Basted with unflavored dirt….

Ffolkes,

“The beginning of knowledge is the discovery of something we do not understand.”

~~ Frank Herbert ~~

ketchikan-side-street

Side street, Ketchikan, Alaska….

Hajime…. As the chosen companion of a Siamese-Calico magicat, the Law of Bastet requires from me a certain amount of time each day, to be spent in the guise of a cat hammock, prepared to hold and stroke my companion into a bliss of contentment. Moreover, it must be supplied at the times she chooses, no matter what important, or even critical event may be transpiring in my life. As might be expected, this can create some interesting moments, to say the least…..

Good morning, ffolkes. The opening remarks, which came to me as I gazed in mild apprehension at the blank screen this morning, seem appropriate, if I can manage to leave them as they are, sans further remarks that could be construed as objections on my part; far from being resentful, I am thankful for having been chosen, even though dealing with her individuality often makes me crazy… ( I suppose ‘crazier’ would be more accurate….). There is no doubt whatsoever Leelu looks to me as her boon companion, for she makes it clear; she always wants to be close by, often following me from room to room, & settling nearby to watch whatever activity I am pursuing. As I type this, she is lying on the table, just to my right, by the computer, with her head resting on the mouse pad….

While I’m sure most of y’all appreciate the break from my usual nonsense, it’s probably best to get on with the rest of today’s show, while Leelu is resting between bouts of paper killing, and I have a chance to finish without interference. Let’s do that in the most efficient manner we have, which looks much like this….

Shall we Pearl?….

“All religions are founded on the fear of the many and the cleverness of the few.”

~~ Stendhal ~~

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betty-boop-1934

Who doesn’t love Betty? I suppose there could be a few prudish fundies who can’t find it within themselves to appreciate her degree of innocence, or her boundless love of people. But, then, I guess that’s THEIR problem, isn’t it? Yep. For me, I’ll just enjoy this blast from the past….

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Betty Boop

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Comedy_Tragedy

Beyond Agapé

Passion burns and shines like iridescent paint
yet solitude stands mocking such mundane complaint.
Schemes and dreams promise to tempt attraction
never ending effort spends wit in perverse reaction.

Hale and hearty reports of honor and love
draft recruits to collect manna from above,
while searching each soul for that which will serve
to bring pure sensation to each expectant nerve.

How simple to fall into complete helpless hope
of two hearts bound in tradition, with cultural rope,
living a simple life, shared, in joy and in grief
promises consummated, in consensual belief.

Reality dictates our degree of control over its state
insisting on changing whether or not we can wait.
Love will be present when we are completely at peace,
allowing ourselves, to give of ourselves, without cease.

~~ gigoid ~~

10/4/2012

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pearls_3

Naked Pearls

How to judge a book with no cover….

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“Reality is that part of imagination we all agree on.”

~~ Sagacious Bee ~~

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“The truth of a proposition has nothing to do with its credibility.
And vice-versa.”

~~ Lazarus Long ~~

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“Every one is bound to bear patiently the results of his own example.”

~~ Phaedrus (c. 8 A.D.) — Book i, Fable 26, 12 ~~

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“I had to face my fear. That was more important than just going on living.”

~~ Jon Pertwee’s Doctor, PLANET OF THE SPIDERS ~~

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“To be alive is to take risks; to be always safe and secure is death.”

~~ Edward Abbey ~~

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“Actions don’t always speak louder than words, but they tell fewer lies.”

~~ Wise Bee ~~

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“To me, boxing is like a ballet,
except there’s no music,
no choreography,
and the dancers hit each other.”

~~ Deep Thoughts, by Jack Handey ~~

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Today’s Pearl has been brought to you through the auspices of sheer will power, combined with a modicum of angst to give it some flavor. In addition, it’s done, which means I can put aside any further dreams of a Pulitzer, & go fix some oatmeal for breakfast. Needs must, Mr. Wyndigate, needs must. As for y’all, I hope you had a good time stuffing turkey, whether into your mouth, or the recycle bin. Next stop, Christmas. For now, though, we’ll just say, see ya tomorrow, ffolkes….. ready or not…..

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

The *only* duly authorized Computer Curmudgeon.

PLEASE STOP READING THIS MESSAGE NOW.

“SCRAM!!!!!!!!!!”- Oscar the Grouch

Featured Image -- 10691

À bientôt, mon cherí….

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Wobbling in illegal pants….

Ffolkes,

A man who has faith must be prepared
not only to be a martyr, but to be a fool.

~~ G. K. Chesterton,  “Heretics”, 1905 ~~

Ireland 021

Sez who?

Irish Gull w/attitude, Galway


Hajime…. This morning, it isn’t morning. Well, actually, it is, when you will see this, in my time zone, anyway. The time in your own may well be different, but, for convenience, we’ll go with morning. Especially since it’s actually yesterday, and you’re reading this courtesy the power of the Tardis, which delivered it to this time, per instructions, sometime in either the past, or the future; I have a hard time deciphering that manual page. All I know is, the post will end up in the right place, at the right time, just as if the Doctor himself were in the house, and, at the controls.

