Sunday, March 9, 2014

At Play in the Fields of Brazil

Filed under: General,Geometry — Tags: — m759 @ 12:00 PM

From Facebook, a photo from the Feast of St. Francis, 2013:

Neantro Saavedra-Rivano, author of the 1976 paper  “Finite
Geometries in the Theory of Theta Characteristics,”  in Brasilia—

On the same date, art from Inception  and from Diamonds Studio
in Brazil —

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Brazil Revisited

Filed under: General,Geometry — Tags: — m759 @ 12:00 PM

Yesterday's post Treasure Hunt, on a Brazilian weblog,
suggests a review of Brazil  in this journal.  The post
most relevant to yesterday's remarks is from
August 15, 2003, with a link, now broken, to the work
of Brazilian artist Nicole Sigaud* that also uses the
four half-square tiles used in 1704 by Sebastien Truchet 
and somewhat later by myself in Diamond Theory 
(see a 1977 version).

A more recent link that works:






© 1997 – 2002 Nicole Sigaud

* Sigaud shares the interests of her fellow Brazilian
   whose weblog was the subject of yesterday's
   Treasure Hunt.—

   "For many years I have dedicated myself to the study
    of medieval magic, demonology, Kabbalah, Astrology,
    Alchemy, Tarot and divination in general."

     — Nicole Sigaud (translated by Google) in a self-profile: 

    I do not share the interest of these authors in such matters,
    except as they are reflected in the works of authors like
    Charles Williams and Umberto Eco.

Sunday, February 10, 2019

Cold Open

Filed under: General — m759 @ 12:25 PM

The previous post, on the Bauhaus 100th anniversary, suggests a review . . .

"Congratulations to the leaders of both parties:
The past 20 years you’ve taken us far.
We’re entering Weimar, baby."

Peggy Noonan in The Wall Street Journal
   on August 13, 2015

Image from yesterday's Log24 search Bauhaus Space.

Thursday, July 14, 2016

For Spider Woman

Filed under: General — m759 @ 11:19 AM

Film Director Hector Babenco Dies in Brazil

JULY 14, 2016, 10:39 A.M. E.D.T.

SAO PAULO — The Argentine-born Brazilian director
nominated for an Oscar for his 1985 film "Kiss of the
Spider Woman" has died. Hector Babenco was 70.

Denise Winther of Babenco's HB Films says the director
died Wednesday night of a heart attack at Sao Paulo's
Sirio-Libanes Hospital.

See also "Only Connect" and "Tombstones in Her Eyes."

Bono and Taymor at 'Spider-Man'

Click image for a related post.

Friday, December 25, 2015

At Play in the Fields

Filed under: General,Geometry — Tags: — m759 @ 1:00 PM

See Fields of Force  and recent posts.

From PR Newswire  in July 2011 —

Campus Crusade for Christ Adopts New Name: Cru
60-year-old Int'l Ministry Aims to Increase
Relevance and Global Effectiveness

Related material:

Yin + Yang —

Diamond Theory version of 'The Square Inch Space' with yin-yang symbol for comparison

Sunday, February 9, 2014

Green Night

Filed under: General — Tags: — m759 @ 2:56 AM

See “Babbled” in this journal and

Update of 3:15 AM ET —

Suggestions for Terry Gilliam, director of The Zero Theorem  and Brazil —

See posts of April 26, 2013, and of February 2, 2014, as well as
a note from the São Paulo Symphony Orchestra.

Sunday, February 2, 2014

Say It With Flowers

Filed under: General — Tags: — m759 @ 6:30 PM

The title is a reference to the Jan. 4 post "Learning Guide."

Update of 7:59 PM ET Feb. 2 —

"… they entered the apartment together around 11:30 a.m."

— NY Times  today on the discovery of Hoffman's body.

Synchronicity:  Today's 11 AM (ET) Log24 post, as well as
a 2007 Hoffman film involving drugs, jewels, and a planned
​escape to Brazil —

"May you be in heaven a full half-hour
 before the devil knows you're dead ."

Thursday, August 15, 2013

The Crosswicks Curse

Filed under: General — m759 @ 8:23 AM

(Continued from previous posts)

A check of today's date in this journal
ten years ago yields a reference to the
Brazilian artist Athos Bulcão.

It turns out he died on July 31, 2008.
See that date in this journal.

Tuesday, August 6, 2013


Filed under: General — m759 @ 8:15 AM

Continued from August 15, 2012.

IMAGE- 'Diamonds Studio Generative Identity,' an OpenProcessing project from Brazil

This is an OpenProcessing project by Radamés Ajna of Brazil.

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

The Broken Tablet

Filed under: General,Geometry — Tags: — m759 @ 3:33 AM

This post was suggested by a search for the
Derridean phrase "necessary possibility"* that
led to web pages on a conference at Harvard
on Friday and Saturday, March 26**-27, 2010,
on Derrida and Religion .

The conference featured a talk titled
"The Poetics of the Broken Tablet."

I prefer the poetics of projective geometry.

An illustration— The restoration of the full
15-point "large" Desargues configuration in
place of the diminished 10-point Desargues
configuration that is usually discussed.

IMAGE- The proof of the converse of Desargues' theorem involves a third triangle.

Click on the image for further details.

* See a discussion of this phrase in
  the context of Brazilian religion.

** See also my own philosophical reflections
   on Friday, March 26, 2010:
   "You Can't Make This Stuff Up." 

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Conceptual Coffee

Filed under: General — m759 @ 2:01 AM

A related scene, in memory of a jingle singer who died Sunday at 97:

Click for the Heavenly Coffee song.

See also Bleu  and Kiss Club.

"They've got an awful lot of coffee in Brazil."

Sunday, January 27, 2013

Sunday School

Filed under: General — Tags: — m759 @ 9:48 AM

"The newspaper Diario de Santa Maria  reported
that the fire started at around 2 a.m. at the Kiss club
in the city at the southern tip of Brazil, near the borders
with Argentina and Uruguay."  more »

Saturday, January 19, 2013

Executioner’s Song

Filed under: General — m759 @ 12:24 PM

For Terry Gilliam

IMAGE- Ace of Spades in Disney's version of 'Aquarela do Brasil,' uploaded Aug. 13, 2011

See also, from the the above uploading date, Taylor Made,
with its linked-to passage from a book by Charles Taylor.

For some more recent background, see

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Treasure Hunt

Filed under: General,Geometry — Tags: — m759 @ 3:17 PM

The Mathematical Association of America (MAA)
newsmagazine Focus  for December 2012/January 2013: 

The Babylonian tablet on the cover illustrates the
"Mathematical Treasures" article.

