Open Menu: feel free to contribute as you will…

P1150178(click for larger)
You’ll scarcely credit this, and it’s understandable if you see it as the wildest of conjectures on my part.  But this female jackrabbit I’ve dubbed Jacqueline, of course, hung around this wonderful Scottie dog rock (a gift from a friend) in the early spring.  A number of eager males came to pay her court, and engaged in mating dances and contests among themselves…to earn her favor.  Sometimes they went off-stage to the back of the rock, where I’m sure she has made a bit of a hollow out of bent Russian olive branches and long grasses.

She’d also made a little nest of plucked dried grass where she’s sitting in this picture. For the past several weeks she’s not only been sitting on her little bed, but has been staring at the Doggie Rock…as though it’s a religious icon altar.  Of course in my mind I hear her chanting ‘Om mani padme…Scottie dog…’ or something close to that in Jackrabbit Speech.  Can she be praying?  Well, who can say?  But rapt she is as she gazes toward it in stillness…

Myself, not for lack of trying, the only ‘church’ service I ever found spiritually helpful was sweat lodge.  We learned from the Dineh, then went to a few Ute sweat ceremonies, and finally built our own bent-wood structure, covered it with tarps to keep the heat from the fired volcanic rocks inside.  These days I’m not able to crawl into the lodge, so I find spiritual renewal as I can.

This is my contribution to the thread.

This is the last song the late John Trudell ever recorded, along with Quiltman and the Pines.  It serves as church for me, and takes my spirit to realms in which I could live more hours every day.  It’s been a long time getting published on youtube.  No matter how I searched, I couldn’t find the lyrics.  If I have time, I’ll try to jot a few down and bring them.  Enjoy, even if you weep as you listen.  I reckon that you’ll like lots of the tracks on the album, as well.

Rest in peace and power, John Trudell.  Yep, your ride showed up on Dec. 8 last year as you’d expressed it so well.   Our own rides will show up for each of us, perhaps to carry us off to other realms, better realms.  Bless you forever, and your family as well.

54 responses to “Open Menu: feel free to contribute as you will…

  1. our son’s due i for a visit in a few hours, so it’s likely i’ll be present more sporadically, although it’s hard to anticipate. his visit’s been whittle down from a week to mebbe just a couple days, but will be the last time we see him before he gets ‘deployed’ (what a vile term) to some unknown location on christmas day. merry christmas from unca sam, son.

    anyway, we all want the time to count, yanno? it indeed will, of that i’m certain. the fencing project will be deleted from the schedule. ;-)

  2. (“#Content” link not working w/in the page; scroll down a bit)

    “…the philistine-bourgeois mentality…is completely wrapped up in probability…Bereft of imagination, as the philistine-bourgeois always is…he lives within a certain trivial compendium of experiences as to how things go…The philistine-bourgeois mentality thinks that it controls possibility… [T]hereby it has imprisoned itself in the thralldom of spiritlessness and is the most wretched of all…but the philistine-bourgeois mentality spiritlessly triumphs.” Soren K, “The Sickness Unto Death,” pp. 41-42, Hong/Hong ed.

    Getting and spending, we lay waste our powers | Little we see in nature that is ours-Wordsworth, “the world is too much with us.”

    I have had a dream, past the wit of man to
    say what dream it was: man is but an ass, if he go
    about to expound this dream. Methought I was–there
    is no man can tell what. Methought I was,–and
    methought I had,–but man is but a patched fool, if
    he will offer to say what methought I had. The eye
    of man hath not heard, the ear of man hath not
    seen, man’s hand is not able to taste, his tongue
    to conceive, nor his heart to report, what my dream
    was. Bottom, “A Midsummer Night’s Dream.”

    but the philistine-bourgeois mentality spiritlessly triumphs.

    • oh, my, jason; i wish i could follow along on the wikis, but alas…no. now the kierkegaard, yes, at least sort of. the willum is exquisitely fine. but with trudell’s poetry still inside me, i remembered this song i love well, not that my sole ‘live’ grandmother would count here. ;-) their original got pulled, but this is the song.

      For each child that’s born
      a morning star rises and sings
      to the universe who we are

      We are our grandmothers prayers
      we are our grandfathers dreamings
      we are the breath of the ancestors
      we are the spirit of God

      We are Mothers of courage
      fathers of time
      Daughters of dust
      sons of great visions
      we are sisters of mercy
      brothers of love
      lovers of life and the builders of nations


      • “If it were not for the
        Poetic or Prophetic
        character. the Philo-
        -sophic & Experimen-
        -tal would soon be
        at the ratio of all
        things. & stand still,
        unable to do other
        than repeat the same
        dull round over a-
        are we not there? repeating the same dull round? trips to the mall? bombing runs? election spectacles? The End of History needs no Poetic or Prophetic character, does it?

