- POPULAR CULTURE
- MENTAL HEALTH
- PHYSICAL SCIENCES
- BIOLOGICAL SCIENCES
- APPLIED SCIENCES
- PRINT & MEDIA
NEW COMERS TO THIS SITE
New comers to this site will soon discover that this website is meant to be: (i) an archive of my own life and work, and (ii) the lives and the works, the thoughts and the words, of many others both in the past and present. There are many criteria I draw on for the inclusion of the work of others in order to produce this internet island of what I like to think has both diversity and quality. I am no specialist but, rather, a generalist who has been reading and studying, teaching and learning, in a host of different ways over the vast landscapes of knowledge for more than 7 decades. Due to my being a generalist, readers will find more than 100 different sections and sub-sections, disciplines and fields, subjects and topics at this website.
Due to my need to explain to myself what and why I am thinking and what I am doing, and why and what others are thinking and doing, I write. That is my motive, at least one of my main motives, for writing anything. “I set out, usually, on a mission of self-discovery,” that fine essayist Joseph Epstein told The Atlantic a few years ago, “to find out what I really think about a subject. I don’t have fixed opinions or views when I start to write; it’s writing that forces them out of me.” “Simply to give pleasure at a fairly high intellectual level makes my day.” Touche! I hope this website gives such pleasure. My site is, though, a self-organized learning environment for me in these years of my retirement now that I am going through my 70s and 80s, if I last into the years after 2024. I leave it to readers to work out their own learning environments in the vast landscape that is cyberspace.
Researchers and specialists focus on narrow fields of knowledge. Sometimes these specialists are given the name monomaths as opposed to polymaths, those who know a great deal about many things. I am neither monomath nor polymath, but on this website I draw on both these types of specialists or experts. I am a dabbler, a generalist, who has come to know more and more about many things, but not enough to be considered as a specialist. I find myself, as I enter the first years of my 70s, furthering my generalist's knowledge. At least I feel as if this is partly the case. This is especially due to the great array of burgeoning regions of knowledge where one can only skim the surface. Each region, each specialization, of knowledge is a vast expanse of materials and messages, information and instruction. The more that one comes to study any particular discipline or sub-discipline, the more one realizes how little is the little that one knows. In spite of the great diversity of disciplines and webpages here, as I say, I am no polymath. I am not one of those renaissance men, as they are now sometimes called, whose expertise spans a significant number of different subject areas. I am no prodigy, no genius. There are vast stretches and tracts of the learning and experiential landscapes of life which hold little to no interest for me but, if I began to list them all here, it would lead to prolixity.
I am your ordinarily ordinary, humanly human, Everyday, Everyman, sort of person with a wide range of interests. These interests are displayed here at my website. These interests have resulted from having had both a generalist's education as a student over 18 years in classrooms and lecture-halls, school rooms and study halls. I have also had a generalist's teaching career teaching, training or tutoring pre-school children to university students, graduates to post-graduates, who were working on all sorts of awards and credentials, honours and forms of recogntion, degree and diploma programs, advanced degree & certificate courses. I also had a generalist's wide range of jobs and human experiences across the lifespan, jobs and experiences which are listed, FYI, in my resume at: http://www.ronpriceepoch.com/welcome.html Since I am no specialist, though, I can not speak with authority. To do so, one has to specialize.
Every word and idea, concept and notion, thought and supposition, at this website is meant in an unnumbered variety of ways. Every image and video, link and brain-wave is meaningful at least to me in some way or other. Others who come upon this vast literary collectivity need to choose from the smorgasbord of subject matter what is of interest to them. Where there is music and art, essays and books at this site, it is due to the sources and the resources to which I have responded over the many years of my lifespan. Such a varied scope, such an immense variety of reading material, at this site is without theoretical limit. In the first 5 years of this latest edition of my site, 2011 to 2015, a website which was started in 1997, I have barely got started. I look forward in the years ahead as I go through my 70s, 80s, and 90s, if I last that long, to the continued and continuous development of this site, of my life and of my society.
