A HORROR STORY

Chains

by Paul Aurandt

“It was in a little colonial house in eastern Virginia . . . that Henry lived . . . apparently alone.

“One late evening, friends came to visit.  Henry and his guests sat in the candlelit parlor, quietly talking, watching the flickering shadows on the walls.  There was a lull in the conversation . . . and a noise!

“Faint at first, then louder.

“A scratching sound . . . beneath the floor.

“Everyone had heard it.  Henry . . . pretended not to.

“There were lighthearted remarks about ghosts and such, and after a minute or so, Henry stretched, yawned, asked to be excused so that he might retire for the night.

“When his visitors had gone, Henry tugged at his collar, sighing.  He was alone again.  And none too soon.

“For as Henry’s friends rode off into the dark, against the fading counterpoint of their horses’ hoofs . . . another noise.  Like the first.  Followed by the sound of dragging along the floor joists beneath Henry’s feet.

“Henry stiffened, silently regarding the inconspicuous trapdoor in the hallway floor.

“He reached for a lantern, approached the secret entrance, bent down, took hold of the smooth iron ring . . . and pulled the false panel away.

“Henry peered into the gaping blackness, lowering his lantern, then himself, into the cold cellar.

“As the kerosene flame cast a soft yellow light all about, there was a rustling in the corner.  A figure, barely visible through the gloom, cringing in terror of the brightness, waited.

“Henry walked toward it.

“Henry lifted the lantern . . . and the light fell directly . . . upon a face!  A horribly animated countenance with twisted features which snarled one moment and wept the next.  A blanched wild-eyed visage, filled with torment.  The face . . . of Henry’s wife.

“Henry could not recall the duration of her madness, nor could he recount the endless procession of days and months he had descended the cellar stairs to feed and to care for her.  All the hours of Henry’s life had by now blended into one solitary hour of despair.

“For Henry, the anguish had not diminished . . . to watch his wife tug against her straitjacket restraints . . . to see his love imprisoned through no wrong of her own.

“Once in a great while, like the pulsing glow of a near-cold ember, the faint reflection of a happiness long past shone in the beleaguered woman’s face.  And then, like a flash of black lightning, the horror would return.

“These were the visions that stalked Henry from the depths of that secret place . . . the waking dreams he took to bed with him at night, and at morning into the warm sun.

“Was this on his mind?  Did those visions haunt him, as he addressed the assembly at St. John’s Church the next day, March 23, 1775?  These were his words:

“‘Shall we try argument? . . . Shall we resort to entreaty? . . . What terms shall we find which have not been already exhausted? . . . We have petitioned, we have remonstrated, we have supplicated . . . . We have been spurned with contempt. . . . There is no longer any room for hope. . . . Is life so dear or peace so sweet as to be purchased at the price of chains? . . . Forbid it, Almighty God! . . . I know not what course others may take, but as for me, give me liberty or give me death!’

Patrick Henry.

“And now you know THE REST OF THE STORY.”

EASY ON THE EYES #22

Kathleen QuinlanKathleen Quinlan againKathleen Quinlan 1Kathleen Quinlan 2Kathleen Quinlan 3Kathleen Quinlan 4Kathleen Quinlan 5Kathleen Quinlan 6Kathleen Quinlan 7Kathleen Quinlan 8Kathleen Quinlan 9Kathleen Quinlan 10Kathleen Quinlan 11

Actress KATHLEEN QUINLAN at the Los Angeles premiere of Red Eye. August 4, 2005 Los Angeles, CA © 2005 Paul Smith / Featureflash*** USA ONLY ***

Actress KATHLEEN QUINLAN at the Los Angeles premiere of Red Eye.
August 4, 2005 Los Angeles, CA
© 2005 Paul Smith / Featureflash*** USA ONLY ***

Kathleen Quinlan 13Kathleen Quinlan 14

MY GIANT, Kathleen Quinlan, 1998, (c)Columbia Pictures

MY GIANT, Kathleen Quinlan, 1998, (c)Columbia Pictures

Kathleen Quinlan 16Kathleen Quinlan 17Kathleen Quinlan 18

of the film "xxx" poses in the portrait studio during AFI FEST 2007 presented by Audi held at ArcLight Cinemas on November 7, 2007 in Hollywood, California.

of the film “xxx” poses in the portrait studio during AFI FEST 2007 presented by Audi held at ArcLight Cinemas on November 7, 2007 in Hollywood, California.

