Thursday, July 30, 2020

The Fool on the Hill

Son of night and darkness, fraternal twin of misery, Momus is the Greek god of blame, mockery, and satire. Momus was THE fool of THE hill, that is to say the comic thorn in the sides of the gods and goddesses of Mount Olympus. Momus first proved Athena goddess of wisdom wasn't half of clever as she thought she was.  He proceeded to praise the perfection of Aphrodite...less her creaky sandals and the fact that she talked too much. It was all good for a laugh so long as you weren't the butt of his mockery. However, nobody laughed when Momus openly ridicules the mighty Zeus for his many infidelities. Wrath incurred, Zeus tosses Momus from heaven, according to some accounts binding him to a rock for castration by the offended goddesses.

During the Medieval period, Momus became the model for the court jester. Outfitted in absurd regalia, the jester served a vital role as the conscience and moral mirror of the King. No matter the circumstance, one could count on the jester to tell the King the truth. When the censure of the jester was silenced by the censorship of the Sovereign you knew that the kingdom had succumb to tyranny. In a similar fashion, Renaissance and later writers such as Leon Battista Alberti and Thomas Wood employed the voice of Momus to express controversial criticisms of the church and secular authorities of their day. Below for your reading pleasure are a few aphorisms attributed to Momus, the Greek god of satire.

"Beauty and pain are in the eye of the beholder. Trust not your senses, for neither your joys nor your sufferings are real...and neither are you!" - The Scepticism of Momus

"the numbers aren't adding up..." - Momus Opines

  "A promise is a comfort to a fool.” - The Wisdom of Momus

“The 1st world aspiration for a global market has made its unholy alliance with the 2nd world craving for the total centralisation of authority whilst a 3rd world of autonomy and self-reliance fades from memory...Cheerio and Toodlepip!” - Momus on the 1.5 World

"Heraclitus once said 'panta rhei'; 'everything flows' or as I like to say, 'life is living'. That's not good advice, that's reality. Whether or not you get with living is up to you." - Momus on Living

“Light thy neighbour as thyself. Remember children it takes but a single flame to set the world alight!” - Momus' Brilliance

"I imagine there will a melancholic reflection at the twilight of our species upon our capacity to extract resources to depletion, to subject human will to algorithmic determination, to decimate the capacity for organic life on land, sea, and last chance to revel in our freedom from tradition and superiority over our ignorant forefathers before the lights go dim forever."

"This life will be the death of us!" - Proverb of Momus

“Rhetoric without dialectic is a mere tool of the appetites!” - A Toast of Momus

"So you say life is a grinding tyranny, everything must be overturned, you can't imagine anything worse than it is now. friends, I’d say you lack imagination." - Momus the Fool

“What is the present moment but a memory of a past consciousness? Of even that I’m quite appears I’m fading from existence continually, dying again and again.” - The Waking Dream of Momus

“Please don’t tear me down, I’m just a symptom! Statues come from ideas, ideas come from people, you people are thus the disease. You need to focus on the cure: When will you start tearing apart people?!” - The Logic of Momus

"Time for a cleansing sweep! There must be no price we won't pay to eliminate oppression! No sacrifice we won't make to terminate supremacy! Better to have no society at all than one where even an atom of hate remains alive!!" - Momus' Commitment


"The time for patience has run it's course, this suffering must end now. There is no place for racism, misogyny, and oppression in a free society of diversity, inclusion, and equity. Hatred must be met with the ultimate penalty. There is only hate and anti-hate!!" - Commitment of Momus

"The more skilled I've become in my art, the less interested others are in what I've to offer. The clearer I'm able to articulate that, the more inclined they are to turn a deaf ear." - The Slow Death of Momus 

“It’s not so much that the modern world will be held to account for its proliferation of hate, destruction, and ugliness; rather, modernity itself is already that punishment upon a generation that has defiled art, rejected culture, and despoiled nature...that have profaned any and everything honest, beautiful and sacred in this life.” - The Lamentation of Momus

"Failure that it is in oh so many ways, my life is not yet so wretched that I'm quite prepared to surrender it to something greater than myself. Who's the fool?" - Momus in his Cups

