Having just finished the fourth chapter in The Roots of American Order, I want to place some thoughts from this section. I have been easily detained in other areas of my life and have prolonged my reading time.
Delay put aside, I think I'm beginning to feel something or rather just beginning to see a small idea of the picture Russell Kirk is trying to prepare for me, the reader. I have been taken from the laws confirmed by God via Moses, through the order of the House of Israel. Into the Greek history of their weaker political city-states yet strong cultural society. From great men like Solon who was first a poet turned statesmen, revered as one of the Seven Sages said that the commonwealth of Athens would only endure through righteous order.
About the time when the Jews are returning to Jerusalem from Babylon (I think lead by Ezra which I read in the Bible Dictionary this morning), the Roman society is taking shape. Key to each of these three societies is natural law, virtue, and personal order which will affect the commonwealth order. The good , the bad, and the ugly is part of Roman society. Good like Cicero and Virgil and leader Marcus Aurelius. Bad like his sonCommodus who was strangled by the instigation of the Emperor's intimate "friends". To the ugliness of too many emperors to name.
It's amazing how long this empire lasted. America is just beginning yet suffering from the same problems as the Roman citizens and government. Lack of integrity, honesty, charity, increased selfishness and overall disconnection of oneself from God.
There are three words that interest me. Labor, Pietas, Fatum. Key words of Virgil.
I think that both my society and the Roman society started with the dignity of labor in particular of agriculture occupations even if it was just that which a family did to maintain their lives and provide a little extra income. Productive work helps a person to feel happy and valuable. And prevents BOREDOM. I think boredom lends a person time to go astray in life.
What acts today are called "anti-American" as compared to one hundred years ago? Pietas is a love for one's country that you would willingly give your life for family, property, liberty and the pursuit of happiness that others may maintain these privileges.
The 28th principle of our Founding Father's in Skousen's The 5,000 Year Leap is that "The United States has a manifest destiny to be an example and a blessing to the entire human race." Rome felt the same. They had a mission to fulfill. but over time and with the moral decay of man and emperor Rome lost sight and no longer believed. Just into the 5th century the Eternal City is conquered. Fatum was lost. I wonder if this is happening in my time in my own country. Who within the world of politics and government schooling believes that America was created because of manifest destiny? How many Americans believe they have a purpose or a mission on earth to serve?
The Roman Empire influenced law and order throughout Europe. Our ancestors came from the places once under Roman rule. It is only natural that America would have this affect to some extend in the creation of it's Constitution and organization of the government. How much I don't know. Maybe I'll learn it by the time my class is over.
Wednesday, August 27, 2008
Having just finished the fourth chapter in The Roots of American Order, I want to place some thoughts from this section. I have been easily detained in other areas of my life and have prolonged my reading time.
Sunday, August 24, 2008
My first child turned eleven today. It being Sunday and all, we are giving Eli his fun day tomorrow. Breakfast cake, Bean Museum, Natural Science Museum and lastly bowling at BYU. It sounds like a fun day with my children. I'm looking forward to playing with them.
A great present we all learned this evening via the Family Search Website is that our children and Gove are direct descendants of Alfred "The Great" king of the southern Anglo-Saxon. I guess by the time you get to 800 AD and earlier your chances of being related to kings and queens increases. But my goodness I hope this doesn't go to a certain persons head because he has kings flashing all over the pages, including some Catherine lady, princess of a Roman family or other.
It's called True Light Academy.
I actually participated for the first 8 months of 2005.
I let it fall to the way side and forgot until last week when I was at Donna's blog site. (Katrina excuse)
If you would like to develop a personal learning program that is broken down over 12 months and truly doable for many moms. If I was not preparing for this GWU class I would start again. Last time I wasn't ready. It's wonderful to feel ready even if I have a long way to go. A Mother's Educational Course for Latter-day Saints
I'm going to teach myself or seek a mentor in learning Latin, Hebrew and later Greek. Now this is going to most likely take the rest of my earthly life but isn't it wonderful to know that learning doesn't end here.
Did you know there are 144 references to learning in the central cannon of my faith? Here are a few that I really like.
"Seek learning, even by study and also by faith." (D&C88:118)
"Study and learn, and become acquainted with all good books, and with languages, tongues, and people. (D&C90:15)
This morning while thinking about my lack of putting my own words to what I had read over the past week, I was blessed to remember the need to pray and ask for a spiritual gift that specifically will help in this area. The article says this same thing.
Key to learning: Organize your thoughts. I don't do this. If I'm going to make this learning my very own I need to write it down and expand upon it for me. Then I need to find someone who will listen and let me share what I learned.
