Bush said that an emergency exists and ordered federal aid to supplement the $15 million in federal funds already appropriated for the event.
Boing Boing today has a list of ‘folk theories’ that allow people to be roped into guru cults:
• The folk theory of everything being connected
• The folk theory of ancient wisdom
• The folk theory of holiness
• The folk theory of sex being a loss to the spirit
• The folk theory of harmful technology
• The folk theory that only the heart knows what is true
I’ve determined that God is like a person in a coma. They are aware of the people around them, they hear the people in the room, but there is nothing they can do to affect the environment of the room itself. I think God is like syntax and grammar, the invisible glue that holds things together and makes the difference between marks/sounds and language. God is composed of the sticky bits that hold it all together and thus, God is actually a part of all of us and we are thus a part of God. I think I had a conception of this at 16 but I couldn’t state it quite this clearly. Like talking to the person in the Coma, it makes a difference if you talk to and acknowledge God, but you are invariably disappointed if you expect a response.
Have you ever noticed how whenever you make concrete steps to leave a party, things invariably get more interesting? That’s how I feel about my forthcoming departure from Hawaii.
Of course, the thing with peoples in comas is that they sometimes wake up.
My friend Steve believes that our ultimate goal in life is to provide orgasms for each other. I think that is a pretty great concept, but it needs to include intellectual and spiritual orgasms as well. Kind of gives a whole new meaning to Sunday Service, doesn’t it?
This is too incredible not to blog about…I hope it is true. Apparently some have claimed that it also uttered “Popeye is my homeboy.” and “Felix Saves”.
The Fisher-Price Little Mommy Cuddle ‘n Coo is meant to make realistic baby sounds and occasionally cry out for its “mama”.
But some parents claim that one of its noises sounds just like “Islam is the Light”, and have complained to Mattel, which owns Fisher-Price.
Some shops in the US have removed the doll from shelves after complaints from customers, according to reports. It is available in Britain for £19.99.
A spokesman for Fisher-Price insisted that the doll was not pushing pro-Islamic messages, adding that the sound some parents were hearing was caused by an accidental distortion of the doll’s soundtrack.
“The Little Mommy Cuddle ‘n Coo dolls feature realistic baby sounds including cooing, giggling, and baby babble with no real sentence structure,” a spokesman said.
“The only scripted word the doll says is ‘mama’. There is a sound that may resemble something close to the word ‘night’, ‘right’, or ‘light’.
“Because the original soundtrack is compressed into a file that can be played through an inexpensive toy speaker, actual sounds may be imprecise or distorted.”
Earlier, Mattel released a statement saying that “the power of suggestion” was the reason why parents were mis-hearing the doll.
“It’s not what you would expect out of a sweet little doll,” said Martina Hollermann of Ramsey, Minnesota, who bought the toy for her children. “Everyone was kind of creeped out.”
Today, I went to see Religulous, the new movie by Bill Maher and director Larry Charles (Curb Your Enthusiasm).
I won’t spoil it, I thought it was good and I think everyone should watch it. Everyone. Despite the applause that broke out when the film came to it’s rather abrupt conclusion, I think the film is flawed and not very likely to convert anyone away from religion. For those of us who do not consider ourselves to be Christians, Muslims, Jews, Scientologists, or Mormons though, it was nice to see our lack of faith in ancient stories affirmed.
The flaw in the film, however, is that it attacks some of the more easily attacked aspects of these faiths without addressing why the faiths exist in the first place. And, without looking at the less easily described reasons why humans across all boundaries and seperations, feel the need to have religion in the first place.
As humans, I think it is likely that all of us ask, at some point, the important questions.
Where was I before I was alive?
Where will I go when I die?
Am I my body or is my body just a possession?
Is there a purpose to life? Is there a purpose to my life?
Why is there suffering?
What is consciousness?
And so on. We look for the answers and not surprisingly, we don’t find them easily. Maher seems to be saying that there are no answers, but I don’t think it is that simple. I’ve always felt that science deals with the questions that start with how and that spirituality/religion/philosophy deal with the questions of why. I don’t think it is a good idea to ignore how or why. This is the problem I have with athiesm and humanism in general- it relegates the question of why as something that is unimportant or unanswerable.
