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Good Mountain Press Monthly Digest #104
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~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
~~~~~~~~ In Memoriam: Kathryn Grayson (1922 - 2010) ~~~~
~~~~~~~~ "Showboat" ~~~~~
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

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~~~ GOOD MOUNTAIN PRESS DIGEST #104 Published April 1, 2010 ~~~
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Quote for the Easter Month of April:

When God takes something from your grasp, He's not punishing you, but merely opening your hands to receive something better. Concentrate on this sentence . .
Kristy Saunier (my source of the quote, Kristy's not sure who she got it from)

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THE GOOD MOUNTAIN PRESS DIGEST #104, April 2010
Archived Digests

             Table of Contents

1. April's Violet-n-Joey Cartoon
2. Honored Readers for April
3. On a Personal Note
4. Cajun Story
5. Recipe of the Month from Bobby Jeaux’s Kitchen: Red-Bean-Eggplant Étouffée:
6. Poem from Friday, January 19, 2010:"I am an irregular verb"
7. Reviews and Articles Added for April:

8. Commentary on the World
9. Closing Notes - our mailing list, locating books, unsubscribing to Digest
10. Gratitude

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THE GOOD MOUNTAIN PRESS DIGEST #104
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ARCHIVED DIGESTWORLD ISSUES ON THE WEB
 
~ ARCHIVED DIGESTWORLD ISSUES ~
2000: INAUGURAL YEAR: Jun  
#1 Jul  #2, Aug  #3, Sept  #4, Oct  #5, Nov  #6, Dec  #7
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1. April Violet-n-Joey CARTOON:
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For newcomers to the Digest, we have created a webpage of all the Violet-n-Joey cartoons! Check it out at: http://www.doyletics.com/vjtoons.htm Also note the rotating calendar and clock that follows just to the right of your mouse pointer as you scroll down the page. You'll also see the clock on the 404 Error page if you make a mistake typing a URL while on the doyletics.com website.

The Violet-n-Joey Cartoon page is been divided into two pages: one low-speed and one high-speed access. If you have Do NOT Have High-Speed Access, you may try this Link which will load much faster and will allow you to load one cartoon at a time. Use this one for High-Speed Access.

This month Violet and Joey learn about Forever.

#1 "Forever" at http://www.doyletics.com/images/022010jv.gif

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2. HONORED READERS FOR April:
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Each month we take time to thank two of our good readers of Good Mountain Press Digest, books and reviews. Here's our two worthy Honored Readers for this month. One of their names will be in the TO: address line of your email Digest notification. Our Honored Readers for April are:

Carol Fleischman in New Orleans

Kaisu Viikari in Finland

Congratulations, Carol and Kaisu !


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3. ON A PERSONAL NOTE:


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Out Our Way:

IN LIKE A LION

This year our March roared in with high winds and frigid weather with just enough breaks in the cold to allow the Japanese magnolias to bloom fully and the azaleas to break out into color. The St. Augustine grass is once more turning green and the blade on my Snapper Riding Mower will once more be turning rapidly to keep it trimmed once a week. So far we're enjoying the new wildflowers which populate our West Portico lawn, tall, spindly spikes with tiny flowers arrayed near the tops. Marvelous excuse for putting off warming up the Snapper for another week or so. I love to let the weeds grow rampant in March and April because I know from experience the joy St. Augustine experiences when he smothers these heretical weeds.

No weed-and-feed for me. All St. Augustine needs is New Orleans weather: warmth and rain and we're sure to get our bounty of 60 inches plus again this year as usual. This month we're sodding the East Portico lawn with St. Augustine grass now that the large horseshoe driveway is finished. The St. Aug sod is only slightly less expensive than the concrete, and there's 1200 square feet of St. Aug I won't have to cut every week in the height of the growing season when the grass grows 4 to 6" a week.

We drove through March's roaring wind and rain on the way home from our baby-sitting stint in Bellaire, TX, it lightened to drizzly and sometimes light but blustery rain till we reached the Baton Rouge area, when the rain stopped. We stopped in Prairieville and drove around till we found the PJ's there and had a latte together for the remainder of the trip home. This was the PJ's that my video game afficionado grandson, Collin, excitedly told me about a few weeks ago, having accompanied me on my daily trip to PJ's on several occasions. His revelation to me went something like this, "Grandpa! There's a PJ"s Coffeeshop in Prairieville now — right next to the Video Game Shop!" Hint, hint.

We got home exhausted about 12:30 pm and Pierre was waiting for us with problems and questions about our new bifold shutters. We had to discuss them again and on Tuesday we decided we wanted to fold completely out of windows, but to arrange it so the piano hinges are folded inside the shutters so that the hinges are not visible whether opened or closed. Who knew there were so many decisions to be made on shutters? We're still debating how to effect a secure closed position.

I went right from that decision process to getting ready for a massage by Laura Sampson, my pre-Katrina masseuse who moved to Georgia after the storm completely destroyed the Lakeview house that she and her husband had worked years to remodel. The bad March weather had migrated from Texas and was crossing over me as I drove across the river to my Metairie appointment: heavy rain and wind and colder weather. YUCK! Left at 2:45 with plenty time to get to appt at 3:15, normally. But bridge traffic was stuck so I got off at Earhart and it was backed up at the exit. Then again at Carrollton where the road work is going on. Then I got all the way to Villa Park Drive only be stuck behind a school bus stopping every 5 houses and moms with umbrellas slowly picking up kids. With all that I was only about 5 to 10 minutes late. Laura met me at the door and I gave her a hug.

"Remind me again," I asked her, "why did you postpone my massage appointment for 5 years?" She laughed, we both knew it was hurricane Katrina who did that number on our life. After the massage, Laura introduced me to her husband, John Schewe, whom I had not met before. Told him I hoped they came back and I wanted to be put on schedule for a massage every time they do come back. They are now living in a new house in Athens, Ga. where Laura grew up and went to University of Georgia. She has a sister and nephew nearby. They'll be back on some kind of regular basis I suspect. Weather was just as bad going home, maybe more windy and rainy, but my driving for the day, from Bellaire to Gretna to Metairie to Gretna was thankfully over. AH March!

March begins the march of festivals for Louisiana, especially the southern part of the state, like New Orleans' Algiers Point which leads off with its Friendship Festival on the Mississippi River levee across from the Old Point Bar. With Whiskey Jim singing song sounding like Kris Kristopherson one song, Willie Nelson the next, and who knows who the next one for a couple of hours. Lots of folks in St. Patrick green, drinking beers, BBQ'ing, kids sliding down the levee on cardboard sheets, and everyone enjoying the cool breezes and sunshine. Got a photo taken by our friend Gus of me and Del on the levee.

Have you had trouble finding blades for your razors at the supermarket or drugstores? I have. No sign of either of Gillette's latest blades, MACH3 or FUSION. Finally located them in Walgreen's Drugstore — they keep them in a locked cabinet and you have to press a button to get a clerk to come open the door. Obviously a high theft item. Each pack of blades has a sticker saying to report if these blades were bought anywhere except Walgreen's, so thieves must have been stealing them in bulk and selling them to Flea Markets, etc. Like Jack Daniels and other popular whiskeys at the A&P which also came to be locked away out of sight.


In March we planted a white flesh peach tree and a large Japanese Magnolia tree, plus a Boysenberry blackberry bush alongside our new blueberry bush planted earlier. The bushes are in the far southwestern edge of the lawn where they are assured of lots of sunlight. We added two knockout roses on the south side of the house and have a couple of cherry trees and some Pampas Grass for west lawn. In our vegetable garden I planted some tomatoes, eggplants, bell peppers, and green onions. Plus seeds for artichokes, snap beans, sunflowers, and cotton plants. Because I haven't cut the grass yet this year, the Spring wild flowers will get to finish blooming before I trim the lawn for the first time. We had these tall skinny spikes of blue flowers which we are filling our vases with that have volunteered to greet us this Spring in our new home — never saw these before at the former house only a block and a half away. The St. Augustine we sodded along the south and west lawn has not begun to grow tall, but it is greening up and getting ready. Our new horseshoe driveway is completed on the east lawn and will be sodded with Louisiana St. Augustine in the week after Easter. With the new gray shutters replacing the ugly dark green ones on the french doors of the east portico and our new beveled glass double door installed, the front of Timberlane will be considerably brightened and beautified.

Spring is a great time to be in New Orleans. Any time's a good time to be in New Orleans. I heard this song on WWOZ (90.7 FM or wwoz.org) but didn't catch the title or the songster, although she sounded like Billie Holiday.

When I go heaven
      to ponder all my sins
I know I'll have a good time
       but I'd rather be in New Orleans."

Here's a thought I had that was inspired by a Teaching Company college lecture:

Then: To be possessed by demons
      referred to the same thing which is called
Today: To be obsessed by passions.

Then: Authorities killed people
      possessed by demons
Today: Authorities exculpate people
      obsessed by passions,
      calling them innocent of their deeds
      by reason of insanity.

Here's a little technical stuff which I share for those who wondered if it's possible to record from their DVR's to a DVD. (Digital Video Recorders to Digital Video Disks) Yes, it's possible, given you have the right equipment. The challenge for me was to get this to work as an integrated part of my Screening Room without having to plug and unplug wires every time I did it.

With several important programs filling up my DVR Hard Drive space, I decided it was time for me to learn how to make a copy of a DVR recorded program onto a DVD. My first attempt crashed and burned, all the screens went blank. I also tried hooking up a line from the DVDR (Panasonic DVD Recorder) and nothing. But finally I got it to work and got a great image from DVDR onto the left Samsung LCD! Great! Next I took the line from DVR RF Output (formerly going to Ant B of KURO Plasma) and hooked it into the DVDR RF Input and lost all the normal channels on peripheral TVs (since the DVDR is the master spreader of cable). Then I finally turned the other five TVs to Ch 3 and got them working. On my second try got the HDMI into SAMSUNG LCD working, set it to HDMI/DVI (Input 1). After several hours of laying on the floor with a flashlight plugging, unplugging, and testing, I was able to copy successfully the programs from DVR to DVDs and save them for future use and free up the DVR for other recordings. With the spate of new High Definition channels, the DVR Hard Drive fills up much faster. It seems to hold about 30 hours of regular definition programs, but only about 6 hours of HD programs. The HD programs are copied in regular definition form to the DVDs on my set up (by virtue of recording the DVR-RF output, Channel 3 VHF), but the quality is excellent.

The back doorbell pushbutton had a broken cover and the front doorbell stuck in causing a raucous sound from the bell mechanism till you went and unstuck it. My first trip got door bell pushbuttons that didn't fit. I drove to Home Depot to return the two doorbell pushbuttons and buy a skinny one to fit the spot where the broken cover one is. The sticking one I took apart and fixed the sticking problem. The new pushbutton fits fine at the back door button, but when I took the old one off I noticed that it had a light behind the button and the new one didn't. By luck of draw, the insides were similar, so I decided to move the printed circuit board (PCB) with the tiny light bulb from the old button to the new button. The tiny PCB was too long. I could put a screw to attach one side okay, but I had to chop off and trimmed the other side of the PCB till both screws could fit in their holes and the end of the soldered wire of the light bulb touched the metal contact so the light would go on! Nice little 15 minute job to upgrade the pushbutton. Didn't see one skinny enough button at Home Depot with a light feature, but we have one anyway.

Some more technical stuff, to be skipped by those of you uninterested in computer stuff. One day I worked on getting links into some A Reader's Treasury reviews and I found that its index page, artrevs.htm, was giving me a 404Error, a missing page error. It took me awhile to find out what the problem was. Seems it has to be in both the root and \ART\ folders. Then I used a photo of me in white tie sans eyeglasses, cropped it, and saved it as both 2004rjm.jpg and 2004rjm.gif and the .jpg worked fine, but the .gif stopped displaying about 2/3rds down the image. Took a bunch of debugging to fix this problem. When I got the 404Error, I noticed that it was being quickly replaced by some astrology site. I didn't know if it was happening on other people's computers, but I endeavored to stop it on mine. at first I had no clue how to get rid of the hijacking of my 404error page. After some Google searching about hijacking (the technical name for unexpected webpage replacement), I removed the Google Toolbar, but no help. Still there. At least it led me to fix the artrevs.htm error for good and it no longer generated a 404Error.

