How to Join Member's Area Private Library Search Today's Topics p Login
Main Forums Discussion Tech Talk Mature Content Archives
   Nav Win
 Discussion
 Philosophy 101
 In a Dark Place / A Shiver Runs Through
 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18
Follow us on Facebook

 Moderated by: Ron   (Admins )

 
User Options
Format for Better Printing EMail to a Friend Not Available
Admin Print Send ECard
Passions in Poetry

In a Dark Place / A Shiver Runs Through It

 Post A Reply Post New Topic   Go to the Next Oldest/Previous Topic Return to Topic Page Go to the Next Newest Topic 
RSWells
Member Elite
since 06-17-2001
Posts 2607


0 posted 03-04-2002 02:22 PM       View Profile for RSWells   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for RSWells


"Sunlight is the best disinfectant"
                         - Justice Louis Brandeis

Always a god of some sort has existed,
stemming from human need and fears.
Perhaps the lifeless cold body
of the first primordial dead (Able?)
frightened the wild, bewildered
biped whose sleep fraught with visions
of manlike phantoms was a mix
of what would keep him from being
more than just the dust on which he trod.

6th century BC's Greek philosopher Xenophanes
suggested that if horse and oxen had hands
with which to draw, then their god would be
horse and oxenlike, as Ethopian's gods were
flatnosed and black and Thracians grey and redhaired.

450 BC's Anaxagorus shocked conservative Athens
by declaring the sun and moon as merely red hot stones and not divinities.

These phantoms/souls/spirits fed a notion of
man having something to him beyond just the flesh
and all religions offer some kind of post mortem security.

What we call pagans deified dead heroes and frustrated the emerging Christian beliefs by asking questions which could not be answered. Instead the answer was to forcibly suppress the pagan.

Later, during the renaissance, a period of enlightenment or emergence from the dark ages, it was trendy to write of their heathen gods and their percieved images abound in famous paintings.

Charlemagne offered the saxons the choice
of baptism or death.

- - - - - - Andrea Yates - - - - - -

When he saw her
she was in her element.
The only connection to
a hard and dry world
were toes steadying her
floating cross of a
bouyant body to the
pools side.

A father who would
later drown in alzheimers
taught her how to sail
long before his wheelchair
where with her help he
would only gurgle water.

Before her own confinement
in pregnancy,
in a house where the walls
were the bible,
in a marriage of
deference to the man,

Before the hit and run
fire and brimstone
traveling minister
had her in his sights,

Before the bombardment
of Satan,
before loneliness
and depression was
the devil's handiwork,

Before the suicide attempts,
before her husband decided
he was her voice,
before the hospitalizations,
before the insurance ran out,
before the repent or burn zeal,
before the minister wrote
"The role of woman is derived...
from the sins of Eve",
Before scratching bald spots in her head,
Before being led through
the bible to places like
"it would be better for a person
to be flung into the sea
with a stone tied to their
neck than cause little ones to stumble",
Before teaching their children
the colors of the rainbow,
Before she sacrificed the pajama'd
Paul,
Luke,
John,
Mary,
Noah,
Before she sacrificed herself
to the author of "the axis of evil"
who presided over 152 executions
before he mimicked Karla Faye Tucker
(a born again Christian) in a pursed
lip mocking of falsetto'd
"Please don't kill me"
Before the children where buried
near a stream of running water.

"Happy people have no history" - French Proverb

Brad
Member Ascendant
since 08-20-99
Posts 5896
Jejudo, South Korea


1 posted 03-05-2002 01:40 PM       View Profile for Brad   Email Brad   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Brad

Uh, is there a reason you posted this here? Do you want it moved somewhere else?
RSWells
Member Elite
since 06-17-2001
Posts 2607


2 posted 03-05-2002 03:50 PM       View Profile for RSWells   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for RSWells

Uh, What would you suggest?
Brad
Member Ascendant
since 08-20-99
Posts 5896
Jejudo, South Korea


3 posted 03-05-2002 04:02 PM       View Profile for Brad   Email Brad   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Brad

Well, I don't know. The first part seems more narrative in style than philosophical and the second is, of course, a poem.

