Author Topic: What are you currently reading?  (Read 765959 times)

0 Members and 7 Guests are viewing this topic.

Scriptavolant

  • Guest
Re: What are you currently reading?
« Reply #840 on: January 03, 2008, 01:06:27 PM »
Dusty Sklar's " The Nazis and the Occult", Dorset Press,NY,1977.
A fascinatig book, very well written, on a subject very few had
investigated. It explains many awful nazi's deeds and the sick mentality of those monsters.

I saw a documentary, some years ago, on the subject. They stated that Churchill himself tried to oppose the Nazis resorting to occult techniques. Don't know if the approach is merely sensationalist or not, by the way it sounded interesting.

Haffner

  • Guest
Re: What are you currently reading?
« Reply #841 on: January 03, 2008, 01:17:46 PM »


I loved this book. Fascinating insight into the amazing life of Mozart. His letters are charming, witty and reveal insight into his personality and creative music making process.  :)

Cosima Wagner Diaries ~ Vol.1. & 2

I've just started reading this massive tome. Its interesting thus far with a gloomy Gothic undercurrent to the moods and themes presented. I've a long way to go so...  :D





Hey, those look really good! I have been thinking about getting the Cosima diaries at the library, so please let me know how good?

karlhenning

  • Guest
Re: What are you currently reading?
« Reply #842 on: January 03, 2008, 01:20:28 PM »
I loved this book. Fascinating insight into the amazing life of Mozart. His letters are charming, witty and reveal insight into his personality and creative music making process.  :)

Yes, the Spaethling is an excellent read!  It's right here on my shelf at work.

Until I cracked this book open, I had no idea how comparatively small the body of Mozart correspondence is.

Haffner

  • Guest
Re: What are you currently reading?
« Reply #843 on: January 03, 2008, 01:35:40 PM »

karlhenning

  • Guest
Re: What are you currently reading?
« Reply #844 on: January 04, 2008, 10:54:09 AM »
Not quite "currently" (as will shortly be explained), nor have I finished it, and so questions of how good it is must tarry a while . . . some time before the end of the year we got four copies of The Rest Is Noise in at the museum shop, and I had managed to read through something like the first three chapters.  Then, of course, the day came when I arrived at the shop for a shift, and we had sold the last copy.

Last night at the shop, I noted that we had gotten two more copies in, so I re-read the "Dance of the Earth" Chapter, and read "Invisible Men."  At the least, Alex Ross has written a book which is very readable, and there is some good fact at least somewhere on probably every page;  and this is to be commended.

At once, I am inclined to read the rest of it, but not inclined to purchase a copy.  It's quite a hot item at the Boston Public Library (there are some ten or so copies at large as it is, and they see to have ordered ten more which have not yet arrived).

Anyway, largely enjoying it, learning some new things, and being reminded of some things which I once knew, and since forgot . . . .

Offline drogulus

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • Posts: 7104
  • Gypsy, 1970
  • Location: Watertown, MA
Re: What are you currently reading?
« Reply #845 on: January 04, 2008, 01:59:00 PM »
God Is Not Great, How Religion Poisons Everything by Christopher Hitchens.

So far it is my favorite of the anti-religion screeds published in the last year and a half or so.... and definitely the most accessible.

      I haven't finished the Ferguson book. Now I'm reading The Portable Atheist, edited by Christopher Hitchens with an introduction by him that contains the essentials of his position, which he describes accurately as "antitheist" (I would put Dawkins in that category as well, but not Harris or Dennett).