Now we’ve begun the day appropriately, with a fair bit of nonsense and fantasy, why don’t we try something more, oh, cerebral? Hmm… perhaps that isn’t the best idea…. I think, as Calvin once remarked, my cerebellum just fused, when confronted with an arithmetic conundrum from his teacher. So, yep, cerebral is out. How about a bit of comedy? Ah, I see. The obvious attempts already made have turned y’all a bit green; maybe I should open this window over here…. Oops. Forgot, pressurized cabins shouldn’t be opened in flight. Better not. Last time I forgot, half the seats went flying out in the suction, with Gentle Readers still attached….

Okay, I’ll stop. It must be too early for this sort of playfulness; perhaps it’s from not having my third cuppa until AFTER I got up. But, it could be the shoes. We’ll never know now, because I’m making an executive decision, and getting us all the hell out of here, before I hurt myself, or anybody else, in my thrashing about…. Actually, that’s the easy part; this part is harder than it looks….. Watch this….

Shall we Pearl?….

“Accurate reckoning — the entrance
into the knowledge of all existing things
and all obscure secrets.”

~~ Ahmes the Scribe (17th cent. B.C.) ~~


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young donovan

Young Donovan Leitch

Image from Pinterest.com via Google Images


Donovan Leitch, who performed using his given name only, was, in many ways, the most influential musician of his era. A legendary songwriter, excellent guitarist/musician, and, a model of the ideals by which my generation had become enamored during the famous/infamous 60’s. He influenced me, and many others of my age, to embrace openness, honesty to self and others, and, the concept of humanity as a whole living together in love and peace. It’s idealistic, and romantic, and, it’s still represents a way of living with which I can find no argument as having value…..

This video is of a live show from 2012, after he finally was elected to the R&R Hall of Fame…. The sound quality isn’t the best, and, his voice isn’t quite as strong as it once was, but, you can always go listen to one of the albums to hear that….. You gotta love this man, for he has shared all his love with the world, in his music…. Enjoy, ffolkes…. I will, for sure, and, why not?…. What’s not to like, eh?….

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Donovan

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buddah-out-to-lunch_s

    While searching through the archives yesterday, looking for something else entirely, I came across this piece, from almost three years ago. It made me laugh, so, rather than ranting about shit, again, which I can’t currently change, I’ll subject y’all to some sarcasm/sardonicism re: our old friends, the Dogma Dogs, and be done with it…. I’ve changed the formatting a bit, to match my current style, and, corrected a couple grammatical errors I found. I hope you enjoy it; I did, writing it, and, reading it again….. But, then, perhaps I’m prejudiced in the matter….

From 1/30/3013:

“Theology is never any help;
it is searching in a dark cellar at midnight
for a black cat that isn’t there.
Theologians can persuade themselves of anything.”

~~ Robert A. Heinlein ~~


I had an idea, but it went away…. They do that sometimes. The idea was connected somehow to this quote from Bob Heinlein, and, as might be expected, was intended to serve as the springboard for yet another episode of raking Christianity, and/or religious institutions in general, over the proverbial coals. Since the clever concept I had thought of originally has deserted me, I have absolutely no idea of where to go with this…. I mean, it’s a simple enough matter to turn it into a rant; I have no problem coming up with a newly sharpened stick to poke at the priesthood whenever needed, or merely wished for. But, having bellied up to that bar already this week, I hadn’t intended to go there…. Let’s see what happens now….

“And on the seventh day, while He was resting, He created snack cakes.  And He saw that they looked good, and He did bite into one, at which time he realized that they tasted like something that had been sitting on a shelf wrapped in cheap plastic for decades.  He had too much goop on His fingers to blast them into the void from which they had come, and therefore He drove them out until they had left the Promised Land and were stuck in a cheap, tacky display on the end of the aisle.” — Haagendasz 3, 12-15


While I am firmly convinced that this makes as much sense to me as it does to read in the Bible from, oh, say, the Book of Leviticus, or even Genesis, I am not sure it will make a proper ranting platform. I mean, it IS as easily proved as any of the real stuff in the Bible, and certainly holds the same amount of logic to its assertions. But, somehow, it just isn’t SERIOUS enough to soothe the ranting urge… No, we’ll just have to keep looking….

“One would like to stroke and caress human beings,
but one dares not do so,
because they bite.”

~~ Vladimir Lenin ~~


Ah, now THAT is a sentiment I can get behind. It shows deep insight into human nature, and in a small way, says something about how that nature is self-destructive. A fine little aphorism, but, not really suited for ranting, as it is so true and complete in itself….. We’ll keep looking….

“Forgive us, for we know not what we do.
Not that we CARE or anything.”

~~ Smart Bee ~~


Aha! Now, that’s the kind of pearl that can start off a grand rant! It’s a perfect perversion of the Christian insistence on keeping their believers buried deeply in ignorance and fear, and ironic enough to please the most discriminating of critics. I love the ending line; it’s just so….. Christian! At least, by every measure I’ve ever seen, it is…. Now, there are Christians out there, I’m certain, who will take some offense at that, but, I would ask them to stop a moment and think…. There, there, now, darlings, I know it hurts, but it will get better the more you do it….

“All religions are founded on the fear of the many
and the cleverness of the few.”

