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Hamlet Plot Analysis - best one I’ve found - - - - -

Most good stories start with a fundamental list of ingredients: the initial situation, conflict, complication, climax, suspense, denouement, and conclusion. Great writers sometimes shake up the recipe and add some spice.

Initial Situation
Mom just married Dad's brother. Also, war may be on the way.
Only a month after the old King of Denmark dies, his queen remarries – to his own brother. Hamlet is not happy to have his uncle as his new step-father. On the political front, Prince Fortinbras of Norway plans to invade Denmark.

Dad's ghost says mom's new husband knocked him off. Revenge!
A ghost shows up on the castle battlements, looking suspiciously like the recently deceased King. The ghost has a message for Hamlet: his father's death was no accident. Hamlet is supposed to exact revenge, which, when you're talking about the current King of Denmark and the husband of your mother, can be quite the conflict. Meanwhile, Polonius tells Ophelia, Hamlet's girl friend, to end whatever it is she's doing with Hamlet.

For reasons nobody really understands, months pass with no revenge.
Revenge theoretically shouldn't be too complicated, if you actually get it done. The complication comes when Hamlet doesn't get it done. All he does manage to do is go crazy, which is complicated in its own right, but more so when you're not sure if he's faking it or not. 

The addition of the treacherous pseudo-friends (Rosencrantz and Guildenstern) complicates matters further, as spies tend to do. On the Ophelia front, she's no longer talking to Hamlet. When the former lovers finally meet, he berates her for having all those qualities that, according to him, all women possess (that would be deceit and treachery, and more). Lastly, there's some strange sort of lie-detecting play that Hamlet has devised, which is supposedly going to prove whether or not King Claudius is guilty of murdering the former King.

Confirmed: Mom's new husband guilty! Also, Hamlet argues with his Mom and kills girlfriend's dad.

Some people consider the play-within-the-play as the climax of Hamlet; others argue that Hamlet's confrontation with his mother is more central. One way of thinking about it is to see Hamlet's interaction with Gertrude as the play's emotional climax, while the play-within-the play is the plot's climax. After all, this is the point when Hamlet definitively knows that Claudius is guilty; it's also the first action Hamlet actually takes in the name of advancing his revenge. And Hamlet's plan works: the play within the play – which Hamlet calls "The Mousetrap" – snaps shut on Claudius. Yet the emotional boiling point of the play happens in the next scene, when Hamlet rails on Gertrude and stabs Polonius.

Mom's new husband, Claudius, sends Hamlet away to be killed. Meanwhile, Ophelia dies and her brother plots Hamlet's death with Mom's new husband.
The suspense builds when we wonder if Hamlet is going to die on or after the trip to England. We feel more suspense as Claudius and Laertes plot our prince's death, suspense that only increases with every added back-up plan. Will Hamlet die from one of the umpteen poisoned objects?

Everybody whose name you know dies, except Horatio.
Talk about "casual slaughters" (5.2.366). After four acts of delay, everybody finally gets some revenge, all in about five minutes. In the friendly duel, which quickly becomes completely un-friendly, Laertes manages to wound Hamlet with a poisoned sword. Then, in a truly masterful move, Hamlet grabs the poisoned sword and wounds Laertes back. To clean up all the lose ends, Gertrude dies from poisoning and Hamlet kills Claudius.

Horatio survives. Fortinbras arrives and takes the throne.
Horatio, Hamlet's friend, is basically the only character left standing. He gets to explain to Prince Fortinbras of Norway why there are dead bodies all over the floor. Fortinbras decides he will probably get to be the next King of Denmark, since all of the other contenders are – you guessed it – dead.

http://www.shmoop.com/hamlet/plot-analysis.html -


Tue, August 14, 2012 2:28:37 PM
Student Success Workshops for Fall 2012
"Longmire, Jennie S." <jlongmire@sierracollege.edu>
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Student Success Workshops Fall 2012


Text Reading
Putting Balance in Your Life
Overcoming Math Anxiety
Alan Shuttleworth
Alan Shuttleworth
Michelle Morgan
LR 212
LR 212
Basic Pronunciation
How to Use a Scientific Calculator
Marcia Brock
Lynn Hargrove
LR 212
Tips and Strategies to Succeed in Math 581/582 & Math A
Lynn Hargrove


Advanced Pronunciation
How to Write a Research Paper
Marcia Brock
Michelle Johnson
LR 212
Test Taking
Memory Skills
Save My Semester
Alan Shuttleworth
Alan Shuttleworth
Rebecca Ortega
LR 212
LR 212
Overcoming Math Anxiety
Save My Semester
Lynn Hargrove
Mark Kwoka
LR 212

Sentence Structure and Punctuation
Effective Note-Taking
Robin Persiani
Andrea Neptune
LR 212
LR 212
Creating PowerPoint Presentations
Effective Time Management
Melissa Prinzing
Mark Kwoka