I would like to discuss the major differences among Web 1.0, Web 2.0 & Web 3.0 to help you better understand the place of my website in particular, and my internet activity in general, in the general scheme of the Internet. Go to the link below for an excellent overview of the differences between these three categories on the World Wide Web: https://wittycookie.wordpress.com/2012/06/04/what-are-the-major-differences-among-web-1-0-2-0-and-3-0/
MY 'GOOD-WEB-GUIDE' REVIEW
I would like "The Good Web Guide Review" of my website to read as follows: "Ron Price's website entitled: Pioneering Over Five Epochs is a generous and wonderful delight. Ron's website provides a window into the future for cultural multi-media websites. His site ought to be a spur to an artistic renaissance on the internet; it is so beautifully designed. In Ron's audio and visual resources there are fascinating dialogues. His video archive is a treasure-house of wit and insight." Such an opening note might be followed by these two sentences: "readers get to digitally experience the event, the idea or the concept by finding and zooming-in on the locations they read about in the related books and ebooks as well as on the high-quality map-linked resources such as universities, government and non-government agencies, wikipedia, Jstor and the various print and electronic media. Readers also get to follow writers and explorers, see up close actual ruins, forts, pyramids, shipwrecks, geological sites, climate classifications, inter alia."
I would also like my site to possess a high MozTrust domain rating. MozTrust gives users a global link trust score. It is similar to MozRank, but rather than measuring link popularity, it measures link trust. Receiving links from sources with inherent trust, such as the homepages of major university websites or certain government web pages, is a strong trust endorsement. This is what I would like my site review to read but, as yet, the audio and video resources have not been designed and uploaded as extensively as I'd like. My site is also not aimed in the first instance to be a self-organized learning enviroment for readers. It is primarily for me in my roles as: writer and author, poet and publisher, reader and scholar, editor and researcher, online blogger and journalist. If readers find my site useful that is a bonus. The wit and wisdom, the intellectual value & the insight available to others needs to be sharpened and deepened, extended and made more attractive to users in the months and years ahead---far more than it already has in the last 18 years during which this website has evolved.
I will be leaving many aspects of the development of my website to the 5th edition which I hope will come out sooner rather than later. There now exists, though, the equivalent of some 60 books at 80,000 words per book of sources and resources, of essays and poems, of books and ebooks, of videos and photos, for readers with the interest. Readers who want to comment can do so by pressing the 'comment' button at the bottom of virtually all the webpages.
A leopard has adorned this accesspage, this homepage, of my website for the last 14 years. The leopard is an opportunistic, single and versatile hunter; it is often used in heraldry, on coats of arms in tracing geneology and to indicate a particular ancestry. My first use of a leopard on this opening page of my website was largely accidental, but its use has proved fortuitous. When my son, Daniel, and I were creating the second edition of this website more than a dozen years ago in 2001, a photo of a leopard was available. We stuck it in to provide a visual stimulus. I kept the image in this website's 3rd edition, and again in the 4th edition as part of my introduction, my homepage. Perhaps, as this website enters its 5th edition in the coming years, I may change this photo, and the several others.
My website design company, Design Studio of Mosman NSW, added these photos more than 4 years ago. Time will tell what eventuates in future editions of my website as I go through my 70s in the years 2014 to 2024. Before continuing, I should give my son, Daniel, and my wife, Chris, a thank-you for their work over the years in helping me with problems that arise in my IT world. My son is now 38, a technical-writer here in Tasmania with a B. Mech. Eng.(honours) from Curtin University. My wife is a multi-skilled, autodidact, who has been my helpmate for more than four decades. Thanks are also due to: (i) an old friend Graham Nicholson for his intellectual and financial support at critical times in the evolution of my website, and (ii) Daniel Sullivan, the artistic director, marketing consultant, and my general website-problem-solver on behalf of Define Studio website design specialists in Sydney Australia.