~~ Stendhal ~~


See? I don’t discriminate!…. Now that your mind is loosened up a bit, so you won’t strain it, consider this…. In the Christian world, once one has been granted admittance to the group, becoming a member of the Church, how much effort do those members make to become better people? How much do they actually use the precepts of their dogma to influence their behavior BEFORE they act? How many of them actually try to weave the teachings of Jesus into the fabric of their lives?…. My own observations tell me the number is pretty small, compared to the whole…..

Christians make a big fuss about making sure it is understood how compassionate and forgiving Jesus is/was, as he meant for all his followers to be; then they go and drop bombs on a bunch of short brown people, because those people aren’t Christian…. Oh, the stories and fantasies given in justification always point to some other reason, but the bottom line is, because those other people are “heathens”, they aren’t entitled to any of that compassion or forgiveness. Only their co-members are entitled to consideration as something other than dirt…..

What often makes me the angriest, when I see this behavior, is the outrage expressed by those self-appointed Chosen Ones when their entitlement is challenged, in pieces such as this one. The entire weight of the Church is often called into play to respond to any criticisms leveled against it in public, much like a dragon protects its stolen gold, reacting with fire and destruction to any perceived threats. It pisses me off because their manipulation of others, and their stated wish to be of service, is all based on LIES and hypocrisy, delivered with a smarmy smile that just says to me, “Snake!”, and makes me want to look around for a shovel to pound it with….

If an article in a newspaper that is critical of the Church is widely read, there will be, guaranteed, a fire-storm of heated responses from the Church’s mouthpieces, all heaping abuse, and accusations of discrimination against the critics. The making of such accusations is the typical, almost knee-jerk response of the Church whenever it is called to task for its shortcomings; they learned long ago that the best way to distract the membership from the truth of any criticisms is to make their own false accusations in return, but louder, and for a longer time…. They know that any lie, repeated loudly and repeatedly, will be accepted as truth, especially by their members, who are already predisposed (read: brainwashed…) to believe whatever the preachers/priests tell them….

“Ignorance can be compounded, made denser,
until the light of our spirits is smothered.”

~~– Deng Ming-Dao ~~


I’ve given up arguing with the faithful; it’s a pastime that is endlessly amusing, but, ultimately, saddening. Kind of like the frustration of wrestling with a pig; you just get dirty, and the pig likes it….. It is hard for me to watch people continually make the choice to be ignorant, to be cowards, afraid to face the universe on its own terms: it is even more frustrating to see them consistently tell others what they should think, and how they should live, based solely on their own standards.

Trying to get most folks to see reason is much like banging one’s forehead against a brick wall…. not terribly amusing, and the blood is hard on one’s clothing, as well as the insult to the forehead….. Since I’m not a fool, I have ceased trying to get them to see beyond their own misapprehensions, and just use what I see as fodder for these posts….. Less frustrating, to be sure, if no less depressing….

I seem to have ranted myself into a corner again; I don’t see a way to continue this without becoming either vitriolic, or boring (some might say “more” boring…. all I can say to them is “thptttttt!”….); I’d guess it’s probably too late to avoid being rude. Since there is still some ways to go before we can call it a day, I think I’ll close this off, and go in search of an appropriate poem for the day…. As a final word of caution and warning, in the unending struggle against ignorance, let me leave you with these….

“If all mankind minus one were of one opinion,
mankind would be no more justified
in silencing that one person than he,
if he had the power,
would be justified in silencing mankind.”

~~ John Stuart Mill ~~

“All a man can betray is his conscience.”

~~ Joseph Conrad ~~


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Comedy_Tragedy

Funny Bones

Dreaming the way home, lost, unseen,
from the dance, where
he felt so free, and clean.
Sorrow couldn’t find him there.

Waiting, filling up the hours, hoping,
some connection can be found
keeping busy as bees, coping.
Love creeps in, without a sound.

Fat days, skinny nights, passionate
visions of semi-conscious entities,
cannot seem to fully illuminate
or hide our innermost frailties.

Resolute, find the perfect sense, codify
simple rules with every breath
never waiting, anxious to modify.
fear nothing in life, not even Death.

~~ gigoid ~~

5/13/2013


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pearls_3

Naked Pearls

Pooh and the Buddha Nature

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“When you are a Bear of Very Little Brain,
and you Think of Things,
you find sometimes that a Thing
which seemed very Thingish inside you
is quite different when it gets out into the open
and has other people looking at it.”

~~ A.A. Milne, The House at Pooh Corner ~~

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“They are too green,” he said,
“and only good for fools.”

~~ J. de La Fontaine ~~
~~ The Fox and the Grapes, Book iii, Fable 11 ~~

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Our characters are the result of our conduct.

~~ Aristotle ~~

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“Virtue is but heroic bravery,
to do the thing thought to be true,
in spite of all enemies of flesh or spirit,
in despite of all temptations or menaces.”

~~ Albert Pike (1809-1891) ~~

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“If we attend continually and promptly
to the little that we can do,
we shall ere long be surprised
to find how little remains that we cannot do.”

~~ Samuel Butler ~~

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A gentleman does things no gentleman should do
in a way only a gentleman can.”

