Sunday, January 31, 2016

Links of Note, Noted with Notations

* The Tatooine Cycle: Star Wars Episode IV told in the style of a medieval Irish epic. The names are all as authentically medieval Irish as possible, and it has accompanying notes. The opening:

What was the reason for the Tragic Death of Cenn Obi and the Destruction of Da Thféider’s Hostel? Not difficult that.

There was once a great queen of Alt Da Rann and Leia was her name. War had sprung up between her people and those of Da Thféider. She sent messengers to ask for aid from the wildman, Cenn Obi. He lived in the wilderness far to the west. These were the messengers she sent: Síd Tríphe Óg, who knew all the languages of man and beast, and the dwarf, Artú.

* The place where Rei finds Luke Skywalker at the end of The Force Awakens is in the real world Skellig Michael Monastery in Ireland.

I think the Irish may be keeping a secret about their real origins.

* Grace Boey on Mary Astell

* Tolkien and Kullervo

* Robert Frodeman and Adam Briggle argue that the professionalization of philosophy has been to its detriment: When Philosophy Lost Its Way.

* James Matthew Wilson, On the Overweening Pride of the Professorial Class

* Catarina Dutilh Novaes on Metaphors for Argumentation.

* Dana Casey discusses the difficulties and uncertainties of being an urban teacher.

* Unfortunate Metaphors for Teaching at "Math with Bad Drawings"

* How Dion DiMucci came up with the song, "Runaround Sue"

* Richard Chappell discusses the morality of having kids.

* Whit Stillman on his new movie Love and Friendship.

* Andrew Criddle looks at whether Origen can be used as evidence for a forty-day Lenten fast in the third century. (He concludes probably not, despite appearances.)

* Ayn Rand's use of sunflower seeds as a symbol of villainy.

* The Islamic State recently destroyed the oldest monastery in Iraq, Dair Mar Elia. It had been taking a beating in the past few decades; it was vandalized first by the Iraqi army and then by the American army in 2003 because its location made the area a good one for a military base (a US military chaplain, may God look well upon him for it, came upon the American troops engaging in the vandalism and kicked them out, and the US Army, to its credit, started funding for the restoration). But as it happened, its 1400-year existence was coming to an end, anyway. Even ancient monasteries die.

* The seventh row of the periodic table has finally officially been filled. That is, actual existence of some version of each of the elements in the row has been confirmed by synthesis in the laboratory. That brings us up to 118. On to Ununennium! Ununennium, i.e., hypothetical element 119, is a point in the table at which it begins to be difficult to know how to synthesize new elements in a confirmable way in the first place -- the half-life predictable from trends becomes predictably very small after 118, the confirmation requirements are beyond what our current means can guarantee, and the means for simplifying synthesis of heavier elements are becoming less and less useful.

* Richard Marshall interviews Tuomas Tahko on metaphysics.

* John Skalko, Scotus versus Aquinas on the Gifts of the Holy Spirit. (He takes Aquinas's side.)

* Eben Moglen, Legal Fictions and Common Law Legal Theory

* At one time I put out a bleg here for a short story I remember reading in Spanish about that turned on a psychopath's mishearing his girlfriend demand un ramo de hojas azules (a branch of blue petals) as un ramo de ojos azules (a branch of blue eyes). The narrator narrowly escapes because it turns out his eyes are not blue; after which he leaves town as soon as possible. It turns out the story is by Octavio Paz, El ramo azul.

* David Oderberg on bioethics.

* Simon McNamee, On the History and Use of 'Intuitions' in Contemporary Analytic Philosophy

* David Grimes, On the Viability of Conspiratorial Beliefs. A few of the assumptions don't seem perfectly realistic -- e.g., if you look at how real conspiracies get uncovered, it is never a matter of a single leak sufficing, although a single leak might lead to an investigation that would lead to increasing leaks. But it's an interesting approach.

* Duncan Richter, Philosophy and Poetry

* Catherine Legg and James Franklin, Perceiving Necessity. Hume would certainly take some of their cases to be matters of the relations of ideas -- but even that shows that relations of ideas actually have to cover quite a bit.

* Peter Hacker discusses the mind-body problem in philosophy. It's an hour long, but very, very nicely done:



* I've been thinking about what to do for Lent, and one possibility is something with the Divine Office. (I usually do the Office of Readings already.) So I've been looking around at different kinds of online resources for the Divine Office. Here are some interesting ones:

Divinum Officium: Roman Breviary, i.e., Tridentine/Extraordinary Form
Book of Hours: Book of Divine Worship, i.e., "Anglican Use"
Universalis: Liturgy of the Hours, i.e., Ordinary Form. In some ways this is better than the book version -- the English translation of the Liturgy of Hours that you can get in book form is considerably out of date by this point, but Universalis does their own translations from the most recent official version in Latin.
Divine Office.org: Liturgy of the Hours
Liturgy of the Hours: Liturgy of the Hours -- it looks like this would be mostly useful as a reference; it's not very user-friendly, but unlike most sites, you can look up any day of the year quite easily.
MaroniteFaith.com -- the Fanqitho or Prayer of the Faithful; this has Ramsho (Morning Prayer), Safro (Evening Prayer), and Sootoro (Night Prayer), all translated into English.

I haven't been able to find any Byzantine Divine Office versions online, which is a rather serious lack, given that the Byzantine Divine Office is fittingly byzantine.

ADDED LATER: Deacon Anton notes the following website for Byzantine Divine Service; it's a stripped down, basics-only version, but even a basics-only resource for Divine Service is going to be quite rich:

The Dynamic Horologion and Psalter

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