The leopard is the smallest of the four "big cats," the others being the lion, tiger and jaguar. What follows at this site is a collection of writings from an animal who, like the leopard, is quite solitary or, should I say has become more solitary with age. “I never found a companion," wrote Henry David Thoreau(1817-1862), "that was so companionable as solitude.” It is in solitude that I write and read; it is here, too, that I create the person I want to be. “Thought is the sculptor," said Thoreau again, "who can create the person you want to be." I thank the famous essayist, Joseph Epstein, and his book Plausible Prejudices: Essays on American Writing(WW Norton and Co., NY, 1985, p. 392) for these quotes. I thank, too, Anthony Storr (1920-2001), the English psychiatrist, psychoanalyst and author for his book "Solitude" which is the best book I've read on the subject.
I have developed, like the leopard, what I like to think is an agile and versatile, opportunistic and stealthy style, an ability to adapt, again like the leopard, to many habitats. Like the leopard, though, I do not always catch my prey. Even after more than seven decades of hunting: (a) for my survival and (b) for the simple pleasures of the hunt, I still do not always win in the hunt and gather process. In the modern forms of hunting and gathering, quite idiosyncratic to each individual, at least in some ways, my hunting & gathering has become largely literary & intellectual, scholarly & cerebral, bookish & creative. This has become especially true in these years of my retirement from what was a half-century of a student-and-paid-employment life, 1949 to 1999.
These hunting and gathering activities, of course, have been psychological and sociological, historical and metaphorical. Hunting and gathering has characterized most of the historical timeline of the human species. Foraging was the ancestral subsistence mode of Homo. The Cambridge Encyclopedia of Hunter-Gatherers says: "Hunting & gathering was humanity's first & most successful adaptation, occupying at least 90 percent of human history. Until 12,000 to 20,000 years ago, all humans lived this way." Following the invention of agriculture, hunter-gatherers were displaced by farming or pastoralist groups in most parts of the world. Then, of course, came the industrial and post-industrial revolutions. My life has been lived in the context of these latter revolutions. My life has been a studious & academic one as a: student & scholar, a teacher & a tutor, lecturer & adult educator. Now in my retirement years, my latter years of withdrawal from so many things that occupied me until what seems like just the other day, I have reinvented myself as a writer and author, poet and publisher, online blogger and journalist, reader and researcher, editor, marketer and publicist of my own work. I may be spreading myself too thin. Leonardo da Vinci warned against engaging in too great a variety of subjects. If being obsessive about one subject is what unlocks the keys to genius, I shall never find those keys.
I have one central psychological
and spiritual commitment, and it
is through the lens of this duty,
this engagement, a quite serious
undertaking, indeed, a passion,
that I sift through the great, the
endless, seas of knowledge that
are spread-out across landscape
after landscape, specializations
for all the hedgehogs who rule,(1)
who exercise their authority, in
field after field. I am simply the
fox, one of a myriad of animals
who roam the hillsides of life, &
come to know a little about lots
of things which I lay out on my
website for all to see who want
to see and who come to my web
site and forage around in many
of the landscapes of knowledge
that I lay out for many readers.
(1) Isaiah Berlin(1909-1997), political theorist, philosopher and historian of ideas, once divided thinkers into two types. Foxes, he wrote, know many things; whereas hedgehogs know one big thing. The foxes used to roam free across the hills. Today the hedgehogs rule. I see myself as partly fox and partly hedgehog, but not enough of one to rule for I am no specialist.
Since the neolithic revolution, or the neolithic demographic transition, sometimes called the agricultural revolution, the world's first historically verifiable revolution in agriculture in the years 20,000 to 12,000 BP; since the domestication of various types of plants & animals evolved in separate locations worldwide, starting(circa) in the geological epoch of the Holocene 12,000 years ago; since the modern agricultural & industrial revolutions of the century from 1750 to 1850, to say nothing of the many revolutions of the last 150 years, human existence has been transformed far beyond what it was like for the many millennia of our hunting and gathering history, indeed, for virtually our entire existence as homo sapiens sapiens.
