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Lethbridge Herald, The (Newspaper) - December 18, 1971, Lethbridge, Alberta Saturday, December 18, 1971 THE LETHBRIDGE HERALD 5 Book reviews Ceylon, island of harmonious beauty "Island Ceylon" Designed and photographed by Roluff Bony; text by John Lindsay Opie; ini-liiilang an anthology of tiic writings on the island and its history; with IDS plates; 72 in color; 26 line illustrations, drawings and maps. (McClelland and Stew- art, TVO one who has seen any one of six previous major books of "photography through the eyes of an artist" needs lo told that Roloff Sony's work is indeed that of a superb mas- ter of the camera as an aesthe- tic instrument. His newest sumptuous production, Island- Ceylon confirms and solidifies his world reputation. Seeking an understanding of the ancient historical and reli- gious influences which have moulded the life of the Sinhalese must have been Mr. Bcny's first task; he, I'm sure, would hardly call it a task. In any case he is fully aware that the time-worn beliefs and tradi- tions, many of which are woven into the warp and woof of the modem Sinhalese tapestry of life, arc based on an inherit- ance almost as old as lime. For it is in Ceylon that Hindu, Bufldhisl, Moslem and Chris- tian have fused in a unique and serene civilization. Us calm splendor speaks from every page of this exquisite book. In his foreward. Rolnff Beny speaks of the sense of exalta- tion he experienced when the spirit of the island took posses- sion of' him. "Of course there is sorrow in he says, "just as there is joy, because there is so much life and there- fore so much more death; hut the overwhelming and haunting quality of the land, the people who cultivate it, and contem- plate its beauty is one of har- mony a rhythm which builds up from the muted or savage music of the waves that wash the coral shores of this islard, rising to a crescendo where the jade-green jungle surrenders to the tapestried slopes of sea and fern. Ceylon is not just a coun- try to visit, it is an island to experience on every sensual and intellectual level, and each traveller will be rewarded ac- cording to what is within his heart, and mind.'' The text for the most parl, particularly in the section which deals with Ceylon before the arrival of the Europeans in the IGth century, is highly erudite, much of it based on the Great Chronicle of the Is- land. Many of the legends taken from it arc given in di- rect translation; other refer- ences to the plates are by John Lindsay Opic who has been re- sponsible for collecting relevant remarks from other great writ- ers of the past and present concerning Ceylon. There can be no question that Mr. Opie knows his subject ultimately he has, in fact, made a spe- ciality of the study of Eastern art and the history of Budd- hism. Perhaps he knows it too well. The explanatory text has an esoteric quality, an aca- demic approach, requiring a careful study that the average reader will be disinclined to en- gage in. It has been niv earnest wish for years that Mr. Beny would undertake to write his own text. He is quite capable indeed more than capable of doing it, and I am sure that it would add to the lustre of his already established reputation. I am incapable of criticizing the artistic merit of the book. All I can report is that ils ef- fect on me, personally, is that it has succeeded in transferring a sense of the physical beauty of an island, a beauty that is a part of the charm and grace of its people. That should be enough to recommend it. And incidentally if one must come down from the pedestal of oriental antiquity to the nitty gritty i.e., dollars and cents it is now possible to buy Mr. Bcny's India rod Is- land-Ceylon at a special for the two" and before Christ- mas at that. JANE HUCKVALE. Guardian lion and elephant at ihe grand staircase and gateway at Ihe Citadel of Yapahuwa. late Thirteenth Century. Reproduced from Roloff Beny's island Ceylon. Unique glimpse into American history "Eleanor and by Joseph P. Lash; the story of their relationship based on Eleanor Roosevelt's pri- vate papers. OV. W. Norton and Company Inc., 765 pages, SU.S5, distributed by McClel- land and Stewart PRANKLIN'S name in the title is a little puzzling, as he remains throughout the book an unsubstantial figure. It is the story of Eleanor. Born to a long-gone world of nineteenth century patricians, the youthful Eleanor is a pathe- Ethical issues in development "The Cruel Choice: A New Concept in the Theory of De- velopment" by Denis Goulet (Atheneum, pages, SM.50, distributed by McClelland and Stewart AjOST discussions of aid pro- grams for the develop- ment of the Third World cen- tre on economic and social is- sues; few probe the ethics in- volved. To fill this gap is the purpose of this substantial study by Denis Goulet, a Fel- low at the Centre for the Study of Development and Social Change in Cambridge, Massa- chusetts. That ethical questions are in- volved to development is soon apparent as one begins to think about it. Is it right to