This will be my last contribution to Ashtar Command. I’ve decided that the place is not really for someone like me, someone more at home with the dark and the dangerous than the light and rosy! You see, I’m an earth-bound spirit. I thirst for power; personal power, sexual power, intellectual power, all sorts of ways in which I can express myself. I do not want to be part of the rapture or the ascension. Quite frankly I would rather be on Hell with Lucifer than in Heaven with… Continue
Added by Ana the Borg on April 29, 2009 at 1:41am —
I love serendipity, the process whereby one discovers something by chance while looking for something else. I also enjoy mundane incidents leading to darker things, to mystery and to tragedy.
Consider lighthouses, rather boring and functional now but once a fertile source for the gothic imagination. Anyway, I came across a reference to the complete disappearance of three lighthouse keepers from the remote Flannan Islands off the west coast… Continue
Added by Ana the Borg on April 26, 2009 at 6:52am —
Oh, yes, of course Atlantis exists; you will find it to the north of Utopia and to the east of Erewhon! Yes, it exists; it existed in the imagination of Plato, just as the latter two places existed in the imagination of Sir Thomas Moore and Samuel Butler.
There is nothing, no mention of Atlantis whatsoever, in the literary or historical record prior to the composition of Plato’s dialogues Timaeus
and the unfinished Critias
. Quite simply it is Plato’s Utopia, set up as a… Continue
Added by Ana the Borg on April 25, 2009 at 10:45am —
The whole problem with Utilitarianism as a system of values is that it is deeply rooted in the mindset of the English middle classes during the high noon of the Industrial Revolution. It has, as Karl Marx rightly observed in Das Kapital
, no real historical dynamism, that it cannot transcend time and place, and it cannot account for changing values and needs. The perfect Benthamite might very well be said to be the figure of Thomas Gradgrind in… Continue
Added by Ana the Borg on April 25, 2009 at 10:36am —
Here are some of the best;
1. Although the most acute judges of the witches and even the witches themselves, were convinced of the guilt of witchery, the guilt nevertheless was non-existent. It is thus with all guilt.
2. And if you gaze for long into an abyss, the abyss gazes also into you.
3. Egoism is the very essence of a noble soul.
4. Faith: not wanting to know what is true
5. Fear is the mother of… Continue
Added by Ana the Borg on April 21, 2009 at 11:21pm —
Friedrich Nietzsche's Beyond Good and Evil
is a work of considerable analytical power, which penetrates right to the source of all moral concepts. Here are two of my favourite aphorisms-What is done out of love always takes place beyond good and evil
, and Madness is the exception in individuals but the rule in groups
The latter might best be illustrated by Arthur Miller's play The Crucible
and Henrik Ibsen's An Enemy of the People
. In Ibsen's play… Continue
Added by Ana the Borg on April 20, 2009 at 11:25pm —
It is important to understand that Christianity did not supersede the Old Testament. Indeed, after the death of Jesus, his followers continued for some time as a specifically Jewish sect, under the leadership, amongst others, of his half-brother, James the Just. The sect continued to observe Jewish rituals and customs, including circumscision. It was the advent of Paul and the broadening of the Church's ministry to embrace non-Jews, who were generally more receptive to the message, that… Continue
Added by Ana the Borg on April 20, 2009 at 11:12pm —
The first thing you should remove from your mind is the suspicion that Kierkegaard meant that we have no alternative but to follow moral rules. While he admits that such rules are hard to bend, his real meaning is altogether more subversive: that there is something quite arbitrary about the accepted notions of good and bad. It's not, of course, easy to set aside normal ethical judgements; for, as Kierkegaard also says, 'the ethical is the universal.'… Continue
Added by Ana the Borg on April 20, 2009 at 11:00pm —
I saw Revolutionary Road
earlier this year. It’s an excellent adaptation of Richard Yates' novel of the same name, with the lead characters brilliantly caught by Kate Winslet and Leonardo DiCaprio. Yes, it’s brilliant but also quite unsettling.
Frank and April Wheeler have it all: a comfortable home, children and a secure and reasonably affluent life, a lower middle-class version of the American dream. But there is a terrible… Continue
Added by Ana the Borg on April 20, 2009 at 3:04am —
I’ve been sexually active since I was thirteen years old, in one way or another. For a long time I had real issues about my sexual identity. From the age of twelve until I was eighteen I went to an all-girls boarding school and some of my earliest romantic feelings were for other girls, unattainable figures of perfection mostly, prefects in the upper school who would never condescend to an oink like me! I was convinced for a long-time that I must be a lesbian, though this did not prevent me… Continue
Added by Ana the Borg on April 19, 2009 at 11:53pm —
There are two senses in which 'history' can be understood. The first is that history is an examination of the past based on evidence, given shape by a particular mode of interpretation. There is however a second, more comprehensive and philosophical interpretation of the term.
