Saturday, March 14, 2020

Origins of the à in Spanish

Origins of the Ñ in Spanish The Spanish letter à ± is original with Spanish and has become one of its most distinctive written features. Where Did the Ñ Come From? As you could probably guess, the à ± came originally from the letter n. The à ± did not exist in the Latin alphabet and was the result of innovations about nine centuries ago. Beginning in about the 12th century, Spanish scribes (whose job it was to copy documents by hand) used the tilde placed over letters to indicate that a letter was doubled (so that, for example, nn became à ± and aa became ). How Is the Ñ Used Today? The popularity of the tilde for other letters eventually waned, and by the 14th century, the à ± was the only place it was used. Its origins can be seen in a word such as aà ±o (which means year), as it comes from the Latin word annus with a double n. As the phonetic nature of Spanish became solidified, the à ± came to be used for its sound, not just for words with an nn. A number of Spanish words, such as seà ±al and campaà ±a, that are English cognates use the à ± where English uses gn, such as in signal and campaign, respectively. The Spanish à ± has been copied by two other languages that are spoken by minorities in Spain. It is used in Euskara, the Basque language that is unrelated to Spanish, to represent approximately the same sound as it has in Spanish. It is also used in Galician, a language similar to Portuguese. (Portuguese uses nh to represent the same sound.) Additionally, three centuries of Spanish colonial rule in the Philippines led to the adoption of many Spanish words in the national language, Tagalog (also known as Pilipino or Filipino). The à ± is among the letters that have been added to the traditional 20 letters of the language. And while the à ± isnt part of the English alphabet, it frequently is used by careful writers when using adopted words such as jalapeà ±o, pià ±a colada, or pià ±ata and in the spelling of personal and place names. In Portuguese, the tilde is placed over vowels to indicate that the sound is nasalized. That use of the tilde has no apparent direct connection with the use of the tilde in Spanish. The Rest of the Story After this article was published, this site received additional information from Robert L. Davis, associate professor of Spanish from the University of Oregon: Thanks for including the interesting page on the history of the à ±. In a few places you express uncertainty about some of the details of this history; below I offer the information you need to complete the story. The reason the tilde appears over an N (as in Latin ANNU Sp. aà ±o) and Portuguese vowels (Latin MANU Po. mo) is that scribes wrote a small letter N over the preceding letter in both cases, to save space in manuscripts (parchment was expensive). As the two languages developed phonetically away from Latin, the double N sound of Latin morphed into the current palatal nasal sound of the Ñ, and Portuguese N between vowels got deleted, leaving its nasal quality on the vowel. So readers and writers began to use the old spelling trick to indicate the new sounds that did not exist in Latin. (Its really nice the way you framed the Ñ as the only Spanish letter of Spanish origin!) Also of potential interest to your readers: The word tilde actually refers to both the squiggle over the Ñ as well as the accent mark used to mark phonetic stress (e.g., cafà ©). There is even the verb tildarse, which means, to be written with an accent mark, to stress, as in La palabra cafà © se tilda en la e.The unique character of the letter Ñ has led to its becoming a marker of Hispanic identity in recent years. There is now a generacià ³n Ñ, the children of Spanish-speaking parents in the U.S. (parallel to Generation X, etc.), a stylized Ñ is the logo of the Cervantes Institute (, and so forth.The squiggle under the à § in Portuguese and French has a similar origin as the à ±. It is called a cedille, meaning little Z. It comes from the diminutive of the Old Spanish name for the letter Z, ceda. It was used to represent the ts sound in Old Spanish, which no longer exists in the language. E.g., O.Sp. caà §a (katsa) Mod. Sp. caza (casa or catha).Restaurants in the U.S. now offer dishes made with a very spicy pepper, the habanero, which is frequently mispronounced and misspelled as habaà ±ero. Since the name comes from La Habana, the capital of Cuba, this pepper should not have Ñ. I think the name has been contaminated by jalapeà ±o, which of course is simply a pepper from Jalapa, Mexico.

Wednesday, February 26, 2020

Ethics in Busniess Essay Example | Topics and Well Written Essays - 750 words

Ethics in Busniess - Essay Example For example, in U.S it is necessary for business accountants to implement given rules when conducting their businesses. The American system refers to these rules as the Generally Accepted Accounting Principles (GAAP) when they are involved in reporting the business financials. Therefore, every public company in U.S should follow the set accounting principles and report so that they can accurately release their financial information (Needles & Powers, 2011). Ethical Numerous fraud cases in the contemporary society constitute the moral and legal issues in accounting and financial reporting of businesses. The concerns include changes in the manner that fraudsters execute their operations. Consequently, most systems, which support financial reporting, are vulnerable to fraudulent activities. Therefore, it is necessary that the current accounting reporting adapt measures that would reduce immoral practices. Professionals usually create accounting rules because there are several emerging e thical issues in accounting. A need arises for accountants to follow all the ethical rules to minimize abuse on the profession (Albrecht, 2011). In addition, the issue of creative accounting is a concern to the ethical issues in accounting. This is because some accountants use their knowledge to create false crisis in the present world. These crises cause several damages, for example, misleading economic depiction. Consequently, ethical rules demand that businesses communicate about their respective financial positions. This will eliminate unreliable reports through annual accounting reports (Needles & Powers, 2011). The preparation of true reports is also a concern since some current accountants are immoral. They prepare false reports to the relevant people to benefit. For example, they account for money that was not even spent in their respective firms. Indeed, this allows them to keep the extra funds because no one came tell unless they are as professional as they are (Albrecht, 2011). Legal Presently, there are numerous legal requirements in accounting and financial reporting. This is because of the universal needs to protect both internal and external investors. In addition, several countries ensure that the legislation of their respective countries is against faulty accounting systems. There are also mandatory laws for all current accountants, which ensure that there are minimal illegal practices. For example, the creation of commissions enables accountants to counter legal issues in accounting (Albrecht, 2011). Other legal issues in the existing society include the emergence of audit firms. These audit firms visit organizations and in turn inspect their accounting books. This is a new phenomenon in accounting. Consequently, it forces organizations to be honest. This is because the audit firms take strict legal actions against firms whose accounting books display financial illegalities. For example, firms that fail to account funds have to be in court an d face respective fines. Finally, current legal concerns in accounting include the establishment of punishments that discourage people from committing accounting frauds (Needles & Powers, 2011). Technological concerns of accounting and financial reporting of business In the accounting and financial reporting of businesses, the accounting professionals are vital because they play a significant role within every successful business. The professional accountants