        He who sees the In-
        -finite in all things
        sees God. He who
        sees the Ratio [reason] only
        sees himself only
        There’s an “anti-science,” anti-Newtonian element to all this Blake stuff of course, not w/o some reason. living in “harmony w/nature” or according to the dictates of nature is not a concept w/o its own problems, esp. if you see “the infinite in all things,” but look where Kant’s “putting nature on the rack” has gotten us? does nature only confess truth under torture? Thucydides says you must “torture history” to get at its truth, drawing from the legal custom of the time of torturing slaves to ensure the truthfulness of their testimony. However, it’s a metaphor; the person he “tortured” was himself in going around questioning people & trying to get at the facts of the war that he was also a participant in & eyewitness to. But he asserts such “torture” can enable mastery of events & a certain predictive ability and so there is some continuity w/later notions of “torturing nature.” The goal of both is mastery, to be dominant in a master-slave relationship. To make nature man’s slave. Slavery is intrisicately connected with warfare, slaves as POW’s and all that, and so man (sic), in this mentality, is at war w/”nature” and could never be otherwise. And the ultimate goal is to control nature to such a degree that one controls history, the experiment in the lab producing the result on the (battle)field. all this is about death & killing, obvs.

        anyway, long-winded point made. thanks for the song.

        • i appreciate your long-winded point, and welcome for the song (distracting dance and all).

          biblical: man’s dominion over beasts and birds or whatever, no? and yes i see where you’ve gone with masters over slaves as cannon fodder, not just POWs, i’d add. i’m not sure how to express it, but vis a vis ‘ratio’ there’s something odious about one’s ‘personal freedom’ as opposed to freeing one’s class…or all.

          i’m not a deist (more of an apathiest), and perhaps i don’t see the infinite, but as to the Master Class, this i’d run into trying to find a heady passage from the bros. karamazov i heard being read on ‘lewis’ last night:

          “The world says: “You have needs — satisfy them. You have as much right as the rich and the mighty. Don’t hesitate to satisfy your needs; indeed, expand your needs and demand more.” This is the worldly doctrine of today. And they believe that this is freedom. The result for the rich is isolation and suicide, for the poor, envy and murder.”

          ~Fyodor Dostoyevsky, The Brothers Karamazov

          • Brothers K?!? been aeons, it seems, since i read that, but nice quote. not sure i buy that about the poors’ “envy & murder.” and rich people don’t seem to commit quite as much suicide as say, india’s farmers.

            here’s one more on the “master-slave” mentality:
            “There is no greater pleasure in life than to place your hand on your enemy’s head – and laugh.” (it’s implied here that the defeated enemy is kneeling in supplication. We don’t associate laughter so much w/military victory, but cf. Psalms 2: “He who sits in the heavens will laugh, he holds the nations in derision”; the laughter of malicious mockery.) This is quoted by Euripides’ chorus in The Bacchae (if you know that play, for obvious reasons: Dionysus is about to defeat the repressive & self-repressed tyrant Pentheus, and use the tyrant’s voyeurism about women to do it, women who are expressing a kind of carnivalesque liberty from social/gender roles thanks to Dionysus’ influence) but this quote is originally from the archaic (pre-classical) poem, “The wedding of Cadmus.” Cadmus is the mythological founder of (Greek, not Egyptian) Thebes (of Oedipus, the Bacchae itself, etc., fame & historically, one of classical Athens’ major enemies; Athenian tragic drama projected all this shit on to their enemy, Thebes).

            Again, the master-slave mentality, this time in relation to women. Marriage as conquest & slave-taking, part of the purpose of warfare being the “traffic in women.” (this is not the only mentality about women, thank jove, but they could be so misogynistic that they’d make the Taliban blush. thank jeebus we are beyond all that in our fervent zeal to “liberate women” from the head choppers and circumcisers.)

