Even thou canst give me neither thought nor thing,

May 14th, 2018
No Gravatar

Were it the priceless pearl hid in the land,

Which if I fix thereon a greedy gaze,

Becomes not poisen that doth burn and cling;

Their own bad look my foolish eyes doth daze,

They see the gift, see not the giving hand—

From the living root the apple dead I wring.

GM

Screwtape explains the law of undulation:

May 1st, 2018
No Gravatar

My dear Wormwood,

So you ‘have great hopes that the patient’s religious phase is dying away’, have you? I always thought the Training College had gone to pieces since they put old Subgob at the head of it, and now I am sure. Has no one every told you about the law of Undulation?
Humans are amphibians– half spirit and half animal. (The Enemy’s determination to produce such a revolting hybrid was one of the things that determined Our Father to withdraw his support from Him.) As spirits they belong to the eternal world, but as animals they inhabit time. This means that while their spirit can be directed to an eternal object, their bodies, passions, and imaginations are in continual change, for as to be in time means to change. Their nearest approach to constancy, therefore, is undulation– the repeated return to a level from which they repeatedly fall back, a series of troughs and peaks. If you had watched your patient carefully you would have seen this undulation in every department of his life– his interest in his work, his affection for his friends, his physical appetites, all go up and down. As long as he lives on earth periods of emotional and bodily richness and liveliness will alternate with periods of numbness and poverty. The dryness and dullness through which your patient is now going are not, as you fondly suppose, your workmanship; they are merely a natural phenomenon which will do us no good unless you make a good use of it.
To decide what the best use of it is, you must ask what use the Enemy wants to make of it, and then do the opposite. Now it may surprise you to learn that in His efforts to get permanent possession of a soul, He relies on the troughs even more than on the peaks; some of His special favourites have gone through longer and deeper troughs than anyone else. The reason is this. To us a human is primarily food; our aim is the absorption of its will into ours, the increase of our own area of selfhood at its expense. But the obedience which the Enemy demands of men is quite a different thing. One must face the fact that all the talk about His love for men, and His service being perfect freedom, is not (as one would gladly believe) mere propaganda, but an appalling truth. He really does want to fill the universe with a lot of loathsome little replicas of Himself– creatures whose life, on its miniature scale, will be qualitatively like His own, not because he has absorbed them but because their wills freely conform to His. We want cattle who can finally become food; He wants servants who can finally become sons. We want to suck in,, He wants to give out. We are empty and would be filled; He is full and flows over. Our war aim is a world in which Our Father Below has drawn all other beings into himself: the Enemy wants a world full of beings united to Him but still distinct.
And that is where the troughs come in. You must have often wondered why the Enemy does not make more use of His power to be sensibly present to human souls in any degree He chooses and at any moment. But you now see that the Irresistible and the Indisputable are the two weapons which the very nature of His scheme forbids Him to use. Merely to override a human will (as His felt presence in any but the faintest and most mitigated degree would certainly do) would be for Him useless. He cannot ravish. He can only woo. For His ignoble idea is to eat the cake and have it; the creatures are to be one with Him, but yet themselves; merely to cancel them, or assimilate them, will not serve. He is prepared to do a little overriding at the beginning. He will set them off with communications of His presence which, though faint, seem great to them, with emotional sweetness, and easy conquest over temptation. Sooner or later He withdraws, if not in fact, at least from their conscious experience, all those supports and incentives. He leaves the creature to stand up on its own legs– to carry out from the will alone duties which have lost all relish. It is during such trough periods, much more than during the peak periods, that it is growing into the sort of creature He wants it to be. Hence the prayers offered in the state of dryness are those which please Him best. We can drag our patients along by continual tempting, because we design them only for the table, and the more their will is interfered with the better. He cannot ‘tempt’ to virtual as we do to vice. He wants them to learn to walk and must therefore take away His hand; and if only the will to walk is really there He is pleased even with their stumbles. Do not be deceived, Wormwood. Our cause is never more in danger than when a human, no longer desiring, but still intending, to do our Enemy’s will, looks round upon a universe from which every trace of Him seems to have vanished, and asks why he has been forsaken, and still obeys.
But of course the troughs afford opportunities to our side also. Next week I will give you some hints on how to exploit them,

You affectionate uncle
Screwtape

In everything on this earth that is worth doing, there is a stage when no one would do it,

