Friday, February 29, 2008


Few people are capable of expressing with equanimity opinions which differ from the prejudices of their social evironment. Most people are even incapable of forming such opinions. Albert Einstein

Some ideas are so stupid that only intellectuals could believe them. Michael Levine

New opinions are always suspected, and usually opposed, without any other reason but because they are not already common. -- John Locke

Any man who afflicts the human race with ideas must be prepared to see them misunderstood. Henry Lewis Mencken, 1880 - 1956

The well-meaning contention that all ideas have equal merit seems to me little different from the disastrous contention that no ideas have any merit. Carl Sagan, "Broca's Brain" (1978), p. xiv.

Hypocrisy -

Darkness reigns at the foot of the lighthouse. Japanese Proverb

The hypocrite's crime is that he bears false witness against himself. Hannah Arendt On Revolution [1963]

Thus say the common people that know him: "A saint abroad, and a devil at home." --John Bunyan (1628-1688) _The Pilgrim's Progress_ [1678], Part I

A saint abroad, at home a fiend. --Phineas Fletcher, _The Purple Island_ VII (1633)

Whenever I dwell for any length of time on my own shortcomings, they gradually begin to seem mild, harmless, rather engaging little things, not at all like the staring defects in other people's characters.--Margaret Halsey

Our greatest pretenses are built up not to hide the evil and the ugly in us, but our emptiness. The hardest thing to hide is something that is not there. Eric Hoffer

Be not too hasty to trust, or to admire, the teachers of morality; they discourse like angels, but they live like men.
Samuel Johnson: Rasselas [the character Imlac]

Men who cannot deceive others are very often successful at deceiving themselves. - Samuel Johnson: Rambler #31

I passed by a party of men in the night of my ascension to heaven. Their tongues were being cut with scissors. I asked them: "Who are you? They said: 'We used to give advice to others for good deeds but we used not to do them. We used to prohibit evil deeds to others, but we used to do them' ".
Mohammed, Hadith

For neither Man nor Angel can discern
Hypocrisy, the only evil that walks
Invisible, except to God alone,
By his permissive will, through Heav'n and Earth.
And oft though wisdom wake, suspicion sleeps
At wisdom's Gate, and to simplicity
Resigns her charge, while goodness thinks no ill
Where no ill seems.
John Milton, PARADISE LOST, Book III, 682-89.
Modern liberalism, even as its philosophers hold that no act is objectively sinful, treats hypocrisy as a serious sin. Why? If nothing is sinful, why is hypocrisy sinful? Hypocrisy is sinful -- that is, damaging to the soul -- if the moral principles the hypocrite voices then violates are true. But liberals tell us those principles aren't true, that humans can depart from them without damage to their character. So what's the moral problem with violating a moral code liberals consider false in the first place?
Hypocrisy is a moral problem, but liberals can't reach that conclusion on the basis of liberal moral philosophy. In order to denounce it, they have to suspend their customary moral relativism and borrow the principles of conservative moral philosophy. Then, once the target of their moral outrage over hypocrisy is thoroughly eviscerated, they abandon those principles and return to a skepticism about right and wrong in which all forms of deception, including hypocrisy, are defensible.--George Neumayr, "Self-Indulgent Liberal Man", _American Spectator_

Hypocrisy is the homage paid by vice to virtue. Duc de la Rochefoucald 1613-1680 Les Maximes 218

Do not, as some ungracious pastors do,
Show me the steep and thorny way to heaven,
Whiles, like a puffed and reckless libertine,
Himself the primrose path of dalliance treads
And recks not his own rede.
William Shakespeare (1564-1616)_Hamlet_ [1600-1601], Act I, Scene III, Line 47

But then I sigh; and, with a piece of Scripture,
Tell them that God bids us do good for evil:
And thus I clothe my naked villany
With odd old ends stol'n forth of holy writ;
And seem a saint when most I play the devil.
William Shakespeare (1564-1616)_King Richard III_ [1592-1593], Act I, Scene III, Line 334

O, what may man within him hide, though angel on the outward side! - William Shakespeare

Volumes might be written upon the impiety of the pious.--Herbert Spencer (1820-1903)_First Principles_ [1861]

If we see a speck in a brother's eye, we must first see if there is a log in our own eye; perhaps that speck in our brother's eye is only a reflection of the beam in our own. ... David Watson

Hypercalvinism -

We are the chosen few.
All others will be damned.
We won't have others here.
We won't have heaven crammed.

1)God hates you
2)He has a terrible plan for your life
3)there is nothing you can do about it
MacArthur's 'three points of hypercalvinism':

Hymns -

Dear Lord and Father of mankind,
Forgive our foolish ways;
For most of us, when asked our mind,
Admit we still most pleasure find,
In hymns of ancient days,
In hymns of ancient days.
The simple lyrics, for a start,
Of many a modern song,
Are far too trite to touch the heart;
Enshrine no poetry, no art;
And go on much too long,
And go on much too long.

O, for a rest from jollity
And syncopated praise!
What happened to tranquillity?
The silence of eternity
Is hard to hear these days,
Is hard to hear these days.

Send thy deep hush subduing all
Those happy claps that drown
The tender whisper of thy call;
Triumphalism is not all
For sometimes we feel down,
For sometimes we feel down.

Drop thy still dews of quietness
Till all our strummings cease;
Take from our soul the strain and stress
Of always having to be blessed;
Give us a bit of peace,
Give us a bit of peace.

Breathe through the beats of praise-guitar
Thy coolness and thy balm;
Let drum be dumb, bring back the lyre,
Enough of earthquake, wind and fire,
Let's hear it for some calm,
Let's hear it for some calm.

The Village Choir being a parody of The Charge of the Light Brigade by Alfred Lord Tennyson 1809-92
(from The Faber Book of Parodies)
Half a bar, half a bar,
Half a bar onward!
Into an awful ditch
Choir and precentor hitch,
Into a mess of pitch
They led the Old Hundred.
Trebles to right of them
Tenors to left of them
Basses in front of them
Bellowed and thundered.
Oh, that precentor's look,
When the sopranos took
Their own time and hook
From the Old Hundred!
Screeched all the trebles here,
Boggled the tenors there,
Raising the parson's hair,
While his mind wandered;
Theirs not to reason why
This psalm was pitched too high:
Theirs but to gasp and cry
Out the Old Hundred.
Trebles to right of them,
Tenors to left of them,
Basses in front of them,
Bellowed and thundered.
Stormed they with shout and yell,
Not wise they sang nor well,
Drowning the sexton's bell,
While all the Church wondered.

Dire the precentor's glare,
Flashed his pitchfork in air
Sounding fresh keys to bear
Out the Old Hundred.
Swiftly he turned his back,
Reached he his hat from rack,
Then from the screaming pack,
Himself he sundered.
Tenors to right of him,
Tenors to left of him,
Discords behind him,
Bellowed and thundered.

Oh, the wild howls they wrought:
Right to the end they fought!
Some tune they sang, but not,
Not the Old Hundred. ANON

A verse may find him who a sermon flies,
And turn delight into a sacrifice.
The Church Porch. George Herbert. 1593-1632.
Few men have left behind such purity of character or such monuments of laborious piety. He has provided instruction for all ages, from those who are lisping their first lessons, to the enlightened readers of Malbranche and Locke; he has left neither corporeal nor spiritual nature unexamined; he has taught the art of reasoning, and the science of the stars.
Samuel Johnson: On Isaac Watts (Lives of the Poets)

Sing we the song of high revolt,
Make great the Lord, his name exalt!
Sing we the song that Mary sang,
Of God at war with human wrong.
Sing we of him who deeply cares,
Who still with us our burden shares
He who with strength the proud disowns,
Pulls down the mighty from their thrones.

By him the poor are lifted up,
He satisfies with bread and cup
The hungry men of many lands;
The rich must go with empty hands.

He calls us to revolt and fight,
With him for what is just and right
To sing and live Magnificat
In crowded street and council flat
Fred Kan, The Magnificat, to be sung to the tune of, The Red Flag

Telephone to glory,
Oh the joy divine,
I can fel the current,
Tingling on the line.

Carnal combinations,
Cannot get control,
Of this line to glory,
Anchored in the soul.
Rodeheaver's gospel Songs and Solos was 'The Gospel Telephone'.

Let earth and heaven combine,
Angels and men agree,
To praise in songs divine
The incarnate Deity,
Our God contracted to a span,
Incomprehensibly made man.

He laid his glory by,
He wrapped him in our clay;
Unmarked by human eye,
The latent Godhead lay;
Infant of days he here became,
And bore the mild Immanuel's name.

See in that Infant's face
The depth of Deity,
And labour while ye gaze
To sound that mystery:
In vain; ye angels, gaze no more,
But fall, and silently adore.

Unsearchable the love
That has the Saviour brought;
The grace is far above
Or man or angel's thought:
Suffice for us that God, we know,
Our God, is manifest below.

He deigns in flesh to appear,
Widest extremes to join;
To bring our vileness near,
And make us all divine:
And we the life of God shall know,
For God is manifest below.

Made perfect first in love,
And sanctified by grace,
We shall from earth remove,
And see his glorious face:
His love shall then be fully showed,
And man shall then be lost in God. C Wesley

Many Gentlemen have done my brother and me (though without naming us) the honour to reprint many of our hymns. Now they are perfectly welcome to do so, provided they print them just as they are. But I desire that they would not attempt to mend them - for they really are not able. None of them is able to mend either the sense or the verse. Therefore I must beg the one of these two favours: either to let them stand just as they are, to take them for better for worse; or to add the true reading in the margin, or at the bottom of the page; that we may no longer be accountable either for the nonsense or doggerel of other men.
John Wesley, Preface to a Collection of Hymns for use of the People called Methodists, London, Oct 20, 1779

Hunting -

The English country gentleman galloping after a fox--the unspeakable in full pursuit of the uneatable.--Oscar Wilde, _A Woman of No Importance_

Hunger -

What makes bitter things sweet? Hunger.
Alcuin, 8thC, in R Lacey and D Danziger, The Year 1000, Little, Brown and Co,GB, 1999, p57

Cry betrayal for Harry and his troops!

Some American toe rag has endangered Harry and his troops by revealing he is on active service in Afghanistan. With allies like this who needs the Taliban? The UK press had kept a responsible silence. Now the lad is likely to be sent home.

I feel sorry for him. Service life is the one bit of normality royal princes can enjoy. Imagine having all you life to be restricted in movement, alone nowhere except in your private accommodation. Every time you go out there must be accompanying security. But in the army, Harry can be merely another officer. Harry Wales can be Lieutenant Normal. But no more thanks to some yapping yank.

