My Book: The Awful Deed is Done

This is not a Christmas post, as it should be, but now I’m almost finished with an arduous project that has consumed untold hours and years of my life for no other reason than the simple fact that I wanted to answer an age-old and really rather incorrigible question tackled by some of the greatest minds — far greater than mine — down through the annals of history. The result is a book wrestling with the question of just what it means to be human, and now I realize, all too late, how foolish I was to begin this venture.

Once I began this journey, though, I could hardly give up on it without discovering what might lay ahead. And I can honestly say I’ve learned a good bit, so not all has been lost. And I’ve even managed to come to at least a partial answer for myself, so I suppose this is good, too. When I started I allowed myself to imagine the finished product would be something of interest, and even benefit, to others, but I now have grave doubts. Besides, for those who are interested in the same very ancient and very basic question of what it means to be human, perhaps it is better for them to make their own journey anyway.

I say this because for me the journey in and of itself has been as much a part of my conclusion as the bits and pieces of answers I picked up along the way. This is probably true of most ventures, really. You kind of tend to grow into whatever it is you’re after, or think you’re after, which may, of course, change over the course of the journey. Actually, this happens more often than not, and this is good. One would expect, for example, that if your goal is to become a better cook, then you actually grow into a better cook in and through the adventure of cooking, which can be rather hilarious at first, than you do by simply sitting and imagining what it means to be a good cook.

So does this mean I’ve become more human? Or even a better human? I would like to think so, but to tell the truth, I’m still digesting my own conclusions to the matter. At any rate, when I am finally completely finished, I will likely have it all printed up with a nice, glossy paperback cover — or, who knows, maybe even hardback! — then place it on one of my bookshelves next to truly great works, if I be so bold, all so I can look every once in awhile and see my name on the spine next to an important sounding title, maybe like, On Being Human: A Multi-Discipline Journey of Discovery. Yes, that’ll probably do!

And, hey, everyone needs an ego boost every now and then! Who knows but my children might be impressed … especially if they don’t actually read it! And it might provide a conversation piece with visitors, who will also never read it, and they may leave my humble dwelling with a slightly higher, though unwarranted, view of me. This, too, never really hurts anything, unless you let it go to your head. I’m not likely to do this precisely because I’ve read the damn thing too many times already. I know the texture, flow and content all too well. 

I don’t mean to sound too self-deprecating. I actually do like my conclusion. Perhaps I should just publish that in, say, small booklet form. The problem is, it might land in the hands of some far wiser individual, which means almost anyone, who would then question how it is I made it from point A to point Z. To answer this would, of course, require all the previous material, and I know s/he would not want to be so burdened, especially when s/he would do much better to simply read Plato and Aristotle, which is, by and by, almost always the case when you get into philosophical matters. Begin with Plato and Aristotle, then if you need to go further, stick closely with those who stuck closely with them. The rest has been (mostly) drivel.

At any rate, as I said, it is done. The awful, years-long deed it finished. Now, perhaps, I can return to what I do much better, for I am not a philosopher or theologian, an anthropologist or psychologist, scientist or mystic, no. In the end, I’m an ordinary man, who should never have approached such a daunting question to begin with, but now … now I can return to my love of reading and writing poetry, offering an occasional commentary on some current event, even penning a short story every so often, as well as continuing to enrich the dear relationships in my life, carrying on with my daily chores, and nurturing my over-active imagination at night when I lay my tired head to rest.

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20 thoughts on “My Book: The Awful Deed is Done

  1. Congratulations, Jonathan. You’ve completed your book. How wonderful! Yes, please publish it in hard cover and put it on your bookshelf next to some great books. I consider making my book in hard cover and probably I’m the only one buying a couple copies – one for me, one for my granddaughter (my daughter asked me to give it to her). I can put it on the bookshelf next to my dissertation which is also a hardcover book. I didn’t know what I was doing when I wrote the dissertation.

    Are you sending the manuscript to a publisher? What is your next step?

    1. Actually, a few years ago I used an on-demand publishing company to publish a few booklets of mine ~ a couple of collections of poetry, some stories, and whatnot ~ and they did an excellent job at a very reasonable cost. The name of the company is Lulu.com. Of course, to keep the cost down, I have to do all the formatting, but that’s really no problem. So I think I’m going to do that: I’m going to finish making the revisions I need to make, then format, then send it off to Lulu! And the more I think about it, I believe will make it a hardback! 🙂 Thank you so much for your kind words and all of your encouragement. You always life my spirits!

      1. You’re very welcome, Jonathan. I always feel like talk to a friend when I talk with you. I’ll check out Lulu.com for any future reference. Do they do eBook? I want to stay with Amazon for a while. I use Kindle Create to format the poetry book. But the limitation is that it can’t be downloaded and I was told to download from KDP to MOBI file. I need the MOBI file in case I need to email people a copy of my book as a prize or gift. If I upload the Word Doc to KDP, then it can be downloaded to MOBI. Anyway, I don’t know if KDP has hard cover option for me. I’ll see.
        I’m happy for you. Think about donating your book to the libraries also! I’ll look into it. Isn’t it fantastic if your book is in the public library? 🙂

        1. Ah, Miriam! You’re too kind… In the library? Wow, it never occurred to me. Thank you! Oh, and yes, Lulu does eBook. I have never done an eBook, but I do no they even have step-by-step guides and free tools to use in creating one. Blessings to you and yours!

