Christopher Hitchens: 'I wish I'd done more of everything'
The controversial author was a brilliant but challenging conversationalist, as Telegraph writer Mick Brown discovered earlier this year.
When I interviewed Christopher Hitchens at his home in Washington in February, the discussion – sadly, inevitably – turned to the subject of mortality. He and a friend, he said, contemplating their demise, had mused that there would come a day when the newspapers would come out and they wouldn’t be there to read them. “And on that day, I’ve realised recently,” he went on, “I’ll probably be in the newspapers, or quite a lot of them. And etiquette being what it is, generally speaking, rather nice things being said about me.” He shrugged. “Just typical that will be the edition I miss.”
As a journalist, polemicist, author and indefatigable man of letters, Hitchens devoured the written word as much as he exulted in it, and he would be enjoying the obituaries and tributes in today’s newspapers, dwelling on his fiercely brilliant intellect, the grace and elegance of his language, his combative nature and his raffish charm. Hitchens took a characteristically robust approach to eulogy and remembrance. He could be generous in his praise – he once lionised Professor Freddy Ayer as “a tireless and justly celebrated fornicator”; but brutal in his condemnation: within hours of the televangelist Jerry Falwell’s passing, Hitchens was fixing him as an “ugly little charlatan”, adding that “if you give Falwell an enema, you could bury him in a matchbox”.
In a career spanning more than 40 years, Hitchens had a view on pretty much every subject under the sun, from the war in Iraq to the pleasures of oral sex. And it is odd to reflect that he should have achieved his greatest recognition and notoriety in the last years of his life for his contempt for religious belief and, more melancholically, for the courageous manner in which he faced up to his illness and impending death. Until the publication in 2007 of his book God Is Not Great: How Religion Poisons Everything, Hitchens had been, in the words of a late friend, the author Susan Sontag, “a sovereign figure in the small world of those who tilled the field of ideas” – but largely unknown outside it.
God Is Not Great changed all, making him a champion of the New Atheism, alongside such celebrated non-believers as Richard Dawkins and Sam Harris, the American neuroscientist. His growing public status as God’s fiercest critic would lend a particular poignancy to his struggle with the cancer of the oesophagus that would take his life.
When I met Hitchens, he was in the midst of the genome sequencing treatment which, it was hoped, would cure his cancer. The plan had been to film a conversation to be shown at the Hay Festival, where he was a perennial favourite, but which he was too ill to attend. He greeted me at the door of his apartment with profuse apologies. He felt terrible, he said, and not up to being interviewed on camera. I took that as my cue to leave, but he insisted that I stay.
Over the next five hours – and still more the following day – fortified by cups of tea and glasses of whiskey, he held forth on everything, from politics to literature, to Bob Dylan and “the Bhagwan” Rajneesh. He was gossipy, indiscreet and scabrously funny about his enemies (step forward Henry Kissinger and Bill Clinton). It was one of the most entertaining – and challenging – conversations I have ever had the privilege to enjoy. Even on the doorstep of death, he was a colossal force for life. I have not met anybody with such a well-furnished mind – nor such a well-stocked drinks cabinet: he had a prodigious appetite for alcohol, and a happy facility for being able to function under the influence, if not always in the aftermath. Large sections of his memoir Hitch-22 describe him staggering from one hangover to the next.
He also, famously, enjoyed a fight. He was passionate about intellectual freedom and contemptuous of any orthodoxy or ''ism’’. He was often described as a contrarian – a description he disowned; he was disputatious, but never, it seemed, for the sake of it. His opinions were always drawn from a deep well of conviction – although you sensed that the more people scandalised by those opinions, the greater the pleasure he took in holding them. He was an equal opportunity provocateur.
He was also enormously charming and likeable. It seems striking that many of his adversaries in his public debates on religion should have ended up as his friends. Among them was Francis Collins, an evangelical Christian, and the former director of the National Human Genome Research Institute, which pioneered the treatment Hitchens was receiving. (I wasn’t sure, I said to Hitchens, whether that constituted irony. “Take your time…,” he replied equably.)
Any suggestion that his illness might have occasioned second thoughts about the existence of God – either as a dispenser of divine justice or of infinite mercy – was met with short shrift. If such a thing were to happen, he said, it would be because his illness had rendered him demented. He seemed discomfited by the fact that his illness had become a battleground on which the forces of belief and non-belief had come to wage war: well-meaning Christians praying for him, and doubters who had come to see him as some kind of champion of non-belief in extremis. “That makes me a bit alarmed,” he confessed, “to be the repository of other people’s hope.”
