A book of quotations by curmudgeons on a variety of topics. Some sparkle with brilliance, some with humor. A few are malicious, even nasty. Many are kA book of quotations by curmudgeons on a variety of topics. Some sparkle with brilliance, some with humor. A few are malicious, even nasty. Many are keepers worthy of your notebooks.
This book resembles Ambrose Bierce’s “Devil’s Dictionary” but is derived from a variety of authors, not just one. They range from Voltaire and Oscar Wilde to Woody Allen and Johnny Carson. From Ben Jonson to Al Capp, arranged alphabetically by subject matter.
Included are interesting short bios of prominent world-class curmudgeons. They were a neurotic bunch, but brazenly outspoken. Their zany antics are amusing to read about.
It is not necessary to hate mankind to enjoy this book, but it would help. There is something here to please everyone except Pollyannas, to whom it is not recommended. But if you are in a sour mood or lean toward the cynical or pessimistic, you can’t go wrong with this one. ...more
This is a pamphlet that can be read cover to cover in twenty minutes. It is muddled and contradictory. It says that salt is “by far the most dangerousThis is a pamphlet that can be read cover to cover in twenty minutes. It is muddled and contradictory. It says that salt is “by far the most dangerous substance that we consume.” Then it recommends, “Try to get the salt that has been certified kosher.” It says repeatedly that salt is dangerous, without explaining why. It links “excessive” salt to various diseases, but does not explain its cause and effect linkage. It advises readers to “regulate” their salt rather than to eliminate it, and to use the recommended kind of salt—kosher sea salt. The author admits that he uses salt, but says his goal “is to be 100% salt free in a few months.” Why not now?
Missing is the concept of bio-availability, the real reason why salt is harmful. Missing is the outright condemnation of dietary salt as indigestible, inorganic, rock crystals. This means all kinds of salt, including the kosher sea salt that the author recommends. This means salt in any quantity. He asks, why is salt dangerous? And answers, “Because we eat so much of it.” But he misses the point. Quantity is not the whole problem. He advises readers to “stay within the safety limits,” as if there are safety limits for something indigestible. Why eat it at all?
He makes some good points. That salt contains “no health benefit.” That the minerals in salt are found in natural foods. But fails to explain the reasons why salt is unnecessary and harmful. He says, “sodium chloride is necessary, not salt.” Right! We need sodium and chloride from organic sources, not inorganic salt. But then he says that sea salt has more minerals than table salt, without pointing out that those additional minerals are not in an organic form that can do the body any good. His best advice is to avoid restaurants and processed foods, but I already knew to do these. The only thing new to me in this booklet is that there is such a thing as “kosher” salt.
This pamphlet is repetitious and padded, as it does not contain enough material to develop its theme. A superficial discussion that stops short of the truth about salt. I don’t know of a book to recommend on this topic, but see a chapter in Herbert M. Shelton’s book “Food and Feeding,” the chapter titled “Condiments.” It contains more substance than this booklet.
This is the memoir of a Baptist missionary in nineteenth century Missouri and Illinois, plus extensive biographical commentaries by editor Rufus Babc This is the memoir of a Baptist missionary in nineteenth century Missouri and Illinois, plus extensive biographical commentaries by editor Rufus Babcock. Of interest to Baptists, but also a primary source of American history. People and places are described, usually in religious or moral terms. The first few chapters are about his youth and preparations in Connecticut, New York, and Pennsylvania.
Arriving in Missouri in 1817, John Mason Peck witnessed and experienced frontier American history over several decades, from the point of view of an itinerant preacher. His memoir is mostly about church business: where he went and what he did in spreading the gospel. The people he met, the churches and seminaries he founded. The Bible study societies he started, sermons he preached, periodicals he published, books he wrote. Theological issues among Baptists. His attempts to evangelize the West wherever it was “destitute” of piety or religious instruction.
Peck’s travels took him as far south as New Orleans and as far east as Massachusetts, from his base in Illinois. Some of the people he met on his travels: John Adams, Daniel Boone, Andrew Jackson, Charles Dickens.