Monday, February 10, 2020

Reading Comprehension Essay Example | Topics and Well Written Essays - 750 words

Reading Comprehension - Essay Example Graphic organizers are a powerful tool to the students as it provides students with tools that they can use to show and examine the relationship between concepts in a text. The essay will delve in the teaching comprehension strategies and how the graphic organizers are used to enhance the learning of students. It will also focus on the benefits of using graphic organizers in teaching comprehension strategies. Teaching strategies are the tools that teachers use to enable students learn and understand whatever they are reading. To help students understand comprehension easily, graphic organizers are always used. Graphic organizers like semantic maps are used in self monitoring strategy. Semantic maps are devices that help students to derive explicit and implicit meanings from concepts, ideas and details that are in a text (Sewak & Lubin, 2007). This strategy is helpful to students as it increases their understanding and helps them to acquire, organize and maintain information. This str ategy can be used by providing students with semantic maps, which depict concepts from a passage and the key words (Adler, 2005). Students should read the passage and then find out the key words which they should link to those key words that are on the map. When semantic maps are used in teaching of comprehension, they make students put much focus on the concepts and main vocabularies which will enhance comprehension reading. For example, when a teacher is teaching on the concept of â€Å"whales†, the teacher can trigger the prior knowledge that the students have, by showing them a video and then allow them to point out the key words which relate to that topic. The metacognitive strategy can be enhanced by use of the concept diagrams. Concept diagram helps in comprehension skills and they show the relationship between concepts in a passage. Concept diagrams are graphics which describe the concepts in a passage, and their relationship from top to bottom (Boudah & Hagan-Burke, 2000). They also show how these concepts at the top support those at the bottom and they have lines that show the connections between concepts. The concept diagram makes students focus on concepts that enhance comprehension. When teaching comprehension and teachers are using concept diagrams, the teacher is to give an explanation about the different parts of the diagram. The teacher together with his students, they highlight the main concepts in a passage. Then the teacher provides a blank concept diagram and allows students to make their own connections (Sewak & Lubin, 2007). Hence this makes the students to be actively involved as they engage themselves in writing concepts of the diagram. Other graphic organizers that are useful when teaching comprehension are the story maps. The story maps are used by teachers to help the students to know the story structure. One way of using the story maps is when the teacher reads a story and stops at some points which are strategic to ask the students some questions. This strategy is necessary in understanding comprehension as it allows students to identify some important elements in the story such as the plot, characters and the setting (Adler, 2005). The story maps help to improve the literal, applied and interpretive comprehension skills of the students. In fact, it is a powerful tool for making students pay attention when

