Goodenough Gismo

  • Gismo39
    This is the classic children's book, Goodenough Gismo, by Richmond I. Kelsey, published in 1948. Nearly unavailable in libraries and the collector's market, it is posted here with love as an "orphan work" so that it may be seen and appreciated -- and perhaps even republished, as it deserves to be. After you read this book, it won't surprise you to learn that Richmond Irwin Kelsey (1905-1987) was an accomplished artist, or that as Dick Kelsey, he was one of the great Disney art directors, breaking your heart with "Pinocchio," "Dumbo," and "Bambi."



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karen

:0). I think Albert Einstein said something along that line, too.

Sorry about the ~virus~. I've seen what *it* can do. Maybe *it* needs just a bit of the colour purple you all paint around here to lighten up?

realpc

"Religion needs science to keep it away from superstition and keep it close to reality, to protect it from creationism, which at the end of the day is a kind of paganism - it's turning God into a nature god. And science needs religion in order to have a conscience, "

I don't know what he means by creationism, or what he thinks is wrong with paganism or nature gods.

And science doesn't need religion just to have a consciience. Rejecting the supernatural and hanging on to an obsolete materialism blocks scientific progress.

JewishAtheist

Believing that God created the universe in six days is a form of superstitious paganism

And believing that God thinks condoms are evil isn't?

Nick

Wanna know how long ago the Catholic Church was willing to abandon the literal six days of Genesis 1? Try St. Augustine, who wrote "A Literal Interpretation of Genesis" ca. 400 A.D. and said that creation happened in an instant and unfolded over an indeterminate period of time. And even by then, it was pretty obvious to anyone with a whit of sense that you can't take Genesis word for word.

I take it as a sign of just how dominant the evangelical voice has become in American culture that we're surprised by the stance of the Catholics. The fundamentalist inclination to interpret Genesis "literally" is *not* a "conservative" view, and it's not an effort to go back to the "good old days" of the church. It is a *new* movement, and a dangerous one at that.

realpc

The idea that anything can be interpreted literally is nonsensical. Words are words, they are symbols, they cannot be equivalent to reality. The words of our human languages can guide us towards ideas, but words can never BE ideas.

The question of how many days it took to create the universe is not a meaningful question. We are so tangled up in our words, this kind of argument can seem meaningful.

Language is limited, but I can see why people are usually unaware of the limits. The silly arguments are understandable, given that language is the only way we can share ideas. But the realities and true ideas (morphic fields?) are not transmittted by human language.

The deep truths of religion are beyond human discourse. A fundamentalist Christian, or pagan, or Buddhist, may know things with complete certainty, but he can never make you understand if you don't want to understand.

So we fall into traps of worrying how many days the creation of the universe took, or what should be on the list of things God doesn't want us to do.

We have always wanted to have a book of rules and truth, but that is not possible. The bible is like a crystal ball for focusing the mind on God. If that works for someone, great. That would not be my method, but to each his own.

karen

Realpc- it isn't a crystal ball- it's a book of advice, occurances and historical events. A given guideline. Sorta like weight watchers, giving the method and the weighted amounts of spiritual food necessary for good health.

Cheating on diets- bound to happen. It's never been said people don't ignore, cheat on or interpret the Word to get their own way. Unfortunately- cheating on a diet won't get you thin...

Catholicism has always been misrepresented andmisunderstood (woe is me LOL). It's cool to hear it from the horse's mouth and be able to take it for what it is. Or leave it.

It's true, no word can really get you there- that's a route where Faith is necessary. But, some books read do a greater job of actualizing the terrain they describe and it takes a lot less imagination to feel present in it.

Amba comes to mind. :0).

karen

Oh yeah- i should add that's it's the Truth, for some of us.

realpc

Karen,

I really don't think you think the bible is the Truth. It says wives should obey their husbands and slaves should obey their masters. It says the punishment for adultery, and many less serious offenses, is death. Jesus said his followers should leave their families and give away all their possesions. Jesus said to follow every letter of the law of the Old Testament. How many Christians even know what these ancient (and very strange, from our perspective) laws are?

No one today follows the laws of either the Jewish or Christian bibles.

Instead, they debate endlessly on abortion, which is never mentioned anywhere in the bible. And homosexuality, which is isn't really mentioned, depending on how you interpret the words, which have been translated and edited over the centuries.

It's not that words are useless. But they are symbols, not ideas. They can direct our thinking and draw borders around concepts, but this process can never be exact. You can't transmit an idea from your mind into the mind of another person using words.


karen

I read the same thing about our concept of history. We still gotta take it in school- and many folks are history buffs. Is it reality- actuality? Both and neither, if you ask me. None of us were there, or if we were, it was all in different perspective positions. we still do our best to recount and relay.

The Bible is Truth. In concept or verbatium- i really haven't tried to study the 100's of laws in it. Maybe Jesus said to the effect that in the end it didn't matter what one puts in one's mouth among friends- it's the inside of our hearts that matter. Somewhere. Old Testament and New are necessary together- actually, Christians rely on the Old for the New. The Jewish are just fine w/out it :0).

There is such a thing as absolute, to me. Absolute truths and values and things that become laws because they are held to be true in it's natural state, like gravity. You can usually count on it every time.

That's why i have such a hard time w/the Left. They can twist the meanings of things to change the entire definition of the truth it really is. They may not have invented it, but they sure seem to have perfected it. Hey, i know. I live in VT.

realpc

Karen,

I have a hard time with the left also. Yes they twist the meanings of things, but so does the right, and every other group. Language is twisted, we are twisted, because we are limited creatures in time. We are not gods, we just have a tendency to think we are.

Yes there are absolute Truths, but they can't be stated in language. If you don't believe slaves should obey their masters and women should obey their husbands -- and those beliefs have obviously gone out of style -- then you don't follow everything in the bible. And that's just two little examples.

But even though I think both the political left and right are living in fantasy -- especially the more extreme groups on either side -- I have more of a problem with the left. The left is more educated than the right, on average, so they have more faith in themselves and no humility whatsoever. We are all limited and fallible, but at least religious people are aware of their limitations. Secular leftists see themselves as all-knowing gods -- the stupidity of smart people is the most profound, and dangerous, kind of stupidity.

I belong to a small minority because I am both educated and religious. And I think that's only because I had a long break between college and graduate school, and read about a lot of things never mentioned in college, like parapsychology, mysticism, shamanism, etc. By the time I went to graduate school I had already questioned and rejected secular materialism. Otherwise, I would probably still be brainwashed into atheism and socialism.


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