Authors, Novelists, Norm Green, Norman Green, Shooting Dr Jack, Angel of Montague Street, Edgar Award, Shamus Award, Brian DeFiore, Mystery Writers of America, Brooklyn, Alexandra Martillo,Tommy Bagadonuts, American Writers

Life is simple

Recently I read ‘Life Is Simple,’ by John Joe McFadden. It is subtitled ‘How Occam’s Razor set science free and shapes the universe.’ I know, it sounds like a thrill a minute. Actually, it is one of the best and most interesting things I have read in some time. It turns out that there really was a William of Occam, who was a 14th century English friar. He was also an uncompromising and distinctly hard-headed genius who, essentially, reignited science after a millennium or so of unrelenting plague, superstition and ignorance. Here’s one of the new things I learned: there actually was a serious debate among churchmen about whether or not Jesus had a purse. I swear I am not making this up. If he did, you see, then he obviously must have passed it on to Peter before he died, which would legitimize the whole business of the church being hideously wealthy while ordinary people starved. God gave it to us, we’re keeping it. Conversely, if Jesus really had been penniless, if he owned nothing, then all the monks, clerics, bishops, nuns, popes, tv preachers and other assorted crackpots needed to give away all their earthly goods and commence a spiritual life as paupers and mendicants, which I think would be an awesome idea. Three guesses which side of that debate the powers that be came down on. People died over this. William of Occam was very nearly one of them.

It seems to me that we are now in danger of entering a second dark age, where people who can read and presumably think for themselves choose not to, and instead swallow whole cloth the bullshit being shoveled at them by The Network That Must Not Be Named, and the debate over the existence of Jesus’ purse actually doesn’t sound much stupider than the one about whether or not to get immunized against a virus that has, so far, claimed something north of six million lives.

If you like reading, and thinking, I recommend McFadden’s book without reservation. I found it fascinating from start to finish.

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