A search for related material yields a Babylonian tablet
reproduced in a Brazilian weblog on July 4, 2012:

In that weblog on the same day, July 4, 2012,
another post quotes at length my Diamond Theory page,
starting with the following image from that page—

IMAGE- Plato's Diamond

That Brazilian post recommends use of geometry together
with Tarot and astrology. I do not concur with this 
recommendation, but still appreciate the mention.

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Finis Coronat

Filed under: General — m759 @ 10:25 PM

Brazilian architect Oscar Niemeyer died today at 104.

His "Crown of Thorns" cathedral
appeared here in
some posts of August 2003.

Sunday, March 6, 2011

The Eye

Filed under: General — m759 @ 7:59 AM

In memory of a Brazilian writer who died at 73 on Oscar day— three symbols and a link.

http://www.log24.com/log/pix11/110301-Diamond-RedOnGray.bmp http://www.log24.com/log/pix11/110301-Diamond-RedOnWhite.bmp

Related material—

"I really have nothing to add," "Ojo de Dios," and "Red on Gray."

Friday, September 10, 2010

Only Connect

Filed under: General — m759 @ 5:01 PM

For Julie Taymor on Fashion's Night Out

This morning's post had a link to a video meditation from the director of
the 1985 film "Kiss of the Spider Woman"—

Image-- Plane flying into sun, from 'At Play in the Fields of the Lord'

This film clip is echoed by lyrics, broadcast this morning, from Taymor's new Spider-Man musical—

You can fly too high and get too close to the sun.
See how the boy falls from the sky.

This morning's post and the "At Play" film it linked to featured class conflict and Brazilian natives.

For a more down-to-earth approach to these topics, see Fox Broadcasting's new series "Running Wilde."

Monday, May 17, 2010

Round Midnight

Filed under: General — m759 @ 11:55 PM

A Google search suggested by Dexter Gordon's "Round Midnight" yields…

May 18 update — The Russian link has been replaced by a link to a cached copy of the relevant content.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Tuesday July 28, 2009

Filed under: General — m759 @ 6:00 AM

Four hundredth anniversary of the Sea Venture's shipwreck at Bermuda

The Associated Press this morning —

“Today’s Highlight in History:

On July 28, 1609, the English ship Sea Venture, commanded by Admiral Sir George Somers, ran ashore on Bermuda after nearly foundering at sea during a storm.”

“… the Sea Venture story is two tales in one. There’s the hurricane at sea, and then there is the Bermuda wreck becoming an inspiration for ‘The Tempest.’ The first is one of the most dramatic adventures of the era, and the second is a fascinating detective story.”

Robert Sean Brazil, scholar

“It has been a commonplace in English literary criticism that Shakespeare’s play, ‘The Tempest,’ was modeled on these accounts…. However, this common wisdom is almost certainly a falsity. A monumental error.”
Related material:

Plot summary by “Anonymous” at imdb.com of a feminist film version of “The Tempest” (now in post-production):

“In Julie Taymor’s version of ‘The Tempest,’ the gender of Prospero has been switched to Prospera. Going back to the 16th or 17th century, women practicing the magical arts of alchemy were often convicted of witchcraft.”

Taymor’s “Tempest” stars, as Prospera, the famed portrayer of monarchs Helen Mirren. Another work dealing with alchemy suitable for Mirren (who is also known as Detective Inspector Jane Tennison):

The Eight, by Katherine Neville, is perhaps the greatest bad novel of the twentieth century. If it were made into a movie, who should be cast as the Black Queen? (“…the dignified silver-haired woman danced sinuously…” — p. 241)

'Prime Suspect'-- Helen Mirren as Inspector Tennison

Monday, July 13, 2009

Monday July 13, 2009

Filed under: General — m759 @ 7:00 AM
Sade's Margquee: two album covers and a figure
For those who prefer
 the less tasteful:

Vega’s more recent album

Suzanne Vega, 'Beauty And Crime' album

and this morning’s
 New York Times:

(Click to enlarge.)

NY Times obituaries Monday, July 13, 2009

Note the story on the July 11 death of boxer Arturo Gatti in Brazil, apparently possibly not [updates of July 18 and 30] at the hands of his wife, a former exotic dancer.

Connoisseurs of tasteless prose will appreciate the following:

“Vega writes from a perspective of memory and maturity… applying a musical Brazilian wax to ‘Pornographer’s Dream‘….”

Review of Suzanne Vega’s album “Beauty & Crime” by Don McLeese

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Thursday April 23, 2009

Filed under: General — Tags: — m759 @ 7:22 AM
Theology for Holst

“Timothy J. Holst, who joined the Ringling Brothers and Barnum & Bailey Circus as a lowly Keystone Kops clown, rose to the role of singing ringmaster, and ultimately became the show’s talent czar, died April 16 in São Paulo, Brazil, during a visit to sign up circus acts. He was 61.”

Tiene angel.

Timothy J. Holst, who died April 16, 2009
But seriously…. 

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Tuesday September 30, 2008

Filed under: General — m759 @ 1:14 AM
Hole in the Wall

Loren Eiseley,
Notes of an Alchemist:

I never found
the hole in the wall;
I never found
Pancho Villa country
where you see the enemy first.

— “The Invisible Horseman”

This quotation is the result of
the following meditation:

Part I:

The Feast of St. Michael
and All Angels

On Michaelmas 2008 (yesterday):

The mailman brought next Sunday’s New York Times Book Review. On the last page was an essay by Steven Millhauser, “The Ambition of the Short Story.” It said that…

“The short story concentrates on its grain of sand, in the fierce belief that there– right there, in the palm of its hand– lies the universe. It seeks to know that grain of sand the way a lover seeks to know the face of the beloved.”

Part II:
An Actor’s Lesson

A search for the “grain of sand” phrase in this journal yielded a quotation from actor Will Smith:

“Smith has just finished reading The Alchemist, by the Brazilian writer Paulo Coelho: ‘It says the entire world is contained in one grain of sand, and you can learn everything you need to learn about the entire universe from that one grain of sand. That is the kind of concept I’m teaching my kids.'”

The quotation’s source is The Independent of July 9, 2004.

Part III:
A date with Reba

The date of The Independent‘s story turns out to contain, in this journal, a meditation on white-trash food and Reba McEntire.

(Recall her classic lyric
“I might have been born
just plain white trash,
but Fancy was my name.”)

It also contains the Notes of an Alchemist quotation above.

“Let, then, winged Fancy find
Thee a mistress to thy mind”

— John Keats, “Fancy

A passage closely related to Keats’s poem:

“Fullness… Multitude.”

These are the missing last words of Inman in Cold Mountain, added here on the Feast of St. Luke, 2004.  For the meaning of these words, click on Luke.