Key Point: "...until you can articulate what you've learned, you haven't really learned it."
BINGO, this is my big time stumbling block.
"Above all, stay with it", says the author. "Don't give up. Be persistent in learning. Make the most of the many opportunities you have to learn."
He, the author then relates the story about a women who sat on a brick peeling potatoes for 15 years and lamented she could not learn. A nice man encourages her and her life changes during this self study. It turns out the man was Louis Agassiz. Who I've read a little about in Brave Companions by David McCollough. Now I know more, not the rest of the story but enough to appreciate this womens struggle for self education.
I, Nickie Allen, want to become a better learner and in turn a better teacher. I too want to follwo the exmple of the greatest teacher who was first the greatest learner. Jesus...
This Ensign article had a foot note for the July 1971 Ensign. I went to this article and found where Marion D. Hanks said,
And what do I have to show for all of this?
Nothing really. It was all very interesting while I was reading but can I articulate in the English language or another language what it meant to me? NO!! I am up against a 10 foot brick wall when it comes to trying to say what I learned. Did I even learn? I thought I was. But try to tell someone else and my mouth is shut up with inability.
Do you see what is missing in this group of readings? Although I turned to the book of Proverbs while reading the Winthrop paper and found Chapter 31 verses 10-31 more rewarding then ever in my life before. It was my only scripture study this past week. Granted I went to the temple Tuesday morning which I count as spiritual study. I have fallen in my spiritual learning which I think has in turn affected my secular studies.
I allow myself to stumble off my personal schedule often for no reason and often when extended family come to visit(third set of family here now). While at church this morning, the personal epiphany light came on and I beheld what I'm doing wrong.
If I am desirous for secular learning; I'm talking about Liberal Arts education here. I need spiritual feeding for my spiritual well first. Now I already know this! Knowing and doing are two different choices.
The sense of great expectations that I felt two weeks ago is all but extinguished. Not lost mind you. I know it can be gained again after I make amends with my God for the neglect I chose to exercise at my own expense.
Here are a few points mentioned during Sacrament Meeting in regards to the influence of the Spirit or the lack of spiritual guidance which spoke to my personal situation:
2.Your mind is clear. Your mind is muddled.
3.Your bosom burns with love for the Lord and for others. You feel empty, hollow, cold inside.
4.You feel confident with what you do. You become discouraged easily.
5.You feel like praying and reading the scriptures. You don't want to pray or read scriptures.
I could go on with this list. I think you get the picture. Neglect of my spiritual being leads me quickly to my own level of despair.
Somewhere in the Anne of Green Gables series, Mirilla Cuthbert says something to the effect that there's always tomorrow coming clean and fresh.
I'm looking forward to tomorrow morning...
Monday, August 18, 2008
Shhh, I'm at the library. Don't tell anyone. Gove is home with his sisters visiting and I am developing my skills for learning.
I have longed for a day or two each week for library study time, which seems nice, yet already I miss hearing my family around me. I'm sure I can adjust though truth be known I don't imagine I'll have many opportunities like this.
I have wanted to return to Figures of Speech by Arthur Quinn. I have just started when I became side tracked. I am reminded by my friend Jenny that I would actually be further ahead if I dedicated 30 minutes x days per week then trying to wait for an open slot to add it to now and then. So far, I learned that a asyndeton (omission of expected conjunction like "and") was popular with Shakespeare. Whereas the polysyndeton (many conjunction) is used quite a bit in the Bible, maybe to prolong expectations I imagine. Hendiadys are polysyndetons that use "and" to separate one meaning into two or three meanings. Such as, "For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for eve. Amen"
How interesting. I did not even know these words for speech existed. Sometimes I wonder what I learned in high school. When I hear of the books and grammar that my husband learned, I wonder where I was. Is it possible that rural farm communities just wanted to teach the basics so farms kids could get back to work? I don't think that is likely, I just wonder if it's feasible.
Saturday, August 16, 2008
I continue to prepare for my first college coarse in 13 years. We were assigned to read Genesis, Exodus, Deuteronomy, a couple chapter of 1Samule and 2Kings, as well as an address by Governor John Winthrop called A Model of Christian Charity.
I now have 111 people who have accepted the invitation for the forth coming homeschool picnic.
Wednesday, August 13, 2008
Yes! We passed the state inspection this afternoon. It's now official; we can start selling bread. The sad note is that I can't sell hummus. Without hummus I don't think my flax-seed crackers are going to sell. Oh well. We'll be knee deep in dough so maybe it's better this way.
