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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Comments

Richard Lawrence Cohen

Yes, Stephen Mitchell is Byron Katie's husband. His Tao Te Ching is from 1988 and they met in approximately 2000, so his use of "she" isn't connected to her, although it's apppropriate. In Katie's new book, A Thousand Names for Joy, which as she, with characteristic humor, admits was largely composed by Stephen based on transcripts of talks with her, she goes through his Tao Te Ching chapter by chapter and comments on each. Her comments don't always seem like direct responses to the Tao Te Ching chapter but they're always in the spirit of the Tao. In her commentary on Chapter 63, which is where your quote comes from, she narrates the extraordinary tale of her 1986 enlightenment: how it led her to fall in love with herself and, through herself, everything and everyone else. She describes how she no longer sensed any separaton between herself and anything else -- couldn't even identify as herself anymore. "It was like God giving itself life through the body of the woman." And then, looking in the mirror, "I remember tears of gratitude pouring down the cheeks as *it* looked at its own reflection.… I felt that if my joy were told, it would blow the roof off…the whole planet. I still feel that way."

I have read her, talked to her, and listened to her, and done the same with Stephen, and I sense nothing but authenticity in this.

amba (Annie Gottlieb)

It's hard not to wonder unenlightenedly what it's like to be married to someone enlightened.

Richard Lawrence Cohen

Everyone wonders about that. My impression is that it's just great. In response to an email question of mine about what she's really like, he replied that "what you see is what you get." Also it's very obvious that they love each other greatly.

Charlie (Colorado)

Rich is really going to think Steven Mitchell is my bete noir, but now that typepad has straightened out, here's what I tried to say the other day:

I agree --- but then I don't like Mitchell's translations in German either. They all seem to get sort of wussified --- the German imperative becomes a statement in the second person, that kind of thing.

You're absolutely right about Chinese: no gender (well, the third-person pronoun has different written forms for gender, but only in modern Chinese). I don't have it at hand (I'm at the office, and they think I'm weird enough as it is) but that bit, directly translated, would read more like

without action
work no effort
take small large
take few many ...

Sage not grasp big
thus Sage big ....

If you're really feeling like getting into it, I like Star's definitive daodejing, and recently I've been studying David Li's "business school" translation. Both of them really look at it character by character.

amba (Annie Gottlieb)

Ooh, thank you for those links!!!

Richard Lawrence Cohen

Charlie: Katie would say, "I love it that Stephen is your bete noir."

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