Sunday, July 6, 2008

Sunday July 6, 2008

Filed under: General — m759 @ 9:00 PM

"Hancock" Powers to the Top
of July Fourth Box Office

This evening's online
  New York Times

New York Lottery
Sunday, July 6,
Mid-day 307
Evening  921

Log24  3/07:


Three 3x3 symbols of a language game:  the field, the game, checkmate

Log24  9/21:

"The consolations of form,
the clean crystalline work"
— Iris Murdoch, 
"Against Dryness"

Will Smith
on Chess

Will Smith with chessboard

Will Smith

The Independent, 9 July 2004:

"A devoted father, Smith passes on his philosophy of life to his children through chess, among other things.

'My father taught me how to play chess at seven and introduced beautiful concepts that I try to pass on to my kids. The elements and concepts of life are so perfectly illustrated on a chess board. The ability to accurately assess your position is the key to chess, which I also think is the key to life.'

He pauses, searching for an example. 'Everything you do in your life is a move. You wake up in the morning, you strap on a gun, and you walk out on the street– that's a move. You've made a move and the universe is going to respond with its move.

'Whatever move you're going to make in your life to be successful, you have to accurately access the next couple of moves– like what's going to happen if you do this? Because once you've made your move, you can't take it back. The universe is going to respond.'

Smith has just finished reading The Alchemist, by the Brazilian writer Paulo Coelho: 'It says the entire world is contained in one grain of sand, and you can learn everything you need to learn about the entire universe from that one grain of sand. That is the kind of concept I'm teaching my kids.'"

Related material:

"Philosophers' Stone"
and other entries
of June 25, 2008

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Wednesday July 2, 2008

Filed under: General — Tags: — m759 @ 3:33 AM

Sacerdotal Jargon

Wallace Stevens, from
"Credences of Summer" in
Transport to Summer (1947):

"Three times the concentred
     self takes hold, three times
The thrice concentred self,
     having possessed
The object, grips it
     in savage scrutiny…."

In memory of the former
first lady of Brazil,
who died on June 24 —

Emily Dickinson:

Till Summer folds her miracle —
As Women — do — their Gown —
Or Priests — adjust the Symbols —
When Sacrament — is done —

Symbols of the
thrice concentred self:

Symbols of the Thrice Concentred Self

The circular symbol is from July 1.
The square symbol is from June 24,
the date of death for the former
first lady of Brazil.

Wallace Stevens quotes Paul Klee:

"'… what artist would not establish himself there where the organic center of all movement in time and space– which he calls the mind or heart of creation– determines every function.' Conceding that this sounds a bit like sacerdotal jargon, that is not too much to allow…."

— "The Relations between Poetry and Painting" in The Necessary Angel (Knopf, 1951)

Saturday, June 28, 2008

Saturday June 28, 2008

Filed under: General — Tags: — m759 @ 12:00 PM
The God Factor

NY Lottery June 23, 2008: Mid-day 322, Evening 000

The following poem of Emily Dickinson is quoted here in memory of John Watson Foster Dulles, a scholar of Brazilian history who died at 95 on June 23.  He was the eldest son of Secretary of State John Foster Dulles, a nephew of Director of Central Intelligence Allen Dulles, brother of Roman Catholic Cardinal Avery Dulles, and a grandson of Presbyterian minister Allen Macy Dulles, author of The True Church.

I asked no other thing,   
No other was denied.   
I offered Being for it;   
The mighty merchant smiled.   
Brazil? He twirled a button,           
Without a glance my way:   
"But, madam, is there nothing else   
That we can show to-day?"

"He twirled a button…."

Plato's diamond figure from the 'Meno'

The above figure
of Plato
(see 3/22)
was suggested by
Lacan's diamond
Lacan's lozenge - said by some to symbolize Derrida's 'differance'
(losange or poinçon)
as a symbol —
according to Frida Saal
of Derrida's
which is, in turn,
"that which enables and
results from Being itself"
—  according to
Professor John Lye

I prefer Plato and Dulles
to Lacan and Lye.

Thursday, July 26, 2007

Thursday July 26, 2007

Filed under: General — m759 @ 4:00 AM
The Varieties
of Religious Experience

PA Lottery July 25, 2007: Mid-day 057, Evening 225

In memory of
author George Tabori
(see previous entry):


“The author takes the place of the omniscient narrator. He heightens the tension by using striking dialogue. To decrease the tension he uses some light forms of comedy, like the commands for the Dobermans of the little boy: ‘Ketchup’ for retreating, ‘Pickles’ for attacking, and ‘Mustard’ for killing.”

Menno Mertens  
on Ira Levin’s
The Boys from Brazil
George Tabori
Log24 on 2/25, 2007:

“I caught the sudden look
of some dead master….”

— T. S. Eliot, Four Quartets

Thursday, July 19, 2007

Thursday July 19, 2007

Filed under: General — m759 @ 10:31 AM

Volta da Morte:
Friday the 13th

TV listing from Brazil
for Friday, Jan. 13th, 2006:

Veja quais são os melhores filmes

Sexta, 13 de Janeiro

(SBT, 22h30
Hocus Pocus, de Kenny Ortega. Com Bette Midler, Sarah Jessica Parker e Kathy Najimy. EUA, 1993, cor, 102 min. Terror – Dois jovens irmãos, na noite de Halloween, entram na velha casa das bruxas, e sem saber, trazem duas bruxas de volta da morte. Decididas a se tornarem imortais, elas precisarão, para isso, roubar vidas de crianças.

— http://www.jornalonorte.com.br/

Related material:

If Cullinane College
were Hogwarts

Friday the 13th
of January, 2006


Catholic Schools Sermon

Thursday July 19, 2007

Filed under: General — m759 @ 2:00 AM

Death Flight

Lord Voldemort (in French vol de mort meaning “flight of death” or “steals of/in death,” in Portuguese volta da morte meaning “return from death”) made his debut in Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone.

Wikipedia folk etymology; corrected, but may still contain errors.

Related material: Yesterday’s entries and the remarks from Porto Alegre, Brazil, quoted here on January 25, 2005.

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Wednesday July 18, 2007

Filed under: General — m759 @ 6:28 PM

Reuters News Agency,
Wed., July 18, 2007,
3:48 PM EDT

By Mauricio Savarese

SAO PAULO (Reuters) – The flames from Brazil’s worst plane crash were contained around dawn on Wednesday, but the smell of smoke and death wafted over travelers at Sao Paulo’s airport as a reminder of disaster….

The airport resumed flights on an alternate runway.

Despite the deterioration of Brazil’s air safety record over the past year, Guilherme Braghetto, 72, showed little concern for his son, whom he brought to the airport for a flight to Goiania.

‘I feel for those who lost loved ones, but I don’t think lightning so strong will hit twice,’ he said.

