted different at home.
Living wild, cussin’ and fussin’,
nobody lived like they said.

Still, I tried to be like Jesus,
he was sort of cool.
He never hurt nobody
and walked on the right path.

‘Course they killed him for that,
they couldn’t stand his example.
Turned him into a martyr,
 hid his real words among their own.

Then I found the Buddha,
and met Lao Tzu at the gate.
They saw things real different,
showed me how to see straight.

Right thought, and right action
replace blind obedience and faith.
Reality becomes manageable,
fear retreats, the universe expands.

Brother John said it pretty well,
“Imagine there’s no heaven,
it’s easy if you try.”
Sounds like he knew why.

Day to day, life is grand,
we walk in eternal beauty.
Open your eyes and hearts,
find yourself already immortal.

~~ gigoid ~~


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This is what I’d call a prototypical pearl, which is of a variety which makes it plain life isn’t as simple as it seems, yet, provides us with all we need to understand any complexity, if we are open to developing a character of honor, dignity, and courage, tempered by kindness, and its outgrowth, compassion….

“Life is a struggle with the obvious. We have been so blinkered with expectations or so blinded with choices that seeing and accepting the obvious becomes rare and courageous.” — Callan Williams

“Just as treasures are uncovered from the earth, so virtue appears from good deeds, and wisdom appears from a pure and peaceful mind. To walk safely through the maze of human life, one needs the light of wisdom and the guidance of virtue.” — Buddha (B.C. 568-488)

“Man is a religious Animal. He is the only Religious Animal. He is the only animal that has the True Religion – several of them. He is the only animal that loves his neighbor as himself and cuts his throat if his theology isn’t straight” — Mark Twain (Samuel Clemens) — The Damned Human Race

“Determine never to be idle…It is wonderful how much may be done if we are always doing.” — Thomas Jefferson

“Character is much easier kept than recovered.” — Thomas Paine

“Of all the benefits that virtue confers upon us, the contempt of death is one of the greatest.” — Montaigne (1533-1592)

“What wisdom can you find that is greater than kindness?” — Jean-Jacques Rousseau

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Having survived the black hole that was my mind this morning, and emerged, relatively unscathed, on the other side of reality, I see that what I’ve created here today is, once again, more than I intended, while less than I’d hoped…. Not bad for a late start after a misery of a night…. I’ll take it, and run…. See y’all tomorrow, if all goes as planned…. Oh, I’d also like to mention the addition of Richy to our call for blessings in the ending blurb, as well as a brand new worthy sentiment, from our old friend, Oscar, which I’ve added to the very end, (the only appropriate place for it….), just for fun….

Y’all take care out there,
and May the Metaphorse be with you;
Blessed Be, dearest  Carole, Mark,Theresa, & Richy
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,
   and sometimes,
I just sits.

gigoid, the dubious

PLEASE STOP READING THIS MESSAGE NOW.

“SCRAM!!!!!!!!!!”- Oscar the Grouch


À bientôt, mon cherí….


			

A very private Bozo in most respects….

Ffolkes,

Thirty-some minutes later, I woke up, and tried again…. It’s pointless for me to get upset now; the damage is done, and mostly cleaned up, so no further time needs to be spent on this morning’s major flare-up of Murphyism, or in this instance, my own bozoid tendencies interacting with Murphy’s due diligence…. Hmm… that’s even more obscure than I intended, and is perfect proof that this entire process may not be a good idea today…. At the rate things are progressing, by the time I can finish a Pearl, or even a pearl, I’ll have lost a limb, and the house will be on fire….

I can’t chance it, ffolkes…. I’ve just completed the final clean-up task to be accomplished, and reality is up in active arms against me. Every action is being challenged, somehow, by another little piece of the environment, or maybe it’s by the coming to fruition of a long period of ripening potentiality, having been planted and nurtured by Murphy’s myrmidons while I slept. Thirteen years ago, when I first began to send out Pearls, I called what I was doing Gigoid’s Folly; (This was before I decided ‘gigoid’ was NOT to be capitalized… It’s easier to avoid ego-involvement without that kind of reminder each time one types it….)….. I’m thinking, now, perhaps, I should go back to that….