Luckily the hijacking disappeared over night. Must have been due to the Google toolbar as that is the only change I made. Also the thumbnails of previously visited sites no longer come up when I try to open a new Tab in IE8. That was more of a hassle than a help as it took so long to wait for the thumbnails to fill out when I usually had the URL already to paste into the Tab. Sometimes less is more. After working on these technical problems for several hours, I went outside and helped Del get the leaks stopped on all the faucets outside. Some faucets simply needed the packing tightened to stop leaking, some leaks were from hoses without a good washer in their connectors.

During this blustery and chilly month, my friend Maxine Cassin died, about a week after her husband Joe. Joe was one of the survivors of the Bataan Death March on Okinawa, and Maxine had been married to him forty years. I went through my collection of poems from the New Orleans Poetry Forum looking for ones by Maxine and found a couple which I will share next month in my In Memoriam tribute to her. I called her the Poet Laureate of General Pershing Street — a gentle lady who will be sadly missed by poets of the New Orleans.

It's been a long time since I wrote three reviews in one month, but this month I managed the feat. One is a review of Samuel Butler's Notebooks, one I had first read about 28 years ago and I did the review and added to my A Reader's Treasury of previously read books. The two A Reader's Journal reviews are "The Mystery of the Two Jesus Children" and "Echoes of Other Worlds". Finally got finished reading these two books. The Nesfield-Cookson book is a nice complement to Edward Reaugh Smith's The Incredible Births of Jesus, filling out some areas and explaining others. Echoes is a book which carries my name as Author, among others. It is not a pirated book, but a piratey book, written by pirates and for pirates, a melange of poetry to enjoy and eerie stories to tremble by.

VISITORS TO TIMBERLANE

March was another busy month around here. First visitor was Del's brother Dan to work a real estate deal. Later our four Hatchett children came to town for a memorial service and it was great having them all together at Timberlane. (The four are shown in the banner image above between Del and me.) The older they get, the less frequently this confluence happens.

First our son John and his two boys, Collin and Kyle came to visit. Kyle all proud of breaking a wooden plank in his Karate class today. Then came son Jim with his kids, Amanda and Kirt. Then Stoney, Sue, and Sam. Kim came next with her young cousin Allison. We had a birthday party for Kyle and a chocolate Doberge cake and Breyer's Vanilla Ice Cream was de rigeur. Doris showed up about 5 and stayed until 8 pm. We had a great time. Allison Stewart is going to LSU in the fall and trying out for the Golden Girls. She was a true delight to have around. When she left on Sunday morning, I told her that in two years, I will be invited into the Golden Circle for the homecoming game for the 50th anniversary of my graduation, and I'm hoping she'll be with the Golden Girls that night. We'll both be golden, I said, and she gave me a big smile. I talked to her about how great the LSU campus was and I could already see the future love in her eyes for my wonderful alma mater. By the end of the month we heard back from Kim that Allison was selected for the Golden Girls squad.

We played a couple of Blokus games, Del, Kim, Kyle, and I. At one point, I tried to teach Doris how to play it, just the simple rules, and no matter how many times I repeated or tried to show her to play a piece by only touching corners of your own tiles, she kept attaching a side, like dominoes, I guess. It raises an unanswered question as the connection of this interesting process vis-a-vis her Alzheimer's Syndrome. Del catered the food and everyone had enough to eat: seafood gumbo, potato salad, sandwiches, veggie tray, and more.



The three boys, Stoney, John, and Jim left about 10 PM to head to Carrollton Station to hang with some old buddies from school days in Metairie, Todd Murphy, Norman Pineda, etal, and didn't return till about 3 am (4 am with Spring Forward). The next morning I had the rare opportunity to get photos of them all dressed in their Sunday best before they left for the service.

An idea occurred to me while watching the Hour of Power's new promotion which has a mountain in the background and a sea in the foreground with a large anchor. I began to see the mountain as a high wave and Del said, "Yes, the snow tops look like sea foam atop a wave." This led me to say,

"A mountain is a frozen wave of Earth."

Actually mountains only seem frozen to us humans, but in geological time frames, mountains are moving waves. My geologist daughter and professor, Carla, agreed with me, adding some technical details which I don't recall. And sometimes mountains move in human time frames, such as in Haiti and Chile recently.

On the morning of my son Rob's visit with his family, my trip to PJ's was punctuated by a starter failure on my Maxima. It acted exactly as if my battery were going dead, but I had had a new battery installed. I called AAA and they sent out the battery man and he confirmed it was likely the starter. Tow truck came to carry my Maxima to Brandt's. Abdul was my service rep. Super nice guy. My eyes opened up when he gave his name as Abdul, and I asked, "Do you make tents?" He laughed. Abdul the Tentmaker is a notorious Saints fan who writes music and talks on call-in radio a lot. Abdul said, "I'd like to have the money the Tentmaker makes!" I felt glad all morning in spite of the starter breaking. I had several seals and boots which needed replacing which I had been holding off doing till sometime when something actually broke. Plus when I got to the break room around 11, having missed my breakfast at home, there was one donut left in one of the three boxes and some hot coffee. It's my Lucky Day! I thought.

When the estimate came in, they did not charge me any labor for the starter because most of the labor would have been for removing the engine and the seals already required that. I asked Abdul to see about replacing the Timing Belt and he came back with some more good news: "You don't need a timing belt because this model has a very strong Timing Chain." Belts needed replacement about every 5 years, chains never. Abdul said the Maxima would be ready Monday or Tuesday. Then on Saturday morning, when Abdul called me, I shuddered — it could only be bad news, some other problem found. But Amen! Abdul! He said, "I'm having your car washed now, you can pick it up anytime. The parts came in the same day and the mechanic stayed late to finish all the repairs." Abdul is from Alexandria, Egypt. When we were waiting for the clerk to check me out, I asked Abdul if he went to the library when he lived there. "Yes" I said, "Great! Now I can say I know someone who actually read books in the Library of Alexandria!" He said there are still a lot Greeks living in the city, a very multi-cultural city.

My plans for the visit of our Indiana grandkids: City Park, Train Garden, Pfister Sisters Concert at City Park Twilight Concert; go early and visit the sculpture garden and new park features: lake and lawn, too. Maybe ride the kiddie train around the Park? Then eat at Casino before the concert. Well, life is what happens when you're making other plans. We did none of the above, but stayed home and our other daughter Maureen came to visit. We talked, walked on the Golf path at dusk, played bocce ball. Played one good Blokus game with Sierra showing Mo what to do and the two of them won. Emerson was fourth and I was third after Del. Del had gone shopping and came back after Rob's gang arrived with all kinds of Easter baskets and toys which I had to help assemble and figure out how to make the airplane go.

Rob brought his large robot Funny Car which he drove at high speeds out on the golf course at night with its spooky headlights on. The thing does 30 mph top speed and has titanium bumpers and aluminum underbody parts. The front end was a compound plastic which broke on his and Walden's and he's going to replace it with aluminum also next time. It went into the pond under two feet of water and came out still in running condition. All parts replaceable with lots of after market add-ons.

Rob, Kathryn and the three grandkids, Sierra, Walden, and Emerson left shortly after midnight to drive back to Bloomington. Apparently the driving is more fun when all three of the kids are asleep.

The next day I watched LSU Baseball and Football live on TV, a rare occasion to have both sports on TV at the same time. The football team had its Spring Game, the finale to the Spring Training. The baseball team, defending National Champs of 2009, played Tennessee, the only SEC team to win a series against LSU during our Championship run — this year we swept the series, 3 games to none. That night we took our daughter Maureen to the Broadway musical "Wicked" which was playing in New Orleans. And we closed out the last weekend on Sunday with a trip to the grand re-opening of Brechtel Park in New Orleans. We went with our Algiers Point friends, Gus and Annie to the Louisiana Philharmonic Orchestra's concert in the park. We picked up Subway sandwiches and ate at a picnic table, then moved to the front of the stage for the concert. It was still a bit chilly for a New Orleans March into April, but the weather was clear and dry and no one complained. After all, the air conditioners are still resting up for their long summer run coming up.

Mass of the Chrism

Closing out March, I took a break from the last minute crush of compiling all the activities and photos for this Digest and went to the Mass of the Chrism at the St. Louis Cathedral/Basilica in the French Quarter. It was a postcard pretty day. My drive down Decatur Street was detoured by police clearing the intersection of Iberville and Decatur for a Bruce Willis film being shot. We saw Willis being interviewed during the NBA game last night when our Hornets beat the Lakers handily, something that obviously didn't sit well with Willis the Bruce. (Bruce in Scottish means "strong" and if you saw any of his "Die Hard" movies, you'll know what I mean.) The movie is called "Red" and they were staging an automobile accident between a NOPD police car and something else as I passed. Saw them testing or taking after-accident shots of the police car spinning around on a turntable.

From the ridiculous, we segue to the divine. The Mass of the Chrism is when the sacred oils used in all of the Archdiocese of New Orleans are blessed in three 3-foot high sterling silver urns once a year and distributed to the various Deaneries. One of Del's cousins, Ron Caulkins, was there to receive the oils for the Deanery of Washington & St. Tammany Parishes. The three oils are the Oil of the Cathecums (used for Baptisms, rubbed on the chest prior to sprinkling of water), the Oil for Last Rites used for Healing and Blessing those who are very sick, and the Oil of the Chrism (used for Confirmation, Ordination, and anointing altars at new churches). I have only recently seen the blessing of a new altar and it is quite an impressive ceremony. Sacred oil is carefully poured out and rubbed over every inch of the altar. What makes it sacred? Consider this: the St. Louis Cathedral is the oldest cathedral in the United States, predating the Revolutionary Wary by nearly a century. During the ceremony of blessing the three oils, the oil left over from the previous year is poured into the three silver urns and new olive oil is poured on the top. Then the urns are blessed separately. In that intial pouring into the empty urns goes olive oil which contains remnants not only of the past year's oil, but small amounts of olive oil from each previous. Each year's oil is blessed by the addition of molecules of olive oil that are over three hundred years old! It is not the age that creates the special blessing, but the presence of bishops, priests, and parishioners during the centuries of previous blessings of the various components of the oils, to which is added the blessing of those at this morning's Mass of the Chrism. Anyone baptized, confirmed, ordained, or given last rites during this next year will have the presence of these hundreds of thousands of souls blessing them.

TILL NEXT MONTH

Till We May Meet Again, God Willing and River Don't Rise. April will be a dry, cool month of Easter, Riverfest in Algiers Point, Spring Festival and French Quarter Festival in the French Quarter, Shakespeare Society Annual Dinner at Antoine's and Crawfish Boils everywhere! So, if you don't live in New Orleans, you can always walk in the rain and stop to smell the first flowers of Spring. Whatever you do, make it a great April for yourself! ! !

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New Quotes Added to quotes.htm this month:

  • (SAMPLE) What frenzy has of late posssess'd the brain
    Though few can write, yet fewer can refrain."

    Samuel Garth ( 17th-century physician and poet ) US writer
  • New Stuff by Bobby Matherne:
  • Five Yes, and Even More Poems written by Bobby in 1998

    1. Yes, and Even More Design

    “Don’t you have a child born on this day?”
          Yes, and even more.
    “Even more? Two children?”
           Yes, and even more.
    “Even more?”
           Yes, a child of my imagination
          was born on this day.
    “Got a photo of this child?”
           Yes, see diagram at right:


    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
    NOTES on POEM:
    Yes, and Even More Design: I wrote this on January 14, 1998 at 6:30. The design came to me while I was in bed just waking up and thinking about adding some Yes, and Even More poemlets to the Good Mountain Press website. But I would need a background design. I remembered the Joy symbol I created back in 1980 and got up and drew the YAEM logo on the Timberlane Executive Dining Room table. Then I wrote this poemlet.
          My first child, Maureen Grace Matherne, was born on this day in 1962 in Baton Rouge, Louisiana and my youngest child, my only son, Robert Hilman Matherne, was born on this same day, exactly five years later in Metairie, Louisiana.
          The first letter of the logo spells JOY by combining the letters J O Y into one continuous symbol that may be drawn without lifting one’s pen from the page. I have since 1981 incorporated this symbol into my signature.

    ~^~

    2. Are You Satisfied?

    “Is honor satisfied?”

