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"You have never written a truly spiritual novel," the cop told him. He spoke slowly, enunciating each word with care. "It is your great unrecognized failing, and it is at the center of your petulant, self-indulgent behavior. You mock the God who created you, and in doing so you mortify your own pneuma and glorify the mud which is your sarx. Do you understand me?-Steven King, Desperation
Johnny opened his mouth, then closed it again. To speak or not to speak, that was the question.
The cop solved the dilemma for him. Without looking up from the wheel, without so much as a glance into the rearview mirror, he placed the double barrels of the shotgun on his right shoulder and pointed them back through the wire mesh. Johnny moved instinctively, sliding to the left, trying to get away from those huge dark holes.
Although the cop still did not look up, the muzzles of the gun tracked him as precisely as a radar-controlled servomotor.
He might have a mirror in his lap, Johnny thought, and then: But what good would that do? He wouldn't see anything but the roof of the fucking car. What the hell is going on here?
"Answer me," the cop said. His voice was dark and brooding. His head was still bent. The hand not holding the shotgun continued to tap at the wheel, and another gust of wind hammered the cruiser, driving sand and alkali dust against the window in a fine spray. "Answer me now. I won't wait. I don't have to wait. There's always another one coming along. So ... do you understand what I just told you?"
"Yes," Johnny said in a trembling voice. "Pneuma is the old Gnostic word for spirit. Sarx is the body. You said, correct me if I'm wrong --" Just not with the shotgun, please don't correct me with the shotgun. "-- that I've ignored my spirit in favor of my body. And you could be right. You could very well be right."
He moved to the right again. The shotgun muzzles tracked his movements precisely, although he could swear that the springs of the backseat made no sound beneath him and the cop could not see him unless he was using a television monitor or something.
"Don't toady to me," the cop said wearily. "That will only make your fate worse."
"I..." He licked his lips. "I'm sorry. I didn't mean to--"
"Sarx is not the body; soma is the body. Sarx is the flesh of the body. The body is made of flesh -- as the word was reputedly made flesh by the birth of Jesus Christ -- but the body is more than the flesh that makes it. The sum is greater than the parts. Is that so hard for an intellectual such as yourself to understand?"
The shotgun barrel, moving and moving. Tracking like an autogyro.
"Thought of it that way? Oh please. Even a spiritual naÔf like you must understand that a chicken dinner is not a chicken. Pneuma...soma...and s-s-s--"
All of which is to say: the body without spirit is flesh. The spirit, if it exists without body, is a ghost. The soul is the shoreline where the body meets the spirit. It is only in the joining of spirit (or perhaps you prefer to call it will) with body, that we see the emergence of soul.
[ add comment ] ( 16 views ) | permalink | print article | ( 3 / 1637 )
If I ruled the world, Plentiful sex certainly sounds appealing. But then it comes to mind that I might create rules to protect my sisters, daughters, and wives - not because I'm a good person, but because I don't like the idea of others having sex with my wife. I certainly don't let other people drive off with my car without permission! So let's revize our slogan -- "if men ruled the world, there'd be sex readily available, but OUR women would be off limits to other guys." We might even create a class of women whose job it is to provide sex.
But there are even more insidious underlying assumptions here: what women want isn't under consideration, and perhaps women only deny men sex as a cruel way to exercise power over men -- certainly there's no other conceivable reason not to have sex with me! There is no room in this reality for women who are reasonable independent beings who happen to not want sex with me.
Even deeper, it is commonly understood that all men think about and want sex all the time. And sure, if a hot chick in a short skirt wandered by right now, I would not be thinking of golf. But in fact, that common understanding is utter nonsense. In high school I had a strong interest in sex. Like a thirsty sailor on a desert island, I occasionally felt that I'd do anything for it. Then sure enough, there was a girl who would have had sex with me. But I could not have a serious conversation with her, ever, and so I avoided spending time with her, in spite of the obvious advantages such an arrangement would have brought to me. While all men face real urges, it's not at all as if these urges control you. I'm no Ghandi: anything I do, anyone can do.
So given that every time a man has sex, it is a voluntary choice rather than some type of undeniable primal instinct nonsense, then the times a man does have sex are quite telling. When a man like Dominique Strauss-Kahn (French economist, lawyer &politician) who has every opportunity to get sex that a man can have: money, power, being french... When a man like that commits rape, it is sheer, pure hatred of women that motivates him. He could have sex with a wife, a lover, several lovers and a hooker. But none of them would feel the fear and revulsion that he wishes to cause. None of them would suffer enough to take his mind of the sheer worthlessness of his own existence.
"So for all the girls out there, itís possible to be a good girl. Iím going to try to make it cool." -Reese Witherspoon
It's hard to attack someone as nice and naive as Reese, but she's a bit of an idiot, you know? She thinks that girls having sex is the problem, when in fact the problem is slut-shaming girls who have sex. Girls, and I hope this is news to no-one, have always had sex. If they ever stop, humanity will cease to exist. So the good-girl fetish is the problem. Girls should be allowed to enjoy sex, and enjoy their bodies, and yet still have autonomy over their bodies. A girl who is "asking for it" is never the problem -- perverts who break the law and cause pain and suffering are the problem.
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"the only difference between a caprice and a life-long passion is that the caprice pasts longer". -Oscar Wilde"the only difference between a caprice and a life-long passion is that the caprice pasts longer". -Oscar Wilde
[ add comment ] ( 154 views ) | permalink | print article | ( 3 / 1777 )
"The nineteenth century dislike of realism is the rage of Caliban in seeing his face in the glass" -Oscar Wilde"The nineteenth century dislike of realism is the rage of Caliban in seeing his face in the glass" -Oscar Wilde
[ add comment ] ( 149 views ) | permalink | print article | ( 3.1 / 2011 )
"Those who find ugly meanings in beautiful things are corrupt without being charming. This is a fault." -Oscar Wilde"Those who find ugly meanings in beautiful things are corrupt without being charming. This is a fault." -Oscar Wilde
[ add comment ] ( 161 views ) | permalink | print article | ( 3 / 1894 )
Far better put off by physical inability than by weakness of character. And once disappointment has left its sharp pangs, success comes easily in other venues. It is only after great failure that one achieves great success, and then only from great success does one truly learn fear.
Or perhaps this paraphrase of Tricia McMillan says it best, "I've learned there are time when one must never go back, and times when you must always go back. I have not learned to tell the difference between such times."
[ add comment ] ( 157 views ) | permalink | print article | ( 2.9 / 1747 )
In devastated areas, drinking water is difficult to find, and often suspect. Far better to avoid exposing babies to extra germs whenever we can.
There are many gray areas in life, but raising healthy happy babies is not one of those areas. No matter how horrible a disaster, no matter how risky life may become, there is no substitute for old fashioned mama milk. Formula is damaging to baby brains, significantly lowering their expected IQ. It also lacks vital antibodies and enzymes, making them more suspect to disease.
No matter how much money companies like Nestle spend to spread falsehoods about the "benefits of formula," the cold hard fact is that cow milk supplemented with vitamins will never be as good for your baby as the food your mama-ry glands will provide.
It isn't pure instinct though, you'll need to talk to a lactation consultant and/or mamas with experience. And while breastfeeding is difficult in the first few days, it quickly becomes an integral part of your day, requiring none of the shopping, refrigerating, heating and mixing of those synthetic milk products.
[ add comment ] ( 210 views ) | permalink | print article | ( 3 / 1807 )