       So far I've read the entries by Lucretius, Spinoza, Hume, and the wonderful excerpt by Boswell as he visits the dying Hume, who near the end of his life recommends Adam Smith's The Wealth Of Nations. There is also an entry by Shelley I haven't finished which contains powerful argument of a decidedly philosophical nature on causation. The book has the advantage of presenting the editors influences as well as his conclusions. I'm looking forward to reading the entries by Ayan Hirsi Ali and especially Ibn Warraq, as well as usual suspects Dawkins, Dennett, etc.
Mozilla/5.0 (Windows NT 10.0; Win64; x64; rv:56.0) Gecko/20100101 Firefox/56.0 Waterfox/56.2.13
      
Mozilla/5.0 (Windows NT 10.0; Win64; x64; rv:64.0) Gecko/20100101 Firefox/64.0

longears

  • Guest
Re: What are you currently reading?
« Reply #846 on: January 05, 2008, 01:37:35 PM »
      I haven't finished the Ferguson book. Now I'm reading The Portable Atheist, edited by Christopher Hitchens with an introduction by him that contains the essentials of his position, which he describes accurately as "antitheist" (I would put Dawkins in that category as well, but not Harris or Dennett).

       So far I've read the entries by Lucretius, Spinoza, Hume, and the wonderful excerpt by Boswell as he visits the dying Hume, who near the end of his life recommends Adam Smith's The Wealth Of Nations. There is also an entry by Shelley I haven't finished which contains powerful argument of a decidedly philosophical nature on causation. The book has the advantage of presenting the editors influences as well as his conclusions. I'm looking forward to reading the entries by Ayan Hirsi Ali and especially Ibn Warraq, as well as usual suspects Dawkins, Dennett, etc.
Misery loves company, eh?

Re. The Rest Is Noise:  About halfway through and still enjoying it quite a bit.  Learning a little about music, a little about history, and a lot about influential personalities.  I've not yet encountered any claims that sent me scrambling to check facts, and there've been a few chuckles along the way.  Just finished the chapters on music under Stalin and Hitler.  Not many chuckles there.  The material on Hitler & Wagner had me once again scratching my head as to how folks can possibly distinguish his hateful anti-Semitic meglomania from his art.  Hitler sure got it, long before the paper-hanging bastard became the surrogate patriarch of Bayreuth.

Scriptavolant

  • Guest
Re: What are you currently reading?
« Reply #847 on: January 05, 2008, 02:23:26 PM »
I've never read Hitchens, but I'm reading Dawkins' unmentionable (I prefered to wait the Italian translation which came with a sensible delay) and finishing Dennett's "Breaking the spell". I'm reading "Philosophy of Mind. An overview for cognitive science" by William Bechtel as well. I usually combine chapters from each book in order to have the feeling to proceed faster  :D
I was looking for a good history book on monks' life as well. Does anyone have a suggestion?

M forever

  • Guest
Re: What are you currently reading?
« Reply #848 on: January 05, 2008, 06:50:16 PM »
I was looking for a good history book on monks' life as well. Does anyone have a suggestion?

Il nome della rosa

longears

  • Guest
Re: What are you currently reading?
« Reply #849 on: January 06, 2008, 06:32:46 PM »
Or:

or perhaps:


or even:
« Last Edit: January 06, 2008, 06:36:27 PM by longears »

George

  • Guest
Re: What are you currently reading?
« Reply #850 on: January 06, 2008, 06:59:22 PM »

I suggest the middle one path, David.  0:)

Offline Operahaven

  • Full Member
  • *
  • Posts: 196
  • Act II of Pelleas/Melisande is the greatest.
Re: What are you currently reading?
« Reply #851 on: January 06, 2008, 07:32:39 PM »
It's certainly an accessible read.  While I agree with some of his basic premises, he goes a bit too far it seems to me.  He's too much of a pessimist IMO -- while organized religion has certainly been at the core of a great many evils over the centuries, there have been massive benefits that he glosses over, or assumes (without much justification) would have appeared without the necessity of faith.   Still, he makes some compelling arguments, and some of his personal stories are good fodder for thought.  I'd certainly recommend it if anyone has an interest in the subject.

Jwinter and Drogulus,

I agree with many things Hitchens says too but it would have been better if he had stressed that the real poison is monotheism, not religion. For example, at least ancient Greek theology does not pretend that their religion provides the right answers. It also recognizes and accepts human fallibility and doesn't promise that everything will work out in the end...
I worship Debussy's gentle revolution  -  Prelude To The Afternoon of A Faun  -  for its mostly carefree mood and its rich variety of exquisite sounds.