This americanophile is hopping mad!

Humour -

668: The Neighbour of the Beast

Good news is just life's way of keeping you off balance.

If time heals all wounds, how come the belly button stays the same?

Just because I'm moody doesn't mean you're not irritating.

Q: Where does virgin wool come from? A: Ugly sheep.

Sign over a Polish urinal reads "Please don't eat the big white mints"

How can you tell when sour cream goes bad?

If you hear an onion ring, answer it.

A well balanced Aussie is one with a chip on both shoulders.

The difference between an Aussie wedding and a Aussie funeral is one less drunk.

The dyslexic agnostic with insomnia laid awake all night wondering if there really was a dog.

Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven... Blessed are the meek... Blessed are they that mourn... Blessed are the merciful... Blessed are they that thirst for justice when persecuted... Blessed are you when you suffer...
Be glad and rejoice for your reward is great in heaven.
Then Simon Peter said, "Are we supposed to know this?"
And Andrew said, "Do we have to write this down?"
And James said, "Is this examinable?"
And Phillip said, "Is there an answer guide in the library?"
And Bartholomew said, "What came after poor?"
And John said, "The other disciples didn't have to learn this!"
And Mark said, "Don't take the overhead off yet."
And Matthew went to the bathroom.
One of the Pharisees who was present asked to see Jesus' lesson plan and enquired of Jesus, "Where are your anticipatory set and your objectives in the cognitive domain?"
And Jesus wept
There are two rules for success in life.
Rule 1: Don't tell people everything you know.

It's like an Alcatraz around my neck Boston mayor Menino on the shortage of city parking spaces

They had to evacuate our library. Someone found dynamite in the dictionary.

Give a man a fish, and he'll eat for a day. Teach a man to fish and he'll sit in a boat and drink beer.

There are things so serious that you can only joke about them.

Swami Johnnieshere's Ten Guidelines for Enlightenment
1. Be a Fundamentalist -- ensure that the Fun always comes before the Mental. Realise that life is a situation comedy that
will never be cancelled. A laugh track has been provided and the reason we are put in the material world is to get more
material from that track. Have a good laughsitive twice a day, which will ensure regularity.
2. Remember that each of us has been given a special gift just for entering, so you are already a winner!
3. The most powerful tool on the planet today is Tell-A-Vision. That's where I tell a vision to you and you tell a vision to
me. That way, if we don't like the programming we're getting, we can change the channel.
4. Life is like photography -- you use the negative to develop. No matter what adversity you face, be reassured: Of course
God loves you...
5. It is true: As we go through life thinking heavy thoughts, thought particles tend to get caught between the ears and cause a condition called "truth decay". Be sure to use mental floss twice a day, and when you're tempted to practice 'tantrum
yoga', remember what we teach in the Swami's Absurdiveness Training Class: DON'T GET EVEN, GET ODD.
6. If we want world peace, we must let go of our attachments and truly live like nomads. That's where I no mad at you and you no mad at me. That way there'll surely be nominees on the planet. Peace begins with each of us. A little peace here, a
little peace there. Pretty soon all the peaches will fit together to make one big peace everywhere.
7.I know great earth changes have been predicted for the future, so if you're looking to avoid earthquakes my advice is
simple: When you find a fault don't dwell on it.
8. There's no need to change the world. All we have to do is toilet train the world and we'll never have to change it again.
9. If you're looking for the key to the Universe I've got some good news and some bad news. The bad news: There is no
key to the Universe. The good news: It was never locked.
10. Finally, everything I've told you is 'channelled'. That way, if you don't like it it's not my fault. But remember:
Enlightenment is not a bureaucracy, so you don't have to go through channels.

Free Nelson Mandela......... with every packet of corn flakes Graffito

Flies spread disease . Keep yours zipped.

There is more to eating grapefruit than meets the eye.

Is a castrated pig disgruntled?

What's the difference between an oral thermometer and a rectal thermometer?

The taste.

Blessed are the flexible, for they can tie themselves into knots.

I will find humour in my everyday life by looking for people I can laugh at.

Mary had a little lamb,
Her father shot it dead.
Now Mary takes the lamb to school
Between two hunks of bread.

Mary had a little bear
To which she was so kind
And everywhere that Mary went
You saw her bear behind.

Mary had a little watch,
She swallowed it one day,
The doctor gave her castor oil
To pass the time away.

Mary had a little lamb,
It's fleece was white as snow.
She took it to an abattoir
The rest I'm sure you know........

I have an inferiority complex, but it isn't a very good one.

Due to budget constraints, the light at the end of the tunnel has been turned off, effective immediately.
Graffiti seen in San Francisco, circa 1995

Isme is the name of Isaiah's horse. Every time Isaiah arrived anywhere, the first thing he would say is "Woa Isme!"

If your nose runs and your feet smell, then you're built upside down.

Q: How do you let air into a Russian Orthodox church?
A: You click on an icon, and a window opens.

My grandmother was a medium. At least that's what it said on her knickers.

Humor is the only test of gravity, and gravity of humor; for a subject which will not bear raillery is suspicious, and a jest which will not bear serious examination is false wit. Aristotle

Hanging is too good for a man who makes puns; he should be drawn and quoted. -Fred Allen E. B. White (1899-1985) In "1,911 Best Things Anybody Ever Said," ed. Robert Byrne, 1988.

Imagination was given to man to compensate him for what he is not; a sense of humor to console him for what he is.- Francis Bacon, 1561 - 1626

I'll tell you what Fowler's trouble is. It is making jokes. It is falling foul of the global conspiracy of the humourless. Jokes humanise, jokes civilise, jokes deflect wrath. Jokes give perspective, insight, clarity. Jokes give complexity. Jokes add life-giving layers of possibility. Jokes do not compromise the seriousness: jokes add to a serious intention and make deeper the meaning. Ask Shakespeare if you don't believe me, or Donne, or Joyce.
But so much of daily life is organised by the conspiracies of the jokeless: the dehumanisers, those who dread perspective, balance, thought. Lord deliver us from the humourless - I fear Fowler has fallen into their clutches. Moral: don't make jokes. Ever. The humourless always win.
Simon Barnes, The Times, April 7 1999 - (written after Fowler landed in hot water for sniffing the touchline as if it was a line of coke)

A person without a sense of humor is like a wagon without springs, jolted by every pebble in the road. Henry Ward Beecher

Defining and analyzing humor is a pastime of humorless people. Robert Benchley

Mark my words, when a society has to resort to the lavatory for its humour, the writing is on the wall.- Alan Bennett

It's like deja vu all over again. Yogi Berra

No wonder nobody comes here; it's too crowded. --Yogi Berra

Please help me; I am suffering from attention deficit dis....John Callahan

Is it true that cannibals don't eat clowns because they taste funny? - George Carlin

In Rome, the emperor sat in a special part of the Coliseum called the Caesarean Section. George Carlin

I went to the Missing Persons Bureau. No one was there. George Carlin

Why do they bother saying 'Raw sewage'? Do some people cook that stuff?-George Carlin

How can it be a spy satellite if they announce on television that it's a spy satellite?-George Carlin

In Los Angeles there's a hotline for people in denial. So far no one has called. George Carlin

But there, everything has its drawbacks, as the man said when his mother-in-law died, and they came down upon him for the funeral expenses. - Jerome K. Jerome (1859 &endash; 1927)

For health and the constant enjoyment of life, give me a keen and ever-present sense of humour; it is the next best thing to an abiding faith in providence. George B. Cheever

Humor is always based on a modicum of truth. Have you ever heard a joke about a father-in-law? Dick Clark

A difference of taste in jokes is a great strain on the affections.--George Eliot [Marian Evans Cross] (1819-1880)_Daniel Deronda_ [1876], Book 2, Chapter 15

Humor is also a way of saying something serious. T. S. Eliot

A sense of humor is part of the art of leadership, of getting along with people, of getting things done. Dwight David Eisenhower

The first thing any comedian does on getting an unscheduled laugh is to verify the state of his buttons.
W. C. Fields (1880-1946) "W. C. Fields, Rowdy King of Comedy," by Robert L. Taylor.

Start every day with a smile and get it over with. -- W C Fields

Secretary: "It must be hard to lose your mother-in-law."
W.C: Fields "Yes it is, very hard. It's almost impossible."

After two days in hospital, I took a turn for the nurse.-- W. C. Fields

Bloodnok: "So you two want to join the Bombay Irish do you?"
"Aye aye Jock Mon!"
"Aye aye Buddy"
"Well, it's a tough life I tell you. Do you know what it's like to be in the thick of a bloody battle with bullets flying?"
"Pity. I was hoping you'd tell me what it was like. You see I'm writing a book entitled Bloodnok VC. However, let us take
the Regimental Oath. Open your wallet and say after me, "Help yourself""
(Together) "Help yourself!"
"Thanks. Do you swear to be brave soldiers?"
"Never turn your back on the enemy?"
"Always speak well of a lady?"
"And respect the chastity of a woman?"
"Have we got nothing in common?"
Regimental Oath The Goon Show

Does `Magna Carta' mean nothing to you? Did she die in vain?--- Tony Hancock

Dulce est desipere in loco. (It's sweet to be silly when the time's right.) --Horace

What do you get when you cross a Jehovah's Witness and an Atheist?
Someone who knocks at your door for no apparent reason.
Stan Kelly-Bootle

Good humor is a tonic for mind and body. It is the best antidote for anxiety and depression. It is a business asset. It attracts and keeps friends. It lightens human burdens. It is the direct route to serenity and contentment. --Grenville Kleiser

You grow up the day you have the first real laugh -- at yourself. Letitia Landon (1802-1838)

Unknown to most historians, William Tell had an older and much less fortunate son, Warren.-- Larson, The Far Side

You can't stay mad at somebody who makes you laugh.--Jay Leno

A person reveals his character by nothing so clearly as the joke he resents. G. C. Lichtenberg

She got her good looks from her father. He's a plastic surgeon. - Julius "Groucho" Marx (1890 &endash; 1977)

Chopsticks are one of the reasons the Chinese never invented custard Spike Milligan

My father had a profound influence on me. He was a lunatic. ~ Spike Milligan

Apparently Apollo 11 was sent as an attempt to make contact with Aliens on the moon. The correct greeting for these Aliens, apparently, was the word 'Gnorts'. As NASA were worried that the first man on the moon would forget this crucial greeting, they gave him a code name, so he would not forget it. They called him Neil Armstrong, which when spelled backwards reads... Nick Milton

