Pook's Hill

being a compendium of all the things that Puck lost down the back of the sofa of Time

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The old, old story

Some quotes from 19th century Unitarian feminists:

“Ours is the old, old story of every uprising race or class or order. The work of elevation must be wrought by ourselves or not at all.”

~ Frances Power Cobbe 

"We would have every arbitrary barrier thrown down. We would have every path laid open to women as freely as to men. If you ask me what offices they may fill, I reply – any. I do not care what case you put; let them be sea captains, if you will."

~ Margaret Fuller

 “I hope there are some who will brave ridicule for the sake of common justice to half the people in the world.”

~ Barbara Leigh Smith Bodichon

“Women have a heritage in religion to regain, develop, and carry forward. This is not a feminist movement; it concerns men as well as women and offers benefits to both.”

~ Margaret Crook

“Every spiritual experience is in its essential nature a mystery; every yearning after things Divine, every prayer sent up to the Infinite, every aspiration after eternity… We can only understand the Divine language if we attune our minds to it; only by looking for the essence and reality of things shall we become aware that there is a Divine Reality in all things.”

~ Gertrude von Petzold

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Of all tyrannies, a tyranny exercised for the good of its victims may be the most oppressive. It may be better to live under robber barons than under omnipotent moral busybodies. The robber baron’s cruelty may sometimes sleep, his cupidity may at some point be satiated; but those who torment us for our own good will torment us without end, for they do so with the approval of their consciences.
C. S. Lewis (1898-1963), British Novelist

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It is not the strongest of the species that survives, nor the most intelligent that survives. It is the one that is most adaptable to change.

Charles Darwin
(Now substitute “religions” for “species” and think about what that might mean…)

It is not the strongest of the species that survives, nor the most intelligent that survives. It is the one that is most adaptable to change.

Charles Darwin

(Now substitute “religions” for “species” and think about what that might mean…)

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The Universe—some information to help you live in it.

The Universe—some information to help you live in it.

1 AREA: Infinite.

The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy offers this definition of the word “Infinite.”
Infinite: Bigger than the biggest thing ever and then some. Much bigger than that in fact, really amazingly immense, a totally stunning size, real “wow, that’s big,” time. Infinity is just so big that, by comparison, bigness itself looks really titchy. Gigantic multiplied by colossal multiplied by staggeringly huge is the sort of concept we’re trying to get across here.

2 IMPORTS: None.

It is impossible to import things into an infinite area, there being no outside to import things in from.

3 EXPORTS: None.

See Imports.


It is known that here are an infinite number of worlds, simply because there is an infinite amount of space for them to be in. However, not every one of them is inhabited. Therefore, there must be a finite number of inhabited worlds. Any finite number divided by infinity is as near to nothing as makes no odds, so the average population of all the planets in the Universe can be said to be zero. From this it follows that the population of the whole Universe is also zero, and that any people you may meet from time to time are merely products of a deranged imagination.


In fact there are three freely convertible currencies in the Galaxy, but none of them count. The Altairian Dollar has recently collapsed, the Flainian Pobble Bead is only exchangeable for other Flainian Pobble Beads, and the Triganic Pu has its own very special problems. Its exchange rate of eight Ningis to one Pu is simple enough, but since a Ningi is a triangular rubber coin six thousand eight hundred miles along each side, no one has ever collected enough to own one Pu. Ningis are not negotiable currency, because the Galactibanks refuse to deal in fiddling small change. From this basic premise it is very simple to prove that the Galactibanks are also the product of a deranged imagination.

6 ART: None.

The function of art is to hold the mirror up to nature, and there simply isn’t a mirror big enough—see point one.

7 SEX: None.

Well, in fact there is an awful lot of this, largely because of the total lack of money, trade, banks, art or anything else that might keep all the nonexistent people of the Universe occupied.
However, it is not worth embarking on a long discussion of it now because it really is terribly complicated. For further information, see Guide Chapters seven, nine, ten, eleven, fourteen, sixteen, seventeen, nineteen, twenty-one to eighty-four inclusive, and in fact most of the rest of the Guide.

—Douglas Adams, The Restaurant at the End of the Universe

via waitingforasign

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When Freyja lost Od, she cried tears of gold. Indeed, according to Snorri, this is why “Freyja’s tears” became a kenning for gold. I always found the fact that her tears were gold a mild curiosity. Now I see it as an incredibly profound mystery. And I have a much greater appreciation for the value of grief. Indeed, I’d go so far as to say that true grief is a sacred act in its own right. Hence the tears of gold. I wanted to quit being sad over the breakup. I kept wanting to “move on already.” I didn’t want to shed any more tears. I was “wasting time.” But no, the tears, the sadness, the grief kept coming. And my sweet Lady kept telling me, “No, you need this. Cry your tears. They’re my golden tears.” So I did the only thing I could do, I cried, and I explored my grief. Then I realized why I cried so much. I was experience true grief, the kind that only comes when one loves so freely and without reservation, only to lose that love. In effect, I wept bitterly because I loved fully. And there is a certain beauty in that.

Jarred Harris, Tears of Gold

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Living means growing and changing. To live is to feel discomfort and pain along with the pleasure and the joy. It is to feel the awkwardness of not speaking the language, not knowing the customs, not being able to differentiate safety from danger. It is to feel the floor drop out beneath you. Living is diving into the wild mess of life not knowing what’s coming next except that it will challenge and change you.
Life or death - an everyday choice, Andy Pakula, Throw Yourself Like Seed

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