A beautifully told story with colorful characters out of epic tradition, a tight and complex plot, and solid pacing. -- Booklist, starred review of On the Razor's Edge

Great writing, vivid scenarios, and thoughtful commentary ... the stories will linger after the last page is turned. -- Publisher's Weekly, on Captive Dreams

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Mystery Solved

Ever wonder why Natural Science as we know it arose nowhere else in the world save Christendom?

Since their Grandmother Stone was removed to Germany, the
Pemon tribal area of Venezuela has suffered drought, pesti-
lence and a 1999 mudslide that killed 20,000.  Coincidence?
Wonder no more
"But to the indigenous Pemon Indians, apparently, its loss has caused disaster. In local culture the rock is called "Grandmother Kueka", and legend has it that it forms one half of romantic couple, turned to stone for an illicit love affair. The legend also maintains that if the grandmother stone is separated from the grandfather stone then disaster will strike.

Melchor Flores, a Pemon activist, told Venezuelan television. 'They took advantage of that to walk over our culture and wisdom, because wisdom comes from our ancestors.'"
TOF loves that "apparently" in the first quoted paragraph. 


  1. What gets me is that the article mentions that a good proportion of the tribe either didn't know about the story, or actually thought it silly! Which makes me wonder for whom are the activists meant to be speaking?

    1. What makes this story any more outlandish than the story that men work, wear clothes and women suffer birth pains because of a curse?

    2. We could start with the direct idolatrous personification of a particular set of rocks, moving then to how their removal is shored up as bad juju and eventually tied to particular catastrophes. These are rocks, mind you, and a particular set.

  2. @Ubiquitous

    For the sake of argument,

    The bible records a set of rocks that were set up as darn near idolatrous personification and the removal of those rocks were shored up as bad juju tied to particular catastrophes. They were just rocks, and darned heavy to carry around in the desert for 40 years.

  3. ...Our unverifiable superstitions can whup your unverifiable superstitions! Also, we have gunpowder.

  4. Things are done differently in Australia, where juju is attached to whatever rock is taken. This clearly is a smart move, as juju is exported rather than left behind, and rock returns are assured.

    There is growing speculation, however, that Germany's foot-dragging, re providing economic support to less fortunate members of the EU, has less to do with a reluctance to aid those who refuse to help themselves via the implementation of called-for austerity measures, and more to do with an exercising of fiscal responsibility by quietly setting aside reserves for future postage expense.


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