    What is the process
           specified by this question,
           the question Sigmund
           asked the Baron
           after Siggie won the duel?
    “The person that was done to
           does something back?”
    Yes, the aggrieved becomes
           the aggressor.
    “And then honor is satisfied?”
           Yes, and even more.
           “Even more?”
           Yes, the map becomes the territory.
           “I’m not satisfied.”
           Read the next poem.
          

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
    NOTES on POEM:
    Are You Satisfied?: I wrote this on May 2, 1998 about 9:06 PM in the Timberlane Screening Room while watching “The Seven Percent Solution” on Bravo, Cox Cable, Channel 40.

    ~^~

    3. Balancing the Scales

    In the physical world the territory comes first,
           then the map.
    “Right, what does that have to do
           with balancing the scales?”
    In the spiritual world the map comes first,
           then the territory.
    “Tell me more.”
    And that’s how the scales of karma
           can balance:
    The physical creates the territory
           according to the map
           of the spiritual
    And the spiritual creates the map
           according to the territory
           of the physical,
           and
    It All Happens At The Same Time.

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
    NOTES on POEM:
    Balancing the Scales: I wrote this on May 2, 1998 about 9:23 PM in the Timberlane Screening Room while watching “The Seven Percent Solution” on Bravo, Cox Cable, Channel 40.

           The doing becomes the un-doing: that’s the basic process of karma. What we do to someone to aggrieve them is later done to us. Our doing becomes our un-doing.
           Think of it with your you-future-you this way: What you do to aggrieve someone else in the physical world becomes a map in the spiritual world which takes on an independent existence and which hangs around attached to you until it has finally created the inverse process occurring to you, at which point its independent existence is dissolved. We mark that event by saying that “karma has been balanced” or that “honor is satisfied.” Honor is therefore “such stuff as dreams are made of” as Shakespeare so poetically put it.
    ~^~

    4. Dream Stuff

    Honor is “such stuff as dreams are made of”

    Process is “such stuff as dreams are made of”

    We are “such stuff as dreams are made of.”

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
    NOTES on POEM:

    Dream Stuff: I wrote this on May 2, 1998 about 9:50 PM in the Timberlane Screening Room while watching “The Seven Percent Solution” on Bravo, Cox Cable, Channel 40. The quote is from Shakespeare in the Tempest.

    PROSPERO. You do look, my son, in a mov'd sort,
    As if you were dismay'd; be cheerful, sir.
    Our revels now are ended. These our actors,
    As I foretold you, were all spirits, and
    Are melted into air, into thin air;
    And, like the baseless fabric of this vision,
    The cloud-capp'd towers, the gorgeous palaces,
    The solemn temples, the great globe itself,
    Yea, all which it inherit, shall dissolve,
    And, like this insubstantial pageant faded,
    Leave not a rack behind. We are such stuff
    As dreams are made on
    ; and our little life
    Is rounded with a sleep. Sir, I am vex'd;
    Bear with my weakness; my old brain is troubled;
    Be not disturb'd with my infirmity.
    If you be pleas'd, retire into my cell
    And there repose; a turn or two I'll walk
    To still my beating mind.

    ~^~

    5. Leaf Us Alone

    "Leaf us alone," Lucy and Ari say.

    They are doing onto others
           what they did onto themselves.

    They are keeping themselves in the leafing stage —
           short of the flowering stage
           which precedes the reproduction or
           seed-production stage.

    "Leave us alone, we say.

    We have leaved until we now want to be
           leafed, leaft, left alone.

    But we didn't know how to be all alone.
    We needed a lesson in process.

    Not someone to tell us — someone to show us how.

    Not someone born of woman on earth —
           they would be in the leafing stage.

    No, someone who was past the leafing stage,
           past the flowering stage,
           past the seed-producing stage.

    Not someone to hold us back,
           someone to show us the next step.

    No, someone to show us the way to grow beyond
           leafing, to flowering, to seeding,
           to sprouting.

    At the Louisiana Flower and Garden Show,
           I saw someone go past the flowering stage.

    "Can you help me get to the flowering stage?"

    I'll show you the way.

    "Are you on your way
           to the flowering stage again?"

    Yes, and Even More.

    "Even more?"

    Yes, walk this way and you'll find yourself
           in the sprouting stage.

    "I hear the flowers are beautiful this year."

    Yes, and even more.

    "Even more?"

    Yes, the seeds are sprouting.

    Leaf Us Alone: I wrote this on April 3, 1998 about 4:45 PM in the Timberlane porch swing. Written in the top and bottom margins of my first copy of The Gospel of St. John in Relation to Other Gospels by Rudolf Steiner.
           The theme is that Lucifer (Lucy) and Ahriman (Ari) are heavenly beings whose evolution halted at the leafing stage and were sent to Earth to do the same thing to humankind so that they may discover their individual "I" or Egohood. Once discovered some event had to occur just in time to prevent humans from being lost forever to spiritual world by becoming so enchanted by the leafing stage that they never rise to the flowering stage and continue their evolution.
           The one to perform that deed could not be born of a woman because he would necessarily be imbued with the enchantment of the leafing stage. It had to be someone who had gone through the leafing, flowering, seed-producing, and sprouting stage. Someone who would sacrifice everything to come to the abyss of Earth and show us the way to the next stage of our spiritual and Earthly evolution.
           That someone was Christ and the deed was His death on the Cross at Golgotha when His blood flowed into the Earth and began the flowering stage on Earth by filling it with his astral light. The Earth, "this great globe", at that point continued its previously suspended journey into "dissolving" and "leaving not a rack behind" — to becoming a Sun of Light."

    ~^~



    • New Stuff on the Internet:
    • Found in Google Library, this review of my Novel, The Spizznet File, by Dan Turner of Philadelphia.
      Did you ever sit outside on a summer's evening and watch bats dodging after unseen insects overhead? An insect-hunting bat is equipped with a brain the size of a pea, yet its sonar is far better than anything the US Navy has. Consider another animal that uses sonar: the dolphin. Instead of a pea sized brain, the dolphin has a bigger brain than man, and a substantial proportion of it is devoted to sophisticated echo-imaging. The Spizznet File develops the fictional theme that a dolphin's giant biological sonar is a transmitter-receiver used for communication as well as echo-imaging. I didn't say speech, because Bobby Matherne has coined a new term, "spizualize," for the projection of ideas by equipment specialized for sono-graphic imaging. Fiction models reality, and this book challenges us to interpret known facts about dolphins in intriguing new ways.
             Fiction also calls for a story. Here the speculative-science theme is tucked into an entertainment package that will make speculative stimulation a pleasure for Bobby's fans. (He has written several other books and has an on-line journal). I recommend you try the Spizznet File. It'll definitely impact how you think about dolphins. And there's a chance you may become a "Bobby Matherne" fan too!


    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    Movies we watched this past month:

    Notes about our movies: Many of the movies we watch are foreign movies with subtitles. After years of watching movies in foreign languages, Arabic, French, Swedish, German, British English, Russian, Spanish, Italian, Japanese, Chinese, and many other languages, sometimes two or three languages in the same movie, the subtitles have disappeared for us. If the movie is dubbed in English we go for the subtitles instead because we enjoy the live action and sounds of the real voices so much more than the dubbed. If you wonder where we get all these foreign movies from, the answer is simple: NetFlix. For a fixed price a month they mail us DVD movies from our on-line Queue, we watch them, pop them into a pre-paid mailer, and the postman effectively replaces all our gas-consuming and time-consuming trips to Blockbuster. To sign up for NetFlix, simply go to http://www.netflix.com/ and start adding all your requests for movies into your personal queue. If you've seen some in these movie blurbs, simply copy the name, click open your queue, and paste the name in the Search box on NetFlix and Select Add. Buy some popcorn and you're ready to Go to the Movies, 21st Century Style. You get to see your movies as the Director created them — NOT-edited for TV, in full-screen width, your own choice of subtitles, and all of the original dialogue. Often you get the Director's Cut Edition which adds back excellent footage that was cut from the theater releases.
    P. S. Look for HD/DVD format movies which are now available from NetFlix.
    Hits (Watch as soon as you can. A Don't Miss Hit is one you might otherwise ignore.):
    “Departures” (2006) follows the career of a young Japanese husband as he evolves from big city orchestra cello player to small country town encoffiner. The incredibly beautiful cello music accompanies the exquisitely graceful Japanese rite of preparation of a deceased body for burial or cremation in front of their loved ones. Makes the American undertaking service literally pale by comparison. A DON’T MISS HIT! ! !
    “The Third Man” (1949) made in post-war Vienna about Holly Martin’s friend, Harry Lime, who paid for a ticket for Holly to come to Vienna for a job and then had the audacity to die on the day before Holly (Joe Cotton) arrives. We know Orson Welles is going to play the key character Harry Lime, just as he was Citizen Kane, but who was the Third Man? And where’s Harry? Cue the Third Man Theme and roll the film? A DON’T MISS HIT! ! !
    “Chaos” (2005) Dramatic cop flick with Jason Statham and Wesley Snipes matching wits and other things as the plot unfolds. Great action and suspense. A DON’T MISS HIT ! ! !
    “Law Abiding Citizen” (2009) with Gerard Butler knocking heads and wits with Jamie Foxx in this tussle for moral high ground which became paradoxical the more people died along the way. Butler is gaining revenge for his family’s death while locked in solitary confinement, and the police are on a fruitless search for his outside accomplice. Gripping drama which stretches credulity to the breaking point until the very end. Don’t let anyone tell you about this one in advance and ignore any previews. Enough to tell you this is A DON’T MISS HIT ! ! !
    “It’s Complicated” (2009) if a woman divorced for ten years suddenly finds her husband insinuating himself in her life again, much less showing up naked on Skype while her boy friend in watching. Somehow Streep sorts out the wheat from chaff and her ex blows away. A DON’T MISS HIT ! ! !
    “9 ½ Weeks” (1986) wears well after 24 years. Kim Basinger and Mickey Rourke at their sexual and playfulness peak make this movie a classic. C’mon Blu Ray.
    “Love Happens” (2009) Aaron Eckhart and Jennifer Aniston spar in this unique love story, all the way to ending credits when, finally, love happens. A DON’T MISS HIT !!!
    “Public Enemies” (2009) tend to be lionized and remembered forever, like John Dillinger in this movie, while public benefactors like Robert Kearns in “Flash of Genius” tend to be forgotten.


    “Flash of Genius” (2008) Greg Kinnear stars as Robert Kearns in this true story of blatant theft of his invention by Ford Motor Co. who savaged his reputation and destroyed 12 years of his lifetime during which he fought to get them to admit their theft of his primary property. One can scarcely call justice his eventual victory in court. His invention has been used on every automobile made since and he got only a one-time settlement of $10 million. For lovers of volitional science, this is required reading. For innovators everywhere this is truly A DON’T MISS HIT !!!
    “Anita O'Day: The Life of a Jazz Singer” (2007) In the upper echelon of jazz singers with Ella Fitzgerald and Billie Holliday, Anita was the only white woman who could hold her own on any stage in Harlem. Gene Krupa, Stan Kenton, Roy Eldridge, Louis Armstrong, Hoagie Carmichael, were her peers. She once sang in a quartet where the other three voices were great saxophone players. During a tonsillectomy, the doctor slipped and slice off her uvula, and she learned to sing mostly eighth notes or vibrate her head to create a vocal tremor if she needed to hold a note.
    “Descending Angel” (1990) Eric Roberts (Michael) and Diane Lane are hot for each other’s body, but George C. Scott (Florian) her strict Romanian father stands an iron guard over her and his past deeds. Given the choice between dying and killing, which would you choose? That was his karma and his wife left when she discovered it. How can he reveal it to his only child? Bound by a Hollywood script, Michael cannot forgive Florian and destroys his own life.
    “The Time Traveler’s Wife” (2009) “When are you coming from?” Claire asks when her Henry appears from somewhen in time. Poignant love story which spans three generations of Henry’s family. Click Here to read my Review of the Book by Audrey Niffennegger A DON’T MISS HIT ! ! !
    “Firewall” (2006) is another Harrison Ford up against the wall of evil forces. As the holder of the key to bank security, he and his family become the target and things really get interesting near the end of the movie.
    “Reversible Errors” (2004) Long, satisfying movie with lots of intrigues and twists. Miniseries without commercials. Tom Selleck and Bill Macy star. A DON’T MISS HIT ! ! !
    “Jazz on a Summer’s Day” (1960) Did you miss the 1960 Newport Jazz Festival with Anita O’Day, Dinah Washington, Mahlia Jackson, Louis Armstrong and many others? Here’s your chance.