engage in aid giving in order to ad- vance an ideology or protect in- terests? Can aid be given with- out destroying something in the giver as well as the receiver? Should the destruction of cul- tural values be condoned be- cause t h c y aro incompatible with productivity and efficien- cy? These arc some of the questions raised in this book to disturb the easy assumption that aid-giving is a proper and desirable thing. Yet it is no answer for the affluent to terminate aid pro- grams. "Justice declares that those in greatest need have prior claims on world re- sources and on the imaginative energies of men." Mr. Goulet thinks something has to be done to curb unbridled mate- rial desires throughout the world. Desires are insatiable. The illusion that they can be satiated only leads to frustra- tion and trouble. In order to make a start on tackling this problem he suggests the prac- tise of voluntary austerity among the citizens of the rich countries. Staying the contagion of greed in a consumer-oriented society is almost hopeless. The more people have, the more they want. Wants become musts; luxuries become neces- sities; and even the super-rich never have enough. Thus tha author frankly admits the sug- gestion is Utopian. This brings him finally and reluctantly to consider violent revolution. Those who today are perplexed about soma Christians embracing revolu- tion might understand them better (although they might still disagree with them! if they pondered Goulet's chapter on revolution. He argues that "the costs of moderation have been at least as atrocious as those of revolution, perhaps a great deal more so." He also points out that exploitation, repres- sion, coercion {all characteris- tic of underdevelopmcnt) have been condoned by moralists throughout history. His conclu- sion is that "If social justice is truly u n a 11 a i n able except through revolutionary violence, men cannot be morally bound to resort only to futile or inef- ficient non-violent means." In keeping with the serious- ness of the subject, the com- position is such as to make it heavy going for the reader. Il- lustrations that would have made the issues more meaning- ful are largely absent. Yet it is an important study deserving of more attention than it is like- ly to get. DOUG WALKER. tic figure. Orphaned at an early age, she grows to womanhood prim and sslf-righteous, des- perately trying to please and wanting lo be loved. This early section of the book turns into a marathon of in- volved genealogy, juvenile let- ters and pet names that fre- quently keep the reader guess- ing as to the real identity of the persons involved. Eleanor her- self was variously known as Totty, Baby and little Nell. The pace quickens somewhat as Eleanor leaves the school- room and falls in love with de- bonair Franklin. Much to tha surprise of herself and the rest of the family, he also falls in love with her. Link this gay, witty, intelli- gent and somewhat irrespon- sible extrovert to insecure, un- bending, humorless and intelli- gent Eleanor; add Franklin's formidable mother with her firm clutch on the purscstrings, and disaster seems almost in- evitable. Eleanor goes to exceptional lengths to please her husband and her mother-in-law. In her own mind, at least, the mar- riage is successful until her discovery of the romance be- tween Franklin and her secre- tary, Lucy Mercer. In the approved manner of tlie day she offers him his free- dom. He declines. Quite pos- sibly this is because mother threatens to pull the purse- For Gibran devotees Explaining McLuhan "The Kalilil Gibran Diary for 1972" (Alfred A. Knopf, from Random House of Can- ada Limited, "The Medium is the Rear View Mirrfli1" by Donaid Tlieall CMcGill-Queon's Uni- versily Press; 251 pages, pEOPLE who have been bothered by Marshall Mc- Luhan because he won't stand still long enough for them to figure out what he is up to will get along better with Mr. Tlieall. Books in "netting Even" hy Woody (Random House, 151 pages. WUNNYMAN Woody Men offers 17 of his pieces for people who can appreciate, his sense of humor. A few of them, notably Mr. Big. are more, cle- ver than funny. His forlo. secm.s to be lo deal with solemn filings and people with large, clashes of the ridiculous. The. llassidic Tales he lolls once one gets mcr feeling a liltle guilly about holy people being kidded arc vo.rv amui.inp. According lo the flyleaf, all the pieces in this book (all 17 of thorn 1 appeared originally in The New Yorker except I hose specially named which arc about half o[ them. A former pupil of Mc- Luhan's, Theall, unlike his teacher, does not bombard the reader with flashes of insight. He explains things in a ra- tional, sequential manner. This makes him a lot less fun, but more comprehensible. It also makes him much more serious, at least more obviously serious. Much of Mc- Luhan's output has had an ap- pealing sense of fun about it, making it possible to have fun with what he was saying, if one wanted to. With Tlieall, llicre is no op- tion; it is a serious hook and one must approach it