Developing a Paper

The Timed Essay
Andrea Neptune

Nathan Conkle
LR 212

Save My Semester
Mark Kwoka
LR 212



I’ve been studying poetry since college days, ever since Jim Crenner’s course (about 1967). He inspired me then - and I later came to figure out a few things about making a poem, things that are usually true about crafting words. (Each poem, as we make it, demands its own process, special effects, and even punctuation.)
Still I’m a student of poetry; I haven’t given up my studies. So I like to pass on my latest observations.
One aspect of this art that all of us students should allow into our work is the element of humor in poems.
I’d say most of the college class members I teach fail to pick up on the subtle and overt humor - and tasty fancifulness - in poems. To arrive at humor and fancy, we need to set ourselves free, shed our propriety.
How sweet to have some of the most profound poems simply not all that serious! Or they have a vital undercurrent of humor that allows them to “get liftoff” and more varied flights of thought and vision. For example, check out Billy Collins’ “Purity,” on writing poems naked, then writing with no flesh and organs. He ends this way, wrapping the poem up in fancy, wit and humor:

After a spell . . . I remove my penis too.
Then I am all skull and bones typing into the afternoon.
Just the absolute essentials, no flounces.
Now I write only about death, most classical of themes,
in language light as the air between my ribs.

Afterward, I reward myself by going for a drive at sunset.
I replace my organs and slip back into my flesh
and clothes. Then I back the car out of the garage
and speed through woods on winding country roads,
passing stone walls, farmhouses, and frozen ponds,
all perfectly arranged like words in a famous sonnet.

Humor, even a mere undercurrent of it, helps our poems travel/think/imagine anywhere. On a whim, on a grin. Humor lets the poet be a bit wacky! And this is freeing.
So now, how about the low, happily jaded laughter just behind the curtain of “The Emperor of Ice Cream”? Wallace Stevens greets us right off with “Call the roller of big cigars” as if his speaker is a circus barker type - it’s all a kind of sendup on that sort of verbal fanfare.
Still, the poem’s about a wake for a working class lady, and they’re having ice cream as they sensuously gather at her place. It’s their pleasure (ice cream) that flavors the somberness of this wake. It seems the joy and fun of eating ice-cream can’t be shut down by the fact of the woman’s death: “The only emperor is the emperor of ice-cream.” The drive for pleasure ultimately rules all. It’s a sort of sinister humor.
Another comic touch: Her feet stick out from under the sheet that covers her body! They’re “horny” feet to boot.
So, to me, the whole affair is gruesomely, delightfully comic. As a bonus, we get to savor Stevens’ classy and large vocabulary. (Those “concupiscent curds” and “fantails.” And the mention of a type of cheap wood called “deal.”)
Through it all, it’s as if Stevens is saying that ice cream, or sensual pleasure, rules us all.
P.S. Even though his is not my philosophy, the poem is so entirely successful and full of fresh juxtapositions that it wins me over....
How about you? Where do you find your honest laughter?



