Monday, June 28, 2010

oooh oooh teacher teacher I know!!!

[I read a short story, A Gentle Spirit, by Dostoyevsky, the other night. It depressed the hey out of me. It was unrequited love at its worst. To try to assuage my grief and disappointment I am going to post a favorite Dostoyevsky quote.]

This sort of character is met with pretty frequently in a certain class. They are the sort of people who know everyone - that is, they know where a man is employed, what his salary is, whom he knows, whom he married, what money his wife had, who are his cousins, second cousins, etc. etc. These men generally have a hundred pounds a year to live on, and they spend their whole time and talents in the amassing of this style of knowledge, which they reduce - or raise - to the standard of science.

-The Idiot, when Prince Myshkin was on a train inquiring of a seat-mate about his hometown. You probably have to read the whole character sketch of the clerk to get a kick out of it like I did.

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

It [still] takes one to know one. Don't know why that cliche matches all my posts.

Best advice I've heard recently: If you can understand someone, you are one step closer to being like that person.

My boss said that to me and I had never thought of it that way before.

He meant this in the negative sense. Sorry.

Basically, if someone is doing something that bothers me, makes me feel uncomfortable, or is just plain wrong, and I don't understand why they do it, I should put my inborn curiosity to rest and put the situation out of my mind.

I do have curiosity. A lot. My cousin Janet says that I am always ready to see others' viewpoints. That has a huge downside. If I don't understand the 'why' behind someone's sin, I am completely unwilling to call it 'sin'. Its the old 'I have never been in those person's shoes, so how could I judge them?' situation. I gotta know the why. (It's worse when you really respect someone so the questions are even more pressing.) But (I guess thankfully) God has not given us the keys inside each others' psyches.

What he has given us is his Word, with specific instructions on how to live. I can read the Bible and not have to compare myself with others. I can use the Bible to help others who have a different personality than my own. (I can use the Bible to learn how to write without so much parallel structure. Or maybe that's where I get it.) But the Word of God is sufficient for the stuff I need to know...