We've let narratives go before but the philosophical point was made clear by the previous context, so maybe if you could explain a little more specifically what you intend by this, it might help. If you were shooting for a more creative reaction, then yeah, I think you'll get a better reception in Open.

Personally, I like the relationship between Christianity and Neo-classicism in the Renaissance idea. Maybe expand on that a bit?

RSWells
Member Elite
since 06-17-2001
Posts 2607


4 posted 03-06-2002 04:55 PM       View Profile for RSWells   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for RSWells

Rather than be offended, I will endeavor to defend. I said too much and yet not enough. This rant swell as I revisited in growing frustration the circumstances of the indefensible drowning of five helpless children by their own mother, a self described "bad mother" removing her "bad work" from the world.
Now that this infanticide has reached the public forum of a trial, what I felt was inexplicable is attempting to be explained and the culprit is religion.
A fire breathing mobile minister and his wife, the Woronieckis assisted Andrea Yate's husband, Rusty, in breaking down this troubled woman of all self worth and worse, sought to control her by bludgeoning bible verses of subservience to man and the inheirent "Eve-el" of woman.
Ignored were suicide attempts and hospital stays cut short by insurance companies.
This led to the realization that Ms. Yates recognized the death state of Texas as her executioner, a sort of "suicide by S.W.A.T." so often employed by disturbed individuals.
This thread needed only a slight tug to lead me to our president, the current sword of god, who enjoys unprecedented popularity in our crusade like vengeance against Islam whose attack on us was motivated in the fevered fervor of religio/tribalistic hate.
The human toranado circling the rock and stoning the devil who more often than not these days is personified by us, we Christians, who in turn refer to our tribal enemies as the "axis of evil".
All this escalating swirl of doom led on our side by a man who as governor presided over the executions of 153 individuals, one of whom, a born again Christian, Karla Faye Tucker, he mimicked in a falsetto voice "Please, don't kill me".
It's easy to widen the lense to a global picture of;
Northern Ireland where small schoolchildren are threatened and spat upon for the sin of passing through Protestant neighborhoods (christians?,
To India where trains are stopped and people of diverse beliefs immolated,
To Africa, where tribalism replaces apartheid and people of the same color slaughter each other in the millions,
Bosnia, the Phillipines,this astan against that atsan, Israel since before memory.
We've learned nothing from a past where, even seemingly disassociated pockets of humans offered fresh hearts in sacrifice, sought the strength of an enemies spirit through cannibalism and scapegoats to blame collective bad luck on and so murder.
Our early settler's missionaries were nothing more than scouts for slaughter. Nazis, a cult which sought to annihilate the Jews.
In researching the origins of religion I find we are pathetic and fear filled creatures who not only know not where we're going but incredibly, not even where we've been.
Andrea Yates is guilty. She should be put out of harm's way (ours and hers) for the rest of her natural life.
Death penalty? If so strip George W. Bush naked and have him cast the first stone.

"Happy people have no history" - French Proverb

Christopher
Moderator
Member Rara Avis
since 08-02-99
Posts 9130
Purgatorial Incarceration


5 posted 03-06-2002 05:42 PM       View Profile for Christopher   Email Christopher   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Christopher

feel better?

odd tirade you threw down on the floor here - it seemed to wander... and while i can see where you're attempting to interconnect everything, you seem to suggest that the real demon is mankind's inability to look into the past and see what has happened before. and yet, you were able to. so maybe it's a collective rather than individual gripe? i'm not sure... i've read this three times trying to pinpoint a single issue to discuss, and... i don't think it's Andrea Yates. the only 'true' culprit i can gather from what you said is plain, old fashioned violence. let me know if i'm on the right track here, since you've brought up so many different issues i'm not sure which you really want to address.

