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Udjat Essay

I’ve added another feature essay to the website, this is one I penned for Graham Hancock’s website earlier this year, but which a number of you may not have seen. It’s a mini-investigation of the topics in Dan Brown’s next book The Solomon Key, focusing on one interesting facet of the online Da Vinci Code quiz. Titled “Dan Brown – The Udjat and The Solomon Key“, it not only touches on the subjects Dan Brown has covered, but also goes into some ancient Egyptian symbolism, in particular the ‘Eye of Horus’.

  1. The eye and pyramid
    I watched the movie Being There with Peter Sellers the other day and noticed that when the billionaire Benjamin Rand died, he was buried in a crypt shaped like a pyramid with an eye in it.
    Also his pall bearers were part of the faction that helped rule America with Rand.


    1. Being There & Washington’s Head
      Dear Shadow & Greg:

      I recall, dimly, that a buncha-buncha years ago there was a trick that one could do with a dollar bill.

      If folded correctly, Washington’s partially bald pate became an atomic mushroom cloud.

      While it is easy to see, looking at the Washington side of the bill, THAT this could be done, do you guys, or any other readers, remember HOW this was done?

      As just a bit of an aside to those who know me — on Oct. 28 I became a grandfather for the very first time — a girl named Zoe.

      This announcement is not meant to subvert the intentions of Greg’s post, but rather add a bit of what is currently most important in my own life to it.

      i am quickly understanding that my granddaughter’s world will be a much-much darker one than the world I lived in, and this pisses me off. Last year, with both my children grown into responsible adults, I listened to the daily news with curiosity. What next, that sort of thing. I see now a pink, defenseless thing, that shares my blood, entering a world that she will have to live in without my arm around her shoulder.

      i suddently have someone to worry about.

      Those of you who think about the subjects raised by Dan’s and Greg’s books are the hope of this world. I am hoping that you can keep a little of that light shining while my granddaughter grows to adulthood.



      1. I wish you such good luck Jeff
        And blessings on you and the dear little girl and her family.

        I know how you feel about looking at the world your grandchildren have been born into and it is a scary feeling.

        I was thinking one day about the best years for humanity and which years they were, and I think I decided that they started after the second world war when penicillin became readily available and only lasted until the threat of nuclear war became a reality.
        The living was easier in the late 20th century for many people but the fear was there that we would not last the distance as a civilization.
        Life has been easier for many people, I know here in Oz, but the fear factor has multiplied exponentially.

        But whatever happens in the world, she will have you to guide her and protect her and that in itself is a blessing.

        Please give her a little sweet kiss from me.

        love shadows

        1. I was listening to a U2
          I was listening to a U2 concert from this year. Bono was telling the story of how they met the Edge. He arrived in a spaceship. They asked him where he had come from, and the Edge replied, “The future.” Bono asked the Edge what it’s like there, and the Edge replied, “It’s a lot better.”

          I like this story of hope, and I sincerely believe that the world WILL be a better place — perhaps not in our lifetime, but in the next generation’s lifetime, and the generation after that. I’m usually a very pessimistic and negative person, Jeff, so if I think that the future isn’t all doom and gloom … then you can trust my intuition.

          We’ve gotten through a lot worse in the past.

          1. The Past and the Future
            Thanks so much, Shadows and Rico.

            On the street where I live, I am only friends with the family who lives a couple of houses away. What’s sad about that is that I have lived here for thirty years or more.

            I count myself so blessed to live, in cyber-fashion, on a much larger street — one on which people like you live. Being neighbors to people like yourselves makes me proud!



  2. John Taylor Gatto: Quitter?
    John Taylor Gatto’s ‘essay’ (and I use that designation lightly) is, at best, a steaming large pile of crap, afaic.

    I don’t know if he’s just ‘lost it’ himself, or is striking out at the ‘educational system’ who treated him so badly throughout, or if he really has fallen into the ‘conspiracy theory’ trap (no matter how loudly he claims otherwise), or if he just needed to fill out a book to make a few bucks in his elderly retirement. (and/or keep his speaking fees coming in)

    Sure, ‘education’ has problems, lots and lots of them, TONS of them, and isn’t anywhere near perfect, not even close, but, still, it is much better than nothing, and better now than ‘before’. With some specific exceptions, of course, like when they stupidly quit teaching phonic reading in the 80’s, or so. (U.S.) As merely one example. And some other idiocies.