Thursday, January 30, 2020

Hazara people Essay Example for Free

Hazara people Essay 1. Friendship, guilt, redemption â€Å"He knew about Assef, the kite, the money, the watch with the lightning bolt hands. He had always known. ‘Come. There is a way to be good again,’ Rahim Khan had said on the phone just before hanging up. Said it in passing, almost as an afterthought. † (Chapter 14, pg 202). This quote symbolizes how Amir strived to do everything to forget, all he needed to do was to fly to Pakistan and see what Rahim Khan wanted him to do. So thats exactly what Amir did. Rahim Khan tells Amir that there is a way to be good again. Amir knew straightaway what he was talking about. He realizes, that all of those years, Rahim Khan had known about Assef, the kite, the money, the watch with the lightning bolt hands. He had always known. Rahim Khan had knew about Hassan getting raped. He needs to go to Afghanistan and talk about the ‘unspoken secret’ they both knew about. After the phone conversation, Amir keeps remembering Hassan saying ‘for you, a thousand times over! ’ Thinking of this, he knows he has to go to Afghanistan, see Rahim Khan, uncover the secrets and do whatever he asks to ‘be good again’. By this he means that Amir has the opportunity to make up for his betrayal of Hassan by saving his son, Sohrab. Rahim Khan knows what really happened to Hassan and also knows that this has been bothering Amir for years so he is basically implying that Amir can still redeem himself if he goes back to Afghanistan. When Amir ran, he ran from jealousy and fear; fear of Assef and fear of his own reputation as a Pashtun standing up for a Hazara. The negativity of the social setting influenced Amir’s rash decision on betraying Hassan. The prevailing theme of guilt and redemption is weaved through the journey of Amir’s life, influenced by the society, where Hazaras are betrayed. 2. Parental relationships â€Å"Here is another cliche my creative writing teacher would have scoffed at; like father like son. But, it was true, wasn’t it? As it turned out, Baba and I were more alike than I’d ever known. We had both betrayed the people who would have given their lives for us. And with that came this realization: that Rahim Khan had summoned me there to atone not just for my sins but for Baba’s too. † (Chapter 18, pg 238) I chose this quote because not only is it ironic in and of itself, but it also ironically characterizes all the characters in the novel. Amir felt his â€Å"sin†Ã¢â‚¬â€betraying Hassan—made him so different from his father. He has spent much of his life trying to please Baba and mimic his father’s life. It is ironic that now, all these years later, when he discovers he and had father were so similar, it sickens him rather than bringing him joy. In the novel, he continually states that he would’ve never would have dreamed that Baba’s greatest sin would be theft on so many different levels (stealing wife, purity, truth) and gone against the nang and namoos, he so adamantly preached to his son. Amir and Babas relationship changes throughout the novel. The novel starts out with Amir doing whatever he could to win his fathers attention, which includes betraying his best friend, Hassan. He betrayed Hassan for his fathers full attention. He then earns it when Hassan and Ali move out and Baba and Amir move to America. This quote shows that Amir and Baba are very alike. They both betrayed their best friends. Baba betrayed Ali by sleeping with his wife, and Amir betrayed Hassan by not standing up for him while getting assaulted. Then they both try to redeem themselves with doing other good deeds. Baba, running an orphanage, and Amir going back to Kabul to save Sohrab, Hassans son. 3. Maturing â€Å"Earlier in the morning, when I was certain no one was looking, I did something I had done twenty-six years earlier: I planted a fistful of crumpled money under a mattress† (Chapter 19, pg 254) This quote shows how Amir had changed and grew more mature than before. In Kabul, before he had done the same thing to kick out Ali and Hassan. I lifted Hassans mattress and planted my new watch and a handful of Afghani bills under it. I waited another thirty minutes. Then I knocked on Babas door and told what I hoped would be the last in a long line of shameful lies. † (pg. 110) Before, when he put the money under Hassans mattress, it was a coward move. He did it so Baba would get rid of both Hassan and Ali. Amir kept trying to cover up his past and get rid of it by setting Hassan up. He thought if Hassan left, then everything would go back to normal, but it didnt. Now, Amir had a heart. Rahim Khan told Amir to come back to Afghanistan to rescue Hassans son Sohrab. Amir stayed with Wahids family. They didnt have much at all. They served Amir all their food they had. Amir felt guilty for all the riches he had. Living in America, without war, having sanitary living conditions and enough food for meals three times a day. So, when it was time for Amir to leave, he snuck a fistful of money under the mattress. This time, it wasnt a coward who had done it, it had been a loving, but guilty man. Amir was slowly paying back his dues and hardships he had created in the past. 4. Strength of the human spirit â€Å"Then I told him I was going to Kabul. Told him to call the Caldwells in the morning. ‘I’ll pray for you, Amir jan,’ he said. †(Chapter 18 pg 239) Not only did Amir not stand up for himself, he did not stand up for others either (like Hassan when he got raped). Amir didnt dare to say his opinion, to the public, or to Assef that he and Hassan are friends because Hassan is Hazara and always was going to be. Later that changes. He fights for Sohrab, in fact what he really is doing is fighting back for all the times he didnt fight for Hassan, against Assef. In the fight he gets hare lipped just like Hassan, I think thats a symbol. A symbol that says that he has become as brave as Hassan. Another thing that indicates this change is that in the dreams he used to have where he couldnt part his father from the bear he later dreams of himself as the bear. He always admired his father, and his father was very brave. Bears are significant as brave and fearless. Back in Kabul, it seemed like Amir was finally doing something good in his life. After some misgivings, Amir agrees to rescue Hassans son, Sohrab, from an orphanage in Kabul. Amir even fights against a Taliban official who turns out to be Assef in order to save Sohrab. This reminds Amir and the readers that this time it wasn’t Hassan who was in Assef’s fist, it was his son and Amir had to save Sohrab because he couldn’t save Hassan last time. This is action instead of inaction; bravery instead of cowardice; selflessness instead of self-absorption. Perhaps this streak of good deeds will make up for his betrayal of Hassan. Its almost as if the confident Amir combines with the helpless and coward childhood Amir. While saving Sohrab, Amir makes a huge mistake and goes back on a promise to Sohrab. As a result, Sohrab tries to commit suicide. Were watching Amir repeat mistakes from the past even as he attempts to put the past to rest. This is Amir at his best and worst and perhaps this is the real Amir that really combines all the previous versions of him. Hes weak and blind, but also essentially kind. Hes jealous, but in the end only wants to be loved. Even though sometimes during the book, we would want to scream at Amir, but as we know that hes an utterly human character, and can’t blame him for anything. 5. ‘Discrimination and prejudice â€Å"True, I hadn’t made Ali step on that land mine, and I hadn’t brought the Taliban to the house to shoot Hassan. But I had driven Hassan and Ali out of the house. Was it too far-fetched to think things might have turned out differently if I hadn’t? Maybe Baba would have brought them to America. Maybe Hassan would have a home of his own now, a job, a family, a life in a country where no one cared that he was a Hazara, where most people didn’t even know what a Hazara was. Maybe not. But maybe so. † (Chapter 18, pg 238) The Kite Runner tackles the issue of discrimination in Afghanistan with an example of the relationship between Pashtuns and Hazaras. Babas father sets an example for Amir of being kind to Hazara people, even though they are historically not appreciated and persecuted. Baba could have easily sent Ali to an orphanage after his parents death, but he chose not to and picked the decision of raising him in his household. Baba does the same with Hassan, although this is because of the fact that Hassan is actually his son after all. Even in Babas house, the house of best intentions, the class barrier between the Pashtuns and Hazaras endures. Ali is as dear to Baba as a brother. Baba calls him family. But Ali still lives in a hut and sleeps on a mattress on the floor. He tends the garden, cooks, and cleans up after Baba, and raises Hassan to do the same. So strong is Hassans identity as a servant that even as an adult, when Baba is gone, he has no sense of entitlement. He insists on staying in the hut and doing housework. When Hassan dies defending Babas house, he does so not because he feels it belongs to him, but because he is being loyal to Baba and Amir. Discrimination is everywhere and nowhere at the same time. Assef tells Amir, Afghanistan is like a beautiful mansion littered with garbage, and someone has to take out the garbage. Like his idol, Hitler, he feels entitled to killing those he deems unworthy of living in his land. He even relishes the term ethnic cleansing because it goes so well with his garbage metaphor. Like Baba, many people do not mention the Hazaras history of persecution. The author shows that the persecution of the Hazaras is not new, but a greatly intensified outgrowth of long-held discrimination. 6. Man’s inhumanity to man â€Å"How could he have lied to me all those years? To Hassan? He had sat me on his lap when I was little, looked me straight in the eyes, and said, There is only one sin. And that is theft When you tell a lie, you steal someones right to the truth. Hadnt he said those words to me? And now, fifteen years after Id buried him, I was learning that Baba had been a thief. And a thief of the worst kind, because the things hed stolen had been sacred: from me the right to know I had a brother, from Hassan his identity, and from Ali his honor. His nang. His namoos. † (Chapter 18, pg 237) Until Rahim Khan reveals Babas secret, Amir thinks he is the only sinner among his family and friends. The biggest shocker to Amir was that Hassan was really his half brother. After Amirs mother died, Baba had slept with Hassans mother and got her pregnant. All along Baba knew that Hassan was his son and Ali covered as his father and the two of them were servants in Babas house. Amir thought about the reason why Baba was so worked up over Amirs mentioning of getting new servants was because he would be losing his son that way. There were so many signs he realizes like the plastic surgery and always inviting Hassan to events. Amir was filled with anger and he felt betrayed by Rahim and especially Baba. The regret is even greater in his life that he had driven out his own half brother and did not even know it, and now there is no way to make things right because Hassan is dead. Amir is shocked, taken back, and deeply hurt. Even before Amir betrays him, Hassan makes him feel guilty simply by being such a righteous person. Amir is constantly trying to measure up to Baba, because he does not realize that Baba is so hard on him because of his guilt over his own sin. Amir feels as though his entire life has been a cycle of betrayal, even before he betrayed Hassan. But having a taste of betrayal himself does little towards redeeming Amir. In Ghazi Stadium, the Taliban skews the words of Muhammad in order to justify murdering the alleged adulterers. The mullah announces that every person should have a punishment befitting his sin. Although he would not want to compare himself to the Taliban, Amir believes this in regards to his own sin. When he tried to get Hassan to pelt him with pomegranates, he was expressing his feeling that in order to be forgiven for hurting Hassan, Hassan must hurt him. When Assef almost kills Amir, he felt healed, as though now that Assef has hurt him, it is fair. He even tells Farid that in the room with Assef, he got what he deserved. In the end, Amir finds out that punishment is not what will redeem him from his sin. It is not even saving Sohrab. In order to make up for his sin and Babas before him, Amir must erase the lines of discrimination he has lived with all his life by giving Sohrab an equal chance at success and happiness.

