Movie: “The Story of Ruth”

The Story of Ruth is a 1960 American historical romance film directed by Henry Koster, shot in CinemaScope and DeLuxe Color, and released by 20th Century Fox. The screenplay, written by Norman Corwin, is an adaptation of the biblical Book of Ruth. The film stars Stuart Whitman as BoazTom Tryon as MahlonPeggy Wood as NaomiViveca Lindfors as Eleilat, Jeff Morrow as Tob, and introduces 19-year old Elana Eden as Ruth.

Plot

The first part of the film revolves around Ruth, visualized as a pagan idolatress in her youth who serves as the spiritual teacher of a young Moabitess girl, Tebah, who is being prepared to be sacrificed to Chemosh, a Moabite deity. Unhappy with the ritual crown created for Tebah, high-priestess Eleilat, along with Ruth, instruct Mahlon, the Judean artisan, to revamp the crown with jewels and glitter. Mahlon delivers the crown to Ruth at the temple, and he begins to question her about the existence of Chemosh. Ruth becomes doubtful of her religion and ultimately falls in love with Mahlon, sharing an interest in monotheism.

The non-biblical part ends with the sight of the Moabite girl being sacrificed, from which a distressed Ruth flees. The Moabites condemn Mahlon, his father Elimelech, and brother Chilion. Chilion and Elimelech die in the prison, while Mahlon’s punishment is to work at the quarries for the rest of his life. Ruth, however, attempts to escape with Mahlon, but he is wounded before he flees the quarries and dies in a cave afterwards, marrying Ruth just prior to his death.

The biblical storyline begins as Naomi (who was married to Elimelech), Orpah (who was married to Chilion), and Ruth are widowed. The second part is based more on the Book of Ruth, although a subplot is added, that of the Bethlehemites‘ initial disapproval of Ruth’s pagan past and Naomi’s closest kinsman rejecting Ruth as his wife. As the next of kin after him, Boaz successfully obtains Ruth’s hand in marriage. As the film concludes, the final verses of the Book of Ruth are quoted.

More at:  https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Story_of_Ruth

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Biography: George Berkeley

Biography: George Berkeley (12 March 1685 – 14 January 1753) — known as Bishop Berkeley (Bishop of Cloyne) — was an Irish philosopher whose primary achievement was the advancement of a theory he called “immaterialism” (later referred to as “subjective idealism” by others). This theory denies the existence of material substance and instead contends that familiar objects like tables and chairs are only ideas in the minds of perceivers and, as a result, cannot exist without being perceived. Berkeley is also known for his critique of abstraction, an important premise in his argument for immaterialism. Berkeley College, one of Yale University’s 14 residential colleges, is named after George Berkeley. In 1709, Berkeley published his first major work, An Essay towards a New Theory of Vision, in which he discussed the limitations of human vision and advanced the theory that the proper objects of sight are not material objects, but light and colour.[3] This foreshadowed his chief philosophical work, A Treatise Concerning the Principles of Human Knowledge, in 1710, which, after its poor reception, he rewrote in dialogue form and published under the title Three Dialogues between Hylas and Philonous in 1713.[4] In this book, Berkeley’s views were represented by Philonous (Greek: “lover of mind”), while Hylas (Greek: “matter”) embodies the Irish thinker’s opponents, in particular John Locke. Berkeley argued against Isaac Newton’s doctrine of absolute space, time and motion in De Motu[5] (On Motion), published 1721. His arguments were a precursor to the views of Mach and Einstein.[citation needed] In 1732, he published Alciphron, a Christian apologetic against the free-thinkers, and in 1734, he published The Analyst, a critique of the foundations of calculus, which was influential in the development of mathematics. His last major philosophical work, Siris (1744), begins by advocating the medicinal use of tar water and then continues to discuss a wide range of topics, including science, philosophy, and theology. Interest in Berkeley’s work increased after World War II because he tackled many of the issues of paramount interest to philosophy in the 20th century, such as the problems of perception, the difference between primary and secondary qualities, and the importance of language.[6]

More at:  https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/George_Berkeley

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Are You Following Your Bliss or your Blisters?

Dec 06, 2017 (huffingtonpost.com)
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Steve Kerr allows Warriors players to coach themselves in Suns rout

After securing his 250th win with the franchise on Saturday, Golden State Warriors head coach Steve Kerr decided to hand over the coaching duties and take a break against the Phoenix Suns on Monday night.

But he didn’t hand the reigns to his assistants or other members of his coaching staff. Instead, he gave responsibility to his players to coach themselves in a rare occurrence.

