slaves of the ordinary

To believe that one should be happy just to be alive, despite leading a hideous existence, is to think like a slave; to think that it is pleasant to have an ordinary and comfortable life…People squirm in agitation before a dark wall and dream about buying washing machines and television sets; they anxiously look to tomorrow, even though it will bring nothing.
—  Yukio Mishima
Be daring, be different, be impractical, be anything that will assert integrity of purpose and imaginative vision against the play-it-safers, the creatures of the commonplace, the slaves of the ordinary.
—  Cecil Beaton

Laurent knows.

And I’ll tell you why. This is in the first chapter of Captive Prince when Laurent first sees Damen. Look at his reaction.

Now if Damen was just an ordinary Akielos ‘slave’ then why would Laurent stop dead, face turning white upon seeing him. Laurent being Laurent probably wouldn’t give this reaction if it was any other Akielon, but this is Damen, the man who killed Laurent’s brother so this reaction makes the most sense, especially because he covered it up straight away. Also a few pages later Laurent purposely gets a rise out of Damen as seen below.

“So the country will be ruled by a bastard and a whore.” Damen’s pretty crap at keeping his cool and I swear he gives himself away at least half a dozen times throughout the series, but yes, Laurent got the rise out of Damen, which is exactly what he wanted because he knows exactly who Damen is. I’ll eat my hat if he doesn’t. There’s like a billion other reasons that could prove this and when I finish re-reading the books, I’m going to make a dot point list of each incident that suggests Laurent knows!

This time I’m taking it slow, absorbing each and every detail unlike my previously rushed and excited binge on the trilogy. I guess all shall be revealed in just under two weeks with Kings Rising. I’m going to die.

Do not ally yourself either in affection or interest with any one who is not an earnest student of the higher life, unless you can completely dominate him, and even then be sure that you either recompense or chastise him according to his deserts; for the profane person hears many truths, but understands none; his ears are large but have no discretion. The profane passes his life in giddy risks, deluded with vain desires, listening to imaginary promptings, and with his eyes fixed on fancied sights. You may think he is pleased with your aims, but the truth is that he is absorbed by his own follies; the profane has no appreciation of the truth, and feels no real affection. The profane is imprudent and shameless; he discloses things which should be kept concealed, and attracts to himself brute forces which may devour him. That which he most neglects is himself; he wears his vices as a blazon, but they are an ever−present burden to him, yet he does not recognise that they are a constant source of weakness. Make it a definite rule of life always to avoid:

- All men who show no courage, and all women who have not modesty.
- Those who do not maintain their friendships.
- Those who ask for advice, and then do not take it.
- Those who are never in the wrong.
- Those who are always seeking the impossible, and who are obstinately unjust to others.
- Those who, when danger is present, seek only their own safety.

All such persons are neither worthy of your confidence nor of your love. Fear contamination from them; avoid them. Yet even as you yourself must also avoid the follies of life, be careful not to put yourself in an attitude of superiority to the conditions of existence merely from a false pride, and never stoop to debase yourself to the level of the brute creation; rise above the common ways of life, and never become the slave of custom and conventionality. Treat the habits of ordinary life as others treat the weaknesses of childhood. Amuse the crowd to prevent personal injury, but never address it except in parables and enigmas; such has been the mode of conduct of all the great Masters of Magic, and in such an attitude there is wisdom.

—  Eliphas Levi

anonymous asked:

I'm doing a series of novellas based off fairy tales. I was hoping to do Cinderella and make her a black girl. But I was going to make her a slave instead of her being in servitude to her step family. Is that a terrible idea? Her being a slave? I want an appropriate setting, I don't want it to be offensive

Black Cinderella in Historical Roles

First:

Second:

The answer to your question would be “This could be a terrible idea.” Why? First, you want an “appropriate” setting and you seem to think that by making Cinderella a Black girl, you automatically have to make her a slave. Cinderella wasn’t a slave in the original fairytale to start out with, so it implies that a Black girl isn’t good enough to be just an ordinary girl, she just has to start off as a slave from the start to make the setting “appropriate.” Black people didn’t just exist in times of slavery. Play around with the time periods, do some more research. You could still have your story set in the 1800s and your Black character doesn’t have to be a slave.

Think about the nature of the Cinderella fairytale. Cinderella was an ordinary girl (or a girl of status depending on the version) whose mother died and her evil stepmother made her a servant in her own house. If she’s starts off as a slave and is a slave in the beginning, what exactly does she have to aspire to other than being free? What kind of agency does she have while being a slave? Not to say that she can’t have agency, but consider what making her a slave does to the overall Cinderella narrative:

  • How is she going to be at the ball?
  • Is her fairy godmother going to make her White so she can attend the ball?
  • Is she going to be serving at the ball and the prince hits on her?
  • Is the prince even going to be White?
  • If the prince is Black, is he going to be an actual prince or is he going to be a slave as well?

By adding a slave narrative to the Cinderella, you have infinitely complicated your story to the point where the Cinderella element to your story is no longer relevant and the slave narrative takes over. At WWC, we never want to discourage people from writing their stories, but this has the potential to backfire on you. Not only could it be offensive, but it’s a complex narrative that requires extensive research to pull off. What’s wrong with making Cinderella an average ordinary Black girl? The movie listed above does a fantastic job of transcending race, while also allowing for real representation to take place without making the titular character a slave.

~Mod Najela 

anonymous asked:

I really like your post about humanity but sincerely the attributes you speak of are nothing foreign to a Christian. You act like one and love like one. The thing is society tells you it's nothing but a hateful and controlling God. That is not the case. He basically wants us to do what your doing. In fact your a great example of a good follower and ironically you don't believe. That's something. Now I must ask, why don't you believe in God?