His attitude to people praying for him could be described as a mixture of polite gratitude and a determined refusal to let it sway his opinions. But he had no patience for bedside evangelists. “They’re allowed to roam the wards,” he said, his voice rising in indignation. “They tried it on me.” He had been thinking that he, Dawkins and Harris might set up a secular equivalent of hospital visitors. “We’d go round – 'Hope you don’t mind, you said you were Catholic? Only three weeks to live? Well, listen, you don’t have to live them as a mental slave, you know; you could have three weeks of freedom from fear of the priest. Don’t be a mug all your life…’. I don’t think it would be considered in very good taste.”
I said that I didn’t think it would be a kindness, either.
“I think it would,” he replied. “Absolutely.”
He could marshal every rational argument against religious belief and deliver it with a lethal mixture of irony and venom, but what he lacked in this regard at least was empathy. When it came to any discussion about the consolations or the empowering strengths of belief, as Hitchens admitted, he simply didn’t ''get it’’.
When I asked whether he felt he’d been a good person, he gave a dismissive shrug: “Not particularly.” For that definition to apply, he said, the world expects a good deal of selflessness. “And while no one scores very high on that, I score lower than most.” He had seen his adult life partly as a sustained act of compensation or redress for the boredom and limitations of his stiflingly conventional, middle-class childhood.
So what, I asked, did he wish he’d done more of?
He laughed. “Everything…”
At the end of our second meeting, I felt the urge to tell him that such was his fighting spirit I was sure that he would win this most critical of battles.
“It’s funny you say so,” he said. “I hope you’re a person of hidden intuition. I actually don’t feel that. I can’t tell you why. It’s almost as hard for me to imagine being around in the next 10 years as not being, strangely enough. But it’s not in my hands, fortunately.”
A few weeks later I sent an email, saying what a privilege it had been to spend time with him, and expressing my hope that things were looking up.
“No need to say anything,” he wrote back. “Have had a vile time since, but still hope for a re-match.” I feel immensely sad that it’s not to be.
THE WORLD ACCORDING TO 'THE HITCH'
On why women aren’t funny
Be your gender what it may, you will certainly have heard the following from a female friend who is enumerating the charms of a new (male) squeeze: “He’s really quite cute, and he’s kind to my friends, and he knows all kinds of stuff, and he’s so funny…” However, there is something that you absolutely never hear from a male friend who is hymning his latest (female) love interest: “She’s a real honey, has a life of her own… (interlude for attributes that are none of your business)… and, man, does she ever make ’em laugh.”
Now, why is this? Why are men, taken as a whole, funnier than women? Well, for one thing, they had damn well better be. The chief task in life that a man has to perform is that of impressing the opposite sex, and Mother Nature (as we laughingly call her) is not so kind to men. In fact, she equips many fellows with very little armament for the struggle. An average man has just one outside chance. He had better be able to make the lady laugh.
Making them laugh has been one of the crucial preoccupations of my life. If you can stimulate her to laughter – I am talking about that out-loud, head-back, mouth-open-to-expose-the-full-horseshoe-of-lovely-teeth, involuntary, full and deep-throated mirth; the kind that is accompanied by a shocked surprise and a slight (no, make that a loud) peal of delight – well, then, you have at least caused her to loosen up and to change her expression. I shall not elaborate further.
On wine waiters
There are two main ways in which a restaurant can inflict bad service on a customer. The first is to keep you hanging about. (“Why are they called waiters?” inquired my son when he was about five. “It’s we who are doing all the waiting.”)
The second way is to be too intrusive, with overlong recitations of the “specials” and too many over-solicitous inquiries. A cartoon in The New Yorker once showed a couple getting ready for bed, with the husband taking a call and keeping his hand over the receiver. “It’s the maître d’ from the place we had dinner. He wants to know if everything is still all right.”
The vile practice of butting in and pouring wine without being asked is the very height of the second kind of bad manners. Not only is it a breathtaking act of rudeness, but it conveys a none-too-subtle message: hurry up and order another bottle.
