Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Archive for July, 2019

The Myrtle

There lived in the village of Miano a man and his wife, who had no children. The woman constantly harped on her misery: “O heavens! if I might but have a little baby—I should not care, were it even a sprig of a myrtle.” At last her wish was granted; and at the end of nine months, instead of a little boy or girl, she placed in the hands of the nurse a fine sprig of myrtle. This she planted with great delight in a pot, as fancy as a crib of a royal baby.

Now the King’s son happening to pass by, as he was going to hunt, took a liking for the myrtle in a pot and the sight was unusual  and directly went in and offered to buy it. He would not take no for an answer. The woman put a thousand difficulties and refusals but when he threatened force relented at last. She gave him the pot, beseeching him to hold it dear, for she loved it more than a daughter, and valued it as much as if it were her own offspring. It was thus the Prince had the flower-pot carried with the greatest care in the world into his own chamber. He had placed it in a balcony, and tended and watered it with his own hand.

It happened one evening, when the Prince had gone to bed, and put out the candles, and all were at rest and in their first sleep, that he heard the sound of some one stealing through the house, and coming cautiously towards his bed. Half asleep he put out his hand to feel prickles. He thought it at first a hedgehog and then he saw its form more fairy-like, like a moonbeam gliding: oh no it had form of a celestial creature with flaming red hair let loose; it even danced about his supine form and sat on his pillow as though it had come in for a chat! But as the dawn broke the prince woke and looked around. He was alone.

The unknown fair visitor had disappeared, leaving the Prince filled with curiosity and wonder. He looked forward to night. This went on for seven nights in a row. So on the eighth night he managed to tie one of her tresses to his arm, that she might not escape; then he called a chamberlain, and bidding him light the candles, he saw a sight to amaze one.

The chamberlain crossed himself and made himself scarce.

The fairy offered herself to be his own if he would. Immediately he accepted her offer and thus she became his wife.

It so happened that the Prince was summoned to hunt a great wild boar which was ravaging the country. So he was forced to leave his wife. So after informing of his absence he said to her to go back to the pot in the balcony since his father insisted his presence during the hunt. “I will do so,” said the fairy, “but do me one favor; leave a thread of silk with a bell tied to the top of the myrtle, and when you come back pull the thread and ring, and immediately I will come out and say, Here I am.'”

The Prince did so, and then calling a chamberlain, said to him, “Come hither, come hither, you! ” He instructed what he had to do in his absence and ended by saying, “Make this bed every evening, as if I were myself to sleep in it. Water this flower-pot regularly, and mind, I have counted the leaves, and if I find one missing I will surely charge you to your regret.”

So saying he mounted his horse, and went, to join his father in the hunt. In the meanwhile seven wicked women, all spurned by the prince made a league to open the secret passageway the prince had shut. They sent for a mason who did as they told him to do. Thus they entered in the stealth of night went through the prince’s chamber to explore. But finding nothing, they opened the window; and when they saw the beautiful myrtle standing there, each of them plucked a leaf from it; but the youngest took off the entire top, to which the little bell was hung; and the moment it was touched the bell tinkled and the fairy, thinking it was the Prince, immediately came out.

As soon as the women saw this lovely creature they fastened their hands around the pot. Smashing the pot they pulled the plant apart ‘That serves you right; because of you we have been discarded.” The fairy simply laughed.

Meanwhile the next day chamberlain came to make the bed and water the flower-pot, according to his master’s orders, and seeing the balcony in shambles he swooned. For he saw nothing but seven firewood piled neatly on broken pot.

When the Prince came back from the chase, he faced a chamberlain falling down at his feet begging mercy. He narrated what happened. The prince went through rage, disappointment and then a shiver! He realized winter had come in early and he ordered the hearth to be lit using the firewood. Seven firewood must make a pretty sight when it is dry and burns well. What took his breath away was the outline of a myrtle tree in bluish light sputtering. ‘A marvelous sight it was, all the sparks dazzling and a voice from far away. “O love, a tree is not a tree nor a myrtle is myrtle.” The sound reminded him of his wife.

As he stood there wondering the fairy stepped from shadows. As large as life and behold in flesh and blood, and she raked the dying fire and said, ” Those jilted lovers are your past. You have put it behind you.” The prince embraced her and she was real. While he kissed her she murmured. “It hurt a little but they delivered me from my spell.”

The prince did not ask further and he pledged his fidelity to her and they called on the king and married them with pomp and great revelry.  In due time they became king and queen of that land and lived happily.

Benny

*The collection “Il Pentamerone” was first published at Naples by Giambattista Basile, who is believed to have collected them chiefly in Crete and Venice. The story has been adapted for this blog.

