zenpundit.com » map

Archive for the ‘map’ Category

The religions: which is it to be – sibling rivalry or family feeling?

Monday, April 7th, 2014

[ by Charles Cameron -- two images from recent Religion Dispatches posts neatly pose the question ]
.

Sources:

  • Jeremy Stolow, Will Quebec Ban Religious Symbols in Public?
  • M Sophia Newman, Are Attacks on Hindus in Bangladesh Religiously Motivated?
  • **

    Québec officially doesn’t seem to like what it terms “conspicuous religious symbols” — including the pictured “large” crucifix, hijab, and dastar (upper panel above, top row, left to right) and niqab and kippa (bottom row, left to right).

    I suppose that’s one way to achieve uniformity — maybe peacocks should be asked to tone down their feathers until they’re more in line with pigeons, too — but it’s instructive to note that most of the folk in the Bangladeshi march for religious harmony (lower panel, above) would be banned from wearing their identifying symbols if they tried to hold a similar parade in Montréal, Québec.

    Lac Zut, alors!

    **

    In the tiny middle panel of my DoubleQuotes graphic, where you’ll usually find a pair of spectacles or binoculars, the Swayambunath Buddha, just outside Kathmandu, Nepal, looks on, bemused — having seen so much, so very much, of human nature.

    Share

    Flight 370: or the search for a landing strip

    Monday, March 17th, 2014

    [ by Charles Cameron -- whose own quest is for a long-enough strip of reliable mental silence to land an original thought on ]
    .

    Here is Foreign Policy‘s map of landing strips that Flight 370 might have used, offered with the caveat that as with a wiki, individuals may add or have akready have added spurious information or uninformed speculations at this point:

    You may of course prefer the greater density and spread of James Fallows‘ offering from The Atlantic — both are interactive, but Fallows’ version as formulated by Atlantic reader David Strip doesn’t allow you to add landing strips if your own devising, though “if you click on any of the individual dots on this map, you’ll see popup information about the site — runway length, location, elevation, etc.”

    Thankfully, someone at NASA was not satisfied by the “in the box” thinking for which Google is renowned, raised their scopes to the heavens and looked “outside the planet”:

    **

    Conclusion?

    In the memorable words of Alan Watts: Cloud-hidden, Whereabouts Unknown

    Share

    March 16th: Purim, or Israel vs Iran redux?

    Sunday, March 16th, 2014

    [ by Charles Cameron -- still trying to cover some of the major feasts and fasts of the world's religions in calendar time, which can open on occasion into timelessness -- Chag Purim Sameach! ]
    .

    Jan Lievens, The Feast of Esther, ca 1625

    From the North Carolina Museum of Art site:

    The subject of this painting comes from the Old Testament Book of Esther. Ahasuerus (Xerxes), king of the Persians, took Esther as his queen, not knowing she was a Jew. Haman, the king’s evil minister, plotted to annihilate the Jews by issuing a decree of execution in the king’s name. Esther invited both men to a banquet in order to reveal Haman’s plot to Ahasuerus and to plead for the life of her people. The king’s anger is seen in his clenched fists; soon, Haman would meet his fate on the gallows. Although this picture was long attributed to Rembrandt, its scale, bold colors, and dramatic energy have much in common with others painted by Lievens at a time when he may have shared a studio with Rembrandt in Leiden.

    **

    I don’t want to get itno too much detail on this one, since Purim caught up with me before I’d done the necessary research to write a properly up-to-date account of its “prophetic” significance in terms of contemporary geopolitics this year — but I would like to point us a couple of years back, to PM Netanyahu’s gift of an Esther scroll to Pres. Obama:

    **

    I’ve chosen to illustrate that gift of an Esther scroll via blog headlines, then and now, from the site of Joel Rosenberg, popular Christian novelist and apocalyptic influencer of politicians, who clearly finds “signs of the times” in WaPo and NYT — essentially reading with “news / scripture” bi-focals.

    This kind of religious enthusiasm and double-reading is also present in the controversial Gen. Boykin. Accordding to a DOD report of August 5, 2004 titled Alleged Improprieties Related To Public Speaking: Lieutenant General William G. Boykin, U.S. Army Deputy Under Secretary of Defense for Intelligence“, GEN Boykin gave repeated speeches in which he claimed:

    After telling the story of Esther — a biblical figure who, according to LTG Boykin, became queen of Persia and was told she had been “raised up for for such a time as this” to save her people (the Jews in Persia), LTG Boykin analogized the story to the election of President Bush who, he said, had been placed in the presidency by God. “for such a time as this” (referring to the war on terrorism).

    **

    The geopolitical influence of rival eschatologies, then, can be found in Netanyahu, Boykin, Rosenberg, and (plausibly at least) also in Khamenei… and is well illustrated in the books of the “Two Joels”:

    **

    Here’s the rub, though.

