The Bnetwork Guestbook Archives: November 1996


I agree with your basic premise, as I did with Ishmael (which I loved) but there are some disturbing aspects to the story. Having read the other postings, I feel as if I am about to rain on a parade, but here goes. 1. Although you state that there would be no food fights or riots (at least not amoung experimental mice), your propsals of altering population by controlling food are very disturbing. This would enivitably cause millions to die... and I suggest that those millions would come more from Leaver populations than from Takers. While it could be argued that this is good for teh world as a whole, are we willing to literally commit genocide, using food as esssentially a weapon? 2. I somewhat resent the fact that "The Story of B" is marketed as a novel when in fact it is little more than a statement of creed... no more a work of fiction than the Communist Manifesto, Das Kapital, or for that matter, anything written by the writers of the US Constitution (or the Bible, for that matter) If what you intended to write was such a creedbook, then why not just say so and be up-front about it, rather than cloak it as a work of fiction? 3. I see neither Charles, nor Sharin, nor you for that matter, joining a hunter/gatherer culture. In fact, they very lifestyle that the characters in the book portray would be impossible withouth the "totalitarian Agriculture" culture which they rail against. I am not a "Defender of the Faith", and I have seen the waste and devastation of our culture first hand. Unfortunatly, "B", like so many other would be prophets, merely points out the obvious problems without proposing reasonable solutions.
Bob Seay <bobseay@iguana.ruralnet.net>
USA - Saturday, November 30, 1996 at 18:31:01 (PST)
I'm playing a bit of catch-up with Mr. Quinn's views, having finished ISHMAEL only a few weeks ago, but when a friend med his new book was out, I immediately took action. I'm now on my second reading of "B" with highlighter in hand. As a freelance journalist specializing in articles about people whose lives are dedicated to a bold and inspired purpose or vision, Mr. Quinn's vision astounds me. I look forward to the opportunity of interviewing Quinn for one of my "Project Purpose" articles one day soon, as one way I can help spread "Vision of Visions."
W. Bradford Swift <LifeOnPurpose@a-o.com>
Flat Rock, NC USA - Saturday, November 30, 1996 at 12:16:20 (PST)
I just completed "B" during Thanksgiving week in my old home town within site of the Methodist church I that was a major factor in my youth. Daniel, you hav done itt again. I epect to reread this one several times. I still find myself wanting to deb ate pieces of the logic, but as you stated as a strength I continue to resist and conclusions. I didn't get all the pieces the first time, nor do I expect to the second. But you can expect some questions after I reread "B". Get job, you scare the hell out of me. I have been convinced of the fact that our model of life or "mother culture" is not right for some time. Continued reading and research has only solidified that belief. But I don't feel like I am making any progre ss without another model to replace the broken one. Talk to you soon Daniel. Jim H.
Jim Hartzfeld - EcoJim <ecojim@ifsia.com>
Kennesaw, GA USA - Friday, November 29, 1996 at 21:54:49 (PST)
Just finished. When I finished Ishmael, I just started over. Now, I will sit a while. And check-in....
John Lowry <jlowry@mcn.org>
Fort Bragg, California, CA USA - Friday, November 29, 1996 at 14:59:21 (PST)
I've only gotten 1/3 of it read, savoring every word. I EXPECTED to be disturbed, and I'm not disappointed! Can't wait to finish it and begin planning how I can help get the message out.
Barbara Starr Langhus <starrlang@aol.com>
Oklahoma City, OK 73127, OK USA - Thursday, November 28, 1996 at 17:33:56 (PST)
"You are B" shook me as nothing I've read within my memory. This book's message needs to be pondered and discussed and shared. But, as a teacher, I can already hear the telelphones ringing from irate parents as I struggle to bring some glimmer of B's vision to my Humanities class. Any ideas would be welcome.
ANNDIEHL@aol.com <Ann Diehl>
Eureka, CA USA - Thursday, November 28, 1996 at 16:34:29 (PST)
Ishmael was recommended to me by my Ecology teacher, Mr. Nunley, and ever since then, I've been hooked. Here in the center of Tennessee, one is way too familiar with the devastating effects of totalitarian agriculture. It's beginning to seem that whenever I walk into class with the Story of B under my arm, someone wants to know what it's about, and I find myself spending half the class telling them. Both books have really opened my eyes to a different way of seeing our culture and I hope that one day, we all can change--with the help of 'B'.
Amy Shope <flshope@cris.com>
Murfreesboro, TN USA - Thursday, November 28, 1996 at 13:48:27 (PST)
I'll write you a letter offline and send it later.
C. A. Hilgartner <CAH5@JUNO.COM>
Kirksville, MO USA - Wednesday, November 27, 1996 at 21:10:16 (PST)
Thank you for opening my eyes and giving me another way of looking at the world.