Christopher
Interloper
Deputy Moderator 1 TourDeputy Moderator 1 Tour
Member Rara Avis
since 11-06-2000
Posts 8628
Deep in the heart


6 posted 03-06-2002 05:51 PM       View Profile for Interloper   Email Interloper   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Interloper

Richard,
I used to be a staunch supporter of the death penalty.  Now, knowing there are innocent people in our jails and prisons (and even on death row as we have found) I do not defend the death penalty with such blind belief.

I do, however, believe in the death penalty where there is no doubt or in the case of a confession (yes, I know I left myself open for argument here).

I agree she should be executed and I would push the button sending poison into her veins.

I am interested in how you got the information you have about the fire breathing preacher.  What is you fact based source?  If it is any part of the media ...

As for we Christians being "pathetic, fear filled" folk I say speak for yourself.  I am neither pathetic nor fear filled.  
Ron
Administrator
Member Rara Avis
since 05-19-99
Posts 9708
Michigan, US


7 posted 03-06-2002 06:28 PM       View Profile for Ron   Email Ron   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Ron's Home Page   View IP for Ron

There is, indeed, a lot of ground to cover here. We've had a few discussions before about capital punishment in the past, and as best I could tell, no one ever changed their position. Though I do find it interesting, Richard, that your comment in one of those old threads was a quote from the Bible?

Since we get to pick and choose, I'd like to go in a different direction. Your very lengthy (and biting) list of injustices all seem to have one thing in common. And I don't think that commonality is religion. Each appears to exemplify an instance of "us" versus "them." Certainly, religion is guilty of this. But so are nations, races, classes, and sometimes even genders. Isn't the resulting injustice equally abhorrent in each case?

Maybe the real problem isn't with "us," or even with "them," but rather with the intolerance of both?
jenni
Senior Member
since 09-11-99
Posts 511
Washington D.C.


8 posted 03-06-2002 07:13 PM       View Profile for jenni   Email jenni   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for jenni

RSWells--

you say "we've learned nothing from the past".  

are you arguing that we, mankind, should somehow do away with religion?  (because religion has in some way been a factor, or maybe even THE factor, in a lot of bad things?)  

is this what we should learn?

jenni
RSWells
Member Elite
since 06-17-2001
Posts 2607


9 posted 03-07-2002 12:34 PM       View Profile for RSWells   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for RSWells

I realized this would be controversial, even unpopular. Sadly, I offer no solution, only the frustration of a man who, upon further study sees the righteous, holier than thou, divisiveness of religious belief as much an "us against them" as the intolerance of the downstream primitives who warred because upstream neighbors defecated in their drinking water.
  Indeed, I do not believe in the death penalty. Any more than a seemingly "civilized" man would stand up and say he believes in war with it's subsequent death and destruction.
  Interloper (my friend); I didn't single out Christians as pathetic and fear filled. It is and has been mankind since his inception to which I alluded. But don't Christians believe "Thou shalt not kill?", or will we twist the words and as usual find something in scripture to support whatever is convenient to argument like; "an eye for an eye...?"
  Yes the preacher exists and the life and death decision on a confused "believer" hangs in the balance 15 miles from where I sit.
Ron; Indeed it is intolerance of which I speak and all religions have proven themselves such on several occasions in history.
Jenni; Only a convincing and miraculous second coming would unify mankind from his various tribes. But even then there would be non believers, and even then two groups, one fearful and one in awe.
As I said, I have no answers but regarding man's future I am fearful.....and that's pathetic.

"Happy people have no history" - French Proverb

Ron
Administrator
Member Rara Avis
since 05-19-99
Posts 9708
Michigan, US


10 posted 03-07-2002 01:14 PM       View Profile for Ron   Email Ron   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Ron's Home Page   View IP for Ron

quote:
Indeed it is intolerance of which I speak and all religions have proven themselves such on several occasions in history.