~~ Luigi Barzini ~~

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Cogito cogito ergo cogito sum:
“I think that I think,
therefore I think that I am.”

~~ Ambrose Bierce, “The Devil’s Dictionary” ~~

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When Po-chang was asked about seeking for the Buddha nature:
“It’s much  like riding an ox in search of the ox”

~~ Zen koan from Po-chang ~~

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“In the dark time
will there also be singing?”
“Yes, there will be singing
about the dark time.”

~~ Bertolt Brecht ~~

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Done, and, in Tardis time. Funny how that works…. Rather than prattle any further, I’ll play nice, & simply bid thee adieu, until another day, most likely tomorrow, given a fair wind and a rising tide…. See y’all then, fer sure…

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

The *only* duly authorized Computer Curmudgeon.

PLEASE STOP READING THIS MESSAGE NOW.

“SCRAM!!!!!!!!!!”- Oscar the Grouch

Kowabunga!


À bientôt, mon cherí….


One of the new Innuendo Class ships…..

Ffolkes,

Knew I not better, it would be my guess Murphy is in cahoots with Mother Nature; how else to explain such weather? Unless, of course, one wishes to believe the global warming theories, which, based as they are on scientific principles, and the collection of accurate data, don’t stand a tinker’s chance against the ignorant denial which so many of our democratic brethren bring to bear upon the issue….. Nope, one American idiot can put serious hurt to all of the ideas so presented, especially as so many of them are elected members of our national congress (of crows?…. Well, they do both sound alike, and both make as much obscene noise as any sane person can tolerate…)….

Once again, it seems the urge to rant grabbed me before I had a chance to stop it, or to throw a password on the keyboard…. That’s the only explanation I can give for the above opening paragraph…. Dry, stilted, poorly judged attempts at humor, with barely enough vitriol to annoy a congressional aide, much less a Senator, all of whom are practiced at not listening to what is said to them….

They’re special, you know, and aren’t required to waste their precious time listening to what peons may think…. even if those peons elected them. They know, or believe, anyway, that the fools who elected them the first time will continue to pull the wool over their own eyes, thus perpetuating the entire mess for yet another elective cycle….

“If you get somebody to give you a dollar, they’ll vote for you for the rest of their lives.” — Hugh Parmer, Democratic candidate for the 1990 U.S. Senate, from Texas

Wow…. I must have let my angst build up for too long…. I’m having a hard time getting through a single paragraph without falling right back into ranting mode… This is going to make it tough to get very far…. I do enjoy the ranting process as it manifests in me, mostly, but, it can be a trifle disconcerting to anyone watching it happen from the outside…. not to mention the degree of splash that makes it such a messy modus operandi…. But, since I’m a guy, messes are second nature, and that part of it has always been a snap….

Of course, one must also maintain a certain degree of clinical objectivity to rant; if I want to do a decent job of tearing down our leaders, I can’t afford to have sympathy for them, now, can I? No, of course not; that would be counter-productive, to say the least, not to mention the confusion it could cause for them…. the congresspersons, I mean….

Wait a minute…. confusion, congress…. hmm…. actually, it sounds as if ranting at them, in the final analysis, may be the best thing we can do for them, as it allows them to indulge themselves in their favorite, most natural state, i.e., deep confusion, and paralyzing ignorance, without any feelings of inadequacy, due to our lambasting of their integrity, their honesty, and their very nature, which is ugly, ugly, ugly….

Or, it that just Paul Ryan? It sounds like him….

Oops, did I just get personal? Oh my…. I’m ashamed of myself….. NOT! Ha! Oh well, just consider that my opening shot for the 2016 presidential election, an event of significant importance for all of us in the modern world, and not only in THIS country…. It is also an event of note for humanity as a species, one I predict may just be, barely, a precursor to the upcoming revolution….

Oh, no, I’m not referring the one the people of the world will be having sometime soon…. No, I’m talking about the one Mother Nature has in store for us, sometime in the next 100 years or so, when the atmosphere we breathe changes, becoming increasingly toxic to us…… It’s all of a piece, you know…. everything is connected, and what happens in the upcoming years leading up to the election will play a big part in how the next few years unfold out in the real world….

Okay, I think I’ve rambled and blathered long enough on this, or any subject…. As a rant, the above falls way short of the usual sort; in fact, it’s rather broken up, without any real organization, which always tends to devalue the effect it may have on a reader…. That’s what happens, when I allow such vituperation and angst to show in the intro, without any attempt to turn it into something useful…. I guess it’s all of a piece today…. In fact, it’s a pretty fair picture of just how confused I am this morning…. I’m surprised I’ve been able to get this far….. Typing on autopilot, I guess…

Since this isn’t going anywhere particularly valuable, or attractive, we’ll abandon all hope of saving any of it, and just get on with the rest of today’s effort…. That, actually, will probably be for the best, as this is going nowhere, fast….

Shall we Pearl?…..

“Your face, my thane, is as a book where men
May read strange matters.
To beguile the time,
Look like the time; bear welcome in your eye,
Your hand, your tongue: look like the innocent flower,
But be the serpent under ‘t.”

