Tag Archives: Tenochtitlan

FROM BOSTON (where the American Revolution Began) A THREAT AND A WARNING—“WHAT CHANCE WOULD HIS [TRUMP’S] OUTSIDER MOVEMENT REALLY HAVE AGAINST THE FULL RESOURCES OF THE US GOVERNMENT? Demands for Reform will be met with Tanks in the Street, eh?

Trump could win — but not necessarily the White House (Evan Horowitz, Boston Globe, October 21, 2016)

One widening fear is that Trump simply won’t accept defeat, instead doubling down on his talk of a “rigged election,” leading to an uprising against the established political order. But there’s an obvious problem with this approach: It doesn’t lead to victory. What chance would his outsider movement really have against the full resources of the US government? And where’s the money in it?

https://www.bostonglobe.com/news/politics/2016/10/21/donald-trump-going-win/W9OJE03yH9FiB9fD5QMKxN/story.html

WHAT CHANCE WOULD HIS OUTSIDER MOVEMENT REALLY HAVE AGAINST THE FULL RESOURCES OF THE US GOVERNMENT?  This sounds like a threat against the people of the United States, to me: QUESTION OUR AUTHORITY, CHALLENGE THE LEGITIMACY OF OUR ELECTIONS, AND YOU WILL DIE…. am I right?  Ever so quietly, Mr. Horowitz is telling the American people: if you dare to question HILLARY’S authority, or the legitimacy of HILLARY’S election—then the government of the United States will bring out its tanks and run over you in the streets, right?  Just like Tienamen Square…. NOT so very long ago….like 27 years?

This was a followup to Horowitz’ curiously dated “October 17, 2016” article entitled:

“When you call the Election Rigged, Everyone Loses”

discussing Donald Trump’s comments during the Third Debate, which took place on “October 19, 2016” in which Trump refused to accept, in advance, the results of an election that hadn’t happened yet:

https://www.bostonglobe.com/news/politics/2016/10/17/when-you-call-election-rigged-everyone-loses/CxbmV9qmQCIGxNANlhM20J/story.html

I have to say, I just couldn’t disagree more!  When a major political candidate finally acknowledges, in 2016, that there is a possibility that the elections have been “rigged” or at the very least DRAMATICALLY manipulated, he is simply stating a completely obvious and widely known fact.

We need to eschew all convenient lies and accept what Al Gore might call certain “Inconvenient Truths”—elections in America since 2000 have been questionable when seen in the best possible light, but more likely constitute outrageous “continental and oceanic” frauds against the people from coast to coast.

The Boston Globe never (in recent memory) met a Socialist it didn’t like… but it is still disheartening to think that the City of the Sons of Liberty has sunk this low.  This is, quite simply, the diametric opposite of the Spirit of ’76 in Eighteenth Century Boston (and Virginia) which led to the American Revolution, when Patrick Henry famously intoned from the pulpit of St. John’s Church in Richmond:

Is life so dear or peace so sweet as to be purchased at the price of chains and slavery? Forbid it, Almighty God! I know not what course others may take, but as for me, give me liberty, or give me death!

A very dear old friend wrote back to me, after I announced that Trump’s position against acceptance had finally convinced me to vote for him, after many months of vacillation and hesitation:

OMG!  Maybe that should be WTF. This is what you got from the last debate?! How utterly depressing.  .  .   .   .   .  If you honestly think this clown would be safe in world politics, I fear for your sanity. I can’t begin to express what a disaster I think he would be as President, except to say that in a million years, I would never have believed I would find myself voting for Hillary, but he made it a necessity. Just one more thing to despise this bloviated windbag and egomaniacal twit!

I don’t necessarily deny that there are clownish and twitty things about Trump, but if he truly stands outside the current governmental-elite system, then he is worth his weight in god: I just couldn’t believe that he really was until October 19, 2016.

And, does being a Clown or a Twit really disqualify anyone from office?  I rather think history is against that.

Trump is often compared to Hitler in exactly this way, and the notion of Hitler as a clown is as old as the Three Stooges’ early production called “Nasty Spy” and Charlie Chaplin’s brilliant “The Great Dictator”—-not to mention later “Springtime for Hitler” and “The Producers”….or a thousand shorter skits involving Monty Python or other British Comedians.