Wednesday, January 22, 2020

William Shakespeares A Midsummer Nights Dream Essay -- Shakespeare M

William Shakespeare's A Midsummer Night's Dream A Midsummer Night’s Dream could have easily been a light-hearted, whimsical comedy. Complete with a magic forest and a kingdom of fairies, it is an iconic setting for amorous escapades and scenes of lovers. But Shakespeare’s writing is never so shallow; through this romantic comedy, Shakespeare postulates an extremely cynical view of love. A Midsummer Night’s Dream becomes a commentary on the mystery of love, and lovers in general emerge shamed. Especially in the episodes among the four young Athenians, the lover is painted as a fickle creature, always changing his or her mind, and love as a passing phenomenon. Love is not an unfathomable, kind emotion, but it is ironically cruel, and by the end of the play, the concept of true love is tinged with doubt. The lover is unreliable in A Midsummer Night’s Dream. This is first seen in Demetrius’s treatment of Helena. As the play opens, Demetrius is already in love with Hermia, but Helena tells us that she has once been his love: For ere Demetrius look’d on Hermia’s eyne, He hail’d down oaths that he was only mine; And when this hail some heat from Hermia felt, So he dissolv’d, and show’rs of oaths did melt (1.1.242- 245). Demetrius’s oaths lose their meaning, and Helena is left with a demeaning love. However, Demetrius is not alone in his mutability; Lysander, too, quickly replaces one love with another. Though Lysander is somewhat redeemed through the use of the love potion, the fact remains that his love changes. Early in the play he says to Hermia, â€Å"[M]y heart to yours is knit, / so that but one heart we can make of it† (2.2.47-48), but later he reviles his supp... ...e deeper and more resounding than the conflicts that are resolved. Is it possible for Demetrius and Helena to live happily ever after though the love binding them is synthetic? Can Lysander and Hermia ever have a trusting relationship, knowing the fickleness of love? A Midsummer Night’s Dream has potential to be a cheerful play, but it has too many sharp edges and hard scenes to be so. The concept of love is quite convincingly questioned. Here, love is not faithful, kind, or true; it can be lost and manufactured, and is alarmingly harsh. The play ends happily, with the young people in their respective couples, but the bitter undercurrents are too strong to ignore. Works Cited Shakespeare, William. A Midsummer Night's Dream. Norton Introduction to Literature. Ed. Jerome Beaty et. al. 8th ed. New York: W.W. Norton & Company, 2002. 1614-1670.