— William Shakespeare (1564-1616), Macbeth — Act i, Sc. 5

Lately, Will’s quotes have been fitting in nicely with my themes…. He was so damn prolific a writer, SOME of what he wrote HAD to come out okay, though I’m still of the opinion that most of what he wrote is way over-rated…. This, however, is a perfect set of lines to go with my shot at our newest Republican presidential hopeful, Paul “I’m just a regular asshole” Ryan…. and I didn’t have to pay the million monkeys for it!…..

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As I noted above, I’m a bit disorganized this morning; I’m so discombobulated (what a great word!….) (…. and such a perfect description of how I’m feeling!….), that I’m forced into the archives for self-protection…. But, I’ll be nice, and give you this, which is a discussion of the concept of forgiveness…. First posted on 12/31/2012, this one is pretty good, so, pay attention, please…..

🙂

Forgiveness. How does a person without faith in a higher power obtain this boon? Certainly not from themselves…. I know, if I have done something for which I feel the need, or desire, to be forgiven, then I most likely don’t deserve it, and refuse to give in to self-indulgence.

According to the preachers, God forgives all, but damn me if I can see any reason to do so, no matter how ‘merciful’ he/she/it might be. How can anyone expect moral behavior, if even our most grievous sins are forgiven? Because of the promise of reward for compliance, or threat of punishment for refusal to conform? I agree with Albert Einstein, that any such philosophy is not realistic, and certainly not moral…..

“In his private heart no man much respects himself.” — Mark Twain

All of us, without exception, have things we hide inside ourselves, secrets that nobody else will ever be told. Whether it is a memory of an act one is not proud of, or a bit of severe foolishness, or something so shameful that to share it would be to become a pariah, all of us humans have secrets. I would guess that almost all of them are akin to what is described in the first paragraph, to wit: acts that want, or request forgiveness, but do not deserve it.

I believe that this may be a method by which one can tell another person’s outlook on religion, for almost all religions are based on this principle, of divine forgiveness. Even though we may do things in life that are unforgivable, the gods, or God, for the monotheistic among us, are so merciful, that they will do so, if you but acknowledge their divinity, and admit they are your higher power…..

It’s a good deal, all in all, if one buys it. Myself, I’m a bit sanguine about it, since I only have the word of the preachers that it is so; there is no real evidence to be found that supports the theory, and the scientist in me wants at least a little bit of proof before accepting something as truth. I’m not going to buy anything just on someone else’s word, or assertion of truth; I’ve been alive long enough to know that doing things like that can only lead to losing something, if only the advantage of self-respect.

“His ignorance covers the world like a blanket, and there’s scarcely a hole in it anywhere.” — Mark Twain

Wait, I thought we were talking about religion, not the last Republican President, Shrub, the Junior….. Sorry, couldn’t resist…. Any who, it all comes back to the basic idea of how we view reality, in terms of the concept of God, or a power greater than ourselves, that is responsible somehow for everything that exists, and thus, for us. By giving away that responsibility, I think, we are showing our own cowardice; I’m not willing to do that, not without more compelling evidence than hearsay.

I’m not blind to the other evidence that many religionists claim as being proof of God and his will; I’ve burst into tears myself at the sight of a particularly vivid sunrise, without knowing why, other than the beauty of it was so arrestingly powerful. I’ve seen good things happen everywhere, in human interaction, and in Nature. I’ve witnessed what priests like to call “grace”, and will admit that such events are not always explainable by ordinary means.

I’ve also witnessed the other side of existence, where human nature turns dark and cruel, while Nature reveals its own complete indifference for human suffering, and cannot accept that the same entity would dare to assume, or want responsibility for such a wicked universe, even if the balance of good and evil is maintained by the presence of the other.

That assumption is purely human, and thus does not qualify, in my mind, as evidence of divinity in the form of God, by any of the visions held by any of the churches of Mankind. Unless, of course, one goes beyond doctrine, into philosophy, where the above contradictions do not apply, or can be explained by one further assumption. That assumption is a hard one for most humans, as it involves taking responsibility for EVERYTHING that they do, and for everything that happens to them. (Yep, that’s a paraphrase of the basic principle of Karma…)

In other words, as Robert Heinlein put it so aptly in Stranger In a Strange Land, “Thou art God.”  I know, it’s blasphemous, but, hey, been there, done that, let’s get past it…. It is the only explanation that fits ALL the facts in evidence, and even if a bit grandiose, really isn’t, because we are, after all, just a bunch of bozos on the bus.

Being God, though, would be a really boring job, the way the job descriptions in all the churches read, and I don’t think I want to take that on, particularly. It may be the only way I can find any forgiveness for those things I’ve done in my long life of which I am not proud, but, since I don’t feel that I SHOULD be forgiven for them, I think I’ll just accept the responsibility, along with the consequence, a certain lessening of my self-esteem, and try to act in the future in ways that won’t make me feel that way….

It really isn’t hard to be good, in reality, as long as you care…. The problem is, not enough people care, or even think about stuff like this….. Me, I can’t help myself…… Caring, to me, is what being human is about; those who don’t care aren’t fully human, and won’t be until they do…..