Caricature and ridicule are very socially interesting and ritually powerful, as our dear old professor Dr. Victoria Reifler Bricker hath taught us to say, and understand.

The role of Royal Court Jesters in Royal Courts and the interplay between Kings and Court Jesters is likewise well-known and documented anthropologically and historically everywhere. The Maya God K— whether called Tezcatlipoca or Kakupacal, is iconographically represented as “The Jester God” and he is in fact the chief Deity of Mesoamerican Kings and Rulers, from the ancient Ahauwob of the Peten to the Huey Tlatoani of Tenochtitlan. Does that make them undignified or less royal, or does it inform us of the nature of nobility and royalty? What does it tell us that the words “Sac” or “Iztac” refer to things mythical and imaginary, and otherworldly and royal?

Hitler was obviously an actor who rehearsed a role. So was Ronald Reagan. Recently republished photographs from he 1920s show that Hitler learned his oratorical style and practiced it privately in front of the Camera. Well??? Some of his poses, while learning, were definitely funny. Most actors have to practice before becoming capable of world class, memorable presentations… Many people criticize Trump because he is not an actor—the express and explicit criticism is “he does not know how to act in public” or “he does not know how to act like a President.”

Adolph Hitler did not know how to “Act like a Fuhrer” when he was a painter or a corporal in Kaiser Wilhelm’s Army. Who disputes that?

Every lawyer who appears in Court either “represents” or “acts on behalf of” another—and a lawyer’s acting is not metaphoric, but in fact had better be Oscar winning or else the lawyer loses…. Hillary is a lawyer and she knows how to “act” her role much better than Trump. We expect our rulers to be excellent actors. We accept that they should wear costumes and take positions (i.e. pose artificially) and effectively dance around their enemies.

Congress Assembled “Acts”, as do Courts of Law, and “Leaders” in Parliamentary Politics, so what is surprising that Ritual and Theatre are so intimately linked. “Tragedy” was originally the name for the rituals of Dionysus…. So was Hitler a Tragic Figure or a Comedian? He may have been some of both. Hitler, like Benito Mussolini, was born a common man, not an aristocrat like Franklin Delano Roosevelt or Winston Spencer Churchill, who was born at Blenheim Palace, home of the Dukes of Marlborough for three hundred years now.

What seems certain is that, whether you regard him as a clown or a tragedian, Hitler’s “acting” is so memorable that it made an indelible mark on the world, and that, out of the 20th Century, even if Stalin, Churchill, and Roosevelt are memories consigned to Marx’s old Midden Heap or Dustbin of History…. the name and role of Adolph Hitler may well be remembered with mystery, awe, and fear…. and that is what my old Harvard Linguistics Professor, the late Calvert Watkins, would call “imperishable fame”, or “the immortality of the Gods”….

I think what I really took away from the Third Debate on 19 October 2016 (which Evan Horowitz apparently knew all about on 17 October 2016? to write about it in the Boston Globe?) is that Trump may be enough of a clown to really ACT FOR or REPRESENT me (and 150,000,000-200,000,000 or so) other “traditional Americans” against the current global elite.

For those of us in that category (150,000,000 or so “Traditional Americans”), the past eight years have truly been an abomination marking the final crystallization of life into the future predicted by  Huxley’s Brave New World and Orwell’s 1984.

Clowns stand, throughout the symbolism and iconography of the world, for established orders TURNED UPSIDE DOWN—and THAT is exactly what we need in America today—the Bush-Clinton-Obama Oligarchy MUST be stood on its head and shaken, the course of history must be reversed, and maybe this  possibly over-sexed Orange-haired clown is just the man to do what needs to be done….

For All Souls Day (aka “Day of the Dead” and/or Feast of the Faithful Departed): Human Sacrifice in Africa Today

Should we be surprised that Human Sacrifice, Slavery, and Cannibalism are Prevalent All Over Africa, today in late 2013?  In Colonial Mexico and Central America, after the Spanish Conquest, there is good evidence that Human Sacrifice persisted in many rural areas for at least 200 years after the Spanish Conquest despite continual Spanish Rule and the violent and often brutal suppression of the Native Mesoamerican priesthood, the tragic burning of ancient libraries, and the systematic destruction of temples.  There are many parallels between the practices of Human Sacrifice, Cannibalism, and Slavery in Africa and Mesoamerica, as Sir James G. Frazer noted in the Golden Bough, and as in fact was apparent even to the Spanish Conquistadors themselves, as in for example the writings of Bernal Diaz del Castillo.  