Kathleen Quinlan 20Kathleen Quinlan 21Kathleen Quinlan 22Kathleen Quinlan 23

Kathleen Quinlan pictured at the "Made of Honor" world premiere at the Ziegfeld Theater in New York City on April 28, 2008. © RD / Dziekan / Retna Digital.

Kathleen Quinlan pictured at the “Made of Honor” world premiere at the Ziegfeld Theater in New York City on April 28, 2008. © RD / Dziekan / Retna Digital.

Kathleen Quinlan 25Kathleen Quinlan 26Kathleen Quinlan 27Kathleen Quinlan 28Kathleen Quinlan 29

ca. January 1986 --- Actress Kathleen Quinlan in White Lace Dress --- Image by © Douglas Kirkland/Corbis

ca. January 1986 — Actress Kathleen Quinlan in White Lace Dress — Image by © Douglas Kirkland/Corbis

Kathleen Quinlan 31Kathleen Quinlan 32Kathleen Quinlan 33Kathleen Quinlan 34Kathleen Quinlan 35Kathleen Quinlan 36Kathleen Quinlan 37

KATHLEEN QUINLAN as Bonnie, Robert Hanssen?s devoutly religious and trusting wife, in the thriller ?Breach?.

KATHLEEN QUINLAN as Bonnie, Robert Hanssen?s devoutly religious and trusting wife, in the thriller ?Breach?.

Kathleen Quinlan 40Kathleen Quinlan 41Kathleen Quinlan 42Kathleen Quinlan 43Kathleen Quinlan 44Kathleen Quinlan 45Kathleen Quinlan 46

LOS ANGELES - SEPTEMBER 12: Actress Kathleen Quinlan attends the premiere of "Apollo 13 - The IMAX Experience" at Universal Studios on September 12, 2002 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Vince Bucci/Getty Images)

LOS ANGELES – SEPTEMBER 12: Actress Kathleen Quinlan attends the premiere of “Apollo 13 – The IMAX Experience” at Universal Studios on September 12, 2002 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Vince Bucci/Getty Images)

Kathleen Quinlan 48Kathleen Quinlan 49Kathleen Quinlan 50Kathleen Quinlan 51Kathleen Quinlan 52Kathleen Quinlan 53Kathleen Quinlan 54Kathleen Quinlan 55Kathleen Quinlan 56Kathleen Quinlan 57

Kathleen Quinlan at Society of Singers honors Andy Williams with 17th Annual ELLA Award Beverly Hilton, Beverly Hills, CA, USA May 19, 2008 © RD/DiMaio/Retna Digital

Kathleen Quinlan at Society of Singers honors Andy Williams with 17th Annual ELLA Award
Beverly Hilton, Beverly Hills, CA, USA
May 19, 2008
© RD/DiMaio/Retna Digital

FOUND IN GOOGLING

Michelle-McNamara-Zoo-Australian-Swimsuit-Calendar-2008

https://petenashphotography.photoshelter.com

DRUNKEN POST #45

My immediate family–my parents, my two sisters, and my two brothers-in-law–has completely shut me out of its life.

I have been excommunicated from my immediate family, for being truthful.

It is said that when Martin Luther was excommunicated from the Church for being truthful, he was asked where he would sleep.

“Under the stars,” Martin Luther replied.

You know, Martin Luther King, Jr.’s, father was named after Martin Luther.

“How hard it is to meet my Lord!

“The rain-bird wails in thirst for the rain:  almost dies of her longing, yet she would have none other water than the rain.

“Drawn by the love of music, the deer moves forward:  she dies as she listens to the music, yet she shrinks not in fear.

“The widowed wife sits by the body of her dead husband:  she is not afraid of the fire.

“Put away all fear for this poor body.”

Kabir

(translated by Rabindranath Tagore)

“All day I think about it, then at night I say it.

“Where did I come from, and what am I supposed to be doing?

“I have no idea.

“My soul is from elsewhere, I’m sure of that,

“and I intend to end up there.

“This drunkenness began in some other tavern.

“When I get back around to that place,

“I’ll be completely sober.  Meanwhile,

“I’m like a bird from another continent, sitting in this aviary.

“The day is coming when I fly off,

“but who is it now in my ear who hears my voice?

