Lars von Trier’s “Medea”

Watched Danish film director Lars von Trier's 1987 masterpiece "Medea" yesterday afternoon. What an arresting film. And what a truly gut-wrenching climax--i.e., the filiocidal act of revenge for which this Greek character is infamous--the intensity and pathos of which makes most silver screen depictions of tragedy and suffering seem almost lighthearted.A big surprise for me was how effective its extremely minimalistic backdrop of foggy Jutland marshes was for a Greek tragedy set in ancient … [Read more...]

Every once in a while an urban legend comes momentarily true

Well, I'll be a monkey's uncle.  A honest to goodness case of whites being disenfranchised by minorities! White Power types must be ecstatic at finally having a case--however isolated and utterly atypical it may be--to cite as they spin their lurid tales of minorities taking over America under the guise of multiculturalism and affirmative action. Get back to me when there are more young Caucasian men in prison than in college, knuckleheads. Whites Faced Election Bias In Mississippi, Judge … [Read more...]

To blog or not to blog

Or more precisely: How to blog without wasting eons of time you don't have to begin with. Am still deliberating--with the glacial but, I think, dignified pace of an Ent pondering weighty matters--the fate of my blog and general engagement in the Blogosphere. I very much enjoy exchanging ideas with kindred spirits and blogging is a hard habit to kick. Especially after you've watched something like "Outfoxed: Rupert Murdoch's War on Journalism", as I did recently.  Timely activist … [Read more...]

The end of tourism in Vermont

Grew up in Boston, but lived for a while in the Ying to Vermont's Yang, New Hampshire. I remember people complaining about other New Englanders driving up during the Fall and crawling along backroads while they gawked at pretty foliage with their heads out the windows. They called 'em "leaf peepers". Vermont has a more familiar type of "peeping". Vermont: City Known for Nudity Opts for Emergency Coverage - New York Times People in parts of a Vermont town known for nudity … [Read more...]

The road to paradise is paved with chocolate

Faith and Theology has uncovered the secret of European civilization, and our lack thereof: chocolate. Faith and Theology: A theology of chocolate To enter a little French or Swiss chocolaterie – the sight! the smells! mon Dieu, the taste! – is one of life’s most sublime experiences. The development of existentialist philosophy in France and of neo-orthodox theology in Switzerland can, in my view, be traced directly to the quality of the chocolates of those regions. (On the other hand, the dour … [Read more...]

Desi brides, non-desi grooms

There's an article in Nirali Magazine called "The United Colors of Desi" on South Asian women who marry across racial lines. Shabana is one of the women mentioned, and it includes a nice picture of the three of us, the taking of which required me to hunch over like Quasimodo. … [Read more...]

Where hate speech led in Rwanda

And yet another... I'm reminded of American talk radio and significant swaths of the Blogosphere today. Is the word "Islamofascist" employed today with much less venom  (or carelessness) than "cockroach" was in the example below? It's enough to make this liberal buy a nice big shotgun, just in case. MEDIA: When Hate Speech Turns Deadly, Who Can Stop It? While tensions already existed due to high population density and the poisonous historical influence of Rwanda's … [Read more...]

The power of fasting and women’s piety

And another... Some beautiful and vivid anecdotes from the life of the 9th century Sufi sheikh, Hazrat Sahl ibn Abd Allah al-Tustari. Living Islam -Tustari He narrates from `Umar ibn Wasil al-Basri that Sahl said: "My uncle once told me: `Remember Allah Who created you.' I said: `How should I remember him?' He replied: `Say in your heart, whenever you are alone at night, three times, without moving your tongue: Allah is with me; Allah is looking at me; Allah is watching me.'" This … [Read more...]