Institutions are never intolerant. People are.

While I will certainly agree that institutions, including religious, governmental, and social, too often promote intolerance, those policies are always made by people and - more importantly - only exist at the forbearance of the people. We generally get exactly what we deserve. If the Catholic church passed an edict tomorrow condemning all left-handed people to Hell, there would be an uproar heard around the world. Not because lefties are a minority of only ten percent, and not even because it's blatantly unfair, but rather because almost everyone has a friend who is left-handed. Tolerance is just another word for empathy, and we rarely discriminate against those we know well. Yet a similar edict, against the ten percent with a different sexual orientation, goes largely unchallenged.

One of my greatest hopes for the Internet, and for forums like ours, is that people can get to know each other a little better. We will rarely find agreement on everything, and most will never change their opinions on anything. But that's less important than just understanding someone. In understanding, I believe there is hope.

While I understand your cynicism and fear, Richard, I don't share it (most of the time). I enjoy and appreciate excellent writing, and if I looked at 99.9 percent of the population, I would be just as cynical about writing as you are about tolerance. Fortunately, there's that small percentage that continues to feed my reading needs. They give me hope. And the best part is, I know EVERYONE can learn to write better someday.


Brad
Member Ascendant
since 08-20-99
Posts 5896
Jejudo, South Korea


11 posted 03-07-2002 04:03 PM       View Profile for Brad   Email Brad   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Brad

I disagree -- in a way.

I'm not about to rationalize or justify the atrocities you mention, nor am I going to offer hope for the future (though I have tremendous hope), but I will say I do think we learn from the past and I don't think the Yates example is commensurable with the violence in India (one is phsychological and the other is thoroughly historical).

I see Liberalism as a direct consequence of the religious wars in Europe, I see the philosophy of tolerance (which isn't really a philosophy at all, it's a framework for philosophy) as a way of mitigating tribalism and, I hope, a way against attempting to unify humanity in the quest for TRUTH. But Liberalism could not exist without the very religious teachings that it sought to deal with (the Christian idea that all men are equal before God, for example).

That people still ignore or reject these is not a symptom of an unhistorical consciousness but a symptom of a certain historical consciousness, it is the belief that there is ONE WAY to live our lives and that difference in whatever form it takes is somehow wrong.

After all, doesn't the Bible tell us that mankind will not be unified after the second coming, some will still reject the gift.

Perhaps we shouldn't see those who reject it as necessarily evil or wicked but as people who have a different way of looking at things and perhaps that difference should be allowed to follow its own path as long as those who accept the gift are also allowed to follow theirs?

It's not that simple of course, but if you look, I think you can see the positive side as well as the negative.

Looked at historically, Liberalism is a young idea, give it a little more time.

Brad

hush
Senior Member
since 05-27-2001
Posts 1693
Ohio, USA


12 posted 03-07-2002 10:39 PM       View Profile for hush   Email hush   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for hush

RSWells-

your "quotation marks" around certain words make you sound a little too "condescending" for my tastes.

My boyfriend happens to be "a seemingly "civilized" man [who] would stand up and say he believes in war," or rather that war is sometimes necessary... not because he's full of bloodlust, but because he thinks that it is tactically necessary sometimes. Would you call him uncivilized? I think if you had a conversation with him, you'd find him quite civilized- in fact, he's a brilliant person and a great conversationalist.

You seem to be railing against an "us-against-them" mindset and creating on against anyone you feel doesn't share your point of view, or anyone you see as a hypocrite. Sorry, but I don't think that it makes a very convincing case.

Ron-

You said something that I found interesting.

"While I understand your cynicism and fear, Richard, I don't share it (most of the time). I enjoy and appreciate excellent writing, and if I looked at 99.9 percent of the population, I would be just as cynical about writing as you are about tolerance. Fortunately, there's that small percentage that continues to feed my reading needs. They give me hope. And the best part is, I know EVERYONE can learn to write better someday."

