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'And he said to his father, "I have served you all these years, and never broke your commandment, yet you never gave me so much as a kid that I might make merry with my friends. But as soon as this, your son, comes home, who devoured your money with harlots, you have killed the fatted calf for him."

The father said, "Son, you are always with me, and all I have is your's. It was right for us to rejoice, for your brother was dead and is alive again, was lost and now is found." '
Luke 15:29-32

The parable of the prodigal son is not about that son. This parable is in the same context as that of the one lost sheep and the one lost piece of silver. It must be seen in the light of, 'And the Pharisees and scribes murmured, saying, This man receives sinners and eats with them.'

Jesus spoke this parable to them, the elder brother who was angry and would not come in to the feast, who did not rejoice that the sinners the Pharisees despised were returning to the Kingdom. We included this quote to remind those in the Church that our purpose in this life is to serve as tools of love to the prodigals.

 


"I am a poet, and what is the mission of a poet? It is to throw himself among the throng of the wretched, share their pains, groan with them, say in their stead to the world what their suffering is like, and expose the root cause of all the evils that are chewing them up. He is also required to undertake the arduous climb to the mountaintop to see a blessed future that lies ahead, and tell those in despair what he has seen."
Kim Chi Ha, to the judge at his trial

The quote from Kim Chi Ha is the best definition of art I have yet found, and serves as a sort of outline for the entire album series. The Quest To Be Whole begins "among the throng of the wretched" and moves to the "blessed future that lies ahead".

 


"A lively and vivid conscience is also the only thing that enables man to resist the effects of the existential vacuum, namely, conformism and totalitarianism."
Viktor Frankl

 


'The Kingdom of Heaven is like a man who sowed good seed in his field. But while men slept, his enemy came and sowed tares among the wheat then went his way. When the wheat sprouted, the tares also appeared.

The householder's servants came and said, "Sir, did you not sow good seed in your field? Where then did these tares come from?"

He said, "An enemy has done this."

The servants said, "Do you want us to pull them up?"

But he said, "No, lest while gathering up the tares you root up the wheat too. Let both grow together until the harvest. Then I will tell the reapers to gather the tares together first and bind them into bundles and burn them, but to gather the wheat into my barn." '
Matthew 13:24-30

The parable of the wheat and tares is included here as a view on the double-edged sword of freedom. The rain and good soil nourished wheat and tares alike. Censorship is like the servants who wanted to pull up the tares. But the master was not willing to uproot even a little wheat in order to remove the tares. Clearly he had faith that the wheat would be able to compete with the tares, else he would not have expected there to be any wheat to eventually harvest.

Calls for uprooting the evil messages of the world I believe to be misdirected. Rather, we should be concentrating on out competing these tares, of maximizing our harvest despite such opposition. Do we believe our message is strong enough to survive and even thrive despite the tares? Or do we believe we should uproot some wheat in order to attack the tares?

 


"The latent causes of faction are thus sown in the nature of man; and we see them everywhere brought into different degrees of activity, according to the different circumstances of civil society. A zeal for different opinions concerning religion, concerning government, and many other points, as well of speculation as of practice; an attachment to different leaders ambitiously contending for pre-eminence and power; or to persons of other descriptions whose fortunes have been interesting to the human passions, have, in turn, divided mankind into parties, inflamed them with mutual animosity, and rendered them much more disposed to vex and oppress each other than to co-operate for their common good.

So strong is this propensity of mankind to fall into mutual animosities, that where no substantial occasion presents itself, the most frivolous and fanciful distinctions have been sufficient to kindle their unfriendly passions and excite their most violent conflicts."
The Federalist Number Ten, (James Madison)

Federalist Number Ten is in many ways the anthem of the U.S. Constitution. The Founding Fathers did not believe humanity was at its core good and noble, and that people cooperate naturally. The entire design of the U.S. government is to set greedy power-hungry people against one another so that they hold each other in check. They knew 'benevolent despot' is an oxymoron.

 


"Look at the worldly and all who set themselves above the people of God. Has not God's image and His Truth been distorted in them? They have science, but in science there is nothing but what is the object of sense. The spiritual world, the higher part of man's being is rejected altogether, dismissed with a sort of triumph, even hatred. The world has proclaimed the reign of freedom, especially of late, but what do we see in this freedom of their's? Nothing but slavery and self-destruction! "

"For the world says, 'You have desires, so satisfy them, for you have the same rights as the most rich and powerful. Don't be afraid of satisfying them, and even multiplying your desires.' "

"That is the modern doctrine of the world. In that they see freedom. And what follows from this right of multiplication? In the rich, isolation and spiritual suicide. In the poor, envy and murder; for they have been given rights, but have not been shown the means of satisfying their wants. They maintain that the world is getting more and more united, more and more bound together in brotherly community as it overcomes distances and sets thoughts flying through the air. Alas, put no faith in such a bond of union. Interpreting freedom as the rapid multiplication and satisfaction of desires, men distort their own natures, for many foolish senseless ridiculous desires are fostered in them."
Fyodor Dostoyevsky

It continues to astound me that the best description I have yet found of our modern society of addiction and greed was written over one hundred years ago.

