Friday, June 08, 2007

Three books

Well, it seems that Bro. Tom Accuosti over at The Tao of Masonry has tagged me into the "Little Known Favorites" meme that is going around the Masonic blogging community right now. I am actually a bit surprised and pleased to be considered "cool" (for lack of a better word) enough to be included, as life often prevents me from posting as often as I would like. Between five kids, the Army, and a second job, I have precious little time to blog. That being said, however, this type of thing is right up my alley. Reading is one of my favorite activities, and I am developing quite an impressive library. Of course, sometimes it seems that I collect more books than I can read, and even though I have a big enough backlog to furnish me with a couple of years good reading, I still continue to accumulate more books. Without any further ado, here is my list:
Nicomachean Ethics by Aristotle- This may or may not be "lesser" known outside of the philosophical world, but before I took political philosophy classes, I had never heard of it. This was my first introduction into political philosophy, my "gateway drug" so to speak. Aristotle, in this work, defines "happiness" as life lived in accordance with virtue. As Masons, we are familiar with some of the virtues he discusses, such as temperance, prudence and justice. In fact it is quite possible that this book had an influence on whomever originally wrote our ritual, as many Masonic principles are found on its pages. Several times when reading this book I found myself saying "Hmmm, i've heard that before!"
Prayers for the Assassin by Robert Ferrigno-I found this one on the bargain rack at Barnes and Noble. It presents a dystopian vision of a near future United States where the Islamists have won, and most Americans have converted to Islam, either by choice or force. Not the strongest writing, but a fun read, and a chilling vision of where religious extremism (of any sort) could lead this country. Some of the premises are a bit far-fetched, but it's an enjoyable story and possibly prophetic warning.
My last choice is highly specialized to my own geekish tastes. I enjoy learning languages, and although I only speak two in addition to our own, I dabble in many more. Another Barnes and Noble bargain rack find, How to Learn Any Language by Barry Farber has been a great resource to me. Mr. Farber is a famous talk show host, and throughout the years, he has achieved at least nominal proficiency in more than 25 languages. What is even more amazing, is that he learned most of these languages on his own with no formal schooling. This book outlines his methods and suggestions and is filled with amusing anecdotes and useful advice. If you want to teach yourself a language, this book is an invaluable aid.


Blogger Tubulcain420 said...

is tough to find time between work, family and ritual to read. the last three books I read were:
Origins of Freemasonry by Dr. Margret Jacobs. Excellent look into early european masonry and its evolution.
Esoterika by Albert Pike
Incedable interpretations of the blue degrees. a must for all blue lodge masons.
then I listened to on CD, Making Man In Reasons Image, about the age of enlightenment, put out by Boston University.
8 cd's by a college professor on the 17th and 18th century evolution of society and the men who shaped it. It is difficult to discuss this era without incorporating freemasonry.
excellent work and gives one a better understanding of those times and why freemasonry was instituted.
great blog brother

4:55 AM  

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