    When you view the world through apoc-specs, and then influence the policies of Powers, Principalities, Thrones and Dominions (words which have, interestingly enough, their own bi-focal meanings, temporal / terrestrial and celestial / demonic), and the world changes in unexpected ways — Ahmadinejad, with his imminent Mahdist expectation, is replaced by the far more suave and less apocalyptically aroused Hassan Rouhani — it takes some deft footwork to avoid being caught wirthout a chair when the music stops…

    As I observed in the mid-1990s:

    Bernard McGinn makes a shrewd comment on Luther’s process, in his article on Revelation in Robert Alter and Frank Kermode’s Literary Guide to the Bible:

    Earlier interpreters, such as Joachim (but not Augustine), had also claimed to find a consonance between Revelation’s prophecies and the events of Church history, but they had begun with Scripture and used it as a key to unlock history. Paradoxically, Luther, the great champion of the biblical word, claimed that history enabled him to make sense of Revelation…

    So: which direction should theologians “read” the analogy between Revelation and history in?
    Should they, like Luther, start with history and try to “shoe-horn” the Book of Revelation to fit it, or vice versa? There are two very different processes here, and the results may be correspondingly different — but when people today read accounts of Revelation which propose that the “end times” are nigh, they seldom even ask the question: which came first in the interpreter’s mind?

    **

    Without even getting into the rival eschatologies of Jewish Messianism and Islamic Mahdism, Christian eschatological interpretations themselves are a vastly obscure and complex matter — essentially a sort of verbal Rorshach blot onto which different people in different centuries and on different continents all find it only too easy to project their own circumstances and political beliefs…

    Ezekiel, for instance, is famously hard to understand:

    Is he writing about semi-mathematical angels or flying saucers?

    And what does that map — taken from one of many, many, in Clarence Larkin‘s Dispensational Truth (1918, revised 1920, mine is the 29th printing) — really mean, not in 1918 at the end of World War I, but today, almost a century later?

    I confess I have a fondness for Ezekiel. One of his visions, via the gospel song Dem Bones, gave me the name under which I developed my HipBone Games… and of course his interest as an eschatological visionary helped, too…

    **

    DoubleQuote sources:

  • Joel Rosenberg, From Ancient Persia to to Hitler’s Germany
  • Joel Rosenberg, Netanyahu gives Obama Esther Scroll
  • Share

    Cheryl on Ukraine, March 1 2014

    Saturday, March 1st, 2014

    [ posted by Charles Cameron -- essentially a guest-post swiped from Cheryl Rofer ]
    .

    .

    Map credit: U Texas Perry-Casteñeda Library Map Collection

    **

    Here is blog-friend Cheryl Rofer‘s latest update on Ukraine, for your reading interest:

    I’ve been selecting some of the better articles to read on the situation in Ukraine and writing a bit about how I understand things. That’s been at Nuclear Diner – too much happening this week to cross-post. Here are those posts and some additional reading.

    Yanukovych out, officials flee to Russia

    Ukraine update – 24 February

    Ukraine update – 26 February

    Ukraine update – 28 February

    Plus some background I’ve written:

    Ukraine historical background with maps

    Russia as winner – not so much actually, with more damage likely.

    Leadership without leaders

    And we post political cartoons every Sunday morning. Articles from others:

    Explainer: The Budapest Memorandum And Its Relevance To Crimea

    The Russian Duma has approved the use of military force in Ukraine. Here’s the resolution.

    Some basics of Crimean history.

    A wide-ranging commentary on Russia’s thinking from Strobe Talbott, who was a special advisor to the US State Department dealing with the former Soviet space after the breakup of the Soviet Union.

    Timothy Snyder’s articles are very worth reading. The part of the world between Germany and Russia is poorly understood by many Western commentators. You really need to spend some time on it, even live there for a bit, to understand the contradictions to some of our common wisdom.

    Fascism, Russia, and Ukraine

    Ukraine: The Haze of Propaganda

    **

    Sources:

  • Phronesisaical: Bits and Pieces – Ukraine Edition, 1 March 2014
  • U Texas Perry-Casteñeda Library, map of Ukraine
  • Share

    Unequal equations

    Friday, January 18th, 2013

    [ by Charles Cameron -- math, modeling and mapping, in that strange zone where beauty meets understanding ]
    .

    The upper equation — Euler‘s — gets as tight and definitional as one can get, yet is profound in the way the greatest haiku are… while the metaphorical “equation” mentioned in the lower panel is a very rough model indeed of the intricate and constantly shifting forces at work in and on Pakistan.

    **

    I’m interested in mapping these sorts of influences at a level of detail that the human mind can assimilate and comprehend — and the graphical news-map in the video below will give you an idea of what one approach to such a mapping would look like.

    This particular example is drawn from a mapping of web-based news items related to President Obama over the course of 2009, but it should give you some idea of the constant flux of tensions and motion of “nodes” involved in tracking political issues, at home or abroad — the beginning is a bit slow, but from about the 23 second mark on is just amazing:

    Now is that art, or technology — or a beginning of something fascinating that by its very nature melds both?

    **

    Sources:

  • FB Ali, Interesting times in Pakistan on Sic Semper Tyrannis
  • Recorded Future Index video

  • Share

    Switch to our mobile site