April 20th, 2018
No Gravatar

except for necessity or honor. It is then that the Institution upholds a man and helps him on to the firmer ground ahead. Whether this solid fact of human nature is sufficient to justify the sublime dedication of Christian marriage is quite an other matter, it is amply sufficient to justify the general human feeling of marriage as a fixed thing, dissolution of which is a fault or, at least, an ignominy. The essential element is not so much duration as security. Two people must be tied together in order to do themselves justice; for twenty minutes at a dance, or for twenty years in a marriage In both cases the point is, that if a man is bored in the first five minutes he must go on and force himself to be happy. Coercion is a kind of encouragement; and anarchy (or what some call liberty) is essentially oppressive, because it is essentially discouraging. If we all floated in the air like bubbles, free to drift anywhere at any instant, the practical result would be that no one would have the courage to begin a conversation. It would be so embarrassing to start a sentence in a friendly whisper, and then have to shout the last half of it because the other party was floating away into the free and formless ether. The two must hold each other to do justice to each other. If Americans can be divorced for “incompatibility of temper” I cannot conceive why they are not all divorced. I have known many happy marriages, but never a compatible one. The whole aim of marriage is to fight through and survive the instant when incompatibility becomes unquestionable. For a man and a woman, as such, are incompatible.

 

GKC

 I am quite ready to respect another man’s faith;

April 12th, 2018
No Gravatar

but it is too much to ask that I should respect his doubt, his worldly hesitations and fictions, his political bargain and make-believe.

The Christian ideal has not been tried and found wanting. It has been found difficult; and left untried.

GKC

Read More:

What Is Wrong With The World

Gloriously wasteful, O my Lord, art thou!

March 2nd, 2018
No Gravatar

Sunset faints after sunset into the night,
Splendorously dying from thy window-sill–
For ever. Sad our poverty doth bow
Before the riches of thy making might:
Sweep from thy space thy systems at thy will–
In thee the sun sets every sunset still.

GM

various and sundry

February 15th, 2018
No Gravatar

It is a crazy world we live in isn’t it? From where I look out I see an unusual amount of pure and unabated apoplexy. Our society appears to be in trouble. Personally I do my best to not let the general hysteria of the neurotic media influence my day to day too much… but the screams are getting hard to ignore. Friends, colleagues, neighbors all suffer from the din. GK Chesterton once said something to the effect of : we are only influenced by the apparatus we allow to influence us… meaning we can’t hear the insanity if we don’t listen. I agree. CS Lewis gave up newspapers entirely during WW2, primarily because he found them to be so consistently inaccurate. He said that though he was very interested in the “news” of hostile maneuvers and attacks – by the time it was reported and printed it was either hopelessly flawed or largely irrelevant. Regarding wars – I believe we are experiencing not only seismic shifts and increased violence in the Middle East, with great power and hate aimed at Israel, our own USA has devolved into what appears to be some kind of coup authored by Hillary Clinton and the FBI, and the stench appears to be all over the Obama DOJ and Democratic Party as well. Bizarre and epic all at once. From my own view it is hard to know who – if anyone, is really being honest. if things really are as criminal as the accusers say people will go to jail. Also in the news every day about 115 people die from opiates, prescription pain relievers, heroin and fentanyl. Fentanyl killed both Prince and Tom Petty. Its heartbreaking so many people are trying to numb themselves from feeling their pain, to the point of death. BTW I think many of these people suffer from physical, spiritual, emotional and psychological pain as well. I will write later about projects I am doing… in the meantime :

Man finds it hard to get what he wants, because he does not want the best; God finds it hard to give, because He would give the best, and man will not take it. George MacDonald

new song and video > facebook kid

November 21st, 2017
No Gravatar

facebook_kidfnl from david hill on Vimeo.

OK so this song is a laugh about our modern emphasis on virtual relationships… don’t get me wrong – I like virtual technology, it is just strange to see so many people standing next to people in real life – but staring into their phones, oblivious to their surroundings. I have seen families of 4 at dinner tables in restuarants with each person staring into their phone…it’s ridiculous. The “Facebook Kid” is the one that is probably a little carried away with the virtual if you know what I mean. The Facebook max for friends is 5000, but I doubt I have 5 friends I could really rely on in the absolute worst of times… just sayin. I got the idea for this song while floating on a boat completely offline in every way shape and form. I did the one man band thing – and thought a video would be good to shoot as well. Green screens are fun because you can put whatever you want in the background – and I did. I shot the video in my dining room and driveway in direct sun – so it has some nice detail.facebook kid (audio only)