Good taste and humour are a contradiction in terms, like a chaste whore. Malcolm Muggeridge

If your nose runs and your feet smell, then you're built upside down. Alfred E. Neuman

I was walking across a bridge one day, and I saw a man standing on the edge, about to jump off. So I ran over and said 'Stop! don't do it!' 'Why shouldn't I?' he said. I said, 'Well, there's so much to live for!' He said, 'Like what?' I said, 'Well... are you religious or atheist?' He said, 'Religious.' I said, 'Me too! Are you Christian or Buddhist?' He said, 'Christian.' I said, 'Me too! Are you Catholic or Protestant?' He said, 'Protestant.' I said, 'Me too! Are you Episcopalian or Baptist?' He said, 'Baptist!' I said, 'Wow! Me too! Are you Baptist church of god or Baptist church of the lord?' He said, 'Baptist church of god!' I said, 'Me too! Are you original Baptist church of god, or are you reformed Baptist church of god?' He said, 'Reformed Baptist church of god!' I said, 'Me too! Are you reformed Baptist church of god, reformation of 1879, or reformed Baptist church of god, reformation of 1915?' He said, 'Reformed Baptist church of god, reformation of 1915!' I said, 'Die, heretic scum,' and pushed him off. - Emo Philips My cousin just died. He was only 19. He got stung by a bee - the natural enemy of a tightrope walker. - Emo Philips

A couple of aspirates.- F. E. Smith's, prescription for J. H. Thomas, complaining of 'an 'ell of an 'eadache.'.

Do not assume that because I am frivolous I am shallow; I don't assume that because you are grave you are profound. Sydney Smith 1771-1845

Pig-Pen', have you ever heard that old saying?
What old saying?
Cleanliness is next to godliness.
Oh, yes ... many times.
Then why don't you follow it?
Because with me, Charlie Brown, cleanliness is next to impossible!
Good Ol' Charlie Brown_ (N.Y., Rinehart, 1957).

Do you know why Catholics make the best drummers? It's their natural sense of rhythm. Kim Tame

Denial ain't just a river in Egypt. Mark Twain (1835-1910)

Nature has made us frivolous to console us for our miseries.--Voltaire, 1764

A sense of humor can help you overlook the unattractive, tolerate the unpleasant, cope with the unexpected, and smile through the unbearable. -Moshe Waldoks

Analyzing humor is like dissecting a frog. Few people are interested and the frog dies of it.- E. B. White

I have always noticed that deeply and truly religious persons are fond of a joke, and I am suspicious of those who aren't.- Alfred North Whitehead, (1861-1947).

I poured spot remover on my dog. Now he's gone. ~ Stephen Wright

Humility -

I've never had a humble opinion in my life. If you're going to have one, why bother to be humble about it?

Humility is the only certain defense against humiliation.

Humility can be sought but never celebrated.

Life is a long lesson in humility.~James M. Barrie

I was but a pen, and what praise is due to a pen? -- Baxter, _Reliquiae Baxterianae_

Gielgud is a very humble man. He can be wayward, obstinate and maddeningly changeable, but one can forgive all these because he sets so little store by his own reputation.-Alan Bennett, 8 October 1968.

Mr Lely, I desire you would use all your skill to paint my picture freely like me, and not flatter me at all; but remark all these roughnesses, pimples, warts and everything as you see me, otherwise I will never pay a farthing for it.
Attr to Oliver Cromwell (1599-1658) in Horace Walpole, "Anecdotes of Painting in England" 1763.

How can God stoop lower than to come and dwell with a poor humble soul? which is more than if he had said, such a one should dwell with him; for a beggar to live at court is not so much as the king to dwell with him in his cottage.-- William Gurnall

Humility is a necessary veil to all other graces..-- William Gurnall

A servant with this clause
Makes drudgery divine;
Who sweeps a room as for Thy laws
Makes that and th' action fine.
The Elixir.George Herbert. 1593-1632

I see only one thing to do at the moment. Your patient has become humble; have you drawn his attention to the fact? All virtues are less formidable to us once the man is aware that he has them, but this is specially true of humility. Catch him at the moment when he is really poor in spirit and smuggle into his mind the gratifying reflection, "By jove! I'm being humble", and almost immediately pride at his own humility will appear.--C. S. Lewis, _The Screwtape Letters_

"You come of the Lord Adam and the Lady Eve," said Aslan. "And that is both honour enough to erect the head of the poorest beggar, and shame enough to bow the shoulders of the greatest emperor in earth. Be content." C S Lewis Prince Caspian

Faithful service in a lowly place is true spiritual greatness. D Jackman

Dictionaries are like watches: the worst is better than none, and the best cannot be expected to go quite true.
Samuel Johnson (Hester Thrale Piozzi: Anecdotes of the Late Samuel Johnson)

Humility is nothing else but the right judgment of ourselves. --William Law

Here is another (earlier?) translation by Charles Cotton that I found somewhere on the web. It is based on the 1575 edition of the Essays.
To enter a breach, conduct an embassy, govern a people, are actions of renown: to reprehend, laugh, sell, pay, love, hate, and gently and justly converse with a man's own family, and with himself; not to relax, not to give a man's self the lie is more rare and hard, and less remarkable."

Storming a breach, conducting an embassy, ruling a nation, are glittering deeds. Rebuking, laughing, buying, selling, loving, hating, and living together gently and justly with your household - and with yourself - not getting slack nor belying yourself, is something more remarkable, more rare and more difficult."
from essay "On Repenting" - Book 3, Essay 2 Translation by M.A.Screech Penguin "The Complete Essays" ISBN 0-14-044604-

Pride makes us artificial and humility makes us real. Thomas Merton (1915-1968), No Man Is An Island (1955)

I have had more trouble with myself than with any other man I ever met. Dwight L. Moody

Humility, that low, sweet root, From which all heavenly virtues shoot.--Thomas Moore, The Loves of the Angels. The Third Angel's Story.

It is not the glorious battlements, the painted windows, the crouching gargoyles that support a building, but the stones that lie unseen in or upon the earth. It is often those who are despised and trampled on that bear up the weight of a whole nation.- JOHN OWEN

Don't let your head get too big, it'll break your neck -Elvis Presley

Little things -

I post this becauseLittle things affect one a lot, ewspecially moods.

Little things console us, because little things afflict us. -- Pascal

Sometimes when I consider what tremendous
consequences come from little things--a chance
word, a tap on the shoulder, or a penny dropped
on a newstand--I am tempted to think...there are
no little things.--Bruce Barton

I challenge anybody in their darkest moment to
write what they're grateful for, even stupid
little things like green grass or a friendly
conversation with somebody on the elevator. You
start to realize how rich you are. Jim Carrey

Do little things as though they were great,
because of the majesty of Jesus Christ who does
them in us, and who lives our life: and do the
greatest things as though they were little and
easy, because of His omnipotence. ... Blaise
Pascal (1623-1662), PensÈes [1660]

One resolution I have made, and try always to
keep, is this: "To rise above little things."
--John Burroughs (1837-1921)

Whenever I dwell for any length of time on my own
shortcomings, they gradually begin to seem mild,
harmless, rather engaging little things, not at
all like the staring defects in other people's
characters.- -Margaret Halsey

Be great in little things. Francis Xavier

Not for the mighty world. O Lord, tonight,
Nations and kingdoms in their fearful might--
Let me be glad the kettle gently sings,
Let me be grateful for little things.
Edna Jaques

Thursday, February 28, 2008

Humanism -

Happy day, when, all appetites controlled, all passions subdued, all matters subjected, mind, all conquering mind, shall live and move the monarch of the world. Glorious consummation! Hail fall of Fury! Reign of Reason, all hail!

Indeed there is a case for arguing that Homo sapiens is also Homo religiosus.... like any other human activity, religion can be abused but it seems to be something that we have always done. It was not tacked on to a primordially secular nature by manipulative kings and priests but was natural to humanity. Indeed, our current secularism is an entirely new experiment, unprecedented in human history. We have yet to see how it will work. It is also true to say that our Western liberal humanism is not something that comes naturally to us; like an appreciation of art and poetry it has to be cultivated. Humanism is itself a religion without god -not all religions, of course, are theistic. ~Karen Armstrong

On humanist assumptions, life leads to nothing; and every pretense that it does not is a deceit. ... H. J. Blackham

The end product of atheist humanism is the modern totalitarian state, in which the illusion of man's metaphysical freedom from divine government goes hand in hand with the reality of his political subjection. -- J. V. L. Casserley, _Retreat from Christianity in the Modern World_, 1952

I am convinced that the battle for humankind's future must be waged and won in the public school classroom by teachers who correctly perceive their role as the proselytizers of a new faith: a religion of humanity that recognizes and respects the spark of what theologians call divinity in every human being. Thess [sic] teachers must embody the same selfless dedication as the most rabid fundamentalist preachers, for they will be ministers of another sort, utilizing a classroom instead of a pulpit to convey humanist values in whatever subject they teach, regardless of the educational level -- preschool day care or large state university. The classroom must and will become an arena of conflict between the old and the new -- the rotting corpse of Christianity, together with all its adjacent evils and misery, and the new faith of humanism. --John Dunphy, A Religion for a New Age, Humanist, Jan.-Feb. 1983, p. 26

We have found a strange footprint on the shores of the unknown. We have devised profound theories, one after another to account for its origin. At last, we have succeeded in reconstructing the creature that made the footprint. And lo! It is our own. -- Sir Arthur Stanley Eddington, _Space, Time, and Gravitation_

If you find examples of humanism which are anti-religious, or at least in opposition to the religious faith of the place and time, then such humanism is purely destructive, for it has never found anything to replace what it has destroyed. -- T. S. Eliot, "Humanism of Irving Babbit," _Selected Essays_, 1917-1928

Humanism sucks the egg of personality's value and then tries to hatch a higher religion out of it. -- Harry Emerson Fosdick, _As I See Religion_, 1932

As soon as man began considering himself the source of the highest meaning in the world and the measure of everything, the world began to lose its human dimension, and man began to lose control of it. ~Václav Havel.

Out of the night that covers me,
Black as the pit from pole to pole,
I thank whatever gods may be
For my unconquerable soul.
In the fell clutch of circumstance
I have not winced nor cried aloud.
Under the bludgeonings of chance
My head is bloody but unbowed.