During a timeout midway through the first quarter, Kerr gave his clipboard and pen to veteran Andre Iguodala.

Iggy sat in Kerr’s usual chair and proceeded to break down plays for his teammates while his head coach stood to the side.

As the game wore on, both David West and Draymond Green – who wasn’t playing due to a sprained finger – were also given turns to put their coaching hats on and call plays.

As he wasn’t involved in the encounter, Green ran most of the timeout huddles during the game.

It clearly had the desired effect as the Warriors crushed the Suns 129-83 and were at their devastating best.

Speaking after the game, Kerr explained that his players needed to hear a new voice and he wanted to do this as a way of motivating his players.

“I told them the other night after the last game [on Saturday] that we were going to do it,” Kerr said, per ESPN. “It’s their team. I think that’s one of the first things you have to consider as a coach.

“It’s not your team, it’s not [general manager] Bob Myers’ team, it’s not [owner] Joe Lacob’s team — although I’m not going to tell Joe that.

“It’s the players’ team, and they have to take ownership of it. And as coaches, our job is to nudge them in the right direction, guide them, but we don’t control them.

Steve Kerr explains his decision to let the players coach tonight.

“They determine their own fate and I don’t feel like we focused well at all the last month, and it just seemed like the right thing to do. I thought they communicated really well together and drew up some nice plays, and it was a good night for the guys.”

Superstars and veteran players are occasionally given freedom to speak their mind and take control of timeouts, but this move by the Warriors head coach was uncommon.

It didn’t go down well with some Phoenix players as Jared Dudley described it as a “lack of respect” but Kerr immediately spoke to Suns counterpart Jay Triano after the game and explained that wasn’t his intention.

“I told Jay afterward that it had nothing to do with being disrespectful,” Kerr said. “It had to do with me reaching my team. I have not reached them for the last month.

Oklahoma City Thunder v Golden State Warriors

“They’re tired of my voice. I’m tired of my voice. It’s been a long haul these last few years and I wasn’t reaching them, and we just figured it was probably a good night to pull a trick out of the hat and do something different.”

With the All-Star break just days away and in a matchup at home against one of the worst teams in the west, it would’ve been simple for the Dubs to take things easy on the night.

But Kerr’s shake-up didn’t allow for that to happen and it’s why he’s one of the best coaches in the league.

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The psychology of Nietzsche and how to use it yourself

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The Thinker and Nietzsche. How can we use Nietzsche’s insights to help understand how we think? (Getty Images and Scotty Hendricks)

While we have talked about Nietzschean philosophy before, Nietzsche also considered himself a first-rate psychologist, going so far as to claim in Ecce Homo, “That a psychologist without equal speaks from my writings – this is perhaps the first insight gained by a good reader.”  He then goes on the claim that he is the first philosopher to engage in real psychology.

He may have been on to something, as it is often possible to read his philosophy as psychology and many of his philosophical concepts can be applied as psychological concepts. While psychologists have generally not credited him beyond the occasional reference, his ideas foreshadow some of the most revolutionary ideas in the history of the science.

Here, we present some of the psychological insights Nietzsche gave us.

Nietzsche begins his psychology with what was a radical notion; the idea that you cannot hope to know all about your mind all of the time. While the idea of a person having subconscious ideas, feelings, drives, and repressed memories is not shocking to us, the idea that man, “the rational animal” might not be able to understand how the mind worked at all times would have shocked the thinkers who first read Nietzsche.

He also understood that outside influences could have major effects on the of psyches of individuals. He explains in Human All Too Human that “Direct self-observation is not nearly sufficient for us to know ourselves: we need history, for the past flows on within us in a hundred waves.” Hinting that he understands that our deeper selves are influenced by many more factors than meets the eye. He lists among those factors culture and history, alongside our upbringings and a multitude of drives.

That we still have animal drives is a fact we often try to suppress. But one that Nietzsche saw as a mere fact and one to be dealt with. Dubbed “The Beast Within” by Zarathustra, these drives towards sex and aggression were being suppressed by an archaic morality which saw them as wicked. Nietzsche saw this repression as causing potential energy to go to waste. He argued that it was much better to understand that we have these primal drives and that’s alright, so long as they can be subdued and harnessed.

Chariot of desire

Are you driving your desires, or are your desires driving you? (Getty Images)

But, what should they be harnessed for?

In a world, self-overcoming. Nietzsche was all about personal growth, and his psychology reflects this. Nietzsche viewed the mind as a collection of drives. These drives were often in direct opposition to one another. It is the responsibility of the individual to organize these drives to support a single goal.