On the burka
The French legislators who seek to repudiate the wearing of the veil or the burka – whether the garment covers “only” the face or the entire female body – are often described as seeking to impose a “ban”. To the contrary, they are attempting to lift a ban: a ban on the right of women to choose their own dress, a ban on the right of women to disagree with male and clerical authority, and a ban on the right of all citizens to look one another in the face. The proposed law is in the best traditions of the French republic, which declares all citizens equal before the law and – no less important – equal in the face of one another.
On the door of my bank in Washington, DC is a printed notice politely requesting me to remove any form of facial concealment before I enter the premises. The notice doesn’t bore me or weary me by explaining its reasoning. A person barging through those doors with any sort of mask would incur the right and proper presumption of guilt.
This presumption should operate in the rest of society. I would indignantly refuse to have any dealings with a nurse or doctor or teacher who hid his or her face, let alone a tax inspector or customs official.
The particular demand to consider the veil and the burka as an exemption applies only to women. And it also applies only to religious practice (and, unless we foolishly pretend otherwise, only to one religious practice). This at once tells you all you need to know. Society is being asked to abandon an immemorial tradition of equality and openness in order to gratify one faith, one faith that has a very questionable record in respect of females.
On the Bible
Until the early middle years of the 16th century, when King Henry VIII began to quarrel with Rome about the dialectics of divorce and decapitation, a short and swift route to torture and death was the attempt to print the Bible in English. It’s a long and stirring story, and its crux is the head-to-head battle between Sir Thomas More and William Tyndale (whose name in early life, I am proud to say, was William Hychyns).
For generations, [the Bible] provided a common stock of references and allusions, rivalled only by Shakespeare. A culture that does not possess this common store of image and allegory will be a perilously thin one. To seek restlessly to update it or make it “relevant” is to miss the point, like yearning for a hip-hop Shakespeare. “Man is born unto trouble as the sparks fly upward,” says the Book of Job. Want to try to improve on that for Twitter?
At my father’s funeral I chose to read an injunction from St Paul’s Epistle to the Philippians: “Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things.” As much philosophical as spiritual, with its conditional and speculative “ifs”, and its closing advice – always italicised in my mind since first I heard it – to think and reflect on such matters: this passage was the labour of men who had wrought deeply with ideas and concepts.
On the last Harry Potter book
For some time now the novels have been attempting a kind of secular dramatisation of the battle between good and evil. The Ministry of Magic (one of Rowling’s better inventions) has been seeking to impose a version of the Nuremberg Laws on England, classifying its subjects according to blood and maintaining its own Gestapo as well as its own Azkaban gulag.
But over time and over many, many pages, this scenario fails to chill. The prejudice against bank-monopoly gobwwlins is modelled more or less on anti-Semitism, and the foul treatment of elves is meant to put us in mind of slavery, but the overall effect of this is somewhat thin and derivative, and subject to diminishing returns.
Show of hands.ReplyDelete
Who has had a Barium Enema?
(Oh, the pain!)
I'm going of the rails a little.ReplyDelete
Been at work since midnight with only a few hours of sleep before coming in to work a twelve hour shift.
Quite alright, D-man, You're well within the bounds of propriety.ReplyDelete
…and the rules of the bar. We are open 24-7 flaunting all the liquor laws… a smoking bar proudly over-lit with incandescent 100 watt bulbs…often with conversations at a lesser wattage.ReplyDelete
Rather Hitchensesque Deuce.
…often with conversations at a lesser wattage.ReplyDelete
My kind of bar :)
But, inordinately high volume.ReplyDelete
Hitch's problem was he longed for a kinder, gentler G-d and didn't like the inhuman son bitch we got.ReplyDelete
And why did he always hang around public places so much? Always sucking up to and sucking off of attention.ReplyDelete
Hadn't he ever heard, hadn't he ever read about life
.....exempt from public haunt
tongues in trees, books in the running brooks,
Sermons in stones, and good in everything?
Anonobob: Anonymous said...ReplyDelete
Hitch's problem was he longed for a kinder, gentler G-d and didn't like the inhuman son bitch we got.
They say you have Mormon pretensions. I believe you will find a good home there.
Fools' names, like fools' faces, are often found in public places.ReplyDelete
They have a ripping Tabernacle Choir, Miss T, and when my time comes to be a G-d, I'll be a kinder, gentler one.ReplyDelete
I was listening to the Choir singing hallelujah last night for being allowed to experience another Christmas.ReplyDelete
We got one tough, strick daddy-o.
