“The Man and the LionA MAN and a Lion traveled together through the forest. They soon began to boast of their respective superiority to each other in strength and prowess. As they were disputing, they passed a statue carved in stone, which represented “a Lion strangled by a Man.” The traveler pointed to it and said: “See there! How strong we are, and how we prevail over even the king of beasts.” The Lion replied: “This statue was made by one of you men. If we Lions knew how to erect statues, you would see the Man placed under the paw of the Lion.”One story is good, till another is told.”False exploits and credit taking for others’ work done well should be treated as FAKE NEWS!
Archive for July, 2018
Zophar the Naamathite‼️Zophar was a friend of Job and in chapter 11 he launches defending God and expatiates on all aspects of His glory.In the first flush it seems true. It is not the contents which Zophar utters which irks and draws a fitting response from Job, at chapter 13 of the book as much as the mettle of the person who said it & the person to whom it was addressed.Hypocrisy is not revealed better in any other piece of literature I’ve ever read.Job’s predicament of having been subjected to the misfortunes that he was going through was not because of the “fault theory” or even “randomness of events”, there was a testimony by the Creator on Job, which was assailed by the Creator’s antipode, the Devil, on the grounds that Job stood protected by God, the Creator, and consequently Job was merely ‘grateful’ and once the protection of God was removed, Job would not be ‘perfect’.God, allows Satan to assault Job serially after God removes the protection gradually till Job is denuded of all protection except Job’s life.It is in these circumstances that Job’s three friends find him and Zophar requires Job to ‘repent’.Job’s justification is known to the readers as his misfortunes were not the cause of his faults.Zophar eulogises God and tells Job to repent.Chapter 13 shows that Job couldn’t find anything to repent. Zophar should have left it at that, but he exalts God and His virtues.Job demolishes Zophar’s arguments by saying the Zophar was not worthy of talking of God.It is not uncommon to find priests walking into houses and telling people to repent, neither leading worthy lives of making such a demand on innocent people and rounding off their demands by exalting God.Maybe Zophar’s averments would have worked with lesser mortals, but Job was of a sterner stuff. Job’s answer thus is amazing:7 Will ye speak wickedly for God? and talk deceitfully for him?
8 Will ye accept his person? will ye contend for God?
9 Is it good that he should search you out? or as one man mocketh another, do ye so mock him?
10 He will surely reprove you, if ye do secretly accept persons.
11 Shall not his excellency make you afraid? and his dread fall upon you?
Job’s assertion is: be worthy of talking and taking up for God and just don’t do it because an institution has vested you with temporal authority. Spiritual humility is fundamental.Jesus’ challenge at Luke 13: that do you think that the tower fell on them in Siloam and you have been spared is because you are more righteous? Is similar to what Job told Zophar, Bildad and the other friend.
The New Living Version of the Bible runs as follows and is easier to comprehend:
Are you defending God with lies?
Do you make your dishonest arguments for his sake?
8Will you slant your testimony in his favor?
Will you argue God’s case for him?
9What will happen when he finds out what you are doing?
Can you fool him as easily as you fool people?
10No, you will be in trouble with him
if you secretly slant your testimony in his favor.
11Doesn’t his majesty terrify you?
Doesn’t your fear of him overwhelm you?
12Your platitudes are as valuable as ashes.
Your defense is as fragile as a clay pot.
13“Be silent now and leave me alone.
Let me speak, and I will face the consequences.
Interpreting, without factoring the text or the context or the person to whom it applies, is terrible!
When still callow and burdened with little understanding to distinguish between a Fact and a Popular Opinion, I was asked by my Professor the meaning of Xanthipee, I blurted with youthful effervescence that the word meant a “shrewish woman” and that the word derived its meaning from Socrates’ wife’s name, who was supposed to have been a shrew.After reading Xenophon, well into my forties, I realised that the name had assumed a meaning without any contemporary authority to back that ascription. Neither Plato nor Xenophon, ever say that Xanthipee was a shrew in any of their writings. However the line ‘after thunder comes the rain’ and the various paintings of Xanthipee emptying a chamber pot on to the head of Socrates, had to be explained to be consistent with the popular beliefs and consequently the idea that Xanthipee was a shrew, has come to stay.A maligning based on popularised beliefs!Facts do not stand alone, they network in a way that envelops the reader into a possibility. Socrates’ sayings and the writings of Xenophon lucidly show that Socrates was a reasonable and honourable man prone a little too much in explaining the lives of those who were living it.It sounded to many as a nice explanation of what their lives were, and how worthy they were.He built a consciousness of a human view of itself.Secondly Socrates showed the Virtuous side of it and named it Good.Thirdly, how Good was Desirable.Finally, how and why a man has to Strive for the desired goal.Socrates showed how a Man through observing and studying oneself, one would know, as much about the outer world, and function perfectly in the external world too!Three fifty years before salvation was brought by Jesus, Socrates brought the thought of making man look both inside and outside himself- Man got over a hunger based Life.The greatest thought Socrates left behind was social responsibility with honourable goodness through effort.
Croatia beat England to reach World Cup final for 1st time
This semifinal match is the most pedestrian match at this level. England having scored their first goal within the first ten minutes of the start are behaving like those kids which failed marshmallow test- no plan- just grab the ball and run to the Croatian end. Kane had been offsided at least twice within twenty minutes.Scoring the first goal within the opening minutes of any football game against a mediocre team is a sure recipe for the standards of the game to hit new lows. Sure enough, I have quit watching after the first half an hour – watch! NOT the first half.England wants to be in the finals. That’s it. They have colonised Croatia and no need for keeping up the international standards of the game. Pity, when the result is the only thing.Yesterday, even after France had taken the lead, they didn’t let their game slacken to merely aim at possession, even though Mbappa was puerile enough to delay throws and free kicks of Belgium in the second half.Kane appears to be desperate to add some international WC goals to his kitty. Kane is not interested in being in position to feed the ball to some of his teammates who probably have a better view and chance, he is all tied up behind the Croatian defenders.France, despite having scored at the 51st minute, did string some poetic passes at the goalmouth of Belgium, though nothing fructified.Those flipped back passes, and pushes to vacant slots where teammates are likely to reach ahead of the defenders and other individual brilliance is what soccer is all about- jingoism notwithstanding. At least that makes great spectacle.With the exit of Brazil, standards have fallen to European club levels.Hope at least in the finals the traditional rivals would raise the standards of this spectator sport and not a statistical affair.
A Footman with a horse doesn’t become a Cavalryman!
Skills, my friend, skills, is what matters. Aspiration with good fortune can fetch a horse but riding skills is not only a question of opportunity, but acquiring skills through practice.After acquisition of riding skills, where it is applied determines the person’s contribution to himself and/or the society.One could become a show jumper, a lion tamer on a horse in a circus, or a warrior. Opportunities could be created like King David of Israel, where he marketed to Saul, his skills as a slinger when his father assigned him the job of being a Swiggy boy to his brothers and Abner.Or because of adverse Times be in the jail, like the Joseph of Genesis, and learn bookkeeping, store management, reporting, prioritising the institutional requirements; and thereafter, when Joseph met the cupbearer identified that he would be released and restored to his position with the Pharaoh, requested him to remember him of his innocence and obtain for Joseph release by putting in a good word.Circumstances are different, but application without skills might get relief, but not RECOGNITION. Joseph could have been released, but to be out in charge of Egypt required skills.Astride a horse never made one a cavalryman.Get the skills & market it. Time will redeem the persistent.