I’m the facebook kid, I feel fine

I got 5000 friends up to minute timeline

My cat just went viral I’m social dude

Got myself emojis no matter what the mood

I’m the facebook kid

I’m the facebook kid can you relate, all these ladies and I can’t get a date

24/7 I’m found online, the thumbs up baby its my bread its my wine

Here’s my latest selfie, my latte art, my over filtered sunset – yeah that’s just a start

Cause what’s really screaming, I’m sure you’ll agree – is arguing politics we watch on TV

I’m the facebook kid

la la la la la la la 

solo 

hahahahaha

 

 

On enemy ground

November 2nd, 2017
No Gravatar

Screwtape  twists the gift of pleasure :

 Never forget that when we are dealing with any pleasure in it’s healthy and normal and satisfying form, we are, in a sense, on the Enemy’s ground. I know we have one many a soul through pleasure. All the same, it is His  invention, not ours.  He made all of the pleasures: all our research so far has not been able us to produce one. All we can do is to encourage the humans to take the pleasures which our enemy has produced, at times, or in ways, or in degrees, which he has for bidden. Hence we always try to work away from the natural condition of any pleasure to that and which it is at least natural, least redolent of its Maker, and least pleasurable. An ever increasing craving forever diminishing a pleasure is the formula. It is more certain; and it’s better style. To get the man’s soul and give him nothing in return – that is what really gladdens our father’s heart. And the troughs are the time for beginning the process.

Criminal?

October 20th, 2017
No Gravatar

I don’t post a lot about the music business for different reasons. Even though I have a lot of experience, and even have done things many people would consider having “made it” I still don’t feel like I have it figured out. I have a similar thing about advice in general. No doubt people like to hear about how to succeed, but if anyone has spent anytime reading here you see pretty quick I have a bit of a philosophical view on success, further – and I mean this seriously, I believe there are too many people missing the operative word with regard to music as in “play” music… just like “play” sports. Sure it is a multi billion dollar business, but far too few people play anymore. Having said that, today I will be posting briefly about some disturbing trends in the music business. Rodney Jerkins is a producer writer who co-wrote the top 10 Justin Bieber hit As Long As You Love Me. His writing partner owned 20% of this top 10 hit. His royalty statement had him earning$149,000.00 in 3 years. Top 10 hit, 3 years in, $149,000.00 from BMI. I’ll post part of the article then a link:

“The song played on the radio, it had 347,820 spins.  The royalty amount on that alone, was $53,000.”

“Let’s fast-forward to this page, the interesting page.

“Sirius XM, not bad.  1,509 spins, earned him $765 dollars.

“You ready for this?

“Pandora: 38,225,700 spins earned him $278.

[audience laughs; starts talking; one person says ‘WOW!’]

“I’m not finished.

[audience quiets down]

“YouTube: 34,220,900 spins earned him $218.17.

[chatter in the audience]

“Now I did the math for you guys.  That’s on 20%.  If he were to own 100% of the song, on YouTube he would have earned $1,100.

“If he owned 100% of the song on Pandora, he would have made $1,400.

[audience member: ‘jeez’]

“That’s why I wanted to get involved.  Because to me, looking at those numbers, that’s criminal.                    LINK TO ENTIRE ARTICLE

I believe it is criminal. I believe it is unsustainable… it is unethical. With music licensing I made more on 1 song I write than 34,220.900 plays on YouTube (or Pandora). As an example I wrote a tune that MTV used repeatedly on a show. Every time the show played I made $300.00 ($150.00 actually after the split with Jingle Punks) The show repeats, rolls out to Europe etc, and the checks keep coming in for me every 4 months. Granted – I have no radio play (yet), and I am just taking one example… but Pandora is the same – and I would venture to say – most streaming is as well. It is horrible. Currently I don’t use any streaming services. Not streaming on these commercial sites was never a conscious plan… but at the moment it seems counter-intuitive if one wants to maintain control of their intellectual property / publishing / profits / creative sovereignty. Anyway – thought I’d share because if you are a musician, and you write – you need to be alert and vigilant. Til next time….

Father of me, thou art my bliss secure.

October 19th, 2017
No Gravatar

Make of me, maker, whatsoe’er thou wilt.
Let fancy’s wings hang moulting, hope grow poor,
And doubt steam up from where a joy was spilt–
I lose no time to reason it plain and clear,
But fly to thee, my life’s perfection dear:–
Not what I think, but what thou art, makes sure.

GM