  2. Jonathan,
    I look forward to reading your book when you publish it. I did read several others. Agree with what you stated about practice making perfect. Someone close to me used the example of writing rather than cooking to make the same point: “If you want to be a writer write.” And you certainly are a writer old friend. I thought that what you’d written so many years ago was a lot, but you’ve obviously committed so much time and energy to your discipline that there is nothing else to say but that you are a writer – and, in my opinion a good one with much to say. Whether or not you get 100 percent agreement isn’t the point. It is how well do you say what you want to say.

    It is a good subject you taken, and I guess that with the terminology “worldview” in vogue now, that is really what we are talking about when it comes down to political matters and our place and our country’s place in this world. What our ancestors gave us is predicated upon what informed or motivated their worldview. I personally don’t believe that their worldview was predicated upon naturalism or random collocations of atoms, but was rather informed by their belief in objective truth.

    Still, the debate will continue. And one thing is sure, to me: regardless of one’s own view there are other views are radically extreme that gain currency daily. There is almost an impulsive drive to de-legitimize truth itself (which, of course, is what we all search for with books like yours). I guess they call it post-modernism. Now, much study is given to consciousness and what it is.

    What it is, I’m afraid, is quite possibly one Huckleberry beyond my persimmon, as the saying goes. For me, an informed faith may just be the best thing.

    No doubt your kids – and all who know you – are already proud of you and your efforts to overcome challenges. Hope all continues well with you. God Bless and drop me a line sometime.

    HS

    1. Thank you so very much, my old and dear friend. I cannot begin to express in words what your affirmation and encouragement means to me. To wake up this morning and read your comment before anything else is truly an unsuspected and much, deeply appreciated blessing.
      I, too, do not believe our ancestor’s “worldview was predicated upon naturalism or random collocations of atoms,” at least not for the most part. You are right to say their worldview was built upon what they at least perceived to be truth. Certainly, they believed in objective truth.
      You make the observation, too, that much study has been given of late to the subject of consciousness. Funny you should mention this. In the beginning of this “noble” venture of mine, I focused on this very subject. Not being familiar with all of the wildly disparate perspective on what seemed to me to be a fairly straightforward subject, the further I delved into what is currently one of the most hotly debated topics, the more I found myself sinking into a kind of Bunyanesque Slough of Despondency. Eventually, I largely extricated myself, at least from the more extreme (and idiotic) perspectives. So the subject of consciousness is certainly addressed in my work, but in the end I felt no obligation whatsoever to review in any great detail the positions of, say, Daniel Dennett or Susan Blackmore, who argues in one of her books on the subject that there is simply no such thing ~ no one “at home” having “any of these experiences at all.” Absurd and completely asinine, of course! Well, I do mention her passingly and then briefly refute the nonsense…
      At any rate, my journey eventually led me to realize that, though consciousness (or awareness, which I prefer) is certainly an important ingredient of what it means to be human, it certainly does not even begin to tell the whole story… There is so much more!
      Again, thank you! And may God bless you richly, especially this very sacred time of year!

  3. Wow Jonathan I too am looking forward to reading your amazing book on a multi dimensional journey. So nice to hear that you have published so many books and congratulations. All the very best. A beautiful and encouraging read.

  4. This is a great accomplishment. I will admit that I struggle with the question of being human quite often. I feel that its a question that remains more subjective than truly conclusive. I look forward to reading it.

    1. Ah! It’s so good to know I’m not the only one in our day and time to ask this question. Thank you! And you’re right, I believe, it does remain rather subjective. Blessings to you and yours!

  5. This is wonderful news, Jonathan! Many congratulations to you! I look forward to the link for the published piece. And let me also wish you compliments of the season and the best for 2019!

  6. Oh wow, what an achievement! And a lovely surprise too; you’ve kept mum about this project. I look forward to the publication of (and reading) this thought-provoking and relevant book. The subject matter is of great interest. It’s a question most of us ask ourselves a lot. I’d certainly like to hear your take on this philosophical and highly subjective matter. And the title, On Being Human: A Multi-Discipline Journey of Discovery, entices. Congrats, my friend! I’ll keep my eyes peeled for the release.

    p.s. I logged on the blogs to look for your contact details because you came to mind as someone I can ask for a favour as I’m busy finalizing a very small and insignificant collection of poems. But after reading about your current and important project, I’m rather intimidated to ask.😀 But perhaps, if I have your contact details (I couldn’t find the Contact Page on your site) I might take the plunge and ask.

    1. Oh my! Thank you so much for your very, very encouraging and uplifting words! And of course I’d be most honored to help you with your own project! I don’t know why my contact information is not showing ~ I’ll have to set that straight ~ but my email address is jdnoble3@gmail.com And, of course, I’m on Facebook, if that makes any difference. I think this link will get you to my FB page: https://www.facebook.com/jdnoble3 If not, I’m Jonathan Noble from Dothan, Alabama, USA. Well, anyway, I do hope to hear from you via email… I’m very excited that you’ve decided to collect together some of your wonderful poetry, and dearly look forward to reading more of the same! God bless!

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