Sherman Krebbs

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About Sherman Krebbs

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    one grain short of a heap

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  1. change name request

    And this, as opposed to a (hand over my heart) Granfalloon...
  2. change name request

    The only other book I have read of his is Slaughterhouse-Five, though I have been time travelling ever since. My tendency is to think that the latest book I have read is the best, provided that it is really good, and cat’s cradle is no exception. I could not stop laughing. Even now thinking of it, bubbles start to form in my esophagus. This poem stuck out to me. “Tiger got to hunt, bird got to fly; Man got to sit and wonder 'why, why, why?' Tiger got to sleep, bird got to land; Man got to tell himself he understand.” There is definitely some profundity in his commentary. Will have to pick-up lonesome no more.
  3. change name request

    The Dobie Gillis predates me by two decades, so I did not make that connection. Cat's cradle was published in 1963, so I am guessing people at the time probably would have, which makes it even more hilarious (and maybe interesting?). Seminal book for those interested in studying Bokononism.
  4. change name request

    Can I be called "Sherman Krebbs" at least till I find one better. Thanks. Background for those who are interested: There was another message, written in lipstick in a feminine hand on the wallpaper over my bed. It said: “No, no, no, said Chicken-licken.” There was a sign hung around my dead cat’s neck. It said, “Meow.” I have not seen Krebbs since. Nonetheless, I sense that he was my karass. If he was, he served it as a wrang-wrang. A wrang-wrang, according to Bokonon, is a person who steers people away from a line of speculation by reducing that line, with the example of the wrang-wrang’s own life, to an absurdity. I might have been vaguely inclined to dismiss the stone angel as meaningless, and to go from there to the meaninglessness of all. But after I saw what Krebbs had done, in particular what he had done to my sweet cat, nihilism was not for me. Somebody or something did not wish me to be a nihilist. It was Krebbs’s mission, whether he knew it or not, to disenchant me with that philosophy. Well, done, Mr. Krebbs, well done.
  5. Your all time favorite books

    hard to say. it is definitely the most gripping of his books ive read. i read that one first, and would probably again if i had to start over. i think i liked the crossing the best though, at least of the ones I have read. i only finished the road a few weeks ago. it has a different tempo, though the story is powerful--definitely more than worthy of all the awards.
  6. Your all time favorite books

    Its amazing, though not for the faint of heart. on my re-read list as well. Also, mccarthy uses an impressionistic writing style that personally took me some time getting used to, but once I did I could not stop. Its one of those books where you walk away feeling like you have gained some tremendous insight, though you cant exactly pinpoint what it is--good, bad or ugly.
  7. Your all time favorite books

    (almost) anything cormac mccarthy. the first two of the border trilogy are fantastically good (never made it through the third). never thought I'd be into apocalypse novels, but i secretly cried at the end of the road. i still get chills thinking about the embrace at the end of blood meridian. reading suttree next. hesse is good too. the glass bead game is my favorite of his. the end of the main story line left me completely paralyzed. steppenwolf was too hippie for my taste, maybe I was not born to be wild. kurt vonnegut is good too. reading cats cradle now, which brings up an interesting question: why is there no subforum on this site for bokononism? another really good book is the man without qualities by musil. the first volume is really cool. very daoist imo. the second, unfinished one is somewhat disjointed (did not make it very far) for space opera, i like alistar reynolds (revelation space, chasm city, pushing ice), hyperion by simmons was good too. the second book in that series was good too, though I can't remember the name. the trial by kafka and nausea by sartre are also memorable. the stranger by camus is good too: why'd he take the shot? how can one pick an all time favorite.
  8. On esotericism: Why the secracy?

    I think in some traditions (mahamudra in particular), it is also important to teach in stages and to bring the pupil to each successive stage before attempting to teach a higher stage. Its not secrecy for secrecy's sake, but a desire for disciples to be able to develop particular/peculiar insights at each stage, in order to gain all qualities of realization. In other words, it is necessary for teaching Dharma in a particular order. There seems to be less secrecy in leap-over practices, such as Nyingma, where the ordering is less important, although I cant say I am very qualified to opine on either, as you dont know secret stuff that you dont know. There is also this anecdote: There once was a fellow who, although he did not have the instructions, decided to practice a secret mantra of meditation in order to be able to fly. He began to repeat the mantra in accordance with directions found in a text. After he finished, he jumped out the window of his fifth story apartment.
  9. The feel of a place/space

    I agree. There is a deep energy in everything and every place. If you are attuned, it can be "felt" (and maybe seen, as in an aura). I think it goes far deeper than the senses, however. Waterfalls are my favorite.
  10. In praise of ideas

    Whether empty, illusory or something else entirely, abstract thought is an important part of life. As a parallel, the phenomenon of sight might be regarded as empty or illusory, but that does not mean one drives down the freeway with eyes closed. Abstract though is a tool that helps us make sense of this world (its helping me to write this post now). Don’t disregard it, use it to your advantage! I am not an advanced meditator by any means, but the practice of just sitting and observing my thoughts and allowing the thoughts disappear into nothingness, like bubbles floating in the breeze, has given me great insight into how I should understand them, praiseworthy or not.
  11. Very unpopular opinions

    I have this vague memory of being a child, sitting in my parents living room in a one piece pair of pajamas. Everything was new. I had no conceptions of what anything should look like, or any conceptions about myself or society. It was just me, coexisting and being with my loving family. For me, that is what reality is. Over time, that childhood presence has since been clouded by a complex web of conceptions and mental patterns that have built up my mind. Yet, when the clouds break, the same child emerges. The reality of this world is you sitting in your backyard like a child, admiring the energy of a magnificent tree with no reflection on what it means or entails. In other words, this life is very real (and wonderful), its our conceptions of it that are empty.
  12. Alien encounters during dream

    My experience is the opposite. I dream about people, then wake up and the world is full of aliens. : ) Turns out, my alien family and friends are pretty cool though.
  13. The Idiots Way

    These quotes are great. One thought I had on "effort" is that great satisfaction can be gotten in life through hard work, discipline, getting things done, and accomplishing something great. From these quotes, one might get the impression that no effort equals no doing, and visa versa. My view is a little different, that unlocking open awareness is the path to achieving ones ultimate potential in life, basically by doing without doing. I am still monkeying with the lock, however : )
  14. Is this forum still about Taoism...?

    My understanding is that the status of Daoism as a "religion," rather than a philosophy, dates back at least to the 13th century, when following a visit from the Quasi-Daoist Monk Ch'ang Ch'un in the winter of 1223, Chinggis Kahn issued a decree (later rumored to be false) giving Daoists tax exempt status. That decree was later recognized by the Yuan dynasty. During that time, there were serious political and philosophical disputes between the Buddhists (the favored religion of the Yuan) and the Daoists, and absent tax exempt status, the Daoist monks would have had a much harder time getting their wu wei on. : ) Interestingly, following much political turmoil between the two sects, in the summer of 1255, Mongke Kan decided that the philosophical issues between the two had to be settled in a public debate. That debate was held and the Daoists were allegedly defeated (although they did not admit defeat). Shortly thereafter there was a second debate in 1258, in which Confucians were established as the referees. And, big suprise, the Daoists were soundly defeated again. Got this from a book called Imperial Nomads by Luc Kwanten.
  15. Is Buddhism a complete path?

    Sometimes the thing you are looking for is found when you stop searching. Look around. Life is amazing, whatever path it puts you on. Buddhist philosophy is just one of many pairs of sneakers you can wear while walking. Don't lose sight of the forest over the sneakers. : )