Three stars for the up-close and personal history. Add two stars if you are interested in the Baptist church and its history.
Hard to rate this one. The diary of a shallow person, but worth reading for the insights it gives into Hitler's psyche. She complains of being lonelyHard to rate this one. The diary of a shallow person, but worth reading for the insights it gives into Hitler's psyche. She complains of being lonely and wishes she had a puppy. ...more
This book may interest Scots in the regions described, the Scottish Highlands of Perthshire, especially the Atholl and Breadalbane areas. It is mostlyThis book may interest Scots in the regions described, the Scottish Highlands of Perthshire, especially the Atholl and Breadalbane areas. It is mostly descriptions of the scenery and details about day trips, lodgings, and the local titled rich people who hosted the queen’s party. There is some local history and some insights into the royal family.
The first two chapters are about her journeys in 1842 and 1844, with Prince Albert. The others are later, in the 1860s, when she was a grieving widow reliving the past. There are excerpts from the diaries and letters of the queen, but most of the text is commentary by editor John Kerr. There is not much here that would interest a general audience. ...more
This is a book of evidence for and against the use of refined table salt. It tries to be impartial, but the evidence is overwhelmingly against. The auThis is a book of evidence for and against the use of refined table salt. It tries to be impartial, but the evidence is overwhelmingly against. The author advises the reader to forego the use of refined salt.
But then he praises the use of unrefined salt. He calls sea salt a “natural organic form” of salt, valuable for its trace minerals. Yes it is natural, but is it organic? Not at all! According to the dictionary definition, “organic” means “derived from living matter.” Sea salt is not derived from living matter. It is as inorganic as any other kind of salt. Thus its trace minerals are inorganic and unavailable to the human body. As such, they can do no good.
Tobe does not seem to understand the difference between salt and sodium—the bio-available sodium found in natural foods. He is not clear on the concept of bio-availability. Trace minerals need to be in organic form to be available to the body. They need to be from living matter, plants or animals. Salt, including sea salt, is inorganic matter foreign to the body. He blames commercial processing for the harm that salt does, but the real fault is in its inorganic nature.
In two chapters he discusses evidence linking salt to various diseases: cancer, heart disease, hypertension, circulatory disorders, dropsy, kidney disease, etc. The evidence is substantial, more than anecdotal. In another chapter he discusses salt licks, concluding that they do not exist in nature.
He includes a chapter about medicinal uses of salt, but admits that some may be only folklore. Salt is useful as an antiseptic, de-worming agent, emetic, due to its toxicity to living things. Salt is used as an insecticide because it is toxic to insects. And as a food preservative because it is toxic to bacteria that cause spoilage.
Half of this book consists of salt-free recipes, but eliminating salt from one’s diet is not so complicated as to require recipes. The way to eliminate salt is to eliminate it. It is as simple as that, though for some people it may require will power. The recipes are for salt addicts in transition.
This booklet is intended for men who want to avoid prostate surgery. It offers self-treatment measures to prevent and relieve congestion and resultingThis booklet is intended for men who want to avoid prostate surgery. It offers self-treatment measures to prevent and relieve congestion and resulting enlargement before they can cause serious problems. Prostate hypertrophy can be a circulatory problem, says the author, caused by varicosities in the prostate, which clog, causing congestion and toxemia. Urinary problems can be caused by deformation of the bladder from sagging abdominal organs. Prescribed are fasting and dietary reforms, hot and cold water therapies, enemas, and postural adjustments. The program requires discipline and lifestyle changes, but the author claims it can render prostate surgery unnecessary.
This booklet is more about prevention than cure, but does discuss some remedial measures. It makes no mention of prostate cancer. ...more
Herbert M. Shelton wrote his best books during his mature years, after 1940. The second edition of this book dates from 1978, so the reader gets the bHerbert M. Shelton wrote his best books during his mature years, after 1940. The second edition of this book dates from 1978, so the reader gets the benefit of his decades of experience supervising tens of thousands of fasters.
