Sunday, November 30, 2008
I was never too interested in Philosophy or Theology.
My uncle says that Jesus died due to God's desire to experience Death, and understand it in a human way. From this, He is able to properly transcend the realm of Death and create life everlasting.
Black Beans and Chips
Arminians and Atonement
May 28, 2007
...there is a universal aspect to Arminian understanding of atonement in that the death of Christ set aside the guilt of original sin. However, the death of Christ provided possible salvation for all, but this is conditional on a person accepting it through repentance and faith.
He said that if there is guilt from original sin, from a non-personal past history which affects us, then the same thing applies to the future: a future guilt non-personal which we shall bear...even if we have passed on!
Since this is nonsense, he denies original sin as action, yet accepts it as a Symbolic structure, and thus it does have symbolic life, and thus, may influence all of creation, past, present, and future.
It is part of the Spirit, yet not part of the Material world.
He seems to consider the spirit and matter to be co-terminal: matter processes spirit and hence preceeds it logically;
spirit is the reason for matter's existence, and hence preceeds it logically, also.
Since Matter is that which processes Symbols, actions in the present may destroy the symbol of original sin, whether Christ dies to do so or not.
I do not pretend to understand this.
I only loyally copy what he tells me.
Saturday, November 29, 2008
The Market sets the price high enough to drive the less wealthy insane with consumer longing. Then goods are allocated efficiently by large, blood-thirsty riots.
I sense sarcasm.
My uncle tells us that human beings are not defined by their rationality, rather we are defined by our passions.
We come into life, we live life, and we exit life in a passion and rage of life; the Passion of Christ reflects our lives of passion, the Jihad of the Prophet is a mirror of our battles, the passage to Nirvana of the Lord Buddha follows our weary footsteps from despond to enlightenment.
Therefore, he says, anything that promotes love and understanding and well being is good, and hate and discord and suffering are decisively evil.
The suffering of 1 man or 1 woman or 1 child is reason enough for God's entire creation to be outraged.
Therefore, he says, an economy which cycles between surfeit and starvation cannot be good in God's eyes.
The "faith" in the autistic infallibility of self interest working in free markets is a faith built on sand. In our day, it has become very evident.
So he tells us today.
I record what he said. I am Aloysius, and the name may be derived from "loyalty".
I am a Mumbaikar: In Prayer and in Solidarity
I, too, am a Mumbaikar today.
...in prayer and in solidarity, I stand today with Mumbaikars everywhere. In shock at what has happened. In fear of what might happen yet. In anger at those who would be so calculated in their inhuman massacre. In sympathy with those whose pain so hurts my own heart but whose tears I cannot touch, whose wounds I cannot heal, and whose grief I cannot relieve...
Tuesday, November 25, 2008
I have been recruited to fill in the blanks, during his self-imposed exile. He will be writing, but only for himself. I do not write for myself, and I am not a writer, but I guess I can take up the slack here and there.
So, here goes:
During the congressional testimonies on whether Santa Industries should receive a government bail-out, a congressman asked whether Santa had flown to Washington by regular commercial airline.
Of course, he flew in by his usual method: a luxurious North Pole Cutter Deluxe with 12-deer power; inefficient and uneconomic, but, as Santa said,
" ...uneconomic, but......Iconic !"
Congress will take up his application for $ 20 billion after the Xmas holidays.
Monday, November 24, 2008
Capitalism as it is historically defined in the United States of America is not the economic system which will enable mankind to establish its presence in Space.
American Capitalism is too prone to recurring cycles of destruction. Whether this is due to the theory itself, or the impossible nature of the American businessman is not clear, but it seems to be a bit of both. Today as we watch the resurrection of Citi group after its near death experience, we wonder at the wisdom which created such a system, wherein such monstrous institutions are allowed to roam the land, only to create chaos when they possess no homeostasis to regulate their vital processes.
Some economists and thinkers have lauded the "creative destruction" of American Capitalism. However, as an economic system gets larger and more complex, the recurring destructive cycles become more and more destructive: as the highs get higher, the lows become lower, thereby creating an Event Horizon of economy, a dark hole from which nothing will emerge.
It is obvious from the past year that the down and destructive part of the cycle is prey to panic and fear in a short time frame more so than the up part of the cycle is prone to exuberance: exuberance is spread over years; panic destroys in the blink of an eye...before the "rational" mind can encompass what is occurring.
