Jump to content

TrueTomHarley

Did Malachi Have Teenagers? - a Russian Thread

Topic Summary

Created

Last Reply

Replies

Views

TrueTomHarley -
TrueTomHarley -
78
2184

Top Posters


Recommended Posts


Either Malachi had sulky kids or all sulky kids have read Malachi. How else can you explain his style of writing?

Everything is a challenge. Malachi is the last Bible book – a short job of just four chapters:

“I have shown love to you people,” says Jehovah. But you say: “How have you shown us love?”

And if I am a master, where is the fear due me?’ Jehovah of armies says to you priests who are despising my name.” But you say: “How have we despised your name?

“‘By presenting polluted food on my altar.’ ‘And you say: “How have we polluted you?”’

“You have made Jehovah weary with your words. But you say, ‘How have we made him weary?’

Return to me, and I will return to you,” says Jehovah of armies. But you say: “How are we supposed to return?”

“Will a mere human rob God? But you are robbing me.” And you say: “How have we robbed you?”

“Your words against me have been strong,” says Jehovah. And you say: “How have we spoken against you among ourselves?”

Enough already! Everything is challenged! Everything is hurled back in his face.

Malachi is the last book of the Hebrew scriptures. Just for kicks, turn the page. Find yourself in the gospels and roll that attitude onto Mary, mother of Jesus. (Luke 1:26-28)

"In her sixth month, the angel Gabriel was sent from God to…Mary. And coming in, the angel said to her: “Greetings, you highly favored one, Jehovah is with you.”

“In what way is he with me?” she shoots back.

“Forget it!” comes the reply. “There is my servant Ethel. She’ll do fine.”

Whatever is wrong with Mary - not smart-mouthing the angel?

Share this post


Link to post

So I am trying to get this book on the Russian situation done before Putin himself becomes a Witness and calls the whole thing off, and it is just one dumb thing after another to mess me up.

Don't misunderstand, if it happens, I will rejoice - 'greater good' and all, though it will mean a year's worth of work down the drain. (or would it mean a neat little chapter at the end?)

I'm not that far off. I can finish writing it in the waiting room at the collision shop.

 

image.jpeg

Share this post


Link to post

I wrote before that much of the book has been written here on this forum, and that sometimes paragraphs already written are augmented or even replaced by what is written here. An example follows. I wrote what is next in answer to an unusually contentious person:

As far as I am concerned, Trump v Hillary is a godsend for Christians because it brings into stark relief 2 Timothy 3:1-5 - that endless list of negative traits. It used to be if you cited it and your listener didn't agree the verse is fulfilled now more than ever, there was not much you could do about it - it is subjective. But now its fulfillment is so obvious. 

It used to be people would scream at each other till the cows come home over God/no God, or medicine/alt medicine or various other sideshows that could be ignored by the average person. But with Trump/hate Trump, almost everybody is drawn in and 2 Timothy 3 becomes the yeartext for this entire system of things.

I had already made this point in the book. I replaced it all with what is above. It is more pointed, forged by addressing a strident faultfinder. The stuff it replaces was too professorial, and therefore ponderous and duller .

One benefit of posting is that you take note of the kickback you get and decide to what extent you want to address it. It doesn't really matter what you think you are saying - it only matters what people hear. Every rebuke is a check, and you must not blow it off as nothing, or you will be checkmated prematurely. Allies help you, like @JW Insider, when I say something not accurate and he throws it back in my face. But even idiots help you by supplying examples of how your words fall upon those with whom you disagree. Their reactions are the most helpful of all. You are not going to please everyone - especially on so volatile a topic as JW, but you don't want to needlessly antagonize people as you are being pointed.

Share this post


Link to post

The upcoming book about Witnesses in Russia doesn't use the New World Translation as the 'house' Bible because the New World Translation is banned in Russia. 

I settled upon the New American Bible - Revised Edition instead and forced myself to accept that the name of God is 'the LORD.' 

In the Ten Commandments movie, the Israelites are despondent because they do not even know their God's name. Later on they are happy as pigs in mud. They have learned it It is 'The LORD'

Share this post


Link to post

NABRE works just fine as a house translation for the book once you get around Jehovah being The LORD. But every so often, it alone had the 'correct' rendering. It alone carried the correct flavor. For example:

Paul summarizes God’s customary dealings with the Israel of that day: “All day long I stretched out my hands to a disobedient and contentious people,” Romans 10:21

In the world of Bible translation, most works list ‘disobedient’ as the first adjective. The second is up for grabs. NABRE, says ‘contentious’. Others say ‘obstinate’, ‘rebellious’, or ‘stubborn’. Some older translations say ‘gainsaying’. (I remember seeing 'gainsay' in older JW literature and wondering what in the world that meant?)

The banned New World Translation says obstinate. But the pre-revised NWT hit the nail on the head, by saying they ‘talk back.’ Apparently when that version was revised in 2013, someone thought ‘talk back’ was too much of a paraphrase, but I like it best.

BTW, does anyone here have Beduhn's book 'Truth in Translation" who can tell me for endnotes the specific page the term "Protestant's burden" is defined? Also his statement that: 'translators “all approached the text [ John 1:1] already believing certain things about the Word... and made sure that the translations came out in accordance with their beliefs.”

Anyone?

Share this post


Link to post

I begin to walk back what I said about the older NWT being too much a paraphrase at Romans 10:21. 

If in olde English 'gain' is the root word for 'against' and say means then what it means now, then 'talk back' is the most literal rendering of gainsay & and all the other Bibles, even the 2013 revision have veered from the literal.

Will @JW Insider go along with this? He knows a lot of stuff.

Share this post


Link to post
Like many projects we embark upon, this one has done nothing but grow and grow, and I now have something about 140K words long. It will be the most rigorous work (really, the only rigorous work) I have done.
 