The whole process from food handlers permit to creating the labels and sending in the forms, to having the inspection is really quite easy. The hardest was creating labels according to the specifications.
Bread for sale, hot bread for sale...
Tuesday, August 12, 2008
And so I felt inclined to host another picnic. This is for the homeschool community of Utah county. We have reserved South Fork park. We're providing the hot dogs and drinks, sport equipment and six glorious acres of canyon beauty, with a stream and wild life. It sounds wonderful to me. And already I have families accepting the invitation.
I have been happy all day. I laugh at myself to be willing and confident to take this one. How interesting that this church calling is giving/blessing me with the ability to give to our community now. Wow! This is me doing this...our potential is so much more then we or then I have ever realized.
Monday, August 11, 2008
That's right. We, ( I and my children) are inviting everyone who homeschools, and lives in Utah county to come and play with other children, meet other parents, and have a good time.
When: Friday, September 5th 2008
Place: South Fork Park (Provo Canyon, turn right at Vivian Park, follow the road up through this small canyon for about 2 miles)
Plan: We will provide a covered pavilion, lemonade and water to drink.
Toys: We will provide a large parachute with balls, and a volleyball net if there is interest.
Nature: She will provide lovely mountains, potential wildlife, a stream (which is fun to splash in for all kids and adults), 6 acres of lawn, bathrooms, running water, BBQ grill, paths for hiking, and lots of shade.
Food: We'll provide the hot dogs and buns, you bring a large side dish to share with everyone.
RSVP: I would like an idea of how many to plan for. Please RSVP to me
I don't know more then a handful of fellow homeschoolers here in the valley. Yet, a strong impression has come to me that I should do this for my community. I have reserved the smaller of the two pavilions for this day. I hope you will join us.
Sunday, August 10, 2008
Saturday, August 9, 2008
I was actually reading the Wall Street Journal that was left in our driveway yesterday and this morning. Twice I have come across Alexander Solzhenitsyn. I was so surprised to see a name and read the article in Fridays paper. It sounded a little post tense but I didn't catch it until this afternoon while going through today's paper.
I'm sorry he died. Yet I'm happy to read something in the W.S.J. that I know a little about. I did read Solzhenitsyn's Harvard address from the 70's last December for one of our colloquiums. I though he was right about the gangs, drugs, and music.
I don't know what my point is. It's just neat to be learning and then to understand what the WSJ is talking about.
Thanks for the free papers. Keep it coming, if you don't mind.
Friday, August 8, 2008
I learned this word while reading in the 3rd chapter for Roots of American Order. Somewhere around the end of the 6thBC, there lived a man who understood the proper role of order in his personal life and in the political life of a city-state. His name is Solon. He is an example of statesmanship to me. He sounds like a good guy too.
I did not know at this time in Greek history, a person could give their body as payment for their personal debts. It sounds like the Athenians and many other Greeks were living a spendthrift life style. There is a group of paintings called The Rake's Progress. It's the opposite of Pilgrim's Progress yet it depicts the live style of the time. I would guess the use of false gods and denial of one true god, the god of Israel would have something to do with the moral downfall.
Anyway, the people called for this Solon to make changes single handedly to improve the society as a whole. And he did. What's neat about the whole thing is that he never let this power turn him into a tyrant. He created a "mixed' government. he said," The ship of state, riding upon two anchors, will pitch less in the surf and make the people less turbulent".
Most of what we know of Solon comes from Plutarch and Herodotus. Solon was called one of the Seven Sages of the ancient world. Plato said that had Solon stayed away from politics and stuck with poems he would have equaled or excelled Homer.
Would you believe there were citizens angry that Solon did not take money and increase his power? Ultimately, Solon decided to leave for about 10 years and see how the constitution held up. Within a few years there was a tyrant born.
Here is a few lines from Solon's poetry. I don't think it's called poetry but it's good all the same.
When the gods would give him fortune, he of his own will declined;
When the new was full of fishes, over-heavy thinking it,
He declined to haul it up, through want of heart and want of wit.
Had I but that chance of riches and of kingship, for one day,
I would give my skin for flaying, and my house to die away.
It was exciting for me to read this today as I plough headon into this novel of American order. I feel like Pip! I see new and great expectations for me in my mission is this half of my life. How exciting. Wonderful. Glorious and Fulfilling. All at the same time. Leadership education is the way to go through life. I hope to inspire my kids to take hold. I fear because of my weaknesses. God be with us all. Good night.
