Adonis Diaries

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Notes and comments on FB. Part 8

Germany is planning to demolish the house of Hitler so it won’t become a pilgrimage location. It has been done before: France king Louis 14 erased the Jansenist Port-Royal monastery where Racine and Pascal were buried for the same reason. The king even transferred 3,000 of the dead bodies into various locations. I’m wondering: is there any cemetery close to Hitler house?

Take any Compliment as cash, and run with it. Give some to the first gloomy face you encounter

My comments are meant to be humorous. If they nail a sensitive nerve, moralizing me is Not the proper response. I’m Not in the mood of exacerbated sensibilities.

Vous saviez que j’ai une grande gueule…Pourquoi vous me faite chier? (Philippine president Duterte to Obama)

Etre amoureux n’est ni doux ni tender. Rien n’en est proche comme la haine. Tout nous trahit: la voix, le silence, les yeux…

Opinions should be quantified and verified. Free expressions are simple positions extracted from abstract concepts. Opinion: You know or Don’t know. Position in issues: You care or don’t give a hoot.

Another couple of months to wait: Anxious to see a glimmer of light at end of horrendous dark labyrinth

L’esprit s’enfonce plusieurs fois par jour dans des conjectures, des paris, des doutes…Les moments de confidence et de conviction sont rares, qui echappent instantanement. J’ai peur que mes intuitions qui tournent fondamentales

L’hymen chez les Romains n’admet qu’une Romaine. Rome hait tous les rois; et Berenice est reine

Ne pas se suicider: On ne veut pas avoir des regrets parcequ’on s’est trompé? C’est trop con. S’il y a quelque chose dans ce monde qui vaut la peine de vivre, et suffisamment esthetique, je ne dois pas le louper.

La communaute des “Vétements Blancs”, precursseurs des Anabaptists/Calvinist, ces amalgams de juif/Chretiens, vivaient en 200 AC pres du fleuve Tigre (Iraq) pres de la ville de Ctesiphon dans l’Empire Perse des Sassanides. Ils etaient persecutes par l’empire Byzantine (Ouest de  l’Euphrates) comme des heretiques. Cette communaute recluse and sectaire invoquait Jean-Baptiste, le Nazareen, Thomas et baptise par immersion dans le fleuve a 3 reprise. Chant, dance, eouvre d’art… etaient prohibés. Cette communaute etait vegetarienne aussi

La punctuation juste? Je m’en fous: J’ecris comme je lis. De la facon que je comprend: je lis lentement

Did you pay your “dolores” today? Not the bill, the daily headache. Great to discriminate among the pains

Chaque passion suit sa logique. Faut apprendre des versions du raisonnement logique.

Le Bonheur est un moment fulgurant: et on commence a detester le temps qui use ce qui est beau.

Nous ne parlions pas en famille. Chacun vaquait dans sa solitude interieure, ses chimeres et ses conjectures

Le plus malheureux, celui qui a efface de ses souvenirs les moment des eveils de sa conscience. La premiere fois un etranger pronounce son Nom, lui donne une identité. La premiere fois on reconnait dans des yeux de l’admiration, au lieu de la pitié.

Le male a un coté feminin, et vice versa. Je suis suspicieux des fammes qui avance, battons des tambours: “Je veux sentir ton coté feminin”.

The World’s Newest Major Religion: No Religion

As secularism grows, atheists and agnostics are trying to expand and diversify their ranks.

You don’t usually think of churches as going out of business, but it happens. In March, driven by parishioner deaths and lack of interest, the U.K. Mennonites held their last collective service.

It might seem easy to predict that plain-dressing Anabaptists—who follow a faith related to the Amish—would become irrelevant in the age of smartphones, but this is part of a larger trend.

Around the world, when asked about their feelings on religion, more and more people are responding with a meh.

The religiously unaffiliated, called “nones,” are growing significantly. They’re the second largest religious group in North America and most of Europe. In the United States, nones make up almost a quarter of the population.

