Thinking About What I’m Thinking About

3 03 2011

Meta-minded JJ.

Snook just rolled to a pattern-perfect round number: 444,000 hits. It looks so neatly ordered that I might just leave the front page up without refreshing, until I get tired of seeing it.

Last night I passed this place again. A dozen serious young students in white, and I noticed how tall and slender yet well-proportioned, uniform in physique as well as, well, uniform!

Did they self-select into something that suited their body type in the first place, or did this activity affect how they grew and developed, making them better in such predictable ways that after the fact, it seemed they were born to it?

Which came first, I mused. The kickin’ or the edge? [groan]

And does that answer, whatever it may be, apply to our politics and religion, what attracts and repels us in life as we wind up living it, fashions and friends and mates and careers?

Everything is connected including this distracted and distracting brain-dump of a post. I’ve been hacking my head off for a week and it’s wearing on other parts of my body now. With every coughing fit, my lower back twinges; my abdomen feels like it’s herniating; my throat rasps and stings; my brain pounds inside my cranium; my ears ring and I can hear blood rushing inside. Plus the coughing has kept me up so many nights now that my eyes are red and bleary, my joie de vivre and general hygiene sinking toward apathy. I see and understand yet am helpless to resist . . .

.

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5 responses

3 03 2011
JJ

😀
Gotta love this story:

The Old Testament will have a new look in the next edition of the New American Bible, one of the most popular English-language Bibles. And it’ll also have some big changes — in many cases, words like “booty” and “virgin” are removed in the new translation.

Scholars translating from ancient Hebrew and Greek for the new Bible decided that the meaning of those words had shifted in the 40 years since the Old Testament was last updated in the New American Bible.

Here are some of the swaps included in the new Bible:

* “booty” is now “spoils of war” — for presumably obvious reasons.
* “virgin” becomes “young woman” — especially where the original uses the Hebrew word “almah.”
* “holocaust” will become “burnt offerings” – scholars say that was closer to the original meaning, before “holocaust” came to be identified with the genocide of World War II.
* “cereal”— now co-opted by General Mills and Post, becomes “grain.”

3 03 2011
JJ

How is it that biblical scholars can recognize our words change significantly in a mere 40 years and act to remedy it, yet after a couple of millennia, some are adamant that nothing has changed at all??

3 03 2011
Nance Confer

{{{{}}}} Feel better.

Nance (wondering who will bother to interpret what I “intended” by this post hundreds of years from now — a Biblical scholar, a Constitutional scholar? who can say? who will care? 🙂 )

3 03 2011
JJ

You know Favorite Daughter is about to graduate summa cum laude and Phi Beta Kappa, with religious studies as one of her double majors. I was telling her this news when I picked her up from campus today and took her to lunch. So we’re sitting at the bar at Chili’s with all the tv screens showing NASCAR except the one on FOX, and she’s giving me a scholarly but animated treatise on how the Koran doesn’t have such difficulties, because it was written in Arabic to begin with and Allah is more clearly not male or female or humanlike at all . . .
😉

3 03 2011
JJ

She also had a whole riff on what’s going on in the middle eastern people’s protests. She said Islam is the youngest of the Abrahamic religions (I thought it was the oldest, shows how little I know about some things) and that as religions get older culturally by hundreds of years, the eventually go through a sort of “middle age” crisis. That the Jewish people had it first, then Christianity/Catholicism and now the Muslims. And that on the other side of that crisis, religious tradition settles down and becomes more secular, less literalistic and fraught . . . more expansive, like our memes for people, I guess. Religions progress, just really slowly — although every so often, a wacko backlash primitivism rises up and demands the culture regress, causing all sorts of grief. ( Jacques Barzun wrote about that, I remember.)

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