---the hero's journey: summary of the steps - - -

- - - Departure - moving out of the usual routine life. . . .
- - - The Call to Adventure
The call to adventure is the point in a person's life when she is first given notice that everything is going to change, whether she knows it or not.
- - - Refusal of the Call
Often when the call is given, the future hero refuses to heed it. This may be from a sense of duty or obligation, fear, insecurity, a sense of inadequacy, or any of a range of reasons that work to hold the person in his or her current circumstances.
- - - Supernatural Aid
Once the hero has committed to the quest, consciously or unconsciously, his or her guide and magical helper appears, or becomes known.
- - - The Crossing of the First Threshold
This is the point where the person actually crosses into the field of adventure, leaving the known limits of his or her world and venturing into an unknown and dangerous realm where the rules and limits are not known.
- - - The Belly of the Whale
The belly of the whale represents the final separation from the hero's known world and self. It is sometimes described as the person's lowest point, but it is actually the point when the person is between or transitioning between worlds and selves. The separation has been made, or is being made, or being fully recognized between the old world and old self and the potential for a new world/self. The experiences that will shape the new world and self will begin shortly, or may be beginning with this experience which is often symbolized by something dark, unknown and frightening. By entering this stage, the person shows their willingness to undergo a metamorphosis, to die to him or herself.
- - - Initiation
This involves a higher step in consciousness of the hero. He or she advances in a spiritual or simply ethical way – or earns a new “degree” in a certain spiritual path.
- - - The Road of Trials
The road of trials is a series of tests, tasks, or ordeals that the person must undergo to begin the transformation. Often the person fails one or more of these tests, which often occur in threes.
- - - The Meeting with the Goddess
The meeting with the goddess represents the point in the adventure when the person experiences a love that has the power and significance of the all-powerful, all encompassing, unconditional love that a fortunate infant may experience with his or her mother. It is also known as the "hieros gamos," or sacred marriage, the union of opposites, and may take place entirely within the person. In other words, the person begins to see him or herself in a non-dualistic way. This is a very important step in the process and is often represented by the person finding the other person that he or she loves most completely. Although Campbell symbolizes this step as a meeting with a goddess, unconditional love and/or self unification does not have to be represented by a woman.
- - - Woman as the Temptress
At one level, this step is about those temptations that may lead the hero to abandon or stray from his or her quest, which as with the Meeting with the Goddess does not necessarily have to be represented by a woman. For Campbell, however, this step is about the revulsion that the usually male hero may feel about his own fleshy/earthy nature, and the subsequent attachment or projection of that revulsion to women. Woman is a metaphor for the physical or material temptations of life, since the hero-knight was often tempted by lust from his spiritual journey.
- - - Atonement with the Father
In this step the person must confront and be initiated by whatever holds the ultimate power in his or her life. In many myths and stories this is the father, or a father figure who has life and death power. This is the center point of the journey. All the previous steps have been moving in to this place, all that follow will move out from it. Although this step is most frequently symbolized by an encounter with a male entity, it does not have to be a male; just someone or thing with incredible power. For the transformation to take place, the person as he or she has been must be "killed" so that the new self can come into being. Sometime this killing is literal, and the earthly journey for that character is either over or moves into a different realm.
- - - Apotheosis
To apotheosize is to deify. When someone dies a physical death, or dies to the [small] self to live in spirit, he or she moves beyond the pairs of opposites to a state of divine knowledge, love, compassion and bliss. This is a god-like state; the person is in heaven [higher consciousness] and beyond all strife. A more mundane way of looking at this step is that it is a period of rest, peace and fulfillment before the hero begins the return.
- - - The Ultimate Boon
The ultimate boon is the achievement of the goal of the quest. It is what the person went on the journey to get. All the previous steps serve to prepare and purify the person for this step, since in many myths the boon is something transcendent like the elixir of life itself, or a plant that supplies immortality, or the holy grail.
- - - Return
- - - Refusal of the Return
So why, when all has been achieved, the ambrosia has been drunk, and we have conversed with the gods, why come back to normal life with all its cares and woes?
- - - The Magic Flight
Sometimes the hero must escape with the boon, if it is something that the gods have been jealously guarding. It can be just as adventurous and dangerous returning from the journey as it was to go on it.
- - - Rescue from Without
Just as the hero may need guides and assistants to set out on the quest, often times he or she must have powerful guides and rescuers to bring them back to everyday life, especially if the person has been wounded or weakened by the experience. Or perhaps the person doesn't realize that it is time to return, that they can return, or that others need their boon.
- - - The Crossing of the Return Threshold
The trick in returning is to retain the wisdom gained on the quest, to integrate that wisdom into a human life, and then maybe figure out how to share the wisdom with the rest of the world. This is usually extremely difficult.
- - - Master of the Two Worlds
In myth, this step is usually represented by a transcendental hero like Jesus or Buddha. For a human hero, it may mean achieving a balance between the material and spiritual. The person has become comfortable and competent in both the inner and outer worlds.
- - - Freedom to Live
Mastery leads to freedom from the fear of death, which in turn is the freedom to live. This is sometimes referred to as living in the moment, neither anticipating the future nor regretting the past.

--- source - - - http://www.mcli.dist.maricopa.edu/smc/journey/ref/summary.html
- - - - - - - - - - -
Joseph Campbell: The Hero's Adventure
MOYERS: Why are there so many stories of the hero in mythology?
CAMPBELL: Because that is what is worth writing about. Even in popular novels, the main character is a hero or heroine who has found or done something beyond the normal range of achievement and experience. A hero is someone who has given his or her life to something bigger than oneself. ... The usual hero adventure begins with someone from whom something has been taken, or who feels there is something lacking in the normal experiences available or permitted to the members of his society. This person then takes off on a series of adventures beyond the ordinary, either to recover what has been lost or to discover some life-giving elixir. It is usually a cycle, a going and a returning (italics mine).
From The Power of Myth (p. 123).
--- http://www.drl.tcu.edu/PoC/intro_poc.htm --- SOURCE
--- see also http://www.mcli.dist.maricopa.edu/smc/journey/ref/summary.html ---

- - - - -


The Mythic World of Joseph Campbell


The Hero's Adventure
Overcoming the Trials in Life

Furthermore, we have not even to risk the adventure alone, for the heroes of all time have gone before us. The labyrinth is thoroughly known. We have only to follow the thread of the hero path, and where we we had thought to find an abomination, we shall find a god. And where we had thought to slay another, we shall slay ourselves. Where we had thought to travel outward, we shall come to the center of our own existence. And where we had thought to be alone, we shall be with all the world

....Joseph Campbell = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = =


Other Chapters
Myth and the Modern World

The Function of Myth

Myth and Dreams

The Hero's Adventure in Myth
Metaphor and Transcendence

God and Metaphor

The Importance of Myth

The Call to Adventure

Gaia-Nature as Divinity

How did George Lucas Create Star Wars?
The Influence of Joseph Campbell
and the Hero Deed

From The Power of Myth with Bill Moyers

Moyers: Why are there so many stories of the hero in mythology?

Campbell: Because that's what's worth writing about. Even in popular novels, the main character is a hero or heroine who has found or done something beyond the normal range of achievement and experience. A hero is someone who has given his or her life to something bigger than oneself.

Moyers: So in all of these cultures, whatever the local costume the hero might be wearing, what is the deed?

Campbell: Well, there are two types of deed. One is the physical deed, in which the hero performs a courageous act in battle or saves a life. The other kind is the spiritual deed, in which the hero learns to experience the supernormal range of human spiritual life and then comes back with a message.