On September 29, 2006, a Boeing 737 operated by Brazilian carrier Gol Linhas Aereas Inteligentes crashed after clipping wings with a Legacy business jet over the Amazon rainforest, killing 154 people.


Log24, Sept. 28, 2006

The image “http://www.log24.com/music/images/Keys-Piano.gif” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.

Click on picture for a midi.

“…consonant intervals
as an example of alleged
perceptual universals.’

Related material on universals
suitable for today, the Feast of
St. Michael and All Angels:
Shining Forth….”

The New Yorker, issue dated
July 23, 2007, page 42:

“While out-of-body experiences
have the character of
a perceptual illusion
(albeit a complex and
singular one), near-death
experiences have all the
hallmarks of mystical
experience, as William
James defines it….”

— Oliver Sacks,
A Bolt from the Blue

The New Yorker, issue dated
July 23, 2007, page 70:

IMAGE- Barsotti cartoon, 'You're a good listener'

Wednesday July 18, 2007

Filed under: General — m759 @ 7:03 AM
Burning Bright

“What is real?”
Pope Benedict XVI
in Brazil on May 13

Yesterday in
the Keystone State:

PA Lottery July 17, 2007: Mid-day 853, Evening 856

This suggests– via a search on “853-856” + “universals”– that we consult pages 853-856 in The Library of America’s William James: Writings 1902-1910.

Beginning on page 853 in this book, and ending on page 856, is an excerpt from a James address that the editor has titled…

The Tigers in India

“There are two ways of knowing things, knowing them immediately or intuitively, and knowing them conceptually or representatively.  Altho such things as the white paper before our eyes can be known intuitively, most of the things we know, the tigers now in India, for example, or the scholastic system of philosophy, are known only representatively or symbolically.

Suppose, to fix our ideas, that we take first a case of conceptual knowledge, and let it be our knowledge of the tigers in India, as we sit here.  Exactly what do we mean by saying that we here know the tigers? ….

Most men would answer that what we mean by knowing the tigers is having them, however absent in body, become in some way present to our thought…. At the very least, people would say that what we mean by knowing the tigers is mentally pointing towards them as we sit here….

… The pointing of our thought to the tigers is known simply and solely as a procession of mental associates and motor consequences that follow on the thought, and that would lead harmoniously, if followed out, into some ideal or real context, or even into the immediate presence, of the tigers….

… In all this there is no self-transcendency in our mental images taken by themselves. They are one phenomenal fact; the tigers are another; and their pointing to the tigers is a perfectly commonplace intra-experiential relation, if you once grant a connecting world to be there.  In short, the ideas and the tigers are in themselves as loose and separate, to use Hume’s language, as any two things can be, and pointing means here an operation as external and adventitious as any that nature yields.

I hope you may agree with me now that in representative knowledge there is no special inner mystery, but only an outer chain of physical or mental intermediaries connecting thought and thing. To know an object is here to lead to it through a context which the world supplies….

Let us next pass on to the case of immediate or intuitive acquaintance with an object, and let the object be the white paper before our eyes…. What now do we mean by ‘knowing’ such a sort of object as this?  For this is also the way in which we should know the tiger if our conceptual idea of him were to terminate by having led us to his lair?

… the paper seen and the seeing of it are only two names for one indivisible fact which, properly named, is the datum, the phenomenon, or the experience. The paper is in the mind and the mind is around the paper, because paper and mind are only two names that are given later to the one experience, when, taken in a larger world of which it forms a part, its connections are traced in different directions.1

James, Writings 1902-1910, page 856

The same volume also contains
James’s The Varieties of
Religious Experience.

“The Tigers in India” is
only a part of a 20-page
James address originally titled
The Knowing of Things Together
(my emphasis).

Sunday, May 20, 2007

Sunday May 20, 2007

Filed under: General — m759 @ 7:00 PM
Robert A. Heinlein,
Glory Road:

“Rufo’s baggage turned out
to be a little black box
about the size and shape
of a portable typewriter.
He opened it.
And opened it again.
   And kept on opening it….”
60 Minutes logo

ONE LAPTOP PER CHILD MIT Prof. Nicholas Negroponte’s dream is to put a laptop computer into the hands of every child as an educational aid. Lesley Stahl reports on his progress in Cambodia and Brazil. Catherine Olian is the producer.

Related material:
Log24 entries of 11/18/05

Monday, May 14, 2007

Monday May 14, 2007

Filed under: General — m759 @ 2:22 AM
“What is real?”

— Pope Benedict XVI  
on Sunday in Brazil

“Dare to struggle,
dare to win!”

“Dare to guzzle
Gordon’s gin.”

— dialogue from 
Masks of the Illuminati

Saturday, September 10, 2005

Saturday September 10, 2005

Filed under: General — m759 @ 4:11 AM
Rhythm of the Saints

(Background: the two previous entries.)

The image “http://www.log24.com/log/pix05B/050910-KeysSimon.jpg” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.

Alicia Keys and Paul Simon
on last night’s Katrina telethon

Related material:

Readings for St. Patrick’s Day,
Log24.net, March 17, 2005,
Conrad’s Under Western Eyes.

Reading for the Saints of 9/11,
New York Times of Sunday, 9/11, 2005:
“The True Classic of Terrorism,”
 Conrad’s Under Western Eyes.

And for some comic relief,
Harvard’s President on St. Patrick’s Day:

Professor Matory is “a renowned expert on Brazil and on the Yoruba civilization of West Africa, which is world famous for its religious complexity and artistic creativity. He is equally noted for his study of such Latin American religions as Haitian ‘Vodu,’ Brazilian Candomblé, and Cuban Santería….”

The image “http://www.log24.com/log/pix05/050317-Summers2.jpg” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.

Play that funky music, white boy.

Thursday, March 17, 2005

Thursday March 17, 2005

Filed under: General — m759 @ 12:00 AM

Midnight Drums for Larry

The Harvard Crimson, March 16:

"Voting by secret ballot in a Faculty meeting at the Loeb Drama Center, 218 faculty members affirmed a motion put on the docket by Professor of Anthropology and of African and African American Studies J. Lorand Matory ’82, stating that 'the Faculty lacks confidence in the leadership of Lawrence H. Summers.' "

Harvard Faculty of Arts and Sciences

Professor Matory is "a renowned expert on Brazil and on the Yoruba civilization of West Africa, which is world famous for its religious complexity and artistic creativity. He is equally noted for his study of such Latin American religions as Haitian 'Vodu,' Brazilian Candomblé, and Cuban Santería…."

The image “http://www.log24.com/log/pix05/050317-Summers2.jpg” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.

The Harvard Crimson, January 7, 2005:

"I came here with the goal of dancing with Larry Summers, and I did it," Chinwe U. Nwosu ’08 said. "He’s a great dancer."

