READ ã Ishmael By Daniel uinn

Daniel Quinn ê 1 READ

READ ã Ishmael By Daniel Quinn × Librarian's note An alternate cover edition can be found hereTEACHER SEEKS PUPILMust have an earnest desire tosave the world Apply in person It was just a three line ad in the personals section but it launched the adventure of a lifetime So begins Ishmael an utterly uniue and captivating novel that has earned a large Librarian's note An alternate cover edition can be found hereTEACHER SEEKS PUPILMust have an earnest desire tosave the world Apply in person It was just. Are you the sort of person who hears other people discussing books and finding yourself wondering how they can even form opinions on stories I mean either you like it or you don't right Well if that's you then read this book The Giver and Siddhartha if that sounds like too much substitute Jonathan Livingston Seagull for the latter Once you've done that you'll feel all sorts of strange emotions and ideas swirling around inside you and you too will be able to talk about how a book made you thinkThen you should watch Donnie Darko which will become your favorite movie and you can talk about how movies made you think too Soon you'll be readin' and thinkin' and talkin' up a storm It's just like a dog who eats grass so he can understand horsesThis book may seem impressive if you don't have much experience with philosophy history sociology or theology but the ideas in this book are about as complex as what you'd find in a college freshman's paper And uinn has an agenda he wants to convince you so all of his ideas are simplified and mixed up to support his conclusions Whether he did this deliberately to convince the reader or accidentally in the process of trying to convince himself isn't really important which is really worseFor example in his retelling of the Cain and Abel story he completely conflates Hunter Gatherer societies with Pastoral Nomads which makes his entire argument murky It's just another example of the 'Noble Savage in balance with nature' thing which is terribly naive Native cultures often transformed the land around them and drove animals to extinction as evidenced by the way mammoths were hunted until none remained One archaeological team on the West Coast of America discovered that the local tribe had been systematically killing and eating all the animals in the area Looking through the piles of discarded bones they'd find the tribe hunted and ate one animal until there were none left then moved on to a different animal Eventually the diseases brought by Europeans reached them and their population was greatly reduced and then the animals began to flourish againThe whole notion that humans used to be 'in balance' but no longer are is a fuzzy dream and not useful for anyone trying to look at the world and the problems we face Humans are not the first animals to cause extinction we're not even the first to cause worldwide atmospheric change leading to mass extinction It is a gross oversimplification like all of the arguments in this book and one that was already a uarter century out of date among ecologists by the time uinn was writingYou might ask 'why is this a problem isn't any book that gets people to think worthwhile' but the problem is that through oversimplification and emotional appeals this books actually sets out to shut down independent thought in the reader It isn't asking hard uestions as much as it's giving out easy answers It is trying to tell you how things are instead of inviting you to uestion the world for yourselfBeyond that the philosophy it presents is a rather insidious one at its core The idea that there is some 'great natural order' to things is very comforting because it makes the world sensible predictable and easy to understand If there is such an order then we can simply trust in it give ourselves up to it and let the rest take care of itself It becomes a passive attitude a uestion of faith in the systemBut the idea of the 'natural order' has been used and is still being used by power structures against the people Jan Smuts Prime Minister of South Africa wrote on it extensively using it to set up and maintain apartheid arguing that since colonial Europeans had conuered large parts of the world therefore it was their 'natural state' to rule and that it was natural for native populations to be ignorant and subservientLikewise when the powerhouse thinktank the Club of Rome presented The Limits of Growth in 1972 proposing that the only way to prevent ecological disaster was to maintain things as they are now indefinitely protesters pointed out that this policy would support the status uo keeping the same people and structures in power instead of trying to improve or change our current system and of course the club was made up of the same political leaders businessmen bureaucrats and economists who would have the most to lose if any change were made in the current systemBy the seventies there was already a sea change taking place in ecology and it was becoming clear that far from being in a state of self correcting balance the natural world was constantly shifting and changing that animal and plant populations varied widely from year to year and decade to decade even in isolated populations where you would most expect to see euilibrium reached The problem becomes that anyone who believes that some structure must be there underlying everything is going to trust that at a certain point that structure will balance things out automaticallyIt's like walking a tightrope and just assuming there must be a net below you that will catch you when you fall a dangerous assumption to make especially when we know it's not true Taking action to stabilize our world on our end but just trusting that 'natural balance' will take care of things on the other end is the height of irresponsibility and bound to throw things even out of whack A in depth look at the progression of ecological theory can be found in part 2 of the BBC documentary All Watched Over By Machines of Loving GraceIn the end mixed in with wrong headed assumptions and out of date theories uinn gives us nothing than the most simplistic basic conclusions about the world Should people be nice to each other Yes Should we destroy the things that keep us alive No We all know that We don't need uinn to tell us And we all know that solving problems is harder than saying that things could be better I just went as deep as this book goes and I didn't even need to give you lectures from a magical talking monkey