Read Full Post »

This is the concluding part of The Bible the Book of life, originally posted in Guide to His Word,-b

GuidetohisWord

The LORD thy God will raise up unto thee a Prophet from the midst of thee, of thy brethren, like unto me; unto him ye shall hearken; (Deut.18:15.Acts.3:22)”

Parallelism of Israel and the church refers to same persons and symbols significance of each, of course varies. The key verse spoken by Moses can well apply to Jesus as well as to Messiah who shall at the end times establish the Millennial Reign. The nation of Israel rejected the Servant King since they were seeking Messiah to deliver them from the Roman occupation. Both the Son of man and Messiah signify God the Son. Only in their understanding of the scriptures they were deceived.
Each has a symbol: Law of Moses represented by tablets of stone and the new covenant by blood with fleshy hearts (2 Cor.3:3;Ezek.36:26).
The Spirit in organizing narrative passages from God the Father and God the…

View original post 590 more words

Read Full Post »

My latest book to come out from Amazon.com is “In Search for the Book of Changes”- available as paperback and on kindle.

234 pages

kindle $3.94

paperback $11.00

A customer review will be much appreciated. Thanks.

  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1077182678
  • ISBN-13: 978-1077182677
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.5 x 9 inches

 

What is the Book of Changes?

Whoever lays hold of it is the Left-handed Fox-Spirit. He shall with it set the pace in the spirit world and the humdrum lives of folks.

In the waning days of the Ming Dynasty two brothers set out to seek their father who has been dead for six years. Their father, a grandmaster in Black Art has left the Book of Changes and is up for grabs. There is a bitter struggle going on among other practitioners to occupy his place. The Book traces their parallel searches and when these meet the outcome is as harrowing as only a good ghost story well told can.

Wang and Lung are the last of the noble house of Chu K’wang. They are 14 and identical twins. Following some strange encounters they set out in search and find the body of their father. They are honour-bound to give their father a decent burial. But a series of events pitchfork them into the heart of the mystery over which the dark forces of spirit-world do play a part.

The twins need all help they can get. Their bumbling uncle a sea captain seems to thrive in blunders while their mysterious attendant at the climatic moment proves to be the man who would wrap up the loose ends of the mystery.

Thanks.

 

 

Read Full Post »

This scroll carrying ideogram for ‘tiger’ was an eyecatcher when I visited an exposition in Singapore. I bought it then but only today my wife and I thought of displaying it in our drawing room. Benny

Read Full Post »

Continuing from the previous post the Bible as God document gives us a clear idea of our standing with the creator God. It is not in manner anyone may say as distinct as a physical reality. God is a Spirit and we are flesh and blood having a form each different from another. So what is the connection?

What is the reality of a cup but its hollow? The form is only a means but its essence is in its confines. Similarly each of us carries an unseen world, reality of which is infinite Our thoughts and dreams do tell something more than physical reality that envelops us. The Bible being God breathed the words written by holy men of old, is God’s will and his ways set in human speech. It leaves however a certain hint of the Being which as the Creator of the heaven and earth yields to our power of abstract thinking. God is Love and he is Righteous  are many such aspects that we can relate to.

Darwin did not arrive at the theory of evolution singly. Simultaneously Arthur Wallace Russel also was busy formulating a theory very similar in another part of the world. They observed and arrived at their conclusions on the shoulders of wise men and their own conclusions. Apart from intellectually plausible, nevertheless ideas they had proof supporting their suppositions. So hard evidence also make their ideas hold up. By the same token God also has revealed himself as ideas and from hard evidence. Whatever one may know of God has to have a sound basis and it must be truth. Faith is one such area that man can accept it as the truth. Thus love of God the Father we speak having understood the nature of love from our human parent. Love of God we relate from our own earthly measure but we lifted ourselves beyond our comfort zone in order to please God is living an idea and believe in it. Turning the other cheek is not normal human response but when take an example from the manner Jesus Christ we put faith in our working clothes. By the same token when we have injured others by our words and actions we respond in a manner we have not thought before. We relate to God on the basis  of his Son. Jesus Christ coming to the world as Son of man is a benchmark to live up to. So faith is the lingua franca between realities of heaven and the earth. Faith without works cannot please God.

The book of life for the above reason explains the nature of God from the life of Jesus Christ who in fulfillment of many prophecies came to live among men. From many witnesses we may be sure it was indeed so. From the beginning till the last book what we find in the Bible is about him as the Prince of life. Science allows man from careful study of evidence of fossils, climate conditions through passage of time, to present a sound case for evolutionary theory. Whereas the Bible being God document is not about ethnography or sciences that man can satisfy his rational inquiry into his origin. The Spirit on the other hand presents a  case for reconciling heaven and the earth from God’s standpoint for his instruction. So Adam and Eve are to be understood in terms of making God’s Will and considering the nature of flesh has provided whatever necessary remedies that shall establish a single standard man can meet the righteousness of God.