As you know, leadership education is not new, but with the onset of the industrial revolution in America and, subsequently, the public school being removed from local governance, most of the principles of this educational philosophy were lost to modern education.
However, leadership education is making a comeback, and the man most responsible for this resurgence is
Dr. Oliver DeMille, author of A THOMAS JEFFERSON EDUCATION and president of George Wythe College.
Please recognize we are among the beneficiaries of his life’s work as Dr. DeMille has worked tirelessly and sacrificed much on our behalf—including time with his family and even his health.
By now you probably have heard that he is very ill and has cancelled his speaking engagements for an indefinite period. Rachel, his wife, wrote in her statement that he was taking a six-month leave, but sources at the college have suggested it will be longer.
Actually, Oliver has been ill for some time, but has continued to travel extensively on behalf of the college and in a show of support for all of us who are trying to implement leadership education in our homes.
For example, he came to Rancho Cucamonga three times this year—in January, again in April, and lastly this past weekend—for which he received no remuneration. (This is a man who commands thousands of dollars in speaker’s fees from Fortune 500 companies.)
Dr. DeMille’s temporary absence is a rich opportunity for personal growth for each of us who has already discovered TJEd. Here is a perfect opportunity to increase individually in statesmanship and leadership, and there is much each of us can do to encourage others to strive toward becoming liber.
Now is the time to step up if you have been feeling that you should do something—heal or strengthen the family culture in your own home, start reading, start keeping a journal, establish a colloquia group, teach a class of young scholars, take a class yourself, fall in love with learning, become politically active, etc.
I am confident that Oliver will recover, but I also recognize the seriousness of his condition as my own mother died less than two years ago of adrenal failure—although she was old and had completed her mission. Therefore, acknowledging that one of the pillars of TJEd is God, I add my voice to those of other friends of the DeMille family who are petitioning that God’s grace will attend him.
It is my understanding that most, if not all, of the major religions of the world have as one of their tenets the principle of fasting, which is the voluntary abstinence from food for the purpose of developing or renewing spiritual strength.
For those of you for whom this is a part of your faith, I echo the invitation made by friends of the DeMille famly and invite you to participate in a day of fasting and prayer on behalf of our mentor, Dr. Oliver DeMille, on Sunday, August 10.
Tuesday, August 5, 2008
Today I finished reading the August Ensign. In this months magazine, there is an article about dressing modestly for both females as well as males. I finished this article while waiting at Provo High School while the girls took swim lessons. Out comes the PHS football team with no shirts on, many with shorts hanging from their hip bones. Do these boys consider modesty at all? But worse then the lack of clothing was the use of filthy language. I was completly disgusted. Such language left these boys looking crude and weak.
Monday, August 4, 2008
At this point in my reading of the above book, I am learning that the order of America actually starts long ago with the influence of Jerusalem, Rome, Athens, and London. So far, the author is taking me back to the historical influence of Moses and the Israelites. I am reminded of the first principle of 5,000 Year Leap. Natural Law.
I love order in my life. I have spent years not doing great things like reading because I was always trying to create order. That was a waste of my time. I did not use order to my advantage. Nor did I let go of controlling more then was necessary at that time. I'm glad to be improving.
One key to order is less stuff. Why just this afternoon I and the kids cleaned the basement. Cleaned is an understatement. It took 4 hours. I shoveled and they prepared to sell many toys this weekend in a yard sale Beth has been dieing to have. The result is a lot less junkie toys. And a clean basement.
The other result is peace. Dinner is in the pressure cooker. And here I am calm and relaxed after establishing order.
Saturday, August 2, 2008
A Free people Will Not Survive Unless They Stay Strong.
'Peace, Commerce, and Honest friendship with All Nations-Entangling Alliances with None."
George Washington warned that giving favored status to particular nations could open the U.S. to strong foreign influence which could subvert the security or best interest of America. He goes on to say that experience has proved that foreign influence is one of the most baneful foes of republican government.
There was a time in our great history while Americans still felt strongly for "Manifest destiny". These American people felt the responsibility of serving as the vanguard for the moral and political emancipation of all mankind. Let us not forget that slavery was supposed to end in 1808 I think it was, but other issues came in the way again.
Congressman Charles Lindbergh Sr., the father of the first Atlantic flight aviator gives serious warning of the mistake America took getting caught up in "Internationalism". he was speaking of WWI. Get the book and read it. Also, read the comments of then Under-Secretary of State, J. Reuben Clark Jr. It's appalling to think there are and have been citizens who desire war and want our country involved in the crises of other nations.
