Friday, June 08, 2007

Moraines, Drumlins, and Eskers: Thou Art the Murderer of God!

Jeremiah 36 - Baruch Writes Jeremiah's Prophecies, Dore

The problem is not religion but religious orthodoxy and the form it takes in human institutions. Throughout history, most moral thinkers - from Socrates to Christ to Francis of Assisi - eschewed the written word. Once moral teachings are written down they become, in the wrong hands, codified and used to enforce conformity, subservience and repression. Writing, as George Steiner has recognised, freezes speech. The moment the writers of the gospels recorded Jesus's teachings, they began to kill their message. There is no room for prophets within religious institutions - indeed within any human institution. Tribal societies persecute prophets; open societies tolerate them at their fringes. Today, our prophets are usually found not within the church but among artists, poets and writers who follow, as Socrates or Jesus did, their inner authority, an authentic religious impulse.

- From New Statesman: False Gods by Chris Hedges

[image source]

Glaciers erode the rock underneath them. A glacier can "carve" a valley, wearing away rocks and soil through abrasion and plucking up and moving large pieces of rock and debris. The glacier pushes this earth and rock forward as it advances, almost like a conveyor belt, and dumps it to the side along the way or at the end of the glacier (deposition). Depositional features include moraines, drumlins, and eskers.

When, however, the path again curved round a rock, all at once the landscape changed, and Zarathustra entered into a realm of death. Here bristled aloft black and red cliffs, without any grass, tree, or bird's voice. For it was a valley which all animals avoided, even the beasts of prey, except that a species of ugly, thick, green serpent came here to die when they became old. Therefore the shepherds called this valley: "Serpent-death."

Zarathustra, however, became absorbed in dark recollections, for it seemed to him as if he had once before stood in this valley. And much heaviness settled on his mind, so that he walked slowly and always more slowly, and at last stood still. Then, however, when he opened his eyes, he saw something sitting by the wayside shaped like a man, and hardly like a man, something nondescript. And all at once there came over Zarathustra a great shame, because he had gazed on such a thing. Blushing up to the very roots of his white hair, he turned aside his glance, and raised his foot that he might leave this ill-starred place. Then, however, became the dead wilderness vocal: for from the ground a noise welled up, gurgling and rattling, as water gurgleth and rattleth at night through stopped-up water- pipes; and at last it turned into human voice and human speech:--it sounded thus:

"Zarathustra! Zarathustra! Read my riddle! Say, say! WHAT IS THE REVENGE ON THE WITNESS?

I entice thee back; here is smooth ice! See to it, see to it, that thy pride do not here break its legs!

Thou thinkest thyself wise, thou proud Zarathustra! Read then the riddle, thou hard nut-cracker,--the riddle that I am! Say then: who am I!"

--When however Zarathustra had heard these words,--what think ye then took place in his soul? PITY OVERCAME HIM; and he sank down all at once, like an oak that hath long withstood many tree-fellers,--heavily, suddenly, to the terror even of those who meant to fell it. But immediately he got up again from the ground, and his countenance became stern.

"I know thee well," said he, with a brazen voice, "THOU ART THE MURDERER OF GOD! Let me go."

- Thus Spoke Zarathustra, Chapter LXVII, The Ugliest Man , Frederich Nietzsche

Amazon Link: Thus Spoke Zarathustra by Frederich Nietzsche

[Hedges/Steiner via Mombacho]


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