“There’s a certain purity of blackness of that heart which’ll brook no delusions of a better world, that alights the fire for the sake of blood, and pain...that will destroy itself with the clear vision that it’s all for nothing.” - The Madness of Momus
"Activists of the world, unite! You have nothing to lose but your minds!" - Momus’ Manifesto
“Now gentlemen, one must remember the first and absolutely most important thing to be done when confronted with an insoluble crisis is to establish blame.” - The Counsel of Momus 

“Unlike you my little friend, it would appear that man is not a domesticable animal.” - Musings of Momus
"Oh sugar, don't y'all know there's no such thing as a naked grab for power! We like to put on our high heels and lofty ideals before we paint the town red with the blood of the dead." - Masquerade of Momus 

“I imagined a world with no possessions, nothing to live or die for…I fear it may almost be here” – The Fool on the Hill
“Beware of Section 4!” - Momus’ Warning
"Safe? You're not safe. At best you've never had anything but the false illusion of safety." - Momus stating the Obvious
 "Surveillance is Safety. A chip for every citizen. A drone for very household. That's my promise to you." - Momus 2020
"Truth? Logic? Reason? The day of revolution is coming when one will have to decide whether to be on the 'right side of history' or just dead right." - Alas, poor Momus
"Beware the expert convincing you of a certain harm with the promise of an uncertain benefit." - Momus told you so
“In my experience ‘no means no’ often means maybe, sometimes even probably...” - Momus on apples
"Peace, peace, peace, shanti, shanti, shanti...unless of course they hold the wrong opinion, i.e. the one that conflicts with your own." - The Onefold Path of Momus
“Justice? One for, two, three for me. God damn, if that ain’t the oldest trick in the book!” - Momus knows what’s up their sleeve
No Piece for Just Us  
“People tell the truth more often than we give them credit for. When folks tell you who they are over, and over, and over again you might consider believing them.” - Momus looking out for Momus
“There are few burdens in this life that are not felt a wee bit lighter after a kettle of tea.” - Momus takes
honey and a spot of cream
“What is truth for most of us but belief in the words of an authority figure in which we surrender our trust.” - Momus’ Commitment Issues 

“One never truly gets away with anything. In the final accounting, your life amounts to the sum total of the poor decisions you’ve made.” - Momus not playing with a full deck

The concept of a ‘social construct’ is by definition itself a social construct.” - Momus’ reality check

“Zoom not doom. Isolation is salvation. Remember, virtual life is the virtuous life! - Momus 2.0
“The imminent threat of the stick makes the alternative of the carrot all the more alluring.” - What’s up Momus?
"Fools to my left prattle on about equality while jokers to my right clamour incessantly for freedom; I'd be hard pressed to think of two things more confessedly absurd, more contrary to the laws of nature than Equality and Freedom!" - Momus has an headache

“No need for despair...there’s a stick for every hole.” - Momus Snookers
“Sing it with me now:

‘D’ means: di-ver-si-ty
Long as: you-look-like-me

‘I’ is for: in-clu-sion
Pick and choose: who-you-shun

‘E’ gives us: e-qui-ty
Get what’s mine: i’ll-be-free

Together we can

Lets all just

The ballad of Momus
“Fear is the power before which every knee must bend. She has compelled you to believe anyone and made you accept anything.” - Momus says the joke’s on you
"Is race 'real'?  If by real you mean a widely held, persistent, self-propagating, social construct claiming that the most significant and meaningful differences among human beings must be superficial physiological ones...well in that case, sure why not.  Race must be just as real as any other pathological delusion you suffer from." - Momus in denial
“Never repress your feelings. The case could be made that suppressing one’s actions and speech is part of being a social creature. And in practical terms we obviously can’t choke to death absolutely everyone that irritates us. That’s alright though, we have imagination for that!” - Momus gets creative

“Anyone who thinks marriage is ‘just a piece of paper’ has obviously overlooked the fine print.” - Momus gets hitched
“What remedy can there be for the blunders of technology but further technology?” - Momus makes progress

