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Jeffrey Seeds    #16105
Asbury Park    NJ USA     Posted: Thursday, June 24, 2010 at 14:22:0 CST (GMT -6:00)

Danny Dolphin sends greetings to Ishmael from Asbury Park, New Jersey.

Dave Turgay    #16103
   USA     Posted: Thursday, June 10, 2010 at 6:22:0 CST (GMT -6:00)

I'm really happy about the responses I got from my last entry. Really sorry to not have posted in a while, especially since I wanted to react to all the feedback I got.

I try to keep it short, but I would like to address Zot Lynn: of course the media is almost entirely composed of Mother Culture's voice and it seems like air to breathe or water for fish. But that's exactly the problem. How do you point out something that's so obvious and universal to everyone? If I tell my students some of the things Mother Culture says, they will probably not understand it, because they have a hard time seeing anything peculiar about it. Even if you raise someone's attention to his breathing, it will feel strange for a while, but it won't take long until it becomes something you don't think about again. I know of course, that this is a general "problem" when it comes to people processing 'Ishmael' and its ideas. But that's why I want examples that are not as easy to ignore as ads or romantic comedies.

But maybe my question was pointless. Once you start to grasp some of DQ's ideas it can be easy to point them out with anything you find. I probably shouldn't worry about this too much, there's enough to think about when you teach this to 25 German students. But, man, I really can't wait to start. I feel like I have already made so much progress with them (and others in a more subtle way), that it really should work well.

I notice about myself (especially now as I'm re-reading 'My Ishmael' again) how it becomes harder and harder to teach things I don't believe in. The problem of being a teacher in a public school is that it's impossible to avoid it completely and the workload and duties you have make it additionally hard to put a spin on all the things you teach. But then again, it is probably not necessary to do it all different at once. The students get confused anyway. But still, I refuse to spend a lot of time on things I don't believe in. Is that too obvious?

Does anyone else have thoughts on teaching 'Ishmael' vs. 'My Ishmael'? I'm not decided yet, because both have dis-/advantages but I want to make the right decision.

Thanks for all the input. I'll be back soon with some of my students' ideas on Europeans vs. Native Americans.

Gwagwagwe    #16102
okc    ok USA     Posted: Thursday, June 3, 2010 at 18:53:0 CST (GMT -6:00)

Gwagwagwe and the K.A.R.M.A. golden shower (P.P.)

Just to get this out of the way! You, who spend your moons staring at this majic box, get out and survive of pokeweed and dock like my pal archangel mark. He’s one of the many new muses that have surrounded GwaChe’ on his transition between the world you see and the world in which I will b. Amongst the others are Kim (Diosa Madre’), A. Scissortail, Red Christ, Maxine and May gun, and of course Mistress P. These current muses are joined by my beloveds of the past Anne L. (Roof Dancer) and P. the Vision Bearer. These strong autonomous people are giving me the therapy that all of us in transition need. We are making history so we may forget the past. We are living our vision (making pretty), relishing in the million one act plays we perform each day for the spectacle junkies (making whoopee), and of course completely ignoring the details of every day (making happy). Yes D.I.A.L. int. is alive and growing.

WWW slowed while I fight the battle of Left of John Brown’s Designer Jeans. This is the sixth of ten battles we will fight before the end date (10/10/10). The fifth was Con-Census 2010 and we pushed through with no wounded and much more courage (less fear). The SSS is still giving me sanctuary, and PPP is blooming like crazy. The DDD is being suppressed through daily sessions of meditation and prayer. The XXX is under control, and the KKK is hunting dead nazi’s on the moon. All is well from the mind of the MK Ultra maniac. I must stop treating people like test subjects, but sometimes they bore me to death.

Love you all GwaChe’ (formally Gwagwagwe. Echo. Cotton, U.P.W. and J.)

Ryan Cove    #16101
   USA     Posted: Wednesday, May 26, 2010 at 12:55:0 CST (GMT -6:00)

I just wanted to say that I am doing my best to reach a million people. I work at a book store and have made Ishmael my staff pick. I have sold more than 550 copies of Ishmael personally in the last 2 and a half years. It's not a million years, but I'm working on it.