I am in the footnote stage now. 'Crowdsourcing' worked so well last time, let us try it again. I need some help with the following paragraph:
 
"As mentioned, eight governing members of Jehovah’s Witnesses were sentenced to American prison in 1918, on violation of the Espionage and Sedition Act. The religious press rejoiced. Dr. Ray H Abrams, in his book ‘Preachers Present Arms,’ reports: “I have been unable to discover any words of sympathy in any of the orthodox religious journals.” By this measure, the Russian media’s response was almost cheery. Most of them rejoiced, but not all. One that did not was Novaya Gazeta, which ran an article summing up Witness beliefs with reasonable accuracy, if not proper order, and was sympathetic to their plight – taking for granted that they must continue their ministry. Included were vignettes telling why some became Witnesses and how they felt they had benefited from the faith. One woman said that she regretted only one thing – that she learned about the Bible too late to save her first marriage. Applying Bible principles would have done it, she felt, if she only had known them."
 
 
Does anyone here have the 1933 book (it was revised in 2009) Preachers Present Arms, who can tell me what page the above quotation is on?

Share this post


Link to post
50 minutes ago, TrueTomHarley said:

The religious press rejoiced. Dr. Ray H Abrams, in his book ‘Preachers Present Arms,Â’ reports: “I have been unable to discover any words of sympathy in any of the orthodox religious journals.”

I assume you know that this quote cuts across the bottom of page 183 and the top of 184 of the 2009 revision. It is paginated exactly the same in the original 1933. Here is a picture from both:

1933:

image.png

2009:

image.png

Your work, by the way, looks to be very well done if I can extrapolate from that snippet above. I would caution not to take this particular idea too far, as it turned out that he was wrong if you consider those religious bodies who wrote about the treatment of the Bible Students after the imprisonment was ongoing.

The reason "Upton Sinclair" is highlighted is because I had once remarked that I think the only two outside books promoted in the Golden Age were "Angels and Women" [Seola] and a book by Upton Sinclair. The Sinclair quote is from "The Appeal to Reason," March 22, 1918. Sinclair wrote for leftist papers, and as a Socialist was aligned (from a Labor perspective) with many of C J Woodworth's positions in the Golden Age.

Share this post


Link to post
2 hours ago, JW Insider said:

Sinclair wrote for leftist papers

He also originated the irresistible quote: “It is difficult to get a man to understand something, when his salary depends on his not understanding it,”

Share this post


Link to post

By happenstance I follow Russian experts @Bershidsky and @Robert_Bridge on Twitter, and find they are polar opposites. The former writes for Bloomberg and is critcal of today's Russia. The latter writes for RT.com and praises it.

That's good for the upcoming book. I do not want my perception of the king there to be formed by that of him here.

Bridge has the coolest banner photo I have seen. https://twitter.com/Robert_Bridge

It could be said (as I did) that his banner really puts the ass into astronaut. He said they are fighter pilots, not astronauts. What does he know?

Share this post


Link to post
13 hours ago, Nana Fofana said:

I definitely wouldn't mind reading the rest of this Upton Sinclair article^ that appeared in the March 22, 1918 issue of his magazine, "The Appeal to Reason", but haven't found it online, so far.

I found it, but it has nothing to do with the quote that the author referenced in his footnotes. see footnote 17. But I have read the original so I figured it was a typo.

image.png

 

Turns out that the author made a typo. I looked up the 3/22/1919 issue and found it:

image.png

edited to add a link to some information about the paper "The Appeal to Reason:"

    Hello guest!

Share this post


Link to post

From the above:

In a telegram, Upton Sinclair makes the following statement in defense of the leaders of the International Bible Students' Association, who are now held in the Federal penitentiary at Atlanta, Georgia, because they expressed sincere views about the evil of war : "The Appeal has asked my opinion on the case of the leaders of the International Bible Students' Association who are now prisoners. I have known a number of these people, and while they may not appreciate the compliment I testify that they are sincere religious zealots. They are, unquestionably, victims of war hysteria and have certainly the right to appeal from America drunk to America sober. Their opposition to war was honest and they are entitled to the benefits given by the government to conscientious objectors. As a Socialist I oppose the suppression of ideas by violence, and claim for all beliefs the right of free competition in the field of public opinion. The fact that the government, as a matter of policy, refused refused to tell anybody what he might or might not say, refused to give any opinion of publications in advance, made the enforcement of our Espionage Act a disgrace. Moreover, there can be no question that the persecution of these followers of Pastor Russell sprang in part from the fact that they had won the hatred of 'orthodox' religious bodies. The 'orthodox' church is a vested interest and it fights for its privileges as all vested interests do today, not fairly but with intrigue and pretence."

Also, the same issue has the following on page 4. It's almost a full page, but here is the top portion:

image.png

Share this post


Link to post

Can anyone tell me the title of the short story referred to? I could use it for the book. Its setting is czarist Russia.

Isaac's friend had a metaphor for life. He viewed himself as playing chess against God. This had both negative and positive connotations.

The negative was obvious: you didn't stand a chance against God. He would pound you with every move. But there was a positive side: no one wants to squander their time playing an unworthy adversary. It was a great honor playing against God. Even getting pummeled, you stood in awe of His skill.

The friend, a handyman, was summoned to repair a window casing. He was relieved to find the homeowner, a huge, mean, jealous bully, was away at work. But his drop-dead gorgeous wife was home ill, bedridden. The repairman had to use a stepladder and reach over the woman to reach the casing.

He slipped! He fell on top of the woman! Belt buckles locked and they couldn't separate. At that moment the door flew open; the husband had returned from work! His eyes and nostrils widened! He charged, fists clenched!

Our hero had time for only one thought: "Masterful move, God! Absolutely brilliant!"

Share this post


Link to post
26 minutes ago, JW Insider said:

Turns out that the author made a typo. I looked up the 3/22/1919 issue and found it:

I am impressed. Depending upon how heavy you are, you are worth your weight in gold.

The Librarian show start applying for a job at Mickey D.

Share this post


Link to post
3 hours ago, TrueTomHarley said:

Isaac's friend had a metaphor for life. He viewed himself as playing chess against God. This had both negative and positive connotations.

It's far from the same story, but several elements of that story can be found in Isaac Bashevis Singer's: "A Friend of Kafka"

Try page 277-286 here: 

    Hello guest!

It's not the only story where he speaks of playing chess with Fate (or God) or uses similar analogies. He has written about 200 stories and I have only read about 10 of them. Elsewhere, I guess, he (or another person) could have boiled down that theme into the comedic scene you referenced.