In the past decade, U.S. nones have overtaken Catholics, mainline protestants, and all followers of non-Christian faiths.

Asad Ghsoub shared this link
news.nationalgeographic.com

A lack of religious affiliation has profound effects on how people think about death, how they teach their kids, and even how they vote.  (Watch The Story of God With Morgan Freeman for more about how different religions understand God and creation.)

There have long been predictions that religion would fade from relevancy as the world modernizes, but all the recent surveys are finding that it’s happening startlingly fast.

France will have a majority secular population soon. So will the Netherlands and New Zealand. The United Kingdom and Australia will soon lose Christian majorities.

Religion is rapidly becoming less important than it’s ever been, even to people who live in countries where faith has affected everything from rulers to borders to architecture.

But nones aren’t inheriting the Earth just yet. In many parts of the world—sub-Saharan Africa in particular—religion is growing so fast that nones’ share of the global population will actually shrink in 25 years as the world turns into what one researcher has described as “the secularizing West and the rapidly growing rest.”

(The other highly secular part of the world is China, where the Cultural Revolution tamped down religion for decades, while in some former Communist countries, religion is on the increase.)

And even in the secularizing West, the rash of “religious freedom bills”—which essentially decriminalize discrimination—are the latest front in a faith-tinged culture war in the United States that shows no signs of abetting anytime soon.

Within the ranks of the unaffiliated, divisions run deep.

Some are avowed atheists. Others are agnostic. And many more simply don’t care to state a preference.

Organized around skepticism toward organizations and united by a common belief that they do not believe, nones as a group are just as internally complex as many religions. And as with religions, these internal contradictions could keep new followers away.

Millennials to God: No Thanks

If the world is at a religious precipice, then we’ve been moving slowly toward it for decades.

Fifty years ago, Time asked in a famous headline, “Is God Dead?” The magazine wondered whether religion was relevant to modern life in the post-atomic age when communism was spreading and science was explaining more about our natural world than ever before.

We’re still asking the same question. But the response isn’t limited to yes or no.

A chunk of the population born after the article was printed may respond to the provocative question with, “God who?” In Europe and North America, the unaffiliated tend to be several years younger than the population average.

And 11 percent of Americans born after 1970 were raised in secular homes.

Scientific advancement isn’t just making people question God, it’s also connecting those who question.

It’s easy to find atheist and agnostic discussion groups online, even if you come from a religious family or community. And anyone who wants the companionship that might otherwise come from church can attend a secular Sunday Assembly or one of a plethora of Meetups for humanists, atheists, agnostics, or skeptics.

The groups behind the web forums and meetings do more than give skeptics witty rejoinders for religious relatives who pressure them to go to church—they let budding agnostics know they aren’t alone.

But it’s not easy to unite people around not believing in something.

“Organizing atheists is like herding cats,” says Stephanie Guttormson, the operations director of the Richard Dawkins Foundation, which is merging with the Center for Inquiry. “But lots of cats have found their way into the ‘meowry.’”

Guttormson says the goal of her group is to organize itself out of existence. They want to normalize atheism to a point where it’s so common that atheists no longer need a group to tell them it’s okay not to believe, or to defend their morals in the face of religious lawmakers.

But it’s not there yet.

Atheism’s Diversity Problem

The Center for Inquiry in Washington, D.C., hosts a regular happy hour called Drinking Skeptically. On a Wednesday in late March, about a dozen people showed up to faithlessly imbibe, and all but one were white.

“Most of the groups I’ve seen have been predominantly white, but I’m not sure what to attribute that to,” says Kevin Douglas, the lone African-American drinker, shrugging at the demographics. He came from a religious family in New York and struggled internally with his skepticism until shortly after college. The only time he mentions having difficulty with others accepting his atheism was when he worked in Dallas, Texas, and race, he says, had little to do with it.

But more typically, “there is pressure from our [African-American] community,” says Mandisa Thomas, the founder and president of the Atlanta-based Black Nonbelievers, Inc. This pressure stems from the place religion—Christianity in particular—holds in African-American history.