Torment time at the Mall.....ReplyDelete
"they are attempting to lift a ban: a ban on the right of women to choose their own dress,"
Banning women from wearing their choice of dress lifts a ban on their choice of dress??? Riiight, now that makes sense.
Muslim women were told recently they are not to handle cucumbers or bananas too long...it might give them sexual thoughts.ReplyDelete
They can only handle serrano peppers, which are closer in size to Arab doo dads.
damn, if I had it to do over I'd get me one of them Arab wimmin.ReplyDelete
Seems like it don't take much to get'em goin'.
Send'er out to pick some of them squash every day.ReplyDelete
Hitchens was a fiercely brilliant intellectual. If you could ask him he would tell you so.ReplyDelete
For a devotee of Mr Trotsky he was an entertaining sort.ReplyDelete
Or was that sot?
Anonobob: They have a ripping Tabernacle Choir, Miss T, and when my time comes to be a G-d, I'll be a kinder, gentler one.ReplyDelete
Just say nope won't be a dope, put your hope in the Pope.
Why do you need an intermediary, Ms T, to talk to God?ReplyDelete
Better to buy direct, there is no need for a middleman.
Hey, get off your asses, theologians, the Spud Bowl is on.ReplyDelete
To the tvs!!!!
The term of art is The Famous Potato Bowl.ReplyDelete
I suppose I'm part of the 10% that really doesn't give a shit what type of bulb gets plugged into the socket. : )ReplyDelete
I also never had an enema. But then again who really cares about that.
Party rock is in the house tonight
Everybody just have a good time
And we gonna make you lose your mind
Everybody just have a good time
Isn't anyone here upset about a provision in the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) that empowers the President to detain anyone who “substantially supported” groups he determines are “associated forces” of terrorists.ReplyDelete
The provision at issue, sec. 1021.
In this day and age, there is just no excuse to be in need of an enema.ReplyDelete
Bob, if you'd care to post the whole bill we'll have a look.ReplyDelete
But, I warn you, it won't be nothing like that trashbin, The American Thinker, is leading you to believe.
Kunst og CultureReplyDelete
You're in, all. And it's all been downhill since then.....
Try This RufReplyDelete
I don't have any idea what it says, just didn't like the sound of it.
Needed your opinion.
Deepen Your Understanding of St. Nick HereReplyDelete
Could he bilocate? (he was at both Malls here today) Was he compassionate to women? Was he fat? Did he look good in red?
See his bones, too.ReplyDelete
Bob, I'd have to see the whole bill. I remember the uproar over the Patriot Act. Everyone just ignored the part about it had to go in front of a Terrorism Judge, the burden of proof, and whatnot.ReplyDelete
Look, the Constitution is Not a Suicide Pact. The President has Broad, and Far-reaching (albeit, in many cases, temporary) powers (including, if it comes right down to it, the power to bring finalis interruptis to the life of good ol' Bob, or Rufus.) That's just the way it is.
If such a law were to be used in any questionable way, you can be sure there will be high-priced lawyers lining up for miles to take the case, Pro-Bono, all the way to the Supremes.
This story has been on all the nutjob sites the last couple of day, but not on any sources in which I have the slightest degree of trust.
When someone credible says it's a problem, I'll take a look. But, I wouldn't scratch my ass on the word of the Stinker.
As an adult some years ago my three friends and I went to take a picture with SantaReplyDelete
He felt up my ass. True story. After the picture was take I leaned over and told him to go fuck himself.
The picture still hangs on my fridge.
Well, the Bill passed the Republican dominated House of Representatives, so we have another proof of the resiliency of our One Party system.ReplyDelete
The Federal Socialists continue the march against the principles embodied in the Constitution.
If you do not "substantially support" terrorist organizations, whats the worry?
Wonder if cigarette smugglers tripping from the Virgina to New York qualify?
Feds burned by cigarette smuggling
How about folks that buy cocaine sourced from FARC dominated areas of Colombia?
So, went and sat on some fat, jolly, funny-dressing man's lap, and got mad when he copped a feel?ReplyDelete
Get out much? :)
You can look but you can't touch.ReplyDelete
I have rules.
He "repositioned" the load, and you still have his picture on your fridge. Sounds like you kinda liked him. :)ReplyDelete
Supporting terrorism by stealing Federal revenue?
... the US army has charged Bradley Manning with "aiding the enemy,"ReplyDelete
Now, they won't have to continue the Article 32 hearing and go to trial, if the President were to decide he's guilty, beforehand??