"Now I can say that 'Bootylicious' is our song," she added.

"Atabaque – a large tom-tom
that is used in Afro-Brazilian
religious celebrations"

The Sounds of Samba
at Yale

The image “http://www.log24.com/log/pix04B/041016-Atabaque.gif” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.

— From Log24.net, Oct. 16, 2004:

Midnight in the Garden

Tuesday, January 25, 2005

Tuesday January 25, 2005

Filed under: General — Tags: — m759 @ 12:00 PM

Diamonds Are Forever

The image “http://www.log24.com/theory/images/Modal-diamondinbox.gif” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.


Robert Stone,
A Flag for Sunrise:

" 'That old Jew gave me this here.'  Egan looked at the diamond.  'I ain't giving this to you, understand?  The old man gave it to me for my boy.  It's worth a whole lot of money– you can tell that just by looking– but it means something, I think.  It's got a meaning, like.'

'Let's see,' Egan said, 'what would it mean?'  He took hold of Pablo's hand cupping the stone and held his own hand under it.  '"The jewel is in the lotus," perhaps that's what it means.  The eternal in the temporal.  The Boddhisattva declining nirvana out of compassion.   Contemplating the ignorance of you and me, eh?  That's a metaphor of our Buddhist friends.'

Pablo's eyes glazed over.  'Holy shit,' he said.  'Santa Maria.'  He stared at the diamond in his palm with passion.

'Hey,' he said to the priest, 'diamonds are forever!  You heard of that, right?  That means something, don't it?'

'I have heard it,' Egan said.  'Perhaps it has a religious meaning.' "

"We symbolize logical necessity
with the box (box.gif (75 bytes))
and logical possibility
with the diamond (diamond.gif (82 bytes))."

Keith Allen Korcz



Nythamar Fernandes de Oliveira

Pontifical Catholic University
at Porto Alegre, Brazil

"Such is the paradoxical 'encounter' of the eternal with the temporal. Just like the Moment of the Incarnation, when the Eternal entered the temporal, Kierkegaard refers to the category of the Instant (Danish Ojeblikket, 'a glance of the eye, eyeblink,' German Augenblick) as the dialectical kernel of our existential consciousness:

If the instant is posited, so is the eternal –but also the future, which comes again like the past … The concept around which everything turns in Christianity, the concept which makes all things new, is the fullness of time, is the instant as eternity, and yet this eternity is at once the future and the past.

Although I cannot examine here the Kierkegaardian conception of time, the dialectical articulation of time and existence, as can be seen, underlies his entire philosophy of existence, just as the opposition between 'eternity' and 'temporality': the instant, as 'an atom of eternity,' serves to restructure the whole synthesis of selfhood into a spiritual one, in man’s 'ascent' toward its Other and the Unknown. In the last analysis, the Eternal transcends every synthesis between eternity and time, infinity and finiteness, preserving not only the Absolute Paradox in itself but above all the wholly otherness of God. It is only because of the Eternal, therefore, that humans can still hope to attain their ultimate vocation of becoming a Chistian. As Kierkegaard writes in Works of Love (1847),

The possibility of the good is more than possibility, for it is the eternal. This is the basis of the fact that one who hopes can never be deceived, for to hope is to expect the possibility of the good; but the possibility of the good is eternal. …But if there is less love in him, there is also less of the eternal in him; but if there is less of the eternal in him, there is also less possibility, less awareness of possibility (for possibility appears through the temporal movement of the eternal within the eternal in a human being)."

Saturday, October 16, 2004

Saturday October 16, 2004

Filed under: General — Tags: — m759 @ 12:00 AM

Midnight in the Garden

Umberto Eco,
Foucault’s Pendulum,
page 176:

Here, too, you entered through a little garden…

Amparo drew me aside as we went in.  “I’ve figured it out,” she said.  “That tapir at the lecture talked about the Aryan age, remember?  And this one talks about the decline of the West.  Blut und Boden, blood and earth.  It’s pure Nazism.”

“It’s not that simple, darling.  This is a different continent.”….

If the outside was seedy, the inside was a blaze of violent colors.  It was a quadrangular hall, with one area set aside for the dancing of the cavalos.  The altar was at the far end, protected by a railing, against which stood the platform for the drums, the atabaques.  The ritual space was still empty….

Atabaque – a large tom-tom
that is used in Afro-Brazilian
religious celebrations”

The Sounds of Samba
at Yale

 The image “http://www.log24.com/log/pix04B/041016-Atabaque.gif” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.


“Of African origin, and made of jacarandá wood in a conical shape. A calfskin head covers the top of the drum. It is used a lot in capoeria and candomblé and umbanda rituals all over Brazil. There are three kinds of atabaques: Rum, Rumpi, and Lê. Rum has the deepest sound and is a solo drum; Rumpi has a medium sound, and Lê is the highest. These three hold the beat.”

Like the beat, beat, beat of the tom-tom….

— Cole Porter, “Night and Day

Your feats end enormous,
    your volumes immense,
(May the Graces I hoped for
    sing your Ondtship song sense!),
Your genus its worldwide,
    your spacest sublime!
But, Holy Saltmartin,
    why can’t you beat time?

In the name of the former
    and of the latter
    and of their holocaust. Allmen.

Monday, August 30, 2004

Monday August 30, 2004

Filed under: General,Geometry — m759 @ 12:07 PM


A Log24 entry of Aug. 17, 2004, on the
three Semitic (or “Abrahamic”) religions:


From Scotsman.com News
Mon., 30 Aug., 2004
11:43 AM (UK)

Ex-Priest Sentenced
for Disrupting Marathon

By Pat Hurst, PA News, in Athens

An ex-priest who lives in Britain was given a 12-month suspended sentence today for disrupting the men’s Olympic marathon in Athens.

Cornelius Horan, 57, a former Catholic priest living in London, appeared before a Greek judge this morning, local police said.

He was sentenced and released from custody but his whereabouts are unknown.

Irishman Horan, originally from Kerry, dashed from the sidelines to attack the marathon front-runner during yesterday’s event.

He told officers he staged the disruption to “prepare for the second coming”.

A police spokesman said: “He has got mental problems. He is not very well.

“His only explanation for his behaviour was that it was for the second coming.”

Horan also disrupted last year’s Silverstone Formula One Grand Prix by dashing across the track.

Leslie Broad, of Deunant Books, which publishes Mr Horan’s books on its website, said: “We publish two of his books on biblical prophecies and he seems to be fairly convinced that the second coming is due fairly shortly.

“After the incident at Silverstone, he did say he would never do anything like that again.

“He comes across as a shy, very intelligent and compassionate man but as is often the way with people who are very intelligent, it sometimes manifests itself in very strange ways.