Do not misunderstand; I love America. And for those who believe that America is the land of opportunity, I fully agree. However, I shall add that as you come to America to make your way in this land of opportunity, your children will enter into one of the cycles of destruction. Be aware of it. Every parent should teach their children what to expect in this economic system. We should try to understand that we cannot always lay up our wealth where rust corrupts, moth consumes, and the financial system spreads cancer. Such an Economy cannot build the structure required for the emigration of mankind into Space. The movement into Space requires investment over years and years.
This may only be effectively accomplished by a system which is not recurrently self-destructive. If we step into Space with a large footprint, a severe crash of the economy when it occurs will wreak havoc on a gargantuan level. The process of going back to square one, or square five, or whatever it is, will eventually be discerned as being too expensive, and resources will turn inwards to salvage what remains of the Earth-bound populations. Neither American Capitalism nor American Democracy, love them as we do, as they are understood in the present day of 2008, will lead mankind into the future.
When the Frame of Mind arrives that will do so, it will be accompanied a revolution in religious feeling among the large part of the peoples of Earth, for only Religion possesses the dynamic which may change large groups of human beings from inward and selfish looking tribes and nations into higher level communities, capable of controlling the Form of the Present and Future, as well as the lessons of the Past.
Saturday, November 22, 2008
Friday, November 21, 2008
Thursday, November 20, 2008
Wednesday, November 19, 2008
Our children will work as temps, often in deserted commercial real estate.
Our grandchildren will drive to deserted shopping malls to work in spaces rented from failed stores, empty Penney's, abandoned Sears, millions of empty square feet of space to cramp them into.
They will nap in the heat of the summer in their cars, essentially living most the day in their old cars made overseas. This nation is dying. It is an archipelago of islands of poverty and despair, the paranoid archipelago.... ...kept together with ghost ships steaming between the langolier gaps of what is left of our lives.
Tell your constituents to face the storm, or face the fire storm. Take your choice.
Tuesday, November 18, 2008
Monday, November 17, 2008
"Reading the Signs" sent me a poem by Paul Celan, born Paul Antschel.
He was bar Mitzvah, or a son of the Commandment, born in 1920, or thereabouts, and died in 1970, or thereabouts, by suicidal jump into the river Seine. Mr. Celan lived through the Holocaust, and the experience had great influence on him.
A great deal of the biography I read of him seems to focus on his poem "Todtnauberg", which was influenced by his readings of and meeting and discussion with Martin Heidegger, the philosopher. One motive for his journey to see Heidegger was the fact that Heidegger wrote in his "Introduction to Metaphysics" about the "greatness" of National Socialism.
Seen from the vantage point of the post-Holocaust world, such an insertion cries for explanation. However, the great Heidegger provided none, neither to posterity, nor to Celan. When Celan published his "Todtnauberg", he sent Heidegger a first edition. Heidegger responded with a perfunctory thank you note. I found this an interesting story. I have always considered Heidegger to be a whirly-gig type of philosopher, whipped across the asphalt world's pavement like a schoolboy's top.
Heidegger walked a tight-rope between heaven and the abyss: the awesomeness and the awe-fullness of creation. He finally fell into hell. End of story.
But this brings us back to the poem:
TENEBRAE Near are we, Lord, near and graspable. Grasped already, Lord, clawed into each other, as if each of our bodies were your body, Lord. Pray, Lord, pray to us, we are near. Wind-skewed we went there, went there to bend over pit and crater. Went to the water-trough, Lord. It was blood, it was what you shed, Lord. It shined. It cast your image into our eyes, Lord. Eyes and mouth stand so open and void, Lord. We have drunk, Lord. The blood and the image that was in the blood, Lord. Pray, Lord. We are near.
note: "tenebrae' means "shadows".
When I first read this, I did not know Celan's history, and I gulped, "Gadfrey Daniels! What cunning deviltry is here?!" I crossed myself and hastily glanced about into the far, dark corners of the room, where demons tend to congregate - if they would do someone harm.
My immediate reaction was an image of Milton's perverse kingdom of the fallen angels, grasping and clawing, standing over the pits and bomb craters of the divine effulgence, eyeing the wasteland where they found themselves, withered trees laced with the mosses of despair.
The compulsive prayer to the Lord struck me as an obsessive and fear filled chant, aimed not at love and obedience, but at power and force, intending by the abject spectacle of the weakness of the praying vermin to compel pity in a God, whose anger has blasted them and whose anger may possibly be diminished, post-cataclysmic, in a divine state of satiety with vengeance.