A three line ad in the personals section but it launched the adventure of a lifetime So begins Ishmael an utterly uniue and captivating novel that has ea. The reason I like uinn’s style in “Ishmael” is that he doesn’t assume a pedantic perch atop humanity and force feed a philosophically driven A Z laundry list of “how to make yourself a better human being” and “save the world one person at a time” mantra down the reader’s throat His style of writing is intimate Reading “Ishmael” kind of reminds you of sitting in lecture with that one professor in college whose class you earnestly enjoyed and looked forward to attending each week those lectures where you felt as if taking notes was of an inconvenient distraction than simply opening your ears and listening for 60 minutes You got out of it by just sitting there like a blob taking it all in as opposed to fretting over particulars You can tell uinn is or was a good teacher A good teacher defined as one who guides hisher students to the answers to their uestions; not one who regurgitates spoon feeds or paraphrases concepts principles and opinions down your throat systematically Like Ishmael's narrator I too found myself excited to come back each day via turning the next page to learn another part of the “story” What I find fascinating about this book is the power of its seemingly simplistic message “Man unto himself is temporal phenomenon” uinn doesn’t waste his time extrapolating the myriad of problems that affect our world to make his point He doesn’t bother to persuade or guilt the reader into action with “doomsday” scenarios statistics outcomes or make sententious arguments to bolster his credibility as a “thinker” Instead he plainly examines the most basic function of the human species and how the organization of its functionality became – well dysfunctional Regardless of whether you factor God evolution or “little green men” into your respective paradigm to help you make sense of humanity its purpose and ultimate destiny refuting the message in this book is unreasonable Human beings are the most evolved intelligent and capable species on the planet As such we find ourselves amidst a paradox We are progenitor to the earth as well as the root source of its impending or at least eventual devastation Ishmael is not a book whose scope is easily confined to the adverse effects of humanity on the environment or excess population or invasion of one civilization by another throughout history or how we’re killing the polar bear into extinction etc Its message is simply that man has forgotten his place in the order of nature in a very large context and that happened the moment man was cognizant of his innate ability to differentiate good vs evil as a species As a result man began to use that acumen as an instinctual instrument to serve as justification for what “lives” and what “dies” pursuant to ensuring his unlimited growth – at any expense KL

READ Ishmael By Daniel Quinn

Ishmael By Daniel QuiRned a large and passionate following among readers and critics alike one of the most beloved and bestselling novels of spiritual adventure ever publishe. Step right up ladies and gentlemen Behold the majesty of Curious George as he gets all dialogue y on your ass Your encounter will leave you changed You too may find yourself flinging poop at civilization along with our simian savior A telepathic gorilla develops something like consciousness is happily able to flower under the attentive stewardship of a George Soros type philanthropist and waxes philosophical to a disenchanted idealist This book stinks of anthropological and ecological platitudes which I think you would be better served acuiring by taking a few puffs of the wacky weed and watching the Pearl Jam video for Do the Evolution And something that seems to be missing from every review of this book I’ve read thus far the story’s narrator is barely unnerved by a telepathic gorilla I can’t speak for anybody but myself but if I ever tell you that my dog is talking to me please contact the authorities I’m sure I’ll thank you for it later I mean David Berkowitz does it and he’s a serial killer; this guy does it and he wants to roll back civilization to the hunter gatherer stage I’m down with Mother Earth and all that jazz but psychopathology is psychopathology