Beyond this place of wrath and tears
Looms but the Horror of the shade,
And yet the menace of the years
Finds and shall find me unafraid.

It matters not how strait the gate,
How charged with punishments the scroll,
I am the master of my fate:
I am the captain of my soul.
William Ernest Henley, 1849-1903 INVICTUS

The short-lived self, teetering on the edge of extinction, is the only thing that can ever really matter.-- Eric Hoffer

I use the word "Humanist" to mean someone who believes that man is just as much a natural phenomenon as an animal or a plant; that his body, mind or soul were not supernaturally created but are products of evolution, and that he is not under the control or guidance of any supernatural being, but has to rely in himself and his own powers. Julian Huxley

Enlighten the people generally, and tyranny and oppressions of body and mind will vanish like spirits at the dawn of day.-- Thomas Jefferson

Our problems are man-made, therefore they may be solved by man. No problem of human destiny is beyond human beings.... John F. Kenney

A scientific humanism frequently offends the dignity of man, which it ostensibly extols, by regarding human beings as subject to manipulation and as mere instruments of some "socially approved" ends.-- Reinhold Niebuhr, _Christian Realism and Political Problems_, 1953

We have it in our power to begin the world again. -Thomas Paine

Militant humanism grates on me much more than evangelism. - Tom Stoppard:

There will never be a free and enlightened State until the State comes to recognize the individual as a higher and independent power, from which all its own power and authority are derived, and treats him accordingly. --Henry David Thoreau _Resistance to Civil Government_ (1849)


It isn't so much what's on the table that matters, as what's on the chairs. ~W. S. Gilbert 1836-1911

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Hope -

Every morning is the dawn of a new error.

False hope is nicer than no hope at all.

No matter how difficult life can be the most important thing is to live it with hope

Of all the ills that men endure, hope is the only cheap and universal cure.

Man can live about forty days without food, about three days without water, about eight minutes without air... but only for one second without hope.

I know how men in exile feed on dreams. Aeschylus

If they can make penicillin out of moldy bread, they can sure make something out of you. -- Muhammad Ali

When you say a situation or a person is hopeless, you are slamming the door in the face of God. --Charles L. Allen

Hope is hearing the melody of the future. Faith is to dance to it now. Ruben Alves

The most hopeful people in the world are the young and the drunk. The first because they have little experience of failure, and the second because they have succeeded in drowning theirs. Thomas Aquinas

While it is wise to accept what we cannot change about ourselves, it is also good to remember that we are never too old to replace discouragement with bit and pieces of confidence and hope. -Elaine N. Aron _The Highly Sensitive Person: How to Thrive When the World Overwhelms You_

Our faith in the present dies out long before our faith in the future.
Ruth Benedict (1887-1948) "An Anthropologist at Work: Writings of Ruth Benedict," by Margaret Mead, 1959

I am still confident of this: I will see the goodness of the LORD in the land of the living.
Wait for the LORD; be strong and take heart and wait for the LORD. Ps. 27:13 -14.

For but a moment in his wrath;
life in his love doth stay:
weeping may lodge with us a night
but joye at break of day."
Psalm 30:5 (Bay Psalm Book)

For but a moment lasts his wrath;
life in his favour lies:
Weeping may for a night endure,
at morn doth joy arise."
Psalm 30:5 (Scottish Psalter)

Though you have made me see troubles, many and bitter, you will restore my life again; from the depths of the earth you will again bring me up. -- Ps. 71:20

Though he slay me, yet will I hope in him-- Job 13:15

Expect more! - William D Blake

He who despairs over an event is a coward, but he who holds hopes for the human condition is a fool.- Albert Camus

Expect great thing from God. Attempt great things for God. W Carey

Hope means expectancy when things are otherwise hopeless. --Gilbert Keith Chesterton (1874-1936)

For there is good news yet to hear and fine things to be seen,
Before we go to Paradise by way of Kensal Green.
G.K. Chesterton The Rolling English Road

While there's life, there's hope.--Marcus Tullius Cicero (106-43 BC), _Ad Atticum_

And the sea shall grant all men new hope, as sleep brings dreams of home. - Christopher Columbus, 1451 - 1506

There was never a night that had no morn. Dinah Mulock Craik (1826-1887) "The Golden Gate," "Mulock's Poems, New and Old," 1888.

Totally without hope one cannot live. To live without hope is to cease to live. Hell is hopelessness. It is no accident that above the entrance to Dante's hell is the inscription: "Leave behind all hope, you who enter here." --Fedor Dostoevski (1821-1881)

They can conquer who believe they can-- John Dryden. Book V of Virgil's Aeneid.

It is never to late to be what you might have been. --George Eliot

All earthly delights are sweeter in expectation than in enjoyment; all spiritual pleasures, more in fruition than in expectation. Owen Feltham

Hope... like the gleaming taper's light,
adorns and cheers our way;
And still, as darker grows the night,
Emits a brighter ray.
Oliver Goldsmith

Hope is the best possession. None are completely wretched but those who are without hope, and few are reduced so low as that.--William Hazlitt (1778-1830) _Characteristics_ [1823]

Hope is the poor man's bread-- George Herbert

He that lives in hope danceth without musick. George Herbert

We must always have old memories and young hopes.~Arsène Houssaye

The word which God has written on the brow of every man is hope. VICTOR HUGO

To-morrow is an old deceiver, and his cheat never grows stale.-- Samuel Johnson, letter to Hester Thrale, May 24 1773

Hope is necessary in every condition. The miseries of poverty, sickness, of captivity, would, without this comfort, be insupportable.--Samuel Johnson (1709-1784)_The Rambler_ [1750-1752], #67

The pleasure of expecting enjoyment is often greater than that of obtaining it, and the completion of almost every wish is found a disappointment. - Samuel Johnson: Rambler #71

We love to expect, and when expectation is either disappointed or gratified, we want to be again expecting.
Samuel Johnson

Where there is no hope, there can be no endeavour. Samuel Johnson

Happy are they ... who shall learn ... not to despair, but shall remember, that though the day is past, and their strength is wasted, there yet remains one effort to be made; that reformation is never hopeless, nor sincere endeavours ever unassisted; that the wanderer may at length return after all his errours, and that he who implores strength and courage from above shall find danger and difficulty give way before him. - Samuel Johnson: Rambler #65

Dependence of the soul upon the seasons, those temporary and periodical ebbs and flows of intellect, may, I suppose, be justly derided as the fumes of vain imagination. ... While this notion has possession of the head, it produces the inability which it supposes. Our powers owe much of their energy to our hopes. When success is attainable, diligence is enforced; but when it is admitted that the faculties are suppressed by a cross wind or a cloudy sky the day is given up without resistance; for who can contend with the course of Nature?- Samuel Johnson: Milton (Lives of the Poets)

Hope is such a bait, it covers any hook. --Ben Jonson (1572-1637) In "Wisdom of the Ages at Your Fingertips," MCR software, 1995.

The future is as bright as the promises of God.
Adoniram Judson, pioneer missionary to Burma who faced imprisonment and many other trials .

New mercies, each returning day,
Hover around us while we pray;
New perils past, new sins forgiven,
New thoughts of God, new hopes of heaven.
John Keble.

The sins against hope are despair, as anticipated failure, and presumption, as anticipated fulfilment. In both these cases man seeks to break out of his pilgrim existence and have his life otherwise than from the hand of God. FERDINAND KERSTIENS

How disappointment tracks the steps of hope.Letitia Landon (1802-1838)

Always too eager for the future, we
Pick up bad habits of expectancy.
Something is always approaching; every day
Till then we say,
Watching from a bluff the tiny, clear
Sparkling armada of promises draw near.
How slow they are! And how much time they waste,
Refusing to make haste!

Yet still they leave us holding wretched stalks
Of disappointment, for, though nothing balks
Each big approach, leaning with brass work prinked,
Each rope distinct,

Flagged, and the figurehead with golden tits
Arching our way, it never anchors; it's
No sooner present than it turns to past.
Right to the last

We think each one will heave to and unload
All good into our lives, all we are owed
For waiting so devoutly and so long.
But we are wrong:

Only one ship is seeking us, a black-
Sailed unfamiliar, towing at her back
A huge and birdless silence. In her wake
No waters breed or break.
Philip Larkin, Next Please

Should a single disappointed hope make us so hostile towards the world?-Lessing

Helplessness induces hopelessness, and history attests that loss of hope and not loss of lives is what decides the issue of war. B. H. Liddell Hart

If you don't go far enough back in memory or far enough ahead in hope,your future will be impoverished.
Art Linkletter (1912-____) From an internet collection of quotations

There is no medicine like hope, no incentive so great, and no tonic so powerful as expectation of something tomorrow.
Orison Swett Marden

However hard the road, however difficult today, tomorrow things will be better. Tomorrow may not be better, but we must believe that it will be.Benjamin E. Mays (1895-1984) In "My Soul Looks Back, 'Less I Forget," by Dorothy Winbush Riley, 1995.

Our faith in the present dies out long before our faith in the future.
Ruth Benedict (1887-1948) "An Anthropologist at Work: Writings of Ruth Benedict," by Margaret Mead, 1959

Tomorrow to fresh woods, and pastures new. --John Milton

Tis past&emdash;the dreadful stormy night
Is gone, with all its fears!
And now I see returning light,
The Lord, my Sun, appears.
John Newton (Olney Hymns 3:21, stanza 1)

Nothing that is worth anything can be achieved in a lifetime; therefore we must be saved by hope.Reinhold Niebuhr (1892-1971) Gilbert, in "The Critic as Artist," pt. 1; in "Intentions," 1891.

The real winners in life are the people who look at every situation with an expectation that they can make it work or make it better. Barbara Pelcher

Hope is the pillar that holds up the world. -- Pliny the Elder (23-79 A.D.)

Blessed is he who expects nothing, for he shall never be disappointed.--Alexander Pope (1688-1744) Letter to Gay, Oct. 6, 1727.

Hope springs eternal in the human breast:
Man never is, but always to be blest.
The soul, uneasy and confined from home,
Rests and expatiates in a life to come.
Alexander Pope. 1688-1744. Essay on Man. Epistle i. Line 95.