Tuesday, January 14, 2020

The Lost Symbol Chapter 132-133

CHAPTER 132 Katherine Solomon's heart felt light as she hurried up the hill toward the base of the Washington Monument. She had endured great shock and tragedy tonight, and yet her thoughts were refocused now, if only temporarily, on the wonderful news Peter had shared with her earlier . . . news she had just confirmed with her very own eyes. My research is safe. All of it. Her lab's holographic data drives had been destroyed tonight, but earlier, at the House of the Temple, Peter had informed her that he had been secretly keeping backups of all her Noetic research in the SMSC executive offices. You know I'm utterly fascinated with your work, he had explained, and I wanted to follow your progress without disturbing you. â€Å"Katherine?† a deep voice called out. She looked up. A lone figure stood in silhouette at the base of the illuminated monument. â€Å"Robert!† She hurried over and hugged him. â€Å"I heard the good news,† Langdon whispered. â€Å"You must be relieved.† Her voice cracked with emotion. â€Å"Incredibly.† The research Peter had saved was a scientific tour de force–a massive collection of experiments that proved human thought was a real and measurable force in the world. Katherine's experiments demonstrated the effect of human thought on everything from ice crystals to random-event generators to the movement of subatomic particles. The results were conclusive and irrefutable, with the potential to transform skeptics into believers and affect global consciousness on a massive scale. â€Å"Everything is going to change, Robert. Everything.† â€Å"Peter certainly thinks so.† Katherine glanced around for her brother. â€Å"Hospital,† Langdon said. â€Å"I insisted he go as a favor to me.† Katherine exhaled, relieved. â€Å"Thank you.† â€Å"He told me to wait for you here.† Katherine nodded, her gaze climbing the glowing white obelisk. â€Å"He said he was bringing you here. Something about `Laus Deo'? He didn't elaborate.† Langdon gave a tired chuckle. â€Å"I'm not sure I entirely understand it myself.† He glanced up at the top of the monument. â€Å"Your brother said quite a few things tonight that I couldn't get my mind around.† â€Å"Let me guess,† Katherine said. â€Å"Ancient Mysteries, science, and the Holy Scriptures?† â€Å"Bingo.† â€Å"Welcome to my world.† She winked. â€Å"Peter initiated me into this long ago. It fueled a lot of my research.† â€Å"Intuitively, some of what he said made sense.† Langdon shook his head. â€Å"But intellectually . . .† Katherine smiled and put her arm around him. â€Å"You know, Robert, I may be able to help you with that.† Deep inside the Capitol Building, Architect Warren Bellamy was walking down a deserted hallway. Only one thing left to do tonight, he thought. When he arrived at his office, he retrieved a very old key from his desk drawer. The key was black iron, long and slender, with faded markings. He slid it into his pocket and then prepared himself to welcome his guests. Robert Langdon and Katherine Solomon were on their way to the Capitol. At Peter's request, Bellamy was to provide them with a very rare opportunity–the chance to lay eyes upon this building's most magnificent secret . . . something that could be revealed only by the Architect. CHAPTER 133 High above the floor of the Capitol Rotunda, Robert Langdon inched nervously around the circular catwalk that extended just beneath the ceiling of the dome. He peered tentatively over the railing, dizzied by the height, still unable to believe it had been less than ten hours since Peter's hand had appeared in the middle of the floor below. On that same floor, the Architect of the Capitol was now a tiny speck some hundred and eighty feet below, moving steadily across the Rotunda and then disappearing. Bellamy had escorted Langdon and Katherine up to this balcony, leaving them here with very specific instructions. Peter's instructions. Langdon eyed the old iron key that Bellamy had handed to him. Then he glanced over at a cramped stairwell that ascended from this level . . . climbing higher still. God help me. These narrow stairs, according to the Architect, led up to a small metal door that could be unlocked with the iron key in Langdon's hand. Beyond the door lay something that Peter insisted Langdon and Katherine see. Peter had not elaborated, but rather had left strict instructions regarding the precise hour at which the door was to be opened. We have to wait to open the door? Why? Langdon checked his watch again and groaned. Slipping the key into his pocket, he gazed across the gaping void before him at the far side of the balcony. Katherine had walked fearlessly ahead, apparently unfazed by the height. She was now halfway around the circumference, admiring every inch of Brumidi's The Apotheosis of Washington, which loomed directly over their heads. From this rare vantage point, the fifteen- foot-tall figures that adorned the nearly five thousand square feet of the Capitol Dome were visible in astonishing detail. Langdon turned his back to Katherine, faced the outer wall, and whispered very quietly, â€Å"Katherine, this is your conscience speaking. Why did you abandon Robert?† Katherine was apparently familiar with the dome's startling acoustical properties . . . because the wall whispered back. â€Å"Because Robert is being a chicken. He should come over here with me. We have plenty of time before we're allowed to open that door.† Langdon knew she was right and reluctantly made his way around the balcony, hugging the wall as he went. â€Å"This ceiling is absolutely amazing,† Katherine marveled, her neck craned to take in the enormous splendor of the Apotheosis overhead. â€Å"Mythical gods all mixed in with scientific inventors and their creations? And to think this is the image at the center of our Capitol.† Langdon turned his eyes upward to the sprawling forms of Franklin, Fulton, and Morse with their technological inventions. A shining rainbow arched away from these figures, guiding his eye to George Washington ascending to heaven on a cloud. The great promise of man becoming God. Katherine said, â€Å"It's as if the entire essence of the Ancient Mysteries is hovering over the Rotunda.† Langdon had to admit, not many frescoes in the world fused scientific inventions with mythical gods and human apotheosis. This ceiling's spectacular collection of images was indeed a message of the Ancient Mysteries, and it was here for a reason. The founding fathers had envisioned America as a blank canvas, a fertile field on which the seeds of the mysteries could be sown. Today, this soaring icon–the father of our country ascending to heaven–hung silently above our lawmakers, leaders, and presidents . . . a bold reminder, a map to the future, a promise of a time when man would evolve to complete spiritual maturity. â€Å"Robert,† Katherine whispered, her gaze still fixated on the massive figures of America's great inventors accompanied by Minerva. â€Å"It's prophetic, really. Today, man's most advanced inventions are being used to study man's most ancient ideas. The science of Noetics may be new, but it's actually the oldest science on earth–the study of human thought.† She turned to him now, her eyes filled with wonder. â€Å"And we're learning that the ancients actually understood thought more profoundly than we do today.† â€Å"Makes sense,† Langdon replied. â€Å"The human mind was the only technology the ancients had at their disposal. The early philosophers studied it relentlessly.† â€Å"Yes! The ancient texts are obsessed with the power of the human mind. The Vedas describe the flow of mind energy. The Pistis Sophia describes universal consciousness. The Zohar explores the nature of mind spirit. The Shamanic texts predict Einstein's `remote influence' in terms of healing at a distance. It's all there! And don't even get me started about the Bible.† â€Å"You, too?† Langdon said, chuckling. â€Å"Your brother tried to convince me that the Bible is encoded with scientific information.