Friday, January 22, 2016

Random Thoughts

A real bully only understands one thing:  a well placed punch that delivers up a broken nose and a black eye.  Should the broken nose bleed and stain his shirt, all the better.  Belligerent countries are the same.  Appeasing a bully is wrong.  On Tuesday you give him your lunch money; you falsely think that the bully will leave you alone.  The next week he takes your lunch money for the whole week.  What is next, your pants or your shoes?  Given the choice, the bully will take both.  If allowed to continue, you will stand naked for the world to see.  

The First Amendment of the American Constitution is precious; among other things, it allows you to speak your mind.  However, the political correctness crowd wants to muzzle your mouth so you do not "hurt someone's feelings with your words."  Screw that.   Now, we have 18, 19, and 20 year-olds on college campuses who are demanding a "safe zone from hate speech."  Then we have other 18. 19, and 20 year-olds who, before going into combat, are required to write out their last will and testament.  These folks who demand a safe zone, free from words that can hurt them need to grow up.  They need to know beyond a shadow of a doubt that they Do Not have the right to Not Be Offended. All Hail the First Amendment.  And, in its own way, political correctness is a bully and needs to be pulled back, way back.  Maybe that can be started by putting those who want a safe zone into the military for a few years (or, remove them from mommy's teats and let them work somewhere for minimum wage for a few years).  Yes, I know - I am such a harsh and unrealistic bastard.  

                                               Copyright @2016 Terry Unger 



Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Book Review !!!

It's always nice when someone really likes your work !

The View:  One Man's Living Asatru With Help From The Havamal and ..... The View:  Act II  by Terry Unger.  Available on Amazon and other fine booksellers.  
Reviewed by Karen M.P. Carlson 

Terry Unger has written a pair of books that pull together some common-sense essays on the good life and a modern take on the Havamal in a format that is entertaining and thought provoking.  

There are a number of modern English translations of the Havamal, two of the most respected being those of Hollander and Bellows.  Terry has worked through these two translations and come up with a modern rendition - not a new translation, but an updating for the 21st century.  A great many of the verses are basically just restatements in clear modern prose.  Others keep the spirit but not the specifics of the medieval verse - for example, instead of  enjoining us not to worry about how good a horse we ride, this version tells us to not be hung up on having an expensive automobile.  

Terry's rendering of the Havamal is presented in its entirety at the back of each book (there may be minor updates in Act II).  The bulk of each book consists of a collection of short sections, each of which has (1) an essay from the author's blog, (2) one or more verses of the Havamal that are relevant to the essay, and (3) one or more questions for the reader.  These are not polished essays, but are highly readable.  Terry has a flare for entertaining while making a moral point, and he talks directly to you, the reader, as though he were your neighbor or perhaps an older member of your family.  

Many sections would be meaningful to a person of any religion; they deal with the sort of everyday moral and getting - along - in - the - world situations that, well, the Havamal addressed.  Act II includes a good deal of material on how society has changed in recent decades, often for the worse.  It pokes at political correctness, deterioration of meaningful human relationships, and the growing materialistic monoculture of today.  Is this just an older person's sour complaint about the youth today?  (OK - admission here; the author and I are both in the pre-geezer stage of life and remember back quite a few decades).  Or, are there trends today we should really be concerned about... and what can we do about them?  Some sections in both volumes are more for the Asatru audience; some of the questions invite you to consider an issue from the heathen perspective.  

The questions are personal, and most have no "right" answer.  For some of them I found my answer disagreed with Terry's implied position... and that felt OK.  The questions run along the lines of "What do you think about...?" or "Have you run into something like this in your life?"  some  of them actually made me a bit uncomfortable, as they prompted reflection on how well I have lived up to my ideals.  All were worth thinking about.  And space is provided for the reader's responses and notes, which I found really did encourage me to write down an answer, not just to jump ahead to the next section.  I enjoyed reading these thought provoking guides for reflecting on today's life.  

Reprinted with permission from Karen M.P. Carlson.

                              Copyright @2016 Karen M.P. Carlson and Terry Unger



Thursday, January 14, 2016

One More Snippet From ... The View - Act II

In the upside down world we live in, kids and adults are constantly rewarded, regardless of, or really the lack thereof of personal, positive words and deeds.  Today, every kid gets a trophy just for showing up (because we don't want to hurt their feelings).   Kids are pushed through and graduate high school with incredibly poor math and English skills (because we don't want to damage their self-esteem).  The latter has forced colleges and universities to carry remedial math and English courses in an effort to bring their new "students" up to speed.  Then we have all of the B/S in the workplace.  Nowadays, this list of reward for poor behavior seems endless.  

Havamal verse 16 - The lazy man thinks that if he runs away from things that require courage he just may live forever.  But death takes every man, even the lazy.  

Question - Explain the phrase, you are your words and deeds.  

From the essay, The Problem with Krampus, pages 114 and 115, in The One, The Only ... The View - Act II.  This book can be found on Amazon and other fine book sellers.  

                                               Copyright @2015/2016 Terry Unger


Tuesday, January 12, 2016

Another Snippet From ... The View - Act II

Can anyone please tell me why people need to be so 'connected'?  Why must people check their e-mails and text messages every other minute?  What the hell is so important on the Internet that it cannot wait until tomorrow?  Do people realize that fine dining does not include a damned phone ringing every five minutes?  It appears to me that people spend so much time being 'connected,' that we miss out on real people to people, person to person contact.  

Havamal verse 52 - Sometimes the simplest things are enjoyed the most.  A cup of coffee and good conversation can be the beginning of a lasting friendship.  

Question - When a person asks you to join them at a restaurant or pub what are the parameters of hospitality?  Are they different than a private residence?  

From the essay, A Relic, pages 42 and 43, in The One, The Only... The View - Act II.  This book can be found on Amazon and other fine book sellers.  

                                                 Copyright @ 2015/2016 Terry Unger  

Sunday, January 10, 2016

A Snippet From ... The View - Act II

All of us need to understand that if we break the law in any manner, we will have to pay the price, in one way or another.  If you do something really stupid, like sending naked pictures of yourself to a person you are trying to coerce for sex, sooner or later you will be on the evening news.  In today's fast paced informational age, you should not expect less ..... And if you are married with  kids, how do you explain it?  You cannot, unless you are talking to a couple of bags of dirt, which is what you thought about your family when you initially posted the pix .....

Havamal verse 29 - A man with an unbridled tongue pushes folks away from him and in return gains nothing but their ill-will.  

Question - Do you believe that in today's world virtue, honor, ethics, and morality are dead?  If so, how would you bring them back?  

From the essay, When We Betray and Deceive, pages 52, 53, and 54 found in The One, The Only ... The View - Act II.   Available on Amazon and other fine booksellers.  

                                          Copyright @2015/2016 Terry Unger

Friday, January 1, 2016

Happy New Year !

Yule is over and a new year has begun.  To All I Wish A HAPPY AND PROSPEROUS NEW YEAR!  What ever the load is that you carry, what ever it is that is troubling you, as long as you are breathing, you can master it.  Never quit; never surrender.  Keep pushing forward and do not listen to the nay-sayers.  They're just jealous!  

                                                       Copyright @2016 Terry Unger

Unity of a Forgotten Kind

The world and all it contains, both seen and unseen stands with mankind in a state of consubstantiation.  Our ancestors understood this as...