In the past people conceived of 'history' not just as a series of events but almost as a kind of physical entity, a goddess, even, standing in judgement over human… Continue
Added by Ana the Borg on April 19, 2009 at 11:41pm —
I saw an interesting drama-documentary recently on the Titanic, this April marking the ninety-seventy anniversary of its sinking. It would seem that, amongst other things, some of the rivets were faulty, made from poor quality iron, the heads of which sheered off under the strain of impact. The programme also touched on the pathology, so to speak, of the iceberg in question, which seemingly had been at sea for up to two years prior to the fatal… Continue
Added by Ana the Borg on April 19, 2009 at 11:35pm —
This is a problem that has been addressed by both Bertrand Russell and A J Ayer. Russell puts forward one solution: the argument from analogy. We see that other people's behavior resembles our own, and we know that our own behaviour arises from mental processes, so it follows that other people also have these processes, though, of course, this proceeds from intuition, it might be said, rather than proof. The example here is that if I experience pain on the basis of certain unpleasant… Continue
Added by Ana the Borg on April 18, 2009 at 4:11am —
You will find discussion of the significance and nature of fear in Kierkegaard, but by far the most compelling account is to be found in the work of Heidegger. He represents fear by a feeling that 'it is coming close.' Fear takes many forms, but we can live with these because they are most often 'at a distance.' Real fear is when the potential threat, whatever form that takes, has broken through-"In fearing as such, what we have thus characterised as… Continue
Added by Ana the Borg on April 18, 2009 at 3:12am —
Yes, very interesting, Will, though it might have helped if you had begun by defining what ‘mind’ actually is, or, rather, how you yourself conceive mind. Your heading already, so to speak, prejudges the whole question, supplying the direction to which you wish to travel.
What exactly is it that you are trying to say? That the mind does not exist, that it is an ‘illusion’ disconnected from the ‘Source’; that it is not consciousness but ‘unconsciousness’? But it seems to me that the… Continue
Added by Ana the Borg on April 18, 2009 at 2:52am —
Have you ever heard of the Rollright Stones? Possibly not! Well, it’s a megalithic stone circle in Oxfordshire, England, near the villages of Little and Great Rollright. There are seventy of these stones in all in the main circle, long referred to as the King’s Men. Close by there is a smaller group known as the Whispering Knights, seemingly huddled together in conversation. There is also one lonely outsider, known as the King Stone.
Added by Ana the Borg on April 17, 2009 at 12:32am —
Here's another one, a real hoot!
I imagine quite a lot of Americans are familiar with Christine Darg, a rather repellent evangelist? I, thankfully, was not, or at least I was not until I read about her in a January issue of The Spectator
, where she features in an Article by Rod Liddle (Onward Christian Zionists
Apparently this woman set up webcam overlooking the Golden Gate in Jerusalem in 1998, the very spot she… Continue
Added by Ana the Borg on April 17, 2009 at 12:22am —
The current modish obsession with the significance of 2012 caused me to wing through past apocalypse literature; of catastrophes predicted and anticipated; of dates that came…and went! And what wonderfully bizarre stuff one comes across, what grossly bizarre people.
Let me give you the example of Chizuo Matsumoto, a failed Japanese herbalist, who in 1984 founded the Aum Association of Mountain Wizards, also known as Aum Shinriko. This… Continue
Added by Ana the Borg on April 17, 2009 at 12:13am —
I rather suspect that Friedrich Nietzsche will forever remain one of those people half-understood at best, always in a sense standing in the shadows; always tainted by association with the darker currents of German history. In Fascism for Beginners
he is depicted in cartoon form, walrus-moustache and all, saying "Our ideal is to achieve the superman by collective experiments in discipline and breeding."
Nasty stuff, certainly; but is… Continue
Added by Ana the Borg on April 16, 2009 at 12:49am —
In the Tractatus Logico-Philosophicus
Wittgenstein says that the limits of thought are determined by the limits of language. In other words, we cannot go beyond language; for to do so would be to go beyond the limits of logical possibility. Logical propositions, expressed in language, are, according to Wittgenstein, 'pictures of the world.' This means, in effect, that certain things simply cannot be said if they do not correspond to the reality… Continue
Added by Ana the Borg on April 16, 2009 at 12:40am —