I never liked the imagery of blood. Depictions of the Sacred Heart I find too, much too akin to ancient hearts of Egypt encased in mortuary alabaster jars, preserved for the sons of Horus. I do not like the religions and icons of the dead. I know Jesus died, but he lived for 33 blood-less glorious years before that! And the "water-trough" filled with blood repels me.
I do not like the translation "water-trough". I suppose it is "Trog" something something originally: Wassertrog or something............. and it is filled with blood!
And "It cast your image into our eyes, Lord."
Is there no hope?
For instead of the Lord, in Whose image we were made, and tacitly assuming a glorious image, we have an image of the Lord reflected to our eyes by the blood within the trough! A charnel-house image of God. A God of the abattoir!
Yes. That indeed sounds like the 20th Century; like the Holocaust. I glanced and saw that the sender was "Reading the Signs". This calmed me considerably, because I know she would have no evil intention; the poem is not some spell nor incantation. It was Celan's continuation of the Holocaust, however, in a symbolic structure we call poetry.
We must leave the blood-filled trough and see the face of God .
No one ever successfully taught me where to see the face of God. I had to fight for it every year of my life, through excessive elation - when one thinks oneself so strong they need not God - and through horrific despair - when one thinks oneself unworthy of another breath.
We are running out of time. If......... If we do not break free of the Shoah, of World War II, of always searching for an Enemy to destroy and to be destroyed by, of the Religion of Blood and Blood's Passion, we shall die in the leaking catacombs of the Past, down among the vampires of our out-of-time Symbols, where even our mothers suck our blood.
This is the meaning of the trend in vampire and undead imagery in cinema. A new film "Twilight" opens this week, based on a successful series of books. It is young people as Vampires. Part of us finds glory in the National Socialism of Vampires and their absolute Power. So we fall down and worship.
Then, when the lights go up, we are back to normal, and the films have not hurt us. No, for the films are mostly a mirror we hold up to ourselves. Vampires in films do not cause our love of Death; they show us as we are, the destructive and fallen. Deus Lumen resurrexit ex tenebriis
Sunday, November 16, 2008
The deeper we are stuck in our Auschwitz past, the more difficult it becomes to be free of it.
By Avraham Burg November 16, 2008
...The Shoah is so pervasive that a study conducted a few years ago in a Tel Aviv school for teachers found that more than 90% of those questioned view it as the most important experience of Jewish history. That means it is more important than the creation of the world, the exodus from Egypt, the delivering of the Torah on Mt. Sinai, the ruin of both Holy Temples, the exile, the birth of Zionism, the founding of the state or the 1967 Six-Day War...
...I voluntarily withdrew from political life in Israel. I couldn't help feeling that Israel has become a kingdom lacking in vision and without a prophetic horizon. On the surface, everything is in order; decisions are carried out, life moves on, the ship sails along. But where is this movement heading? No one knows. The sailors are rowing without seeing anything; the lower-ranking officers are holding their eyes up to the leadership, but the leaders are not capable of seeing past each coming, rising, tumbling wave...
...utopian vision has fallen silent in Israel. Concerns for personal survival and well-being, as well as fear about the ongoing bloodshed and security emergencies, about Gaza and Iran and the realities of demographics and population, have silenced the moral debate and blocked the horizons of vision and creative thinking. I believe Israel must move away from trauma to trust, that we must abandon the "everything is Auschwitz" mentality and substitute for it an impulse toward liberty and democracy...
The Past as a Mutual Panopticon Prison, wherein the Past imprisons the Present, the Present imprisons the Past, and both imprison the Future.
I am in mind of Mr. Lenoge - a character from the universe of Stephen King - because I have talked to a gentleman who stated, quite openly and for all the world too see and with the sure conviction of the dim-witted, that he admired George W. Bush's stubbornness. I looked at him for a bit, rather as if he were standing there 4 sheets to the wind, unbuttoned or unzipped, shirt flap falling through a vent improperly opened to public view, perhaps also as if he were examining his nasal interior - in short, I looked at him with disgust, wondering whether to reply the long way or the short way.
I decided to do both. I said briefly, " I admire Adolf Hitler, for even as Berlin lay levelled and burnt about him, his stubbornness did not let him admit defeat." I would like to say that I let this settle in for a while. However, I have found that sayings like that do not really settle in; they rather bounce off the intended target, and roll off in smaller and smaller rebounds towards some corner of the locker room. One is left in the "paint of uncertainty", as it were ( using all basketball imagery here!!), wondering if one should say, "Get it?" So I added, "Stubbornness in defense of the indefensible is not a virtue." (I realize this pithy saying is hardly "long" or lengthy, but we shall pretend it is so for the present.) Since this combined my moral superiority with a quasi-Barry Goldwaterism, I felt as if it were time for a victory tea from the Grace Tea Company, NY, NY.