In the abolition movement churches “became a support system for blacks. It became almost the end-all be-all for the black community for a number of years,” Thomas says, adding that the Civil Rights movement was dominated—she says “hijacked”—by religious leaders.

“If you either reject or identify as a nonbeliever, you’re seen as betraying your race,” she says.

Thomas is an outlier among nonbelievers for another reason. She’s a woman.

The secularizing West is full of white men.

The general U.S. population is 46 percent male and 66 percent white, but about 68 percent of atheists are men, and 78 percent are white. Atheist Alliance International has called the gender imbalance in its ranks “a significant and urgent issue.”

The Privilege of Not Believing

There are a few theories about why people become atheists in large numbers. Some demographers attribute it to financial security, which would explain why European countries with a stronger social safety net are more secular than the United States, where poverty is more common and a medical emergency can bankrupt even the insured.

Atheism is also tied to education, measured by academic achievement (atheists in many places tend to have college degrees) or general knowledge of the panoply of beliefs around the world (hence theories that Internet access spurs atheism).

There’s some evidence that official state religions drive people away from faith entirely, which could help explain why the U.S. is more religious than most Western nations that technically have a state religion, even if it is rarely observed.

The U.S. is also home to a number of homegrown churches—Scientology, Mormonism—that might scoop up those who are disenchanted with older faiths.

The social factors that promote atheism—financial security and education—have long been harder to attain for women and people of color in the United States.

Around the world, the Pew Research Center finds that women tend to be more likely to affiliate with a religion and more likely to pray and find religion important in their lives. That changes when women have more opportunities.

“Women who are in the labor force are more like men in religiosity. Women out of the labor force tend to be more religious,” says Conrad Hackett with Pew. “Part of that might be because they’re part of a religious group that enforces the power of women being at home.”

In a Washington Post op-ed about the racial divides among atheists, Black Skeptics Group founder Sikivu Hutchinson points out that “the number of black and Latino youth with access to quality science and math education is still abysmally low.” That means they have fewer economic opportunities and less exposure to a worldview that does not require the presence of God.

Religion has a place for women, people of color, and the poor. By its nature, secularism is open to all, but it’s not always as welcoming.

Some of the humanist movement’s most visible figures aren’t known for their respect toward women. Prominent atheists Sam Harris and Richard Dawkins have awful reputations for misogyny, as does the late Christopher Hitchens. Bill Maher, the comedian and outspoken atheist, is no (nonexistent) angel, either.

The leaders of Atheist Alliance International, Dawkins Foundation, and Center for Inquiry who I talked to were all well aware of the demographic shortcomings, and they’re working on it: All of the leaders I spoke to were women.

Even people who are white, male, and educated may fear the stigma of being labeled a nonbeliever.

A white dentist at the CFI’s Drinking Skeptically event didn’t want to go on the record out of a fear that patients wouldn’t want an atheist working on their teeth.

“We have this stigma that we’re combative, that we’re arrogant, that we just want to provoke religious people,” Thomas with Black Nonbelievers, Inc. says. She’s working on changing that, and increasing the visibility of nonbelievers of color, too.

Thompson believes the demographics of nones don’t accurately reflect the number and diversity of nonbelievers; it just shows who is comfortable enough to say they don’t believe out loud.

“There are many more people of color, there are many more women who identify as atheists,” she says. “There are many people who attend church who are still atheists.”

Expanding the Ranks

What’s sometimes called the New Atheism picked up in the mid-2000s. These were years of war, when Islam was painted as a threat and Christianity infused U.S. policy, abroad and domestically, most visibly in faith-based ballot initiatives against same-sex marriage.

In the U.S., many state legislators are still using a narrow interpretation of Christian morals to deny services to gay people and appropriate restrooms to people who are transgender.

But the national backlash to religious legislation has become faster and fiercer than ever before.