            • “crush your enemies…and hear the lamentations of the women!” great clip. amigo. and yes; ‘human trafficking’ (women and chirren) is a big nato meme.

              but no, i haven’t read the greek plays for…so many decades i can’t do the math just now. but shame on dionysuss. now the psalms and ‘laughing at the nations in derision’? is that the one god laughing at nationalism?

              the brothers K passage i’m hunting i’ve discovered was in book 11, no chapter mentioned, so i’m down to hunting (srsly) thru cliffs notes short narratives, arggh. no luck, so i’ve asked mr. wd to try to score me a large print edition at the manco (lame in both legs) liBerry (as if). but the line i remembered is oft quoted:

              “I can see the sun, but even if I cannot see the sun, I know that it exists. And to know that the sun is there – that is living.”

              i hear ya on the quote, but remember he was writing from mid-19th century russia, during very troubled times for the poor.

              in the meantime, i got waylaid by a commenter at ian welsh’s wondering if the reason ‘the negro’ doesn’t get much done by creative cognition (dream to fruition) is due to his brain having less crinkles in the neo-cortex. srsly. i should stay the F off the comment stream, but no one has seriously challenged him/her, ave for one fairly good link w/ no explanation.

              yep, i should go make mr. wd’s salad for the work week. or bake cookies, lol.

        • i’ll reply here since the nested comment spaces are getting a bit thin. i know this will stretch your original point (torture it?), but this author is calling out big brand celebrity mcKibben’s new ‘war on climate change’ for a number of different reasons, but three biggies are his failing to name the class war as a culprit, although i forget if he mentioned capitalism per se, but neither does big bill ever bring in the freaking military’s carbon footprint (although he says mcK is ‘for peace’, nor does he seem t get how huge a footprint industrial meat production is, nor any factory farming for that matter.

          and of course that’s one of my gripes, as essentially, he’s a proponent of green capitalism, but along the lines of build factories, make solar panels, wind turbines, never mentioning the external costs of any of that. stein’s plan may be a bit akin to it (i’ve pretty much forgotten), but it doesn’t matter, as hers is not a big brand, eh?

          now this fellah is pretty pie in the sky: end private cars (not workable in areas where there’s zero public transportation, groceries, hardware, yada, yada, are many miles away, and so on. come to that, i guess i’d never heard that water vapor exacerbates atmospheric heat. well anyhoo, here it is. and i reckon as well that the author doesn’t know who funds his group, nor that ‘350’ ppm is old school, as we’ve far surpassed that already.

          ‘Clean, Green, Class War: Bill McKibben’s Shortsighted ‘War on Climate Change’, by Elliot Sperber (quite a name, eh? try sayin’ that three times) ;-)

          • it is really dismaying that people don’t get the connection b/n class struggle & environmentalism, isn’t it? the overworked earth is being overworked by overworked people (while, at the same moment, billions are un/underemployed). and what can you say about the military? willful obtuseness? melville’s “church of inoffensiveness by all to all”? there’s nothing, or not much, controversy over putting up solar panels. there are solar panels on the pentagon for jeebus’ sake, as they proudly advertise. McKibben would probably applaud if told that Africom HQ was powered by 100% renewables.

            • oh, my, jason; you really do make me work hard to earn my keep at this babylon. i couldn’t recall the context of your partial quote, and spent a yotta time looking.

              “”[H]e must die the death and be murdered, in order to light the gay bridals and other merry-makings of men, and also to illuminate the solemn churches that preach unconditional inoffensiveness by all to all”

              but otoh, i read a few excellent essays on the melville’s utter brilliance, and the metaphors underneath the different characters. heathen v. ‘civilized’, sacred v secular, post-modern…well, here’s the best essay i ran across.

              but yes, dismaying is a good term. but..but…”even the military has noted how serious climate change i! and they were using renewables to fuel their fighter jets until…!” thanks for your final sentence, a lotta funny there.

              • looking at the essay now. his dependence on The Bard is enormous, an unimaginable burden of influence that he carries off marvelously.

                [Aside] How from the finny subject of the sea
                These fishers tell the infirmities of men;
                And from their watery empire recollect
                All that may men approve or men detect!
                –Pericles, Prince of Tyre

                He quotes this wonderful line from 1 Henry IV in the “extracts”.:
                “parmacetti is the soveriegnest thing for an inner bruise.” doesn’t seem to work for ahab but ishmael says in the astounding chapter, A Squeeze of the Hand, quoting & amplifying a line from Macbeth: “let all squeeze ourselves into the milk & sperm of human kindness.”