I realize you are (at least, I think you are) using this a a hypothetical counterpoint... but I have to question the logic. Are you saying you think everyone in the world should be a writer? Just because it's something you enjoy doesn't mean I will as well. What if architecture is my passion? Or ditch-digging, or cooking? Should I have the desire to better myself as a writer, even if I don't have the desire to write at all?

"Love is a piano
dropped from a four story window
and you were in the wrong place
at the wrong time." -Ani DiFranco

RSWells
Member Elite
since 06-17-2001
Posts 2607


13 posted 03-08-2002 10:05 AM       View Profile for RSWells   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for RSWells

"Thou shalt not kill", I didn't author this.
hush
Senior Member
since 05-27-2001
Posts 1693
Ohio, USA


14 posted 03-08-2002 10:45 PM       View Profile for hush   Email hush   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for hush

Yeah, and whoever said my boyfriend is a Christian? Why do you assume that he would ahve any reason to heed that particular ideal? Why are you touting quotes from a religion you have been protesting for an entire thread? Why are you creating divisions when you profess to seek and end to them? You seem to assume too much... those assumptions being that all "conservatives" (who are presumably "Christians") favor war as a means to settling differences, and therefore, that all "conservatives" are against you. This automatically places you in the category of "liberal," and you seem to assume that all "liberals" will feel the same way you do...

So what exactly are you attacking? The biblical statement and the defiance thereof of "Christians?"

I personally feel that there are so many other (better? more convincing at least) reasons to be against capital punishment. How about the fact that our justice system shouldn't be based on vengeance? What about the fact that innocent people die? What about giving people a chance to rehabilitate? What about the idea (this is one I'm actually stoutly against, but I'll use it as an example here because i can see why it's convincing to some) that life in prison is a worse punishment than death? What about the cost of the appeals process that death row inmates use and reuse, at the cost of taxpayers? Use any of those... but why reduce it to a petty character criticism? "You shouldn't kill because you're being a hypocrite?" Please... we're all hypocrites. Some hypocrisies are worse than others, but it seems like a weak foundation for a principle like this anyway... after all, if the government is seperated from the church, it's a secular institution doing the killing anyway.

"Love is a piano
dropped from a four story window
and you were in the wrong place
at the wrong time." -Ani DiFranco

RSWells
Member Elite
since 06-17-2001
Posts 2607


15 posted 03-09-2002 11:48 AM       View Profile for RSWells   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for RSWells

I'm not interested in denigrating what was a confused rant in the first place to a personal argument with anyone. I've far too ample a temper and too much violence in my own past to expend the energy which I'd rather (in my dotage) convert to writing poetry. I could care less the religious persuasion of your vaunted boyfriend or anyone else for that matter. This was never an indictment against Christianity (which happens to be my background) as much as to highlight the failings of all men since far before Christianity.
  I'm glad you are against capital punishment and are willing to persuade others through discussion to see it's error. Yet I am confused that the inner barometer we all are born with is not, of itself, enough to know that to kill, under any circumstance, is wrong.
  It's a slippery slope which has trapped mankind in revenge ad infinitum, to the point that no one remembers how it started and looks no further than the last insult to justify it's furtherance.

"Happy people have no history" - French Proverb

hush
Senior Member
since 05-27-2001
Posts 1693
Ohio, USA


16 posted 03-09-2002 12:14 PM       View Profile for hush   Email hush   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for hush

I'm not arguing with you, I'm aruing with your argument. It doesn't make sense. I'm also pointing out that your demeanor (granted, that's a pretty hard quality to judge based on text alone) makes you come off like you think you're better than people who disagree with you. You know, I don't agree with capital punishment, or with war, but I have enough respect for others and their opinions that I don't dismiss them by putting them in quotation-marks... you might as well just throw in "so-called" before the word, because it seems that's exactly what you're saying.