Even then, however, Nietzsche views this selection as one drive being stronger than any other one and does not see us as independent of the drives that we are composed of. To organize yourself is really to overcome all of your other drives, which are also parts of the self.

The exact nature of Nietzsche’s ideas is, again, hard to determine as he was less than systematic and often made nearly contradictory statements. He does praise the man who can build himself up, saying that his favorite proto-Ubermensch Goethe, “disciplined himself to wholeness, he created himself.” in Twilight of the Idols.

However, he also said that “At the bottom of us, really “deep down,” there is, of course, something unteachable, some granite of spiritual fatum of predetermined decision and answer to predetermined selected questions. Whenever a cardinal problem is at stake, there speaks an unchangeable ‘this is I.’”’ in Beyond Good and Evil 

It does seem possible to say that Nietzsche is taking a middle road, arguing that it is possible to create yourself within limits set by your nature, culture, and historical forces. How much real freedom this grants the typical person in choosing what they will become is debatable, especially since Nietzsche didn’t believe in free will like the rest of the existentialists.

His often referenced “Will to Power” also fits in with this goal of self-creation. Walter Kauffmann explains in his book Nietzsche, Philosopher, Psychologist, Antichrist that “The will to power is thus introduced as the will to overcome oneself. That this is no accident is certain. The will to power is not mentioned again until much later—and then at length—in the chapter “On Self-Overcoming.” After that, it is mentioned only once more in Zarathustra. The will to power is conceived of as the will to overcome oneself.”

A truly powerful individual will be able to harness their competing drives to help propel them to a singular goal, one which they choose for reasons which are their own; though they are influenced at some level by their innate nature. This conception of self-development has echoes in humanistic psychology.

How can I use this?

Ask yourself if you are in control of your desires. Can you ignore one temptation in order to advance towards a larger goal? If you can’t, Dr. Nietzsche would say that you have yet to overcome some of your desires and they are derailing your ability to become what you can be.

While Nietzsche was skeptical of the benefits of self-reflection for most people he did see it as a worthwhile undertaking for the rare few who lived up to his insanely high standards. If we can make the blasphemy of applying his ideas to everybody, it can be said that the starting point for personal growth is to try to know yourself, what drives you have, what potentials you have or lack, and which drives you would like to foster or subdue. While, for Nietzsche, there is a limit to the knowledge of the self we can find this way, it is a place to start.

Has modern psychology gone anywhere with his ideas?

Freud
Freud, going somewhere. (Getty Images)

When it comes to Freud, the jury is still out on how much Nietzsche influenced him. While Freud claimed to have never read Nietzsche, this seems unlikely given both Nietzsche’s popularity and the similarity of several of their ideas on the subconscious mind. The psychologist Ernest Jones, who knew Freud, wrote that Freud both praised Nietzsche and claimed to have never read him. It has also been suggested that Freud purposefully avoided reading Nietzsche to prevent accusations of plagiarism, others claim he did read Nietzsche and then lied about it.

Carl Jung, a student of Freud, was influenced by Nietzsche when he created his psychological system. However, he didn’t openly admit this. He did use some Nietzschean terminology in his work and once lectured on Thus Spoke Zarathustra. 

The Will to Power was later used as a basis for the individual psychology of Alfred Adler. Nietzsche’s conception of self-becoming has carried on in spirit, if not in exact form, in the humanistic psychology of Carl Rogers.

While his position as a philosopher is well known, Nietzsche’s contributions to psychology are often ignored. His insights into how we are motivated, how deep our subconscious mind goes, and how we might become the people that we hope to be, are all of great use to the individual.  While the fact that he went stark raving mad may throw a damper on sane a person who follows all of his insights might end up, there can be no doubt that his ideas can shine a light into the darkness of the minds that he was among the first to seriously explore.

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Michio Kaku believes in God, if not that God

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(AFP)

Co-founder of string field theory and physicist Michio Kaku made waves last year — or at least seemed to — when it was reported that he’d proven the existence of God. The Geophilosophical Association of Anthropological and Cultural Studies quoted Kaku as saying, “I have concluded that we are in a world made by rules created by an intelligence. To me, it is clear that we exist in a plan which is governed by rules that were created, shaped by a universal intelligence and not by chance.”

Reacting to that public comment, Kaku said: “That’s one of the drawbacks of being in a public sphere: Sometimes you get quoted incorrectly. My own point of view is that you can neither prove nor disprove the existence of God.”

“Science is based on what is testable, reproducible, and falsifiable,” Kaku says. “That’s called ‘science.’ However, there are certain things that are not testable, not reproducible, and not falsifiable. And that would include the existence of God.” He’s noted that discerning whether you live in a Matrix-style construct or not would be another such ‘non-falsifiable’ problem.

