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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Not very magical, still... » » The Five Boons of Life (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

landmark
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A short fairy story as served up by Mark Twain...

https://jackshalom.net/2018/12/04/the-five-boons-of-life/
"I use my five illusions to create the sense I'm useful to six."



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Mike Gainor
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"Here are gifts. Take one, leave the others. And be wary, chose wisely; oh, choose wisely! for only one of them is valuable."

The gifts were five ministries : Love, Peace, Plenty, Truth, and Death. The youth said, eagerly:

"There is no need to consider..."


Morale of the story: Beware of faeries bearing gifts Smile
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Mike Gainor
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Quote:
Twain's views became more radical as he grew older. In a letter to friend and fellow writer William Dean Howells in 1887 he acknowledged that his views had changed and developed over his lifetime, referring to one of his favorite works:

When I finished Carlyle's French Revolution in 1871, I was a Girondin; every time I have read it since, I have read it differently – being influenced and changed, little by little, by life and environment ... and now I lay the book down once more, and recognize that I am a Sansculotte! And not a pale, characterless Sansculotte, but a Marat.


I found this very interesting.

I was very 'optimistic' in my younger years and have become much less so in the later.
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Twain had a lot of disappointments in his later life; I don't know when this story was written, but it feels like hard won knowledge about life.
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"I use my five illusions to create the sense I'm useful to six."



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Mike Gainor
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That's an odd form of hindsight. Avoid pleasure because it is fleeting, avoid love because it will torment you, avoid fame because it rhymes with shame, avoid riches because impoverish people will feel sad, and instead embrace death, but no... the good faerie used it to snuff a kid instead.

... so there's that.
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Puppets seem like vampires sometimes. They live, and you're depleted.
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magicfish
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Excruciating. I sat in my truck and made it to the end without commiting suicide and I still don’t know what happened.
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Oh, the production was fine but the good faerie was trying to force death like a punter with a new trick failing with a 'free choice'... Smile

The message was just a bit heavy handed.
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Puppets seem like vampires sometimes. They live, and you're depleted.
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Jonathan Townsend
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That's not a nice fairy to offer gifts of pain, suffering, want, loneliness and something we all get eventually.
.. now if they offered health, sanity, wisdom, compassion and a better excuse... Smile
...to all the coins I've dropped here
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She may be the only Tinkerbell in town. And even she can't escape.

It's a bitter tale, but compare to Shakespeare's Ages of Man speech which ends "sans teeth, sans eyes, sans everything."
"I use my five illusions to create the sense I'm useful to six."



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magicfish
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I think this interpretation misses the intended humour .
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“It's a bitter tale”
Perhaps it wasn’t meant to be.
Jonathan Townsend
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Twain had likely read Gulliver's Travels - and so would recall the immortals of Luggnagg.

Choose for me? ?!?
...to all the coins I've dropped here
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Nice connection for those fellows who share a November 30 birthday.

I was also reminded of Ecclesiastes I.
"I use my five illusions to create the sense I'm useful to six."



You can read my daily blog at Musings, Memories, and Magic
magicfish
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Remember now thy Creator?
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Https://www.kingjamesbibleonline.org/Ecclesiastes-Chapter-1/

2 Vanity of vanities, saith the Preacher, vanity of vanities; all is vanity...

14 I have seen all the works that are done under the sun; and, behold, all is vanity and vexation of spirit.

15 That which is crooked cannot be made straight: and that which is wanting cannot be numbered.

16 I communed with mine own heart, saying, Lo, I am come to great estate, and have gotten more wisdom than all they that have been before me in Jerusalem: yea, my heart had great experience of wisdom and knowledge.

17 And I gave my heart to know wisdom, and to know madness and folly: I perceived that this also is vexation of spirit.

18 For in much wisdom is much grief: and he that increaseth knowledge increaseth sorrow.
"I use my five illusions to create the sense I'm useful to six."



You can read my daily blog at Musings, Memories, and Magic
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