I’ve always thought that the history of most religions is ridiculous. By this I mean the stories of flying horses, magic fishes, parting waters, and even angry gods. However, I don’t think it is inconceivable that there is a greater force than us in the universe and that perhaps we are able to gain insight into our existence from it, from time to time. I believe that this is what the great prophets and mystics have tapped into. Also, I think that it is likely that Jesus, Mohammad, Joseph Smith, L. Ron and Noah (among others) came across knowledge that can help answer these questions. However, that being said, I think it is more likely that a divine intelligence would utilize animation and the seemingly random collaboration of cartoonists, writers, and artists to give us insight.
Hence, here I admit my mistake over the past few days in claiming that Felix, Yogi, and Popeye were Gods… they are not, they are, instead, the divine messengers of God. It sounds much more realistic than magical resurrections, virgin births, transport to heaven, war between the devil and god, or any of the other b.s. that we humans seem to be so eager to follow.
The questions you need to ask as you watch this are:
Who does the Duck represent?
Who or what are the Hunter and the Dog?
Whjy is Yogi so willing to put himself in harms way to help a strange little duck?
The Holy Post-Modern Triumvirate of the Three Network Generation.
Yes, this is a new religion. It is in the process of being revealed and explained. We do not acknowledge the ‘ownership’ of our gods.’ Give to Popeye that which is Popeye’s and give to the companies of men, that which is theirs.
With the coming of the information age God has the means to communicate with humans through the revelations of multiple messengers who collaborate through the hand of God to produce divine messages to those who are willing to allow themselves to be spoken too.
God has chosen the image that best suits God within the realm of human collaboration and he has chosen the image of Popeye. It is no coincidence that Popeye should use the same phrase as God. For Popeye is God. His message about the human condition is not to be ignored. “I am that I am” “I yam what I yam” . His generosity towards those who he meets extends even to the forgiveness of those who have wronged him again and again. Yet Popeye is no pacifist claiming that one should turn the other cheek. Popeye usually comes out on top because he turns off his perception of being the victim and instead tunes into achieving his goals in the ideal circumstances. The lessons of Popeye as he battles lust, greed, envy and the other deadly sins can teach us to prevail and not to cave in to circumstances that seem beyond our control.
Wimpy is the equivalent of Bacchus.
Olive is Aphrodite, Goddess of Love.
Brutus/Bluto are the twin temptations of all humans; excess and violence. Swea’Pea is the desire each of us has to follow the path that is set before us. In the innocence of a child, we see that what usually happens when one follows that nudge from the universe is that one arrives at a pleasant revelation or growth point.
Yogi Bear is the God of nature. Nature outside of and within humans. It is Yogi who is the God of the environment and the God of anarchic nature and the human within each of us that still belongs in nature. Yogi must find balance with the ranger and must know when the hunters will come. He treads a fine line between selfish and altruistic. He is the God of food. The Ranger represents authority and order in human affairs. The hunters represent the world as conditioned by the material world of human beings. Yogi’s message is that the human must learn to accept itself as a fundamental part of nature.
Boo Boo does not exist, the insertion of Boo boo into the original Yogi message is an attempt to confuse the message of Yogi. You must look past Boo Boo.
Felix the Cat is the God of the ephemeral. He controls perception, illusion, economics, magic, and spiritual manifestation. It is the magic bag of Felix that lets human beings come into the understanding of how the Gods are communicating. His nemesis are the Professor (or academic hardening of thought patterns), Rock Bottom (the purveyor of imaginary economies and political systems), the Master Cylinder (the proponent of mankind as their own savior through the harnessing of energy and machines rather than looking inward.)
Why does God choose to manifest to humans in many aspects? Humans are incapable of comprehending the totality of God. If we were to comprehend God for just an instant we would disappear from this reality.
In this world of God’s with made up attributes, names, and functions, I propose a new triumvirate of Gods. Under these three would be a host of apostles, saints, and holy figures.
At the top is the High God, Popeye. Popeye tells us that there is no reality other than the reality of ourselves. He points out that even what we see outside of us, is actually inside of us. “I yam what I yam.” Popeye is not and has never been a military man, he is an independent man of the sea. The god of the ocean and of agriculture. His consort, Olive, is the Goddess of love.
