Wednesday, August 6, 2008
In "Alice In Wonderland" Lewis Carroll (Charles Lutwidge Dodgson) wrote the riddle "Why is a raven like a writing desk?"
When Alice was asked this question in the story, she did not give an answer, however, the 1896 edition of "Alice In Wonderland" contains an attempt by Carroll himself.
Carroll wrote: "Because it can produce very few notes, tho they are
very flat; and it is nevar [sic] put with the wrong end in front."
Aldous Huxley, in the September 1928 issue of Vanity Fair, answered the riddle this way: "Because there's a 'b' in both, and because there's an 'n' in neither." It's possible that Huxley's answer was based on his observation of Carroll's writings. Sometimes the words themselves are more important than their meaning (or their grammatical correctness).
Please note that Lewis Carroll in his answer to his own riddle, spelled the word "never" incorrectly. Do you know why? What happens when you spell "nevar" backwards? A tragedy is that subsequent printings contained what a copy editor must have thought was a spelling correction. I think Carroll would have insisted that it be changed back to "nevar" had he not been dead by then.
Many years later another answer to the riddle "Why is a raven like a writing desk?" appeared in print. The answer is "Edgar Allan Poe wrote on both." [This discovery was attributed to Denis Crutch in "Jabberwocky," Winter 1976.]
Another answer can be found in the Stephen King novel, The Shining: "The higher the fewer, of course! Have another cup of tea!"
Some biographers of Lewis Carroll had another theory based on Carroll's keen interest in the occult. In fact, he was deeply interested in automatic writing, a technique employed by Aleister Crowley, who was into backwards writing as well. Combine that with the idea that the raven is associated with communication between the living and the dead and we have what may be the best answer of all to the question "Why is a raven like a writing desk?"
Answer: A raven is like a writing desk because one might communicate with the dead through either.
Automatic writing as a means of communicating with the dead, could also be interpreted as tapping into the collective unconscious, a concept studied by C.G. Jung.
Yes, it must have been quite a conversation when this meeting took place.
This is Tafultong reporting from the rabbit hole...
the deeper you go the higher you fly
(source http://stason.org/TULARC/education-books/find-books/index.html and numerous other sites)
A couple new videos have surfaced.
Paul is Dead - 1966 from sonofwhom
Who Is Iamaphoney from newcomer LetItBe