† â€Å"It certainly is,† she said. â€Å"And if you don't believe Peter, read some of Newton's esoteric texts on the Bible. When you start to understand the cryptic parables in the Bible, Robert, you realize it's a study of the human mind.† Langdon shrugged. â€Å"I guess I'd better go back and read it again.† â€Å"Let me ask you something,† she said, clearly not appreciating his skepticism. â€Å"When the Bible tells us to `go build our temple' . . . a temple that we must `build with no tools and making no noise,' what temple do you think it's talking about?† â€Å"Well, the text does say your body is a temple.† â€Å"Yes, Corinthians 3:16. You are the temple of God.† She smiled at him. â€Å"And the Gospel of John says the exact same thing. Robert, the Scriptures are well aware of the power latent within us, and they are urging us to harness that power . . . urging us to build the temples of our minds.† â€Å"Unfortunately, I think much of the religious world is waiting for a real temple to be rebuilt. It's part of the Messianic Prophecy.† â€Å"Yes, but that overlooks an important point. The Second Coming is the coming of man–the moment when mankind finally builds the temple of his mind.† â€Å"I don't know,† Langdon said, rubbing his chin. â€Å"I'm no Bible scholar, but I'm pretty sure the Scriptures describe in detail a physical temple that needs to be built. The structure is described as being in two parts–an outer temple called the Holy Place and an inner sanctuary called the Holy of Holies. The two parts are separated from each other by a thin veil.† Katherine grinned. â€Å"Pretty good recall for a Bible skeptic. By the way, have you ever seen an actual human brain? It's built in two parts–an outer part called the dura mater and an inner part called the pia mater. These two parts are separated by the arachnoid–a veil of weblike tissue.† Langdon cocked his head in surprise. Gently, she reached up and touched Langdon's temple. â€Å"There's a reason they call this your temple, Robert.† As Langdon tried to process what Katherine had said, he flashed unexpectedly on the gnostic Gospel of Mary: Where the mind is, there is the treasure. â€Å"Perhaps you've heard,† Katherine said, softly now, â€Å"about the brain scans taken of yogis while they meditate? The human brain, in advanced states of focus, will physically create a waxlike substance from the pineal gland. This brain secretion is unlike anything else in the body. It has an incredible healing effect, can literally regenerate cells, and may be one of the reasons yogis live so long. This is real science, Robert. This substance has inconceivable properties and can be created only by a mind that is highly tuned to a deeply focused state.† â€Å"I remember reading about that a few years back.† â€Å"Yes, and on that topic, you're familiar with the Bible's account of `manna from heaven'?† Langdon saw no connection. â€Å"You mean the magical substance that fell from heaven to nourish the hungry?† â€Å"Exactly. The substance was said to heal the sick, provide everlasting life, and, strangely, cause no waste in those who consumed it.† Katherine paused, as if waiting for him to understand. â€Å"Robert?† she prodded. â€Å"A kind of nourishment that fell from heaven?† She tapped her temple. â€Å"Magically heals the body? Creates no waste? Don't you see? These are code words, Robert! Temple is code for `body.' Heaven is code for `mind.' Jacob's ladder is your spine. And manna is this rare brain secretion. When you see these code words in Scripture, pay attention. They are often markers for a more profound meaning concealed beneath the surface.† Katherine's words were coming out in rapid-fire succession now, explaining how this same magical substance appeared throughout the Ancient Mysteries: Nectar of the Gods, Elixir of Life, Fountain of Youth, Philosopher's Stone, ambrosia, dew, ojas, soma. Then she launched into an explanation about the brain's pineal gland representing the all-seeing eye of God. â€Å"According to Matthew 6:22,† she said excitedly, † `when your eye is single, your body fills with light.' This concept is also represented by the Ajna chakra and the dot on a Hindu's forehead, which–â€Å" Katherine stopped short, looking sheepish. â€Å"Sorry . . . I know I'm rambling. I just find this all so exhilarating. For years I've studied the ancients' claims of man's awesome mental power, and now science is showing us that accessing that power is an actual physical process. Our brains, if used correctly, can call forth powers that are quite literally superhuman. The Bible, like many ancient texts, is a detailed exposition of the most sophisticated machine ever created . . . the human mind.† She sighed. â€Å"Incredibly, science has yet to scratch the surface of the mind's full promise.† â€Å"It sounds like your work in Noetics will be a quantum leap forward.† â€Å"Or backward,† she said. â€Å"The ancients already knew many of the scientific truths we're now rediscovering. Within a matter of years, modern man will be forced to accept what is now unthinkable: our minds can generate energy capable of transforming physical matter.† She paused. â€Å"Particles react to our thoughts . . . which means our thoughts have the power to change the world.† Langdon smiled softly. â€Å"What my research has brought me to believe is this,† Katherine said. â€Å"God is very real–a mental energy that pervades everything. And we, as human beings, have been created in that image–â€Å" â€Å"I'm sorry?† Langdon interrupted. â€Å"Created in the image of . . . mental energy?† â€Å"Exactly. Our physical bodies have evolved over the ages, but it was our minds that were created in the image of God. We've been reading the Bible too literally. We learn that God created us in his image, but it's not our physical bodies that resemble God, it's our minds.† Langdon was silent now, fully engrossed. â€Å"This is the great gift, Robert, and God is waiting for us to understand it. All around the world, we are gazing skyward, waiting for God . . . never realizing that God is waiting for us.† Katherine paused, letting her words soak in. â€Å"We are creators, and yet we naively play the role of `the created.' We see ourselves as helpless sheep buffeted around by the God who made us. We kneel like frightened children, begging for help, for forgiveness, for good luck. But once we realize that we are truly created in the Creator's image, we will start to understand that we, too, must be Creators. When we understand this fact, the doors will burst wide open for human potential.† Langdon recalled a passage that had always stuck with him from the work of the philosopher Manly P. Hall: If the infinite had not desired man to be wise, he would not have bestowed upon him the faculty of knowing. Langdon gazed up again at the image of The Apotheosis of Washington–the symbolic ascent of man to deity. The created . . . becoming the Creator. â€Å"The most amazing part,† Katherine said, â€Å"is that as soon as we humans begin to harness our true power, we will have enormous control over our world. We will be able to design reality rather than merely react to it.† Langdon lowered his gaze. â€Å"That sounds . . . dangerous.† Katherine looked startled . . . and impressed. â€Å"Yes, exactly! If thoughts affect the world, then we must be very careful how we think. Destructive thoughts have influence, too, and we all know it's far easier to destroy than it is to create.† Langdon thought of all the lore about needing to protect the ancient wisdom from the unworthy and share it only with the enlightened. He thought of the Invisible College, and the great scientist Isaac Newton's request to Robert Boyle to keep â€Å"high silence† about their secret research. It cannot be communicated, Newton wrote in 1676, without immense damage to the world. â€Å"There's an interesting twist here,† Katherine said. â€Å"The great irony is that all the religions of the world, for centuries, have been urging their followers to embrace the concepts of faith and belief. Now science, which for centuries has derided religion as superstition, must admit that its next big frontier is quite literally the science of faith and belief . . . the power of focused conviction and intention. The same science that eroded our faith in the miraculous is now building a bridge back across the chasm it created.