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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Honestly, Amba, after following the last links, I'm loathe to wander the carnival grounds.

Not in the right frame of mind, I guess, and I suspect I'd end up annoyed with too many people (given my track record, on both sides), and to what good end?


I think the struggle is actually between man and his desire to be God- achieved by over-riding human authorities: power. How does one defy the Lord? Punch Him in the Ghost? Human beings are much more satisfying subjects of defeat.

Man will never be God. Because of this refusal to submission admission- the fight goes on. They refuse to get over it.

I'm w/*reader_iam* (whom I think reemed me out once before the very 1st God or Not on the blog there)... for stupidly posting on the wrong post. I didn't- i just stopped on a mj rant to say- whaaa....?


I did? (I'm not saying you're wrong--I just don't recall it. Truly. I could even owe an apology, for all I know.). Can you e-mail the link?



And, Amba, if you don't mind, I just want to clarify to readers that we weren't in disagreement, which was decidly not the context. At least, I don't think so ...


If you have logical reasons to think there is a supernatural, then it's easier to let go of logical reason now and then to experience God. The higher dimensional level of the supernatural means our logic is not able to comprehend it. The book Flatland illustrates this pretty well. (amba, I think you would like Flatland, in case you have not read it yet.)

>The Father roars, “Kill and make war!” while the >son whispers, “Love and be poor.”

I just have to comment on this radical goddess statement. No, the average young male is not a peaceful wimp. When young men join a peace movement their real motivation is resentment of authority, not a desire to dance peacefully with their girlfriends in fields of flowers. The young men of primitive tribes were the warriors, programmed for this role by genetics. Men, in general, are excited by violence, either direct or vicarious. How else can you explain violent video games and movies, and sports like football or boxing?

There are always plenty of young men who prefer the real experience. They value bravery and honor, and the thrill of fighting.

Yes I know, no one has believed this since the 1960s. But to me it's obvious.


reader_iam... I suck at linkage and research and am basically lazy. I THINK the 1st Carnival was on the Glittering Eye? It was about the Pledge of Alligence and slamming God. Maybe it wasn't you. I said some things about the class of Leadership my daughter was taking- which I thought was a waste for taxpaying education, but - she liked the class. What do I know?

I'll go check it out. It's not important, i was just taken a bit aback. It may NOT have been you.


Re: "Religious people already know ... to connect with it."

You know, I've been pondering that, and what's so interesting is that I keep coming back to thinking of my own denomination, Episcopal, which is going through some, shall we say, interesting times, both internally here in the U.S. and also with regard to the worldwide Anglican communion. (And NOT for one reason--the obvious one--only.)

By its very nature and its history, Anglicanism (in this case, I'm subsuming ECUSA within that larger umbrella) carries within itself some of the very dichotomies and tensions one sees in the larger society and world. There is a wide and wild range, from the deeply conservative, even dogmatic, and evangelical to the primarily social-justice oriented and almost verging on unitarian.

This is sometimes true within a single congregation (Ahem).

Thus, to use a trivial example, it's quite possible to have one faction wanting to blast The Da Vinci code and tear it apart, and another trying to set up a study group on it. (Um, I'm not really being hypothetical here.)

The thing is, both sides needs to be able to get through coffee hour etc. without coming to metaphorical blows. Thus, in order to survive, something along the lines of what you propose is pretty much required, if not framed in exactly that way.

As you can imagine, sometimes it works better than others, but limp along we do, more or less in communion.

That Elizabeth I was really something, wasn't she?


I did read Flatland, or part of it, many years ago. And I've read things about how we may be four-dimensional beings passing through three-dimensional space, and how that doesn't begin to exhaust the possible number of dimensions. But the mind boggles.

. . . but the father and son she was talking about were a special case: God and Jesus. And Jesus was one different kind of warrior. "Turn the other cheek" is not exactly the default position for young males. I agree with you.


I wasn't going to wade into this discussion, but this statement in the post and then again in the comments got to me:

The Father roars, “Kill and make war!” while the son whispers, “Love and be poor.” (The Ghost is mum).

I don't mind having a good debate about religion, but this is a ridiculously obvious straw man. If the writer doesn't know it, then she's dumb and/or lazy. If she knows it, then she's dishonest.

The result? General confusion. Whaddya go with – killing or loving?!? And who’s the Ghost, anyway? At this point, “faith” gets invented. Definition of “faith”: “Sit down, shut up, do as you’re told, or god will hurt you.”

Yes, that's Christianity all right. Generally, one argues best when one at least attempts to undersand the subject at hand.

If the best case against Christianity is an intellectually empty and dishonest over-simplification, then my faith is hardly threatened.

Does this puerile ranting really convince people?


The difficulty for me has always been that religion (of whatever variety) always expects you to take something (if not everything) on faith with little or no proof.

Not only that, but the stuff they ask you to believe is so patently ridiculous that if someone came up to you today and tried to convince you of it (without having prior exposure to it), you would likely call someone to heavily medicate them.

Finally, when you look at the history of various religions, including Christianity, you can see the evolution of religion through the centuries, and that many beliefs in each are direct descendents from previously held mythologies.

Therefore, it becomes obvious to me that all religions are merely cultural memes that have developed, evolved, and speciated as society has evolved. The difference now is that our greater knowledge of the world and natural processes have put the lie to many of the assertions of religions, so the strength of their hold on their believers is waning.

Amba, above you said "the atheists are better at logically eviscerating religion than at providing anything coherent and persuasive in its place." The logical fallacy in that argument is that there is a *need* for anything to take the place of religion. Perhaps Religion is best described as the Dodo bird of cultural memes, already well on its way to extinction.

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