“I am covered with pure vegetable oil and I am writing a best seller!”  — Zippy the Pinhead

Note from the future: I don’t know about the best seller, but I kind of like the vegetable oil concept….. what do you think?…. Actually, I think it would be best if we just go on to the next section….

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Today certainly resembles a dream, which I am desperately struggling to keep from becoming a nightmare…. In hope of helping with that, here is a classic poem from a classic poet…. a bit of a dreamer, was Poe, but, elegantly so…..

A Dream Within A Dream

Take this kiss upon the brow!
And, in parting from you now,
Thus much let me avow-
You are not wrong, who deem
That my days have been a dream;
Yet if hope has flown away
In a night, or in a day,
In a vision, or in none,
Is it therefore the less gone?
All that we see or seem
Is but a dream within a dream.

I stand amid the roar
Of a surf-tormented shore,
And I hold within my hand
Grains of the golden sand-
How few! yet how they creep
Through my fingers to the deep,
While I weep- while I weep!
O God! can I not grasp
Them with a tighter clasp?
O God! can I not save
One from the pitiless wave?
Is all that we see or seem
But a dream within a dream?

~~ Edgar Allan Poe ~~

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Aha! Made it!….. There were moments today when I wasn’t sure I would get this far; it’s been touch and go ever since I first got up….. That’s all good, now, so I can relax, and enjoy the process here in section three, where we find ourselves in preparation for a dive to find today’s old-school variety pearl…. I’m pretty sure that if I dared to set any strict parameters, the whole damn thing would probably explode, in a fireball much resembling the Big Bang, from a couple of billion years ago…..

Far be it from me to take chances with the lives of my Gentle Readers….. plus, who needs a new Big Bang? We haven’t yet figured out what to do about the first one, so another would just be more than we can deal with…. So, I’ll go for a nice, refreshing dive, to see what SB has for us today….

Man, in the unsearchable darkness, knoweth one thing
That as he is, so was he made; and if the Essence
And characteristic faculty of humanity
Is our conscient Reason and our desire of knowledge
That was Nature’s Purpose in the making of man.

— Robert Bridges

“I learned long ago, never to wrestle with a pig. You get dirty, and besides, the pig likes it.” — George Bernard Shaw

“A politician has to be able to see both sides of an issue, so he can get around it.” — Smart Bee

“All religions are founded on the fear of the many and the cleverness of the few.” — Stendhal

The villa’s and the chapel’s where
I learned with little labor
The way to love my fellow man
And hate my next-door neighbor.

— Gilbert K. Chesterton (1874-1936)

“It is not every question that deserves an answer.” — Publius Syrus (42 BC) — Maxim 581

“If our behavior is strict, we do not need fun!” — Zippy the Pinhead

When I began putting together pearls of virtual wisdom, I had no idea the process itself would become as critical as the end result; I suppose that was naive of me, as almost everything in life obeys that rule, to wit: The journey is more important than the destination…. In today’s case, that rule has been proven yet again…. Enjoy, ffolkes, this one is a good one…..

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Today’s Pearl has been brought to you by the letter D, and the number 42, for better or for worse…. No metaphors were harmed in the production of this blog, though we tried our hardest…. All is serene on the home front, so, I’ll be taking this show on the road now, again, for better, or for worse…. I’ll see you tomorrow, unless, of course, you see me first…. Dosvedanya, gospodin…. I THINK I spelled that right….

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 the dubious

dozer3

A witch, a stitch, and three cracked cups….

Ffolkes,
“O frabjous day! Oh, joy! I am filled with exuberant good will! Come, join me in greeting this fabulous new day!……”

There…. we’ll see how that works….. I thought I’d try something a bit new and different today, since I’ve been complaining to myself so much about the intro section. These words, stolen piecemeal from a Dorothy L. Sayers novel, coupled with a bit of doggerel that was laying about in me head, have but one purpose, and that is to distract and confuse Murphy long enough for me to at least get started on this Pearl. I don’t know how it will work, but maybe if he sees that I’m already up, started writing, and in a good mood, he could get a bit discombobulated by my apparent cheerfulness. Just about anything is worth a shot, if it means less hassle from him in the long run…..

Gosh, it’s quiet…. I didn’t realize just how much ambient noise it adds to the background to have Murphy and the boys hanging about all the time. It’s so quiet I could hear myself thinking, a distinctly new feeling. So new, in fact, I don’t know how to deal with it, precisely. I feel kind of guilty at disturbing the peace; there is so little of it around here most of the time, it’s rather pleasant to not have the clamor and bustle ringing around my ears. It’s almost soothing…. and boring as hell. This calls for some music, I think….

Ah yes, you can’t beat Bonnie Raitt, for a bit of atmosphere and stimulation. Slick slide and blues guitar, gutsy, crystalline voice, red hair, and a beautiful smile…. Ah me, I’ve been lost in love for her for close to 40 years or more. When she lets her voice soar, such as in the song “Angel from Montgomery”, it sends chills up and down my spine, and there is nobody who can rip out your heart any faster than when she sings a song such as, “I Can’t Make You Love Me”…… Every time I hear it, I want to fall on my knees before her, and cry out “You don’t HAVE to MAKE me love you! I am yours forever!” Alas, she never hears me, and my fantasy fades again….