As for the Christian thing, I personally like listening to inspirational music, some of which happen to be Christian songs because they are hopeful and uplifting.

However, I can remove myself from what I want to feel and what I know. I’ve read a couple books on evolution and I have seen some snippets of the bible. The books on evolution make sense to me because they make logical sense and are backed up by evidence. The bits I’ve read from the bible are sometimes illogical and immoral.

Like for instance, one of the ten commandments is ‘don’t work on Sunday’. While at the time there was gender inequality and slavery. Wouldn’t an all knowing being have the foresight or even ordinary sight see that how women and slaves are treated is wrong. But he decides that not working on Sunday is more important. Can you imagine a world where in the bible it actually said ‘don’t have slaves’ and ‘treat women equally’. It wouldn’t have taken over a millennium for women and slaves to be treated as people.

To me that points to an obvious manipulation of the bible by people of power to control those who believe with their ears and not their mind.

I don’t believe in God like I don’t believe that Superman exists. Because I have no proof of their existence. Would I like Superman to exist? Hell yeah. But will I ignore that multitude of evidence against an actual Superman to believe Superman exist? No that’s illogical.

I believe in being moral because as society we are better off together than as individual beings. That to do good for the people around you will result in good in your life.

I don’t need God to be a good moral person.

Be daring, be different, be impractical, be anything that will assert integrity of purpose and imaginative vision against the play-it-safers, the creatures of the commonplace, the slaves of the ordinary.
—  Cecil Beaton
The Noble Year

In it’s 50+ year run, Doctor Who has taught us many lessons about life that we can often forget. It’s reminded us to try our best, to do what we believe is right, and that love can come in all variants of gender, race, and identity. But there’s one very important lesson that it teaches us in the form of Donna Noble.

Donna is, like us, ordinary. She’s not perfectly gorgeous, vastly intelligent, insanely talented. She has a crummy job, a less than perfect relationship with her mother, and more sass than anyone is able to take. She’s imperfect, but she’s not a total failure. When we first meet Donna, she’s selfish, manipulative, harsh, and, let’s face it, quite a bit of a bitch. But as her season progresses, so does she. She grows up before our eyes, and we forget the fact that Catherine Tate is best known for, well…

… a foul mouthed, hateful, old granny.

Catherine Tate came into Doctor Who as a comedic actress, and let’s not lie, Donna’s season was much funnier than Doctor Who has been in a long time. But Doctor Who isn’t all laughs, and neither was her performance. Donna was more than just the comedic relief. In fact, she was the source of our greatest sadness during her season. But we’re jumping ahead of ourselves with that. Back to her growth. As I mentioned before, Donna started out as a bitch. Pretty much the only thing she did right was the amount of love she showed her grandfather. Her mother constantly put her down by comparing her to other, more successful, women. By the time Donna came to us, she didn’t think she was worth much. But she went with the Doctor anyway, because he’s not ordinary. He’s amazing and special, and she wants to see the universe like he does, for once in her life. And although she does see wonderful things, the universe is not a nice place. Though harsh, Donna is a good person. Her heart’s in the right place, her mouth not always so much. During her time, she’s confronted with a decision between saving Pompeii or saving the Earth.

It’s a horrible decision that no one should be forced to make, because she’s right. It’s not fair. This was probably the first truly adult decision she’s made in her life, and it’s utterly devastating to watch. But she did what she knew was right, and didn’t let the Doctor pull the lever himself (thus carrying that weight solely on his shoulders).

Sharing in the Doctor’s pain continues to be a theme through this season, as Donna next encounters a race of telepathic slaves. In a holding cell, the Doctor tells her about the song they’re singing: The song of slavery. She wants to hear it, too.

The Doctor, being a telepath, gives her the ability to hear the song. She can’t stand it, and asks the Doctor to take it away. And honestly, we’re right there with her. Who among us would be able to listen to a song that represents generations of slavery, oppression, and abuse, and walk away from that unscathed? Certainly Donna can’t, and she does the most selfless thing she’s ever done. Together, Donna and the Doctor free the slave race. Not bad for an ordinary woman, is it?

the season went on and Donna continued to grow. she became a better person. And this ordinary woman continues to do amazing things. But through it all, she maintains the idea that it’s not her that’s special, it’s what she’s doing that’s special. It’s who she’s traveling with. She believes it has nothing to do with her. But in the season finale, we find out that this ordinary woman was the most important woman in the universe.

Through some science that would take far too long to explain to those who don’t already know, Donna becomes a human with a Time Lord brain. She asks the Doctor why this happened to her in one of the most honest scenes in the show.

And why should she believe she’s special? why should any of us? We’re normal people with normal lives and normal jobs. We aren’t extraordinary at all, and neither is Donna. But we’re all special, and we could all use that reminder occasionally. The fact that Donna helped Agatha Christie overcome her depression doesn’t really register with her, because she believes that, while she may have done some pretty special things, she is nothing special. But the thing that Doctor Who is teaching us this season is that everyone is special. That everyone is important. And that everyone can be insecure at times.

Donna is extraordinary because of the way she chooses to be. She has a kind heart. She cares. She comforts her friends and loved ones when they’re upset, and when push comes to shove, she does the right thing, even when it’s difficult and terrifying and upsetting right to her core.

You and I may never save the planet from an alien invasion, or free slaves, or save just one life. But that doesn’t mean we’re not special. But we do need that reminder sometimes, and the 4th season of Doctor Who delivered that message with a spark of humor, and more than a little heartbreak.