                • how fine that you’ve caught so many references to other great writings and themes, jason; thank you. you’re a treat, and i learn a hella lot from you. as i said, you shore do make me earn my keep here. ;-)

                  • my pleasure. The Poetic or Prophetic Genius is the True Man. ;) how someone could intuit, to a greater or lesser degree, The Future, a la Kafka’s “The Trial” or stuff in The Grand Inquisitor, it just blows my mind.

                    • of course i lost my comment and links; for now:

                      yes, timeless, universal. hard to bear, and i can’t watch part II for now. ‘death is difficult; death is so easy’ or close.

                      this page notes some of the poets who wrote on the almost unspeakable devastation of the ‘experiment’; were these lines of paul élouard’s spoken? i couldn’t find his ‘la victoire de guernica’ in english (rusty, dusty french here):

                      The woman weeps as if her tears forever
                      would wash away the blood and broken limbs
                      The tortured horse and whinnies and climbs
                      iron hoof on towards broken beam electric stars…

                    • thank you. but “western democracies'” response to fascism could hardly be called “non-intervention,” a word the author uses several times. active support & inaction as support is more like it.

          • from sperber:
            “And how can we overlook the related fact that the owners of the world have a substantial incentive in ridding the planet of the billions of people whose existence alone threatens their property and privileges? Indeed, allowing climate change to kill the poor would not only be more convenient than policing, fighting, locking out and locking up billions;”

            i was trying to find the bibble verse that evil people seek to “wipe out the poor from the earth,” but this’ll have to do:
            The wicked draw the sword and bend their bows,
            to bring down the poor and needy,
            to slay those who walk uprightly; (psalm 37:14; note the identification of the poor & the upright.)

            given my own religious indoctrination as a kid, i sometimes think these people have made a pact w/the evil one, ol’ scratch, that guy. God in the opening of Goethe’s Faust calls Mephistopheles “the spirit that negates,” the spirit of annihilation. “in love with destruction & death,” i think the Roman historian Livy says at the start of his history. is there anything more nihilistic than capitalism?

            I saw him run after a gilded
            butterfly: and when he caught it…
            he did so set his
            teeth and tear it; O, I warrant it, how he mammocked [tore to pieces]
            it!….’tis a noble child…(from Coriolanus; the boy becomes a soldier by destroying what is beautiful, here, tearing off butterfly wings.)

    • possibility & imagination: what is the purpose of filling the world w/guns & propaganda but to destroy possible alternatives & limit or eliminate even the thought of alternatives? e.g. potus peace prize has sold the saudis 112.5 billion dollars worth of weapons in his time in office.

      • so dreaming of a better world is made nigh onto impossible? i’ve been watching the psyop within a psyop re: the boy from aleppo on breaks, not only at b’s, but on my favorite commie’s twitter thang. scroll around if it suits your fancy to decode any of it.

        nothing’s left standing in yemen, is it? ah, our partners in peace, the saudis.

        p.s. on edit: i do wish that had the intellectual heft to grok your wiki entries above, but sadly, no.

  3. permit me to add some moar schadenfreude:

  4. Here’s what I’ve been able to find out what’s behind the scandal that cost Paul Manafort his job with the Trump campaign. Members of Yanukovych’s party in Ukraine, which still holds a few seats in parliament, admit paying Manafort for work (consulting, lobbying) that has not yet been specified by the reporting.

    Manafort, was and still is a partner in a firm that includes Roger Stone and Charlie Black, longtime anti-Democratic hit men (the Willie Horton ad, Helms’s “White Hands” ad among other strategies). Lee Atwater was a founding partner of the lobbying/law firm. Not exactly a bipartisan lobbying firm, unless they changed recently. In short, lots of bad blood with Clinton campaign.

    By working for Yanukovych’s party, Manafort had a putative matryoshka doll relationship to Putin. Manafort was in Yanukovych’s pocket; Yanukovych was in Putin’s pocket. The relationship to Yanukovych is interesting because Yanukovych was one of the competing Ukrainian oligarchs, each of whom sponsored their own party, and Yanukovych in his aspirational lifestyle was the most like Trump of all of them. Interesting that. In terms of ideology, what is in conflict internally in the Ukraine is Ukrainian Catholic nationalism versus Russian Orthodox nationalism versus secular national socialism, with a small minority of arnarchists who promoted Euromaidan through the Occupy and Take the Square networks.