Europeans seem set on addressing Islamophobia and the forces that could create tension with the “rapidly growing rest.”

And compared to past campaign seasons, religion is taking a backseat in this year’s U.S. presidential election. Donald Trump is not outwardly religious (and his attraction of evangelical voters has raised questions about the longevity and the motives of the religious right).

Hillary Clinton has said “advertising about faith doesn’t come naturally to me.”

And Bernie Sanders is “not actively involved” in a religion.

Their reticence about religion reflects the second largest religious group in the country they hope to run. Aside from Ted Cruz, the leading candidates just aren’t up for talking about religion. The number of Americans who seek divine intervention in the voting booth seems to be shrinking.

For all the work secular groups do to promote acceptance of nonbelievers, perhaps nothing will be as effective as apathy plus time. As the secular millennials grow up and have children of their own, the only Sunday morning tradition they may pass down is one everyone in the world can agree on: brunch.

Most potent Queen: 16th century Catherine of Medicis

The 16th century was one of the most violent of centuries: massacres, religious genocide events, perpetual wars, famine, plagues (moria)…

And yet, the 16th century was ripe with illustrious and famous personalities and characters: Da Vinci, Michael Angelo, Machiavelli, Ariosto, England Elizabeth I, Shakespeare, Phillip II of Spain, Charles Quint, Savonarola, Luther, Calvin

You can say Europe in the 16th century was the Christian flip coin of current ISIS (Daesh) in extremism, cruelty and fixation in their belief systems.

Every nascent religious sect, and they were numerous (Protestants, Calvinists, Lutherans, Baptists, Anabaptists…), and they all adopted the Old Testament stories for guidance and the Ancient prophets proclamations as their guiding rod to commit massacres and try to wipe out the other sect members.

This is a typical case of counter reaction since the Catholics focused on the message of Jesus (The New Testament) and the stories of the saints while they had the Old testament on the back burner.

This trend in focus is still adopted today with both sects.

The Catholics were called the papists, the Protestant sects in France were called parpaillot, reformists, biblical and they wore the white scarf

Almost any Prince with wealth hired from the large pool of mercenaries to attack towns and villages and get the title of the vanquished prince and the razzia loot.

Katarina of Medicis lost both her parents as a child.

Her father was Laurent II of Florence and her mother was the French Madeleine de Bourbon of Auvergne.

By the age of 18, she had lost all her cousins and relatives. Italy was the scene of constant wars among the princes and town and cities changed hands very frequently.  For example her aunt, half-brother Alexander and cousin Hippolyte died by poisoning and in battles.

Catherine spent most of her childhood in prisons, monasteries, nunneries… until her great uncle Pope Clement managed to arrange her wedding to the second son of France King Francois I.

The French King and his son Henry were made prisoners by the monarch Charles Quint at the Pavia battle in Italy, and they remained incarcerated for 5 years.

Henri II and Catherine were 14 years old when they married.

At their wedding night, King Francois entered their bedroom and watched the actual intercourse and made sure to see the bloody bed sheet.

And Catherine could not get pregnant until she was 18 and she lived in perpetual fear of being divorced, but King Francois liked his Duchessina.

Her first son Francois died in childhood. And she remained pregnant every year for 15 years.

Diane de Poitier, the eternal sweet heart of King Henry until he died, wanted Catherine to be pregnant all the time so that she keep the king all to herself.

There was no competition: Diane was beautiful and tall, while Catherine was short, chubby and plain.

Henry II wore the black and white preferred colors of his beloved Diane and all the emblems had the H and D initials.

After Henry died in a Knight Fighting joust during a ceremony by the captain of his Scottish troop Montgomery, Diane met with Catherine and Diane retreated to her chateau, never to hear from her again.

Catherine gave birth a couple of times to twins who died in childbirth and many other of her progenitor.

Only 3 of her male kids survived to live to be over 3o and no more than 35 Two became kings Charles 9 and Henry 3.