“Darling, I’m not leaving because I don’t care. It’s just that I haven’t the stomach to presence an unfolding catastrophe about which I can do nothing.” - It’s not you, it’s Momus
“It requires the special idiocy of a peasant to consign one’s own inheritance to the flames.” - Momus goes up in smoke
“Accord your fellowman all the respect due a feral beast. The ever-present threat of immediate, extreme violence lies at the very heart of all peaceful, civilised human relations.” - No pacifying Momus
“From the cradle to the grave, human dignity amounts to never providing for a person what they can provide for themself.” - hands off Momus
“Note to victims: if you insist upon walking through life oblivious you will be complicit in whatever befalls you. No matter what story you’ve been told, you are primarily responsible for yourself.” - Momus won’t suffer himself gladly
"Quick poll: how many agree that radio-frequency identification
subcutaneous microchip implants ought to be mandatory with enforced vaccination? (this is a safe space to freely express your support for the only morally correct view)" - Momus at warp speed
"What is a 'nice person' but a finely crafted masque to amplify the sound of one's own ignorance?" - Momus' reflection in a mirror darkly
"History amounts to little more than a pack of lies agreed upon...wouldn't you agree?" - Momus assimilates 

"There's no evidence you're a good person, that you're even much 'civilised. No, not really. What you are my furry little friend is warm and well fed. - fat and happy Momus
"It's not really reason that separates us from other animals, it's empathy. Empathy is the motive force behind our greatest virtues as well as our most heinous atrocities. Empathy is the basis of praise or blame, mercy or condemnation." - Momus' moment of lucidity
"In the end, if you look closely enough at this thing men call 'power', you'd realise that it's really nothing more than an intolerable servitude that one would do best to avoid." - Momus wants out

“Man is a moral animal, a judgemental machine. The man who claims freedom from discrimination is either wholly defective or a complete imbecile, but more likely a liar.” - Momus’ pickled as a herring
"Unless you're absolutely willing to accept every belief and any behaviour, your calls for inclusivity amount to figuring out who you're going to exclude and why." - Momus feels rejected

"When I was a child I had a vision for world unity. I thought how wonderful it will be when everyone has electricity, everyone has a car, everyone speaks English, everyone is equal...because they're just like me! I think I might be forgiven for that; after all, it was the infantile thinking of an undeveloped, immature child." - Grow up Momus
"The thing one must admire most about the historic self-preservation movement is their desire to freeze in amber the best remains of a dwindling supply of anything beautiful in this world because they know in their heart of hearts we can never, ever, ever have it again." - Less is Momus
"Cognition arrests transmission. If you want your idea to spread and receive wide acceptance make sure that it's devoid of intellectual content." - Momus goes bacterial 

"All that you pursued, acquired, and gave much of it meant anything to you beyond what you hoped might impress some passerby? Were disinterest, envy and resentment the rewards you were expecting?" - Momus makes an impression

"When the entire world in all its strivings is found to be in complete tumult, visited by plague after calamity, with the hand of each man at his brother's throat...well, my advice is to find a quiet spot, lie back, yawn, and dream about naked thighs." - Momus tickled pink

"Don't let them tell you any different, there is justice and equality in the world. It's true, we may never achieve what we'd hoped; however, in the end we all get what's coming." - The sun sets on Momus

“My good doctor has placed me on light duty, my being advised to lift nothing more than a fair maiden’s petticoat.” - Pound me too Momus

"Now darling, do remember that without sin there is simply no basis for forgiveness." - By the grace of Momus
“It’s bad enough being hungry. So sense in being hungry and tired.” - Momus is begging for it
"There are two narratives running in parallel regarding the relationship of men towards women. One is that throughout history boys have loved their mothers, fathers their daughters, and husbands their wives. Then there is the true one that men only wish to dominate and systematically oppress when they've had their fill of raping." - Time's up Momus
“The first lie is the worst lie. It’s the sweet one we whisper to ourselves.” - Busted Momus
“Thieves, murderers, and I come from a long line of bastards. They’re the ones who survived!” - Momus takes stock
“My thoughts on the nature vs nurture debate are as follows: no matter what you tell him or what you do, your little boy is going to grab handfuls of sand and throw them at the ocean.” - The Oracle of Momus
"You might want to quell your excitement for what they're giving you just long enough to consider, if but for a moment, what you're about to lose forever." - Think Momus Think
"Just remember, you are the victim. Mostly of your insatiable appetites, unchecked lust, and impulsive desires. But definitely the victim." - Momus was dealt a bad hand