Gwagwagwe    #16100
OKC    OK USA     Posted: Wednesday, May 19, 2010 at 17:46:0 CST (GMT -6:00)

Gwagwagwe and Think Tank 1999

After weeks of solidarity with my tribesman on the acceptance of state fear of dirty testing and the birth, the coincidences were becoming so great, the omens so humorous, and the signs so clear. I returned the Mikado and the goddess guiding the reality of the WWW. Our little vision is becoming a force of spirit and strength. A new revolutionary tribe of wobblie window washers is gaining momentum. The accounts are building, the checks are becoming numerous. We even received our first large check from an educational institution. Were finally taking back some of the scratch the took from us when were forced to pay them for brainwashing us or breaking our spirits in the ivory towers of the academic mafia. The crew is all scoundrels, scavengers, and saboteurs and each is taking their cash doing something they hope they will love to do for at least the duration of the next think tank (2015). Each gives according to their means, and each takes according to their needs. We are gaining trust in each other, protecting our own, trading with those in close federations, and most of all sobbing at the gravestone of the state (10/10/10). GwaChe’s Shed Deconstruction slowed progress while he wore the infamous felony hat. Yet his spirit is soaring on 600 ft ropes. The State (Caesar) is taking their chunks. We are taking them back in a variety of fun and challenging ways: please try at home! Hustling the state, hustling the academic mafia, hustling jesus, hustling agrideath, hustling charity, basically hustling everything in sight except our tribe. Don’t fuck with us. Caesar can’t control the seasons, and the goddess is gonna make him her bitch. As soon as I can tear down that shed and grow that mandrake. PPP is greening. Stevey was shot due to a Mother Mary’s OCD. He was a good rooster and I will relive his life for the young ones. A new fourlegged has arrived, Smiley is a wind chaser, and she is going to be a hard worker and a valued part of the aging crew. Frenchy is teaching her the ropes, and Spazy is teaching compassion. The little BC plant spirits are growing in the smoke of their mother, the ephedras are looking longingly at the medicine wheel. The alters and dendroporn are forming. The horehound and wonderberry are basking in a carribian sunset in the picture window of the shack. The pond is full and the duckweed is a mighty mass this year. Needless to say, it is ready for a fully functioning permaculture lifelong experiment for any willing squatters who can make their keep. Thank You Danial. Amongst all the dogma, rhetoric, and lies you found happiness and pretty. Without your providence many other’s would have been lost in that forest. You will always be praised in the storytelling campfires by those who cherish the telling. Goodbye Howard, that People’s History will be forgotten. We will drink the koolaid.

Until next time this is Gwagwagwe speaking as the mulberry time machine.

WWW, SSS, CCC, XXX, KKK, GGG, PPP, AAA, QQQ, TTT, DDD M^5. A bison scissortail federate. One of ten thousand. (10/10/10) the manic number. A small part of the new tribal revolution.

Alli    #16099
   USA     Posted: Sunday, May 16, 2010 at 18:36:0 CST (GMT -6:00)

I definitely loved this book. I have a totally different view of the world now.

zot lynn szurgot    #16098
   USA     Posted: Friday, May 14, 2010 at 2:55:0 CST (GMT -6:00)

Jim, great work; Dave, glad you join it. i can't find references to that title in iMDB or other easy online sources; do you have a link for access to the film? i am presuming it is based on the book by Helena Norberg-Hodge subtitled "Learning From Ladakh", right?

Another film that could belong in the same class and discussion is The Leech And The Earthworm, which explores indigenous resistance to the strip-mining of their own DNA by the corporate globalizers who still colonize:

As for examples of Mother Culture in mainstream media, i am fascinated by your question, Dave, because media seem to me to be composed nearly entirely of Mother Culture's voice. It's like you are asking fish for examples of water; we swim in it. It seems less like examples force their way into every report and headline, and more like every report and headline checked in with the dominant fairy tale of dominance first, with very few saying anything different. Every mention of governments, leaders, politicians, The Fed, stocks, interest rates, banking, markets, and the economy, is a bread-and-circuses display showing what is important to Mother Culture and the struggle for centralized control, control, control. Every mention of jobs is an instruction in how to live; notice how holy they are, how everyone absolutely needs [at least] one? Every entertainment is a distraction wooing us back to somnambulism. Every shocking revelation, expose', and reason for worry is a warning to crawl back into our individual consumptive compartment. Every environmental message about what "we" must do to steward or manage "our" resources and life-support system is about ownership and control, not just greenwashing but the earnest pleas as well. The "issues" we fight over all bring our attention to civilization and its needs for a modern Pax Romana; any so-called balance in reporting is between factions who agree that humans own all other creatures and should exclude The Gods (and the scientific equivalent, reverent humility in the face of awe-inspiring ecosystem design, complexity, and proper primacy over human intervention) from every decision on every issue. Every ad is Her voice saying consumption is best, better than trading support for support (which is so much worse that it is unthinkable, outside the realm of consideration).

Stephen, right on! Well said. Arrogance and conquering, sigh. i'd love to hear your neologism for so-called "developers"; i'd suggest "despoilers", but for one, you may mean a totally new word, and second, how would we get average people to use a word the media won't?