Moyers: Does your study of mythology lead you to conclude that a single human quest, a standard pattern of human aspiration and thought, constitutes for all mankind something that we have in common, whether we lived a million years ago or will live a thousand years from now?

Campbell: There's a certain type of myth which one might call the vision guest, going in quest of a boon, a vision, which has the same form in every mythology. That is the thing that I tried to present in the first book I wrote, The Hero With a Thousand Faces. All these different mythologies give us the same essential quest. You leave the world that you're in and go into a depth or into a distance or up to a height. There you come to what was missing in your consciousness in the world you formerly inhabited. Then comes the problem either of staying with that, and letting the world drop off, or returning with that boon and trying to hold on to it as you move back into your social world again.

Moyers: How do I slay that dragon in me? What's the journey each of us has to make, what you call "the soul's high adventure"?

Campbell: My general formula for my students is "Follow your bliss." Find where it is, and don't be afraid to follow it.

Moyers: Is it my work or my life?

Campbell: If the work that you're doing is the work that you chose to do because you are enjoying it, that's it. But if you think, "Oh, no! I couldn't do that!" that's the dragon locking you in. "No, no, I couldn't be a writer or master architect," or "No, no, I couldn't possibly do what So-and-so is doing."

Moyers: When I take that journey and go down there and slay those dragons, do I have to go alone?

Campbell: If you have someone who can help you, that's fine, too. But, ultimately, the last deed has to be done by oneself. Psychologically, the dragon is one's own binding of oneself to one's ego. We're captured in our own dragon cage. The problem of the psychiatrist is to disintegrate that dragon, break him up, so that you may expand to a larger field of relationships. The ultimate dragon is within you, it is your ego clamping you down.

Moyers: I like what you say about the old myth of Theseus and Ariadne. Theseus says to Ariadne, "I'll love you forever if you can show me a way to come out of the labyrinth." So she gives him a ball of string, which he unwinds as he goes into the labyrinth, and then follows to find the way out. You say, "All he had was the string. That's all you need."

Campbell: That's all you need--an Ariadne thread.

Moyers: Sometimes we look for great wealth to save us, a great power to save us, or great ideas to save us, when all we need is that piece of string.

Campbell : That's not always easy to find. But it's nice to have someone who can give you a clue. That's the teacher's job, to help you find your Ariadne thread.

Moyers: Like all heroes, the Buddha doesn't show you the truth itself, he shows you the way to truth.

Campbell: But it's got to be your way, not his. The Buddha can't tell you exactly how to get rid of your particular fears, for example. Different teachers may suggest exercises, but they may not be the ones to work for you. All a teacher can do is suggest. He is like a lighthouse that says, "There are rocks over here, steer clear. There is a channel, however, out there."

Moyers: In all of these journeys of mythology, there's a place everyone wishes to find. The Buddhists talk of Nirvana, and Jesus talks of peace, of the mansion with many rooms. Is that typical of the hero's journey - that there's a place to find?

Campbell: The place to find is within yourself. I learned a little about this in athletics. The athlete who is in top form has a quiet place within himself, and it's around this, somehow, that his action occurs. . . . There's a center of quietness within, which has to be known and held. If you lose that center, you are in tension and begin to fall apart.

What Is A Hero?

The Hero Deed

Examples of the Hero




The Mother As Hero

Moyers: Don't you think we've lost the truth in this society of ours, where is deemed more heroic to go out into the world and make a lot of money than it is to raise children?

Campbell: Making money gets more advertisement. You know the old saying: if a dog bites a man, that's not a story, but if a man bites a dog, you've got a story there. So the thing that happens and happens and happens, no matter how heroic it may be, is not news. Motherhood has lost its novelty, you might say.

Moyers:That's a wonderful image, though- the mother as hero.

Campbell: It has always seemed so to me. That's something I've learned from reading these myths.

Moyers:It's a journey-you have to move out of the known, conventional safety of your life to undertake this.

Campbell: You have to be transformed from a maiden to a mother. That's the big change, involving many dangers.

Moyers: And when you come back from your journey, with the child, you've brought something into the world.

Campbell:Not only that, you've got a life job ahead of you. Otto Rank makes a point that there is a world of people who think that their heroic act in being born qualifies them for respect and support of their whole community.

Moyers: But there's still a journey to be taken after that.

Campbell:There's a large journey to be taken, of many trials.

Moyers: How is consciousness transformed?

Campbell:Either by trials themselves or by illuminating revelations. Trials and revelations are what it is all about.

Moyers: So does heroism have a moral objective?

Campbell:The moral objective is saving the people, or saving a person, or supporting an idea. The hero sacrifices himself for something greater - that's the morality of it. Now, from another position, of course, you might say the idea for which he sacrificed himself was something that should not have been respected. That's a judgement from the other side, but it doesn't destroy the intrinsic heroism of the deed performed.