with dedication and perseverance. To really move along with Theall as he takes MeLuhan apart, one should have read the books Tlieall has read. Casual references lo the I Ching, the Aphorisms of Yoga, the Pcnsces of Pascal and oth- ers abound. Quite probably the reader who has the equipment needed to really understand what The- all is talking about is able to figure out what McLuhan is talking about without hav- ing lo read Theall. HERB JOHNSON. of Ills homeland and he became known to millions of Arabic- speaking people, who consider- ALTHOUGH diary-k e e k i n g ed him tire genius of his age. ___..... His poetry has been translated lan- and appears to have gone out of fashion these days, this diary will have a special ap- peal to some. It is attractively bound and each page is orna- mented. Its external appear- ance is in harmony with its content. It contains selections from Ihe writings and paintings of Kahlil Gibran. Kahlil Gibran. 1883-1931, poet philosopher and artist, was bom in Lebanon. His fame into more than twenty guages. His drawings paintings have been exhibited in the capitals of the world. He began to write in English in the U.S. where lie lived for the last twenty years of his life. This diary contains enough of his beautiful and Ubcrating thoughts to inspire Ihe wish to get to know more of his works. GERTA PATSON. Pictures of Quebec "Quebec: A Pictorial Rec- ord" edited by Charles de. V o I p i (Longman Canada Ltd.. 13" .us pages, S25I. is 11m sixth of a series of pictorial records depicl ing Ihe Canadian scene as it was before HJfiii. In this Ixiok there ere reproductions of wood, copper and steel engrav- ings, aquatints and lithographs of the City of Quebec and vicin- ity, from'lCOB to 1875. Of interest chiefly from an artistic point, of view, there is also much to attract llw1 histo- rian. Tho historian will lie in- terested not only in Ihe depic- tion of such dramatic events as the deaths of Wolfe and Mont- calm but in buildings, clothing, means of conveyance and Ihe activities shown. H is beyond my competence to comment on Ihe work that has boon selected or even to attempt, lo judge the way it is presented in this book. To me it is simply a magnificent, book in every way. Preceding the plates there is a foreword by the mayor of Quebec, a preface, table of con- tents, notes about the artists and engravers, and an exten- sive chronology of Ihe rily. lloth French mid Knglish lexis arc provided throughout. DOUG WALKER. The Voice Of One -By DR. FRANK 5. MORLEY What is Christmas all about? strings or because divorce may affect his political career. The fact Lucy Mercer is Roman Catholic may also have some- tiling to do with it. This marks the end of the marriage as such, and the reader is left with a sneaky impression that it would have been painfully easy for a very mortal man to succumb to the charms of a softer, more pliant woman. The comment by the younger Roosevelts that in their youth they regarded their mother with respect rather than love adds insight into her character at that time. It must have been rather a depressing existence for all concerned, as Eleanor strove mightily to do her duty and to provide the discipline not forth- coming from her easy-going husband. Eleanor's emotional world is shattered by the rift of her marriage. It is evidentally a period of reassessment for her, and from it she finally emerges as a person in her own right. Her private life now seems sub- merged and she becomes an al- most completely public figure, surrounding herself with an un- believable amount of activity. It is particularly interesting lo watch her mind unfolding at this point. She had long had a somewhat tepid awareness of social problems, but her awakening political compre- hension stows her she can n-.ake an active contribution to the causes she deems impor- tant. She also becomes strong spread beyond the boundaries enough to free herself from tha last ties of racial prejudice. Always a master tactician, now she is no longer striving for Franklin's approval she handles him superbly, while managing to defer to his judg- ment and opinions. Franklin, an equally strong person, has always handled her just as cleverly, though with less con- C'HRISTMAS is a creed, a faith about God and men. Christmas is a creed about the incarnation that God entered human history in Jesus Christ and that Jesus Christ is like Gcd, God loving us, caring for us forgiving us, answering pray- er, in short, God is love which the phil- osopher Whitehead said is the greatest statement in metaphysics. It is the faith in "God with not God far off up there somewhere and you down here, but God present in creation, the Gcd in whom you live and move and have your being, inspiration of the love of your heart and the aspiring thoughts of your nu'nd, the power behind the growth of the world and the purpose in all history. Clirisl- jnas is the word made flesh. In Christmas we know that it is God's will that Ihe hun- gry be fed, the sick healed, the sinful re- deemed, and the enslaved set free, because we have seen