Share this post


Link to post
2 hours ago, JW Insider said:

It's far from the same story, but several elements of that story can be found in Isaac Bashevis Singer's: "A Friend of Kafka"

Try page 277-286 here: 

    Hello guest!

It's not the only story where he speaks of playing chess with Fate (or God) or uses similar analogies. He has written about 200 stories and I have only read about 10 of them. Elsewhere, I guess, he (or another person) could have boiled down that theme into the comedic scene you referenced.

Ah, Franz Kafka, my fellow countryman. I had to read his book "Der Process", in German, in an English school :D.

I haven't read anything of Isaac Singer's.....

Share this post


Link to post
35 minutes ago, Anna said:

Ah, Franz Kafka, my fellow countryman.

From the "Intorduction":

I did realize from the onset that the New World Translation would have to go. Even a quote from it is enough to designate a book as extremist. Even, in theory, Jesus’s words about how one must love one’s enemy. Such quoting might not actually draw the wrath of officials, but it is difficult to know for sure. Russia is a land of Kafkaesque contradictions in matters of religion. Jehovah’s Witnesses are declared extremists in Russia and shortly thereafter Putin inducts one into the Order of Parental Glory as a fine family example.

Share this post


Link to post

Chapter 6, entitled Statecraft, contains 54 endnotes, of which 18 are scriptures. 

When I came to endnote Chapter 7, Education, I decided to rewrite much of the chapter. It is a minor rewrite - mostly just shuffling about what is already there so as to make the whole tighter. Much of it started as independent posts in various places (mostly here) and it is not a piece of cake cobbling it into one coherent whole.

Some new parts will be written. Some old parts will be deleted as not directly relevant. Maybe they will appear somewhere else someday.

Share this post


Link to post

Okay, chapter 7 on Education is done. 43 endnotes of which 16 are scriptures.

Part II can be expected to have more sciptural endnotes than Part I because more of it is original and not a discussion of news reports.

The trick with education is to turn intended use of the statistics on their head. When detractors charge that Witnesses drag up the bottom of the Pew list for education and income, you don't squirm and try to qualify it, much less apologize for it. You point out that it is exactly what one would expect of any group truly following Christ today.

Now on to Chapter 8: Brainwashing.

Share this post


Link to post

As I suspected, chapter 8  - Brainwashing - has a higher concentration of scriptures for endnotes - 18 of 37.

there are a couple of points that I want to find a specific source for which to endnote. One is the Western meddling encouragement of Bolshevik revolution in Russia, as a way to affect the power balance of WWI

The other is a concise source to back up the following statement: "Among the philosophical underpinnings of compulsory public education in the Western world is that children ought be separated early from the possible pernicious influence of the parents so as to be molded by greater society."

Now on to chapter 9 - Discipline

Share this post


Link to post
8 hours ago, Nana Fofana said:

I don't mean to insult you with the poor quality of these- just too tired?

I cannot be insulted when given a freebee.  :)

I can, and may, spend a day in the library to find actual good sources for things I have absorbed but have long since lost the specific origin. But what you offered seems to work pretty well.

Your source links to Jay Leno as 'educator of the year.' You might like that in NY John Taylor Gatto was named "teacher of the year" back when we followed such things more closely. He bit the hand that fed him by acknowledging that - yes, he is a great teacher, but it has only been by bucking the school system at every step.

He tirelessly tried to reform public education and finally gave up, to become a prime homeschool advocate. I follow him on Twitter.

Share this post


Link to post
1 hour ago, TrueTomHarley said:

You might like that in NY John Taylor Gatto was named "teacher of the year" back when we followed such things more closely. He bit the hand that fed him by acknowledging that - yes, he is a great teacher, but it has only been by bucking the school system at every step.

He tirelessly tried to reform public education and finally gave up, to become a prime homeschool advocate. I follow him on Twitter.

Sorry to change the subject, but just can't pass up a chance to name-drop. I know John Taylor Gatto very well, and we even stayed in his apartment in Alicante, Spain for 5 weeks, jumping off to Ibiza and Mallorca for part of the time. My wife worked in a special experimental school in NYC with him (Lincoln Academy), a wonderful experience for her and all of the others there, too, especially the students. I wrote my first AI program for an Apple II computer for this school, which was a 'fake news' detector for learning journalism. It actually allowed kids to "gossip" about each other (within limits, of course), but internally produced a percentage likelihood that the gossip was true, based on:

  • The weight/relevance given to a person who initiated an item of "gossip"
  • The weight/relevance given to a second witness who independently initiated the same piece of gossip
  • The lower (but nevertheless additional) weight/relevance given to a random student who agreed with a certain piece of gossip
  • The weight/relevance given to a denial by the the person about whom the gossip had been initiated
  • The weight/relevance given to a denial and/or 'thumbs up' or 'thumbs down' by the editor-in-cheif, aka the classroom teacher

With some settings, not even the teacher could completely override the chance that a piece of gossip was "true." In many school environments such a program would be used by students to shame and embarrass other students who they might not like. (Which is either too dangerous, or requires constant monitoring by a teacher.) But kids at this school loved these kinds of things and didn't want to lose access by abusing them.

John Gatto is still a writer, speaker and consultant. He even wrote some of those old semi-anonymous "Monarch Notes"/"Cliff Notes" which allow students to "cheat" by only reading the summaries and overview discussions of famous works of literature. Most of his politics are abysmally wrong-headed, imo, but he's willing to think completely "outside the box" to make his point. He hates the Board of Education, for most of the right reasons, and would revamp the entire U.S. Department of Education. The school mentioned above, was started by another one of our friends who still sets up these experimental schools in California now. The success of these schools essentially proved Gatto's point by producing highly qualified students without any concern for test-taking.

Share this post


Link to post
12 hours ago, TrueTomHarley said:

One is the Western meddling encouragement of Bolshevik revolution in Russia, as a way to affect the power balance of WWI

Excellent point, by the way, although "Western" here would mean mostly the meddling by Germany. (Which is why some Russians still say they lost to the losers when referring to Finland, Ukraine, etc.)

Share this post


Link to post
1 hour ago, JW Insider said:

John Gatto is still a writer, speaker and consultant.

I tweeted to John Gatto the following. He responded with a 'like.'