Your reply to me is a very good example of your condescending attitude. Whoever said I was vaunting my boyfriend? I was using him as an example against a blanket statement you made earlier in the thread about people who believe in war. If I really was vaunting him, can't I just say you're doing the same by rattling off your extensive list of examples? Are you vaunting Andrea Yates?

I agree with you that we seem to be stuck in a cycle of vengeance... but doesn't debate/argument work the same way? Until people open their minds, get off their high horses, and listen to what others are saying, without condescension or the need to set up "us-against-them" barriers of right and wonrg, we're never going to get anywhere. I'm perfectly willing to listen to what you have to say... but I can't overlook it when you throw out random quotation marks in such an insulting manner regarding people you will never meet.

"Love is a piano
dropped from a four story window
and you were in the wrong place
at the wrong time." -Ani DiFranco

Ron
Administrator
Member Rara Avis
since 05-19-99
Posts 9708
Michigan, US


17 posted 03-09-2002 01:20 PM       View Profile for Ron   Email Ron   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Ron's Home Page   View IP for Ron

quote:
Yet I am confused that the inner barometer we all are born with is not, of itself, enough to know that to kill, under any circumstance, is wrong.


You're making a few unsupported assumptions there, Richard.

I'm not convinced we're all born with an inner barometer. The nature versus nurture debate has raged a long time, with good arguments on both side.

If there is an innate inner barometer, I'm much less than convinced it's universal. If it was, I question whether we'd see so much ethical diversity throughout history and the world.

While I'm certainly willing to agree killing is wrong under some circumstances, and probably willing to agree killing is wrong under most circumstances, I'm much less sure I would concede it's wrong under ANY circumstance.

Finally, I'm not even quite sure what the word "wrong" means in this context (the appropriate meaning might well change my stance in the above paragraph).


Ron
Administrator
Member Rara Avis
since 05-19-99
Posts 9708
Michigan, US


18 posted 03-09-2002 01:38 PM       View Profile for Ron   Email Ron   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Ron's Home Page   View IP for Ron

quote:
Should I have the desire to better myself as a writer, even if I don't have the desire to write at all?

No. And, uh, yes.  

First, my analogy was indeed just that, as I know you knew it was, and it wasn't even a particularly good one. What I was really saying, of course, is that I hope everyone can and desires to learn tolerance. Not out of some altruistic motivation, but because they realize they can never expect tolerance until they're willing to give it.

My "no" to your question relates to what we typically think about when we think about writing. I certainly don't expect people with no interest to want to learn the craft of writing, any more than I would appreciate someone assuming I want to learn how to fix car engines just because I drive one. Learning to write well is a serious commitment, just like learning to play an instrument well. Both, I think, need to be fueled by serious desire.

My "yes" to your question, however, relates to writing as communication. You may have no desire to write the Great American Novel, but society is still based on communication, and much of that is still done with written words. No one lacking the desire needs to learn plot and characterization, but everyone needs to learn basic grammar, spelling, and I would hope, logical critical thinking skills. Not out of some altruistic motivation, but because they realize they can never expect understanding until they're willing - and able - to give it.

RSWells will be notified of replies
 Post A Reply Post New Topic   Go to the Next Oldest/Previous Topic Return to Topic Page Go to the Next Newest Topic 
All times are ET (US) Top
  User Options
>> Discussion >> Philosophy 101 >> In a Dark Place / A Shiver Runs Through Format for Better Printing EMail to a Friend Not Available
Print Send ECard

 

pipTalk Home Page | Main Poetry Forums

How to Join | Member's Area / Help | Private Library | Search | Contact Us | Today's Topics | Login
Discussion | Tech Talk | Archives | Sanctuary



© Passions in Poetry and netpoets.com 1998-2013
All Poetry and Prose is copyrighted by the individual authors