It is not the end of joy that makes old age so sad, but the end of hope. Jean Paul Richter

I rejoice in the hope of that glory to be revealed, for it is no uncertain glory that we look for. Our hope is not hung upon such an untwisted thread as, "I imagine so," or "It is likely," but the cable, the strong tow of our fastened anchor, is the oath and promise of Him who is eternal verity. Our salvation is fastened with God's own hand, and with Christ's own strength, to the strong stake of God's unchangeable nature. Samuel Rutherford, Letter to William Gordon

Linus: I guess it's wrong always to be worrying about tomorrow. Maybe we should think only about today.
Charlie Brown: No, that's giving up. I'm still hoping that yesterday will get better.-- C Schulz, Peanuts

Hope is like the sun, which, as we journey toward it, casts the shadow of our burden behind us.--Samuel Smiles (1812-1904)

It is only hope which is real, and reality is a bitterness and a deceit. ---William M. Thackeray, _Rebecca_

One day we will meet beside the river and our Lord will dry every tear. For now, we must live in the joy of that promise and recall that for every generation Life is hard, but God is faithful. -- Bodie Thoene

Only he who has seen better days and lives to see better days again knows their full value. Mark Twain

Tomorrow is the most important thing in life. Comes in to us at midnight very clean. It's perfect when it arrives and puts itself into our hands. It hopes we've learned something from yesterday. -John Wayne

Honours -

Arguments against the honours system #1:
William Shakespeare, Esq
Sir Andrew Lloyd Webber
Lord Jeffrey Archer - Gareth Owen


Honesty is the best policy, but insanity is a better defence

Make yourself an honest man, and then you can be sure there is one less rascal in the world.

It's amazing how many people are shocked by honesty and how few by deceit.

Where is there dignity unless there is honesty? -Marcus Tullius Cicero

I were two-faced, would I be wearing this one? Abraham Lincoln (1809-1865)

A great nation is any mob of people which produces at least one honest man a century.-- H. L. Mencken

I wish that I may never think the smiles of the great and powerful a sufficient inducement to turn aside from the straight path of honesty and the convictions of my own mind.-- The Works and Correspondence of David Ricardo, Vol. VII, p. 372.

Honesty is not so much a credit as an absolute prerequisite to efficient service to the public. Unless a man is honest we have no right to keep him in public life, it matters not how brilliant his capacity, it hardly matters how great his power of doing good service on certain lines may be. -- Roosevelt, Theodore. 1900. The Strenuous Life. , "OUTLOOK," MAY 12, 1900

Homosexuality -

Incidence ('Kinsey's shrinking 10%'): According to Time (26 April 1993) only 1% of males are exclusive homosexuals. Project Male Call (Aus. gov't survey 1994) found that 12% H. males have regular unprotected casual sex; 49% _only_casual sex; 19% are in a continuing relationship; 73% have multiple sexual partners.

Everything is controlled by the sods. The country is riddledwith homosexuals who are teaching the world how to behave--a spectacleof revolting hypocrisy.--Sir Thomas Beecham

[W]hile I have no late-breaking evidence that this conflict is imminent, only a fool would fail to get ready for what is almost certainly just ahead. I refer to the threat faced by thousands of churches, schools, and other charitable organizations that their tax-exempt status will sooner or later be placed in jeopardy unless they follow the "public interest" and extend full rights, of every conceivable kind, to homosexuals. Many of us&emdash;and that includes WORLD magazine&emdash;choose to discriminate on the basis of sexual behavior when it comes to initial employment, position, and promotion. But when we do so, it is not merely a matter of choice; we are obligated, we believe, by our most basic convictions to do so....But the homosexual chant is unrelenting: "Separate is never equal," they say, drawing gratuitously on our sensitivities to racial injustices of the past. They don't just want their rights; they want the privilege to exercise those rights smack in the middle of our cherished settings. They want to change our families, our schools, our workplaces, and our churches. For until they do, they know our institutions will sit in implied judgment on their ways. It is that implied judgment they cannot tolerate.- Joel Belz:

The love that previously dared not speak its name has now grown hoarse from screaming it. Robert Brustein, 1977

The . . . problem that confronts homosexuals is that they set out to win the love of a "real" man. If they succeed, they fail. A man who "goes with" other men is not what they would call a real man. The conundrum is incapable of resolution, but that does not make homosexuals give it up. Quentin

Christians do not automatically become non-Christian because they are sinning. The fact they are sinning--even if they do not realize it--does not automatically nullify their salvation.
But neither does their salvation legitimize their sin. A Christian may, indeed, be openly homosexual; that is no proof homosexuality and Christianity are compatible. In fact, a Christian may be openly sinning; that is no proof sin and Christianity are compatible, either.
Ananias and Sapphira, a husband and wife mentioned in Acts Chapter 5, were evidently believers. Yet their sin of hypocrisy (pretending to give more money to the church than they actually did) cost them their lives. They were Christians, and they were in serious error. Their error did not mean they were not Christian; their Christianity did not legitimize their error.
The Apostle Peter was, on one occasion at least, afraid to be seen associating with Gentiles, for fear of reprisals from Jews who felt Jews and Gentiles should never mix. So when Jewish people were not around, he was willing to eat with Gentile friends; when Jews were present, he avoided Gentiles (Gal 2:11-13). His hypocrisy in the face of prejudice was wrong, yet no one doubts he was a Christian. Yet that in no way justified his hypocrisy.
In other words, being a Christian is no indication, in and of itself, that your life is pleasing to God. And any honest believer knows that. It is a waste of time to argue intangibles, such as whether or not a 'gay Christian' is truly born again, or "saved." We may argue that if he continues in sin, he risks hardening his heart toward God, or reaping corruption, since God is not mocked. But we cannot see inside his soul to determine how hardened or deceived he may be.
No matter how proud, confident or loved by God a person is, he can be walking in darkness without knowing it. That is exactly why we have an objective standard by which to judge our actions. "Take heed unto thyself," Paul told Timothy, "and unto the doctrine. Continue in them, for in doing this thou shalt both save thyself, and them that hear thee" (1 Tim 4:16).
Saying "I'm Christian and gay" proves nothing. The question shouldn't be Can a person be homosexual and still belong to God? But rather, Is homosexuality right or wrong according to the Bible. --Joe Dallas

The love that dare not speak its name has become the love that never knows when to shut up.
Robertson Davies, Murther and the Walking Spirits

Wilde was a man who cloaked those things in flowery language....He never used the word "sodomitic"....he would express horror at such language. - Lord Alfred Douglas in Wilde's last Stand, Philip Hoare, p152

He (Wilde) was tghe most conceited man that ever lived. - Lord Alfred Douglas in Wilde's last Stand, Philip Hoare, p153

All of this illiberalism [of the campaigns to defund and exclude the Boy Scouts from public facilities] stems from a fundamental change in the gay rights movement. It began by arguing that adults should be free to do what they choose in the privacy of their own bedrooms, without government interference. But today, the movement advocates the very different proposition that the power of government should be used to force everyone to approve of homosexual conduct, morally and socially. That cannot be achieved by liberal means, because it is not a liberal goal.-- Peter Ferrara

Hume-Williams repled, "When did you cease to approve of sodomy?'. ' 'When did I you cease to approve of sodomy?', retorted Douglas, 'I do not think that is a fair question. That is like asking: When did you leave off beating your wife?' - Philip Hoare, Wilde's last Stand, p156

Billing asked Douglas if he knew 'from his own knowlegde' that Wilde was a 'sexual and moral pervert'. 'Yes, I do,' said Douglas. 'he admitted it; he never attempted to disguise it after his conviction....whoever was there,, he always began by admitting it, glorying in it.' Douglas said he regretted ever having met Wilde. 'I think he had a diabolical influence on everyone he met. I think he is the greatest force for evil that has appeared in Europe during the last 350 yeras.' .....he was the agent of the devil in every possible way. he was a man whose whole object in life was to attack and sneer at virtue, and to undermine it in every way and by every possible means, sexually and otherwise.He thought all Wilde's works ought to be destroyed, 'I do not think he ever wrote a thing in his life that had not an evil intention.....except perhaps a stray poem or two.' - Philip Hoare, Wilde's last Stand, p152

As one gay activist, quoted by Rotello, wrote: "Gay liberation means sexual freedom. And sexual freedom means more sex, better sex, sex in the bushes, in the toilets, in the baths, sex without love, sex without harassment, sex at home and sex in the streets." It also means death. David Horowitz, 1997

Thus it is striking that EVERY TIME HOMOSEXUAL PRACTICE IS MENTIONED IN THE SCRIPTURES, IT IS CONDEMNED. There are only two ways one can neutralise the biblical witness against homosexual behaviour: by gross misinterpretation or by moving away from a high view of Scripture.
"The Loving Opposition" Stanton L. Jones From Christianity Today, Vol. 37, July 19, 1993, pp. 18-25

It would encourage clear thinking on these matters if persons were not characterised as heterosexual or homosexual, but as individuals who have had certain amounts of heterosexual experience or homosexual experience. Instead of using these terms as substantives which stand for persons, or even as adjectives to describe persons, they may be better be used to describe the nature of the overt sexual relations, or of the stimuli to which an individual erotically responds.
Sexual Behaviour in the Human Male Kinsey et al 1948 p617

Homosexuality is the sexual plague of a monogamous society gone promiscuous. These societies that sow the winds of heterosexual freedom ironically reap the whirlwind of homosexual perversion. John W Miller

One of the problems with the current dialogue on homosexuality is that the two sides are looking at the issue differently.Homosexuals prefer to see their homosexuality as an inherent part of their ontology, something as ineradicable as ethnicity. On this basis they seek class status in the eyes of the law, and if the law accepts their presupposition of homosexuality as an inherent property of their being, then it would be consistent for the law to follow through with all the rights and privileges afforded to any other class.But most folk on the other side of the debate see homosexuality not as an inherent property of a person, but rather something that is behaviorally predicated. This is to say, that one 'is' or comes to be called a homosexual in the same sense that one 'is' or comes to be called a philatelist, a golfer, a fisherman, or even an athlete." Robinson W. Mitchell

In the gay [Catholic] community, it would seem, the maxim is: love the sin and love the sinner, but hate anyone who calls it a sin or him a sinner. -- Richard John Neuhaus, "Scandal Time (Continued)", _First Things, June/July 2002.

