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Sunday, July 3, 2011

The Lazy Farmer rants on mythology and culture but doesn't really know what he is talking about and didn't really proof read his post because he wants to eat his oatmeal before it gets cold

Yesterday morning I was looking for my brother. I found his car parked with the radio tuned to KBOO. He was listening to the old time country-western music show that is every Saturday morning.
On the dash was a book on pirates. I think it was called "Pirate Nation." (I started reading the book. In the middle of course...)
As the title indicates it was a history of pirates. It had lots of quotes from the aforementioned pirates. It broke down a lot of the old pirate stories and compared the mythology with reality. For example, not all pirates killed everybody and sunk the ships. Sometimes captains would be given back a smaller ship or have their rum taken but be given compensation. Sometimes they killed everyone...
It also discussed the motivations for being a pirate and the amazingly democratic pirate society. A society armed to the teeth and used to brutality can be a democratic society. No one steals from you if they know you will kill them.
One other funny thing I picked up from the pirate book was that their leaders were reasonably well educated. My brother noted that they had a better understanding of Christianity than most modern Evangelicals. I would concur.
I was listening to a cowboy song and reading a pirate book and the story of the Hispanic guy's pilgrimage to see the Pope was fresh in my mind.
I wonder if a major problem with our society and culture is that we have killed our mythology. We tear down our stories in the name of realism and the whole concept of historical realism is in my opinion a sophomoric conceit. 
The unavoidable bias of the historian colors our history and it becomes what is written.
Look at my mower story. I purposely implied that the Hispanic guy's prayer gave me the good fortune to find the mower I needed when I needed it. I ignored all the annoying things that went wrong the rest of the day. For example my employee putting the wrong disks on the old mower or my inability to get my hay picked up yesterday. I wanted it to reinforce the family mythology, which I have purposely encouraged.
I think encouraging the family faith in God gives us a common bond and lets us explain random bad luck as a challenge to our faith and an opportunity to show our faith. And we can attribute random good luck to divine providence and answered prayers.
It is our traditional culture and it encourages us to look beyond ourselves. To have higher hopes and dreams and to help our neighbors.
And it is so much less work subscribing to the modern be kind to mother earth and support MLK and white people are bad and science is truth and if the truth changes it is because we got new information type religion promoted in modern culture.
I read a story about a pirate captain who captured a ship. There were princesses the ship. It turned out that the princesses loved pirates so the pirates married the princesses and there was a potential story for a Disney  movie.  In reality the pirates raped a bunch of slaves from India and some of the women jumped overboard rather than be raped and lots of people were brutally murdered.
But that is not the mythology.
Likewise, cowboys were one held up as honest and rugged individuals and admired. Some Native Americans were nice to the Pilgrims and had a big dinner. Other Indians scalped settlers but were run off by Cowboys who wore white hats.
Of course reality was much different.
Mythology would blunt the edges to promote ideals of honesty, bravery, and inspire ideals of self-reliance and leadership.
History should probably strike a balance.
Revisionism rewrites the official biased History to match the bias/agenda of the current culture.
Anyway, I've kind of lost interest in the whole rant.
The bottom line is that I think our religion/mythology was tossed not because of its lack of validity but because college professors discovered that it was a way to manipulate sheltered middle class students into being impressed by the professors great knowledge and thus leading to sex with impressionable young co-eds.
Tell me I'm wrong...

5 comments:

  1. Dern, Budd; you sure get a lot of mileage out of a bowl of oatmeal!

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  2. No kidding Gorges but I wonder what was in that oatmeal?

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  3. Certainly more interesting and entertaining than reading the back of the cereal box.

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  4. This comment is for the whole blog that I just finished quick-reading in 4 days.
    Thanks for making me laugh a lot, both directly and indirectly, like when you made me think you could get a good crop of oil and proteins without planting a single soybean, since you seem to spill so much engine oil and your own blood in the field!

    I felt privileged to see your daughter grow from 8 to 10 in a matter of days, but although you seem to keep up to date on the price of hay and grain, you should adjust for inflation when you ask every year for $1.2 million. ^-^

    Enjoy your 4th of July with your family!

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  5. Peanut Gallery: Ok, I get a bit carried away at times. I was reading about pirates and I had like 6 cups of coffee!

    Chimel: Thanks for the comment. I am glad you enjoyed my rambling commentary on my life.
    So far I have raised $42 from donations. I think perhaps inflation adjustments are irrelevant at this point...I could just say 5 million. That would work!

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