I'll bet that NYS Education promo drives

    Hello guest!
nuts.
    Hello guest!
The poor child Tiana missed a few minutes of school and now she is dumb as a rock!

It is the most aggravating promo. My wife mentioned something I had not thought of - the image of the teacher deliberately (in her view) picking on Tiana - calling her out to humiliate her. I tweeted that to John too, but he did not respond. 

There is no way he would not agree with it, though. I think he was just tired of me. That is easy to understand. Even @The Librarian gives me a sharp rap on the knuckles now and then.

Share this post


Link to post
4 hours ago, Nana Fofana said:

I don't know if you perhaps will like these noble thoughts of this man, when he have lay out necessities of remove  all child from parent influenze?  [I hoping you will like.

Yes, it probably works. Thank you. It is but a side point. I used to have a lot of such material from our homeschooling days a while back.

Share this post


Link to post

Not everything will make the cut in editing. It is always good to write far more than you will need and prune later.

I like the following two paragraphs, but decided they had to go. They are a little too self-indulgent for the Education chapter, and they champion homeschooling, which is not at all a concern of the book. They may show up somewhere someday, but shelve them as regards the present book on Russian persecution:

"Many an educated person has chosen menial work, so as to not turn his or her mind over to corporate or government interests –  ‘the Man.’ The Man may reward you materially, but he does not do so without demanding your soul. This writer stumbled across a BBC list of the top 100 important books of all time. I discovered that I had read over half – no other commenter had read more. Is it personal boasting to mention this? Hardly. Take it as an invitation to be a janitor, for it is while so employed that I ‘read’ most of them via ‘Books on Tape.’ The Man would have never granted me the time. Even in college he would not have done that. On Twitter, I came across a CEO who grumbled: “Stupid janitor forgot to leave an extra roll of toilet paper – I’m screwed.” I tweeted back: “I read 54 of the BBC’s topic 100 books as a janitor via Books on Tape. Sorry about the toilet paper.” One must think outside of the box of today’s strait-jacketed educational system, which is often little more than indoctrination into the prevalent thinking of this world.

"They wouldn’t let my homeschooled son read when he briefly forayed into public schooling - it was ever workbooks for him. When he later entered community college, they declared his math skills age-appropriate, but his reading skills “off the charts.” “I had no idea that there were so many stupid people,” he innocently remarked later. How can they not be stupid? The intellectual diet of this system of things is one of pop culture, transitory trends, and video games. He had never been denied those things; he had simply been directed to keep them in their place. And nobody on the homeschool front gave two hoots about workbooks. He could read all day if he wanted to and sometimes he did. ‘He reads?’ exclaimed a local educator – an ally – to my wife who had asked what she should do, and then ventured: “Don’t do anything” – do not mess up that formula."

Actually, maybe some parts of this I will stick in after all - weave it into other paragraphs where it will not hijack the overall theme.

9 hours ago, Nana Fofana said:

I know, because maybe you  even wrote it all yourself?

No, I didn't Nana, but I agree with all of it. I have written of it, too, only not as concisely. Thank you for it.

Share this post


Link to post

TTH said in one of his posts; "Also his statement that: 'translators “all approached the text [ John 1:1] already believing certain things about the Word... and made sure that the translations came out in accordance with their beliefs.”

Interesting point on John 1:1 in the catholic Diaglot - in the word for word translation of the Greek into English it says that the Word was "A GOD"............however in the column of the transliteration, (I think that is the word), it reverts back to the false teaching of the trinity, because it says "the Word WAS GOD".........I hadn't really noticed that before.....I just happened to be checking something else when I saw it.

Share this post


Link to post
the Watchtower quoted from Mark A Smith's book about Christian leaders eventually conforming to secular culture. He looks at areas where that is true: divorce, gays, women's rights, abortiion. I ordered the book & cited part. He does not seem to be on Twitter or I would follow.
 
Chapter 10 - Governing Body - is endnoted, and endnotes have switched from being mostly news sources to mostly verses. Chapter 11 - Apostasy - is next. Will be done today, I hope, and a few minor rewrites.
 
I found something that will do, Miss @The Librarian. Thanks.

Share this post


Link to post

Is the procedure for footnoting changing with advent of the internet? The old rules for publisher location and even page number for a book seem to no longer be sacrosanct.

The Librarian must be frothing with anger at this sacrilege.

Share this post


Link to post

The Witness parent sees the evolution parade of ape-like creatures and wants to turn them around and march them back into the slime from which they came. But he must take care. WE are not the religionists that put dinosaurs on the Kentucky ark. The days of creation are not 24hrs, allowing time for some 'micro-evolution' to happen.

Since the time-frame allows for micro, why bicker with those who insist it happened that way? Let scientists be scientists and Bible teachers be Bible teachers.

download.png

Share this post


Link to post

Who can say how it will ultimately turn out? I don't venture there overmuch.

But I note that if God stamped out new forms of life like Ford stamps out new Fiestas on the assembly line - well, that he could do in a literal 24-hour day. So what is the point of the aeons and epochs that are used in descibing the creative days.

It is good not to be dogmatic, is all I am saying. Don't side with them. Don't side against them. Find whatever common ground you can. If it turns out that there is some "cognitive dissonance," don't let it bother you. If there was anything to cognitive dissonance, Americans would explode watching pharma ads, with narrator insisting you must have the stuff, and voiceover saying it may kill you.

Share this post


Link to post

This paragraph from 'Chapter 11 - Apostasy', I dropped:

"Emboldened, I set foot into an unambiguously opposing site – we are not supposed to do that – and I presently found why. They were so unceasingly nasty that I soon withdrew. They were not nasty at first. They were effusive in their welcome until they discovered that I had no plans to defect. Like Ezekiel with the temple, they showed me about, assuming I was there to come aboard. ‘How do you know I am here to come aboard?’ I asked. “Maybe I am here to kick butt.” I didn’t do that, of course. If you are in someone else’s domain, you must be polite. But neither did I hang around too long, and I won’t be back. Nor do I recommend the course for others. I was a bad boy – pure and simple. I learned my lesson."

Share this post


Link to post
16 minutes ago, Nana Fofana said:

that "primate evolution" picture in your post and WT is not based on any real science, I think, but is ubiquitous in textbooks, and probably highly influential in what people think they know.