Moyers:So the hero goes for something, he doesn't just go along for the ride, he's not simply an adventurer"

Campbell:There are both kinds of heroes, some that choose to undertake the adventure and some that don't. In one kind of adventure, the hero sets out responsibly and intentionally to perform the deed. For instance, Odysseus' son Telemachus was told by Athena, " Go find your father." That father quest is a major hero adventure for young people. That is the adventure of finding what your career is, what your nature is, what your source is. You undertake that intentionally. Or there is the legend of the Sumerian sky goddess, Inanna, who descended into the underworld and underwent death to bring her beloved back to life.
Then there are adventures into which you are thrown - for example, being drafted into the army. You didn't intned it, but you're in now. You've undergone a death and resurrection, you're put into a uniform, and you're another creature.

Moyers:Is the adventurer who takes that kind of trip a hero in the mythological sense?

Campbell:Yes, because he is always ready for it. In these stories, the adventure that the hero is ready for is the one he gets. The adventure is symbolically a manifestation of his character. Even the landscape and the conditions of the environment matches his readiness.

Moyers:In George Lucas' Star Wars, Solo begins as a mercenary and ends up a hero, coming in at the last to save Luke Skywalker.

Campbell:Yes. There Solo has done the hero act of sacrificing himself for another.

Moyers:So perhaps the hero lurks in each one of us when we don't know it?

Campbell:Our life evokes our character. You find out more about yourself as you go on. That is why it's good to put yourself in situations that will evoke your higher nature rather than your lower. "Lead us not into temptation."

Moyers:What about happiness? If I am a young person and I want to be happy, what do the myths tell me about happiness?

Campbell:The way to find your happiness is to keep your mind on those moments when you feel most happy, when you really are happy - not excited, not just thrilled, but deeply happy. This requires a little bit of self-analysis. What is it that makes you happy? Stay with it, no matter what people tell you. That is what I call "following your bliss."

Moyers: But how does mythology tell you about what makes you happy?

Campbell: It won't tell you what makes you happy, but it will tell you what happens when you begin to follow your happiness, what the obstacles are that you are going to run into.
For example, there's a motif in American Indian stories that I call "the refusal of suitors." There's a young girl, beautiful, charming, and the young men invite her to marriage. "No, no, no," she says, "there's nobody around good enough for me." So a serpent comes, or, if it's a boy who won't have anything to do with girls, the serpent queen of a great lake might come. As soon as you have refused the suitors, you have elevated yourself out of the local field and put yourself in the field of higher power, higher danger. The question is, are you going to be able to handle it?
Another American Indian motif involves mother and two little boys. The mother says, " You can play around the houses, but don't go north." So they go north. There's the adventurer.

Moyers: And the point?

Campbell: With the refusal of suitors, of passing over a boundary, the adventure begins. You get into a field that's unprotected, novel. You can't have creativity unless you leave behind the bounded, the fixed, all the rules.

Moyers: And life becomes-

Campbell:-harmonious, centered, and affirmative.

Moyers: Even with suffering?

Campbell: Exactly. The Buddhists speak of bodhisattva - the one who knows immortality, yet voluntarily enters into the field of fragmentation of time and participates willingly and joyfully in the sorrows of the world. And this means not only experiencing sorrows oneself but participating with compassion with the sorrow of others. Compassion is the awakening of the heart from bestial self-interest to humanity. The word "compassion" means literally "suffering with."

Moyers:But people ask, isn't myth a lie?

Campbell: No, mythology is not a lie, mythology is poetry, it is metaphorical. It has been well said that mythology is the penultimate truth - penultimate because the ultimate cannot be be put into words. It is beyond words, beyond images, beyond the bounding rim of the Buddhist Wheel of Becoming. Mythology pitches the mind beyond that rim, to what can be known but not told. So this is the penultimate truth.
It's important to live life with the experience, and therefore the knowledge, of its mystery and your own mystery. This gives life a new radiance, a new harmony, a new splendor. Thinking in mythological terms helps to put you in accord with the inevitables of this vale of tears. You learn to recognize the positive values in what appear to be negative moments and aspects of your life. The big question is whether you are going to be say a hearty yes to your adventure.

Moyers:The adventure of the hero?

Campbell:Yes, the adventure of the hero - the adventure of being alive.

= = = = = = = = = =

List of Articles:

The Function of Myth

Myth and Dreams

The Hero's Adventure in Myth
Metaphor and Transcendence

God and Metaphor

The Importance of Myth

Gaia-Nature as Divinity


- - - http://www.whidbey.com/parrott/toms.htm - - -
http://www.mythsdreamssymbols.com/functionsofmyth.html -=-=-=-=-


http://www.loc.gov/loc/lcib/0305/hamlet.html --- important viewpoints on the
ever-intriguing play.

And another view:

http://www.loc.gov/loc/kluge/news/bloom-gazette.html ---

http://elsinore.ucsc.edu/delay/delayBloom.html ---

Here's another challenging piece on Hamlet! ---

And: http://www.pathguy.com/hamlet.htm#ishamletcrazy --- not too well punctuated, but worthwhile!



Can we live with them?