The daughters who survived to get married off were 3: Elizabeth, Claude and Marguerite (Margo )

The eldest Elizabeth was betrothed to Phillip II of Spain, Claude to the Prince of Lorraine, and Marguerite (Margo ) to Henry of Navarre, who became king Henry 4, and thus the dynasty turned over from the Valois to the Bourbon.

Margo and Henry had no liking to one another and they mostly led separate life. Margo fucked every attractive person she liked and had love affairs with her brothers, particularly the future Henry III.

When Henry 4 was assassinated, Margo continued her life-style of total debauchery and refused to be detached from her Regency status even after her son Louis 13 was enthroned.

Catherine had two critical jobs to battle for:

1. Secure and maintain the French dynasty of Les Valois through her sons

2. Avoid any excuses for Spain King Phillip 2 to invade France. Phillip 2 was the most powerful and wealthiest monarch in western Europe.

Actually, Catherine denied the Spanish troops permission to cross France in order to enter and occupy Belgium and the Netherlands

Some how, her immature sons took advantage of their mother’s worries and priorities by allying with French factions against King Phillip’s Catholic policies and constituted coalitions of princes opposing Catherine policies of neutrality.

The eldest son Charles 9 was cruel, brutal and a nitwit. He was tightly linked to admiral Gaspard de Coligny (a Huguenot Protestant sect) and they were scheming to form an army and harass the Spanish troops in Belgium.

That was a red line that Coligny should have not crossed for Catherine, and she decided to assassinate de Coligny

The attempt failed and the admiral was just wounded. Catherine knew that the fingers will point to her and she hurriedly met with her son King Charles 9 for the entire night, figuring a way out of that mess to avoid a civil war.

Finally Charles gave up and screamed “Kill him, kill them all”

Her son Henry gave the job to his great friend, the catholic prince Henry de Guise who insisted on waging wars on the Huguenots. De Guise didn’t wait for the green light and attacked the Huguenot early morning.

What was supposed to decapitate the leaders of this sect, turned out a massive massacre. The genocide in Paris lasted 3 days and 4 nights and then it spread to the provinces for months. After the massacre, on the 4th day, the shopkeepers, butchers and common people returned to their jobs as if nothing happened.

The insane and cruel Charles 9 lost it completely after this tragedy and stayed in his castle blowing his horns as if going hunting and screaming from the top of his head. He died at the age of 34.

Her second son Henry was her favourite. There were negotiation of marrying Henry to Elizabeth I of England that faltered because henry believed the rumors in France circles that Elizabeth was the “whore of London”

For a brief winter, Henry was pressured to travel to Poland in order to rule this country as its monarch, but he fled with his French companions and travelled across Europe, Venice and other Italian cities.

Henry’s passion as a young man was designing clothes and appointed himself the cloth designer in all ceremonies. He even designed what his brother-in law Henry of Navarre wore during his wedding. 

When Charles 9 died, Henry became King Henry III who was unstable and frequently whipped himself all night longs for forgiveness and chastisement. He brought wild animals and imprisoned them in a deep hole. One day he decided to kill a lion in the hole and then let the wild beasts devour one another.

His old friend Henry de Guise was receiving regular amount of money from Phillip II of Spain to destabilize France and keep it in constant civil war. And he set his mind to grab the throne since he was the most popular figure in Paris. De Guise was tall, svelte, handsome, blonde and rich.

In the nick of time, Henry III decided to flee to the Castle of Chartres in order not to be kept prisoner in Paris. It is there that Henry III receive intelligence that the Spanish Armada was destroyed and the attempt to invade England failed.

Eventually, Henry drew de Guise to his Palace and assassinated him by his Pretorian guards, along with de Guise’s brother the young Cardinal of Lorraine.  Pretorian guards or spadassins of 45 in number were from Gascoigne and headed by Du Guast. Catherine was dying during this assassination in another room.

And what of Catherine’s youngest son Francois?

Francois was fragile in health and eventually died of tuberculosis at the age of 30.