Do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: neither the sexually immoral, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor men who practice homosexuality, nor thieves, nor the greedy, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God. And such were some of you. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus and by the Spirit of our God (6:9&endash;11, ESV).
What is Paul talking about in this vice list? Answer: Lifestyles, regular behaviour patterns, habits of mind and action. He has in view not single lapses followed by repentance, forgiveness, and greater watchfulness (with God's help) against recurrence, but ways of life in which some of his readers were set, believing that for Christians there was no harm in them.
What is Paul saying about homosexuality? Answer: Those who claim to be Christ's should avoid the practice of same-sex physical connection for orgasm, on the model of heterosexual intercourse. Paul's phrase, "men who practice homosexuality," covers two Greek words for the parties involved in these acts. The first, arsenokoitai, means literally "male-bedders," which seems clear enough. The second, malakoi, is used in many connections to mean "unmanly," "womanish," and "effeminate," and here refers to males matching the woman's part in physical sex. - J I Packer

History shows that male homosexuality, which like prostitution flourishes with urbanisation and soon becomes predictably ritualised, always tends toward decadence. Camille Paglia, Salon

Martin Luther King, leading the civil-rights movement in the '60s, appealed to the American nation to return to the core truths and values embodied in our Declaration of Independence. The rights that blacks sought then were not some new political agenda. Dr.King reminded Americans of their own faith and the eternal truths that hold this country together &endash; that all men are created equal and that we are endowed by our Creator with inalienable rights. The civil-rights movement did not challenge our beliefs as a nation. It was a movement to call a nation to task that strayed from its own ideals.
The "gay" movement would like to present itself as the latest chapter in the civil-rights movement. But it is quite the opposite. Homosexuals are not pushing this nation to return to eternal truths from which it has strayed. They are pushing us to deny that there are eternal truths and to move in the direction of a world where we make up the rules as we go along. Such a world is, of course, a world defined ultimately by politics and power.
Such a political world, where truths and principles are gone, and where we think the world is defined by government, defines the welfare state. --Star Parker, "Politics of Sex, Politics of Race

Whether these matters are to be regarded as sport, or as earnest, we must not forget that this pleasure is held to have been granted by nature to male and female when conjoined for the work of procreation; the crime of male with male, or female with female, is an outrage on nature and a capital surrender to lust of pleasure.--Plato, The Collected Dialogues of Plato, including the Letters, Edited by Edith Hamilton and Huntington Cairns, Bollingen Series LXXI, 1961, Princeton University Press, Princeton, N. J., p. 1237.

Our democracy is currently facing a crisis that I would like to a consider a "tyranny of the minority." Under the guise of fighting for individual rights, which Americans hold as precious, homosexual activists are trying to obtain an artificial right that would in no way be individual. Using sympathetic judges, these activists are overstepping their bounds as citizens of this country. They believe that their individual freedoms are insufficient&emdash;they are trying to steal an institution that doesn't belong to them.They compare their quest to that of the civil rights activists of Martin Luther King's day.The difference between the two? Black-Americans simply sought the individual rights that they were entitled to under the Constitution. Is marriage an individual right? No, it is neither individual nor a right. Marriage is a social contract that at its basic meaning has the type of sexual relations that only opposite-gendered couples can perform as a requirement. This is thievery of a social institution. A single woman cannot claim the title "Mrs." because that would be misrepresenting who she is and would devalue the status preserved for married women. The definition is set, regardless of whether a single woman feels she is being discriminated against. In the same way, a definition of marriage is set so that it precludes homosexual relationships. For a homosexual couple to claim marriage status, they would be misrepresenting themselves and devaluing a status preserved for opposite-gendered couples. - Stephen Roberts

"Gay" used to be one of the most agreeable words in the language. Its appropriation by a notably morose group is an act of piracy. Arthur M. Schlessinger, 1976

A popular God-is-dead book in the United States argues that homosexuality will become normal in a humanistic society where there is no restriction of morals which come from religion. St. Paul declared homosexuality and atheism were related to one another as effect to cause. --Fulton John Sheen (1895-1979) _Footprints in a Darkened Forest_ [1967]

I think homosexuality is a disgusting abomination. There I said it. Is that so wrong? Please don't blame me. Decidedly more than one in ten are with me on this, but the pressure to remain in the closet is powerful. People actually hate people like me, all because of what we think in the privacy of our own minds. And the thing is, I didn't even choose to be this way. God made, or rather remade me this way. No one in their right mind would actually chose to be this way. So what I want to know is, who are these people to judge me? What gives them the right to say that what I believe is wrong? Why can't we all just learn to love each other? You know it's not as though I haven't tried to be the other way. But even thinking about what they do turns my stomach. So I have an aversion, sue me. (No, please don't. In these dark days for folks like me, you might actually win). I only hope that by coming out I might give the courage to others like me, that they might know that there are people who will accept them, just the way they are, that won't try to change them, or judge them. If only we all would come out. Maybe then we wouldn't be such social outcasts. Maybe then we could actually have a good character or two on television. Maybe then we won't have our homes covered with graffiti, our windows smashed in by bricks. Maybe then people like me would feel safe in the world.
All you ahomophiles out there, come on out and join me. It is so freeing out in the open. Be what you are, without shame and fear. R. C. Sproul, Jnr.

We do not have to affirm homosexuals in their homosexuality, as our culture insists, but we do have to love them, and we haven't yet figured out how to do that. Daniel Taylor, Deconstructing the gospel of tolerance., Christianity Today. January 11, 1999 Vol. 43, No. 1, Page 42.

The homosexual subculture based on brief, barren assignations is, in part, a dark mirror of the sex-obsessed majority culture. George Will, 1977

The middle age of buggers is not to be contemplated without horror.--Virginia Woolf


HOME: The place where we are treated best and grumble most.

Home wasn't built in a day. - Jane Sherwood Ace (1905-1974) "Easy Aces" Radio Show, 1928-1945; in "The Fine Art of Hypochondria by Goodman Ace," 1966.

What is more agreeable than one's home?--Marcus Tullius Cicero (106-43 BC), _Ad Familiares_

And meadow rivulets overflow,
And drops on gate-bars hang in a row,
And rooks in families homeward go,
And so do I.
Thomas Hardy
Home is where you hang your head. Groucho Marx (1890-1977 )

This is the true nature of home--it is the place of peace; the shelter, not only from all injury, but from all terror, doubt, and division. --John Ruskin (1819-1900) _Sesame and Lilie of King' Treasuries_

Holy Spirit -

True discrimination between right and wrong does not then depend on the acuteness of our intelligence, but on the wisdom of the Spirit.
J Calvin on Luke 24:16

There is no worse screen to block out the Spirit than confidence in our own intelligence. J Calvin on Luke 24:45

As God alone is a fit witness of himself in his Word, so also the Word will not find any acceptance in men's hearts before it is sealed by the inward testimony of the Spirit. The same Spirit, therefore, who has spoken by the mouth of the prophets must penetrate into our hearts, to persuade us that they faithfully proclaimed what has been divinely commanded.
John Calvin, The Institutes of the Christian Religion [1559]

As a man, looking steadfastly on a dial, cannot perceive the shadow move at all, yet viewing it after a while, he shall perceive that it hath moved; so, in the hearing of the Word, but especially in the receiving of the Lord's Supper, a man may judge even his own faith, and other graces of God, to be little or nothing increased, neither can he perceive the motion of God's Spirit in him at that time; yet by the fruits and effects thereof, he shall afterward perceive that God's Spirit hath little by little wrought greater faith and other graces in him. Daniel Cawdray

We preach and pray, and you hear; but there is no motion Christ-ward until the Spirit of God blows upon them. --John Flavel

Spiritual rest maketh no man idle, spiritual walking maketh no man weary.NATHANIEL HARDY

Faith and the Spirit go together, but the Spirit is not always revealed.So Cornelius had the Holy Spirit before Peter came to him, although hedidn't know it. Those in the book of Acts who said, "We don't know the Holy Spirit," also had the Spirit, just as the patriarchs in the Old Testament had Christ, although they didn't know him. They clung to the word, and through it they received the Holy Spirit. Later in the book ofActs he was manifested to them outwardly. It's to be understood thus:The Word comes first, and with the Word the Spirit breathes upon my heart so that I believe. Then I feel that I have become a different person and I recognize that the Holy Spirit is there. Accordingly these are two things: to have the Holy Spirit and to know that you have him. When somebody speaks in your ear, you hardly hear his words before you feel his breath, so strong is the breath. Even so, when the Word is proclaimed, the Holy Spirit accompanies it and breathes upon your heart. -- Luther's Tabletalk No. 402

Examples do strangely charm us into imitation. When holiness is pressed upon us we are prone to think that it is a doctrine calculated for angels and spirits whose dwelling is not with flesh. But when we read the lives of them that excelled in holiness, though they were persons of like passions with ourselves, the conviction is wonderful and powerful. - COTTON MATHER

Thou O Spirit, that dost prefer
Before all Temples th' upright heart and pure.
John Milton. 1608-1674. Paradise Lost. Book I, 17 - 18

All other ways of mortification are vain, all helps leave us helpless, it must be done by the Spirit. J Owen

Every time we say, 'I believe in the Holy Spirit,' we mean that we believe that there is a living God able and willing to enter human personality and change it. J. B. Phillips, Plain Christianity [1954]

The Holy Spirit does something more in each of God's elect than he does in the non-elect; he works in them 'both to will and to do of God's good pleasure.' A. W. PINK

If God have given you the earnest of the Spirit, as part of the payment of the principal sum, ye have to rejoice; for our Lord will not lose His earnest, neither will He go back, or repent Him of His bargain. - Samuel Rutherford, Letters IV. To LADY KENMURE, ANWOTH, Feb. 1, 1630

The best men in the estate of grace would be in darkness, and call their estate into question, if the Holy Ghost did not convince them, and answer all cavils for them; and therefore we must not only be convinced at first by the Spirit, but in our continued course of Christianity. This, therefore, should make us come to God's ordinances with holy devotion. O Lord, vouchsafe the Spirit of revelation, and take the scales from mine eyes, that as these are truths, they may be truths to me! Do thou away my soul, that I may cast myself upon thy mercy in Christ! - RICHARD SIBBES

The renewal of our natures is a work of great importance. It is not to be done in a day. We have not only a new house to build up, but an old one to pull down. George Whitefield

It is an undoubted truth that every doctrine that comes from God, leads to God; and that which doth not tend to promote holiness is not of God.

Beware the gifts of the Spirit without the fruits of the Spirit - Michael Wilcock, The Message of Judges, p86

Holland -

Holland . . . lies so low, they're only saved by being dammed.
Thomas Hood (1799-1845) Up the Rhine(1840) ``Letter from Martha Penny to Rebecca Page''

Holiness -

You become like what you look at.

It takes more of the power of the Spirit to make the farm, the home, the office, the store, the shop holy than it does to make the Church holy. It takes more of the power of the Spirit to make Saturday holy than to make Sunday holy. It takes much more of the power of the Spirit to make money for God than to make a talk for God.