Kaku thinking (David Becker)

Part of the problem, of course, is that “God” has different meanings to different people, and in discussing It/Him/Her, there’s apt to be confusion. And yet believers continue to ask scientists this question, perhaps seeking scientific confirmation for their faith. They want to know if Kaku’s an atheist, but when we can’t agree on what God is, “atheist” has even less meaning.

In any event, when asked about God, Kaku is likely to quote Einstein’s suggestion that there are two types of god: “One god is a personal god, the god that you pray to, the god that smites the Philistines, the god that walks on water. That’s the first god. But there’s another god, and that’s the god of Spinoza. That’s the god of beauty, harmony, simplicity.”

It’s that second “God” to which Kaku is drawn. He tells innovation tech todaythat the universe could have been random, but that instead “Our universe is rich; it is beautiful, elegant.”

He’s stuck by what he sees as its exquisite simplicity, pointing out that all of the laws of physics could fit on a single sheet of paper, and, “In fact, what I do for a living is to try to get that sheet of paper and summarize it into an equation one inch long.” He asserts that with his string field theory, he had that one-inch explanation of everything, but that with new developments in membrane theory, he needs a little more room. For now.

Still, Kaku says, this will happen. Physics is the opposite of most other fields of study, he says: With every new advance it gets simpler, and in that lies his sense of wonder. “So, that’s the God of Einstein. The God of beauty, [the idea] that says that the universe is simpler the more we study it.”

Kaku recounts:

“When scientists use the word God, they usually mean the God of Order. For example, one of the most important revelations in Einstein’s early childhood took place when he read his first books on science. He immediately realized that most of what he had been taught about religion could not possibly be true. Throughout his career, however, he clung to the belief that a mysterious, divine Order existed in the universe.”

That other kind of God clearly has less appeal for Kaku, as it generally does for physicists and other scientists, including Neil DeGrasse Tysonwho saysthat believers he talks to tell him that God is all-powerful and good, but when he looks at ”all the ways Earth wants to kill us,” he just doesn’t see how both could be true.

So when Kaku asserts that the goal of string field theory is to “read the mind of God,” it’s important to remember he’s talking about Einstein’s God of Order. To “read the mind of God” would be to find that (one-inch) equation that explains everything in the cosmos. Bearing in mind the continual game of leapfrog going on between math and physics, and that the latest leap is physics’ string theory, which requires a new type of math, Kaku mischievously suggests that the ultimate solution to the schism between physicists and mathematicians could be that God is a mathematician. And, he says, the mind of God — the explanation of Order — may turn out to be string field theory’s “cosmic music,” the resonating of strings through 11-dimensional hyperspace.

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Book: “The Source” by James A. Michener

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Song of Ruth (Wherever you go)


prayermtv
Published on May 28, 2015

During the time of the Judges when there was a famine, an Israelite family from Bethlehem – Elimelech, his wife Naomi, and their sons Mahlon and Chilion – emigrated to the nearby country of Moab. Elimelech died, and the sons married two Moabite women: Mahlon married Ruth and Chilion married Orpah.

After about ten years, the two sons of Naomi also died in Moab. Naomi decided to return to Bethlehem. She told her daughters-in-law to return to their own mothers, and remarry. Orpah reluctantly left, however Ruth decided to stay with Naomi.

What Ruth said to Naomi (Ruth 1:16-17) comprise the lyrics of this song. The melody was composed by Brother Gregory Norbet, from the Benedictine Weston Priory in Vermont.

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‘No Way To Prevent This,’ Says Only Nation Where This Regularly Happens

February 14, 2018 (theonion.com)

PARKLAND, FL—In the hours following a violent rampage in Florida in which a lone attacker killed 17 individuals and seriously injured over a dozen others, citizens living in the only country where this kind of mass killing routinely occurs reportedly concluded Wednesday that there was no way to prevent the massacre from taking place. “This was a terrible tragedy, but sometimes these things just happen and there’s nothing anyone can do to stop them,” said Indiana resident Harold Turner, echoing sentiments expressed by tens of millions of individuals who reside in a nation where over half of the world’s deadliest mass shootings have occurred in the past 50 years and whose citizens are 20 times more likely to die of gun violence than those of other developed nations. “It’s a shame, but what can we do? There really wasn’t anything that was going to keep this individual from snapping and killing a lot of people if that’s what they really wanted.” At press time, residents of the only economically advanced nation in the world where roughly two mass shootings have occurred every month for the past eight years were referring to themselves and their situation as “helpless.”

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