    Back to Manafort. It appears that he was lobbying for the Ukraine government de facto without registering as a lobbyist of a foreign power. This could have legal consequences in the US, and at least, even if not convicted could divert attention from the Trump campaign. Trump (on the advice of his children?) canned him and went to the alt-right Breitbart staff to backfill the positions. This brings in hardcore Islamophobi, anti-Semitic, racist propagandists who are not beyond fabricated stories and hate-drenched spin. The 9/11 mosque story was one of Bannon’s organizing efforts, for example.

    I’m not sure what proportion of Trump’s putative working class base will want to go where the Breitbarters are wanting to take them.

    The upside, if the Trump campaign succeeds in destroying the Republican Party in the downticket races because of their association with Trump, one of the third parties is the alternative to Clinton. At the moment the likely one is Johnson’s Liberatarians, but the way is open for Jill Stein to make a coherent case for a Green Party President if she can grab media attention. The usual way to grab attention is a quid pro quo for access and ad buys for coverage, just not so explicitly stated. To make access desirable, Stein has to make news sufficient to have media wanting to interview her; she has to provide interviews that attract viewers; she must not give away access to hostile interviewers. That’s a tough tightrope to walk even for folks like Hillary Clinton. Tougher for someone not as well-known. To grab a chance, the surprise after Labor Day needs to be the unexpected strength (currently estimated at 2%) of the Green Party. Nobody’s including them in polls; that estimate could be way off.

    This screwy election year continues to get screwier but not more optimistic. Think about what the alt-right would do if Jill Stein actually won the Presidency without alliances with Democrats or Republicans in Congress. I think the appropriate term for the process is Carterization.

    • gotta beg off until tomorrow, me, thd. i get snatches of time for online when mr. wd and/or son are gone. a treat of a good visit, but fraught with…shall we say…divergent world and domestic views? ah, life…eh: but as to your manafort narrative, what i’d thought i’d known is a bit different. ooof: lee atwater: such a flash from the past. and then there’s hill & knowlton, :-)

      sweet dreams; tomorrow, depending on…well, yanno. availability?

    • there seem to have been several competing narratives about the ouster of yanukovitch, naturally. my impression was that the anger that sparked the populist maidan was due to his reneging on his plans/in progress joining the EU association agreement. the burgeoning astroturfed maidan may have been responsible for the snipers killing protestors, but i’m agnostic on that part. suffice it to say that there are still plenty of neo-nazis around, even though chocolate man says he’s trying to control them (‘they’re all voluntary militias!’

      as an aside, yes, some in one of those uber-nationalist groups did get charged w/ raping women and children, but that may just be for show in some ways, but never mind. i’d found a link in which Yanukovitch had spelled out the numbers as to why the EU aa punished ukraine, and that the EU was immovable on the terms. but of course we reckon that kyiv is hot to be allied with the EU and to join nato.

      as to putin and Y, it seems they had (ahem) had their differences (competing oligarchs? i dunno). but as Y thought it better to turn to russia and the CIS nations for trade (iirc what i read the other day), and the the fact that putin did admit at some point that he helped Y get into russia… just google/binged: here’s the Times’ version of it ( bafflingly even-handed version).

      what part did manafort and friends play? Hypocrisy alert: if this becomes an issue of treason or prosecution or such, but hillary’s emails…? oh, well. was is breitbart dude that was behind the ‘trump apologizes fer bein’ a bigot’ as per headlines?

      this is likely srsly schizoid; i’ve been composing it in a word doc in snatches for 24 hours or so. more later on the stein issues. the laddie is due to leave in the a.m.

    • ha; well stein went on fox news with tucker (no bowtie) carlson!

      i know that assange had said the soros emails were poorly curated, but duran has been digging thru them. his site has some other potentially interesting other stuff, a well.

    • i did see piece recently showing how useless the polls really are (the question is never simply ‘who would you like for prez?’) but you caused me to recall honkala and stein being chained to folding chairs by dhs for trying to attend some town hall…i forget where. no coverage of course. but the guardian at least had a headline that she’s calling for a declaration of climate change crisis. so wondering what other there news might be out there, i found this from mint press news.

      it seems the script cuomo was given was to hit them both, but i did see on an open thread on the meeting at c99% that stein’s favorite person is mlk, baraka’s…fannie lou hamor. ;-)

      Ajamu Baraka, “Uncle Tom,” And The Pathology Of White Liberal Racism; Ajamu Baraka is not vilified for calling Obama an Uncle Tom. He is vilified for refusing not to.’

      and lol, in margaret kimberly’s piece on the librul’s nasty big tent, she’d included this crazy hit piece at huffPo on why no one should take them seriously™. copy/paste won’t work there (they’re so kewl they must disable it), but essentially ‘Houston: 3 green party actually activists*actually* walked into a (gasp) mcDogfood, yeah, it sounds like the start of a sick joke, but: fooking hypocrites!’

      but i’d guess that it would take some major financial upheaval to get lots of folks to turn the Green way, but then…they might more likely to turn to johnson.