Astrid Nordness <none>
Shokan, NY USA - Wednesday, November 27, 1996 at 17:32:13 (PST)
After reading Ishmael,I wondered what were the pivotal experiences in Daniel Quinn's life that would have shaped such an amazing and authentic vision. Fortunatly,I got hold of Providence and after reading it, knew the reason I had so profoundly resonat ed with his work. I understood what had been missing, the piece without which, the whole picture made no sense. It was the community of life. After reading The Story of B, non-stop, I feel that the depth and breadth of what the border is, what the change of mind is and the urgency and great importance of making the crossing is fully deliniated. Daniel Quinn is a pathfinder, who has already made the crossing to the community of Life. Now for myself, I am making this crossing and join with all the Great One ness and Wholeness of B-ing.
James Van Dyk <James.Van.Dyk@valley.net>
Norwich, VT USA - Monday, November 25, 1996 at 14:04:26 (PST)
Every new great idea is controversial when it first appears. Quinn has a super great idea which makes it super controversial. Anyone who thinks any of the worldıs organized religions (or Wall Street) will take kindly to this book is naive. People wh o attempt to promote this book publicly or in state and national legislatures will meet with personal attack. If Quinnıs message is to survive and awaken humanity, it will be one-on-one over coffee with your neighbor or on the Internet, one computer, one mind at a time. Only through a change in consciousness will the world be saved. Consciousness is changed in the privacy of small spaces, in solitude, where one has the chance to reflect and come to your senses. We will not awaken people in the marketp lace.
Jim Andersen <jander3333@aol.com>
Des Moines, IA USA - Friday, November 22, 1996 at 14:36:52 (PST)
As the death of the culture we live in becomes real it seems Mother Earth is scattering her seeds to the wind in the form of new ideas. It seems to be the challenge to wake up and see what is already here. The constant reminder to Jared to think these things out for himself duplicates what Mr. Quinn has done. B is the One who accepts this challenge. Freedom to Be as you were created. What a beautiful pointing.
Fred Wahlstrom <fwixserv@flanet.com>
St. Petersburg, FL USA - Thursday, November 21, 1996 at 19:26:31 (PST)
Now that I've finished The Story of B, I go about my life in completely different way. As I was reading it, I didn't feel very changed. I felt that these were thigs that I had already thought about, but now I realize that I had been missing a lot that really tied it all together. I was one of those people that thought that man was separated from nature, but now I can see that the point is, is that we are still very much a part of it - our lives are governed by it, and the problem is is that we don't think that it affects us. It is important to realize that we can not leave nature. That by breaking the rules, we are dooming ourselves. I was really excited when I got to the end of the book and it mentioned this web site. I was worried that I would never be able to communicate with others that had read these books. Now we just have to do something. Getting others to read the books is the first step, but we need to do more. We need to go out and show the people that don't belive that there is a logical step to be taken.
Becky Pylypink <Rebecca.Pylypink@voyager.umeres.maine.edu>
Orono, Me USA - Thursday, November 21, 1996 at 09:57:17 (PST)
I thought the "Story of B" was excellent. If gives a great overview of where we went wrong and how our mindset in this culture makes it so difficult to create another river going in another viable direction. The Story of B" plus "Ishmeal" are must reads for anyone who wants to develop a new way or a new filter to examine our life and culture. Jerry Mander's book, "In the Absence of the Sacred" is also a very good read (non-fiction) on why our Mother culture is al l wrong and that we need to look at the Indian cultures as a basis for a better way to live. His examples and analysis are excellent and provide factual support for many of the points made in "The Story of B. In that regard, it would be great if Quinn cou ld give us additional sources to read. . We all need, especially me, to develop a new awareness of how to examine our culture and enumerate the many small and big steps each of us can take to live more in harmony with the Earth. Growing organic vegetables in a sustainable enviroment, buying main ly organic foods when and where possible, meditiation, going off the grid and using solar power, using our bikes whenever possible, living more simply (e.g., acquiring fewer things) are just a few examples. We need lots more. We need to be able to connect with each other to give mutual support. We will also need somehow to create a new culture which will probably be based on one of the Leave cultures with appropriate modifications to make it work for us. We do not want this to be like a 1960's commune. I believe that the only way you can be successful in developing another culture is if you can formulate at least portions of a new Leaver culture that some people can adopt as a way of life. Of course, changes to the culture wil l develop as long as the basic principles of a Leaver culture are followed. Its all very exciting and Quinn gives us the big picture which is indispensable. In addition, his books are a great read.
Richard S. Arfa <Kasafarm@aol.com>
Santa Monica, CA USA - Wednesday, November 20, 1996 at 18:32:16 (PST)
Anybody thought of this yet? B-LEAVER I'm planning to make my own bumper sticker. I've already seen "FRIEND OF ISHMAEL'S" in my area. Read "Story of B" in one sitting. I'm still reeling. Ishmael is well known herebouts. We've even had him as the subject of a sermon in our church. The guest minister got the core right but missed the point that we MUST change our vision. I am badgering my minister to read "Ishmael", more so now that "Story of B" is out and needs reading also. Ask me what kind of church considers these radical ideas.