In most appearances (except during the World War II era), Popeye is a middle-aged independent sailor (or “sailor man,” as he puts it) with a unique way of speaking, muscular forearms with two (sometimes one) anchor tattoos, thinning red hair, and an ever-present corncob pipe (which he toots like a steamship’s whistle at times). Despite some mistaken characterizations over the years, Popeye is generally depicted as having only one blue eye, his left. In at least one Fleischer cartoon, Bluto refers to Popeye as a “one-eyed runt.” It has never been revealed specifically how Popeye lost his right eye, although he claims it was in “the mos’ arful battle” of his life. Later versions of the character had both eyes, with one of them merely being squinty, or “squinky” as he put it.
Popeye is depicted as having superhuman strength, though the nature of his strength changes depending on which medium he is represented in. Originally, the comic-strip Popeye gained his strength and invulnerability in 1929 by rubbing the head of the rare Whiffle Hen.
Though at times he seems bereft of manners or uneducated, Popeye is often depicated as capable of coming up with solutions to problems that (to the police, or, most importantly, the scientific community) seem insurmountable. Indeed, the only thing more ridiculously inexplicable than his ingenuity, is that the writers’ defiance of common sense is nearly universal. Popeye has, alternatively, displayed Sherlock Holmes-like investigating prowess, determining for instace that his beloved Olive was abducted by estimating the depth of the villains’ footprints in the sand, scientific ingenuity (as his construction, within a few hours, of a “spinach-drive” spaceship, or oversimplified (yet successful) diplomatic argumentation, by presenting to diplomatic conferences his own existence (and superhuman strength) as the only true guarantee of world peace.
Next is the God of the material world, Yogi. It is Yogi that reminds us to take care of our world and all that inhabit it. Yogi fights against the wrong perceptions and unfair practices of the material world while acknowledging that all in the world are equal members of it whether hobos or animals. Yogi is the God of the Environment, Wealth, and Health.
During the course of the Yogi’s Gang series, Yogi and his friends encounter a variety of villains such as Captain Swashbuckle Swipe, Smokestack Smog, Lotta Litter, the Envy Brothers, Mr. Hothead, Dr. Bigot (and his henchmen Professor Haggling and Professor Bickering), the Gossipy Witch of the West, J. Wantum Vandal, the Sheik of Selfishness, Commadore Phineas P. Fibber, I.M. Sloppy, Peter D. Cheater, Mr. Waste, Hilarious P. Prankster, and the Greedy Genie, who act as their friends, hosts and/or guests, but embody some of the most common human faults and vices.
15 original episodes were produced for broadcast on ABC, with the hour-long Yogi’s Ark Lark thrown in as a split-in-half 2-parter.
Finally, there is the God of the Mystic, Felix. Felix is the God of the unseen. In this triumvirate, it is Felix that is the God of getting what you need provided for you. With his magic bag of tricks, Felix provides the example of being able to refashion the universe into whatever you need at any given time. Felix is the God of science and mysticism.
Felix’s origins remain disputed. Australian cartoonist/film entrepreneur Pat Sullivan, owner of the Felix character, claimed during his lifetime to be its creator as well. American animator Otto Messmer, Sullivan’s lead animator, has more commonly been assigned credit in recent decades. Some historians argue that Messmer ghosted for Sullivan. What is certain is that Felix emerged from Sullivan’s studio, and cartoons featuring the character enjoyed unprecedented success and popularity in the 1920s.
References to alcoholism and Prohibition were also commonplace in many of the Felix shorts, particularly Felix Finds Out (1924), Whys and Other Whys (1927), Felix Woos Whoopee (1930) to name a few. In Felix Dopes It Out (1924), Felix tries to help his hobo friend who is plagued with a red nose. By the end of the short, the cat finds the cure for the condition: “Keep drinking, and it’ll turn blue.”
Felix has been said to represent a child’s sense of wonder, creating the fantastic when it is not there, and taking it in stride when it is. His famous pace—hands behind his back, head down, deep in thought—became a trademark that has been analyzed by critics around the world.Felix’s expressive tail, which could be a shovel one moment, an exclamation mark or pencil the next, serves to emphasize that anything can happen in his world. Aldous Huxley wrote that the Felix shorts proved that “What the cinema can do better than literature or the spoken drama is to be fantastic.”
The plots revolve around the unsuccessful attempts of the antagonists to steal Felix’s Magic Bag, though in an unusual twist, these antagonists are occasionally depicted as Felix’s friends as well.