Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Random Thoughts #2

Dog is man's best friend, they say. And this is usually taken to mean best friend to the dog's owner. But is this always so?

Some time ago I had a friend who kept four or five dogs for protection since she lived alone. The dogs were mixed breeds, fierce looking, and they would bark up a storm. None of her friends could just push her gate and enter as we pleased. We had to wait for her to control the dogs, while we walked quickly into the safety of her enclosed verandah.

She also had  some large mango trees; bombay and julie, and those trees usually bore abundantly.

In Jamaica, mango season is fraught with the danger of casual thieves just walking in and stripping the trees. But, the dogs, we all thought would prevent anyone troubling my friend's trees.

Until one day, hearing sounds, she looked through her window and couldn’t believe her eyes.. There was a man with a bag collecting her mangoes, and all the dogs around him wagging their tails. She said the dogs looked as if they were helping the man. As if they were saying, 'This tree, not so sweet, try this one over here.'

The man, of course, ignored her when she called out to him and just continued collecting her mangoes, sure that a call to the police would not be answered. anytime soon.
Man's best friend!

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

The Ten Commandments

I am trying to come back to regular blogging. I have two new ebooks in the making, but for now I will just share some random thoughts.Usually these come to me at night when sleep is taking a break.

I bet most church folks would say that they know the ten commandments in the Old Testament. Whether they can live it daily is another matter. Whether you are a Christian or not, these commandments are still the best guide for social organization that we have. Whenever I think about the Ten Commandments two anecdotes spring to mind.

A very long time ago, when I was in second form (now Grade 8), our literature teacher was a very creative person. Literature classes could take us anywhere inside and outside the books being studied. I don’t recall why, but in one class, she asked out of the blue, how many commandments there were. Going down the line of students not one of us knew, for sure, and started guessing wildly  - up to 20, I think. She was not amused and I think the class got a detention.

I have often wondered why we froze and didn’t seem to know, considering that in those days, most of would have been attending Sunday School regularly and would have been exposed to Exodus and the stories therein.

I can only suppose that we were flummoxed because the question came in a Literature class. If it had come in a Sunday School class, we would not have had a problem. Maybe.

The second anecdote comes from a church service, where the visiting evangelist challenged the congregation to recite the ten commandments. Most persons knew some, but couldn’t recall all of them and not in the correct order. There were a lot of shamed faces in church that day.

Of course, a few contented them selves by saying that in the New Testament , Matthew 22:37-39, Jesus brought it down to only two which, if followed ,contain all the rest
37 And he said to him, Thou shalt love [the] Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy understanding.
38 This is [the] great and first commandment.
39 And [the] second is like it, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself.

If only we could remember.