    “Thirteenth Floor” (1999) is a world within worlds sci-fi flick reminiscent of Fairhaven in the holodeck of Voyager with ideas from Matrix, Brainstorm, Time Traveler’s Wife, Vanilla Sky, The 12 Monkeys and others. The murder is real, but is the detective trying to solve it? And is the world in which he’s trying to solve it real or Memorex? Will our hero survive or be blown literally to bits? A DON’T MISS HIT! ! !
    “Four Christmases” (2008) are what Vince Vaughn and Reese Whitherspoon are stuck with: visits to all four separated parents, the serial "Visit from Hell", whose only salubrious outcome was a . . . well, that would telling.
    “Butterfly” (2003) about a waif whose mother leaves her alone after school and she befriends a butterfly collector in the apartment building. When the mother disappears for a day, the little girls begs to go on the Isabella butterfly collecting trip in the foothills of the Alps. A heart-tugging delight all the way through to A DON’T MISS HIT ! ! !
    “Lucky You” (2006) Eric Bana (Time Traveler’s Husband) is a working poker player in Las Vegas with unresolved dad-issues and Drew Barrymore brings some heart into his roller coaster existence. We’ve seen this three years ago (digest07b), but enjoyed it more this time. A DON’T MISS HIT ! ! !
    “Das Boot” (1981) Three and one half hours of undersea drama (1 hr added in 1997) following the new crew and the seasoned vets of a German submarine in the waning years of WWII when the Allies were fighting fiercely back to protect their shipping lanes. A DON’T MISS HIT ! ! !

    “Funny People” (2009) may be funny, but their lives aren’t and Adam Sandler plays a guy’s whose life sucks and he doesn’t find out till he’s diagnosed with terminal disease, but that doesn’t help either. Maybe he needs a real friend, but money can’t buy that, only stuff that isn’t important.
    “American Experience: Alexander Hamilton” (2006) was the only American Prime Minister as the first Secretary of the Treasury who handled all the foreign relation duties necessary to bootstrap the baby USA into a commercially viable country.
    “The Unknown Woman” (2006) Amazing adventure of a Ukrainian woman who survives the brutal sex trade and ends up in Rome looking for something. What we’re not sure, but her behavior becomes intriguingly enigmatic as events unfold. Definitely A DON’T MISS HIT ! ! !

    Misses (Avoid At All Costs): We attempted to watch these this month, but didn't make it all the way through on most of them. Awhile back when three AAAC horrors hit us in one night, I decided to add a sub-category to "Avoid at All Costs", namely, A DVD STOMPER. These are movies so bad, you don't want anyone else to get stuck watching them, so you want to stomp on the disks. That way, if everyone else who gets burnt by the movie does the same, soon no copies of the awful movie will be extant and the world will be better off.

    “Push” (2009) this DVD on the floor, scream as loud as you can until your aquarium busts its sides, have someone remove your memory of the two hours you wasted on the movie, and stomp this DVD into bits! You will have done to the DVD only a little of what the idiotic characters in the movie did to each other. A DVD Stomper! ! !
    “Closer” (204) Natalie Portman, Jude Law, Julia Roberts, Clive Owen star in a musical chairs clunker. We also saw it in 2004 — it still stinks. See blurb in digest054.

    Your call on these — your taste in movies may differ, but I liked them:


    “Flawless” (2007) was exactly that, a flawless diamond heist of all the world’s diamonds. Good script, great actor (Michael Caine), mediocre actress (Demi Moore), and only one flaw: the Hollywood message that it’s okay to steal from big corporations if you give it to poor people. C’mon, Hollywood! You steal admission fares from poor people and keep it for yourselves, do you not?
    “12 Monkeys” (1995) Bruce Willis and Brad Pitt — Willis aching, bullet-shot, and complaining and Pitt his hyperactive jolly best the whole movie. Funniest part for Brad to date. Hard to follow, complicated time travel yarn which unravels on its way to an unsatisfactory ending.
    “(500) Days of Summer” (2009) was about 499 days too many, but Autumn was nice. Shows clearly how to ruin one’s life by living in expectations instead of reality.
    “Funny People” (2009) may be funny, but their lives aren’t and Adam Sandler plays a guy’s whose life sucks and he doesn’t find out till he’s diagnosed with terminal disease, but that doesn’t help either. Maybe he needs a real friend, but money can’t buy that, only stuff that isn’t important.

    “The Informant!” (2009) AMD company employee Matt Damon steals 7, 9, 11 million dollars and informs on the top executives of large chemical companies fixing prices, but who can believe a pathological liar?
    “Inside Job” (2006) should be done on Clive Owen’s head to relieve the pressure of his “Be Perfect” driver and his overweening egotism. Another Hollywood message that theft is okay if it’s socially acceptable. I frankly don’t want to be part of a society which accepts theft for whatever reason. Isn’t our so-called government’s theft enough?


    == == == == == == == == == == == == == == == == == == == == == ==
    4. CAJUN STORY:
    == == == == == == == == == == == == == == == == == == == == == ==

    Thanks to Rich Katona for sending along the inspiration for this Cajun Story.

    Boudreaux knew Marie’s birthday was coming up, so he drove over to the city of Lafayette to look for something special for her at the big Cajun Mall. He didn’t know what he was going to get, but as he walked past Victoria 's Secret, an idea cane into his head, “Mais, Cher! Ah can got sumpin for Marie dat we can both enjoy!” So he went inside to purchase a sheer negligee for Marie.

    The sales lady showed him several possibilities that ranged in price from $250 to $500 — the more sheer, the higher the price.

    He wanted this to be a big present for Marie’s 50th birthday, so he chose the most expensive item, paid the $500, had it wrapped in a beautiful package before heading back to Breaux Bridge and home. He gave it immediately to Marie, and as she unwrapped it, he told her it cost $500 and was the most expensive and sheerest nightgown that Victoria’s Secret had in the store. She said, "It is beautiful — Thank You so much!" Boudreaux asked her to go upstairs, put it on, and model it for him.

    Upstairs the Marie thought to herself, “Mais, dis t’ing is so sheer that it might as well be nothing. Instead of putting on, Ah’ll just model naked for Boudreaux! Then Ah can return the nightgown tomorrow, and keep the $500 refund for myself.”

    She walked naked onto the balcony and struck a sexy pose. Boudreaux looked up and exclaimed, "Bon Dieu! You t'ink for 500 dollars dat dey could at least iron de wrinkles out!"



    == == == == == == == == == == == == == == == == == == == == == ==

    5. RECIPE of the MONTH for April, 2010 from Bobby Jeaux’s Kitchen:
    (click links to see photo of ingredients, preparation steps)
    = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = =

    Red-Bean-Eggplant Étouffée:

    Background on Red-Bean-Eggplant Étouffée:
    I first created this dish one day when I had an eggplant which needed to be used and I was ready to fix my Quick Red Beans & Rice dish. If you'll compare the image of that dish with the one at the right, you'll notice several large chunks of eggplant and some Portobello mushroom slices. The eggplant is cooked down or "smothered" in the onions before the red beans are added. This cooking down in onions is the origin of the name "étouffé", so far as I can tell. Regardless of the names, this is a delicious family and company meal in spite of its wash-day origins. The red beans and the rice complement each other to produce a perfect protein, so it is also a nutritious meal. My addition of the Portobello mushrooms give it an added flair and taste.

    Ingredients
    2 cans Van Camp's New Orleans style Red Kidney beans
    2 cans Trappeys Red Kidney Beans in Chili Sauce
    2 medium yellow onions
    1 bell pepper
    1 tsp chopped garlic
    1 large eggplant
    8 to 16 oz whole mushroom
    Bertolli's Extra Light Olive Oil
    1 bay leaf
    6 oz Portobello Mushrooms (optional)

    Preparation
    Peel eggplant. Slice 3/4s of eggplant into thin slices for early cooking and into chunks for late cooking. Place prepared eggplants in salted water to soak until ready to add them to pot.

    Chop mushrooms into about six pieces each to maintain texture. Separate mushrooms into two bowls for early cooking (for flavor) and late cooking (for texture). Chop yellow onions and bell pepper finely. Slice Portobellos into about 1/2 inch slices. Open cans of beans. Place late cooking ingredients aside as shown in this image .

    Early Cooking Instructions
    If you are in a hurry, simply slice all the eggplant thinly and add it all at the same time. The separation into early and late cooking phases provides a way of having lightly cooked chunks of eggplant and mushrooms. The timing of the late and early cooking requires some judgment and the times I give are only guidelines. If it sounds too complicated, cook it all in one batch the first few times before trying the early/late cooking cycles.

    Cover bottom of large pot with Extra Virgin Light (does not smoke) and turn fire on HIGH, add a spoon of chopped onions to pot, and when it begins sizzling, add the rest of the onions, bell pepper, and garlic. Stir constantly until the onions show first signs of browning or carmelizing. Add some liquid from the Trappey's beans to get the chili flavor into the cooking early. Add thinly sliced eggplants now, saute and stir mixing eggplant and onions together constantly. Add water from eggplant soaking bowls to keep onions from burning and then pour the rest of the eggplant water, but only enough to cook the stack of eggplant slices. See image of this stage of cooking. Cook on MEDIUM heat for about an hour, checking and stirring every 10 minutes or so. When the eggplants are cooked enough, mash the eggplant slices until they become a mush. This will also let you know that they've been cooked enough.

    Late Cooking Instructions
    Dump the contents of the red bean cans into the pot and stir well. Add leftover eggplant liquid to halfway in one can to dissolve the red bean juice, then dump into each of the other cans and then into the pot. Add the chunks of eggplant and cook for about 15 minutes or until the chunks are edible but still retain their shape. Then add the rest of the mushrooms and the Portobello mushrooms, if any. Stir new ingredients into étouffé. Reduce heat to simmer until ready to serve.

    Serving Suggestion
    This étouffé is not complete until it has been served over freshly steamed long grain and wild rice as shown in the image above. My recipe for that can be found in Dec. 2002 Digest. It's best to start the rice before cooking the étouffé. It takes about 35 minutes for the rice, so you can start the rice as you're chopping ingredients and the rice will be ready and still warm when the étouffé is done.

    Other options
    For additional taste and texture, add thickly sliced Portobello mushrooms at the very last, cooking only about 15 minutes long. The brussels sprout shown are a colorful and delicious accompaniement to this meal — simply boil them about ten minutes in salted water with olive oil dribbled on top.



    == == == == == == == == == == == == == == == == == == == == == ==
    6. POETRY by BOBBY from Friday, January 19, 2010:
    = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = =

    I am an irregular verb

    Other verbs follow, followed their rules,
           but I make, made up my rules
           as I go, went, have gone along.
    I am, was an irregular verb.

    Spreading my wings,
           I strive to boldly split an infinitive
           whenever I can, could.
    I am, was, have been an irregular verb.

    Not one who follows, followed the crowd,
           I see, saw, have seen my way around.
    I am, was an irregular verb.

    Not one to cuss lasciviously,
           I swear, swore, have sworn in private.
    I am, was, have been an irregular verb.

    Long as I can remember,
           I never forget, forgot, have forgotten myself.
    I am, was, have been an irregular verb.

    Thus will I always be, was, have been,
           Till Hell freezes, froze, has frozen over.
    I am, was, have been an irregular verb.

    == == == == == == == == == == == == == == == == == == == == == ==
    7. REVIEWS and ARTICLES for April:
    = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = =

    And for my Good Readers, here’s the new reviews and articles for this month. The ARJ2 ones are new additions to the top of A Reader’s Journal, Volume 2, Chronological List, and the ART ones to A Reader’s Treasury. NOTE: these Blurbs are condensations of the Full Reviews sans footnotes and many quoted passages.

