Saturday, March 07, 2020

Mark Driscoll vs St. Jerome on whether Daniel 4 describes Nebuchadnezzar as becoming demon possessed as the reason for going insane

Since publishing the book Win Your War through Charisma, Mark Driscoll has been revisiting the topic of spiritual warfare and diabology from time to time.  Recently he has taken up a penchant I have sometimes seen, ironically, at watchdog blogs in which the headline is a question that turns out to be rhetorical.  "Was X possibly Y?" turns out, when you read the post, to be a declaration that X is totally Y on the basis of Z, whether or not Z turns out to be plausible evidence a concatenation of quotes that may or may not be in contest, or outright fabrication or assertion.  

Earlier this week Driscoll published a post that was titled "Was King Nebuchadnezzar Demon Possessed?"  There's no textual case for that on the basis of any reading of Daniel 4 but Driscoll doesn't let that stop him from asserting away.  That's the TL:DR version for you. If you want to read a more extensive response to Driscoll's claim, which will be quoted extensively ...

Ben Smith at Scripture and Cities on governments and gangsters cf On the Ruin of Britain autopsy on contemporary methods for vetting "calling" to ministry

Playing with using breaks to tighten up layout this weekend.  After all, having gone to the trouble last month to write 22k words on Koshkin's preludes and fugues it would be nice to keep that visible and accessible for folks who might want to see that, because I admit I want people to be able to see that. 

But Ben Smith at the blog Scripture and Cities has some ruminations on governments and gangsters I wanted to mention since this blog does range across topics like music, animation, theology, and cultural and political topics.  Particularly since as I get older and have picked up more about how the United States dealt with Native Americans and also how Native American groups dealt with each other, sometimes using the United States as an ally, Smith has posed a question in the most direct form, once he gets to it. I'll quote him:

On an Overgrown Path on "Clara Schumann versus Robert Schumann", featuring comment that living contemporary women composers need more promotion than the dead ones brought back for new hearings

At the risk of putting the point too plainly, Pliable at the usual blog seems concerned that advocacy for women composers is great in principle but that in practice it can become a variation of tokenism when works from the past are revived and while there's reason to hear composers neglected due to discrimination in the past, Pliable quotes commenter Mathias Broucek saying that the status of living women composers right now is not necessarily helped by digging up neglected women composers from the past who, not to put too fine a point on it, may have been neglected for being what is colloquially known as "second rate"

As quoted ...

another year, another year in which the future of the NEH and NEA may be up in the air

an assortment of quotes ...

Joseph Sowa's "In Praise of Unremarkable Music" as a defense of the average musician being average even after getting through grad school, a pingback to Kyle Gann on the Kleinmeister Factory and "Hollywood"

I came across Sowa's two-parter in praise of unremarkable music in my usual weekly arts readings online.  Part 1 did not have me certain I would go to the effort of reading part 2 but part 2 was a fairly easy read.  Overall the piece reminded me of something I discussed in a post I wrote years ago called "the liberation of being average", in which I share a story:

"One of the most compelling and valuable things I have ever heard in my life was not about excellence, it was about averageness. I was enrolled in a beginning newswriting course at my college. The professor who stepped into the class was a woman in her forties with a simple bob of dark brown hair and dark glasses. She was dressed very simply and once she spoke revealed that she was from New York. She surveyed the class and began with words I will not soon forget, though you'll pardon my paraphrase: Welcome to beginning newswriting. I want to make sure we don't misunderstand each other. Most of you are average writers. Most of you will get average grades. There is nothing wrong with earning a C.""

The idea that higher education would culturally serve the purpose of becoming or being the average is probably not appealing but education in any society is a matter of encouraging and instilling conformity, whether that conformity is social, economic, intellectual, spiritual, physical or literary or what have you.  Perhaps generations of Cold War ideological and political considerations have meant that Westerners do not necessarily, particularly in the United States, want to think of higher education as having the actual goal of bringing people up to an average but it seems that pieces like Sowa's, in one or two parts, can provide an occasion to consider the cognitive dissonance or the double bind of the ideal of excellence aspired to in higher education in contrast to the ... well ... so very often average result. As Sowa recently put it: ... 

Monday, March 02, 2020

SCGS newsletter has review of CDs by Asya Selyutina and Kostas Tosidis, recordings of Koshkin's preludes and fugues vol. 1 and Cycling Modes

While both discs have been out since December 2019 there have not been a ton of English-language reviews of these excellent discs.  The latest issue of Guitar Soundings, the newsletter of the Seattle Classic Guitar Society has published ... someone's ... review of the two Naxos discs.

As readers may already know, we finally got to all of the first 12 preludes and fugues by Nikita Koshkin earlier this year.   Here's an index of posts and links on a prelude and fugue by prelude and fugue basis.

C major
A minor
G major
E minor
D major
B minor
A major
F# minor
E major
C# minor
B major
G# minor