Saturday, November 15, 2008
Four years ago, I picked up a mid-summer's weekend Detroit News and read about all the wonderful SUVs. I thought to myself, "They will not be happy when the price of oil goes skyrocketing again...as it did in the 1970s." Even though many in management and on the boards had lived through the 1970s, it seemed as if they had no memory of them, collective memory or individual, and acted as if bigger was better, since (1) SUVs were not subject to CAFE standards , as were standard autos, and (3) SUVs contained more profit per unit.
Just months before Hurricane Katrina, we had a Ford salesman expostulate at us, "You're the first people to ask about fuel economy in 5 years!" And so on. So my contempt for the Auto industry and their enablers, the American people who drove and demanded the SUVs - best exemplified by that evolutionary dead-end: the Hummer Owner - is very deep. HOWEVER, Money to the Auto Industry is money to an industry which creates a product which we use, not to scheming bankers. University Types may blather all they wish about letting free markets have their way. This exemplifies the stupidity of the smart and educated: they think they have found eternal truth.
Free markets are idiots! They are no smarter than the people participating in them and running them. It is Free Men and Women that are the "invisible hands" which determine the Course and History of Nations. Markets are the faithful servants of a free society, not their rulers. Allowing some half-baked economic theory ... and note here that I consider most present day economic theory to be "half-baked", and mainly because it derives from a society that has pushed the Divine aside; in doing so, that society has doomed itself to wander for eternity, searching and never finding, a Flying Dutchman without a port... to determine the fate of nations is to abdicate our responsibility.
Free Markets that no longer function as the servants of mankind become idolatrous Molochs, which will destroy us and our children. If the Auto Industry fails - and recall that the Auto Industry was for years the paradigm of the US economy - the entire Auto Sector goes down the tube for an indeterminate period of time. Unemployment will be in double digit figure within 3 months. The recession will become a black hole. This will surpass the Great Depression. All this may be just; it may be right; it may be what the Auto Industry deserves, and it may be what academic notions of "free markets" ( curiously insulated from the lives and sufferings of the common folk) call for, BUT I suspect very much that we shall have no stomach for the despair we shall undoubtedly witness. Ask yourself, how long can I endure to wander in the wasteland...east of Eden?
I know this partly because of the Irony I spoke of; the reversal of fortunes where the mighty are cast down from their thrones. The absolute rapidity of the destruction of the so-called American Empire ( as Karl Rove called it ) points to a long time and very deep and systemic rottenness at the core of modern American society.
The Irony of the Reversal from Neoconservative preening upon the stage of history to being thrown into the dumpster is so absolute and so clear and so quickly done, that it not only takes one's breath away, it gives one pause and wonder about God's scenario for all this. Secretary Rice comes back from the Middle East with no peace. Of course she does. Did anyone expect anything else? The condemned are not allowed to be redeemed....yet. The Tzionistische Medina of right-wing Israel drives old people from their dwellings: http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/middle_east/7729487.stm
This is the true face of the right-wing ally of right-wing America. ...and the right-wing justifies it by : "God gave the land to the Jewish people. Full stop." But, this is not verifiable as truth, for even Jews themselves may say that Israel cannot be established before the coming of the Messiah. It is not the present truth. It is a wandering desire from the past. This world is ruled by phantasms. Economic theories parading as eternal Truth, old tales from a history long ago, arrogant attitudes, and total disregard for the Divine. Do not do your Auto bailout. Let your Society be destroyed. It certainly deserves it. Just hang on a bit longer to complete your role as enabler and accomplice..... Earn your horns as spirits of Infinite Negation.
Thursday, November 13, 2008
Monday, November 10, 2008
Sunday, November 09, 2008
Friday, November 07, 2008
Monday, November 03, 2008
Saturday, November 01, 2008
Markets are very smart in a very limitedf area. Outside their area of expertise, they are rather like children afflicted with Asperger's Syndrome...only a large group of influential [?] feeble minds of Republicans and conservatives have seen fit to inflict this scourge upon us.
Anyway, read the following before the election:
Rethinking Development Economics
Fear, hope, and great transformations
By LaDawn Haglund
Thursday, 18 September 2008