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February 11, 2012

Bibliomancy

Filed under: Uncategorized — thirdxlucky @ 7:50 am

Bibliomancy for this morning. Passages drawn at random from “holy books” to meditate on while I walk:

“We must be content then, in speaking of such things and from such data, to set forth the truth roughly and in outline; in other words, since we are speaking of general matter and from general data, to draw also only conclusions merely general. And in the same spirit should each person receive what we say: for the man of education will seek exactness so far in each subject as the nature of the thing admits, it being plainly much the same absurdity to put up with a mathematician who tries to persuade instead of proving, and to demand strict demonstrative reasoning of a Rhetorician.” – Aristotle, Nicomachean Ethics, pg. 3

. . .

Chapter 20 (Annotations)
What difference between yes and no?

Chao-chou asked Nan-ch’uan, “What is the Tao?”
Nan-ch’uan said, “Everyday mind is the Tao.”
Chao-chou said, “How can I approach it?”
Nan-ch’uan said, “The more you try to approach it, the farther away you’ll be.”
“But if I don’t get close, how can I understand it?”
The Master said, “It’s not a question of understanding or not understanding. Understanding is delusion; not understanding is indifference. But when you reach the unattainable Tao, it is like pure space, limitless and serene. Where is there room in it for yes and no?”

I alone don’t care

If good happens, good; if bad happens, good.

– Lao Tzu, Tao Te Ching translated and annotated by Stephen Mitchell, pg. 95

. . .

“‘Verily, this is what you dreamed of: your enemies. That was your hardest dream. But as you woke from them and came to your senses, thus they shall awaken from themselves — and come to you.’

Thus spoke the disciple; and all the others crowded around Zarathustra and took hold of his hands and wanted to persuade him to leave his bed and his sadness and to return to them. But Zarathustra sat erect on his resting place with a strange look in his eyes. Like one coming home from a long soujourn in strange lands, he looked at his disciples and examined their faces; and as yet he did not recognize them. But when they lifted him up and put him on his feet, behold, his eyes suddenly changed; he comprehended all that had happened, stroked his beard, and said in a strong voice:

‘Now then, there is a time for this too. But see to it, my disciples, that we shall have a good meal, and soon. Thus I plan to atone for bad dreams. The soothsayer, however, shall eat and drink by my side; and verily, I shall show him a sea in which he can drown.'” – Friedrich Nietzsche, Thus Spoke Zarathustra, pg. 136

. . .

And finally:

“‘I shan’t beat around the bus, Leigh-Cheri. I have been wondering if your mental health could be described as sound.’

‘By whom?’

‘Interested parties.’

‘Depends on their criteria.’

‘Responsibility and–‘

‘Responsibility to what?’

‘–leadership and–‘

‘Since when has leadership been a criterion for sanity? Or vice versa? Hitler was a gifted leader, even Nixon. Exhibit leadership qualities as an adolescent, they pack you off to law school for an anus transplant. If it takes, you go into government. That’s what Bernard says. He says the reason so many assholes to into politics is that it’s a homing instinct. At any rate, I understand that several romantics have started to follow in my footsteps. That makes me some kind of leader.’

‘At last count, seventeen young women and oen young man have locked themselves in their rooms in emulation of your lovesick self-indulgence. Monkeys and apes will attempt to copy any moron’s routine. I wouldn’t be too proud. But that is not my concern. I am trying ascertain if you are playing with a full deck.’

‘It may or may not be full, but at least it’s my deck.'”

– Tom Robbins, Still Life with Woodpecker

. . .

And now I’m going for a walk in the snow. 🙂

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