It has been proven that our ancesters were blue, but that is all.

 

download.png

Share this post


Link to post

When Gene was transferred to an Assembly Hall in Virginia, he said that Bethel likes to do that. If a given overseer remains too long at an Assmbly Hall, it gets to be known as 'Gene's Assembly Hall.' I told him the only reason I change from my pajamas is BECAUSE it is his Assembly Hall. He said I would like the new guy. I said I don't like him already if he is going to replace him. But, in fact, the new guy turns out to be fine, too.

Last year Gene was at the house and he was admiring the Galileo thermometer on the mantleplace - you know, those ones with the bobbing balls? A week later I called him and asked if he was at the Assembly Hall. He said he was and I told him to stay there. I drove over and gave him the Galileo thermometer as a gift (which is how I ended up with the dust-collecting thing myself). He said he couldn't accept it and I said he could. So he did.

But don't you know that my wife did some work at the Assembly Hall the other day and went into the office and what do you suppose is there? MY (alright - 'his') GALILEO THERMOMETER!!!!

HE LEFT IT! He went to Virginia and left it! I hope he fries or freezes because he couldn't dress properly because he didn't have a Galilio thermometer to tell him what the weather will be!

Moreover, I have no idea if the new guy will appreciate it or not. For all I know, he has a bowling ball on his mantleplace that he admires and wonders what the stupid thing is with the bobbling ornaments! But do you think he will let me take it back? I can hear the charges of 'stealing from God' already if I try it!

 

galileo-2813231_960_720.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
1 hour ago, Nana Fofana said:

Cognitive Dissonance term is so overused imo by ex/anti Jws on the internet that I'm suspicious of it

it is a notion that deserves perhaps a pamphlet but no more. It is the idea that the mind boggles trying to process two notions that contradict - in full or in part.

It isn't entirely bogus, but it is far overrated.

On 2/21/2018 at 1:30 PM, TrueTomHarley said:

If there was anything to cognitive dissonance, Americans would explode watching pharma ads, with narrator insisting you must have the stuff, and voiceover saying it may kill you.

And you are right. It is often used as an insult, as in: "Your cognitive dissonance must be huge to withstand the force of my  brilliant arguments."

Share this post


Link to post
3 hours ago, Nana Fofana said:

Nietzsche

I know less of this fellow than I should, given the influence he supposedly has. I even picked up one of his books, but never read it.

 

3 hours ago, Nana Fofana said:

The frail author of this dire prediction collapsed in a Turin street just a few weeks later, after throwing his arms around a carriage horse to prevent the poor beast from being whipped

This speaks well for him

3 hours ago, Nana Fofana said:

Long experience as both a soldier and a psychologist had taught him, he said, to bring the heavy guns of argument into action.

This doesn't

3 hours ago, Nana Fofana said:

He lived on for more than a decade, empty-eyed and silent, entirely unaware of the readership that was beginning to spread like fire along the gunpowder trail he had laid from book to book. 

It reminds me of Ronald Reagan (not that their personalities were at all the same) who was during his Presidency arguably the most important person alive. Ten year later with Alzheimers, he didn't know who he was.

Tell it to the clueness person who insists 'he doesn't need a crutch.' He certainly does, but is either too proud or stupid to admit it. 

3 hours ago, Nana Fofana said:

Typical Jw, I know, grasping at anything to prop up my outmoded beliefs and lessen the 'cognitive dissonance

Tell it to Alan

Share this post


Link to post

I got diverted by the accusation that first Christians went in for canabalism. In a 'churchy' fashion, christianity.com dramatized, as though the History channel, an early Christian - 'pagan' debate. This made me search out the debate itself, the Octavius of Minicius Felix, from the 2nd century C.E, which contained accusations even more to the point. Surely the early Christians were the victims of 'fake news.'

But in the end I came to regard the whole thing as a red herring and I distilled the 14,000 word document into two paragraphs in the Fake News chapter.

 

 

Share this post


Link to post

Done! Nearly 600 endnotes for the book on Russian persecution. But will they please an English teacher? It is doubtful. She will find commas misplaced, words unnecessarily italicized. Still needs scrutiny. Still it is a relief to finally have the bull work done

Share this post


Link to post

The next step is to improve the overall quality of the endnotes so that I do not come across as the farmer who "knows a thing or two because he's seen a thing or two." The goal is to put Russian sources on eqaul footing with Western ones and to elevate both over Watchtower ones wherever possible. Technically, it is illegal to read (most) Watchtower sources in Russia. And, of course, reports will be more believable to some if they originate from outside agencies.

Share this post


Link to post

I also have a tough time with choosing single or double quotes, often flipping them in editing. Every reader of the Hebrew Scriptures  knows about quotation marks, since there are some passages with as many as four encased. Then if you want to quote the mess, you must add a surrounding layer.

Share this post


Link to post

Inserting extra endnotes into a completed list is a MAJOR PAIN. All succeeding numbers of the chapter must be updated, synchronized with the new list, and it is ever so easy to screw up!*

*so I am told by those who have made that error.

Share this post


Link to post

When you are several edits in, you spot an awkward bit of clunk and you say, as did Mozart to the house musician, 'that doesn't quite work, does it?' And then - if you have behaved lately and the very heavens are smiling upon you, not to mention @The Librarian,you correct it effortlessly, as did Mozart.

Share this post


Link to post

Any writer knows that it is almost impossible to proofread your own work. This is because, when it consists of thousands of words, you tend to read, not what is there, but what you think is there, and you do not recall yourself making any mistakes – if you had, you would have corrected them long ago. So you must enlist volunteer proofreaders unless you are wealthy or are going the big business route.

I used five. Three were known to me personally and two through social media.Yes, my motto for social media is that everyone online is a liar, but that is only a default opening assumption. Over time you can sort many of them out. How have my five deported themselves?

Persons that you would entrust with such a project – inviting commentary as well as mere proofreading – you are going to find are not just sitting on their hands, but are busy. This has proven to be the case.

One, an elder, excused himself almost from the getgo. Portions made him uncomfortable. I was surprised of it in his case, because he raved about Tom Irregardless and Me, but I was not surprised in the generic. The new book is unswervingly loyal to both Jehovah and his visible organization, but it does go in some places not routinely gone, and there will be some uneasy about that.

