Axver (axver) wrote,

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The Screwtape letters, rugby or not, DVD burning hassles, and other topics.

I was going to post about the New Zealand versus Argentina and Australia versus England rugby union matches, but I feel I've whined enough about them as it is and don't feel like going on about them any more. In any case, NZ won, which was good, while England lost, which was bad. NZ will win the Tri-Nations and Bledisloe; I'm not worried about that.

My Internet has suddenly started to work very well. It's as if Dart want to win me back. Pfft, not going to work. Go 'Node!

Though speaking of stuff not working well, why am I not being notified of some comments? Grr, this is aggravating. Whatever's causing errors here better get its act together sometime soon.

You know, I think this statistic is much higher than it should be, but we all know about my hatred of drugs, thus: 98% of teenagers do or have tried pot. If you're one of the 2% that haven't, put this in your journal. I never thought I'd post one of those sentence things, but sometimes I'm willing to make exceptions for something I feel passionately about.

Anyway. I've just met always_rejoice and he's encouraged me to finally get around to reading The Screwtape Letters by C. S. Lewis ... and now I can't comprehend why I didn't read it sooner! I've only read the first letter, but wow, it's so good and I love it.

Background: the letters are communication between Screwtape and Wormwood, two of Satan's demons.

'It sounds as if you supposed that argument was the way to keep him out of the Enemy's clutches. That might have been so if he had lived a few centuries earlier. At that time the humans still knew pretty well when a thing was proved and when it was not; and if it was proved they really believed it. They still connected thinking with doing and were prepared to alter their way of life as the result of a chain of reasoning. But what with the weekly press and other such weapons we have largely altered that. Your man has been accustomed, ever since he was a boy, to have a dozen incompatible philosophies dancing about together inside his head. He doesn't think of doctrines as primarily "true" of "false", but as "academic" or "practical", "outworn" or "contemporary", "conventional" or "ruthless". Jargon, not argument, is your best ally in keeping him from the Church. Don't waste time trying to make him think that materialism is true! Make him think it is strong, or stark, or courageous—that it is the philosophy of the future. That's the sort of thing he cares about.

The trouble about argument is that it moves the whole struggle onto the Enemy's own ground. He can argue too; whereas in really practical propaganda of the kind I am suggesting He has been shown for centuries to be greatly the inferior of Our Father Below. By the very act of arguing, you awake the patient's reason; and once it is awake, who can foresee the result? Even if a particular train of thought can be twisted so as to end in our favour, you will find that you have been strengthening in your patient the fatal habit of attending to universal issues and withdrawing his attention from the stream of immediate sense experiences. Your business is to fix his attention on the stream. Teach him to call it "real life" and don't let him ask what he means by "real".'

Last night was the night of DVD burning chaos. I had so much trouble burning the first disc of the ZooTV Stockholm DVD it's not funny, and I still don't know what caused it seeing I had no problems a few days ago when I first burnt it. As it is, I wasted two blanks on the thing, so it's really lucky I found that awesome 25 DVDs for $25 deal. If I hadn't ... wow, I'd be ticked. The other DVDs I used were 5 for $15. Glad I made no errors there. But now, I've successfully burnt the copies of Stockholm that I needed to for a couple of trades, and hopefully soon I'll also be receiving my end of the deals. I love trading.

I also love books. And writing. I need a job so that I can afford to buy more books - I now have this sudden urge to compile a collection of Lewis and Chesterton - and I need more time to write in. Now that I've started to really get back into my writing, I'm enjoying it again, and it's such a welcome relief. I missed this. I'm still horribly depressed about it and I'm not overly sure if I should keep writing, but it's fun at the moment so I'm sticking with it.

You know what's funny? People who try to win back people through MSN screen names. Burnsy, give it up; there's a point where you have to accept you've lost. Those screen names are becoming such a joke, and a bad one at that. Though what I love is that it seems I was right about teenage and Internet relationships all along. I love it when I'm right.

U2 MUST play Even Better Than The Real Thing on the next tour. Go crank the 28 August 1993, Dublin performance to see just how amazing it is. Woah, so good. I think I nearly broke my headphones just then.
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