    1.) ARJ2: Echoes from Other Worlds — An Anthology of Fiction in Two Parts by Wendy Esterling, Scott Goodrich, Kenneth King, Bobby Matherne, Shana L. Martin, Keith McGraw, Sharon Robb-Chism, Stephen Sanders, Pamala A. Williams and Kittye Williams

    Fill ye a cup o'hot buttered rum, pull up yer chair by the fire and enjoy these tales and songs of pirating and spirits from the other side, Maties! Blackbead has gathered these for ye to read and enjoy till ye can grab another ship and head out to sea for profit and fun. If ye be like Ol' Benny Hawkins, ye remember him, he'd be saying, "It's in me blood, the red rage, aye! It's in me blood." (Page 5)

    Er if ye be like Kittye Williams' surgeon's mate, ye remember him, he'd spend hours talking to a dolphin. "Surgeon's mate, pray, inform me of this tale I heard you tell yon fish. Tis a wild, unlikely story I do say; and perhaps twas my misunderstanding of your words. But tell me now, was that just a tale you crafted to keep yourself awake at your posts?" (Page 14)

    Er mayhaps like Stephen Sanders, yer dad was yer favorite pirate:

    [page 15]
           Dad, ye be me favorite pirate,
          And there's only one thing more to say:
          Not only do I thank ye with all of me heart
          But I'll join your crew any day!

    Er ye had a favorite compass rose like Master Robert James McGee. Let Shana L. Martin spin the yarn fer ye:


    [page 16]
          Of our love . . . a love so rare . . . that nothing on earth can compare!
          "Let this symbol be a sign, betwixt your heart and mine.
          Every chart you course, and map you see, know that you are not that far from me!"

    Er sign aboard the Frigate Grey Ghost, "Jest mayke yer mark in bloode here, Laddie!" directs the Cap'n Robespierre, after showing ye his get-out-o'gaol-free card from Bonny Prince Charles and proclaiming, "With me Letters of Marque, we'll sail over the shallows and over the depths and escape from the gallows if ever we're caught!" Ye'll shiver like storm-rocked timbers when he finishes with,

    [page 42]
    There be ships most elusive
          But none of them close
    For the Frigate we sail
          Be the mighty Grey Ghost!

    Er yer dream, like Stephen Sanders, turns into a nightmare and ye lift yerself up and pray to God to save yer soul, and ever the ocean rolls on . . .

    [page 43]
          My reality becomes enough
          My love finds a sweet, safe home
          My struggle triumphs to victory
          My legacy is born in a promise

           The ocean rolls on and on . . . .

    Er mayhaps ye were an honest and God-fearing blacksmith afore ye set sail o'er pirating seas like Pamala A. Williams' pirate.

    [page 46]
           "Aye, Sir. A pirate. But I was a blacksmith afore that. It's just that the king took everything I had in taxes. It was either pirate or go to the poor house. You seen them poor houses, Sir? Pitiful they is. A death sentence for sure.
           "And pirating isn't a death sentence?"
          "For most, I suppose. But it's also hope, Sir. And freedom."

    Er ye remember the saying that "all cats are black in the dark" and reckon there's several ways to take that, especially if ye been in cathouses in port, like in Stephen Sanders' tale of Donny Driver and the virtuous Miss Catherine Black who accused him of raping her. It was Neligan who saved Donny's scurvy arse that day in the Cap'n' quarters. 'Ow did John Neligan know that Donny had a tattoo on his chest? Tis a tale worth spending another night in port to hear to its end.

    Er, 'cuse, me Matey, is that a Christmas song I hear wafting from the dock? Bless me peg leg if it ain't Blackbead hisself like Lawrence Welk leading a pirate chorus, awaving bottles o' Indes rum, a-singing at the top o'their lungs.

    [page 71]
          Fifteen pirates loudly carols singing!
          Ho, ho, ho, and a bottle of rum!
          Christmas bells are merrily singing!
          Ho, ho, ho, and a bottle of rum!
          The crew is like a family this night,
          With food and drink we all delight,
          And presents that fit us all just right
          We welcome the Christ child to the Earth,
          With laughter and joy and peaceful mirth
          We sing His praises for all we're worth!
          Ho, ho, ho, and Merry Christmas to all! !

    Ah, Bless me, Boys, Methinks I've seen it all. Look! Up in the sky! Is that Billy "Badass" Barnes being taken for a ride? After a lifetime of snatching, the toughie's been snatched himself! This book’s filled with good yarns to fill the lonely hours and speed along the darkest evening. If ye’ve had yer fill, there’s one more tale to light the night. Stretch yer imagination and walk along with the Grim Reaper on his rounds. 'Twill open yer eyes to see the deeds he performs as he closes the eyes of many a mortal. Arh ye taking notes, Lad? Ye might be called to replace him one day.

    Tis a night we spent with the quick and dead and off to bed we head, but not afore we stamp in lead the way ye be a-snatchin' yer own copy o'this fine read. Listen to sounds from o'er the sea, Maties!
    Can it be echoes from other worlds?



    To Print Out the Review Go To:
    http://www.doyletics.com/arj/echoesfr.htm

    2.) ARJ2: The Mystery of the Two Jesus Children and the Descent of the Spirit of the Sun by Bernard Nesfield-Cookson

    For hundreds of years, established scientists held that the process of combustion occurred by the material phlogiston leaving the wood, e.g., when it is burned. All the evidence that began to pile up to the contrary was not enough for their hardened convictions, so the phlogiston theory thrived in spite of its many inconsistencies. Now we know the truth and we can smile at those respected scientists who were claiming that phlogiston was a substance with all the properties of what we would have to call, "negative oxygen," today! Oxygen combines with materials being burnt and if you weight all the combustion products, they will weigh more than the material did unburnt. Yes, it sounds silly to us who know the truth about oxygen which is added during combustion and we laugh at the idea that phlogiston is subtracted during combustion.

    Similarly, when the truth about the two Jesus children is revealed, we find that all the inconsistencies of the multiple accounts of Jesus's birth disappear. One cannot explain how one Jesus child could have two different birth accounts. It's as difficult to explain the presence of two different genealogies as to explain combustion by conjuring up phlogiston — it's very difficult and yet, as history proves, it's not impossible. Once an explanation is accepted, no matter how full of holes, a mindset arises to defend it against all comers.

    One need only read Thomas S. Kuhn's classical exposition of the subject in his The Structure of Scientific Revolutions to understand how pervasive such a mindset, which Kuhn labels a paradigm, can be. It was Kuhn who promoted the word paradigm from an obscure, seldom-used word meaning "model" to its ubiquitous usage to describe various mental encrustation of concepts we find in the world today. Using his word, we would say that the current paradigm for understanding the birth of Jesus is the various Bible accounts, mainly the Gospels of Matthew and Luke, suffers from bad translations.

    Talk to almost any theologian about this matter, and you will confront a spectacle about equivalent of that suffered by oxygen-thinking chemists when they tried to explain the errors made by phlogiston-thinking chemists to them. Likely you will be inundated with explanations and derision for your effort.

    It is with this caveat, I undertake to write this review about a book in which Bernard Nesfield-Cookson attempts to reveal the truth about the two Jesus children, an attempt which, if rightly understood, will overturn the clumsy and inaccurate paradigm which insists on only one Jesus child.

    This is the second book devoted to this subject that I have studied carefully. The first book was The Incredible Births of Jesus by Edward Reaugh Smith. Here are two scholars who have independently come to the same conclusion after studying the matter and argue for overturning the current paradigm of one Jesus child because it simply does not fit the facts.

    Does it not make sense that the greatest event in the history of the Earth, the birth of the man who would incarnate the great Sun Spirit, the Christ, into himself would be a special man? The process of incarnation by an ordinary human spirit into one's present lifetime, a process you went through, dear Reader, and I went through, involves several hundred years of selecting and monitoring one's ancestors, and following them down to the generation into which you have chosen to incarnate at exactly the right time to perform the deeds you have set for yourself. These deeds include the balancing of karma with those with whom you lived through previous incarnations, as well as new deeds chosen for the current world conditions. To provide the Hebrew man to become the receptacle required even more generations than usual, going back to King David himself (and further, in the Luke Gospel, to Adam). Two Hebrew men were prepared for the Christ, even though only one would receive the Christ: one man descended from the kingly line of David, King Solomon, and the other from the priestly line of David, Nathaniel. That both were named Jesus and had Joseph as his father and Mary as his mother is not remarkable given the popularity of the names at the time.

    The Jesus in the Gospel of Matthew has a genealogy that is traced back to Solomon and the Jesus in Luke back to Nathaniel. Clearly if the birth stories of these Gospels were of the same Jesus, the genealogies would have to be identical. The Solomon Jesus was born with the Ego of the great leader Zarathustra, who in pre-historical times of 6,000 B.C. taught the ancient Persians of Ahura Mazdao, the Sun Spirit, who resides in the Sun, who is invisible, has the rays of the Sun as His vestures. The Mystery School he founded trained its students to await the coming of the great Spirit which would be signaled by a Star in the East — these initiates when graduated were called Magi or Kings. It is their story which is narrated in the Gospel of Matthew. They visit the large house of Joseph and Mary, no mention is made of a humble stable or manger. After their son Jesus's birth, Herod orders all male babies killed, and so his parents flee with him to Egypt. Note that no mention of Egypt is made in the Luke Gospel, only in Matthew, in the story of the Solomon Jesus's birth and aftermath.

    The Jesus in the Gospel of Luke has a genealogy traced back to Nathaniel, and this Jesus was born in a humble stable or manger, while equally humble shepherds were guarding their flocks on the surrounding hillsides. Luke makes no report of them seeing the Great Star, nor of seeing the Magi -- rather they experience some ineffable phenomenon which they liken to a host of Angels singing and praising God, like a cordon of priests celebrating a High Mass singing Gregorian chants perhaps. This befits the Jesus descended from the priestly line of Nathaniel, a priest and son of David. These are the facts as presented in the two Gospels of Matthew and Luke.

    There is another salient fact which appears only in the Gospel of Luke, and it is the only event between birth and 29 years old which is narrated in the two Gospels of Luke and Matthew. Something important must be occurring spiritually to warrant relating this story, something whose importance has been lost over the two millennia since the event. That is the story of the Nathaniel Jesus staying behind in Jerusalem for several days and teaching the elders in the Temple.

    How could the Jesus of such humble beginnings, born in a manger, have come into this vast knowledge of the world that he could keep the wise men of the Temple in rapt attention, answering their many questions? Not one word of how this was possible is mentioned by Luke, except to relate that Jesus answered his mother saying, "Did you not know that I must be about my father's business?" Clearly it was not the business of carpentry that he was referring to, and therefore definitely not of Joseph's business. He could have only been referring to his Heavenly Father's business, the business which brought him to Earth, the business of being ready for the advent of the great Sun Spirit, the Christ, to enter him at his baptism in the Jordan, the event after which He would be named, Christ Jesus.

    How did the Matthew Jesus end up in Bethlehem? His father and mother evacuated to Egypt to escape the wrath of Herod upon their son, but when they returned, they apparently thought it best not to return to Bethlehem.

    [page 4] On their return from Egypt, however, instead of returning to Bethlehem the Solomon family took up residence in the rural community of Nazareth. Life there called for a number of adjustments on their part. In Bethlehem this family had enjoyed certain privileges due to education, wealth and social standing; in Nazareth, a close knit community, the Solomon family had to adjust to an ascetically simple lifestyle and relinquish the trappings of social privilege, if they were to live and work in harmony with the Nazarenes. We may then, perhaps, conjecture that the Solomon Joseph joined the Nathan Joseph in his carpenter's workshop, also that the educated and gifted Solomon Jesus boy would occasionally, or perhaps often, join the younger Nathan Jesus boy in the fields tending the sheep.

    How do we know that the Nathan Jesus was younger? Because Herod was prominently mentioned in the Matthew Gospel and only his son Herod Antipas is mentioned in the Luke Gospel.

    [page 8] . . . the Luke holy family were clearly in no hurry to flee from Israel, for according to the religious law of the people of Israel, it was ordained that, after giving birth to a man-child, a mother must go through a period of purification for 40 days: 'She shall touch no hallowing thing, nor come into the sanctuary, until the days of her purifying be fulfilled' (Leviticus 12:4) and, in the case of this holy family, there was no reason not to obey this law. Herod the Great's decree no longer threatened the life of the Jesus of the Nathan line for he had died before the child was born.

    We see clearly that there must be two different Jesus families: one which was forced to flee to Egypt because of Herod, and one which had to no need to flee because Herod was dead and they had every reason to stay put.

