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19226RE: [mythsoc] Re: Mystical Realms Newsletter for December, 2007

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  • Mike Foster
    Dec 8, 2007
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      John Peterson of the American Chesterton Society writes:
      "Arthur C. Clarke: "Laws of "Prediction":
      1. When a distinguished but elderly scientist states that something
      is possible, he is almost certainly right. When he states that something
      is impossible, he is very probably wrong.
      2. The only way of discovering the limits of the possible is to
      venture a little way past them into the impossible.
      3. Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from
      magic.

      P.S. I don't believe the word "technology" was in Chesterton's active
      vocabulary."


      -----Original Message-----
      From: mythsoc@yahoogroups.com [mailto:mythsoc@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf
      Of Margaret Dean
      Sent: Friday, December 07, 2007 8:18 AM
      To: mythsoc@yahoogroups.com
      Subject: Re: [mythsoc] Re: Mystical Realms Newsletter for December, 2007

      Jef Murray wrote:

      > W.r.t. your second point, about why an evil spell
      > would be in a "good" wizard's book, I'm reminded of
      > the oft-heard comment that technology is
      > neutral...that is, it can be used for good or evil,
      > but that it, by itself, is neither (pace, Tolkien!).

      In the end, technology of any kind serves to extend human
      faculties in some way (or rather, those of its builders; so far
      the human species is the one we know to make extensive and varied
      use of technology, though there are tool-using animals). I think
      Tolkien would agree that evil resides in the human part of the
      equation.

      > And I expect the same applies to a spellbook (was it
      > Tolkien, or Chesterton, who claimed that a
      > sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable
      > from magic?).

      Neither; that was Arthur C. Clarke (In fact, that's "Clarke's
      Third Law").

      --Margaret Dean
      <margdean@erols. <mailto:margdean%40erols.com> com>



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