 


"Though they knew something of what they wanted, they knew nothing of how to accomplish it...."
Edward Bellamy

 


"Or whether the worst enemies of civilization might not prove to be it's petted intellectuals who attacked it at it's weakest moments - attacked it in the name of proletarian revolution, in the name of reason, and in the name of irrationality, in the name of visceral depth, in the name of sex, in the name of perfect instantaneous freedom. For what it amounted to was limitless demand - insatiability, refusal of the doomed creature (death being sure and final) to go away from this earth unsatisfied. A full bill of demand and complaint was therefore presented by each individual. Non-negotiable. Recognizing no scarcity of supply in any human department. Enlightenment? Marvelous! But out of hand, wasn't it?"
Saul Bellow

And roughly ninety years later, the Right of Multiplication is not merely a doctrine, but an entrenched way of life.

 


"The peculiar evil of silencing the expression of an opinion is that it is robbing the human race; posterity as well as the existing generation; those who dissent from the opinion still more than those who hold it. If the opinion is right, they are deprived of the opportunity of exchanging error for truth; if wrong, they lose, what is almost as great a benefit, the clearer perception and livelier impression of the truth, produced by it's collision with error."
John Stuart Mill

See the essay on Specific Disagreement.

 


"What we term a long poem is, in fact, merely a succession of brief ones - that is to say, of brief poetic effects. It is needless to demonstrate that a poem is such only inasmuch as it intensely excites, by elevating the soul; and all intense excitements are, through psychal necessity, brief. For this reason, at least one half of 'Paradise Lost' is essentially prose - a succession of poetical excitements interspersed, inevitably, with corresponding depressions - the whole being deprived, through the extremeness of it's length, of the vastly important artistic element, totality or unity of effect."
Edgar A. Poe

In structuring the band as we have done, we allow the rest of the website to replace the virtual prose 'connecting' passages, hopefully increasing the totality of effect without entirely sacrificing scope.

 


BIBLIOGRAPHY

The Holy Bible

Mortimer J. Adler (1902-2001)
How To Read A Book (1940)

Edward Bellamy (1850-1898)
Looking Backward (1888)

Saul Bellow (1915-2005)
Herzog (1961)
Mr. Sammler's Planet (1970)
Ravelstein (2000)

Stephen L. Carter (1954-living)
The Culture of Disbelief (1994)

Paul Yonggi Cho (1936-living )
Daniel (1990)

Joseph Conrad (1857-1924)
Heart of Darkness (1902)

Fyodor Dostoevsky (1821-1881)
The Brothers Karamazov (1880)

Viktor Frankl (1905-1997)
Man's Search For Meaning (1946)
The Will to Meaning: The Foundations and Applications of Logotherapy (1970)

Alexander Hamilton (1757-1804)
John Jay (1745-1829)
James Madison (1751-1836)
Federalist Papers (1787-1789)

John Hersey (1914-1993)
Hiroshima (1946)

Aldous Huxley (1894-1963)
Brave New World (1932)

Daniel Keyes (1927-2014)
Flowers For Algernon (1966)

Niccolo Machiavelli (1469-1527)
The Prince (1513)

The Manhattan Engineer District (June 29, 1946)
The Atomic Bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki (1946)

Thomas Mann (1875-1955)
The Magic Mountain (1924)

Herman Melville (1819-1891)
Moby Dick (1851)
Pierre (1852)

John Stuart Mill (1806-1873)
On Liberty (1854)

Friedrich Nietzsche (1844-1900)
Thus Spake Zarathustra (1892)

George Orwell (1903-1950)
Keep The Aspidistra Flying (1936)
1984 (1949)
Animal Farm (1945)

Gordon Parks (1912-2006)
The Learning Tree (1964)

Marcel Proust (1870-1922)
Swann's Way (1907-1919)

Ayn Rand (1905-1982)
Atlas Shrugged (1957)

William Shakespeare (1564-1616)
MacBeth (1606)

Upton Sinclair (1878-1968)
The Jungle (1906)

Adam Smith (1723-1790)
Inquiry Into The Nature and Causes of The Wealth of Nations (1776)

Hilton Sutton (1924-2012)
Revelation: God's Grand Finale (1984)
ISBN-13: 978-0892742981

Henry David Thoreau (1817-1862)
Civil Disobediance (1849)
Walden (1854)

Alexis De Tocqueville (1805-1859)
Democracy In America (1835-1840)

J.R.R. Tolkien (1892-1973)
The Hobbit (1937)

Oscar Wilde  (1854-1900)
The Picture of Dorian Gray (1891)

 


The American Experience
The Donner Party, documentary shown on PBS.

United States Library of Congress
Vietnam Memorial Page

United States Holocaust Museum

Simon Wiesenthal Center and Museum of Tolerance

Yad Vashem

 


"Truth indeed came once into the world with her divine Master, and was a perfect shape most glorious to look on: but when he ascended, and his Apostles after him were laid asleep, then straight arose a wicked race of deceivers, who, as that story goes of the Egyptian Typhon with his conspirators, how they dealt with the good Osiris, took the virgin Truth, hewed her lovely form into a thousand pieces, and scattered them to the four winds."

"From that time ever since, the sad friends of Truth, such as durst appear, imitating the careful search that Isis made for the mangled body of Osiris, went up and down gathering up limb by limb, still as they could find them. We have not yet found them all, Lords and Commons, nor ever shall do, till her Master's second coming; he shall bring together every joint and member, and shall mould them into an immortal feature of loveliness and perfection."
John Milton

Truth came indeed, but the dismemberment occurred before I was born.  So my initial experience is with evil.
Predator

 
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