It's a reminder of all the dirty old men that are out there.ReplyDelete
She liked it, not him, Rufus.ReplyDelete
Wasn't nuthin personal.
You didn't want to talk to Santa about the first thing that popped up?ReplyDelete
Never said it was easy. :)ReplyDelete
Another time and place (like WWII, under FDR) and he'd be dead by now.
When you go twisting unca's tail, you need to consider who you're messing with.
...just half the human race.ReplyDelete
You have to know that Newt would utilize the power of the Executive, to its utmost.ReplyDelete
Republican presidential candidate Newt Gingrich came out swinging Saturday against the nation's legal system, pledging if elected to defy Supreme Court rulings with which he disagrees and declaring that a 200-year-old principle of American government, judicial review to ensure that the political branches obey the Constitution, had been "grossly overstated."
Courts "are forcing us into a constitutional crisis because of their arrogant overreach,"
I wasn't the one sitting on his lap.ReplyDelete
While the folks that stole billions of USD, will get off with out criminal prosecutionReplyDelete
"If the U.S. attorney's office was going to be bringing charges, they would have brought it simultaneously with the civil case,"
said Christopher Morvillo, a former federal prosecutor now in private practice in Manhattan.
Robert Mintz, a white-collar defense lawyer, says he doubts any top Wall Street executives will face criminal charges for actions that hastened the financial crisis, given how much time has passed.
When Mini mailed NZ guy a bag of tobacco and the paraphernalia to make his own cigarettes it was returned for an unpaid fee of 700.00.ReplyDelete
I've never considered a life of crime, BUT, if I did, I think I'd be a "smuggler."ReplyDelete
A 60 ft sailboat. The Southern Cross. Jimmy Buffet (or, whatever the S. Hemisphere equiv thereof, is,) and a load of cigarette rolling tools, and PAPERS!!!!!!!!!!! YEEHAH!
Here you go, rufus ...ReplyDelete
The Southern Cross, on the Buffett line
Been around the whirled, lookin' for that foreign girl ....
While 40 is astern, for both of us, aye.ReplyDelete
Mother mother ocean, I have heard you call ...
The cannon don't thunder, there's nothing to plunder ...ReplyDelete
Made enough money to buy Miami
Pissed it away so fast ...
Never meant to last ...
Thanks guys, I love Buffet.ReplyDelete
Isn't it interesting that neither the WSJ, Bloomberg, CNBC, or any other mainstream business outlets have mentioned Warren Buffet's buying of Several Very Large Wind Farms, and Solar Farms?ReplyDelete
Could it be they don't want to hear his reason?
The answer of course is, They absolutely do not want him to talk about why he's purchasing these assets.
The World's foremost investor talking about the coming oil/diesel shortage would definitely provoke a conversation the "business" community doesn't want enjoined at this time.
Bad for business, dontcha know.
Do you have any idea how much ass Santa has an opportunity to fondle in a single afternoon?ReplyDelete
You should be proud he chose yours.
Any Santa worth his suit deals only with USDA Prime.ReplyDelete
Cutters and Canners need not apply.
Santa found her suitable.ReplyDelete
And, of course, of course, wanted her unsuited.ReplyDelete
Continuing our studies of the "Guernica"ReplyDelete
>For by the middle of the nineteenth century, three centuries after Galileo, Quixote, and Shakespeare's Hamlet ('to be or not to be...') , not only had the notions of life become reduced to mechanistic formulas, but even those of the mind and will were on the point of being so interpreted. In Ortega's words, once again, "The natural sciences based on determinism conquered the field of biology during the first decades of the nineteenth century. Darwin believed he had succeeded in imprisoning life --our last hope -- within physical necessity. Life is reduced to mere matter, physiology to mechanics. The human organism, which seemed an independent unit, capable of acting by itself, is placed in its physical environment like a figure in a tapestry. It is no longer the organism that moves but the environment that is moving through it. Our actions are no more than reactions. There is no freedom, no originality. To live is to adapt oneself; to adapt oneself is to allow the material environment to penetrate into us, to drive us out of ourselves. Adaptation is submission and renunciation. Darwin sweeps heroes off the face of the earth."<
(this is getting pretty grim - bob)
>And so it is that, in this dismal scene of mechanized cities of "adjusted" automatons, the age arrives, as Ortega states, of the 'roman experimental' ( the experimental book) of Zola and the rest.