Nope, not necessary, nor is any of the above of any cosmic, or even mundane, significance to speak of…. Not that such matters matter, but, I do try to keep in at least what SEEMS to be minimum contact with at least a small portion or reality…. I also realize that isn’t always possible for me, so, just try to keep an open mind, and we may just get somewhere today….. Or not, the choice is not yet made, thank goodness….

Your guess as to where we might get to is as good as mine…. Take a second or two, and clear your mind…. Please… Now, re-read that last paragraph, without any context to the one above or below…. Now, tell me what it means…. That’s right, ffolkes, you’re correct…. I’ve slipped my moor completely…. My boat is drifting in the current, heading out to the open sea with no one at the tiller…. I’m going to have to resort to some pretty heavy-duty techniques now to get us back on the right path….

I know, we’ll use those time-tested politician’s tools, emotional manipulation and denial…..

I have no idea what you’re talking about, and I don’t know that woman; your lack of faith in me is very hurtful!…. I’m only here to get this Pearl fixed, so quit bothering me, will ya?….. Sheesh, what a man will do for less than minimum wages….

As you can now tell, it’s all gone to hell, and there is no further hope of achieving any sort of coherence now, or even rationality. I may have to send out for some completely outsourced material…. Ah well, at least I’ve screwed around long enough to call this an intro…. It doesn’t mean anything, it’s too long, and it’s almost believable, if one completely ignores the fact of its existence altogether…. Kind of Zen existentialist fundamentalism, you know?  Let’s see if Smart Bee is going to be of any help, and get on with this….

Shall we Pearl?

“Wise to resolve, and patient to perform.” — Alexander Pope (1688-1744) — The Odyssey of Homer, Book iv, Line 372
_____________________________

“Naturally the common people don’t want war. But after all, it is the leaders of a country who determine the policy, and it’s always a simple matter to drag people along whether it is a democracy of a fascist dictatorship, or a parliament, or a communist dictatorship. Voice or no voice the people can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders. This is easy. all you have to do is tell them they are being attacked, and denounce the pacifists for lack of patriotism and for exposing the country to danger. It works the same in every country.” — Hermann Goerring, Reich Marshall at the Nuremberg trials after WWII.

Sound familiar? It should; it’s been a matter of public record for over 65 years, and gets reiterated rather regularly when our government once again jumps into another “police action”, or “aggressive negotiations”, or some other form of what would otherwise be called war. I first saw it during the protests over the war in Vietnam, again for Cambodia, then Nicaragua, then Iran, Afghanistan, Iraq, and all the other military action our troops have seen since the end of the Korean Action in 1950.

Funny how that little clause in the Constitution has been pretty thoroughly thrown out the window in that time, isn’t it? We haven’t seen a Congressional declaration of war for many, many years, in spite of the Constitutional decree that our troops were not to go to battle without such a decree…. The presidents from Eisenhower to Obama have ignored any such requirement, and have been supported, both tacitly and overtly, by the Congress, and the Courts, who have completely ignored any and all challenges to those actions….

The above statement, by Goerring, comes up on my computer screen at times, as part of the slide show I use as a background for the desktop…. Almost every time I see it, I am reminded of not only the World Wars, and the Korean War, but of all the “non-wars” that this country has been forced to become involved in since 1953 or 54, after Korea had stabilized into its modern format. In the intervening 60 years, all but two American Presidents have engaged in some kind of clandestine warfare, complete with deployment of troops, weapons, and ideology, forcing that ideology on some other part of the world, and justifying it by saying that we, the American people, were under attack by someone, or something….

“The oldest and strongest emotion of mankind is fear, and the oldest and strongest kind of fear is fear of the unknown.” — H.P. Lovecraft, ‘Supernatural Horror in Literature’

“Creeping Communism” was what they were afraid of back then, when I was a kid, but, the people who need to have a war going to maintain their bottom line (I’ve previously called them the shadowy corporate masters…. Goerring just called them the leaders of the nation…) have sought, and found, any number of other targets for their accusations, pointing their panicked fingers at whomever they had on tap for their vitriol….