So much for unrequited love…. As we all do, I lived through my loss, and have come through the other side relatively unscathed by the hammer of love lost, or more accurately, love never found (a slight, but important distinction). It’s a hard loss, for sure, but, hey, I’ve always got her music to get me by….. A little time, one of her CD’s, a bottle of Jack, and the pain will eventually pass away, as it does in Time….. Of course, it all rushes back in, twice as bad, the next morning, along with the hangover, but, there is always a price for our healing….

Well, once again, I’ve managed to get through another intro section without really saying much of anything, at least nothing that could be construed as either significant, or even interesting. What can I say, it’s a gift…. Now that you have unwittingly fallen right into my trap, and consumed four and a half paragraphs of pseudo-literature before you even realized you were caught, we can get on with the normal (got to stop using that word!….It really doesn’t apply….) business of the day, for what it’s worth….. Shall we Pearl?…..
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“Theology is never any help; it is searching in a dark cellar at midnight for a black cat that isn’t there. Theologians can persuade themselves of anything.” — Robert A. Heinlein

I had an idea, but it went away…. They do that sometimes. The idea was connected somehow to this quote from Bob Heinlein, and, as might be expected, was intended to serve as the springboard for yet another episode of raking Christianity, and religious institutions in general, over the coals. Since the clever concept I originally had has deserted me, I have absolutely no idea of where to go with this…. I mean, it’s a simple enough matter to turn it into a rant; I have no problem coming up with a newly sharpened stick to poke at the priesthood whenever needed, or merely wished for. But, having bellied up to that bar already this week, I hadn’t intended to go there…. Let’s see what happens now….

“And on the seventh day, while He was resting, He created snack cakes.  And He saw that they looked good, and He did bite into one, at which time he realized that they tasted like something that had been sitting on a shelf wrapped in cheap plastic for decades.  He had too much goop on His fingers to blast them into the void from which they had come, and therefore He drove them out until they had left the Promised Land and were stuck in a cheap, tacky display on the end of the aisle.” — Haagendasz 3, 12-15

While I am firmly convinced that this makes as much sense to me as it does to read in the Bible from, oh, say, the Book of Leviticus, or even Genesis, I am not sure it will make a proper ranting platform. I mean, it IS as easily proved as any of the real stuff in the Bible, and certainly holds the same amount of logic to its assertions. But, somehow, it just isn’t SERIOUS enough to soothe the ranting urge… No, we’ll just have to keep looking….

“One would like to stroke and caress human beings, but one dares not do so, because they bite.” — Vladimir Lenin

Ah, now THAT is a sentiment I can get behind. It shows deep insight into human nature, and in a small way, says something about how that nature is self-destructive. A fine little aphorism, but, not really suited for ranting, as it is so true and complete in itself….. We’ll keep looking….

“Forgive us, for we know not what we do.  Not that we CARE or anything.” — Smart Bee

Aha! Now, that’s the kind of pearl that can start off a grand rant! It’s a perfect perversion of the Christian insistence on keeping their believers buried deeply in ignorance and fear, and ironic enough to please the most discriminating of critics. I love the ending line; it’s just so….. Christian! At least, by every measure I’ve ever seen, it is…. Now, there are Christians out there, I’m certain, who will take some offense at that, but, I would ask them to stop a moment and think…. There, there, now, darlings, I know it hurts, but it will get better the more you do it….

“All religions are founded on the fear of the many and the cleverness of the few.” — Stendahl

See? I don’t discriminate!…. Now that your mind is loosened up a bit, so you won’t strain it, consider this…. In the Christian world, once one has been granted admittance to the group, becoming a member of the Church, how much effort do those members make to become better people? How much do they actually use the precepts of their dogma to influence their behavior BEFORE they act? How many of them actually try to weave the teachings of Jesus into the fabric of their lives?…. My own observations tell me the number is pretty small, compared to the whole…..

Christians make a big fuss about making sure that it is understood how compassionate and forgiving Jesus is/was, and meant for all his followers to be; then they go and drop bombs on a bunch of short brown people, because those people aren’t Christian…. Oh, the stories and fantasies given in justification always point to some other reason, but the bottom line is, because those other people are “heathens”, they aren’t entitled to any of that compassion or forgiveness. Only their co-members are entitled to consideration as something other than dirt…..

What often makes me the angriest when I see this behavior is the outrage expressed by those self-appointed Chosen Ones when their entitlement is challenged in pieces such as this one. The entire weight of the Church is often called into play to respond to any criticisms leveled against it in public, much like a dragon protects its stolen gold, reacting with fire and destruction to any perceived threats. It pisses me off because their manipulation of others, and their stated wish to be of service, is all based on LIES and hypocrisy, delivered with a smarmy smile that just says to me, “Snake!”, and makes me want to look around for a shovel to pound it with….

If an article in a newspaper that is critical of the Church is widely read, there will be, guaranteed, a fire-storm of heated responses from the Church’s mouthpieces, all heaping abuse, and accusations of discrimination against the critics. The making of such accusations is the typical, almost knee-jerk response of the Church whenever it is called to task for its shortcomings; they learned long ago that the best way to distract the membership from the truth of any criticisms is to make their own false accusations in return, but louder, and for a longer time…. They know that any lie, repeated loudly and repeatedly, will be accepted as truth, especially by their members, who are already predisposed (read: brainwashed…) to believe whatever the preachers/priests tell them….

