Reports to Amfortas

Reports to Amfortas

by John Menken


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This is a book about stories. Plato described Socrates, saying, "Remember the stories for they will save you in the end." And it's about stories within stories.
And it's about forgetting. About losing, remembering, and finding. A Native American once told me a story of going through the woods, finding a fork in the trail, and deciding on one of the paths. He discovered that the trail ended nowhere and that from there, it's best to go back to where the fork was, rather than to try and find your way from where you discovered an error, which is very much like a well-known Middle Eastern story of Nasreddin who, when a neighbor found him crawling in his front yard looking for something and asked him what it was, he said it was a key. The neighbor joined him on the ground looking for it. And for a long time, not finding it, he asked the mullah, "was heu sure he dropped it here?" And the mullah said, "Oh no, I dropped it in the house." The neighbor said, "Why are we looking for it here?" The mullah replied, "Oh, it's too dark in the house."
And it is also about language. How do we decide what a word means and how it travels from one language to another? The great storyteller Leo Tolstoy, when setting himself the task of understanding the story of the gospels and looking at the first sentence of John, "En arche en o logos," and noting that logos has either eleven or thirteen chief meanings (which could boil down to four that are possible in the context), and then finding what he could use in Russian, used razumyenie since it actually can carry those four possible meanings. So we can see the undertaking might be quite complex.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781490722894
Publisher: Trafford Publishing
Publication date: 01/28/2014
Pages: 388
Product dimensions: 5.51(w) x 8.50(h) x 0.86(d)

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