“I think he found prison a fairly uplifting experience. He came out feeling that he had met a lot of people he wouldn’t normally have met, people who had committed serious crimes.”

Horan’s victim yesterday, Vanderlei De Lima, from Brazil, was at the head of the race just three miles from the finish.

Horan grabbed him and bundled him into spectators at the side of the road.

After a scuffle, the runner managed to get away, but he was clearly ruffled and finished third.

The Brazilian Olympic Committee put in an official complaint to the Greeks and at one point the final medal ceremony to be staged during the closing ceremony was in doubt.

Horan was arrested and taken to the General Police Division of Attica, where he stayed overnight.

Author biography
Deunant Books:

Father Cornelius (“Neil”) Horan


“Neil Horan was born in 1947, in Scartaglen, County Kerry, in the Republic of Ireland. After schooling in Ireland he was ordained a Catholic Priest in Saint Mary’s Cathedral, Killarney, in 1973.

He has served all his priestly life in the Southwark Diocese, covering London south of the River Thames and Kent, his first Parish being Bexley in Kent. His interest in Bible prophecy began when he attended a lecture in 1974, given by the Apostolic Fellowship of Christ, a group which had originated with the Christadelphians. Meaning ‘Brothers in Christ’, the Christadelphians were a small Church formed in 1861 by Dr John Thomas. Father Horan says he owes a debt of gratitude to the Christadelphian tradition for the understanding of the Bible which they gave him. He regards the Bible as the greatest Book in the world and has devoted his life to making it better known, especially the Prophecies.

He is not a prophet, considering himself to be merely an interpreter, has never received a Divine message or vision, and God has never spoken to him. He feels that he is right only in so far as he interprets the Book of Books correctly.

He is still a Catholic Priest, listed in the Catholic Directory under his full name of Cornelius Horan. Cornelius, a Centurian [sic] in the Roman army, was the first Christian convert; Father Horan is proud to bear that name and hopes to meet his famous namesake soon, when Jesus comes.”

A Glorious New World
by Father Neil Horan

“Are there passages in the Bible that foretell events that were, at the time it was written, far in the future? Father Neil Horan argues eloquently, knowledgeably and persuasively in this book, first published in 1985, that this is so. It is easy to scoff at predictions of events that were, according to the book, to have taken place a few years ago but which have not happened, but to do that would be wrong. With only the most subtle changes of emphasis in interpretation, it could just as easily be argued that events in the Middle East particularly have to a large degree fulfilled the prophecies for the years since 1985.

Then there are the events yet to come. They are, according to the author and his sources, to be the most significant in the history of mankind, and are going to happen soon. With a little thought, certain current-day world figures are a disconcertingly comfortable match for some of the characters who will act out the earth-shattering dramas to come. Even the most hardened cynic will get that prickly feeling down the back of his neck as he reads this book.

Taken together with Father Horan’s later work ‘Christ Will Soon Take Power From All Governments’ (also available from Deunant Books) the two books represent one of the most remarkable and significant bodies of work seen in this field for many, many years.”

Deunant Books on Theology

Ludwig Wittgenstein,
Philosophical Investigations:

373. Grammar tells what kind of object anything is. (Theology as grammar.)

Grammar and Geometry:
The Euclidean Proposition,
by J. B. Calvert:

For more on Wittgenstein, theology, and grammar, see the Log24

entries of Jan. 14, 2004.

Related material:

God Goes Hollywood,
by Jeremiah Cullinane

Monday, September 1, 2003

Monday September 1, 2003

Filed under: General — m759 @ 3:33 PM

The Unity of Mathematics,

or “Shema, Israel”

A conference to honor the 90th birthday (Sept. 2) of Israel Gelfand is currently underway in Cambridge, Massachusetts.

The following note from 2001 gives one view of the conference’s title topic, “The Unity of Mathematics.”

Reciprocity in 2001

by Steven H. Cullinane
(May 30, 2001)

From 2001: A Space Odyssey, by Arthur C. Clarke, New American Library, 1968:

The glimmering rectangular shape that had once seemed no more than a slab of crystal still floated before him….  It encapsulated yet unfathomed secrets of space and time, but some at least he now understood and was able to command.

How obvious — how necessary — was that mathematical ratio of its sides, the quadratic sequence 1: 4: 9!  And how naive to have imagined that the series ended at this point, in only three dimensions!

— Chapter 46, “Transformation”

From a review of Himmelfarb, by Michael Krüger, New York, George Braziller, 1994:

As a diffident, unsure young man, an inexperienced ethnologist, Richard was unable to travel through the Amazonian jungles unaided. His professor at Leipzig, a Nazi Party member (a bigot and a fool), suggested he recruit an experienced guide and companion, but warned him against collaborating with any Communists or Jews, since the objectivity of research would inevitably be tainted by such contact. Unfortunately, the only potential associate Richard can find in Sao Paulo is a man called Leo Himmelfarb, both a Communist (who fought in the Spanish Civil War) and a self-exiled Jew from Galicia, but someone who knows the forests intimately and can speak several of the native dialects.

“… Leo followed the principle of taking and giving, of learning and teaching, of listening and storytelling, in a word: of reciprocity, which I could not even imitate.”

… E. M. Forster famously advised his readers, “Only connect.” “Reciprocity” would be Michael Kruger’s succinct philosophy, with all that the word implies.

— William Boyd, New York Times Book Review, October 30, 1994

Reciprocity and Euler

Applying the above philosophy of reciprocity to the Arthur C. Clarke sequence

1, 4, 9, ….

we obtain the rather more interesting sequence
1/1, 1/4, 1/9, …..

This leads to the following problem (adapted from the St. Andrews biography of Euler):

Perhaps the result that brought Euler the most fame in his young days was his solution of what had become known as the Basel problem. This was to find a closed form for the sum of the infinite series

1/1 + 1/4 + 1/9 + 1/16 + 1/25 + …

— a problem which had defeated many of the top mathematicians including Jacob Bernoulli, Johann Bernoulli and Daniel Bernoulli. The problem had also been studied unsuccessfully by Leibniz, Stirling, de Moivre and others. Euler showed in 1735 that the series sums to (pi squared)/6. He generalized this series, now called zeta(2), to zeta functions of even numbers larger than two.

Related Reading

For four different proofs of Euler’s result, see the inexpensive paperback classic by Konrad Knopp, Theory and Application of Infinite Series (Dover Publications).

Related Websites

Evaluating Zeta(2), by Robin Chapman (PDF article) Fourteen proofs!

