My Reaction to The Brothers Karamazov–Part 22: Ivan

I will now turn my attention to the character of Ivan.  Alyosha is the character that I most want to be like, and I am sometimes able to identify with Dmitri.  But I believe that most of the people who know me would say that I am most like Ivan.  For this reason I feel that I must say at least something about him. Continue reading “My Reaction to The Brothers Karamazov–Part 22: Ivan”

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My Reaction to The Brothers Karamazov–Part 21: An Onion

The death of Father Zossima and the events surrounding it brought on an intense crisis of faith in Alyosha’s life.  Alyosha was so distressed by the sight of his elder Father Zossima being dragged through the mud by his detractors on the day of his death that for a short time he abandoned his faith in God.  Rakitin, a divinity student at the monastery who was really an opportunistic unbeliever, seized upon this moment to try to bring about Alyosha’s fall from righteousness.  What better way to do so than to get him together with Grushenka, the town slut.  Sure enough, Alyosha agrees to go when Rakitin suggests it to him.  Earlier in the story, Grushenka saw Alyosha and asked him to come home with her, but he turned the other way.  But this time he had no reservations about going to her. Continue reading “My Reaction to The Brothers Karamazov–Part 21: An Onion”

My Reaction to The Brothers Karamazov–Part 20: Alyosha

Alyosha is the youngest of the Karamazov brothers.  He first appears very early on in the story, and many critics are of the opinion that he is in fact the main character of the story.  Alyosha is first mentioned in the very first sentence of the story, but the first full description of his character appears in chapter 4 of Book I. Continue reading “My Reaction to The Brothers Karamazov–Part 20: Alyosha”

NFL Prognostications

I am not a very big fan of professional football.  Lewis Grizzard always used to say about northern college football rivalries, and I think this analysis applies equally well to professional football, that they “remind me of two mules fighting over a turnip.  I mean, who cares?”

However, WordPress has this neat feature that allows you to see the search engine terms that people use to find your blog.  And I’ve noticed that some of you have come here looking for NFL prognostications.  So I will go ahead and give it a shot.

I think the Cons will show some improvement over last year, largely due to the major retooling of their secondary that they underwent during the offseason.  How much of an improvement is uncertain, however, because their defense still has glaring weaknesses which were exposed during the first two preseason games, especially against the run.

I think the Aints will also show some improvement over last year because of the addition of Reggie Bush.  How much of an improvement is uncertain, but it is extremely hard to not improve on 3-13.

Beyond that, I really don’t care.  Sorry to disappoint you if you were looking for a more in-depth analysis.  You might want to try CBS Sports or ESPN.com.  But why would you want anything to do with pro football?  College football is so much more fun.

Beating a Dead Horse? Paul Proctor on Kyle Lake’s Death

It is not the purpose of this blog to go around beating dead horses or to keep talking about things long after they have slipped off the radar screen of our consciousness.  But Kyle Lake’s death is once again coming up as a topic of conversation in the blogosphere, and I can’t let it pass without comment. Continue reading “Beating a Dead Horse? Paul Proctor on Kyle Lake’s Death”

Do We Really Want to Hear from God?

When the people saw the thunder and lightning and heard the trumpet and saw the mountain in smoke, they trembled with fear.  They stayed at a distance and said to Moses, “Speak to us yourself and we will listen.  But do not have God speak to us or we will die.”  (Exodus 20:18-19)

The Israelites had the opportunity to hear and receive the Law that they were to live by directly from God.  They could not come up the mountain with Moses, because they had already been instructed to put limits around the mountain and set it apart as holy; anyone who even touched the foot of the mountain was to be stoned to death or shot with arrows (Exodus 19:12-13).  Still, God was willing to speak directly to the people and allow them the opportunity to hear directly from him.

But the people were afraid.  They saw God’s power when he came down onto the mountain and spoke the first part of the law (the portion that we know of as the Ten Commandments–Exodus 20:2-17), and they freaked out.  They did not want to hear from God; they wanted God to speak to Moses and then Moses to speak to them.  “Better him than us,” they thought. Continue reading “Do We Really Want to Hear from God?”

My Reaction to The Brothers Karamazov–Part 19: Rebellion

I wanted to return to something that Ivan said during his lunch with Alyosha as he was leading into his Grand Inquisitor speech. 

He made the following comment:

And remember, cruel people, the violent, the rapacious, the Karamazovs are sometimes very fond of children.  Children while they are quite little–up to seven, for instance–are so remote from grown-up people; they are different creatures, as it were, of a different species.  I knew a criminal in prison who had murdered whole families, including several children.  But when he was in prison, he had a strange affection for them.  He spent all his time at his window watching the children playing in the prison yard.  He trained one little boy to come up to his window and made friends with him….

Continue reading “My Reaction to The Brothers Karamazov–Part 19: Rebellion”