Cowards never won heaven. Do not claim that you are begotten of God and have His royal blood running in your veins unless you can prove your lineage by this heroic spirit; to dare to be holy in spite of men and devils.

I find that both mind and body are quickly tired with intenseness and fervor in the things of God. Oh that I could be as incessant as angels in devotion and spiritual fervor. -- David Brainerd

Has the luster of the infinite holiness of God ever shone upon your heart and drawn your heart to Him? And has your heart ever leaped at the sight of the brightness of His holiness? Is this why you love Him? If so, you know God correctly and your heart has been correctly drawn to Him. -- Jeremiah Burroughs

God's name is glorious because of holiness, because it is the special end of all His works to advance holiness. When an artist draws something, he shows art in the beginning, but when he comes to the end he shows the excellency of his workmanship. It is so with God. God will be honored in all His works of creation and providence, but now He comes to the height and zenith of all, and it is that He might be honored as a holy God and that He might have a holy people to honour Him here and to all eternity. Holiness is that at which God aimed in creating heaven and earth. -- Jeremiah Burroughs

Holiness is the very principle of eternal life, the very beginning of eternal life in the heart, and that which will certainly grow up to eternal life. -- Jeremiah Burroughs

People do not drift toward holiness. Apart from grace-driven effort, people do not gravitate toward godliness, prayer, obedience to Scripture, faith, and delight in the Lord. We drift toward compromise and call it tolerance; we drift toward disobedience and call it freedom; we drift toward superstition and call it faith. We cherish the indiscipline of lost self-control and call it relaxation; we slouch toward prayerlessness and delude ourselves into thinking we have escaped legalism; we slide toward godlessness and convince ourselves we have been liberated. D.A. Carson, For the Love of God, Cited in "Reflections," Christianity Today (July 31, 2000)

Perfect holiness is the aim of the saints on earth, and it is the reward of the saints in Heaven.--Joseph Caryl

All the Spirit's operations, how rough soever some of them may appear, are always useful to believers, and tend to make them fruitful. To this end the most sharp influences contribute as well as the more comfortable.- JAMES DURHAM

As God delights in his own beauty, he must necessarily delight in the creature's holiness which is a conformity to and participation of it, as truly as [the] brightness of a jewel, held in the sun's beams, is a participation or derivation of the sun's brightness, though immensely less in degree. JONATHAN EDWARDS

Oh, that I might live to see that day when professors shall not walk in vain show; when they shall please themselves no more with a name to live, being spiritually dead; when they shall no more (as many of them now are) be a company of frothy, vain, and unserious persons, but the majestic beams of holiness shining from their heavenly and serious conversation shall awe the world, and command reverence from all who are about them; when they shall warm the hearts of those who come nigh them, so that men shall say, 'God is truly in these men! - JOHN FLAVEL

God Himself underwrites your battle and has appointed His own Son 'the captain of your salvation'. W Gurnall

Spiritual rest maketh no man idle, spiritual walking maketh no man weary.NATHANIEL HARDY

No attribute of God is more dreadful to sinners than His holiness.-- Matthew Henry

Holiness is the end of redemption, for Christ gave Himself for us that He might redeem us from all iniquity and purify unto Himself a peculiar people zealous of good works. CHARLES HODGE

If on our daily course our mind
Be set to hallow all we find,
New treasures still of countless price
God will provide for sacrifice.
The trivial round, the common task
Will furnish all we ought to ask;
Room to deny ourselves -- a road
To bring us daily nearer God. John Keble (1792-1866)

Study universal holiness of life. Your whole usefulness depends on this, for your sermons last but an hour or two: your life preaches all week. If Satan can only make a covetous minister a lover of praise, of pleasure, of good eating, he has ruined your ministry. Give yourself to prayer, and get your texts, your thoughts, your words, from God. --Robert Murray M'Cheyne

Christian holiness, whether for the church or for the individual, can never be a static thing, something gained once for all. It has to be maintained amidst conflicts and perils that are renewed day by day. It is a moving thing; it can only exist as a function of plilgrimage.---- Stephen Neill in The Lion Christian Quotation Collection, 1997

A soul may be in as thriving a state when thirsting, seeking and mourning after the Lord as when actually rejoicing in Him; as much in earnest when fighting in the valley as when singing upon the mount. John Newton

An ineffably holy God, who has the utmost abhorrence of all sin, was never invented by any of Adam's fallen descendants. A. W. PINK

I am convinced that the first step toward attaining higher standard of holiness is to realize more fully the amazing sinfulness of sin. J. C. RYLE

If your religion does not make you holy, it will damn you. It is simply painted pageantry to go to hell in.
Charles Spurgeon

Make sure that you let God's grace work in your souls by accepting whatever He gives you, and giving Him whatever He takes from you. True holiness consists in doing God's work with a smile.... Mother Teresa of Calcutta (1910-1997)

We can not grasp the true meaning of the divine holiness by thinking of someone or something very pure and then raising the concept to the highest degree we are capable of. God's holiness is not simply the best we know, infinitely better. We know nothing like divine holiness. It stands apart,unique, unapproachable, incomprehensible and unattainable. Only the spirit of the Holy can impart to the human spirit the knowledge of the holy. A. W. TOZER

We have learned to live with unholiness and have come to look upon it as the natural and expected thing. A. W. TOZER

There are no shortcuts to holiness. There is no easy way to conquer the flesh. Christian character is a matter of growth, not of secrets or formulas. Growth takes time. It also takes the discipline of prayer, of study, of heart searching, of sensitivity to the Holy Ghost's pleading, and of consistent obedience. It must always begin with a renewed thankfulness for the never-ending grace of God, and a sense of being set free repeatedly to a life of holiness.-- John White

History -

History must be our deliverer not only from the undue influence of other times, but from the undue influence of our own, from the tyranny of environment and the pressures of the air we breathe. Lord Acton (Cited in Eerdmans Handbook to the History of Christianity (Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1977), p. 2.

There is a hidden double standard. The past can be relativized simply by explaining the misconceptions of the ancient worldview. The present, however, remains strangely immune from relativization...In other words, the New Testament writers are seen as afflicted with a false consciousness rooted in their time, but the contemporary analyst take the consciousness of his time as an unmixed intellectual blessing. The electricity- and radio-users are placed intellectually above the Apostle Paul. PETER BERGER

Legend remains victorious in spite of history.-- Sarah Bernhardt (1844-1923) In "The Speaker's Electronic Reference Collection," AApex Software, 1994.

History does not consist of completed and crumbling ruins; rather it consists of half-built villa abandoned by a bankrupt builder. This world is more like an unfinished suburb than a deserted cemetery.
G K Chesterton {What's Wrong With the World, NY: Dodd, Mead & Co., 1910, p. 53}

Bowing down in blind credulity, as is my custom before mere authority and the tradition of the elders, superstitiously swallowing a story I could not test at the time by experiment of private judgement, I am firmly of the opinion that I was born on the 29 of May 1874 on Campden Hill, Kensington.
G. K. Chesterton, _Autobiography_

We all feel the riddle of the earth without anyone to point it out. The mystery of life is the plainest part of it...Every stone or flower is a hieroglyphic of which we have lost the key; with every step of our lives we enter into the middle of some story which we are certain to misunderstand. G. K. CHESTERTON, Orthodoxy

History will be kind to me for I intend to write it. Winston Churchill

The farther backward you can look, the farther forward you are likely to see. -- Winston Churchill

Not to know what has transacted in former times is to continue always a child. -- Marcus Tullius Cicero

Our history is not our destiny.... Alan Cohen, Wake-Up Calls: You Don't Have to Sleepwalk Through Your Life, Love, or Career! by Eric Allenbaugh

If men could learn from history, what lessons it might teach us! But passion and party blind our eyes, and the light which experience gives is a lantern on the stern, which shines only on the waves behind us. - Samuel Taylor Coleridge Table Talk 1835

One of the lessons of history is that nothing is often a good thing to do and always a clever thing to say.-- Will Durant

History never looks like history when you are living through it. It always looks confusing and messy, and it always feels uncomfortable."-John W. Gardner

The Past is past. Learn from it. Grow because of it. Mature in spite of it.--Jim Hamilton

The past is a foreign country; they do things differently there. - Leslie. Poles Hartley (1895 &endash; 1972)

By despising all that has preceded us, we teach others to despise ourselves. -- William Hazlitt, 'On Reading Old Books', 1821

What experience and history teach is this -- that people and governments never have learned anything from history, or acted on principles deduced from it. --Georg Wilhelm F. Hegel, (1770-1831) _Philosophy of History_, Introduction.

The most important thing we can learn from the past is that no earlier civilization has survived. And the larger the pyramids and temples and statues they build in honor of their god or themselves, the harder has been the fall. Most of them have been so completely eradicated that it has taken archaeologists to bring them to light again. -- Thor Heyerdahl, Norwegian archeologist.

That men do not learn very much from the lessons of history is the most important of all the lessons that history has to teach Huxley, Aldous Leonard

The charm of history and its enigmatic lesson consist in the fact that, from age to age, nothing changes and yet everything is completely different.... Aldous Huxley, "The Devils of Loudun"

Nothing changes more consistently than the past;...the past that influencesour lives is not what actually happened but what we believe happened. - Gerald W. Johnson

The study of history is a powerful antidote to contemporary arrogance. It is humbling to discover how many of our glib assumptions, which seem to us novel and plausible, have been tested before, not once but many times and in innumerable guises; and discovered to be, at great human cost, wholly false.
Paul Johnson The Quotable Paul Johnson: A Topical Compilation of His Wit, Wisdom and Satire, edited by George J. Marlin, et al (New York: Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 1994), p. 138.

Those who have no power to judge of past times but by their own, should always doubt their conclusions. - Samuel Johnson: Milton (Lives of the Poets)

History, Stephen said, is a nightmare form which I am trying to wake. - James Joyce, Ulysses

A study of the history of opinion is a necessary preliminary to the emancipation of the mind.
John Maynard Keynes (1883-1946) "The End of Laissez-Faire," ch. 1, 1926.