My habitats in the last seven decades were mainly social ones: school and family, paid-employment & volunteer groups, friendships & peer groups, clubs and communities, teams and triads, in-groups and out-groups, dyads and organizations. There has always been, though, a strong element of the solitary in my literary and studious habitations, my social & school settings. I was the only child of older parents. I was conceived in the autumn, in mid-October, of 1943 in the midst of the second World War. The Holocaust was in full-swing unbeknowst to most people at the time, and the New York Yankees had just defeated the St Louis Cardinals in baseball's World Series, a fact well-known to baseball lovers.
The Oxford English Dictionary cites the first known usage in the English language for the term 'World War' as being in April 1909 in the pages of the Westminster Gazette. The remains of the Báb were buried on March 21, 1909 in a six-room mausoleum made of local stone. I have always found a synchronicity of many of the aspects of Babi-Baha'i history & aspects of modern history of personal interest. This is largely because I have now been associated with this latest of the Abrahamic religions for more than six decades of my life. My religious evangelism has become more quiet with age, and I try not to knock people over with my convictions.
Everyone has convictions of some sort, and the notion that 'I am right and you are wrong' causes so many problems in our search for 'answers' in the complex world of the humanities and social sciences. I have no desire to add to that great divide between minds and hearts by an intolerant insistence on agreement and finality. There is, in our world, a strong need for a tolerant assertion of preference as we each deal with the absolutes in our private worlds, without calling down fire from heaven on those who do not agree with us. There is a strong need, too, to stress the cultural similarities underneath what are often deceptive but superficial institutional divergences. Reality, it seems to me is like a white light that is broken-up partly by the prism of human nature into a spectrum of values and colours, ideas and attitudes.
My father was 55 when I was born, and my mother 40. I learned early, at least by the late 1940s, to occupy myself pleasantly without the need for human interaction with play-mates. The places I came to occupy, though, beginning in those 1940s, were increasingly those involving physical activity and the social, academic & increasingly literary habitats. On 23 July 2014 I entered the last decade(70 to 80) of late adulthood, the years 60 to 80 according to some human development psychologists; my lifestyle had become, by my 70s, very academic and literary and, as in those years of my early childhood, very solitary.
I am not entirely a hermit, not entirely reclusive, though. Over a 12 month period I am seen in various homes: some of family members, and some of friends, people whom I have come to know and interact with in Tasmania in the 20 years I have lived in this southern extremity of Australia. I have lived in this oldest town in Australia, George Town, since I was 55, some 15 years, since taking an early retirement, a sea-change, as it has come to be known in some parts of the world. I am also a husband and father, grandfather and uncle, online blogger and journalist, editor and researcher. I spend much time in cyberspace, about 6 hours daily, and also 6 hours in real space. I then spend 12 hours in bed due to the medications I take for my bipolar I disorder, and several other infirmities. All of these roles involve me with people in one way or another, except those 12 hours in bed; then I have to deal with dreams. But I leave that subject to other sections of this website.
Like the leopard I eat meat but, unlike the leopard, I do not climb trees, at least not any more, not since the early 1950s when, in the years of my middle childhood the ages from 6 to 12, again according to one of the many models of human development in the lifespan, I used to climb cherry trees, among other types of trees, near my home in southern Ontario Canada, in what is known as the Golden Horseshoe. Nor do I eat humans. The leopard and I also part company in that I write poetry & prose. Those who come to this part of my website can even read my last five annual letters to family and friends for the years 2011 to 2015. These annual letters are quite detailed; they bring anyone who is interested up-to-date with my life and the 'significant others' in it, as they say in psychology. These letters are found amidst several pieces of my writing, and by scrolling-down the left side of the following link, FYI: http://www.my-diary.org/read/d/465760
MY VERSION OF A CREATIVE COMMONS COPYRIGHT
According to the U.S. Copyright Office copyright is a legal right for someone to make copies of, sell, & otherwise exploit a literary, musical, or other creative work. A copyright is good for the life of the author, and then for a period of 70 years after the author dies. If the work was anonymous then copyright lasts 95 years from the date of publication, or 120 years from the date of creation (whatever comes first). I refer to use of my literary work, my prose and poetry, as "under license" or "with permission." I have placed all my writing in the public domain, and I regard it as public property.