Zeta Functions for Undergraduates

The Riemann Zeta Function

Reciprocity Laws
Reciprocity Laws II

The Langlands Program

Recent Progress on the Langlands Conjectures

For more on
the theme of unity,

Monolithic Form

Monday, August 18, 2003

Monday August 18, 2003

Filed under: General,Geometry — Tags: — m759 @ 3:09 PM

Entries since Xanga’s
August 10 Failure:

Sunday, August 17, 2003  2:00 PM

A Thorny Crown of…

West Wing's Toby Ziegler

From the first episode of
the television series
The West Wing“:


Original airdate: Sept. 22, 1999
Written by Aaron Sorkin

That New York sense of humor. It always–

Mary, there’s absolutely no need…

Please, Reverend, they think they’re so much smarter. They think it’s smart talk. But nobody else does.

I’m actually from Connecticut, but that’s neither here nor there. The point is that I hope…

She meant Jewish.

[A stunned silence. Everyone stares at Toby.]

When she said “New York sense of humor,” she was talking about you and me.

You know what, Toby, let’s just not even go there.


Going There, Part I


Crown of Ideas

Kirk Varnedoe, 57, art historian and former curator of the Museum of Modern Art, died Thursday, August 14, 2003.

From his New York Times obituary:

” ‘He loved life in its most tangible forms, and so for him art was as physical and pleasurable as being knocked down by a wave,’ said Adam Gopnik, the writer and a former student of his who collaborated on Mr. Varnedoe’s first big show at the Modern, ‘High & Low.’ ‘Art was always material first — it was never, ever bound by a thorny crown of ideas.’ ”

For a mini-exhibit of ideas in honor of Varnedoe, see

Fahne Hoch.

Verlyn Klinkenborg on Varnedoe:

“I was always struck by the tangibility of the words he used….  It was as if he were laying words down on the table one by one as he used them, like brushes in an artist’s studio. That was why students crowded into his classes and why the National Gallery of Art had overflow audiences for his Mellon Lectures earlier this year. Something synaptic happened when you listened to Kirk Varnedoe, and, remarkably, something synaptic happened when he listened to you. You never knew what you might discover together.”

Perhaps even a “thorny crown of ideas“?

“Crown of Thorns”
Cathedral, Brasilia

Varnedoe’s death coincided with
the Great Blackout of 2003.

“To what extent does this idea of a civic life produced by sense of adversity correspond to actual life in Brasília? I wonder if it is something which the city actually cultivates. Consider, for example the cathedral, on the monumental axis, a circular, concrete framed building whose sixteen ribs are both structural and symbolic, making a structure that reads unambiguously as a crown of thorns; other symbolic elements include the subterranean entrance, the visitor passing through a subterranean passage before emerging in the light of the body of the cathedral. And it is light, shockingly so….”

Modernist Civic Space: The Case of Brasilia, by Richard J. Williams, Department of History of Art, University of Edinburgh, Scotland


Going There, Part II

Simple, Bold, Clear

Art historian Kirk Varnedoe was, of course, not the only one to die on the day of the Great Blackout.

Claude Martel, 34, a senior art director of The New York Times Magazine, also died on Thursday, August 14, 2003.

Janet Froelich, the magazine’s art director, describes below a sample of work that she and Martel did together:

“A new world of ideas”

Froelich notes that “the elements are simple, bold, and clear.”

For another example of elements with these qualities, see my journal entry

Fahne Hoch.

The flag design in that entry
might appeal to Aaron Sorkin’s
Christian antisemite:


S. H. Cullinane,
Aug. 15, 2003

Dr. Mengele,
according to


Note that the elements of the flag design have the qualities described so aptly by Froelich– simplicity, boldness, clarity:

They share these qualities with the Elements of Euclid, a treatise on geometrical ideas.

For the manner in which such concepts might serve as, in Gopnik’s memorable phrase, a “thorny crown of ideas,” see

“Geometry for Jews” in

ART WARS: Geometry as Conceptual Art.

See also the discussion of ideas in my journal entry on theology and art titled

Understanding: On Death and Truth

and the discussion of the wordidea” (as well as the word, and the concept, “Aryan”) in the following classic (introduced by poet W. H. Auden):



Saturday, August 16, 2003  6:00 AM

Varnedoe’s Crown

Kirk Varnedoe, 57, art historian and former curator of the Museum of Modern Art, died Thursday, August 14, 2003.

From his New York Times obituary:

” ‘He loved life in its most tangible forms, and so for him art was as physical and pleasurable as being knocked down by a wave,’ said Adam Gopnik, the writer and a former student of his who collaborated on Mr. Varnedoe’s first big show at the Modern, ‘High & Low.’ ‘Art was always material first — it was never, ever bound by a thorny crown of ideas.’ “

For a mini-exhibit of ideas in honor of Varnedoe, see

Fahne Hoch. 

Verlyn Klinkenborg on Varnedoe:

“I was always struck by the tangibility of the words he used….  It was as if he were laying words down on the table one by one as he used them, like brushes in an artist’s studio. That was why students crowded into his classes and why the National Gallery of Art had overflow audiences for his Mellon Lectures earlier this year. Something synaptic happened when you listened to Kirk Varnedoe, and, remarkably, something synaptic happened when he listened to you. You never knew what you might discover together.”

Perhaps even a “thorny crown of ideas”?

“Crown of Thorns”
Cathedral, Brasilia

Varnedoe’s death coincided with
the Great Blackout of 2003.

“To what extent does this idea of a civic life produced by sense of adversity correspond to actual life in Brasília? I wonder if it is something which the city actually cultivates. Consider, for example the cathedral, on the monumental axis, a circular, concrete framed building whose sixteen ribs are both structural and symbolic, making a structure that reads unambiguously as a crown of thorns; other symbolic elements include the subterranean entrance, the visitor passing through a subterranean passage before emerging in the light of the body of the cathedral. And it is light, shockingly so….”

Modernist Civic Space: The Case of Brasilia, by Richard J. Williams, Department of History of Art, University of Edinburgh, Scotland

Friday, August 15, 2003  3:30 PM


The Boys from Brazil

It turns out that the elementary half-square designs used in Diamond Theory


also appear in the work of artist Nicole Sigaud.

Sigaud’s website The ANACOM Project  has a page that leads to the artist Athos Bulcão, famous for his work in Brasilia.

From the document

Conceptual Art in an
Authoritarian Political Context:
Brasilia, Brazil

by Angélica Madeira:

“Athos created unique visual plans, tiles of high poetic significance, icons inseparable from the city.”

As Sigaud notes, two-color diagonally-divided squares play a large part in the art of Bulcão.

The title of Madeira’s article, and the remarks of Anna Chave on the relationship of conceptual/minimalist art to fascist rhetoric (see my May 9, 2003, entries), suggest possible illustrations for a more politicized version of Diamond Theory:


S. H. Cullinane,
Aug. 15, 2003

Dr. Mengele,
according to


Is it safe?