† Langdon considered her words for a long time. Slowly he raised his eyes again to the Apotheosis. â€Å"I have a question,† he said, looking back at Katherine. â€Å"Even if I could accept, just for an instant, that I have the power to change physical matter with my mind, and literally manifest all that I desire . . . I'm afraid I see nothing in my life to make me believe I have such power.† She shrugged. â€Å"Then you're not looking hard enough.† â€Å"Come on, I want a real answer. That's the answer of a priest. I want the answer of a scientist.† â€Å"You want a real answer? Here it is. If I hand you a violin and say you have the capability to use it to make incredible music, I am not lying. You do have the capability, but you'll need enormous amounts of practice to manifest it. This is no different from learning to use your mind, Robert. Well-directed thought is a learned skill. To manifest an intention requires laserlike focus, full sensory visualization, and a profound belief. We have proven this in a lab. And just like playing a violin, there are people who exhibit greater natural ability than others. Look to history. Look to the stories of those enlightened minds who performed miraculous feats.† â€Å"Katherine, please don't tell me you actually believe in the miracles. I mean, seriously . . . turning water into wine, healing the sick with the touch of a hand?† Katherine took a long breath and blew it out slowly. â€Å"I have witnessed people transform cancer cells into healthy cells simply by thinking about them. I have witnessed human minds affecting the physical world in myriad ways. And once you see that happen, Robert, once this becomes part of your reality, then some of the miracles you read about become simply a matter of degree.† Langdon was pensive. â€Å"It's an inspiring way to see the world, Katherine, but for me, it just feels like an impossible leap of faith. And as you know, faith has never come easily for me.† â€Å"Then don't think of it as faith. Think of it simply as changing your perspective, accepting that the world is not precisely as you imagine. Historically, every major scientific breakthrough began with a simple idea that threatened to overturn all of our beliefs. The simple statement `the earth is round' was mocked as utterly impossible because most people believed the oceans would flow off the planet. Heliocentricity was called heresy. Small minds have always lashed out at what they don't understand. There are those who create . . . and those who tear down. That dynamic has existed for all time. But eventually the creators find believers, and the number of believers reaches a critical mass, and suddenly the world becomes round, or the solar system becomes heliocentric. Perception is transformed, and a new reality is born.† Langdon nodded, his thoughts drifting now. â€Å"You have a funny look on your face,† she said. â€Å"Oh, I don't know. For some reason I was just remembering how I used to canoe out into the middle of the lake late at night, lie down under the stars, and think about stuff like this.† She nodded knowingly. â€Å"I think we all have a similar memory. Something about lying on our backs staring up at the heavens . . . opens the mind.† She glanced up at the ceiling and then said, â€Å"Give me your jacket.† â€Å"What?† He took it off and gave it to her. She folded it twice and laid it down on the catwalk like a long pillow. â€Å"Lie down.† Langdon lay on his back, and Katherine positioned his head on half of the folded jacket. Then she lay down beside him–two kids, shoulder to shoulder on the narrow catwalk, staring up at Brumidi's enormous fresco. â€Å"Okay,† she whispered. â€Å"Put yourself in that same mind-set . . . a kid lying out in a canoe . . . looking up at the stars . . . his mind open and full of wonder.† Langdon tried to obey, although at the moment, prone and comfortable, he was feeling a sudden wave of exhaustion. As his vision blurred, he perceived a muted shape overhead that immediately woke him. Is that possible? He could not believe he hadn't noticed it before, but the figures in The Apotheosis of Washington were clearly arranged in two concentric rings–a circle within a circle. The Apotheosis is also a circumpunct? Langdon wondered what else he had missed tonight. â€Å"There's something important I want to tell you, Robert. There's another piece to all this . . . a piece that I believe is the single most astonishing aspect of my research.† There's more? Katherine propped herself on her elbow. â€Å"And I promise . . . if we as humans can honestly grasp this one simple truth . . . the world will change overnight.† She now had his full attention. â€Å"I should preface this,† she said, â€Å"by reminding you of the Masonic mantras to `gather what is scattered' . . . to bring `order from chaos' . . . to find `at-one-ment.' â€Å" â€Å"Go on.† Langdon was intrigued. Katherine smiled down at him. â€Å"We have scientifically proven that the power of human thought grows exponentially with the number of minds that share that thought.† Langdon remained silent, wondering where she was going with this idea. â€Å"What I'm saying is this . . . two heads are better than one . . . and yet two heads are not twice better, they are many, many times better. Multiple minds working in unison magnify a thought's effect . . . exponentially. This is the inherent power of prayer groups, healing circles, singing in unison, and worshipping en masse. The idea of universal consciousness is no ethereal New Age concept. It's a hard-core scientific reality . . . and harnessing it has the potential to transform our world. This is the underlying discovery of Noetic Science. What's more, it's happening right now. You can feel it all around you. Technology is linking us in ways we never imagined possible: Twitter, Google, Wikipedia, and others–all blend to create a web of interconnected minds.† She laughed. â€Å"And I guarantee you, as soon as I publish my work, the Twitterati will all be sending tweets that say, `learning about Noetics,' and interest in this science will explode exponentially. † Langdon's eyelids felt impossibly heavy. â€Å"You know, I still haven't learned how to send a twitter.† â€Å"A tweet,† she corrected, laughing. â€Å"I'm sorry?† â€Å"Never mind. Close your eyes. I'll wake you when it's time.† Langdon realized he had all but forgotten the old key the Architect had given them . . . and why they had come up here. As a new wave of exhaustion engulfed him, Langdon shut his eyes. In the darkness of his mind, he found himself thinking about universal consciousness . . . about Plato's writings on â€Å"the mind of the world† and â€Å"gathering God† . . . Jung's â€Å"collective unconscious.† The notion was as simple as it was startling. God is found in the collection of Many . . . rather than in the One. â€Å"Elohim,† Langdon said suddenly, his eyes flying open again as he made an unexpected connection. â€Å"I'm sorry?† Katherine was still gazing down at him. â€Å"Elohim,† he repeated. â€Å"The Hebrew word for God in the Old Testament! I've always wondered about it.† Katherine gave a knowing smile. â€Å"Yes. The word is plural.† Exactly! Langdon had never understood why the very first passages of the Bible referred to God as a plural being. Elohim. The Almighty God in Genesis was described not as One . . . but as Many. â€Å"God is plural,† Katherine whispered, â€Å"because the minds of man are plural.† Langdon's thoughts were spiraling now . . . dreams, memories, hopes, fears, revelations . . . all swirling above him in the Rotunda dome. As his eyes began to close again, he found himself staring at three words in Latin, painted within the Apotheosis. E PLURIBUS UNUM. â€Å"Out of many, one,† he thought, slipping off into sleep.

