Thu Dec 27th, 2007 at 07:53:57 PM EST
I have been reading absolutely flabbergasted the latest discussions.. I was so flabbergasted that I stayed away of one of my favourite topics: Anthropology, science, magic and religion.
It is in this time of emergency that I think I should break my vow (becasue that's why vows are for, to disobey them) of not writing anything serious or relevant anymore.
So for the first time in a long time I am going to write something very very serious (you'd better hit the rec bottom and fast!.. what the hell Mig you'd better frontpage this :) [editor's note, by Migeru] Yeah, why not?). It is time to humble humbilly save this community (yeah sure *)
Once upon a time I had a master... a master that taught me "the secret", yeah the secret.. the secret about how to really overcome the wedge philosphical barrier among members of the left.. the so-called rationalists uberscientists vs spiritualists-magic-youcrazyscientists.
I must say I hate those words for the two cathegories because we are all different (as the life of Brian proved). So here I am , sharing with you one of the most deep secrets... all with the hope that this small secret/tale will show that we have more in common that we dare to speak... and hoping that we all will be friends again after the christmas drunk party is over and that everybody will be happier than before Xmas.
Follow me below the fold to the christmas tale.
A christmas tale..
It was a long long time ago in a faraway kingdom that four families in the same street had to come/endevour/enjoy four equally smart 18 year old women/men. The day came when all the four friends, living in the same street had to depart for a long long journey. A new life was waiting for them..but unfortunately a big warning came from the central palace that brought discomfort to the Street. If the men/women of the Street wanted to depart to new and adventorous lifes they had to pass a very difficult and cunning examination. All the men/women in their 18's had to present themselves in the court/main/cinderella palace in four months where the masters of the Kingdon will deliver them ten questions that they had to answer. If they failed to answer them properly (most of them) they would have to remain in the kingdom for another year or even more doing the dreaded and hated "usless bank accounting".
The dreams of our four men/women (ok men from now on....they were still pre-Shrek times) were in the balance... they would not be able to finance windmills as one wanted or study complex system dynamics in biophysics, or be a cloud/clown or a teacher in foreign land unless they passed the exam. All their dreams, their lifes, everything depended on that incredibly difficult exam.
As soon as the topics the pupils had to learn for the exam reached the houses in the Street, strong deliveration burst into each one of the houses.
In one of the houses, one of our brave men (later known for his incredible insight into the world of protein unfolding) went to the library, copied all the books that could be somehow related with the topics in the exam, closed herself in his room (I love changing english male/female pronouns) and almost disregarded any social life. Meanwhile all the family decided to support him by making the standard four wheels turn around magic rithual. The rithual, whose main goal was to create a universal trascendental magic influx that, according to the tradition, helped everybody in a situation of "passing a life test". Since it was clear that it was a real life test for the younger in the house, all the family performed the rithual every single day until the day of the exam and even some days afterwards. The young guy in the family who had closed himself in the room actually could not care less about the family...he had never believed in this magic protocol whatsoever. The family, his son reticence notwithstanding, performed the magic rithual every single day.
Very close, in the neighboring house, the family of a future brilliant windmill financer had taken a completely different approach. They could not accept that their son would close himself of any formal social life, they loved him too much. So they decided that he would only study in his free time, and not very deeply. But since they really wanted him to pass the exam they decided to gather morning and night in absolute family prayer. In their house, there was a long tradition of believing in an spiritual entity that was behind all the forces in the unvierse: An entity that actually you could not name though I think everybody called her G_d: Some members of the family believed that she was actually the light behind the things. Other people, well actually one, in the family said he was "the Word" (although nobody really listened/understood grandpa when he talked). Other people felt like the deity was three people at the same time (something about a father and a son and I do not exactly what more), while others actually thought that this deity actually worked via a hundred or a thousand semigods (or saints as the female aunt in the family liked to call them) that should be attended and almost blackmailed in an every day prayer. If they gave so much attention to the deity, they thought, the deity in turn would take care that the son, and future windmill financer, will pass the exam with minimum time outside the family... and so they prayed.
A little bit more uphill, the third family had a similar discussion.. but the future clown (one of the best that ever existed) told the family that his vocation was making fun of rules and that of course he could not follow that "rule of examination". Not studying for the exam was a matter of choice, a decision. The family of course had to decide if they wanted to support his son with any magic or spiritual rithual.. but actually, they thought, it would be like helping him against his wishes..even if it was in an indirect way. So the family formally decided that the future clown would study almost nothing and they would pray/sing/enchant even less. Everything was left to the karmic future.. and whatever had/should happen would happen to be, this being him not passing the exam. Some members of the family decided to filibuster in private.. There was no wrong in them making the holly-holy-holly chanting of the Re phase so that whatever would be good for his son would happen. For this subgroup, if the good thing that should happen to his son was passing the exam (even when he did not really wanted to pass the exam) they would make sure with the song that this indeed would happen.