Another one, also an elder, got back to me two months later. He also loved Irregardless, more so even than the brother before, but he had been insanely busy chasing around doing many things. He said I should not give up on him. He would yet get to it.

A third, who said she reads voraciously, returned a couple of chapters promptly with both valuable observations and proofreading. She said she was a bit uncomfortable at how a few things were stated. I told her it was the first chapter and I was relating without comment how some others presented matters and that I would be addressing them later on. Afterwards, she sailed away (literally, almost) and said she would be willing to do more, but it would be a while.

A fourth, who has spent time in Russia, returned a chapter or two with good commentary, and I forwarded another. This one sat for a time, because, as with the others, he is extremely busy, but it just came back.

The final one, the most prolific, to whom I sent some of the most sensitive material, returned in good order three chapters, but then was distracted by a major personal event, and after attending to it she left the country on vacation.

I appreciate them all – I truly do. The one in Russia even helped me out with translating some phrases – some others I let AI handle because I liked the ‘Boris and Natashia’ flavor returned. 
The book cannot be too far off, it really cannot. Final tweaking, removing redundancies, injecting new salient points, and shaping up the endnotes, but overall, not too far off.

Share this post


Link to post

I scored a significant coup after my post about busy proofreaders. Another person of good judgement and experience came forward to say she could do it. Already she has given very good insight on two chapters.

She also spotted and recommended deletion of something I had put in deliberately. It was too crass, she thought, or more specifically, some would find it sacreligious.

I intended it as a hilarious joke made to powerfully illustrate a main theme, and it IS hilarious - I ran it before on FB and people told me so. I write primarily for moderns and skeptic-minded people, and do not always take into account deeply religious people, on the basis that there aren't many in my neck of the woods. But there are elsewhere, and if I offend some unncecessarily, it - well - why go there?

I have made no effort to remove my personality from the book, and my personality is a little 'out there' - I know it. So here and there one must tone it down a little. It is enough on display elsewhere.

There are plenty of people on the internet who make very valid points, only to find them rejected because readers resent how ill-mannered the person is. I want to stay far away from that pitfall.

Share this post


Link to post

And what was the sacreligious portion that I deleted that I wasn't going to at first but finally decided to take my proofreader's recommendation and do it since it could be offensive to some?

Here it is:

Discipline is a tough sell today. It is decidedly unpopular. The need for it is a constant of life, however. Let us play with the notion as we consider the prophet Malachi. Did he have teenagers? How else can one explain his style of writing? The Book of Malachi is the last book of the Old Testament – a short work of just four chapters. The entire book is read in less time than a quarter of this chapter:

I love you, says the LORD; but you say, “How do you love us?”

And if I am a master, where is the fear due to me? So says the LORD of hosts to you, O priests, who disdain my name. But you ask, “How have we disdained your name?”

“‘By presenting polluted food on my altar.’ ‘And you say: “How have we polluted you?”’

By offering defiled food on my altar! You ask, “How have we defiled it?”

You have wearied the LORD with your words, yet you say, “How have we wearied him?”

Return to me, that I may return to you, says the LORD of hosts. But you say, “Why should we return?”

Can anyone rob God? But you are robbing me! And you say, “How have we robbed you?”

Your words are too much for me, says the LORD. You ask, “What have we spoken against you?”

Enough already! Everything is challenged! Everything is hurled back in God’s face. Just for kicks, turn the page. Find yourself in the gospels and roll that attitude onto Mary, the mother of Jesus. If we were to do so, what might one read?

“In the sixth month, the angel Gabriel was sent from God to… Mary. And coming to her, he said, “Hail, favored one! The Lord is with you.” (Luke 1:26-28)

“In what way is he with me?” she shoots back.

Had she answered that way, it would not be Mary remembered as the mother of our Lord. It might be Olga or Tatiana.

.......That's it. I think it's funny. Others have agreed. But remember that Mary is the MOTHER OF GOD to some and just the HINT of something bad or disrespectful on her part is to wave a red flag before a bull. I won't go there.

The Haggai part is fine. But the Mary part..... You know, I am not going to ax it entirely. I will modify it so that the joke is suggested to those who don't mind going there but isn't actually made. It won't be quite the zinger I wanted but it will be servicable.

Share this post


Link to post

The book is done and I am just awaiting a few ducks to fall into place. Meanwhile, tweaking is possible.

In the section 'Final Acknowledgements,' after all the heavy lifting has been done, and the tone turns light, I am wondering if I should not include @The Librarian- the old hen - (in just those words and then some)  as among those I ought to thank, for providing me a forum in which I got to hone my craft among some who I knew would unfailingly throw things back in my face, and so I could thereby better gauge anything I wrote.

I mean, the reasons for not doing it are obvious, but I do not shy from controversial topics in the book.

Of course, I would throw in at the end something to the effect of "I am testing her patience still, in that she is really a he."

 

Share this post


Link to post
On 4/7/2018 at 12:52 PM, TrueTomHarley said:

The book is done and I am just awaiting a few ducks to fall into place. Meanwhile, tweaking is possible.

Your proofreader sounds like an editor, too. Hope all goes well with the book.

Will it be an e-book, like your others? If so, you should be able to take edits from readers on a forum such as this and incorporate them into any revisions, if necessary. 9_9  I expect it will already be in good shape. It sounded like you wanted to be extra careful and accurate.

Share this post


Link to post
4 hours ago, JW Insider said:

Your proofreader sounds like an editor, too. Hope all goes well with the book.

Will it be an e-book, like your others? If so, you should be able to take edits from readers on a forum such as this and incorporate them into any revisions, if necessary. 9_9  I expect it will already be in good shape. It sounded like you wanted to be extra careful and accurate.

Thanks. It actually is done, save for formatting and upload, and it is free. It includes links to my other two ebooks after the main text, in the 'About the Author' section, and those are not free. At some point I have to make a buck here somewhere if I do not want to spend my end of days at Mickey D's. Not that the day of reckoning is close at hand. it is not, but I want to keep it at bay as long as I can. It is the first I will get into print and that version will not be free. The Kindle version also probably not. I don't think they allow it. I've not done Amazon before, only Smashwords.