Richard Walsh <mistypnd@vermontel.com>
Woodstock, VT USA - Tuesday, November 19, 1996 at 06:40:01 (PST)
I just finished B. It picked up right where Ishmael left off. It is far and away the most important book I have read in my life. The ideas in B are more than just theories based on lore, they are truths based on facts.
Jason Crowe <cr8716ja@uscolo.edu>
Pueblo West , CO USA - Monday, November 18, 1996 at 09:47:12 (PST)
Three days to read it, and a lifetime to work it--I loved "The Story of B." More than that, its fresh perspectives and fundamental optimism have recharged my batteries in my personal efforts to advance sustainable energy (I am a renewable energy and energy efficiency advocate). I have already found many people resonating with its basic messages as I have shared them with old and new friends. I look forward to our exploration of ways in which we can internalize, share and spread the lessons.
Karl R. Rabago <krabago@edf.org>
Austin, TX USA - Monday, November 18, 1996 at 08:39:49 (PST)
I am not normally one to be profoundly affected by popular literature, especially when its in the guise of fiction. The message in the Story of B really hit home. These are ideas that I have had fractured and and unorganized in my mind for a long tim e. Reading this book has helped me to assemble a more complete picture.
Derek Norris <dnorris@str.com>
Chicago, Il. USA - Sunday, November 17, 1996 at 20:58:11 (PST)
I have just finished reading B and it has changed the way I view the world. I visited this site last week and have begun to read some of the other books that were recommended. The picture continues to unfold. I look forward to dialogue with others who are acquiring this vision.
Ellen Cargill <EBCargill@aol.com>
Dover, MA USA - Sunday, November 17, 1996 at 09:48:35 (PST)
I have just now finished reading _The Story of B_ and my mind is boggled. After reading _Ishmael_ I felt like I had to talk to someone else but there was no one who would understand me. Now I know there are others to whom I can speak my mind without sounding crazy. Thanks for setting up this site so we can all be in communication. We have to do everything possible to make sure _The Story of B_ is read by as many people as possible. Are you going to publish translations?
Mary Podio <mary@baobabtree.com>
Austin, TX USA - Thursday, November 14, 1996 at 10:50:54 (PST)
Ever since I heard Dan read a chapter from the work-in-process that has become _The Story of B_, I have been eagerly awaiting it's release. _Ishmael_ had a profound effect on me and my belief system. Based on what I heard of "B" months ago, I expect it will "be" yet another of the greatest stories ever told. Dan will be reading from _The Story of B_ at 7:30 P.M. tonight, Wed. 11/13/96, at Barnes & Noble at the Arboretum in Austin. Join us there to welcome Dan & congratulate him on his work. I imagine that many of us will continue reading "B" through the nig ht.
Chuck Ragland <cragland@onr.com>
Austin, TX USA - Wednesday, November 13, 1996 at 14:31:49 (PST)
I haven't finished B yet, but I have read Ishmael, and after just graduating from a right wing fundamental Christian college, I've finally found some truths. Thank you.
Kerrie-Beth Mello <kbmello@aw.com>
Beverly, MA USA - Wednesday, November 13, 1996 at 11:52:57 (PST)
The bookstores are a little slow in this neck on the woods. I loved Ishmael and Providence and am anxiously awaiting the Story of B.
Jason Crowe <cr8716ja@uscolo.edu>
Pueblo West, CO USA - Wednesday, November 13, 1996 at 11:22:27 (PST)
I devoured B in one sitting and believe it to be of profound importance. In the several days since it has been available I have been listening and interacting with our culture in an entirely new light. As a university student in the Palouse of Idaho, I see the myth of totalitarian agriculture spread without a second thought. Why should there be a second thought. Ishmael was wonderful but perhaps a bit subdued. B is in your face and urgent! It is only monday but I have managed to disrupt several o f my calasses already. Anti-totalitarian agriculture is not a popular stance here. Not that it is anywhere. I am reccommending this book to all of my friends and professors and anyone else that will listen. The local bookstore has asked for a review of B for its newsletter and I will write that also. I am interested with discussing B over the net and among fr iends here.
Josh Andrews <josh901@uidaho.edu>
Moscow, ID USA - Monday, November 11, 1996 at 14:17:58 (PST)
Welcome B and Students of B!

This site is intended to be a resource for B and those aspiring to B. Please explore what we have created and let us know your thoughts, suggestions, and/or comments. Post them here, or send email.

Thanks to all those who have helped the B-network to become a reality: Daniel and Rennie Quinn, and the very talented folks at CommWerks including Brianna, Jeff, Clover, Pat, Craig, Dave, Brooke, Mia, and Manny.

Alan Thornhill
athornhi@ishmael.org
Webmaster at The B-network and Ishmael's Domain
Houston, TX USA - Sunday, November 10, 1996 at 14:35:30 (PDT)