The king of Scotland sent his kid daughter Marie Stuart to Paris to live and be educated in the French court. Marie is the future  Queen of Scotland whom her cousin Elizabeth I would incarcerate in a London dungeon and decapitate her 8 years later.

Marie and Francois were inseparable, played together and were in love.

When Catherine husband Henry II was seriously injured, the surgeons were experimenting with “”live subjects” in order to discover the best way to perform the surgery on the dying Henry. Catherine forced Marie to watch the bloody surgery on one of the live person so that Marie learn “what it takes to be a queen

Until Marie had to leave France at the age of 18 after her father died. Marie never returned to France.

Francois gave his mother plenty of worries and troubles. He frequently disappeared from the screen of Catherine in order to form coalitions opposing either his brother Henry III or to fight the Spanish troops in Belgium.

Francois even paid a visit to London to rally Elizabeth I to his cause. He was a frequent visitor to Elizabeth’s bedroom until she got fed up and kicked him out of her bed, room and England.

Francois spent his last year leading an army in Belgium, occupying a town one day and losing another the next day.

Catherine had to criss-cross France several times and for a couple of years each time and way into her 60’s. Many of those long trips were meant to find her sons lost from her screen of control and who were complotting and joining coalitions (Ligues).

In her old age, she had to travel across France at the demands of  her immature sons of kings who were reluctant and unable to perform much of anything of value or to negotiate any peace treaty.

And Catherine was feared, respected, and admired for her abilities, steadfastness and clear visions by all the factious princes.

Catherine relied on her “Girls” the “Flying Spies” to gather critical pieces of intelligence of the creation of inside coalitions among the princes and managed to disperse or decapitate in the bud many alliances that constituted a threat to the throne of the Valois dynasty or which could invite foreign powers to attack France..

Catherine managed to maintain the integrity of France and avoided to intervene militarily outside France.

She was the Regent, in-power or effectively for 40 years and was the doyen (Dean) of the Western European monarchies  for several decades.

If it were not for her deceiving and deceitful sons of kings and her useless daughters, France would have witnessed the best powerful Queen they ever had.

She died before she could save Henry 3 who had accumulated enemies through his reckless decisions.

Catherine was a real genius in politics and statesmanship.

Mostly, real geniuses come from the pool of early orphaned persons

Note 1: Read the French book of Michel Peyramaure 

Note 2: In these centuries, absolute monarchies agreed to sign “peace treaties” when these 3 conditions were satisfied:

1. One of the monarch is feeling the weight of age and is terribly reluctant to go out on a long adventure

2. The treasury is bankrupt

3. Civil wars about to break out if one of the sons is vying for the throne

At this junction, the monarch gets busy “selling off” to the highest bidder his daughters and sons to kings and princes.

If the negotiations do not replenish the treasury, at least temporary truces are to be expected.

Soon enough, one of the sons snatches the throne, and being too anxious for adventure, more wars are ignited and the cycle is closed.

Sure, a historian can amass plenty of other causes to explain and validate the ridiculous frequent wars and skirmishes, but the simplest overwhelming reason is related of” totally bored young monarchs” with plenty of energy to spend outside of hunting parties.

The all-time freest spirit: Humanist Montaigne

The French essayist Michel Eyquem, known as Montaigne (1533-1592), died a century after the Americas were “discovered”:  He read and heard eye-witness accounts of what pains, suffering, and crimes against humanity the America Indians have been submitted to.

He wrote in his Essays (Book 3):

“Everyone labels barbarian behaviors, customs not of his own usage or habit observed in other tribes or new people.”  This is pretty relevant in all generations, in all ethnic people, and in all religions.  This is valid for the European, the Americans, the Spanish, the Portuguese, the French, the German, the Japanese, the Chinese, the Russians, the Catholics, the Moslems… in every decade and century, all the way to our “modern time”.

Every colonial power imposed their own customs and system of beliefs on “barbarians” they invaded and then exploited to replenish empty crown treasuries.

