Saturday, October 20, 2018

A Few Words From...B.H.Liddell Hart

"Peaceful nations are apt, however, to court unnecessary danger, because when aroused they are more inclined to proceed to extremes than predatory nations.  For the latter, making war as a means of gain, are usually more ready to call it off when they find an opponent too strong to be easily overcome.  It is the reluctant fighter, impelled by emotion and not by calculation, who tends to press a fight to the bitter end.  Thereby he too often defeats his own end, even if he does not produce his own direct defeat.  For the spirit of barbarism can be weakened only during a cessation of hostilities; war strengthens it - pouring fuel on the flames." - Strategy

Thursday, October 18, 2018

The Collapse VI

01 June 20XX

My Dear Lucilius:

You asked me in your last missive about others: Had I heard from them, what was their reaction then – and now.

My move, of course, created the sort of stir you can imagine for anyone of my age: there were those who thought I was crazy or “was going on an actual extended hermitage” (actual quote), there were those who could not believe I had decided to give up urban city life for some unknown wilderness (“But the coffee bars? The Nightlife?”), and there were were a precious few that simply stuck to congratulating me for being able to do the very thing that they, in some for or fashion, had dreamed doing as well.

Over time, of course, the whole circle has greatly contracted as I am no longer local for a great many activities and thus slipped from a great many people's minds. And, to be fair, I had become actively reclusive, not following up on and involving myself in most activities I had been participating in before hand. The break had to be complete.

Why this reclusiveness, you might ask? Simply put, involvement in so many ways has become a liability over the years. Who you know, what you “like”, and what you do have no longer become diverse interests to follow and be amazed at but rather things to be weaponized against the others. If you support something your are “X” - but if you fail to support something else, you are also “X” (honestly, it seems, by people who did little to support their own basic needs but expected – by buying power or charity – for others to do so). If I had ever sent Christmas Cards (Mrs. Seneca always handled that), they would have dwindled to a trickle (sad, as they make excellent kindling come January).

But somewhat of note is last year – what with the economy I can only guess – I have had people suddenly start “reaching out” (a term I detest, by the way: it is not as if they are physical touching me), wondering what and how I was doing. One or two wanted to actually just “drop by” for a week or two. Fortunately I am not very diligent about checking those lines of communication so I can always state “Apologies, I received this too late”.

Strangely enough, many of the most desperate needs to “see me” come from those whose political or philosophical or theological philosophies were the most different from my own. These are always the most poignant to me - “I know we have disagreed strongly in the past but….”

The storm, when it comes, rips up all trees without preference.

Your Obedient Servant, Seneca

Wednesday, October 17, 2018

Tuesday, October 16, 2018

On Churches And Throwing

This last weekend I traveled to East T for a throwing competition.  This was the first time I have been that far east in this, our adopted state (for the record, it is quite green and pleasant - not at all like the image most people have of the state).

The games were actually part of a Scottish festival on, of all things a church campus.

Now, we throwing folks are not a particularly devout group.  The language that floats about on the field is, well, something that is inevitably reminded about in the throwing rules under "This is a family event.  Swearing is to be kept to a minimum".  So it was a little surprising that it would be on a church grounds.

More surprising?  This is actually an outreach of the church.

I heard it both from one of the athletes out throwing as well as from (what I assume) was a pastor:  this was an outreach event of this church - in fact, they had stopped another event to provide more funding for this one. 

Why?  The pastor said:  "This is a way to get people to a church which they would otherwise not go to.  It is a way to reach people we could not otherwise reach".

This is the first time I have heard of a church doing this.  But I thoroughly approve of it.

Do I think it will make a major difference?  Not sure.  But if one person is saved because we went out and threw yesterday, it is completely worth it.

This is a fantastic demonstration of innovative thinking on the church's part.  Would that more would follow in its path.

Monday, October 15, 2018

2018 Garlic

Yesterday I planted Garlic.

I am just not feeling the gardening urge this Winter.  Maybe it is too many failures from years past.  Or maybe the fact I can never seem to grow much.

But garlic is my one talisman against the darkness.

Garlic never fails me. I have grown it pretty much steadily the last 15 years or so in two climates and three homes.  It somehow restores my faith in my ability to grow something.  And, it is something that I am sure we will use.

I will patiently wait until I see the sprouts and then hover over them all winter and spring.  It serves as a constant reminder that I can do something of worth in this area, even if it as simple as single garlic bulb.

Never Give Up.  Never Surrender.

And Always Grow Garlic.