Child sacrifice, reported as widespread and common in Africa up through the present day (and even as a “thriving commercial business” in Uganda and Nigeria), was common among the prehispanic Mesoamericans.  There are relics surviving at least until the 1980s (by my own personal observations) of the importance of live children “bound with ropes and croaking like frogs” under the table of the Cha-Chaac, the modern Yucatec Maya Rain Ceremony, during years following the discovery of massive offerings of childrens’ skeletons under the altar of Tlaloc (the Aztec raingod) in the Templo Mayor excavations of Aztec Tenochtitlan in the heart of Mexico City.  Habitual child sacrifice was recorded at least as far north as among the Natchez of the Mississippi Valley up through the final obliteration and extermination of the Natchez by the French in the late 1720s.  Vestiges of Child Sacrifice (including the Sacrifice of adult children, such as the sons of the Kings of Israel and Judah who were made to “walk through the fire” in the Books of Chronicles and Kings) occur throughout the Bible, and legends of Jewish cannibalism of children are part of the “blood libel” that persisted at least through 15th century throughout Europe (consider the story of “Little St. Hugh” of Lincoln, which was one of many stories which led to the expulsion of the Jews from England in the 1320s.  (I had an uncle named “Hugh”, who now counts among the “Faithful Departed”).   As highly prejudicial and undocumented as the charges against Mediaeval European Jewry may be, the archaeological evidence recovered at by Harvard archaeologists at Carthage in Tunisia and by many excavations throughout Syria and Lebanon all document the ubiquity of child sacrifice among the Phoenicians  (most closely related by their alphabet and other customs to the Israelites) and all other Western Semitic peoples of the Bronze and Iron Ages.  Whether this heritage could support the legendary evidence that the Jews carried child sacrifice with them after the diaspora into Western Europe is, without archaeological evidence, a matter of mere conjecture.

Leaving Aside Slavery and Cannibalism, and considering only Human Sacrifice and Ritual Killing (including child sacrifice throughout Africa, and leaving aside the highly controversial questions of racially or politically motivated murders in, for example, Liberia, Sierra Leon, and above all in post-Apartheid South Africa, as of fourteen months ago, the United Nations Commission on Human Rights made this rather timid, cautious, almost apologetic report, allowing as how human sacrifice might violate the UN Charters on Individual Human Rights even if it infringes on the rights to freedom of religion and exercise of human conscience: http://hrbrief.org/2012/09/the-practice-of-ritual-killings-and-human-sacrifice-in-africa/

The Practice of Ritual Killings and Human Sacrifice in Africa

September 6, 2012 By \\

Despite the African Charter on Human and People’s Rights’ that provides an individual is entitled to respect for his life and integrity of his person, ritual killings and the practice of human sacrifice continue in several African countries. These practices entail the hunting down, mutilation, and murder of the most vulnerable people in society**, including people with disabilities, women, and children. Reports indicate that killings of this nature occur in Nigeria, Uganda, Swaziland, Liberia, Botswana, South Africa, Tanzania, Namibia, and Zimbabwe. Because of the secrecy involved in ritual sacrifices, a majority of these incidents go unreported and uninvestigated. Anti-sacrifice advocates face an uphill battle in combating these rituals because the practices are largely denied and touch on cultural underpinnings, resulting in an ideological conflict between protection of human rights and respect for the beliefs and practices of other cultures.

Those who practice sacrifice and ritual killings believe them to be acts of spiritual fortification. Motivations to carry out these acts include the use of human body parts for medicinal purposes and the belief that human body parts possess supernatural powers that bring prosperity and protection. In Uganda, reports indicate that child sacrifice is a business where the wealthy pay witch doctors to conduct sacrifices in an effort to expand their fortunes. In Swaziland and Liberia, politicians allegedly commission ritual killings to improve their odds in elections. In parts of South Africa, ritual killings are culturally accepted, and the practice is often not reported by community members.