  5. And just today, John Podesta’s firm is lawyered up in consequence of the Manafort revelations. Watch for Vince Weber’s firm to do the same. Failure to register as an agent of a foreign country is the charge they likely trying to beat.

  6. I can help you with your Brothers K quote, wendye – it is from Ivan’s essay, “The Grand Inquisitor”. Should be possible to find that somewhere online by itself. Ivan is the “contra” of “pro and contra” in the book, so his ideas see the cross of Christianity from the other side. “Love Ivan” is the message of spiritual leadership in the novel.

    The quotations you were considering reminded me of this:

    “. . .if ever the man shudders at the alienation, and the world strikes terror in his heart, he looks up (to the right or left, just as it may chance) and sees a picture. There he sees that the I is embedded in the world and that there is really no I at all – so the world can do nothing to the I, and he is put at ease; or he sees that the world is embedded in the I, and that there is really no world at all – so the world can do nothing to the I, and he is put at ease. Another time, if the man shudders at the alienation, and the I strikes terror in his heart, he looks up and sees a picture, which picture he sees does not matter, the empty I is stuffed full with the world or the stream of the world flows over it, and he is put at ease.
    “But a moment comes, and it is near, when the shuddering man looks up and sees both pictures in a flash together. And a deeper shudder seizes him.” [Buber: I and Thou]

  7. my, my; the buber quotes needs some meditation for it to take hold of my inner self. “and a deeper shudder seizes him”, brrrrr.

    thank you so much for the tip; most of the chapter 11 cliffs notes are just narratives w/o quotes. i really was an exquisite passage, so i do appreciate the hint.

    but the buber quote’s caused me to think of what john irving’s ‘hotel new hampshire character franny’s boyfriend junior (iirc) told her after she was gang-raped by a football team:

    “they can’t touch the You…in You, franny; never forget that”, or close.

    • I need to reread this myself, much forgotten:
      “Toward the end of his life he becomes convinced
      that it is only by following the advice of the great and terrible
      spirit that the fate of these millions of weak rebels, these
      ‘half-finished samples of humanity created in mockery’ can be
      made tolerable. And once convinced of it, he sees as clearly
      that to achieve that object, one must follow blindly the guidance
      of the wise spirit, the fearful spirit of death and destruction,
      hence accept a system of lies and deception and lead humanity
      consciously this time toward death and destruction…”

      and this, w/the peerless gielgud:

      and there’s also Ivan’s meeting w/”the devil”:
      “Man will be lifted up with a spirit of divine Titanic pride and the man-god will appear. From hour to hour extending his conquest of nature infinitely by his will and his science…”

      • i’ll try them later, No. 9. a large storm keeps blinking the power, thus the modem (requiring reset times) off and on. thanks for the quotes, though; brrrrr. i did like one passage concerning “flooding the accused/guilty w/ love, creating a condition for his spirit to soar” or close. but was that when they believed dmitri to be guilty of their fathers murder? i’ve forgotten most all of it.

        • Here’s what Doestoevski himself says in his own introduction to a reading of The Grand Inquisitor given at St. Petersburg University in 1879:

          ” . . .An atheist who is suffering in his unbelief writes during a spell of misery a curious, fantastic poem, in which he portrays Christ in conversation with one of the foremost priests of the Catholic Church – The Grand Inquisitor.

          “The author’s sufferings are so intense because in this priest he sees a true and genuine servant of Christ, even though the priest has a Catholic world outlook which has clearly grown remote from the orthodoxy of the old Apostolic faith.

          “The Grand Inquisitor is really an atheist. What the poem is saying is that if the Christian faith is combined and corrupted with the objectives of this world, then the meaning of Christianity will perish. Human reason will abandon itself to unbelief, and in place of the great ideal of Christ a new tower of Babel will be built. Where Christianity had an exalted view of mankind, under the new order of things mankind will be viewed as a mere herd, and behind the appearance of social love there will rise an open contempt for humanity.”

          • thank you kindly, juliania; i’ve copied this on to my current working word doc to read again at my leisure. but i do see the utter importance of the character and the passage. and dayum: i just realized anew that i haven’t watch the gielgud. oy, so slow i yam, and so many things to do….

