Monday, November 21, 2011

Monday Musings, Monday, November 21, 2011

Last night, looking for something a little different to read, I downloaded a sample chapter from Fr. Robert Spitzer’s book on proofs of God from modern day physics to the old Kindle. Normally I avoid such books. My idea is that, the existence of God doesn’t depend on any proof or disproof we could offer, we’re finite beings, of very limited knowledge, and God is something we could never definitively prove. Our understanding of science changes quite rapidly, I hate to say progresses, and a “proof” offered one day based on our existing knowledge, risks being thrown out, taken to actually disprove God’s existence the next day, when in fact, as stated above, there is no such proof available to us. These are mostly mind games, to my mind (so to speak).

And yet, and yet. I realized there is value in such books. The value is in the fact that they show that there is little in “science” as we know it that disproves God’s existence, contrary to the claims made by atheistic so called scientists. They show, in fact, that what we are learning in the fields of physics and astronomy more points to the fact of God existing than not.

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Speaking of the old Kindle (K2 version), I’m now tempted greatly by the new Kindle Touch. From what I gather, it is a bit smaller and noticeably lighter than my current version, and has far better battery life and available memory, too. All at a fairly reasonable price.  Who knows, maybe Santa will read this.

A lady who works with me just received her Kindle Fire and I have reservations about it after a quick look. The screen is very nice, however, controls seem poorly thought out and it is also quite heavy, almost to the point I think it would be tiring to try to hold it while reading for any length of time. I’m leaning much more to the Touch version.

I find I’m buying more ebooks these days, for several reasons. First, the house is nearly full of books and space is becoming a concern; it’s nice to buy books and not have them take up a lot of room, or have to worry about where to put them. Also, it’s very convenient to be able to take a small but growing library with me wherever I go. If I’m stuck somewhere and have to spend time waiting, I can pull the trusty Kindle out of the bag and start reading. It’s very handy.

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I’ve started reading Mortimer Adler’s book, How to Read a Book. I thought it about time; with retirement possibly immanent, I will have time to read some fairly serious tomes and it would be nice to have some level of real understanding of them, maybe even learn something from them.   I tend to breeze through books without really taking them in, and that's not a good practice.  One thing that is puzzling me is that Adler, of course, recommends some serious level of note taking during reading. The thing that has me a bit stumped is that I’d like to have some truly systematic way of taking notes and keeping the organized so that they can be easily retrieved and reviewed (maybe even used in blog posts). I don’t think 3x5 cards are up to the task, not really, they are too small and too easily lost or misplaced. I’m thinking it may be a matter of just buying some loose leaf paper and a notebook and starting there, but I don’t find that a totally satisfying solution. Anyone have any good ideas?


Max Weismann said...

We are a not-for-profit educational organization, founded by Mortimer Adler and we have recently made an exciting discovery--three years after writing the wonderfully expanded third edition of How to Read a Book, Mortimer Adler and Charles Van Doren made a series of thirteen 14-minute videos--lively discussing the art of reading. The videos were produced by Encyclopaedia Britannica. For reasons unknown, sometime after their original publication, these videos were lost.

Three hours with Mortimer Adler and Charles Van Doren, lively discussing the art of reading, on one DVD. A must for libraries and classroom teaching the art of reading.

I cannot exaggerate how instructive these programs are--we are so sure that you will agree, if you are not completely satisfied, we will refund your donation.

Please go here to see a clip and learn more:

ISBN: 978-1-61535-311-8

Thank you,

Max Weismann

Ron said...


Thank you for the link, I'll check it out. Sounds great.