These illustrations were suggested in part by the fact that today is the anniversary of the death of Macbeth, King of Scotland, and in part by the following illustrations from my journal entries of July 13, 2003 comparing a MOMA curator to Lady Macbeth:


Die Fahne Hoch,
Frank Stella,

Dorothy Miller,
MOMA curator,
died at 99 on
July 11, 2003


Thursday, August 14, 2003  3:45 AM

Famous Last Words

The ending of an Aug. 14 Salon.com article on Mel Gibson’s new film, “The Passion”:

” ‘The Passion’ will most likely offer up the familiar puerile, stereotypical view of the evil Jew calling for Jesus’ blood and the clueless Pilate begging him to reconsider. It is a view guaranteed to stir anew the passions of the rabid Christian, and one that will send the Jews scurrying back to the dark corners of history.”

— Christopher Orlet

“Scurrying”?!  The ghost of Joseph Goebbels, who famously portrayed Jews as sewer rats doing just that, must be laughing — perhaps along with the ghost of Lady Diana Mosley (née Mitford), who died Monday.

This goes well with a story that Orlet tells at his website:

“… to me, the most genuine last words are those that arise naturally from the moment, such as


Joseph Goebbels


Voltaire’s response to a request that he foreswear Satan: ‘This is no time to make new enemies.’ ”

For a view of Satan as an old, familiar, acquaintance, see the link to Prince Ombra in my entry last October 29 for Goebbels’s birthday.

Wednesday, August 13, 2003  3:00 PM

Best Picture

For some reflections inspired in part by

click here.

Tuesday, August 12, 2003  4:44 PM


A sequel to my entry “Catholic Tastes” of July 27, 2003.

Some remarks of Wallace Stevens that seem appropriate on this date:

“It may be that one life is a punishment
For another, as the son’s life for the father’s.”

—  Esthétique du Mal, Wallace Stevens

Joseph Patrick Kennedy, Jr.

“Unless we believe in the hero, what is there
To believe? ….
Devise, devise, and make him of winter’s
Iciest core, a north star, central
In our oblivion, of summer’s
Imagination, the golden rescue:
The bread and wine of the mind….”

Examination of the Hero in a Time of War, Wallace Stevens

Etymology of “Atonement”:

Middle English atonen, to be reconciled, from at one, in agreement

At One

“… We found,
If we found the central evil, the central good….
… we and the diamond globe at last were one.”

Asides on the Oboe, Wallace Stevens

Tuesday, August 12, 2003  1:52 PM

Franken & ‘Stein,
Attorneys at Law

Tue August 12, 2003 04:10 AM ET
NEW YORK (Reuters) – Fox News Network is suing humor writer Al Franken for trademark infringement over the phrase ‘fair and balanced’ on the cover of his upcoming book, saying it has been ‘a signature slogan’ of the network since 1996.”



For answers, click on the pictures
of Franken and ‘Stein.

Saturday, September 7, 2002

Saturday September 7, 2002

Filed under: General — m759 @ 4:44 PM

The Boys from Uruguay

If one were to write a “secret history” of the twentieth century, one possible organizing theme might be the religious struggle between worshippers of the Semitic deity (variously known as Yahweh, God, and Allah) and worshippers of the Aryan deities… notably, the Aryan god of music, light, and reason, Apollo.

(See my jounal notes of Monday, Sept. 2, 2002, below.)

In perhaps the best academic website I have ever seen, Karey L. Perkins quotes Walker Percy:

“The truth is that man’s capacity for symbol-mongering in general and language in particular is…intimately part and parcel of his being human, of his perceiving and knowing, of his very consciousness…”

The greatest symbol-monger of the twentieth century was, of course, Adolf Hitler. His use of the Aryan sun-wheel symbol rose to the level of genius. Of course, it ultimately failed to win the approval of the sun god himself, Apollo, who is also the god of reason.

Since symbol-mongering cannot be avoided, let us hope that it can be done in a somewhat more reasonable way than that of the National Socialist movement. Two examples suggest themselves.

  1. From Peggy Noonan’s column of Friday, Sept. 6:

    The cross, the heart, and the flag.

  2. From Karey Perkins’s website:

    A brain, a heart, and courage

On this Rosh Hashanah, the cross as a symbol of intelligence may be offensive to some worshippers of Yahweh. Let them read The Archivist, a novel by Martha Cooley, and then my journal note The Matthias Defense.

They might also contemplate the biblical quotation in the musical “Contact” broadcast from Lincoln Center on September 1, 2002: “Let there be light!”

Three Jews named Paul have been associated with light…

  1. Saul of Tarsus, who later assumed an alias.

  2. Paul Newman, whose performance in “The Verdict” continues, indirectly, to trouble Cardinal Law of Boston.

  3. Paul R. Halmos, a personal hero of mine ever since I saw his Finite Dimensional Vector Spaces and Measure Theory as an ignorant young undergraduate browsing the bookstores of Harvard Square.

In accordance with the “secret history” theme mentioned above, the struggle between Aryan and Semitic religions may also be viewed in the light of the struggle between Christianity and Communism. Hitler exploited this viewpoint very successfully, pretending to be the champion of the Christians against the godless Reds. Peggy Noonan also successfully uses this strategy. Both Hitler and Noonan manage to ignore the fact that Christianity is itself one of the Semitic religions, and that at least two of its three deities are Jewish.

As for me, I rather identify with the young Hitler clone at the end of the film “The Boys from Brazil.” Forced to decide between Gregory Peck and Sir Laurence Olivier, he sides with Olivier. His reason? Peck lied.

In a similar situation, forced to decide between Peggy Noonan and the Jew Halmos, I would probably side with Halmos. Halmos, who should, if not a saint, be at least dubbed a knight, does not, unlike the great majority of the damned human race, lie.

See Halmos’s memoir, I Want to Be a Mathematician. In particular, see the single index entry “communist by allegation” and the 29 entries under “Uruguay.”

Happy birthday to Elia Kazan and Peggy Noonan, and a happy and prosperous New Year to should-be-Sir Paul R. Halmos. 

Monday, September 2, 2002

Monday September 2, 2002

Filed under: General — m759 @ 6:56 PM

Today’s birthday: Laurindo Almeida

Almeida was a Brazilian guitarist, composer, and arranger. He was one of the pioneers of the bossa nova style. Although he did not write the song ” Manha de Carnaval” (“A day in the life of a fool”), I added this song as background music for this site today partly to honor Brazilian music… and partly because the song is from the classic Brazilian film “Black Orpheus.” (See the two notes below, from today and yesterday, on Orpheus and on vibraphonist Lionel Hampton.)

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