Here's some info to delete or check out! Since you're writing about some of the bigger life questions:

Some material from one of my favorite blogspots.
~ ~ ~

***Not everyone gets interested in such subject matter, but I thought Mark crafted an astonishing yet straight-ahead write-up. Passing it on in case there’s some benefit for you and yours. Also . . . the Witnit blog has some real gems of laughter and love. Highly recommended!***

So . . . here goes – from Mark’s http://www.witnit.org/ (along with a few slight edits by yours truly):

Creating Your Life: Uncomfortable Truths, II

God had finished creating the earth and invited four angels to help him with the final detail: Where to hide the Truth so that it would require great effort for mankind to find It.

The first angel said, “Place Truth on the highest mountain.” The second said, “Place Truth at the bottom of the ocean.” The third said, “Place Truth deep in the earth.”

The fourth angel said, “Sooner than later humans will seek out the highest mountains, dive to the bottom of the oceans, and explore deep within the earth. Place Truth within man himself. It will be the last place he will ever think to find it.”
* * *
What follows is what I’ve been able to put together so far about Truth. Any part of it is subject to change without notice based on further personal experience. More of this than you would believe I know firsthand. I may be crazy, but at least you have to admit it is a pluralistic vision that validates pretty much everyone’s place in this world. Take it for what you will. Since I’m not of a proselytizing nature, I pretty much don’t care if you believe any of this or not. I have nothing to prove. All I know for sure is that you are unlikely to have heard it put this way before.

(If you have a strong reaction to what follows, just relax. Take it in as entertainment, as the ramblings of an unusual mind. I'm not dangerous to anyone. Really!)

So, onward:

• You are Soul, immortal and free.

• Notice that I said you ARE Soul, not that you HAVE a Soul. That’s a big difference. You are not your body. As Soul you take on a body to play in this and other worlds.

• As Soul you have always existed and always will exist. Death is the greatest hoax ever perpetuated on humankind.

• You have lived thousands and perhaps millions of lifetimes, on this world and many others, taking many different bodies and living an endless varieties of lifetimes. [Check out Bill Murray’s Groundhog Day for a near-perfect analogy for the concept of many lives and finally learning to give and receive love.]

• Everything you can imagine actually exists somewhere. That’s why you can imagine it.

• Even though reincarnation is a fact of life, it is not the caricature some make it out to be. Generally speaking, you do not “go backwards.” The bug you step on is not your dead grandmother.

• This universe, and every other one, exists as a kind of playground and school for Soul, the real you. The main law is that you have to live with the consequences of everything that you think, do, and say. What you think, do, and say may come back to you instantly or more likely in other lifetimes. That’s why life may appear to be unfair.

• Life is perfectly fair. There are no victims. Nothing can come to you or be kept away from you except in accordance with your state of consciousness. [So a grand question would be, How can I continually refine the texture and scope of my state of consciousness?]

• You get to play in these worlds of matter, energy, space, and time as long as there is a role to play that interests you, and as long as you owe a debt; that is, as long as you still have something you thought, did, or say that is waiting to “come back” to you.

• Every heaven (and hell) exists, and you don’t have to wait until you die to visit.

• There is no sin, nor any spiritual value to fear, guilt, and shame, other than understanding that they can keep you from moving forward.

• You get to play every role: male and female and everything in between, master and slave, rich and poor, black and white and every other color, race, ethnicity, and religious or non-religious background, the great leader and the bad leader, the great follower and the bad follower, the entertainer, the artist, the musician, the scientist, the inventor, the starship captain, and everything else you can imagine.

• The higher worlds are available to you through Soul travel, dreams and other quite simple techniques. Like anything else, these are skills that require effort and love to learn and apply.

• Your dreams are real. Many are symbolic, but some are you leaving your body and visiting actual places and actual people.

• The closest “heaven” to this world is popularly called the Astral plane. This is where you usually go when you dream. The heavens of Hinduism and yogas and many emotionally based religions reside here. Paramahansa Yogananda’s book “Autobiography of a Yogi” gives a fair description of this place. Also the Robin Williams movie “What Dreams May Come” gives some interesting examples.

• There are many other "planes." The Causal (past-life records), Mental (the heavens of Buddhism and Christianity reside here . . . also more Hinduism), Etheric (archetypes and symbols). . . . And these don't include the Soul planes, where the real action is. The difficult thing about Soul planes is: they exist beyond language, image, time, and space. Thus, they are rather hard to talk about.

• Most dream books are a waste of time. We each have our own symbols and places we go. You can begin to learn your own dream territory by keeping a dream journal. The more you work to record your dreams, the more you will remember, and the more you will be able to interpret your own dreams.

• Past lives can be recalled, but it is not always a comfortable experience. Usually, it’s better to have the experience naturally rather than rely on others to tell you. Charlatans are the rule in this world. Very few people have the ability to tell you your past lives. And those who do will rarely let you know or bother to set up shop.

• Every religion, every faith and non-faith, has some truth to it. Every path that everyone is on is legitimate. We are all perfectly at this point where we are supposed to be. We can’t honestly tell others that we have their answers.

• The spiritually experienced cannot always be recognized based on appearance. The drunk in the street can be more spiritually advanced than the priest in the pulpit.

• The people who seem to be the most challenging to you in your life are often Souls who volunteered to take on that role so that you'd grow and learn the lesson.