    There is a salient difference between the Matthew and Luke Mary which is captured and thus revealed in many classical paintings of the Madonna, and that difference Nesfield-Cookson delineates for us: the Matthew Mary is shown with an older Jesus standing or sitting on her lap whereas the Luke Mary is shown with a younger Jesus as a baby lying on his back. Consider the differences in how each Mary is portrayed in the two Gospels.

    [page 8, 9] We do not know who were the parents of the Mary of Luke's Gospel. Regardless of whether Mary grew up in Nazareth itself or in the verdant Galilean surroundings, we can picture her as a young girl growing up in an area which Emil Bock describes as being 'an earthly replica of the Garden of Paradise. . . . From Luke's Gospel we can sense that Mary was a pure and innocent young soul, imbued not with intellectual knowledge nurtured from early childhood by temple priests, but with a wisdom springing from a selfless, love-filled heart. In two places, following the Adoration of the Shepherds and after the twelve-year-old Jesus had been found in the temple, Luke's Gospel says: 'But Mary kept all these things, and pondered them in her heart' (2:19, 51).

    The Luke Mary led a hidden life in the small hamlet of Nazareth while the Matthew Mary led an open life in the cosmopolitan city of the time, Jerusalem. She was taken to the temple there by her parents when she was only three years old where she, a precocious young girl, was taught and grew in wisdom for about ten years. (Pages 9, 10) One can easily interpret "precocious" as an indication of an old soul.

    [page 10] Early on, the Mary of the Gospel of Matthew manifested as an 'old soul [. . .] she represents the polar opposite to the young Mary of the Gospel of Luke'.

    The author also reveals that the "ass" as a beast of burden represented the physical body of the human being whose task is to carry our higher human natures (soul and spirit) during our Earth existence. The image of Christ Jesus entering the holy city of Jerusalem riding on an ass represents the human body of Jesus carrying the Christ Spirit within it like the body of the ass is carrying a human being upon its back. These two levels of understanding had been intermixed in prophecies for hundreds of years before the event occurred in the time of Christ Jesus.

    [page 11] Rudolf Frieling reminds us, moreover, that the ass was always the symbol of the human physical nature, whose task it is to carry the human being's higher natures on earth. St Francis of Assisi called his body 'Brother ass'. The prophet Zechariah foretells that the Messiah will come riding on an ass (Zechariah 9:9), meaning that he would descend into the realm of corporeality. According to the Gospel of Matthew, Christ entered the holy city of Jerusalem riding on an ass (Matthew 21:5).

    In the Matthew Gospel, an angel appears to Joseph, the father of Jesus, whereas in the Luke Gospel, an angel appears to Mary. In Matthew the angel appears to tell Joseph to take his family to Egypt to escape Herod's persecution.

    In Luke the angel appears to tell Mary that her cousin is pregnant with a son. Mary, already pregnant herself, visits Elizabeth who greets her, telling Mary that she is twice blessed, one by the pre-Fall "male etheric body withheld from Eve" which had entered into Mary and two by pre-Fall virginal female etheric body withheld from Adam which was inside the Jesus baby in her womb.(1) It was this pre-Fall etheric body which made Mary a virgin, and gave to her the name Blessed Virgin for all time. Elizabeth's deed gave us the lines from ubiquitous Catholic prayer, the Hail Mary, "Blessed are Thou among women, and Blessed is the fruit of Thy Womb, Jesus." Elizabeth was acknowledging what she could see directly with her ancient clairvoyance in her old age, the two pre-Fall etheric bodies which formed her cousin Mary's body.

    [page 12] We then learn that the baby leapt for joy in Elisabeth's womb at the sound of Mary's greeting. What we see here is John the Baptist's instantaneous recognition of the significance of the child in Mary's womb.
          This momentous event — not mentioned by Matthew — foreshadows what was to take place 30 years later in the River Jordan, when John baptizes and recognizes Christ. He it is of whom John the Baptist has already declared: 'I indeed have baptized you with water, but he shall baptize you with the Holy Ghost' (Luke 3:16). In Matthew's Gospel we hear that when Jesus comes to John to be baptized, the Baptist exclaims that he rather needs to be baptized by Jesus Christ (3:13-14).

    To understand rightly the event known as the Mystery of Golgotha, how Christ came to the Earth, entered the body of Jesus of Nazareth, and died on the cross, one must understand that the Great Spirit — the one we have come to call Christ and have appended that name to Jesus, either as Christ Jesus or Jesus Christ — had been known for hundreds and thousands of years before Jesus was born, and that Christ Spirit had been approaching the Earth and had been worshiped from the beginning of human times. None other St. Augustine, the great church father himself, spoke of this as fact.

    [page 40] It has been mentioned already that in the early years of the twentieth century Rudolf Steiner spoke on many occasions of Christ as the Spirit of the Sun, and that over a long period of time this Spirit gradually descended out of the cosmic heights to incarnate in a physical body. For instance, he indicated this in a lecture in 1911. He quoted the following few words of St Augustine: 'That which we now call the Christian religion already existed among the ancients and was never absent from the beginning of the human race up to the time when Christ appeared in the flesh; from that time forward the true religion, which was already there, received the name of the Christian religion.'

    Essential to the Christ Spirit's appearing on Earth in the flesh were the Nathan and Solomon Jesus children. One was filled with grace and the other with the wisdom of the Magi.

    [page 47] Luke, in his Gospel, speaks of this child as being 'filled with wisdom and the grace of God was upon him. One could, perhaps, say that it was the kind of wisdom with which a person is endowed, who lives and works in harmonious communion with nature, a person who does not intellectually probe and analyze, but 'knows' with the forces of his heart. Thus in the Nathan Jesus we see a child with infinite depths of feeling, wisdom of the heart.
          In contrast to the Nathan child we could say that the Solomon Jesus child possessed the wisdom of the Magi, of the Three Wise Men from the East. 'He was an individuality of exceptional maturity, having profound understanding of the world, wisdom of the head.

    In a miraculous event in the Temple in Jerusalem, there would emerge one child, the Nathan Jesus who would later receive the Christ Spirit during his Baptism by John in the Jordan.

    [page 51] Steiner describes how, in the temple in Jerusalem, the Nathan Jesus child, all soul and heart, received into himself the spirit and thinking power of the Solomon Jesus child. As a consequence of this Mystery event, the Solomon child was depleted of his life-forces and died shortly after it had taken place. The Nathan Jesus, on the other hand, was now so wise that the learned men in the temple 'were amazed at his intelligence and the answers he gave' to their questions (Luke 2:47).94 The keenest capacities of wisdom of the head, of the brain, such as only a descendant of the house of Solomon could develop, were united with the purest love forces of the heart of the Nathan Child. The kingly and the priestly powers were united in the Nathan Jesus child and formed the chalice into which, 18 years later, at the Baptism by John in the River Jordan, the Christ Being descended or, as Luke describes this moment, 'the heaven was opened, and the Holy Ghost descended in a bodily shape like a dove upon him, and a voice came from heaven, which said, Thou art my beloved Son; in thee I am well pleased' (Luke 3:22).

    This three-day event in the Temple can be seen as an early initiation event for the Nathan Jesus during which his future mission is revealed to him.

    [page 51, 52] The twelve-year-old Nathan Jesus became aware of his future mission on earth during the three days in the temple. We remember that in answer to his mother's troubled questioning when he was found in the temple he answered her, according to Luke, with two questions: 'How is it that ye sought me? wist ye not that I must be about my Father's business?' His true Father, the twelve-year-old is saying, is not Joseph but God. He was already aware of the reality of the divine message which would issue from the heavenly heights at this baptism.

    The perfected human who was to become the earthen vessel of the Christ Spirit would have to combine the wisdom and reverence of the Magi with the humility and piety of the shepherds. The Two Jesus children would have to become One in the Temple, "and qualities that had been entirely inward [would become] outward." (Page 53) The process by which the two become one was first described by Rudolf Steiner in 1909 and is illustrated in the cover art of this book. It is from a painting by Bergognone which "shows Mary leading a second Jesus boy away, even while the twelve-year-old Nathan Jesus boy is still speaking from the podium." (Page 65) Why should we believe these are two Jesus boys? The author gives us a threefold reason.

    [page 65] First, Bergognone is not representing continuity within a story by depicting two or more actions of one and the same person, for the convention of continuous representation requires that actions that are separated chronologically must also be given their individual, separated spaces. Bergognone has not complied with this requirement. Indeed, as Ovason(2) points out, 'the device of continuous representation was outmoded by Bergognone's time'. Second, although the two boys resemble each other in appearance, they are not the same. The boy on the left of the picture, upon whom Mary is gazing down with loving concern, appears depleted of energy. We notice that both are clothed in red shifts. However, the shift of the boy leaving the temple is paler in colour than that of the twelve-year-old seated in the center. Both are making similar gestures, though those of the departing Jesus boy are much weaker; his left arm is not held up and outwards but, palm downwards, hanging limply towards the ground. This weakened gesture is reflected in his face. In comparison with the Jesus boy in the chair of the teacher, the departing boy appears wan and ailing. We notice, too, that the halo of this boy, the Solomon Jesus, is far less brilliant than that of the teaching Nathan Jesus. And, thirdly, the two Jesus boys are clearly aware of each other. In particular, we can recognize the bond between the two boys by the way in which the Nathan Jesus looks down upon the departing Solomon Jesus with what Ovason calls 'a strange mixture of love and wistfulness'.

    Rudolf Steiner gave his indications of the reality of the two Jesus children before any of the substantiating evidence found in the Dead Sea Scrolls and other apocryphal scriptures. He saw the events with his own native clairvoyance and his descriptions simply add details and veracity to the artworks of the Renaissance and other scriptures unearthed since Steiner's time.

    [page 65, 66] He [Ovason] goes on to say: 'The Solomon child seems to have sacrificed something of his spirit, something of his being to the Nathan child, and consequently is suffering.' According to Steiner the Solomon Jesus died very shortly after this event in the temple. It is clear that it is not solely the Nathan boy who is aware of his departing friend, for nearly all, if not all those learned men who a moment before had been discoursing with the twelve-year-old on the podium, now have their attention directed towards the boy who is about to leave the temple with Mary and Joseph.

    None of these descriptions, paintings, or scriptures can convince you that there were two Jesus children — it is a conclusion you only arrive at by carefully considering all the evidence as indicating a deeper reality than is commonly accepted by established historians, so-called experts of Christian artworks, and Church dogma as revealed to the public.

    [page 68] We have seen that the idea of two Jesus children, spoken about by Rudolf Steiner as early as 1909, is supported in some of the Christian apocryphal gospels, in Gnostic texts and, above all, in some of the Dead Sea Scrolls first discovered at Qumran. We have also seen that there was present a line of Essene secret teaching which continued within Christian circles and that a tradition of the existence of two Jesus children prevailed in Christian art up to the Renaissance. There is therefore some justification in seriously suggesting an affirmative answer to the question 'Were there two Jesus children?' — the one spoken of in Matthew's Gospel the other in that of Luke.

    "Were there two Jesus children?" can only have a personal answer to anyone studying the matter objectively and with spiritual insight. Simply saying, "Oh, that's foolish!" is not an answer to the question of whether there were two Jesus children as much as it is an expression of one's ignorance and willingness to remain ignorant on the matter. If you insist on rejecting the idea of two Jesus children, you will be in good company with the majority of the people in the world and that thought may be comforting, but you will be left with the unanswered questions posed by the dramatic discrepancies in the Gospels of Matthew and Luke. If you cavalierly ignore these differences you will have throw out one of the two Jesus babies with your bath water of indifference.

    Read the Full Review with Two Footnotes at:
    http://www.doyletics.com/arj/twomyste.htm

    3.) ART: The Notebooks of Samuel Butler by Samuel Butler

    Writing is a curious invention. In our age we take writing for granted — it has been around long before our modern age began. It is an invention which came to us at the advent of history — for without writing, there would be no history — thus history began when writing began. It is flat-out wrong to think of time before humans appeared when we say "prehistorical times". Humans existed for eons before writing began. Before humans learned to write things down, they seemed to do feats of incredible memory, such as reciting long poetic epics of Homer by heart. We say "by heart" to imply a feat of rote memory, but we have perforce no records made by those who actually performed these feats of recital. The only records we have were written by those who no longer possessed those abilities, and absent such abilities, they were forced to write down the epics of Homer and others. Some wise person wrote about the invention of writing, paraphrasing Plato, "The specific which you have discovered is an aid not to memory, but to reminiscence, and you give your disciples not truth, but only the semblance of truth; they will be hearers of many things and will have learned nothing; they will appear to be omniscient and will generally know nothing; they will be tiresome company, having the show of wisdom without the reality."