No Fake News was written in haste to support and draw into the first book, and i was shocked going back to see what a mess it was. I rewrote it. It is approximately one third original, one third reshuffled and tweaked, and one third already written pulled in from elsewhere. Some is brand new but not much. 

I do have an excellent person proofing who also makes observations that have proved most helpful.

I truly think they will both be up within a week. The Russian one I want to direct to places where I even think it could do some good.

 

Share this post


Link to post

Whoa! There's one. Here is why it pays to check your work just one final time:

The book will say: "Some recognized scholar of the greater world might submit a guest article on nearly any outlet, but it will not happen on RT.org. One must apply Christian principles in order to have a voice."

Um - you wanna make that JW.org? Because it is a book on the Russian situation, and I am a Witness, I am routinely using both, and here got them mixed up.

It sort of changes the meaning, doesn't it?

Share this post


Link to post
On 4/7/2018 at 12:52 PM, TrueTomHarley said:

The book is done and I am just awaiting a few ducks to fall into place. Meanwhile, tweaking is possible.

I have read the Introduction and the First Chapter of Tom Harley's book Dear Mr. Putin – Jehovah’s Witnesses Write Russia. (At smashwords.com). I have only skimmed some of the remaining portions. Unfortunately, I'm called to another project/assignment and won't get back to reading it for quite a while, so I wanted to say something here while it is fresh in mind.

I wanted to say that I really like the book. You, Tom, have been able to use a more serious tone but you were still true to your "natural" style, which is a great style for this subject, and for your other two books. I was very impressed with the fact that you tackled a subject as big as this without falling into the trap of Western superiority. On the other hand, moral superiority comes through, as it should, but without a self-righteous tone. You have even honestly admitted a few weaknesses of our organization without trying to sound as if you are somehow personally better or more insightful.

You make a good representative and it's an excellent defense of Witnesses. Most importantly, it relentlessly highlights the absurdity of our situation in Russia. Highly recommended.

Share this post


Link to post
2 hours ago, JW Insider said:

I have read the Introduction and the First Chapter of Tom Harley's book Dear Mr. Putin – Jehovah’s Witnesses Write Russia. (At smashwords.com). I have only skimmed some of the remaining portions. Unfortunately, I'm called to another project/assignment and won't get back to reading it for quite a while, so I wanted to say something here while it is fresh in mind.

I wanted to say that I really like the book. You, Tom, have been able to use a more serious tone but you were still true to your "natural" style, which is a great style for this subject, and for your other two books. I was very impressed with the fact that you tackled a subject as big as this without falling into the trap of Western superiority. On the other hand, moral superiority comes through, as it should, but without a self-righteous tone. You have even honestly admitted a few weaknesses of our organization without trying to sound as if you are somehow personally better or more insightful.

You make a good representative and it's an excellent defense of Witnesses. Most importantly, it relentlessly highlights the absurdity of our situation in Russia. Highly recommended.

Thanks for the kind words. The ebook version (which is all there is at present) is free and can be found here:

    Hello guest!

Share this post


Link to post

The first one I told of the book was Chivchalov. I expected, at most, an 'attaboy,' but he retweeted on Twitter and shared on FB.

In response to an email, I answered in part:

I am glad if brothers like the book. But it is not primarily for them, but for others who can come up to speed and maybe even alleviate the situation.
 
I am taking several days to correct various typos and blips. As you know, it is almost impossible to proofread your own work, no matter how many times you read it, because you tend to read, not what is there, but what you think is there. All writing passed through some proofreaders and then a final self-check, but even they (and me again) missed things.
 
None are consequential. The book is fine and probably potent for distribution as is. But it is not perfect. I will do corrects before I try to pump it to journalists and others. It will never be 'perfect.' I am too inconsistent myself with things like quote marks, sometimes opting for single marks, other times double, for reasons that change and can best be attributed to my own wishy-washyness. Dashes vs semi-colons are inconsistent, too. For now, everyone can probably live with it.

Share this post


Link to post
2 hours ago, JW Insider said:

You make a good representative and it's an excellent defense of Witnesses. Most importantly, it relentlessly highlights the absurdity of our situa?tion in Russia. Highly recommended.

Oh, and the inside scoop on all ebook or print authors is that they positively grovel for online reviews.

 

grovel.jpg

photo: Business Insider

Share this post


Link to post

The ebook is written but that does not mean it cannot, being an ebook, be tweaked after date of delivery. Other than for matters of publication, I will do this very sparingly, for it seems that more would be 'cheating.' I did find a way of explaining neutrality that i like, however, and I managed to insert it:

"All human governments will drop the ball and usually it is a bowling ball; this fact explains why many of Jehovah’s Witnesses become JehovahÂ’s Witnesses in the first place. Thereafter, were they individually to contemplate their own toes, they might conclude that those on their right or left foot appear most vulnerable. But they strive not to bring such matters into the congregation and thus disturb its peace, opting instead to focus on the fact that human governments of all stripes drop the ball but GodÂ’s kingdom does not."

Speaking of punctuation, I am coming to grips with the fact that I am inconsistent in their use. One must not blow it off as nothing (as I am initially inclined to do) but one must face the fact that there are plenty of people who care about such things

Sometimes I use double quotes, sometimes single. Sometimes put titles in apostrophies, sometimes not. Dashes I regard as the tool of the lazy devil, who can't quite figure out the precise relationship of two adjacent phrases and so simply flings a dash at the mess to get it out of his hair. I'll go back in and fix it all. It will take a while.

I will try to get it as close to exact as I can before pitching it to journalists, newsmakers and such.

    Hello guest!

Share this post


Link to post
4 hours ago, Nana Fofana said:

ouch.

Probably I should have cleaned all that stuff up before release. I got impatient. The writing is fine, at least as fine as I can make ti. Punctuation is another matter.

I am going through it all - it will take a while - to clean that stuff up. it actually is not that hard when you focus on it. It is just tedious. These things should improve on a daily basis.

Share this post


Link to post
2 hours ago, Nana Fofana said:

That you can even articulate the 'dash' problem with that much precision is mysterious and impressive to me.   :_(

I am very proud to say that I like everything about @TrueTomHarley. In fact, to say I am a sycophant of him is to sell me short.

