Calvin’s Prayer

There has been some debate about whether or not Reinhold Niebuhr composed the famous “Serenity Prayer.” But the version in this comic strip is definitely not by him. It is pure Calvin – and I don’t mean John Calvin.

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  • Bubba

    I’m assuming you already know the characters are based loosely on the their namesakes, John Calvin and Thomas Hobbes.

    • James F. McGrath

      I don’t see much of a resemblance between this Calvin and the other one. And what I have read online suggests that the cartoonist himself would disagree with you. Do you have a source for that information which cites Bill Watterson?

      • arcseconds

        I’m pretty sure that I’ve read Watterson himself say that they were *named* after these figures in one of the collections.

        I have a vague recollection that he also said something like that in Calvin’s case it’s a bit of a joke, as the historical Calvin was quite straight-laced.

        (edit: ‘*named*’ because I don’t think there’s any real sense in which these characters are *based* on their namesakes.)

      • arcseconds

        Wikipedia has:

        “In “The Complete Calvin And Hobbes,” Watterson does not name the
        inspiration for Calvin’s character, but he does say Calvin is named for
        “a 16th-century theologian who believed in predestination,”
        and Hobbes for “a 17th-century philosopher with a dim view of human
        nature.” There seems to be little doubt that this could only be John
        Calvin and Thomas Hobbes, respectively.”

        • James F. McGrath

          Yes, my understanding is that the names may be derived from there, but there is no sense in which, for instance, Calvin’s views reflect those of John Calvin. Indeed, I imagine Calvin might be horrified at the suggestion – regardless which Calvin you take me to be referring to! :-)

  • arcseconds

    “The reasonable man adapts himself to the world: the unreasonable one
    persists in trying to adapt the world to himself. Therefore all progress
    depends on the unreasonable man.”

    — G.B. Shaw