      • Thanks for these great links, Jason! I can’t access the Gielgud at present, but I will return to it on a visit to my library connection for sure.

        Here’s just a bit more Dostoievski wrote on the structure of TBK in a letter (always remembering that what an author says about his own work may differ from what the work itself is telling us):

        “I had the plan of giving an answer to this atheistic side of my work [Grand Inquisitor/Ivan] in Book Seven, with the title “A Russian Monk”. Now I am afraid that this answer will not be sufficient, particularly as it does not refute the objections that are raised in the ‘Grand Inquisitor’ and earlier in the work point by point, but merely constitutes an indirect reply. It manifests itself as a world outlook that stands diametrically opposed to those postulates, not point by point, but as an artistic portrait.”

        This may be why many believe the Grand Inquisitor ‘poem’ to be the real Dostoievski. I’ll just say with him, “Let the readers do some of the work themselves.”

  8. @ jason up yonder: now ain’t you The Stickler? it does say that at the link it seems; all i wuz doin’t was huntin’ for any reference to éluard’s ‘guernica’ poem.

    but see? you seem to have been in such high dudgeon that you never said if those lines were in the art video, lol. gotta lot to do in RL in several directions. i may or may not get a new diary up w/ all that’s goin’ on.

    • was i in high dudgeon? it just grated me a bit. Milosevic was about to do another Guernica (right???) and thank gawd we stopped him.

      anyway i am dog-sitting for someone on a spanish vacay who has 5 gajillion cable channels w/mostly nothing on. however, this channel AHC, American History Channel I believe, had a really good program called “Brothels Built America,” somewhat sensationalistic, with a misleading title, and stuck b/n “Ancient Aliens” and “Nazi UFO Hunters.” Some of it pretty obvious (brothels & the military since forever; temple prostitution & fertility rituals in “pagan” times) but who knew that the medieval Catholic church was a big sponsor of prostitution? boys will be boys & men control the money, as God intended, so might as well make some money for a good cause (like convents) off of “nature’s way”, right? it’s also a good thing the catholics have never changed their sexual mores. lol.

      “I have been an unlawful bawd time out of mind. Now i’ll turn lawful hangman. there’s more forgiveness in it.” Pompey, Measure for Measure. Protestantism & the start of modern nationalism will tear down the brothels (to a degree) and replace them w/gallows. the more hedonistic, libertine, epicurean medieval spirit must be at least severely disciplined, if not eliminated. but keep the patriarchy.

      • i’d meant to come back to say “well, mebbe medium dudgeon”, but i did some klutz move and fell over in the bathroom, bonked my head on the tub. mebbe even twice. ;-) got t a bit o’ the dizzies still, so i’ll try to read this later; so many things are here. and i have a question about protestantism as Truth (with a capital T…) if i can find the source again.

      • i’m glad that john pilger penned his excellent+ ‘provoking nuclear war by media’ essay, as i had no idea of the history of that nato project. nor did i ever think to question milosevic as a western-constructed bastard.

        How sweet and honourable it is to die for one’s country:
        Death pursues the man who flees,
        spares not the hamstrings or cowardly backs
        Of battle-shy youths.

        i had tried to read a different article on him, also at counterpunch, but i couldn’t make much sense of it, whether it were he or me, but i backed out of it.

        er…surely not convents as brothels, even if medieval times? ;-) didja watch nazi UFO hunters, lol?

        great line from the bard, but again: i’d had to look it up, and found i’d never even heard of ‘measure for measure’.

        loosely related to your final thoughts, at a diary about max weber’s writing, this sort of comments seemed to have found general approval:

        “But Protestants had an organizing ideal that made their technology possible. Honesty. Absolute Kantian honesty. Honesty that rules even when no one is watching. More importantly, it is an honesty that is embraced with a passion. Just remember the opening sentence of the Protestant Reformation was Luther’s “Out of a LOVE for the truth and the desire to bring it to light…” Truth is something to LOVE. You don’t tell the truth because you fear hellfire. You seek it out because nothing makes you happier than finding a new truth. It is what you live for.
        NOTHING rewards truth-telling more than science and technology. A chemical reaction will work a certain way if you take precautions…”

        meaning: protestant honesty was a Big Thing on the thread, and w/ weber.

        on edit: yeah, i’ll take it easy cuz i have to; sure got my tit in the wringer again, even gotta use a crutch indoors now. humbug. dizzy dame, dizzy head, dizzy legs… ;-)