Mao Ze Dong, Ho Chi Minh, Fidel Castro, Kruschev, Che Guevara, Al Qaeda, Hussein, Khomeini, Qaddafi, bin Laden, all these, and/or whatever ideological fantasy they wished to cook up, all have been rotated through the public’s consciousness as the various villains of the moment, as the one’s I’ve labeled the Asininnies continue to use them, to direct the fears of the populace, so they can continue to sell arms, spy on everything and everybody without constraint, and, in truth, play their silly-ass game of Risk with the entire world….

Guess who loses at that game? Yep…. you, and me, and all of them, too….

Given the morning I’ve had thus far, I’m astounded I was able to rant at all, much less coherently…. but, there it is…. I hope it helps you enjoy your bagel this morning…. I know it isn’t cream cheese, but, it’s corny, it’s got some juice, and it’s fresh, so….

“Woe unto them that call evil good, and good evil.” — Old Testament — Isaiah v, 20
_____________________________

A three-fer, from a twentieth century societal poet, a brilliant man, with too much heart for the world….

“For those who believe in God, most of the big questions are answered. But for those of us who can’t readily accept the God formula, the big answers don’t remain stone-written. We adjust to new conditions and discoveries. We are pliable. Love need not be a command or faith a dictum. I am my own God.
We are here to unlearn the teachings of the church, state, and our educational system. We are here to drink beer. We are here to kill war. We are here to laugh at the odds and live our lives so well that Death will tremble to take us.” — Charles Bukowski

Nirvana

not much chance,

~~ Charles Bukowski ~~

Pull A String, A Puppet Moves

each man must realize
that it can all disappear very
quickly:
the cat, the woman, the job,
the front tire,
the bed, the walls, the
room; all our necessities
including love,
rest on foundations of sand –
and any given cause,
no matter how unrelated:
the death of a boy in Hong Kong
or a blizzard in Omaha …
can serve as your undoing.
all your chinaware crashing to the
kitchen floor, your girl will enter
and you’ll be standing, drunk,
in the center of it and she’ll ask:
my god, what’s the matter?
and you’ll answer: I don’t know,
I don’t know …

~~ Charles Bukowski ~~

_____________________________

I’ve reached this section with a finite amount of time to finish this Pearl before the outside world intrudes…. so, this will be (should be) a quick, random harlequin pearl, old school variety, and I hope it works….

“You did then what you knew how to do. When you knew better, you did better. You are spirit who did what you had to do, but you are not that thing.” — Maya Angelou

“Fear is not in the habit of speaking truth.  When perfect sincerity is expected, perfect freedom must be allowed;  nor has anyone who is apt to be angry when he hears the truth, any cause to wonder that he does not hear it.” — Tacitus

“There are no dangerous thoughts; thinking itself is dangerous.” — Hannah Arendt

“If there is happiness on earth, it must be sought in the abode where we live.” — Jean-Jacques Rousseau (1712-1778) French Philosopher

“At present there are such goings-on that everything is at a standstill.” — Sir Boyle Roche

REALITY, n.  The dream of a mad philosopher.  That which would remain in the cupel if one should assay a phantom.  The nucleus of a vacuum. — Ambrose Bierce, “The Devil’s Dictionary”

“..  Now I think I just reached the state of HYPERTENSION that comes JUST BEFORE you see the TOTAL at the SAFEWAY CHECKOUT COUNTER!” — Zippy the Pinhead
_____________________________

In posting this Pearl, I acknowledge my own culpability, except to say, the standards usually applied herein were completely absent today, so, use caution in using any of this as either true wisdom, or actual entertainment beyond the 3rd grade level…. Other than that, I think we’re good to go, typos and all…. See ya….

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,
and sometimes
I just sits.

gigoid

dozer3