Tag Archives: english

the future of public libraries

The Great Library of Alexandria in Alexandria, Egypt might have been destroyed eons ago, but public libraries in every continent across the seven seas are going strong both as municipal assets and cultural repositories. Libraries are no longer elite academic institutes for the esoteric religious and the moneyed echelons of society whetting their intellectual vanity and superiority. The democratization of libraries as a public institution of shared and exchanged knowledge has made it possible for every class to access the symbolic fortresses of universe knowledge.

According to Stuart Kells, author of The Library: A Catalogue of Wonders and Shakespeare’s Library, libraries are “civic infrastructure,” which functions as pathways to literacy and social engagement where an exchange of information and propagation of knowledge occur voluntarily. In fact, a library is something of a public educational enterprise without expensive tuition, which provides various kinds of educational programs for all ages and all classes and of administrative services (e.g., passport service). That is why a government should fund its public libraries to encourage and fortify communal integrations and progresses instead of grandstanding on its discordant political vitriols to manipulate the number of constituents.

People might deem the future of public libraries to be rather bleak because of the advent of electronic books and online libraries. Yet, as time has been changed, so have libraries with modern resources, catering to the needs and interests of today’s library users. Public libraries have become democratic forums of learning and exchanging knowledge and information. They are vibrant cultural atriums in which the abstract and the physical become wondrously and liberally consummated. For this reason, I think that the future of public libraries is reasonably auspicious.

Author’s Note: This is my thought on a new radio interview with Stuart Kells on the future of public libraries. The subject is universal beyond Australia. Readers are encouraged to listen to the interview and to visit their local libraries.

‘The Real Guy Fawkes’, by Nick Holland – review

The Real Guy FawkesThe Real Guy Fawkes by Nick Holland

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

It was a fateful day for a man, it was a fortuitous day for a crown. A man of imposing physique with a more imposing spiritual credo stood there speechless in the cellar of the House of Lords stocked with barrels of gunpowder that could blow up the parliament to the detritus of the past sovereign supremacy. The captors were in awe of the man’s imperturbability amid the silent trepidation of the weight of aborted stratagem. He was no less than a person than Guido “Guy” Fawkes himself, one of the eight Gunpowder conspirators, the man whose effigies are ceremoniously mocked and burned on 5th of every November throughout England as his eternal Promethean punishment for defiant treason since 1605.

Nick Holland’s The Real Guy Fawkes tells it all about who this unfortunate but formidable man of unshakable faith in his realistic discourse of the accused based on historical evidence gleaned from his exhaustive research superbly blended with his vivid storytelling narrative skills that resurrect the atmosphere and ethos of the era contributing to the making of Guy Fawkes. We see young Protestant Guy with a great linguistic talent, good looks, and full of life, playing a Nine Men’s Morris with his friends. We witness Guy’s conversion to Catholicism, his stint as a valorous soldier in the Spanish Army in Flanders, his involvement in the Gunpowder Plot as the right-hand man of Robert Catesby, the charismatic leader who wanted to bring his beloved England to the One, Holy, Apostolic Church, and his last moment on the scaffold. He was a passionate man of faith who keeps his words by actions, and the image of Guy Fawkes overlaps with that of Father Mendoza in the film “The Mission”, who tried to revolt against the tyrannical oppression of despotism suppressing a freedom of wills and faith incompatible with its claim of totalitarian supremacy over individualism.

Holland’s role of compassionate and open-minded narrator helps the reader to understand what motivated Guy Fawkes to involve in such an epochal plot and who the person of Guy Fawkes was. The infamy that chained Guy Fawkes in the unbroken shackles in the darkest dungeon of history becomes justifiably lessen, and the eternal mockery of his likeness becomes faded off as a collective echo of demotic populism orchestrated by the powers-that-be with systematic religious prejudice. Personally, I feel that the celebration of Guy Fawkes Day is akin to the eternal punishment of Prometheus, which should be lifted in order that his soul can rest in peace. If you feel the way I do, or if you understand what it meant to be a Catholic in the Reformation era and before the Second Vatican Council, then you will probably agree with me.

top of the world – music video

 

Leisure in nature finds good in everything with time to stand on the top of the hill and stare the world under with thrill. Nature indeed requires her times of preservation, so that it will be a free luxuriant spa for all who labor and heavy laden with the existential needs and those who are in the crossroads of spiritual quest for truth. For you will find books in the trees, sermons in streaming brooks, and music in every sound that the earth produces.

Chariot and two horses

6561-roman-charioteer-wit

The soul of man has his own chariot

With a driver and two winged horses:

The one eager for honorable praises;

The other intent on becoming corrupt

That only flogging and bawling can quell.

With the driver’s free rein on the mares,

The noble horse goes AWOL,

The ignoble heads dominance,

The chariot loses the control,

All falls from the fantastic race

To the perched land of ignorance,

Then begins the rebirth of the race

Again, and again for ever and ever.

Author’s Note: I remember reading about Plato’s Chariot Allegory that illustrates our journey to the end of enlightenment with its vividly dynamic images of the aerial chariot race too compelling to reserve for a silent appreciation in my mind’s reservoir. I wonder what my chariot race has been like thus far…

Sunday Dreamin’

When the Chariot of Apollo started racing at full speed thru the aerial hippodrome in the early morning, she decided to go out and watch the splendor of the golden racing that brightened up the earth after several Sundays’ absence of the spectacle.

So, she first sauntered at the park where K-9 school students were taking classes. Then she went to an arts and craft store to buy stuff to decorate her next year’s traveler’s notebooks in which she will write her reading notes and all sundry things. Thereafter, her ceremony of beautiful Sunday was served with delicious refreshments at a donut shop that she didn’t expect to find in the Wild West.

Apollo’s racing has long been finished with his twin sister Artemis taking over the celestial domain with stars and the Moon. She looks out the windows and realizes that this Sunday is fast approaching Monday tomorrow like a fashionable host. “Live a little, comfort a little, cheer thyself a little,” said the Bard. She thinks that life shouldn’t be complicated indeed.