The Core Unit Which Determines the Strength of Any Society is the Family; Therefore, the Government Should Foster and Protect It's Integrity.
Single parent families have triples since 1960. The rate of people getting married since 1960- 1991 has lowered by 25 percent. In 1991 there were 21 divorces for every 1,000 married women. From 1960 to 1992 crimes increased more then 300 percent.
Suicide is the second leading cause of death among teenagers.
While expenditures on elementary and secondary education have increased 200+ percent since 1960, the SAT scores have declined 73 points.
Sure the experts can give all kinds of hot air advice. The answers lay in the falling apart of family unit. Poor examples of both the parents, or more likely no example at all. The lack of faith in god. Time lost in front t of the television. We all have ideas of the causes. What are you going to do to improve your family relations?
The Burden of Debt is as Destructive to Freedom as Subjugation by Conquest.
In Vanity Fair, Thackeray wrote,"How well thoses live who are comfortably and thoroughly in debt: how they deny themselves nothing; how jolly and easy they are in their minds."
According to this company, the average household credit card debt is $8,000+.
Since the era of the Great Depression, all three branches of federal government use the climate of emergency to overstep their Constitutional authority. Spend, spend spend. The Founders' did not want debt to carry over to the next generation. In 1835 the debt was decreased to $33,733. In 1865 the national debt was $1,297,555,000.00. By 1885 the debt was decreased to $260,227,000.00
Do you regard thrift as a mental disorder or a virtue?
The United States Has a Manifest Destiney to be an Example and a Blessing to the Entire Human Race.
Ideas for self-improvement:
· You are your most valuable asset. Personal development is your springboard to excellence and high achievement. You need continuous growth. Do not stop growing. Do not stagnate. Work at least as hard on yourself as you do on your job.
· Become curious, interested, open, adjustable, flexible and teachable.
· If you want to be successful, study success. Become an expert. Learn proven success methods from others so that you will not have to reinvent the wheel. Attend courses and seminars given by ... others who have already achieved success.
· Associate with successful people. Learn from them. Winners encourage you to win; losers encourage you to lose.
· Increase your productivity. Do you think you could increase your productivity by as little as 2% a month? Of course you can. If you do you will experience 100% improvement in three years!”
Ned Grossman, How to Succeed in Life.
THE END FOR NOW...
Friday, August 1, 2008
The models were made recently by following da Vinci's plans and drawings.
The whole display was quite amazing. To think outside the box and to create something from the unknown is incredible.
Most objects are scaled down. And many are quite dangerous. However there are a few objects that can be tested and handled.
Go check it out. It's worth the money and your time. Take your husband too.
We were an hour early. Went back to sleep, if you can call that sleep. Awoke the children at 4:00am just as the eclipse began. They were excited at 4:00AM! How fun to be so young. I love it when I feel young of body and heart.
So, here we are watching, it's almost a total eclipse when the clouds come in! We wait 15 minutes and I get up to turn off the computer when as I touch the screen there is a flash of light and the clouds pass.
Yea!!! We watched as the energy from the sun burst out around the moon. The kids thought it was great. Boy, I'm glad we did this for them.
Next solar eclipse in Utah is 2012.
Only Limited and Carefully defined Powers should be Delegated to Government, All Others Being Retained in the People.
It sure seems like the federal government has over stepped their power. Well, I know they have, I just can't tell you exactly where. It's probably all around me. Remember, the key was Limited Government.
Here's where we come to the 17th Amendment! I just think of Orrin Hatch and his career as a Senator! The states had more protecting when they picked who would represent a given state. If that Senator failed he or she was removed. I guess it was just he's back then. In 1913 this protection was eliminated with the passing of this amendment. This is the point when I felt so strongly that I can make a change some how.
Efficiency and Dispatch Require Government to Operate According to the Will of the Majority, But Constitutional Provisions Must be Made to Protect the Rights of the Minority.
(Inscription on the Statue of Liberty)
Strong Local Self-government is the Keystone to Preserving Human Freedom.
Thoams Jefferson said that if future generations (that's us) would perpetuate the Constitutional patter, then the federal government would remain small, cohesive and an inexpensive operation. Imagine that; inexpenssive.
A Free People Should be Governed by Law and Not by the Whims of Men.
A Free Society Cannot Survive as a Republic Without a Broad Program of General Education.
Many of our Founder's had limited educations. Here are three amazing stories of limited education and how these men became great. Farragut, Wahington, and Franklin .
These early generation still believed, as I do, in "manifest destiny". I know there are many people who believe thusly. There are many others who are going to believe as they begin their own ledership educations.