        • “the brave man dies only once, the coward many times.” (“J. Caesar”). your quote is from Horace, right? whence Wilfred Owen’s “dulce et decorum est”? don’t know about the 2nd pilger article you mention, but yes, the 1st was very good. and nice to see all those retractions about Milosevic in the MSM!

          i don’t know about the Weber/Luther thing. as far as chemicals & the like in a lab, not animals, i suppose anything is fair game. (as long is it stays in the lab, a big question in itself, a la nuclear stuff, gmo’s etc.) but is the “discovery” (or imposition?) of techno-utilitarian efficiency within “nature” really “love of truth”? or an anthropomorphism that subsumes all of the world exterior to humans to human need, whim, and desire? and desire as defined by mastery, not more “passive” energies like contemplation, receiving pleasure, aesthetic appreciation, wonder, awe, etc.? nah, screw all that. throw even the notion of “harmony with nature” into the nuclear reactor! “little we see in nature that is ours.” no shit. it doesn’t become ours by seeing but by taking, or “conversion” thru subjection to the primeval Promethean fire.

          not entirely true of all human achievement, of course. they are playing my favorite moment in all of so-called classical music on the radio. over-playing, cuz i’ve only heard it a billion times. but such repetition is never too much. “stay moment, thou art so fair!”

          take it easy. hope you feel better. no need to respond to my blizzard of blither blather.

          • yes, at least the first two lines, and others besides owen have riffed off them as well, but arlington national cemetery inscribed them in rock, lol.


            yeah, i guess i’m not buyin’ Truth as a Better Capitalism, either, and thanks for the blather. also for the ludwig; lovely remix photos. just what the non-doctor ordered. but thanks; i’m a bit less dizzy-headed (who will know?) might even try to take a bath tonight. ;-)

        • “…we cannot lodge and
          board a dozen or fourteen gentlewomen that live
          honestly by the prick of their needles, but it will
          be thought we keep a bawdy house straight.” Henry 5.
          sorry, per this show, the catholics had a nice racket going on w/brothels. they taxed the pro’s at 50% & gave the tax to convents (yes, that’s right), and the men had to buy indulgences for the practice. and it discouraged experimentation w/homosexuality among the rising middle class & aristo males who were getting married later & later in life. win win for everyone, right? something like this was going on across europe, but these particulars were ascribed to an especially prominent brothel whose patron was none other than Pope Julius II.

          • ouch; so the prostitutes were robbed of their ‘livings’, and the good nuns received the (what’s the equivalent of sexual blood money?)

            great henry the 5th quote; my, you can pull all these right outta your hat.

            but i did find it…finally, parked just where it ought to have been (face palm): ‘In Search of Beethoven‘, café babylon. dunno if you’ve seen the film, but if not, you might enjoy this.

            • yes i said yes i will yes.

              i adore him. but LVB could be a titanic bastard. “i’m a child of divorce. gimme a break!” supposedly his dad would periodically wake up youthful him in drunken fits, force him to play in the middle of the night, and beat him at every wrong note. hmmm…what would lvb have done w/therapy & meds & intervening social workers?????

              proto jazz, i think it’s the 2nd variation in this longish piece, his last of many piano sonatas:

              anyway, more fitting for a lvb blog, but all sweetness & light, out-mozarts divine mozart:

              • yes to reading the diary perchance? i was a bit meh about ‘the last sonata’, but i reckon that the opus 97’s mercurial moods are what happened w/out the socialworkers, meds and shrinks.

                are comments there closed? if not, add away….

                • done.
                  a chacun son non disputandum.

                  • french and latin? translate if you would, please? and i checked; comments seem to be still open, fwiw.

                    and my silly stuff on jacqueline wabbit praying to the doggie altar? now…she’s praying to me thru the exterior door of the bedroom, lol. om mani padme wd….

                    • my mashup of “a chacun son gout” & “de gustibus non disputandum.”
                      to each his pleasure. no disputing (matters of) taste.

                      if i had one piece to take w/me to a desert island, i’d probably take the archduke trio. most people would say SNOOOOOOOOOOOOOZE.

  9. @ jason: dunno what i’d take, but as i’d said, there are so many moods, so many varied almost-visual-images within the music, i can see why you would. when i’d mentioned how complex it is, mr. wd noted that as some instruments go up a scale, some…go down. pretty cool. brilliant bastard.

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