Leah, i'm not familiar with the Venus Project. Can you introduce it to us? Its website doesn't revere the tested old tribal wisdom of living with close ties to a very particular local habitat and its limits. It speaks of resources and energy in unfamiliar ways that look like extensions of old consumption patterns, not a correction of them. i missed the part about how a "high standard of living" would be brought to endangered species or our brothers and sisters among wildlife in general. i was glad to see the sentence, "Only when population exceeds the carrying capacity of the land do many problems such as greed, crime and violence emerge", but very disappointed to see no acknowledgment that it already has. Some ideas sound like part of a new story to be in, like the turn away from money, so the Venus Project thread may contribute to a general discussion, but i haven't yet seen the part where it displays ideas of how to get there from here. It also looks suspicious because of its ties to the discredited Zeitgeist movie.

Jim Tull    #16097
Providence    ri USA     Posted: Wednesday, May 12, 2010 at 8:52:0 CST (GMT -6:00)

Dave, I must have assigned Dan's books, excerpts, speeches, etc, to maybe 3000 college students in over 100 classes over 15 years. Most students get enough from the reading to appreciate how differently they are being challenged to see the world. A few in each class, typically, are changed for life. My preference is My Ishmael. I also show the 1-hour film, 'Ancient Futures', as a companion, always. Good luck. Jim

Dave Turgay    #16096
Landau    Germany     Posted: Tuesday, May 11, 2010 at 14:20:0 CST (GMT -6:00)

Although it's at least a couple of months away, I have started to prepare myself for teaching "Ishmael" next (school) year with my Advanced English course. I'm a bit nervous about it and already feel like I can't have enough time to discuss all that's important. I know I'm overreacting, especially since I've been preparing my students all along since the beginning of this class in August, without them noticing.

But teaching "Ishmael" is one of the main reasons I became a teacher and this will be my first real shot at it.

Today I talked with another class about the school system and when we got to the question "What does the government and society expect from you as students?", the first response I got from a girl (16 years old) was: "They expect us all to be the same. We are supposed to fit in and not be different than anyone else." She didn't seem to agree with this idea but she also didn't seemed to be angry or sad about it. No one protested either, as if they all basically knew that it was true.

A week ago I discussed the treatment of Aborigines in a 9th grade English class (14-15-year-olds). We read a text about the forced removal of Aboriginal children and their schooling to become more "civilized" (as shown in "Rabbit-Proof Fence"). Of course some were shocked and I tried to discuss why anyone would want to educate children this way. I managed to sneak in a "There's no one right way to live" but before that one girl said: "Well, I think those kids were lucky. They didn't need to live in the desert anymore and could grow up in a better lifestyle." It's hard not to get angry at such ignorance, but anger doesn't teach them anything and I know it's not her fault that she ended up thinking like that, but it still made me angry.

PS: Does anyone have ideas for good examples of Mother Culture being present in today's media? I'm only starting to look for examples but I have the feeling that all the "green-washing" helped erase some obvious Mother Culture teaching, making it harder to find good proof. I'd be happy for any suggestions!

Stephen    #16094
Pueblo    CO USA     Posted: Thursday, May 6, 2010 at 11:50:0 CST (GMT -6:00)

I just finished reading Ishmael and think that it continues to be a very relevant book that keeps getting more relevant as each year passes. The oil spill disaster in the Gulf is a good example of how human arrogance and a preoccupation with conquering nature has backfired. I also have been a long term advocate of controlled growth. I want to come up with another name for land "developers". This is an oxymoron. They are not developing anything, and the assumption is that they are taking something that is bad (i.e. land that has existed in its current state for thousands of years) and somehow transforming it into something better. What a bunch of b.s.

Leah    #16093
   USA     Posted: Friday, April 30, 2010 at 20:14:0 CST (GMT -6:00)

Love Quinn's works, is anyone here familiar with the Venus Project? In my opinion, this could be the alternative story humanity could be in.

Joel Futch    #16091
   USA     Posted: Monday, April 19, 2010 at 13:13:0 CST (GMT -6:00)

Hello all. I have strayed away from the Ishmael community for some 10-12 years. I was initially quite active on this site some 12 years back after having read Ishmael and The Story of B. This year, I had the opportunity to re-read Quinn's writings and did so. I also recall, that back in the late 90's there were some additional essays posted, and one in particular that I came here looking for today. It was called something like "The Future of Business", and it drew many parallels to the model of the circus.

If anyone knows whether this particular essay/lecture is still available, please post a link. I have worked through the bulk of the current available material, and am not finding it.. Thanks..

Ally    #16090
   ny USA     Posted: Thursday, April 15, 2010 at 17:0:0 CST (GMT -6:00)

I just finished My Ishmael after reading Ishmael in my 9th grade world history class (really!). These books really change how you think about the world. I hope it's a change for the better!

Brandon Parker    #16089
Nashville    TN USA     Posted: Wednesday, April 14, 2010 at 8:56:0 CST (GMT -6:00)


Heather A Lockhart, 45 Robinwood Dr    #16086
Clifton Park    NY USA     Posted: Friday, April 9, 2010 at 17:43:0 CST (GMT -6:00)

Daniel Quinn's books are the most influential books I have ever read.

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