 "Change the you don't have to change yourself, ever." - Momus' protest
"I'm very good with my hands but I'm exceptional with my tongue...or so I've been told." - Momus plays along
"Folks don't respect me for my mind, they only want me for my body." - Momus' naked truth

"If you're master of your own body, they'll be justified in suspecting you may've clue of what to do with theirs." - Momus is a dancing fool

"Depression, anxiety, grief are not pathologies to be fixed, rather fundamental aspects of one's humanity; appropriate responses to the tragic nature of our existence." - The Tears of Momus
“A moment on the lips, a lifetime on the hips...if one should be so lucky.” - Momus loves Mischief
"No guilt, no shame, no remorse. I know who and what I am and I just love what I see." - Momus reflects
"The trouble with craftsmen, farmers and all the other little people is that they're too preoccupied building up the world to help burn it down with the best of us." - Momus is Revolting
 "I'm very understanding of insecure people. What I primarily understand is that I don't want them anywhere near me." - Antisocialist Momus

"Who you really are and why you do what you do are far more complicated than you could possibly even begin to understand." - Momus strings us along

“The most unhelpful thing I ever told a friend was that there was nothing wrong with her.” - Over a barrel with Momus

"It's not just a mistake, rather a violation of his dignity, liberty, and person to care for an individual more than he’s willing to care for himself." - Momus wants for no one

“Who wouldn’t play the madman, when the king himself is insane?” - In Momus’ Shoes
“The distinction between what is natural and artificial is a simple one. Whereas everything man makes breaks down, the growth of nature, even when apparently chaotic, is but a transitory stage towards higher levels of holistic complexity.” - Momus’ Razor
"Now you see, what they neglect to mention is that those who do trouble themselves to learn from history are damned to bollocks everything up in an entirely novel way." - Momus 101 

"A wise man was once purported to have said: 'The heaviest load we carry are the thoughts in our heads.' I find that to be an highly charitable statement." - Momus being an ass
“The amazing thing about people is that, as individuals, we’re almost all wise and aware of what is right; but when we form ourselves into a group we forget anything that doesn’t suit our own pleasure and don’t care whether what we undertake is pernicious and base so long as we can have our way.” - Momus’ Ship of Fools
“It is an hopeful yet typically erroneous belief that fear and distrust is based solely on ignorance of the ‘other’. The disturbing reality is that our most intractable hatreds are rooted in a deep familiarity.” - to know Momus

“You know, contrary to popular belief there are really only two races. Care to guess what they are?  I’ll give ya an hint: one is more vital than the other and begins with a ‘W’. - Momus is dynamite

"I propose that those who are wholly against the idea of servants have never truly lived with nor experienced the benefits of servitude." - Momus at your service

“As the mysteries of nature have been sucessively unmasked, the old myths losing hold on the imagination, the superstitious terrors of the nite dissipating, in their place appears the nausea and unease of modernity, the plethora of systems we can’t hope to understand, hurtling us forward with an uncontollable inertia towards an yawning abyss. Our foolish ancestors might well would ask us if the stories we tell ourselves today to situate ourselves in this maelstrom, are these any less fanciful? - Momus in the Tempest

 “What is the progress of civilisation but an unfettered, unrelenting pogrom of improvement visited upon the unfortunate whether they want it or not? - Momus knows best
“The city occupies a special, unique place in human culture. Having established the best way of life, it is the only form of societal organisation that is completely intolerant of other forms of existence.” - Momus or else
“When you beat a fool, you don’t make a wise man of him. All you’ve to show for your troubles is a sore hand and a beaten fool.” - Momus’ voice of experience
 "Beware of charismatic leaders. The world needs healing, not saving." - Momus' out of tune
 “The reason you want to be better is the reason why you aren’t.” - Momus knows what’s Watts’
“Need I remind you that “stupid” is not a protected classification. It’s open season on all you dumbass mother...” - Momus’ locked and loaded


“When they say ‘violence begets violence’...well, I’d suggest they’re not doing it right.” - Lights out Momus

"If someone tells you 'we're all liars', might you not be a wee bit gullible to take them at their word?" - honestly Momus

 "Be brutal, just tell me. I can handle this. I really need to know. On a scale of 9 to 10 with 9.5 being the highest...honestly, how am I doing?" - The fragility of Momus

Contributed by Patrick Webb