“Who says words with my mouth?

“Who looks out with my eyes?  What is the soul?

“I cannot stop asking.

“If I could taste one sip of an answer,

“I could break out of this prison for drunks.

“I didn’t come here of my own accord, and I can’t leave that way.

“Whoever brought me here will have to take me home.”

Rumi

(translated by Coleman Barks, et alia)

DOES GOD HELP THOSE WHO HELP THEMSELVES?

[This was originally posted September 15, 2015]

No.  Absolutely not.  Not from a secular perspective, not from a religious/spiritual perspective.

The origin of the proverb, “God helps those who help themselves,” is uncertain–though it’s believed to have originated in Ancient Greece.  One thing is certain: It’s not anywhere in the Bible–though it’s drilled into our heads as if it is.

My devoutly Christian parents raised their children on this thinking, just as countless other devoutly Christian parents did (and still do).  But it is in direct contradiction to Biblical teachings–especially the teachings ascribed to Jesus.  If anything, the Bible teaches the reverse:  God helps those who cannot help themselves.

So how did this nonsense get into the instructional repertoire of Christian parents?  Lack of faith.  Parents who teach this lack faith themselves.  They are hypocrites–though not usually conscious of their hypocrisy.  To teach your children that God helps those who help themselves is to teach them that God really doesn’t help anyone.  Yet as you help yourself, following the teachings of your parents, you come to believe that God is helping you.  He’s not–you’re just helping yourself.  But you don’t think, as a child, to question your parents’ faith–so you don’t.

Now–does our Creator help anyone at all, whether he/she helps himself/herself or not?  The Creator certainly doesn’t help me.  And for every story of the Creator helping anyone, there are millions of stories of the Creator not helping anyone.

Can the Creator help anyone?  Of course.  It is only logical that the Creator of everyone and everything has the power to help anyone and anything at any time.

So, as a reluctant Deist, I wait.  I don’t expect the Creator to help me–but I hope the Creator will.

And this is all the faith of which I’m capable.

WALK THAT TALK!

You believe the Bible is the all-inspired, infallible, Word of God–and you don’t even read it?

You believe Jesus was the incarnation of God on earth–and you don’t even follow him?

You should be ashamed of yourselves!

ON THE TWENTY-DOLLAR BILL AND THE FIVE-DOLLAR BILL

I am glad the Secretary of the Treasury decided to replace Andrew Jackson with a woman rather than Alexander Hamilton.

Andrew Jackson was a great general, but a terrible president because of his appalling treatment of Native Americans.

And I feel that Harriet Tubman is a good choice to replace Jackson.

Unlike a women’s suffragist, Harriet Tubman helped both men and women.

She was a tough lady.  At times, when freed slaves changed their minds, she was known to force them onto Underground Railroad cars at gunpoint.  This was harsh, but necessary.  Any freed slave could be coerced into revealing Harriet Tubman’s operation, thereby endangering the lives of other freed slaves.

In her portrait, she looks as tough as she was–and as resolute.

I would like to have met her.

Now it is time for a Native American to replace Abraham Lincoln.

Lincoln was not the “Great Emancipator”.  He waged a needless war that got countless Americans killed for absolutely nothing.  His predecessor, James Buchanan, granted seven Southern states the right to secede from the United States peacefully.  And Abraham Lincoln waged a war, not to free slaves, but to take back those seven Southern states.

A Native American should replace Lincoln–it is only fair.

This Native American could be a woman–but could just as well be a man.

A Native American woman, Sacagawea, has already graced a one-dollar coin.

I think Sequoyah would be a great choice to replace Lincoln.  Sequoyah created a written alphabet for the Cherokees.

But there are many other Native American men who would make good choices to replace Lincoln.

Geronimo, Cochise, Crazy Horse, Chief Joseph, Chief Seattle, Squanto, Stand Watie, Black Elk, Quanah Parker, Red Cloud, Powhatan, Sitting Bull, and Tecumseh are among these.

A SAD TRUTH I REALIZE TODAY

There is a limit to human good–but there is no limit to human evil.

TWO MORE TRUE STATEMENTS

The Israel of today is not the Israel of Biblical times.

The Church of today is not the Church of Biblical times.

TWO TRUE STATEMENTS

Not every valid statement is true.

Every true statement is valid.



Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 133 other followers