19 August 2010

The Bible in E-Prime!

9 Elul - Year 5770

Someone (well, Dr. David F. Maas, actually) finally got round to translating the 'good book' into E-Prime.

For those who've never heard of E-Prime, it "is" essentially a form of English where the verb 'to be' (is, was, etc.) gets eliminated, in favour of verbs which relate to the speaker's point of view and not necessarily a concrete fact.

An example: "John is a real jerk." This implies that everyone sees John as a real jerk. One of his friends may disagree and an argument will ensue. If I state that in E-Prime...it becomes "John seems like a jerk, to me." Now, his friend may still argue - but the E-Prime statement becomes one of subjective content, not of 'objective fact'. Some (but not all) critters will hopefully begin to see that they state most things as if everyone shares the same reality-tunnel, which doesn't seem to be the case, to me. I'd like to say most critters would, but sadly, human evolution doesn't appear to be moving as quickly as I would like it to.

You can read more about E-Prime here and here. Those serve as better 'primers' (pardon the pun) than my little intro.

The E-Prime version of the Bible can be found here.

And finally, a Robert Anton Wilson vid all about E-Prime:

Thanks to Mindy J. for posting the Bible link over at Only Maybe.

11 August 2010

Greying Boomers...or my mom is 70!

29 July, 2010 (Julian calendar)

It was my mother's birthday yesterday. I think she's 70 now....I know, how utterly bizarre. She tried to hide her birth year from us, but my older sister and I once found what we thought was a birth certificate. It had '1940' written on it.

I'm reminded of that Simon and Garfunkel lyric: "How very strange, to be seventy." I suppose it's not just my mom, though - it's that whole boomer generation growing old. I like a lot of the 1960s and 70s bands and artists and we're all watching them go grey and leave the planet. In the next ten years, most of them will probably be gone. The rest of that generation will be retiring--it'll be a greying planet. Even us "Gen X-ers" (or whatever we're called now) are aging fast.

The boomers had a chance to really change the planet for better. Did they succeed? Yes and no. Many of them sold out their youthful ideals for the comfy life, making money and carrying on exactly as their parents had - only with much more convenience and better health. Some of them remained faithful, but seem a bit backward-looking by not completely changing with the times. Still, some great things coalesced from the turmoil of the 1960s and early 1970s: the ecology movement, the potential of psychedelics for healing, mis-trust of most authority figures, the women's, civil and gay rights movements...and some amazing music!

One wonders how the world would differ from now, if they had kept striving and didn't give up at the end of the 1970s...when the tide turned against them. Did they 'allow' Reagan and Thatcher to gain power...or would that have happened anyway?

Most of the well-known boomer icons have gone now: Lennon, Jones, Hendrix, Joplin, Morrison, Harrison, Barrett, Leary (o.k., he wasn't of their generation - but a boomer icon none the less), Hoffman, the Kennedys, Garcia...and on and on. I suppose most of the 'magic' left with them and the centre couldn't hold.

Anyway, here's to them - some of them may be self-induglent and egomaniacal about their contributions to this boondocks planet, but for a time, they didn't march to the tune of monotonous 'society'. Oh..and "Happy Birthday, Mom!"