Monday, January 6, 2020

Why Forrest Gump Is Very Much An Epic - 1584 Words

An Epic is defined as a long poem, typically derivative of ancient traditionally orally related tales that narrated the feats and adventures of heroic or often legendary figures, or the gallant history of a nation. I believe Forrest Gump is very much an epic. When a story transcends multiple lifetimes and incorporates many events across generational lines, it may be then considered epic. Forrest Gump, a tale about a man of slight mind but significant heart who originates from deficiency to become an American Hero leading one simple life leading to an adventure after another. The characterizations in the film and the original book by author Winston Groom will need to be explored to fully extrapolate on what make Forrest Gump an epic in its own right. These two manifestations have noticeably different characterizations of the title character and minor characters along with additional events, or changes to the timeline. Many of the events in the story are comparable to happenings in other epic tales as well such as Homer’s epic poem, The Odyssey and to a lesser extent in its precursor Homer’s The Iliad. Odysseus’s journey and the epic adventure that was Forrest Gump’s life are quite reminiscent of each other. When Forrest Gump leaves Greenbow, Alabama to play football for the University of Alabama he starts his long journey away from home. He travels to Vietnam, Washington D.C, New York City, China, Outer Space, and eventually back home to the United States of America afterShow MoreRelatedA Different Kind Of R R2205 Words   |  9 Pagesof their network to Freeform in order to serve the new generation of â€Å"Becomers† who are â€Å"fans on that epic adventure of becoming an adult – from first kiss to first kid!† (Dabney). Younger than Millennials, Becomers are young adults who are on the crazy journey of figuring out who they are and how to become an adult. With this new image, ABC Family became a place that according to their ad â€Å"Why is ABC Family Becoming Freeform?† encourages their inquisitive minds and is a place to grow and ask questionsRead More Subverting the Conventional: Combining Genre in Kellys Donnie Darko6339 Words   |  26 PagesArt direction, cinematography, and narrative structure are important elements of film, to name a few, that cannot be categorized by genre and are often left out of the classification process. Many theorists wonder what purpose genre serves and why people feel compelled to classify films in this manner. Braudy and Cohen ask the pertinent question, â€Å"Are they [genres] critical and commercial conveniences, designed merely to help market a film or to describe a film for those who have not seen itRead MoreLee Daniels The Butler3535 Words   |  15 Pagesyears, it offers a presidential level insight into the historic freedom movements of the 1960’s, all the way through until the day that Barack Obama is elected president in 2008. I am going to argue that Daniels’ representation of history and race are much more than a ‘parody of historical drama’, as he defies the ‘conventional’ stereotypes of Hollywood (Martin 2013) through the focus on individual character depictions and rejection of generalisations seen previously in African American films. In theRead MoreThe Studio System Essay14396 Words   |  58 Pagesexhibition knew what the public wanted. - Those in charge of distribution knew what those in charge of exhibition wanted. - Ultimate decision on making pictures laying with CEO who: - determined A and B picture budgets - how much to spend on prestige pics - tentative production schedules Only at this point did a Hollywood based production dept. enter the fray. To recap, executives far removed from Hollywood were able to make key policy-making decision