    Writing is a specific in that it is "something peculiarly adapted to its purpose, use or situation" (Webster's Unabridged). Plato lived in close proximity to the age when Homeric epics were being converted into writing which can be seen as an invention suitably adapted to replace the fading of ability to perceive epics and other realities in the spiritual world. This fading ability would make most humans unable to perform those epics today without flaw. Likely such performances only became public during the transitional time when the majority of humans had lost this so-called ability of memory — why perform what anyone can see on their own? This is what led Plato to write in his work, Phaedrus, "For this invention [writing] will produce forgetfulness in the minds of those who learn to use it, because they will not practise their memory. Their trust in writing, produced by external characters which are no part of themselves, will discourage the use of their own memory within them." Either writing was the cause of this loss of memory, as Plato hints, or writing was adaptation to the loss of memory. The latter is how I understand it, and one can only decide in one's own mind which one it was. To me, Plato was railing against the "dying of the light" in himself and was forced to express his displeasure using the very invention he was caviling against.

    It is at best disingenuous for a human to decry the action of writing while writing, so there must have been some deep truth that Plato sought to pass on to future generations about a pervasive change in human nature, some evolution of consciousness which he could still perceive and which he hoped to describe to future generations who would likely have become inured to their new condition and otherwise unable to understand the way humans thought before the invention of writing. The very word "other-wise" seem to imply we can become "other than wise" about our own origins.

    Writing is what Samuel Butler did in his notebooks and this book is an edited collection of his vast collection of notes written in these books over the years. After reading and enjoying the notebooks of Joseph Joubert so much, I bought this book and read it right away. Like Joubert in his notebooks, Butler provides us with "a ladder of the mind, a ladder with rungs."

    To me, as a child, the act of catching a bird by putting salt on its tail seemed ludicrous, and no one could tell me why such a saying existed. A bird could fly away so fast that one couldn't get close enough with a salt shaker to sprinkle salt on its tail. Finally I decided that if one could get close enough to put salt on a bird's tail, one could just grab it, and that reality was what the old saying was designed to convey. If I had read Butler's notebook during my search for understanding, I would have acquired a step up because he provides a ladder with a rung, "One's thoughts fly so fast that one must shoot them; it is no use trying to put salt on their tails." This describes his reason for writing notes.

    [page i, Preface] Early in his life Samuel Butler began to carry a notebook and to write down in it anything he wanted to remember; it might be something he heard some one say, more commonly it was something he said himself.

    In one of his notes, Butler writes, "A man may make, as it were, cash entries of himself in a day-book, but the entries in the ledger and the balancing of the accounts should be done by others." His notes were transcribed into his day-book or journal and found their way, carefully edited, into this book, a ledger of sorts. A man may make, as it were, cash entries of himself in a day-book, but the entries in the ledger and the balancing of the accounts will be done later by others.

    Some of his entries drink like clear spring water, "My days run through me as water through a sieve" and some linger on the palate like a vintage wine, "Life is the art of drawing sufficient conclusions from insufficient premises"; some are humorous, "Lizards generally seem to have lost their tails by the time they reach middle life. So have most men." and some talk about humor, "A sense of humor keen enough to show a man his own absurdities, as well as those of other people, will keep him from the commission of all sins, or nearly all, save those that are worth committing." (Page 11 quotes)

    Physicists in our time bandy the word "universe" around as if it were a shuttlecock or a billiard ball, one of their academic playthings about which laymen are incapable of having important opinions. The universe is entirely made of atoms, for example, one might hear, or perhaps, there are multiple universes. Reading physics today in popular books is like a trip with Alice down the Rabbit Hole where anything you believe is possible becomes possible and you might hear of "six impossible things before breakfast", like cutting off a bit of the universe and putting it in some place outside of the universe.

    [page 84] The idea of an indivisible, ultimate atom is inconceivable by the lay mind. If we can conceive an idea of the atom at all, we can conceive it as capable of being cut in half; indeed, we cannot conceive it at all unless we so conceive it. The only true atom, the only thing which we cannot subdivide and cut in half, is the universe. We cannot cut a bit off the universe and put it somewhere else. Therefore, the universe is a true atom and, indeed, is the smallest piece of indivisible matter which our minds can conceive; and they cannot conceive it any more than they can the indivisible: ultimate atom.

    If you put something off long enough, you don't have to do it. Those words resonated immediately with me in the summer 1961 when my German professor shared her ad hoc philosophy of procrastination with our class. Over the years, I have often thought about her adage, and finally embodied it, some forty years later, as one of my basic rules.

    Gradually I came to understand that this rule was a way that my Cajun ancestors lived their lives, and I was imbued with processes based on it. For example, somebody dumps a big bag of hot, steaming boiled crawfish on the table in the middle of you and your four brothers. Do you act polite and eat the smallest, puniest crawfish first or do you pick out the largest, tastiest ones first, leaving the scrawny ones till last? Clearly, we Cajuns always go for the largest or best looking crawfish first. Similarly when eating cherries out of a bowl, do you eat the plumpest, dark red, one first? Naturally — at least it was to me. So it tickled me to find Butler talking about that process which I found so valuable a part of my life: eat the best and biggest first, and put off unpleasant jobs as long as possible.

    After all, you might not survive to eat the best cherries or to ever tackle the dirty jobs. The ultimate of this process was epitomized for me by a very old man I heard proclaim, "I've stopped buying green bananas."

    [page 99] Always eat grapes downward — that is, always eat the best grape first; in this way there will be none better left on the bunch, and each grape will seem good down to the last. If you eat the other way, you will not have a good grape in the lot. Besides, you will be tempting Providence to kill you before you come to the best. . . . In New Zealand for a long time I had to do the washing-up after each meal. I used to do the knives first, for it might please God to take me before I came to the forks, and then what a sell [RJM: disappointment] it would have been to have done the forks rather than the knives!

    Someone once said, "A scholar is someone who remembers one's sources." Unfortunately, that was before I became a scholar and I didn't catch the name. Attributing sources in writing is a lot easier than in music, because of the very nature of quoting: in writing one can attribute the source of the quote in writing because one is already writing, but in music one can only quote in music itself and cannot interrupt the music to provide a footnote or easily attribute the quote in writing, speaking, or whatever. Butler noticed this phenomenon and wrote cogently on it as it applies to music and painting:

    [page 123] In books it is easy to make mention of the forgotten dead to whom we are indebted, and to acknowledge an obligation at the same time and place we incur it. The more original a writer is, the more pleasure will he take in calling attention to the forgotten work of those who have gone before him. The conventions of painting and music, on the other hand, while they admit of borrowing no less freely than literature does, do not admit of acknowledgment; it is impossible to interrupt a piece of music, or paint some words upon a picture to explain that the composer or painter was at such and such a point indebted to such and such a source for his inspiration, but it not less impossible to avoid occasionally borrowing, or rather taking, for there is no need of euphemism, from earlier work. Where, then, is the line to be drawn between lawful and unlawful adoption of what has been done by others? This question is such a nice one that there are almost as many opinions upon it as there are painters and musicians.

    While pondering this dilemma a few decades ago, I began a series of poems in which I endeavored to record at the bottom of each poem, the date I wrote it, where I was at the time, and every source of inspiration I was aware of at the time. For myself, I am not sure whether the poetic form worked or not, but it had a charm which yet attracts me, if no one else. Somehow I managed to incorporate the sources of inspiration into the art work of poetry itself. At times, poems broke out in the middle of my descriptive notes about a poem! Perhaps it is the attributing of sources for musicians and painters that Butler was thinking of when he said, "entries in the ledger and the balancing of the accounts should be done by others". If a painter had to attribute the sources for how she blends her oils to form the color of the Baltic Sea, it could require an interruption of her painting to write a treatise likely long enough to cause her to have amnesia for her reason for painting that sea in the first place!

    For a long time I had posted a cartoon showing a blonde floozy being shown a prospective home by a real estate agent. She stared at empty bookshelves on all the walls and asked, "What kind of a freak lived here?" On another shelf edge I had posted this sign, Caveat Homo Unis Libri, which I understand to mean Beware of the Man of One Book, sort of a counterweight to the attitude of the blonde of the cartoon. Butler was called by Trübner, his book agent, "a homo unis libri," (Page 155) referring to the one book Butler had written by then, Erewhon. Butler's view towards writing is a lot like my own. When Trübner said he was in a very solitary position, Butler said it suited him.

    [155] "I pay my way; when I was with you before, I never owed you money; you find me now not owing my publisher money, but my publisher in debt to me; I never owe so much as a tailor's bill . . . I live very quietly and cheaply, but it suits my health and my tastes, and I have no acquaintances but those I value. My friends stick by me. If I was to get in with these literary and scientific people I should hate them and they me. . . . Of course I don't expect to get on in a commercial sense at present, I do not go the right way to work for this; but I am going the right way to secure a lasting reputation and this is what I do care for. A man cannot have both, he must make up his mind which he is going for.

    For myself, I cannot think of anything more boring than doing a book tour, sleeping in a different hotel room every night, facing a queue of readers eager for me to sign their book in a different city every day — how much better if they and I spent that time actually reading another book than doting upon one already written. I love reading and writing too much to spend time doing other things.

    [Page 157] If I die prematurely, at any rate I shall be saved from being bored by my own success.

    Among the words so overused as to have become meaningless in our twenty-first century, I count "inspiration". Even the most mundane idea is tossed off as inspiration, as in, "At the last second we had an inspiration to order pizza." Butler sets the matter right for me.

    [page 179] Inspiration is never genuine if it is known as inspiration at the time. True inspiration always steals on a person; its importance not being fully recognized for some time. So men of genius always escape their own immediate belongings, and indeed generally their own age.

    This is particularly the case for true art which often is ugly when it first appears, betraying no sign of inspiration so much as "bad taste", as most critics of early Picasso's work would have proclaimed. Art, rightly understood, is not the process of creation, but of destruction. Some day that may be credited to me as an inspiration, but for my part, it is still too soon to tell.

    Do not many people today think of their own death in terms of agony, sadness, and the extinction of their being, in spite of the claims of others that there is a world beyond our life in this physical existence? Butler has us go inside the perspective of a living baby in the womb and consider what birth must seem like to it.

    [page 289] Refer to the agony and settled melancholy with which unborn children in the womb regard birth as the extinction of their being, and how some declare that there is a world beyond the womb and others deny this. "We must all one day be born," "Birth is certain" and so on, just as we say of death.

    Much of the depression and sadness people experience as their life draws to a close at whatever age can be seen to be similar to the last stages of the gestation process, what Otto Rank called "the trauma of birth" and wrote an eponymous book on the subject.

    In the quoted passage below is one of the greatest statements ever made about science, in my opinion, "science, after all, is only an expression for our ignorance of our own ignorance." What do we really know about the quantum mechanical world? We have equations to express our ignorance about quantum events, but they describe only the probabilities of events, not the events themselves. Our greatest scientific equations are but expressions of our ignorance of our ignorance. The happiest person in the kingdom is the fool because he is blithely unaware of his own ignorance.

    [page 339] Science is being daily more and more personified and anthropomorphized into a god. By and by they will say that science took our nature upon him, and sent down his only begotten son, Charles Darwin, or Huxley, into the world so that those who believe in him, etc.; and they will burn people for saying that science, after all, is only an expression of our ignorance of our own ignorance.

    Butler, like Thoreau, never strayed into a field in which he "did not find a flower worth the finding" (Page 375), and, also like Thoreau, he shared it with his day-book or Journal and us. From the bounty in this book of Butler's collected flowers, I have selected a few to place into a vase for your enjoyment. May they inspire you to take a solitary walk in the field from which I picked them.