• Sometimes it can take several lifetimes to learn a single lesson.

• No matter where you are in your life, there is a next step. You can always ask life directly to give you more direct hints as to what that next step is. It can come in the form of a Waking Dream; that is, as if life is giving you symbols or a scenario to help you wake up to your next step.

• Because your nature is eternal, there is no rush. You don’t have to believe anything right now. You can take it at your own rate. If you like your life as it is, fine. Then stay there. If you want something else, experiment. Maybe there’s something here for you.

• Life runs in cycles of Vision, Action, and Balance (Rest).

• Traveling out of the body is a reality that can be learned. Usually it is best to have an experienced guide.

• The best guide is as close to you as your heartbeat and has been with you since the beginning of your journeys into these worlds. You carry the Truth inside you, wherever you are, wherever you go. You are never alone, no matter how hard the lesson you're going through.

• The easiest way to contact this inner teacher is to have a childlike trust in it and your ability to contact it. Just open your heart and ask.

• Imagination is the spiritual key to unlock the higher worlds. Anything you put your attention on will eventually manifest. You are much more the creator of your life than you realize. You can be free. You only need to begin walking out of your self-constructed prisons, since none hold you there but yourself.

• There is a spiritual exercise that you can do. It is based on the word HU. This word is not owned by any religion. In the Oxford English Dictionary definition of “God” you will find HU [pronounced like the word “hue”] as one source. HU was the ancient name for the Sphinx in Egypt. It is sung by the Sufis. It is the name of an ancient Celtic God. It is known in many forms in many different teachings. It is the lost chord, the secret word that everyone seeks out.

• HU is a kind of lovesong to God, however you think of God. HU is sung in long drawn-out breaths: HHHHUUUUUUUUUUUU. If you sing it tonight – gently, over and over – before you go to bed, you might be surprised at the worthwhile experiences you have.

• The good thing about HU is that you don’t have to go through any religion or any priest or any third-party authority to have direct contact with the spiritual guide and teacher that resides within you and has been your companion since the dawn of your journey.

• Singing HU every day for even 5 minutes (20 minutes is better) will transform your life in incredible ways. (I've been doing it now for almost 30 years.)

• HU can relieve physical pain, and bring emotional stability. It can unlock and release mental fixations.

• The only rule is that if you are smoking pot or using any other illegal psychoactive drug, do not sing HU. It just might literally drive you crazy.

• When you sing HU, you may experience Spirit or God (whatever IT is) as Sound and Light. You may see a blue light (or some other color) in your Spiritual Eye, between your eyebrows, or hear a tone or music or tuning fork in your ear. Spirit will communicate in a higher vibratory language. Pay attention when you see or hear these. You may find that you begin to acquire an understanding of things without being told.

• HU also works as spiritual protection. If you are afraid, sing HU for a few minutes. If you are in a dream that scares you, if you remember to sing HU in the dream, you will find yourself immediately transported to a safe place. Incredible but true. You can try it!
• The primary spiritual law of life is, You Gain All By Giving All. What that means will sooner or later come to you. Spiritual Laws are real and in operation whether you believe in them or not: Law of Karma, Law of Harmonics, Law of Economy, Law of Love. And others. . . .

• You are here to learn how to give and receive Divine Love. You will have to first move through all the illusions of love to eventually discover the difference. But again, there is no rush. You have all the time in the universes.
* * *
Fairly pluralistic vision, huh? If you happen to try HU and have any interesting experiences you want to share, please let me know. Over time, I may share some of my experiences, dream experiences, waking dreams, out-of-body experiences, and past lives.

That is, if I don’t get beaten up too much by my readers. Since I have nothing to prove (or more accurately, nothing I CAN prove), then I don’t really care if anyone believes me or not.

But whenever someone finds something that can benefit others, that can help them become more free as an individual, and release them from constraints, it’s natural to want to share.

You don’t have to believe any of this to experiment and find out firsthand for yourself. Nothing I say needs to be believed. It’s all waiting for your direct, personal experience. That’s more proof than I can ever offer.

By the way, I'm not really all that interested in talking publicly about the actual spiritual path I pursue. But if you try HU for a month and you're getting results, e-mail me and I may talk to you about it. I'm not interested in conversion. Just sharing.

You can download the sound of hundreds of people singing HU here. Put it on your desktop, loop it, and let it play in the background.

Let me know if you would like to see Uncomfortable Truths, III. Although I understand if you think this is enough.

Happy trails,


Also . . . find, at Witnit, The Satan Maneuver, a Blog Novel by Mark Alexander Copyright 2003-2007. Guaranteed to be a new experience for us all!
~ ~ ~
The Truman Show and Intrusion
- - - - http://www.leaderu.com/humanities/trumanshow.html - - - -
By John Myers

The Truman Show is about the intrusion of the media in the lives of celebrities and the disruption such scrutiny causes, such as in the life of Princess Diana. Or, it's a movie about the intrusion of the media into all of our lives, with shows like Oprah and Jerry Springer showcasing the lives of "average" people, delving into every nook and cranny of our private lives. It means that with the nature of the media today, we have no private life. That's what The Truman Show was trying to illustrate.