The Spirit in organizing the will of the Invisible God and Jesus Christ as only begotten Son’ sent to the world and he has fulfilled them takes much of the Book. Thus when the Spirit states God created the earth and the heaven, it refers to the mind of  God. The Spirit refers to the time ‘In the beginning’ marking Time according to God’s calendar.  Parallel to it is how God the Son set out to fulfill it. According to the promise of God who shall receive all those who lived and kept their faith shall be part of the earth and heaven thereby ushering the Salvation  Plan of God has been fulfilled. The Spirit marks it as ‘the end times.’ In the beginning and end times are tags used by the Spirit and it is a clue for the reader not to approach it from earth time. For example here is a verse, “ But when the fulness of the time was come, God sent forth his Son, made of a woman, made under the law(Gal.4:4).” This fulness of time was determined by God and we can say that it was at the time to which the Gospels refer.

The Spirit creates parallelism from actions of God. God breathed into the nostrils of Adam and it made him a living soul. We see Jesus before his ascension breathed on the disciples. “And when he had said this, he breathed on them, and saith unto them, Receive ye the Holy Ghost:(John 20:22)

(To be continued)

Benny

Read Full Post »

The Scopes Trial, formally known as The State of Tennessee v. John Thomas Scopes and commonly referred to as the Scopes Monkey Trial, was an American legal case in July 1925. A substitute high school teacher, John T Scopes, was accused of violating the states Butler Act, which had made it unlawful to teach human evolution in any state-funded school. The trial was deliberately staged in order to attract publicity to the small town of Dayton, Tennessee, where it was held. Scopes was unsure whether he had ever actually taught evolution, but he purposely incriminated himself so that the case could have a defendant.

Scopes was found guilty and fined $100 (equivalent to $1,400 in 2018), but the verdict was overturned on a technicality. The trial served its purpose of drawing intense national publicity. When a bill is passed on matters of faith no one is certain and worse still do not live up to, one thing is certain:  nothing good can come out of it. Still law makers have a job and do they still. I introduced this trial from wikipedia for another reason. Evolution is a theory and it is what man’s search for truth would mean in the best sense of the word. They need data and build a foolproof argument. How life stated is half baked if why it must be so cannot be stated. Man has his conscious and unconscious halves doesn’t he? Merely an array of facts do not add up anymore than faith without works make man a believer.

Besides one does not compare apples with pears. So on what grounds a theory is valid stand on untested premises.  The Bible is God document to which no man can assume to know better than God who has revealed through human agency.

Therefore whosoever teaches the Bible would accept its inerrancy as self-evident. I have read the Bible from the time I could make sense of words as a toddler; and I was taught and later took to it as naturally as any secular book I could lay hands on. Some seven decades later I have not ceased to cherish it as my greatest possession for the reason it is the book of life. Since leaving behind the Illustrated Book of Omar Khayyam in 2014, I decided not to pursue after human wisdom as consistently as I had earlier set as a quest of some talisman that would give meaning to my life. I found it in my well thumbed Bible and with years I can now write with certain confidence why it has become most misunderstood and have caused mischief historically as well as among other belief-systems. Man literally interprets thereby missing the guidelines of God. The purpose of the Book is for our instruction in righteousness(2 Ti.3:16).

John Scopes Trial was a mischief where the state would enforce an argument for the wrong reasons. Faith is as personal as man’s iris scan, finger prints or as soul. It can only be administered by individual. By not living by it is as kissing the Holy Bible before the public and kicking it privately. It is what faith without works mean. Walk the talk, man. When such humbug aggrandize today using the name of Jesus and build themselves mega churches and preach prosperity scattering to wind the very core value of Jesus we see the evil; by such misuse their conscience is seared so their Jesus talk is a parody of the real. Pastors speak of suffering as unscriptural forgetting the cross and suffering. Naturally his atonement is falsified or diluted.  When truth can be alternate truth from highest office there are those who accept without murmur. It shows that the very ministers of God would rather leave the Bible misunderstood, a cover for their pursuits of fame and fortune. Have we have had sound bytes from televangelists stoking the controversies,-Creationism, Moral majority, pro-life and the list is endless.

The Bible begins with the sentence, a categorical statement: In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth. It is in perfect past tense meaning all that therein angels, men, beasts are found therein.

This leads us to the next question. What is time element then? God is omnipresent omnipotent so space and time is zero. The Spirit in order to instruct us has however given it Time (in capitals because it is God’s time) and our earth time is linked to it.

In the last book of the Bible we find names new earth and new heaven. “Behold I make all things new (Re.21:5)” which is said by Jesus Christ. Where God had in one place made a statement we hear it another sense spoken by Jesus. What is this newness one may wonder? Here is God the Son assuring us what his Father had seen in divine Will has been fulfilled by him.

God is one. Invisible God who lives in unapproachable light. Jesus came to the world with a clear mandate (John 3:16). He manifested God and was the image of the Invisible God. He came as Son of man and his death and resurrection opened a way for man to have fellowship with God. So the monotheistic God is seen in Father Son relationship and such a reading is on account of salvation of man. Trinity is as natural as body spirit and soul of man. God though triune is as one in the same manner man though a tripartite being walks as one.

If God willing I shall take up the rest in the next post.

Benny

Read Full Post »