“Ignorance can be compounded, made denser, until the light of our spirits is smothered.” — Deng Ming-Dao

I’ve given up arguing with the faithful; it’s a pastime that is endlessly amusing, but ultimately saddening. Kind of like the frustration of wrestling with a pig; you just get dirty, and the pig likes it….. It is hard for me to watch people continually make the choice to be ignorant, to be cowards, afraid to face the universe on its own terms, always preferring to allow other people, with fewer scruples than they possess, tell them what they should think, and how they should live. Trying to get most folks to see reason is much like banging one’s forehead against a brick wall…. not terribly amusing, and the blood is hard on one’s clothing, as well as the insult to the forehead….. Since I’m not a fool, I have ceased trying to get them to see beyond their own misapprehensions, and just use what I see as fodder for these posts….. Less frustrating, to be sure, if no less depressing….

I seem to have ranted myself into a corner again; I don’t see a way to continue this without becoming either vitriolic, or boring (some might say “more” boring…. all I can say to them is “thptttttt!”….); I’d guess it’s probably too late to avoid being rude. Since there is still some ways to go before we can call it a day, I think I’ll close this off, and go in search of an appropriate poem for the day…. As a final word of caution and warning, in the unending struggle against ignorance, let me leave you with these….

“If all mankind minus one were of one opinion, mankind would be no more justified in silencing that one person than he, if he had the power, would be justified in silencing mankind.” — John Stuart Mill

“All a man can betray is his conscience.” — Joseph Conrad
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A Noiseless Patient Spider

A noiseless, patient spider,
I mark’d, where, on a little promontory, it stood, isolated;
Mark’d how, to explore the vacant, vast surrounding,
It launch’d forth filament, filament, filament, out of itself;
Ever unreeling them—ever tirelessly speeding them.

And you, O my Soul, where you stand,
Surrounded, surrounded, in measureless oceans of space,
Ceaselessly musing, venturing, throwing,—seeking the spheres, to connect them;
Till the bridge you will need, be form’d—till the ductile anchor hold;
Till the gossamer thread you fling, catch somewhere, O my Soul.

Walt Whitman
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“If the Nuremberg laws were applied, then every post-war American president would have been hanged.” — Noam Chomsky

Funny, isn’t it, how such statements, easily identified as being valid right up to the present day, are completely ignored by the mainstream public, and the media? I mean, it isn’t surprising that the politicians themselves would try to ignore this; that is, after all, their primary line of defense against criticism of any kind. But, it seems to me that the general public might be interested in at least seeing some of the evidence being used to justify the assertion, and that the media, as the ostensible responsible journalists they are supposed to be, would be all over that evidence to ascertain how much of it is valid. It isn’t an accusation that is made lightly, I think, and my own take on it is that it is perfectly true, given what I know of the Nuremberg Trials after WWII….

Now, this may seem like it is leading into another rant, this time on politics, and that would be a very astute observation…. usually. I’m a bit fagged out, though, having had quite a battle yesterday and last night with my back pain, which apparently is going to continue into today. I really do try not to let my pain keep me from doing what I want to do, but there are times when it just sort of ignores everything I want, and says, “Nope, here you go…. have some misery for a while….” It’s making it a bit difficult to think clearly, and to stay on track…

So, I’m going to switch horses right here in mid-stream, and turn this toward the old school…. Here are the pearls I could find this morning on the subject of our Beloved Ruling Class, bless their tiny little minds, and their tinier hearts…..

“”Beware the [lobbyist], my son, the jaws that bite, the claws that snatch” (with thanks to Lewis Carroll).  No matter how noble the cause or well meaning its professional advocates, lobbyists are still paid to get results.  They’re subject to errors in judgment, shortcomings in motives, and most of them don’t even vote in your district.” — Pierre S. du Pont

“I believe there are more instances of the abridgment of the rights of the people by the gradual & silent encroachments of those in power than by violent and sudden usurpations.” — James Madison, Virginia Convention, 1788

“Today’s public figures can no longer write their own speeches or books, and there is some evidence that they can’t read them either.” — Gore Vidal

“There are two main periods in which your elected representatives to the legislature do not do any business. One is before the election and the other is after the election.” — Smart Bee

It may have been the wrong decision to turn this over to my subconscious mind; the rant above took less time than finding that last pearl…. ah well, it finally got to the point where I can tie it all off with this, and wish you a safe and joyous day out there in the real world….

“Once harm has been done, even a fool understands it” — Homer
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Wow…. that turned into an epic, and somewhat of an ordeal. Let’s see how it came out, in toto…..  Hang on, be back in a few moments….  Not too bad, all in all… A bit of polish here, a bit of clarification there, and it’s good to go…. Well, it’s done, anyway. Y’all are the final judges of how it came out, so, I’ll turn it over to your tender ministrations…. be gentle with me, okay?…..  Y’all take care out there, and May the Metaphorse be with you…..


Sometimes I sits and thinks,
and sometimes
I just sits.

gigoid

dozer3