And finally, we move to our fourth house where the future teacher in foreign land lived... the younger man in the fourth house, following the instincts/instructions of one of his best friends, went to the library and also took all the books he could gather.. and also decided that the best thing to do was to study, and study a lot. Alone, in his room. He did not particularly believe or disbelieve magic rithuals but he did know as anybody his age, that studying would be better. But the family was not at all supportive of his son, sure he was smart, and nice, and the relation was ok but his younger sister was actually the focus of attention of the family since she was so cute and adorable.. They frankly never gathered to make any actual discussion about how to help his son. So no rithual was proposed, no magic would appear in the house, nothing , nilch, nada. They were too focused on his sister, and, after all, the son would study a lot so.... there was nothing really to worry about..One of the most important points in the life of his son was rendered as magically and spiritually irrelevant... so they did nothing.
And the big day came, and the fourth guys went to palace..and the four handsome smart men took the exam.. and all left with mixed feelings about how the exam had gone, and what was the proper answer to the questions.. All of them went back home.. to sit down calmly with the family and wait for the notes that sooner or later would have to arrive.
The first family which received the grades was the family of the future biologists and physicist. The grades were absolutely/incredibly good. Happiness was all around. Our man was very happy because he knew he had worked hard and now the reward had arrived, it was him the one that made it.. but he also was happy to see his family happy. And the family was no less happy. The magic rithual they all had done, had worked. They all knew that the son had worked a lot .. but the magic had made sure than nothing weird happened, that no weird question appeared in the exam, that his son did not have a bad day the day of the exam and that the books that he had chosen to study were really helpful. They all knew that the son had studied but magic had taken care of all the contingencies. When the son saw the happiness of the family and how they were proud of him, magic rithuals notwithstanding, he suddenly realized that it had been a blessing to have the support of all the family, and that after all, maybe the support had been in a very physical sense, magical/real.
While everything was happiness in the house where study and magic had worked together, the same can be said about the house of our lovely future clown. Of course, he had failed miserably, so he had made his stand. It was clear that he, at the end of the day, did not want to pass the exam, so the members of the family that did do the chanting and the singing accepted that the best for the younger of the house was actually making a stand and failing... a new future would be around the corner... it would be again for the family to decide in the future what path to take... but the karma had done his job.
No less joy bursted in the house of our future windmill financer when the grades that arrived showed that he had passed the exam. There was absolutely no doubt that all the prayers had effect. Without the Light, or the Word or the essence the son could have not done it. The different faces and rithuals sharing a common goal had without doubt brought the miracle. The son actually had the idea that the fact he studied smartly had also something to do with him passing the exam (he also mentioned something about an universal health care sytem in his memories but we quite do not still understand what he meant).. but he had no doubt that the magic-religious beliefs and acts of his family, and the strong unity in front of the deity had made the trick.
Three year laters, the young windmill financer recalled those days and asked himself.. what would have really happened if he would have not passed the exam? what? Not in the sense of what would have happen to him since he would had, for sure, took the examination the next year... but what would have happened to the family? And he inmediately knew. The reasons for the failing would have been easily explained. On one hand, the boy had not studied enough, next time he should study more. You can not leave to chance so many things.. you know just in case G_d thinks you are not taking it seriously. And at the same time, the failure of the deity to follow his part of the pact showed that he/she/it was clearly not happy with the arrangement, so next year the family would have to take a serious vow, and not simply praying...So more study for him and more pray would have clearly lead to him passing the exam next year. The windmill financer was happy to have such a family.
And finally, we reach our last house. the house of the futrue teacher in foreign land.. well actually of the future teacher in foreign land that never came to be. Despite his days and nights of study, despite his efforts, despite how smart he was, he had failed the exam. He really wanted to pass it, and move away from home, but somehting happened, he really did not know at first. May be he did not take the appropriate books, or maybe it was that he was not smart enough, maybe it was that something wrong was in the air that day that made him stupid for some hours... why him, why? And then he looked around, he looked at his family who never really supported him, who never moved a finger for him because they were focused on his younger sister.. and when he looked at them, the family realized. The family, absolutely ashamed, tried to ask for forgiveness, for not being there.. The son was now sure, the only thing he needed was the magic support of his family, and this support had been missing, he had no real family, no social net, no support... and the house froze suddenly.. relations were lost, enemity ensued.
Only the grand-grandfather of the family uttered with a low and crackign voice some words that still can be heard in the now-ghosted house....you walk by the house today you can still hear the echo of his voice saying "If only.. if only we had made a magic rithual we would be sure now that you did not fail because we did not love you"
I vet aqui un gos, vet aqui un gat, aquest compte s'ha acabat.
Merry Chrsitmas- Happy NY everybody!!!!.. oh and use the thread wisely.... this is a magical reconciliation place... specially for Jerome and Fran (though I love you all)