    I know some teachers of various grades from pre-school to college and university level, as well as parents with children in those grades, and have heard WAY too many ‘horror stories’ for my comfort zone. Regarding teachers, administration, and the children. Although, they do tend to be the exception rather than the rule, as one would expect.

    However, they aren’t really any different, in affect and/or result, than those I hear that occur to adults in companies, organizations, corporations, and local, state and federal government agencies, all jobs and working places everywhere. Basically the same, more or less.

    Yet, overall, although some of Gatto’s points are obvious reality and speak to some of the more eggregious problems, all together, as an ‘essay’, or book, they seem to be a lump of mish-mashed meandering thoughts and theories and ideas and ‘crap’ that is pretty difficult to swallow. Apples and Oranges and Pears, oh my, if you will.

    As a member of the group and years he mentions, from about 1965 to 1985, I understand his anger, and irritation, and frustration, and all the rest. I’ve seen it all, so to speak. The crappy teachers who should NOT be teaching, the great teachers who struggle every-single-day to keep doing what they do and try so hard to do it better and keep doing it, against ridiculous odds of all types, the latter few and far between, unfortunately. The students of every flavor he mentions, and more. All the crap I personally had to endure throughout myself.

    However, for the most part, we all survived, and did well, some more so than others, of course. During school daze and after. There is a reason why they discuss “The Bell Curve”, and it’s not because it sounds funny, or is some fantasy some evil doer made up, or anything of the sort. It is simple statistical mathematical science. Pure and plain and simple.

    People are who they are. From alpha to omega and everything in between. That is the way it is. You see it every day in your life, everywhere, if you’re paying even minimal attention.

    I disagree, though, that it is all some ‘grande plan’, especially as he paints it, either by intent, by accident, or by luck. Except in the sense that it just “is”, like most things. For better and worse. Which is why, on the surface, his ‘essay’ strikes a note.

    I’m just glad that Gatto struggled and worked and teached and stayed around as long as he did, rather than quitting ealier. We definitely need more teachers, and people, like him around. In the ideal, anyway, and, preferably, without the thoughts and such he has shown now in his latter years. We can all do without that.

    But it is good to think about it all and wonder about it and discuss it and work to make it better, if at all possible, in the many ways we all can, if we try.

    Attempting is good, but is inevitably worthless without some success. Success is kind of important, in many regards. We definitely do not get enough of either of them from enough people. And therein lies the root of most of our problems. (and you can’t blame that on our educational systems, more so than anything else, anyway)

    1. Gatto’s essay
      I can’t agree with you that Gatto’s essay was a “steaming pile of crap”. There were many good points in it. My main gripe against it was his style of writing, which in many parts was difficult to understand. There was also a lot of waffling between his points.

      It was very long, and I have only been through the first eight pages, but he made a valuable point in the part titled “School is a Religion”. And how about this quote from John Dewey’s Pedagogic Creed statement of 1897?

      Every teacher should realize he is a social servant set apart for the maintenance of the proper social order and the securing of the right social growth. In this way the teacher is always the prophet of the true God and the usherer in of the true kingdom of heaven.

      What a hideous image.

      Just imagine how much worse religious education must be for our children. There are very few children that emerge unscathed from this abomination.

      Last night I had a conversation with my 10-year-old nephew, who is in constant trouble at school, partly because of his rebellious nature and partly because of the poor quality of education. It wasn’t until I was 14 that I realized that religion was a “steaming pile of crap” but my precocious nephew has already figured it out. What really sets him off is religious classes. He goes to a Catholic school and he is in 5th grade. He has the same teacher for all classes, but the school, being Catholic, makes religion a compulsory subject, and they try to shove it down his throat. His teacher, a woman, has told him he must be a follower of Jesus, and that those who do not believe are Protestants! She has told him that the Bible is 100% true, but Michael (not his real name) is so rebellious that he has told the teacher straight to her face that he does not believe any of the Bible. He doesn’t believe that there was a garden of Eden and he doesn’t believe in the miracles of Jesus such as turning water into wine. I gave him some moral support last night and told him that he was right to reject the Bible, that it was a book of fairy stories. I put him straight about Jesus, that he never existed. He said he could accept having to read a book of fairy stories, but his teacher and headmaster insist the Bible is 100% true.

      Gatto was working in the public school system, not in religious schools, but the problem is the same in both — the religious attitude ingrained in teachers. The problem is just a matter of degrees.

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