Offline PSmith08

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • Posts: 1231
  • Some guy on the internet.
  • Location: Indiana
Re: What are you currently reading?
« Reply #852 on: January 06, 2008, 08:10:22 PM »
Jwinter and Drogulus,

I agree with many things Hitchens says too but it would have been better if he had stressed that the real poison is monotheism, not religion. For example, at least ancient Greek theology does not pretend that their religion provides the right answers. It also recognizes and accepts human fallibility and doesn't promise that everything will work out in the end...

More than that, it more or less guarantees that things won't end up so great for the majority of the shades. The mystery cults (e.g., Eleusis) came along with all manner of passwords for the afterlife and allegories to offer something approximating hope for the dead.

Offline Florestan

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • Posts: 17509
  • Location: Bucharest, Romania
Re: What are you currently reading?
« Reply #853 on: January 07, 2008, 01:04:58 AM »
Just finished Orhan Pamuk's The New Life. Began Henryk Sienkiewicz's The Deluge. Both are excellent.
I compose music because I must give expression to my feelings, just as I talk because I must give utterance to my thoughts. --- Rachmaninoff

ChamberNut

  • Guest
Re: What are you currently reading?
« Reply #854 on: January 07, 2008, 05:22:01 AM »
Found a couple of beauties at a used book store:

Beethoven - Bi-Centennial 1770-1970 by Joseph and Hans Schmidt Schmidt-Georg

A great hardcover book for the coffee table!  Some beautiful illustrations.  12' x 12' book!

also got a paperback oldie:

Schubert - Alfred Einstein


Scriptavolant

  • Guest
Re: What are you currently reading?
« Reply #855 on: January 07, 2008, 12:23:48 PM »
Il nome della rosa

Hey, that's true.
But I was looking for something more strictly historical about the work of the monks in order to preserve Classical culture, and more detailed informations about daily life and cult and Middle Age political scenario. Don't know if Il nome della Rosa gives all this.

I forgot to specify that I was referring mainly to Christian monks, Zen monks are welcomed but maybe later.

Offline orbital

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • Posts: 2469
Re: What are you currently reading?
« Reply #856 on: January 07, 2008, 12:32:46 PM »
Just finished Orhan Pamuk's The New Life.
This is one Pamuk book that I did not enjoy as much as others. Still, it has one of the greatest opening lines of any book I've read.
« Last Edit: January 07, 2008, 12:34:21 PM by orbital »

M forever

  • Guest
Re: What are you currently reading?
« Reply #857 on: January 07, 2008, 12:51:16 PM »
Hey, that's true.
But I was looking for something more strictly historical about the work of the monks in order to preserve Classical culture, and more detailed informations about daily life and cult and Middle Age political scenario. Don't know if Il nome della Rosa gives all this.

I forgot to specify that I was referring mainly to Christian monks, Zen monks are welcomed but maybe later.

There is a small book by Eco, I forgot the exact title, which is basically a commentary on "The Name of the Rose". It explains a lot of these things and why certain details in the story are the way they are to fit historical "reality". This provides many interesting insights already, and there may be a bibliography and reference works listed. I am sure there are a number of very good books about this subject in Italian. I would just hit a well sorted local library and check in the history section.

Kullervo

  • Guest
Re: What are you currently reading?
« Reply #858 on: January 07, 2008, 05:22:46 PM »
Rereading the Odyssey. It's been about 7 years since I studied it in school.

Offline Operahaven

  • Full Member
  • *
  • Posts: 196
  • Act II of Pelleas/Melisande is the greatest.
Re: What are you currently reading?
« Reply #859 on: January 07, 2008, 06:16:59 PM »
More than that, it more or less guarantees that things won't end up so great for the majority of the shades. The mystery cults (e.g., Eleusis) came along with all manner of passwords for the afterlife and allegories to offer something approximating hope for the dead.

Also, as an aside:

Doesn't the existence of many different gods (polytheism) offer a more plausible account than monotheism of the presence of evil and confusion in the world ?
I worship Debussy's gentle revolution  -  Prelude To The Afternoon of A Faun  -  for its mostly carefree mood and its rich variety of exquisite sounds.