Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Wednesday January 21, 2009

Filed under: General — m759 @ 12:00 PM

Harvard Divinity School logo

“… while some are elected,
others not elect are
passed by….”

A commentary on the
Calvinist doctrine of preterition

Gravity’s Rainbow, Penguin Classics, 1995, page 742:

“… knowing his Tarot, we would expect to look among the Humility, among the gray and preterite souls, to look for him adrift in the hostile light of the sky, the darkness of the sea….

Now there’s only a long cat’s-eye of bleak sunset left over the plain tonight, bright gray against a purple ceiling of clouds, with an iris of


“God is the original
conspiracy theory.”

Pynchon’s Paranoid History

“We remain a young nation, but in the words of Scripture, the time has come to set aside childish things.”

— President Obama yesterday

It is not entirely clear what these “childish things” are. Perhaps the young nation’s “childish things” that the new President refers to are part of what Robert Stone memorably called “our secret culture.” Stone was referring to Puritanism, which some advocates of the new religion of Scientism might call “childish.” I do not. Lunatic, perhaps, but not childish.

Related meditations:

A year ago yesterday, on Sunday, Jan. 20, 2008, the mid-day lottery for New York State was 605.

A midrash in the Judeo-Christian tradition of paranoia a year ago today suggested that 605 might be a veiled reference to “God, the Devil, and a Bridge,” a weblog entry on mathematician André Weil.

Continuing in this vein a year later, we are confronted with the mid-day New York lottery for yesterday:


Taking a hint from another
entry on Weil, this may be
regarded as a reference to
The Oxford Book of
English Verse
(1919 edition):

Selection 742 in that book
comports well with this
jounal’s recent meditations
on death and Brooklyn:

742: The Imprisoned Soul

“Let me glide noiselessly forth;  
With the key of softness
     unlock the locks….”

— Walt Whitman

Applying this method of
exegesis to last year’s
lottery, we have

605: Hymn of Pan

“And all that did then
    attend and follow,
Were silent with love,
    as you now, Apollo,
With envy of
    my sweet pipings.”

“In time, his carefree lifestyle began to upset the early Christians, who saw his earthy temptations as a manifestation of the Devil. Who would’ve thought that the horny old goat would become the blueprint for popular conceptions of Satan– cloven hooves, horns and all?”

Pan: God of Shepherds, Flocks, and Fornication

Hymn 605 thus supplies a reference to the devil mentioned by Weil in the entry of 6/05.

It, together with Hymn 742 of a year later, may be regarded as a divine response to a weblog entry yesterday from the Greater Wasilla Area on listening to the inauguration:

“… thus far, I have not heard any priests of Apollo, nor of any other God, issuing any auguries.”

Neither have I, but hearing is only one of the senses.

“Heard melodies are sweet,
    but those unheard
Are sweeter.”

— John Keats

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