I find him - well, 'dashing.'

Share this post


Link to post
3 hours ago, Nana Fofana said:

Evidently just one of the occupational hazards in the True Tom Harley game ! 

O.K., out of pity for your boredom with the sycophancy, I guess I can -grudgingly-  set aside my worship long enough to point out-

hoose·gow
ˈho͞osɡou/
noun
NORTH AMERICANinformal
  1. a prison.
     
    When I was back on that page, anyway, I think you had "hoosecow" instead.
    [unless maybe u meant as inside joke on 'the 'goyim' or something?]

Your wish is my command. It is done. Download it anew to see.

Share this post


Link to post

Like a Russian artison with matryoshka dolls, I have encapsuled double within single quotes within double quotes. Like a scientist with CRISPR technology, I have stretched out some dashes and truncated others. Like a proctologist, I have operated on colons, making some periods, commas and dashes - and snipping some out altogether. 

Whew

Finally the book is ready and all bugs are out.

 

800px-DGJ_4705_-_Russian_Matryoshka_(4312413546).jpg

Share this post


Link to post

The book quotes a few times, not often, from Watchtower publications. Technically that makes it extremist and it can be like the broken tail light the cop stops you for as a pretext to making more serious trouble.

Hence there is an identical 2nd version for anyone who wants to avoid the problem with all such quotes replaced with 'redacted' or 'redacted for reader safety' or the like. Both are found at

    Hello guest!

Enjoy.

The stopgap measure will only apply to Russia, because anywhere else you can read a Watchtower quotation without being thought extremist. And since relatively few Russians speak English anyway, the release of the 2nd Dear Mr. Putin is mostly symbolic. The book covers are identical, save only for the message in the orange ball. (below)

Not only does the new version not violate any extremist law (unless and until the book itself is declared extremist) but it serves to highlight the silliness of it all, for context nearly always indicates that the eliminated quotes are perfectly innocuous. However, every effort is made to be deeply respectful of the government. In no way could this be described as a protest book. It also strives to relate things from a Russian perspective.

Dear Mr Putin (1) (1).jpg

Dear Mr Putin Russian edition.jpg

Share this post


Link to post

Kermit Way from the book Tom Irregardless and Me was a real person, referred to by his real name. At his funeral it was said that, not only was he a gentleman, but also that he was a gentle man. It was true. A more refreshing person would be hard to find.

Kermit is the one who successfully dissuades a brother from using the word 'Irregardless.' This also is true. He told the account to me, and I am the one who unsuccessfully, 30 years later, tried to get someone else to stop saying it.

Alas, unlike in Kermit's day, the word WAS found in the dictionary. True, it was labeled 'irregular,' but that was a point far too subtle for the one I was speaking with. #TomIrregardless

Share this post


Link to post

Unexpectedly, jw-russia.org was removed from the list of banned extemism sites. It had only been on it for three months. it is a news-only site.

Practically speaking, this means that I can restore all the deletions made from that source in the 'extremist free' version of 'Dear Mr. Putin - Jehovah's Witnesses Write Russia.'

 

    Hello guest!

 

The original is still risky, though, as there are a few quotes from Watchtower publications. Mostly, though, both books confine themselves to purely secular sources. Both are free and it is hoped that they may somehow influence things for the better.

Share this post


Link to post

Okay, do I understand this correctly? Dennis Christensen presided over a Bible study meeting at a Kingdom Hall in Russia one year ago. He has been jailed for a year in pre-trial detention, after police broke in with SWAT team gear to arrest him. Several motions to have him released on his own recognizance have proved unsuccessful and bank accounts have been frozen, leaving his wife to fend for herself. Only now, after a year in prison, is his

    Hello guest!
, having been postponed several times.

And…a key prosecution witness is an individual who will testify out of sight, his or her voice garbled by electronic means. Are you kidding me? For a Bible teacher? Is it prosecution theatrics to plant the notion that Jehovah’s Witnesses are as dangerous as the mob?

And then…more evidence that this escalation is unheard of, at least in the Orel court, it turns out that no one knows how to make the machine do what it is supposed to. The witness’s testimony is garbled to such an extent that nobody could understand it, and the trial was postponed until they either got someone who knew what he was doing or brought in a better machine. “Try speaking in syllables,” the judge (or someone) had said, but it was no good.

Look, you want to fear the authorities, “for it is not without purpose that it bears the sword,” and it sure has been bearing it lately with Jehovah’s Witnesses, the subject of numerous SWAT team searches in various parts of Russia. One tries not to invoke images of Boris and Natashia from Bullwinkle, but with reports like these it is hard to banish the thought.

Prosecutors attempted to restrict news media coverage to the trial. But Dennis doesn’t see himself as a criminal and stated such secrecy would impede a fair trial. The judge agreed with this and denied the motion of the prosecution.

    Hello guest!

    Hello guest!

Share this post


Link to post

After three books, you would think I would have learned not to release them prematurely. You would think I would learn that reading them through a few times and handing them to proof-readers is not enough. I think this book needed more corrections than the other two combined. Maybe because it was more ambitious. Maybe because most paragraphs weren’t written concurrently and many first appeared somewhere else in modified form. Even the ’extremism free’ version fell short of its goal. I have fixed it.

It’s embarrassing. And I apologize to whoever downloaded it. I got impatient, is all I can say. Download it again, if you will. The price is the same: free. All errors are out, and most were not really errors in the first place, but just clunky expressions or oddball punctuation that I brought under control.

Hmm. Is there a search tool that looks for ending a sentence with a preposition? I still have a few of those, but other than an English teaching harrumphing over it, the sin is not that great. And the education chapter strikes me as a little too unfocused. But overall, I am happy with Dear Mr. Putin, and whoever has downloaded it, I invite them to do it again.

Share this post


Link to post

  • Forum Statistics

    62,440
    Total Topics
    118,222
    Total Posts
  • Member Statistics

    16,589
    Total Members
    1,592
    Most Online
    Miagooci
    Newest Member
    Miagooci
    Joined

×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

Terms of Service Confirmation Terms of Use Privacy Policy Guidelines We have placed cookies on your device to help make this website better. You can adjust your cookie settings, otherwise we'll assume you're okay to continue.