He covers all the obvious angles: why to fast, where and when to fast, what to expect during a fast, when and how to break a fast. The safety of fasting. Who should fast? Should children fast? Should underweight people fast? Should pregnant women fast? The difference between hunger and appetite. Then, in separate chapters, he discusses various acute and chronic conditions that can be resolved by fasting: from arthritis and asthma to gallstones and tumors. From hay fever to heart disease, and others.
There is no more reliable source of advice on fasting than Herbert M. Shelton. He makes sense, basing his arguments on logic and sound science, not on mere testimonials. Whether his pro-fasting stance amounts to bias is arguable, but he knew fasting as few people have. Recommended. ...more
I have an undated edition of this booklet and don't know if it has since been updated. It describes events that happened in the 1940s. I don't agree wI have an undated edition of this booklet and don't know if it has since been updated. It describes events that happened in the 1940s. I don't agree with everything in it. She recommends long hours of sun bathing, four to five hours per day, a dangerous idea in these days of ozone depletion and melanoma. Maybe it was not as harmful in Denmark, where she practiced, or early and late in the day. She claims that "our patients are fortified by their diet against the more intense rays of the sun." How many dermatologists would agree?
Her use of milk, potatoes, and dried grains, even in their raw states, is questionable in cancer. The casein in cows’ milk is contra-indicated, according to some modern sources, because it promotes rapid cell growth. Cows’ milk is for unweaned calves, not intended for humans. She praises garlic, calling it a miracle food, which it is not. The Natural Hygiene school calls it a toxic irritant, and it is that for me. She admits that garlic kills or inhibits “practically all bacteria” and thinks that is a good thing. Her whole chapter about garlic is misinformation. And there is more misinformation about fasting and the nature of colds. She warns against fasting, claiming that the body cannot detoxify itself “without the aid of vitamins and mineral salts.” Colds are not to be allowed to run their courses; instead they are to be stopped by garlic.
She makes some interesting observations about cancer, and her regimen has much to recommend it, but this small booklet is mostly argument and testimonial. She claims that she had a large malignant tumor that diminished in size and was "converted into the most benign form in existence." If true, she must have been doing something right, and this booklet does tell you what she did and did not do. She claims her tumor gradually diminished on a 100% raw diet, then began to grow again when she re-introduced some cooked foods. 100% raw was essential to her program. I have been unable to follow up on her to determine how long she lived after her alleged remission. But considering the many mistakes she made, her results, if valid, testify to the potency of the raw food diet.
These are the recollections of a Russian emigre in France, on a mission to heal the rift between the Catholic and Orthodox Christian churches. A conveThese are the recollections of a Russian emigre in France, on a mission to heal the rift between the Catholic and Orthodox Christian churches. A convert to the Catholic faith, she tries to reconcile her Orthodox friends by emphasizing their common roots and beliefs. She draws on the teachings of her philosopher friends Jacques Maritain, a Catholic, and Nicholas Berdiaeff, an Orthodox, both of whom had abandoned materialism and socialism in favor of spiritual values and Christian humanism. They all believed in personalism, the primacy of the person over the state. She calls for Christian humanism, citing the papal encyclicals of Leo XIII and Pius XI. She describes in detail the French spiritual and social movements in which she was involved, including youth groups such as Emmanuel Mounier’s “Esprit.”
Communism and Nazism were threatening France. The title of this book refers to the approaching “dusk of civilization” represented by those totalitarian forces. She condemns them both as materialistic and inimical to human freedom. Christians must be independent, not forced to choose between what Maritain called “the right complex” and “the left complex.” “France could be saved only by a complete renovation, not only economic, but moral and spiritual.” She calls for “a spiritual wall against totalitarian influences,” a genuine spiritual revolution. Three chapters describe the difficulties of living in France under German control, even in the so-called free zone. She fled to America in 1941 because she could not do her work under Nazi domination.
The author assumes that the reader knows something about events in France in those days, but she was a gifted writer and this is an easy read for anyone at all familiar with the subject matter. Recommended to readers interested in religion and spirituality, ecumenism, Christian humanism, and French history and philosophy during the 1930s.