Questions of cultural relativism may arise with respect to ritual killings because they may be linked with religious beliefs. Article 8 of the African Charter on Human and People’s Rights guarantees freedom of conscience, the profession and free practice of religion. The article also states that “No one may, subject to law and order, be submitted to measures restricting the exercise of these freedoms.” While a broad reading of Article 8 guaranteeing the right to religious freedom could theoretically permit ritual killings for religious reasons, the “subject to law and order” clause may be invoked to limit the free practice of religion with respect to ritual killings. Furthermore, reading the Charter in its entirety supports a prohibition on ritual killings. For instance, Article 5 states that every individual shall be “entitled to respect for his life and the integrity of his person.” If ritual killings were permitted as an acceptable exercise of religious freedom, the door is opened to many of potential human rights violations on the basis of religion.

In response to recent reports of ritual killings allegedly conducted by some traditional healers, other healers have spoken out against ritual killings, arguing that those practices are a disgrace to the history and culture of African medicine men and healers. In March 2012, Sierra Leone’s union of traditional healers met to put forward their campaign against ritual killings. Since the union’s founding in 2008, their mandate has always been to stop indiscriminate killings and afflictions of the innocent.

Activists rallying against ritual killings are calling for stronger protections, including legislation that would allow for the regulation of traditional healers. Some countries, such as Uganda, Rwanda, and Nigeria have taken steps to begin regulate traditional healers, but regulation is not widespread. Appropriately regulating traditional healers could provide necessary protection for individuals seeking care from traditional healers and could hold healers accountable for unlawful acts, such as ritual killings. Furthermore, regulation could provide protection for traditional healers, for example, with respect to intellectual property rights.

As they have done for centuries, traditional healers continue to fulfill an important role of providing beneficial medical services to communities. However, the practice of ritual killings and human sacrifice goes against the fundamental human rights norm of ensuring respect for an individual’s life and integrity of person. Although the African Charter guarantees the right to freely practice one’s religion, ritual killings are not permissible on this basis. The positive contributions of traditional healers to many African societies should not be compromised by the practice of ritual killings. Activists and governments can ensure respect for the human rights of all individuals by working to ensure transparency and accountability among traditional healers.

**CEL III Note Added: is it even worth mentioning that the minority Whites in post-Apartheid South Africa, not to mention any whites foolish enough to remain in Zimbabwe or Namibia, are among the most vulnerable members of society?

In Thomas Stearns Eliot’s Voice: “And still we call this Friday Good”—a reading from East Coker, part IV

The Dripping Blood our Only Drink, The Bloody Flesh our Only Food, In Spite of which we like to think, that we are sound, substantial flesh and blood.  Again–in spite of that, we call this Friday Good….

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o-9gcauuboc

Does Comparative Religion show the Gospel of Christ to be false, or to be true? If there are variants of his history in many corners of the world, is this evidence of depth or shallowness?  I beg of you, my friends, whether you are Atheists, Christians, Pagans, or Scientists to read and repeat this to yourself and to read it out loud to your family today.  There is no escape from the basic truth that we feed on death in order to live.  That is renewal, that is rebirth. Pull out a copy of the Bible and Read from the Book of Ecclesiastes, The Preacher.  Read and Meditate on the universal truths that we celebrate on Good Friday, throughout Holy Week—the universal facts underlying how we live: that we are fed and sustained and renewed by death.  The Spanish were mystified and shocked by what they saw when they arrived at the Aztec Capital, what is now Mexico City.  There on the skull racks (as on the hill called Golgotha?) were a people who knew of the Seven Sacraments, and of the divine communion of the Flesh.   As it was at Chichén Itzá and in Tenochtitlán, it is now and ever shall be.  As it was among the Ancient Romans at Diana’s Wood in Aricia by Lake Nemi, it is now and ever shall be.  As it was in so many sacrificial bogs among our ancestors across Northern Europe, it is now and ever shall be.  As it was in the beginning, it is now and ever shall be: World Without End, Amen.

  The dripping blood our only drink,
The bloody flesh our only food:
In spite of which we like to think
That we are sound, substantial flesh and blood—
Again, in spite of that, we call this Friday good.

T. S. Eliot 


“East Coker,” from *The Four Quartets*

I.  