Man is fatally slow on the uptake; it always takes him until the next generation to understand what's going on. ~Stanislaw Lec (1909-1966)

Ours is an inheritance that has stood the test of time. If it is to stand the test of the future, it needs to be celebrated and taught in the media, in academe and in our schools. I wonder how many children are taught that Britain was the first nation to abolish the slave trade &endash; and that for much of the nineteenth century the prime duty of the Royal Navy was to stop the slave trade of other nations?
I fear that, at present, it has become fashionable not to speak of such things. I fear it is more likely that our children will be shown the low points of our history than the high. It is more likely that they will take away a sense of shame, than of pride. Oliver Letwin MP E pluribus unum - agreeing to differ

History is a people's memory, and without a memory, man is demoted to the lower animals.- Malcolm X (1925-1965) "The Autobiography of Malcolm X," 1965

Wise men say, and not without reason, that whoever wishes to foresee the future must consult the past; for human events ever resemble those of preceding times. This arises from the fact that they are produced by men who have been, and ever will be, animated by the same passions, and thus they must necessarily have the same results. -Niccolo Machiavelli

One cannot and must not try to erase the past merely because it does not fit the present. Golda Meir

Historical knowledge is indispensable for those who want to build a better world.-- Ludwig von Mises

We live in narrative, we live in story. Existence has a story shape to it. We have a beginning and an end, we have a plot, we have characters. EUGENE PETERSON

I have heard professing Christians of our own day speak as though the historicity of the Gospels does not matter -- all that matters is the contemporary Spirit of Christ. I contend that the historicity does matter, and I do not see why we, who live nearly two thousand years later, should call into question an Event for which there were many eye-witnesses still living at the time when most of the New Testament was written. It was no "cunningly devised fable" but an historic irruption of God into human history which gave birth to a young church so sturdy that the pagan world could not stifle or destroy it.
J. B. Phillips, Ring of Truth [1967]

A land without ruins is a land without memories--a land without memories is a land without history. --Abram Joseph Ryan

Chapter 62.A Bad Thing.
America was thus clearly top nation , and History came to a .
W. C. Sellar and R. J. Yeatman , Final wordsof "1066 and All That" (explanatory note: "." is pronounced, full stop, not , period.)

History repeats itself, though less often than historians. --Richard Norton Smith, "Our Literary Leaders", _The Weekly Standard_, Mar 28, 2005

If you want the present to be different from the past, study the past.- Benedict Spinoza(1632-1677) In "The Speaker's Electronic Reference Collection," AApex Software, 1994.

History repeats itself
has to
nobody listens
Steve Turner

Christian history looks glorious in retrospect; but it is made up of constant hard choices and unattractive tasks, accepted under the pressure of the Will of God. Evelyn Underhill (1875-1941)

The Past: Our cradle, not our prison; there is danger as well as appeal in its glamour. The past is for inspiration, not imitation, for continuation, not repetition.--- Israel Zangwill


Hindsight is an exact science.

Don't look back, they might be gaining on you.

Hesitation -

He who hesitates is not only lost, but miles from the next exit.

On the Plains of Hesitation bleach the bones of countless millions who, at the Door of Victory, sat down to wait, and waiting -- died!
George W. Cecil, _The American Magazine_, March 1923, p. 87

Heroes -

He whom prosperity humbles, and adversity strengthens, is the true hero. -- Josh Billings, "Stray Children," Everybody's Friend, 1874

Real heroes are men who fall and fail and are flawed, but win out in the end because they've stayed true to their ideals and beliefs and commitments. - Kevin Costner

True merit, like a river, the deeper it is, the less noise it makes. - Edward F. Halifax (1881 &endash; 1959)

WITHOUT HEROES, we're all plain people and don't know how far we can go.- Bernard Malamud, The Natural


A dog barks when his master is attacked. I would be a coward if I saw that God's truth is attacked and yet would remain silent.... John Calvin (1509-1564)

No man is to lower himself by showing tolerance towards any sort of heretic, least of all a Calvinist. Cardinal Caraffa 1542

The early Church was ascetic, but she proved that she was not pessimistic, simply by condemning the pessimists. The creed declared that man was sinful, but it did not declare that life was evil . . . The condemnation of the early heretics is itself condemned as something crabbed and narrow; but it was in truth the very proof that the Church meant to be brotherly and broad. It proved that the primitive Catholics were specially eager to explain that they did not think man utterly vile; that they did not think life incurably miserable; that they did not think marriage a sin or procreation a tragedy.
G K Chesterton {The Everlasting Man, Garden City, NY: Doubleday Image, 1925, p. 223}

By entertaining of strange persons, men sometimes entertain angels unawares: but by entertaining of strange doctrines, many have entertained devils unaware.-- John Flavel

The English Established Church... will more readily pardon an attack on 38 of its 39 articles than on 1/39 of its income. -- Karl Marx, _Capital_

Contempt of material things as such is, in fact, no more orthodox than pantheism -- it is the great dualist heresy which always lies in wait for an over-spiritualized Christianity.... Dorothy L. Sayers (1893-1957)

There are no heresies in a dead religion. --Andre Suares

Harbhajan is obnoxious - Hayden

BBC says, "There seems no love lost between Hayden (left) and Harbhajan
Matthew Hayden has stoked the row between Australia and India after aiming a staggering verbal volley at Harbhajan Singh and Ishant Sharma.
The Australia batsman claimed his side are fed up with the complaints about their on-field behaviour from India during the tourists' trip down under.

On a Brisbane radio show, Hayden called Harbhajan an "obnoxious weed".

And he also stated he liked the idea of challenging 19-year-old bowler Sharma to "get in the ring" for a fight."

I thought sledging took place on the field not off it. But then Aussies are reknowned for their cultured speech and Indians known as good losers. Not.

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Hasn’t Germany Learned Anything From Its History?

From The Brussels Journal on Sun, 2008-02-24 14:11
"A quote from The Observer, 24 February 2008

Families are fleeing to the UK from Germany to escape a law introduced by Hitler that could lead to their children being taken into care if educated at home. One father, who arrived in Britain with his wife and five children last month, has told The Observer that his family had no choice after being warned that their children would be taken into foster care unless they enrolled them at local schools. Another, who fled in October, said he believed the 70-year-old law was creating hundreds of refugees and forcing families into hiding to protect their children.

Home-schooling has been illegal in Germany since it was outlawed in 1938. Hitler wanted the Nazi state to have complete control of young minds. […] Klaus Landahl, 41, who moved in January from the Black Forest in Germany to the Isle of Wight with his wife, Kathrin, 39, said they had no option but to leave their home, friends and belongings in order to educate their five children, aged between three and 12, legally and without fear. 'It feels like persecution,' he said. 'We had to get to safety to protect our family. We can never go back. If we do, our children will be removed, as the German government says they are the property of the state now.' […]

Jonathan Skeet, who is British-born, said that he, his wife and five children, aged between two and 11, were driven from Lüdenscheid after the authorities froze their bank account, removed money from it and confiscated their car. […] 'It was crippling,' he said. 'When we lived in Germany we wanted to live a very inconspicuous and quiet life. But instead we ended up in direct confrontation with a very powerful state.'

About 800 families are believed to educate their children at home illegally [in Germany]. Stephanie Edel, who runs the Schulbildung in Familieninitiative, a German organisation that aims to support those who educate at home, said that last year some 78 home-schooled children fled Germany with their parents. 'It is very dangerous to home-educate here,' she said. 'Home-educators have to learn to expect anything and have to be ready to leave overnight.' […]

Last year, in an extreme example, 15-year-old Melissa Busekros was removed from her family. […] Both domestic and EU courts have ruled in the German state's favour on numerous occasions in recent years."

A taste of what is to come if laws are harmonised in the EUSSR?

Anti-depressants 'of little use'

BBC saya, "Anti-depressant prescription rates have soared New generation anti-depressants have little clinical benefit for most patients, research suggests.
A University of Hull team concluded the drugs actively help only a small group of the most severely depressed. Marjorie Wallace, head of the mental health charity Sane, said that if these results were confirmed they could be "very disturbing".
But the makers of Prozac and Seroxat, two of the commonest anti-depressants, said they disagreed with the findings. A spokesman for GlaxoSmithKline, which makes Seroxat, said the study only looked at a "small subset of the total data available".
And Eli Lilly, which makes Prozac, said that "extensive scientific and medical experience has demonstrated it is an effective anti-depressant". Patients are advised not to stop taking their medication without first consulting a doctor.
The researchers accept many people believe the drugs do work for them, but argue that could be a placebo effect - people feel better simply because they are taking a medication which they think will help them. In total, the Hull team, who published their findings in the journal PLoS Medicine, reviewed data on 47 clinical trials.
They reviewed published clinical trial data, and unpublished data secured under Freedom of Information legislation. They focused on drugs which work by increasing levels of the mood controlling chemical serotonin in the brain. These included fluoxetine (Prozac) and paroxetine (Seroxat), from the class known as Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors (SSRIs), alongside another similar drug called venlafaxine (Efexor) - all commonly prescribed in the UK. There seems little reason to prescribe anti-depressant medication to any but the most severely depressed patients The number of prescriptions for anti-depressants hit a record high of more than 31 million in England in 2006 - even though official guidance stresses they should not be a first line treatment for mild depression. There were 16.2m prescriptions for SSRIs alone. The researchers found that even the positive effects seen on severely depressed patients were relatively small, and open to interpretation. The seemingly good result was based more on the fact that the dummy placebo pills produced less of an effect in these patients, rather than on any notable positive response to the anti-depressants themselves. Lead researcher Professor Irving Kirsch said: "The difference in improvement between patients taking placebos and patients taking anti-depressants is not very great. "This means that depressed people can improve without chemical treatments. "Given these results, there seems little reason to prescribe anti-depressant medication to any but the most severely depressed patients, unless alternative treatments have failed to provide a benefit." Professor Kirsch said the findings called into question the current system of reporting drug trials. Dr Tim Kendall, deputy director of the Royal College of Psychiatrists Research Unit, has published research concluding that drug companies tend only to publish research which shows their products in a good light. He said the Hull findings undermined confidence in the ability to draw meaningful conclusions about the merit of drugs based on published data alone. He called for drug companies to be forced to publish all their data. The National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) is currently reviewing its guidance on the use of antidepressants. Marjorie Wallace of Sane commented: "If these results were upheld in further studies, they would be very disturbing.
"The newer anti-depressants were the great hope for the future.... These findings could remove what has been seen as a vital choice for thousands in treating what can be a life-threatening condition." Alan Johnson, the Health Secretary, has announced that 3,600 therapists are to be trained during the next three years in England to increase patient access to talking therapies, which ministers see as a better alternative to drugs. "

I have long held that I would rather consel than dispense SSDIs, most of which may be given to people with unrealistic expectations of happiness. With the placebo effect pronounced I would cynically suggest a new generation of homeopathic antideppresants could find a market.