these things in Jesus Christ. The philosopher L. P. Jacks, editor of bcrt's Journal, said that if he had one question lo ask the Sphinx it would be, "Is the heart of the universe Christ- mas answers that question with a resound- ing shout, Christinas is a commitment. Writing to the church at Ephesus, Paul prays "That Christ niEiy dwell in your hearts through or "as Weymouth puts it, "I pray that Christ may make his home in your hearts through your faith." The story of the inn, then, is not a tale of long ago but a present day experience. As the hymn puts it "Where meek souls will receive him still the Lord Christ enters in." A Christ who is merely historic has very little value for you and me, no more than any other great historic figure like Soc- rates or Buddha would have. Christmas means commitment to a way of life, "lo following to a life of active charity, a life dedicated to truth. Jesus said tho man must "Abide in and repeatedly Paul says that one must be "In Christ" or "Christ in you, the hope of glory." Writing to the church in Galetia Paul uses a daring expression, "My little children of whom I travail in birth again until Christ be formed in you." Luther had much the same idea in mind when he said that ev- ery man must be a kind of Christ to his fellow men. Sir Wilfred Grenfell tells how he began his great'work as a medical mis- sionary. "Faith came to me with a vi- sion of Christ still alive in this world today, he meant to me a determination, God help- ing, to follow Him." You recall how St. Francis of Assisi in the twelfth century decided to follow Christ so completely that side.ration. Dcalh comes to the president at a resort in Warm Springs, ria. Eleanor is at. the White House. HunMng to Warm Springs, she learns Lucy Mer- cer Rutherford was with Franklin when he died, and that she had also been to the White House when Eleanor her- self had been absent.. She gives no outward sign of hurt or anger at this bitter dis- Is she still in love with him? S'nn says she has nol Iwen since the Lucy Mercer af- fair. But close friend F-Mhor Lape "That was her story. Maylw she even hall believed H. Rut I didn't. 1 dnn't think she ever slopped loving some- one she loved." Joseph I .ash gives the im- pression of writing for the Roosevelt family rather than creating an objective biography. Nevertheless, pcrscrvo.rance is rewarded by a unique glimpse into n fascinating era of Ameri- can hislory. MAUREEN JAJUESON. the very stigmata the wounds of Christ reproduced in lus own flesh. Christmas is a hope, a hope that comes frcm the very heart of the race, long lie- fore the birth of Jesus, and Is expressed in the symbols of Christmas. The carols for example come from the folk songs of the people tolling of an unconquerable joy that burst through all Ihe anguish and pain of life. The mistletoe conies from the Druids, the Greeks, the Norsemen, and the Romans to whom it was so sacred tliat a pact of peace was made under it sealed with a kiss, hence the practice of kissing under the mistletoe. Mistletoe also carries the Norse legend of tlie restoration of life to death. Bells and the evergreen drove out evil spirits. Candles, too, drove out demons and can be traced back to the Norsemen and the Romans. In ancient Rome people gathered green bows, sacred to tire Strenia, Gods of Health, and cel- ebrated Saturnalia with gifts to friends and to the poor. From Persia and Egypt came the feast day of Mithraism on December 25Ui celebration of Uie birth of tire Un- conquered Sun. Tlie Babylonians cel- ebrated twelve days during which the King did penance and at the end received back his crown from the guard Mnrduk. Holly carries the ancient Druid faith in undying life. The ancient historian, Bcde, says "The ancient people of the Angll began the year on December 25, when we now celebrate the birthday of the Lord; and the very night which is now so holy lo us, they call- ed in their tongue Modranecht (mother's Thus Christmas is the affirma- tion of an unconquerable hope of tlie hu- man heart as old as life itself, the hope of eternal life, a hope of a tetter kindlier life, a hope of rising above the cruel, animal nature of man into joy and loveli- ness. Thus Christmas is a spirit. At no time of tire year is it so easy to collect money for good causes as during Christmas which surely must be because men's hearts ars kinder, less selfish, touched with that mes- sage of Peace on Earlh, Goodwill to Men. Christmas is a merry time when it is hard to hate and easier to forgive, when laught- er comes more lightly to the lips and the genial spirit to the heart. This is a very cruel world and one can retreat inio the root of selfishness, a life of sensuality or cynicism, or can believe that over the stars and the universes there is an in- finite power of goodness, an over world of transcendent glory, light and love, that man can have communion and conversation with the infinite Spirit and that a divine destiny awaits him. This or else By F. Albert Rndd MANKIND must devise a new way to minated to date in the most recent, con- 1H