In my beginning is my end. In succession
Houses rise and fall, crumble, are extended,
Are removed, destroyed, restored, or in their place
Is an open field, or a factory, or a by-pass.
Old stone to new building, old timber to new fires,
Old fires to ashes, and ashes to the earth
Which is already flesh, fur, and faeces,
Bone of man and beast, cornstalk and leaf.
Houses live and die: there is a time for building
And a time for living and for generation
And a time for the wind to break the loosened pane
And to shake the wainscot where the field mouse trots
And to shake the tattered arras woven with a silent motto.

  In my beginning is my end.  Now the light falls
Across the open field, leaving the deep lane 
Shuttered with branches, dark in the afternoon,
Where you lean against a bank while a van passes,
And the deep lane insists on the direction 
Into the village, in the electric heat
Hypnotized. In a warm haze the sultry light
Is absorbed, not reflected, by grey stone.
The dahlias sleep in the empty silence.
Wait for the early owl.
                       In that open field
If you do not come too close, if you do not come too close,
On a summer midnight, you can hear the music 
Of the weak pipe and the little drum
And see them dancing around the bonfire
The association of man and woman 
In daunsinge, signifying matrimonie—
A dignified and commodiois sacrament.
Two and two, necessarye coniunction,
Holding eche other by the hand or the arm
Whiche betokeneth concorde. Round and round the fire
Leaping through the flames, or joined in circles,
Rustically solemn or in rustic laughter
Lifting heavy feet in clumsy shoes,
Earth feet, loam feet, lifted in country mirth
Mirth of those long since under earth
Nourishing the corn. Keeping time,
Keeping the rhythm in their dancing
As in their living in the living seasons
The time of the seasons and the constellations
The time of milking and the time of harvest
The time of the coupling of man and woman
And that of beasts.  Feet rising and falling.
Eating and drinking.  Dung and death.
  Dawn points, and another day
Prepares for heat and silence. Out at sea the dawn wind
Wrinkles and slides. I am here
Or there, or elsewhere. In my beginning.

II.

What is the late November doing
With the disturbance of the spring
And creatures of the summer heat,
And snowdrops writhing under feet
And hollyhocks that aim too high
Red into grey and tumble down
Late roses filled with early snow?
Thunder rolled by the rolling stars
Simulates triumphal cars
Deployed in constellated wars
Scorpion fights against the sun
Until the Sun and Moon go down
Comets weep and Leonids fly
Hunt the heavens and the plains
Whirled in a vortex that shall bring
The world to that destructive fire
Which burns before the ice-cap reigns

  That was a way of putting it—not very satisfactory
A periphrastic study in a worn-out poetical fashion,
Leaving one still with the intolerable wrestle 
With words and meanings. The poetry does not matter
It was not (to start again) what one had expected.
What was to be the value of the long looked forward to,
Long hope for calm, the autumnal serenity 
And the wisdom of age? Had they deceived us 
Or deceived themselves, the quiet-voiced elders,
bequeathing us merely a receipt for deceit?
The serenity only a deliberate hebitude,
The wisdom only the knowledge of dead secrets
Useless in the darkness into which they peered
Or from which they turned their eyes. There is, it seems to us,
At best, only a limited value
In the knowledge derived from experience.
The knowledge imposes a pattern, and falsifies,
For the pattern is new in every moment
And every moment is a new and shocking
Valuation of all we have been. We are only undeceived
Of that which, deceiving, could no longer harm.
In the middle, not only in the middle of the way
But all the way, in a dark wood, in a bramble,
On the edge of a grimpen, where is no secure foothold,
And menaced by monsters, fancy lights,
Risking enchantment. Do not let me hear
Of the wisdom of old men, but rather of their folly,
Their fear of fear and frenzy, their fear of possession,
Of belonging to another, or to others, or to God.
The only wisdom we can hope to acquire 
Is the wisdom of humility: humility is endless.

  The houses are all gone under the sea.

  The dancers are all gone under the hill.

III.