Or was it?

While there are other movies in the works with similar storylines (the public following the life of a particular person through live transmission), The Truman Show was the first and for that reason will become and remain a classic of the genre. The story is not so far fetched--a world built to broadcast a live soap opera 24 hours a day; a soap opera in which the principal figure is the only one not aware that it is all a set-up. Today, hundreds of people around the world have subjugated themselves to 24-hour-a-day scrutiny via the internet and live webcams. The cameras are set up in their homes and offices, and one individual has even installed one on himself that broadcasts directly through a satellite uplink. Of course all of these individuals have volunteered and even paid for their lives to be put on display. In the movie The Truman Show, Truman had no choices--ever. His life was orchestrated moment by moment for him--even down to what friends he would have and whom he would marry. He was totally unaware throughout his life that he was in a gilded cage. That is the essence of the story--not the aspects involving the media. This the key to unlocking the message of the movie.

Oh, there's a message all right, and it's not hidden very deep; in fact, the producers and screenwriters made it as plain as they could.

Let me put it this way: there was a man and he lived in a beautiful place in which everything was taken care of for him. He had all he needed to live...all the food, all the resources. The climate in his environment was kept warm and free of pollution and disease. He had an easy job, too--really unnecessary given the big picture. Someone was responsible for this man's life and for the world he lived in; someone who controlled it moment by moment--someone who ensured that the man did not come to any harm. This someone even arranged for a companion for the man. And so the man and his wife lived happily...or at least until one day when the man suddenly realized that it was all contrived--his world was a fake. He discovered that he really had no choices, that he had no control over his life, and he felt smothered. Humans are creatures that need space; they need room to roam and room to experience. The man discovered he was like a caged animal--an experiment. The beauty and ease of life the man was used to soon looked plastic and false and he despised it. Then the man began to fear; he was afraid because he didn't know what the controller would do; he realized he was at the whim of the controller. The controller could not be inherently good, because the controller was withholding the very thing the man needed to really live: freedom. Then the man saw his chance to escape from under the oppression of his controller and he made his courageous getaway. And the rest of humanity has cheered his decision ever since. Anyone seeking to return to that subservient world is seen as a misguided fool and masochist.

Of course you know I'm speaking of Adam: the "true man," the original man. The controller is God, Christ, or Christof, as the show names Him. The evidence for this analogy is everywhere in The Truman Show, and not just in the names. The crew of the show working with the show's producer and director, Christof, wear T-shirts emblazoned with "Love him, Protect him." We see the irony of Christof being described as "a man who covets his privacy and seldom grants interviews." At the conclusion of the show, when Christof reveals himself to Truman through a booming loudspeaker from the sky, his first words are, "I am the Creator...of a TV show . . ." When Christof is confronted by one seeking Truman's release, Christof states, "Truman can leave whenever he wants to. We are not forcing him to stay here." Of course, the irony here is that Truman first has to realize that he has something to leave. And finally we see that Christof has the power to crush Truman with just the touch of a finger.

Ultimately, however, the movie screenplay props up a straw man. The storyline is deceptive--almost maliciously so--because it perpetuates a centuries-old lie. The real story of Adam is that he and Eve had to be forced to leave the garden. And even then God had to place a flaming sword across the entrance to keep them and all future generations out. God forced them out because they did not abide by their contract. Adam and Eve, and their successive generations, desperately wanted back in out of the harsh conditions they found themselves in. Adam and Eve found that the cage was outside Eden, and this one wasn't gilded.

God's enemy would love for us to believe that Adam longed to be free from the oppressive control of God. He would long for us to believe that Adam had no relationship with God and that God had no real interest in the welfare of Adam. Satan would love for us to belive that Adam was just a toy to God; an amusement.

The truth is that Adam had to leave Eden against his will--even after eating the fruit and "knowing good and evil" he still wanted to stay and enjoy the life he was used to. The truth is Adam would walk with God in the cool of the evening every day and they would converse. The truth was that Adam fell for the same delusion of grandeur that Satan did: to become like God Himself.

The lie is that there is no such thing as free will in God's world.

The Bible tells us that Satan is the ruler of this world. So, under The Truman Show scenario, it is out of the frying pan, and into the fire: Out from God's world and into Satan's.

I encourage you to rent and watch The Truman Show again and look for those not-so-hidden clues. I believe you will find the same theme in Pleasantville (a picturesque town with everything just perfect for the residents, until they realize that they've been confined to black and white, to existence without choice), Ed TV and even Titanic (a woman who lives in a gilded cage in which everything she could possibly long for is at her fingertips, except for her freedom--her free will).

And reread Genesis, chapters one through three. I think you'll find quite a different story than you're being led to believe.

Movies today are the new literature. They shape our culture instead of interpret it. We are affected and not only entertained. I urge you to go into the theatre will all your wits about you. Do some analysis afterwards. And don't be fooled.
WORKS CITED PAGE - - - - - - -
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Please read this information
and do the first 2 sets of quizzes.
Check your answers. Hope this will make you
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--- simply the best,

Tim B.