    Read the Full Review with 9 Footnotes at:
    http://www.doyletics.com/art/sbnobook.htm

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    I hear often from my Good Readers that they have bought books after reading my book reviews. Keep reading, folks! As I like to remind you, to obtain more information on what's in these books, buy and read the books — for less information, read the reviews.


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    8. COMMENTARY:
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    In this section I like to comment on events in the world, in my life, and in my readings which have come up during the month. These are things I might have shared with you in person, if we had had the opportunity to coverse during the month. If we did, then you may recognize my words. If I say some things here which upset you, rest assured that you may skip over these for the very reason that I would likely have not brought up the subject to spoil our time together in person.

    1. Padre Filius Reads a Meeting Sign this Month:

    Padre Filius, the cartoon character created by your intrepid editor and would-be cartoonist, will appear from time to time in this Section of the Digest to share us on some amusing or enlightening aspect of the world he observes during his peregrinations.

    This month the good Padre reads a Sign Announcing a Meeting with the Dalai Lama.


    2.Comments from Readers:
    • EMAIL Tidbit submitted by Terry:
      I was going to write an article called "The Subjugation of the American Male", but my wife wouldn't let me.
            Terry

      RJM Reply: Okay, Terry, but if you do write that article, send it to me and I'll see if my wife will let me publish it!
             Bobby

    • EMAIL from Steve Sanders aka Blackbead replying about my review of Echoes:
      Subject: Re: AAARGH ! ! ! Shiver me timbers, if that ain't a review o' Echoes of Other Worlds !!!

      An incredible review from an incredible reviewer! This link will now go out to all the authors!

      Thank ye, thank ye, THANK YE!

      Dang! Gotta run!
      Thank you again, mate!
      Blackbead

    • EMAIL from Grace in Indiana:
      Bobby,

      Thank you for making Rudolf Steiner's experiential philosophy available on the web. I was very excited as I read the underpinnings of anthroposophy. Much valuable experience/thinking/writing is difficult to find in book stores these days. I practice yoga and have interests in the thread running through all great religions, through history, and through individual lives. All is threaded together in one great net. All weaves and is woven.

      Grace
      ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
      Dear Grace, Thanks for the nice word. I'll send you an invite to receive our monthly Digest Reminder email. Bobby

    • EMAIL (excerpt) from Panos in Missouri:
      Dear Bobby,

      Thank you so much for providing Doyletics for free and giving the world such a wonderful gift. I have been on a search for the structure of the mind and a way to overcome my own limitations for 4 years now. Your site came as it would at a perfect time, as I was asking how to overcome these imprinted limitations. I have begun using it and have already benefited from the Speed Trace.

    • EMAIL from Betty in Kentucky about our Super Bowl Digest:
      Well, this was just full of excitement, fun, parties, celebration and "good times". I meant to call you about the Super Bowl, but I get lost with time and travels for work etc. That was such an awesome game, no doubt! I love the pictures of you and Del, but also enjoy your family and friends--we can't do without them! When is the cruise and were are you going? I just got back from 5 days in Vegas and had a great time.
      Luv ya, Betty
    • EMAIL from Dr. Kaisu Viikari, an Eye Doctor in Turku, Finland about her Testament:

      Dear Bobby,
             When I imagined my being at the gate of heaven last night, I pondered thousands of times who would wake up mankind to consciousness of this enormous tragedy and take care of spreading the good news to the world about how to prevent 99% of cases of myopia and its attendant ills?
            After me — nobody is coming to open the eyes of the world and I do not know who could do it better than you as a writer. The burden that mankind is lugging along, in the deficiency of plus diopters (or the diopters in that direction), is immeasurable. [Note: plus diopters means reading glass lenses]
             It is, if not the biggest, one of the biggest scourges of mankind — which we can not expect a rank-and-filer [non-eye-doctor] to understand, even those educated to it [eye doctors], as you know.
             And my thinking has nothing to do with monomanical ambition, I´m only anxious when I think that my research work and findings would once again fade away, not only for centuries, but perhaps for ever.
             And so I beg you to begin to think words for that mission!
             Kaisu
      ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
      My review of your work, Dr. Viikari, will remain on the world-wide web indefinitely and ensure access to your amazing work in helping humans rid themselves of the scourges which attend the wearing of minus lenses (negative Diopters) while doing reading and close work, especially young children!.

      NOTE to my Good Readers: Babies should not be kept in playpens or baby beds when awake and should not under any circumstances have mobiles hanging in front of their eyes causing them to focus closer than 10 to 20 feet. The detriment to their eyes shows up only in later years. With only 1 in 1,000 people with true myopia or nearsightness and yet over 50% of the populations wearing minus lenses, one would call this an EPIDEMIC, if the matter were truly understood, the very matter and cure which Dr. Viikari, MD, PhD Opthalmologist, laid out so brilliantly in her small handbood, Understanding and Preventing Myopia. Want to ensure your child will be diagnosed later myopic and fitted with negative lenses? Hang mobiles in their crib to keep them busy while you're not around. Want a healthy child without nearsightness at age 15? Toss the mobiles, hanging trinket, toys in the crib or playpen, etc, in the garbage bin of history. And as soon as you give them crayons to color with, put reading glasses (plus lenses: +1, +2, +3 D) on them. (Plus glasses are the correction for hyperopia or farsightedness, meaning using plus glasses as distant glasses, as well as a help for reading in presbyopia, the typical old age sight problem.) Put these plus glasses on your children as soon as they begin to do close work and they will grow up to be healthier adults and won't be so unhappy with their headaches, vertical frowns, migraines, and other eye problems caused by constant accommodation strain that they become as suicidal as some of Dr. Viikari's patients were before she helped them grow out of their negative lenses bad habits.

    • EMAIL from Renee about The Two Jesus Children review in this Digest:
      Dear Bobby,

      This paragraph, particularly the highlighted sentence, is describing something very profound but something that I am missing. What is the correlation between the pre-Fall etheric bodies and the virginity of Mary?

      In Luke the angel appears to tell Mary that her cousin is pregnant with a son. Mary, already pregnant herself, visits Elizabeth who greets her, telling Mary that she is twice blessed, one by the pre-Fall "male etheric body withheld from Eve" which had entered into Mary and two by pre-Fall virginal female etheric body withheld from Adam which was inside the Jesus baby in her womb.(1) It was this pre-Fall etheric body which made Mary a virgin, and gave to her the name Blessed Virgin for all time. Elizabeth's deed gave us the lines from ubiquitous Catholic prayer, the Hail Mary, "Blessed are Thou among women, and Blessed is the fruit of Thy Womb, Jesus." Elizabeth was acknowledging what she could see directly with her ancient clairvoyance in her old age, the two pre-Fall etheric bodies which formed her cousin Mary's body.

      Great review. Thanks for sending it!
      Renee

      ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
      Bobby's Reply to Renee Lattimore in New Orleans, La:
      Dear Renee,

      Thanks for your early reading of this review. Glad you enjoyed it. You ask a good question and it is the most important aspect of how Mary's virginity came to be.
             How can a woman have a baby and still be a virgin? No one in religious circles ever answers it fully, they throw some lip-service to it and brush off the question.
             The Tree of Knowledge and the Tree of Life are described in Genesis. In the story, Eve and Adam eat from the Tree of Knowledge, but the other tree, the Tree of Life is left untouched in a far region of Eden.
             That far region is the spiritual world where the etheric bodies of Adam and Eve reside — these bodies make up the Tree of Life. These are copies of their etheric bodies BEFORE they ate from the Tree of Knowledge, therefore before sex was invented: thus, these bodies are virginal by definition, they have never known sexual activity in any form. It was by Mary's having this virginal body which made her the Blessed Virgin and the perfect receptacle to hold the gestating body of Jesus who also contains the other virginal body from the Tree of Life.
             Thus the words of the Hail Mary are fraught with deep spiritual meaning when we pray,
             "Hail Mary, Full of Grace,
      Blessed are Thou amongst Women
             and blessed is the Fruit of Thy Womb, Jesus."
             Each "blessed" describes one of the pre-Fall etheric bodies.
             We are recognizing the Tree of Life which was held in sanctity in the etheric plane waiting for the truly Blessed event of the pregnancy of the Nathan Mary, from which the body of the Jesus who will die on the Cross will be born.

    • EMAIL from Kevin Dann in NYC:
      Hello Bobby,

      Oh my! I just realized I never thanked you & Del for sending me birthday wishes; the first bit of mail that I received here at my new home! Thanks so much.
             And thanks so much for continuing to shower us with your motherwit and wisdom. Heck, if you can survive my emails, I can survive yours!
             Jordan, my daughter, has been making great waves down here in the Big Apple; today's New York Times has a little glimpse of her life:
             http://www.nytimes.com/2010/03/29/nyregion/29roommates.html?pagewanted=1&hp
             Yours,
             Kevin

    • EMAIL from son Robert in Indiana about Blast from Past photo below:

      Holy Crayola... dat be you?

      Nice pic!!! Will save this one.

      Paul's in Westwego?

      ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
      Bobby's Reply:

      Yep! Across the street was Paul's Motors which in the 1950s sold Kaisers, Frazers, and the very FIRST compact car the "Henry J" — all made by the Kaiser Corp. Got a PENNY-a-mile mileage, 30 mpg on .30 a gallon gas. Use the order of magnitude upscale that would be $3.00 a gallon today and guess what? We're almost there! Gasoline has not risen as much as theater tickets in the same time frame. .20 versus $7 a ticket.
      Dad

    3. Claustrophobia: Tests or Cures?


    NOTE: I wrote this message to my friends on the World-Wide Doyletics List"

          I recently finished a Teaching Co. course on World War II and encountered an interested phrase as the lecturer was describing the preparation they did for B-17 Bomber Crews. "They were tested for claustrophobia." The implication was that, if they had claustrophobia, they were eliminated from the bomber crew position.
           Most of you know, by now, or should know if you've read much of the doyletics material, that it is as easy to remove doyles of claustrophobia as it is to test for them. Whatever way Army Air Force tested potential candidates for claustrophobia, they would have had to trigger doyles which would be obvious both to the trainee and the trainer. Given a short course in doing the Speed Trace, trainers would have been able, once the doyles were triggered, to lead the trainee down their time marks (which at ages 18 to 25 would not have taken very long.)
           After a couple of minutes spent on a speed trace, the trainee would have no longer tested positive for claustrophobia, and they would not have had to be disqualified from a bomber crew position in cramped quarters (as most of them were in the 1940s).
           How many tests are yet made today, about 70 years later, for various phobias, claustrophobia, acrophobia, agoraphobia, etc to determine if a person possesses a phobia and subsequently flunking them out of some service position? All of these could be augmented by a simple Speed Trace which remove the phobia tested for.
           most cordially,
           Bobby

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    9. CLOSING NOTES:
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    Thanks to all of you Good Readers for providing the chemistry which has made this site a glowing endeavor. — Especially those of you who have graciously allowed us to reprint your emails and show photos of you and by you on this website — you're looking good!

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    As of March 1, 2017 we will have received over 16.8 MILLION VISITORS to the Doyletics Website since its inception in August 1, 2001, over fifteen years ago. About 2.5 million in the past 12 months. We are currently averaging about 240,000 visitors a month. A Visitor is defined as a Reader who is new or returns after 20 minutes or more has passed. The average is about one visitor for every 10 Hits.

    IMPORTANT NOTES about DIGESTWORLDtm

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    We especially want to thank you, our Good Readers, in advance, for helping our readership to grow. NOTE our name is now: DIGESTWORLD. Continue to send comments to Bobby and please do create links to DIGESTWORLD issues and Reviews on LinkedIn, on your Facebook page, and on other Social Media. When you copy any portion of a webpage or review, please include this text: "Copyright 2015 by Bobby Matherne".
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    Learn to Do a Speed Trace Here



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    Check out the new additions to the Famous and Interesting Quotations at:
    http://www.doyletics.com/quotes.htm

    == == == == == == == == == == ==

    My reviews are not intended to replace the purchasing and reading of the reviewed books, but rather to supplant a previous reading or to spur a new reading of your own copy. What I endeavor to do in most of my reviews is to impart a sufficient amount of information to get the reader comfortable with the book so that they will want to read it for themselves. My Rudolf Steiner reviews are more detailed and my intention is bring his work to a new century of readers by converting his amazing insights into modern language and concepts.

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    10. GRATITUDE - in Three Easy Steps:
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