O dark dark dark. They all go into the dark,
The vacant interstellar spaces, the vacant into the vacant,
The captains, merchant bankers, eminent men of letters,
The generous patrons of art, the statesmen and the rulers,
Distinguished civil servants, chairmen of many committees,
Industrial lords and petty contractors, all go into the dark,
And dark the Sun and Moon, and the Almanach de Gotha
And the Stock Exchange Gazette, the Directory of Directors,
And cold the sense and lost the motive of action.
And we all go with them, into the silent funeral,
Nobody's funeral, for there is no one to bury.
I said to my soul, be still, and let the dark come upon you
Which shall be the darkness of God. As, in a theatre, 
The lights are extinguished, for the scene to be changed
With a hollow rumble of wings, with a movement of darkness on darkness,
And we know that the hills and the trees, the distant panorama
And the bold imposing facade are all being rolled away—
Or as, when an underground train, in the tube, stops too long between stations
And the conversation rises and slowly fades into silence
And you see behind every face the mental emptiness deepen
Leaving only the growing terror of nothing to think about;
Or when, under ether, the mind is conscious but conscious of nothing—
I said to my soul, be still, and wait without hope
For hope would be hope for the wrong thing; wait without love
For love would be love of the wrong thing; there is yet faith
But the faith and the love and the hope are all in the waiting.
Wait without thought, for you are not ready for thought:
So the darkness shall be the light, and the stillness the dancing.
Whisper of running streams, and winter lightning.
The wild thyme unseen and the wild strawberry,
The laughter in the garden, echoed ecstasy
Not lost, but requiring, pointing to the agony 
Of death and birth.

                         You say I am repeating
Something I have said before. I shall say it again,
Shall I say it again? In order to arrive there,
To arrive where you are, to get from where you are not,
  You must go by a way wherein there is no ecstasy.
In order to arrive at what you do not know
  You must go by a way which is the way of ignorance.
In order to possess what you do not possess
  You must go by the way of dispossession.
In order to arrive at what you are not
  You must go through the way in which you are not.
And what you do not know is the only thing you know
And what you own is what you do not own
And where you are is where you are not.

IV.

The wounded surgeon plies the steel
That questions the distempered part;
Beneath the bleeding hands we feel
The sharp compassion of the healer's art
Resolving the enigma of the fever chart.

  Our only health is the disease
If we obey the dying nurse
Whose constant care is not to please
But to remind of our, and Adam's curse,
And that, to be restored, our sickness must grow worse.

  The whole earth is our hospital
Endowed by the ruined millionaire,
Wherein, if we do well, we shall
Die of the absolute paternal care
That will not leave us, but prevents us everywhere.

  The chill ascends from feet to knees,
The fever sings in mental wires.
If to be warmed, then I must freeze
And quake in frigid purgatorial fires
Of which the flame is roses, and the smoke is briars.

  The dripping blood our only drink,
The bloody flesh our only food:
In spite of which we like to think
That we are sound, substantial flesh and blood—
Again, in spite of that, we call this Friday good.

V.

So here I am, in the middle way, having had twenty years—
Twenty years largely wasted, the years of l'entre deux guerres
Trying to learn to use words, and every attempt 
Is a wholly new start, and a different kind of failure
Because one has only learnt to get the better of words
For the thing one no longer has to say, or the way in which
One is no longer disposed to say it. And so each venture
Is a new beginning, a raid on the inarticulate
With shabby equipment always deteriorating
In the general mess of imprecision of feeling,
Undisciplined squads of emotion. And what there is to conquer
By strength and submission, has already been discovered
Once or twice, or several times, by men whom one cannot hope
To emulate—but there is no competition—
There is only the fight to recover what has been lost
And found and lost again and again: and now, under conditions
That seem unpropitious. But perhaps neither gain nor loss.
For us, there is only the trying. The rest is not our business.

  Home is where one starts from. As we grow older
The world becomes stranger, the pattern more complicated
Of dead and living. Not the intense moment 
Isolated, with no before and after,
But a lifetime burning in every moment
And not the lifetime of one man only
But of old stones that cannot be deciphered.
There is a time for the evening under starlight,
A time for the evening under lamplight
(The evening with the photograph album).
Love is most nearly itself
When here and now cease to matter.

Old men ought to be explorers
Here and there does not matter
We must be still and still moving
Into another intensity
For a further union, a deeper communion
Through the dark cold and empty desolation,
The wave cry, the wind cry, the vast waters
Of the petrel and the porpoise. In my end is my beginning.