"The subject matter is still man, but since man is no longer the agent of his acts but is moved by the environment in which he lives, the novel will look to the representation of the environment. The environment is the only protagonist. People speak of evoking an 'atmosphere'. Art submits to one rule: verisimilitude....: the beautiful is what is probable and the true lies only in physics. The aim of the novel is physiology."
>With the conditioned reflex experiments on dogs of the Russian physiologist Ivan Pavlov (1848-1936) and the application of his methods to the study and control of human thinking and behavior, psychology itself became a department of mechanics. The last dark cavern of retreat of Schopenhauer's "intelligible character" of the individual was about to become wholly illuminated by a laboratory lamp, and the old Germanic sense of destiny as WYRD, an irreversible process of becoming from withing, reduced to an electrician's diagram of afferent and efferent nerves; so that what romantics still were attributing to some vague force, felt to be divine, within, was actually to be analyzed as a property of matter, no less and no more mysterious or divine than what goes on within the carburetor and cylinders of one's own car.
(* This is getting really really bad, a city person is just a city, a country person is just the barn* bob)
In the words of an American master of this ultimate field of nineteenth century science:
"There are common factors running through all forms of human acts. In each adjustment there is always both a response or act and a stimulus or situation which calls out that response. Without going too far beyond our facts, it seems possible to say that the stimulus is always provided by the environment, external to the body, or by the movements of man's own muscles and the secretions of his glands; finally, that the responses always follow relatively immediately upon the presentation of the stimulus. These are really assumptions, but they seem to be basal ones for psychology.....If we provisionally accept them we may say that the goal of psychological study is the ascertaining of such data and laws that, given the stimulus, psychology can predict what the response will be; or, on the other hand, given the response, it can specify the nature of the effective stimulus."
Little wonder then, if in Picasso's apocalyptic "Guernica" the fallen broken hero is revealed as a hollow statue and his pierced Rozinante a strange thing of papier-mache. The dead child of the pieta at the left is a doll, and the entire canvas, for all its great size (11 feet 6 inches by 28 feet 8 inches) suggests a puppet stage; the only centers of possible life being the heads and mouths, with heir flashing tongues, of the bull (good old bull - bob) , the mother, and the screaming horse, plus the tails of the two beasts, the mother's hair, and the modest flower at the fallen hero's right hand. The other mouths are without tongue. Even the flames are unreal of the ecstatic -falling or rising?- woman at the right. The figures are two-dimensional cut-outs, without depth, as we all are now supposed to be in this self-moving machine world: mere masks of nothing beyond.ReplyDelete
This seems to many to be an exclusively modern way of conceiving of the universe and mankind. However, in the long perspective that has opened to our view by the scholarship of comparative world mythology, it must be recognized that it actually was anticipated, together with its moral implications, in the absolutely impersonal, mathematical space-time cosmology and associated social order of those priestly watchers of the skies of the old Sumerian temple-cities (fourth millenneum B.C.), from whose heaven-oriented gaze and related cerebrations the world has received all the basic elements of archaic high civilization: calendric astronomy, mathematics, writing, and monumental symbolic architecture; the idea of a moral order of the universe, made known by way of the features of the night sky, with the waning and waxing moon its focal sign (the rhythmically dying and reappearing lunar bull, whose light is for three nights dark), and, subordinate to this, the moral order and symbolic rites of the hieratic priestly state, with its symbolic King and Court enacting, as well as enforcing, here on earth the order of death in life and life in death made known aloft. We have discussed all this at length in the earlierr volumes of this series....there can now be nothing new to us about it, or surprising.ReplyDelete
However, what I do find surprising, and cannot help pausing a moment to remark, is the fact that in the tortured figures of Picasso's masterpiece (and surely he knew well what he was doing--as will appear on a later page) what we are contemplating is a constellation of perfectly traditional mythological symbols, arranged in such a way as to bear to us in their silent speech (whether intended or not by the artist) a message still in perfect concord with the spirit and lore of the old Sumerian lunar bull: "The One," as we read in the Indian Shatapathe Brahmana, "who is the Death on whom our life depends.....He is one as he is there, but many as he is in his children here."<
jeez, I read Moonbeam is asking the people of Californicated to raise their own taxes via some ballot proposal.ReplyDelete
How you think that will turn out?
It is true a lot of the productive have already left, so maybe it will pass.ReplyDelete