Montaigne was the eldest of five boys and three girls and inherited the estate of Montaigne. In this 16th century, smack in Europe Renaissance and religious wars between the Protestants (Calvinists, Anabaptists, and Huguenots of France) and the Catholics of papal Rome, the French humanist Montaigne wrote:

”I try to get moving.  Life is movement of matters and bodies; it is an imperfect action of its essence and deregulated.  I work at serving life.  I brag to meticulously embracing the commodities of life and I find but wind.  But are we not partners of the wind?  The wind howls, is agitated, does not desire stability or solidity.  Vanity is the wisdom of the wind and mankind.”

In 1571, Montaigne decided to retreat from politics, the court, and social responsibilities but the isolation was short-lived:  In 1572, the regent of France, Catherine of Medici, fomented the religious massacre of St. Barthelemy against the Huguenots all over France.

Bordeaux in the Perigor province was the bastion of the Huguenots Protestants.  Catholic Paris clamped down on the Huguenots several times.  Montaigne wrote:

I am Christian in the same title as I am from Perigor.”

Montaigne didn’t give religious belief any weight surpassing the reality of existence and communication among people and daily trade.  King Henry IV, the contemporary and friend of Montaigne converted to Catholicism in order to be crowned King of France. Historians coined this phrase to Henry IV: “Paris is worth convertin.”, but it is not true that he said it

Montaigne tours Europe for a year in 1580.  He travelled in Germany, Switzerland, and Italy and had to cut his trip short as he was elected mayor of Bordeaux for two years.  Montaigne said in the introduction of his Essays:

I do not teach; I tell stories.”

What follows are a few quotations from Montaigne that demostrate his humanistic tendencies:

Mankind has no communication whatsoever with his entity

“Human eyes perceive things only through the forms of their knowledge

“I like my friend La Boetie (Montaigne’s colleague in the Bordeaux city parliament) because he is what he is; because I am what I am…”

“He may be as wise as he wishes to be; but finally, he is a man:  That he is more archaic, more miserable, and more of the void.”

Wise principles cannot impress upon our natural conditions

Note:  Leonor was the only daughter of nine who survived to beget Montaigne’s grandchild named Francoise de la Tour Montaigne in 1591, a year before he died.

Is this a challenging time?  Any news?

In the 16th century, smack in Europe Renaissance and religious wars between the Protestants (Calvinists, Anabaptists, and Huguenots of France) and the Catholics of papal Rome, the French humanist Montaigne wrote:

“I try to get moving.  Life is movement of matters and bodies; it is an imperfect action of its essence and deregulation.  I work at serving life.  I brag to meticulously embrace the commodities of life and find but wind.  But are we not partners of the wind?  The wind howls, is agitated, does not desire stability or solidity.  Vanity is the wisdom of the wind and mankind.”

Amid the growing calamities and instabilities of our current world, people are learning to improvise, to adapt to ever-increasing change.

People are rediscovering the potency of weaker links in society, friendship, acquaintances, and in couples.  The stronger links of religion, marriage, and workplace are no longer available or convincing in our isolation.

People are discovering that life is a series of accidents. Taking risks is the name of the game:  The higher our fragility the more powerfully we act and improvise; the greater the magnitude for change the freer we become to evolve and resume life.

We are recognizing that our ultimate purpose is living and learning to steal longer and more frequent moments of joy, happiness, and pleasure.

We are readier to admit that active desires in what we already own and have is the essence of living instead of desiring what we are lacking or are missing from the past.

We are living in a most challenging period and we are adapting to be resilient and are resisting the moods of giving up the fight and struggle to surviving.

The 12th century Japanese poet Nokiosuki wrote: “I may have to live to the time as I long for this moment of utmost sadness and recall it tenderly.”

Note:  The subject of this article was inspired by the French book “The gusto for living and one hundred other essays” by Andre Compte-Sponville (2010)


adonis49

adonis49

adonis49

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