I hereby offer my work under my own version of what is known as "A Creative Commons Copyright Licence." This means that I permit users to make use of my material in various ways. All the content of this website exists, as I say, under my own version of a creative commons copyright. This means that others are free to copy, distribute and remix what they find at this site. I would appreciate, but I do not require, that others cite the source of material they find at this site. These paragraphs above and below provide a simple and readable summary of, but not a substitute for, a license.
Readers are advised to note the following disclaimer: "These words of mine highlight the main, the key, features of the terms and conditions of the use others make of what they find at this site. These words that I use here do not constitute a license, and they have no legal value. Readers can, if they so desire, carefully review all of the terms and conditions of actual licenses before using any licensed material they find in cyberspace. I leave this to the discretion of readers. This statement is my own simulation of "A Creative Commons Copyright License." It is not the equivalent, though, of a legal document obtained from a law firm. I do not provide legal services, or anything that could be described as legal advice, at this site. Readers who want to link to these words, to distribute them, or to display them in any way do not, in the process, create a lawyer-client or any other kind of legal relationship with me.
You are free: (i) to share, to copy, and to redistribute the material in any medium or format found at this site. and (ii) to adapt, to remix, to transform, & to build upon the material for any purpose, even commercially. Readers are advised, as I say above, to give appropriate credit for what they find here, if they use it for their own purposes. Readers may do so in any reasonable manner, & I do not ask readers to adhere to any other restrictions. In addition, I am not in the business of checking to see if readers have adhered to my advice and suggestions in the above paragraphs.
THIS LEOPARD AND ME
Leopards, just to continue on that opening subject here, can be observed in their private habitats and I, too, welcome visitors to mine. Except for the snow leopard, the leopard is a relatively abundant species. 'Ron Prices' are also abundant; over 5000 of them can now be found in cyberspace: some of notoriety, and many with significant degrees of talent & achievement. Although these other 'Ron Prices' are neither nameless nor traceless among the burgeoning billions now on our planet they, like most other human beings, make only a very small mark on history's woodpile, the immense landscape of climatic and vegetation, soil and population-density regions covering our planet. This virtual anonymity has been the case with most humans who have ever lived. This is still the case even with cyberspace giving some degree of publicity to millions of men and women.
Like the snow leopard, though, my life is increasingly endangered as I head into the late evening of my life & the inevitability of death. All of us, all humans, have lives which are endangered since we are all going to die. Some will die sooner & some later, but all with an inevitability & certitude. I have no desire to live beyond 100, and certainly not as long as the proverbial Methuselah. But, given the advances in modern medicine and my increasing interest in health, exercise, and what some call 'personal hygiene factors', I think I stand a good chance. Of course, "no man knoweth what and when his own end shall be", wrote some poet.
According to the Hebrew Bible Methuselah, that oldman in the Bible, is purported to be the oldest person to have ever lived. Extra-biblical tradition maintains that he died at the age of 969, 7 days before the beginning of the Great Flood. Methuselah was the son of Enoch and the grandfather of Noah. The meaning of Methuselah's age has engendered considerable speculation, but no widely accepted conclusions. These speculations can be discussed under four categories and their combinations: literal, mistranslation, symbolic, & fictional interpretations. If there is to be another great flood, which many 'time-of-the-enders', and people concerned with many varieties of apocalypticism, keep talking about, I would be quite happy to make my exit Methuselah-like. I often think another Great Flood has already begun, but I leave such speculations to readers with Biblical interests and enthusiasms, as well as interests in catastrophes, past, present and future.
HOMO SAPIENS SAPIENS
The human species, such is my view, is on its way in the centuries ahead to a Golden Age, a future that is unimaginably glorious in spite of appearances to the contrary at this juncture in history. That process has already begun. Some appearances even now are distinctly utopian compared to what life was like for most people until recent times: nasty, brutish and short, according to the 16th century philosopher Thomas Hobbes. As the famous French philosopher, paleontologist and geologist Teilhard de Chardin(1881-1955), whose works were condemned by the Holy Office, has argued, it is the utopians who are the realists. Chardin was thinking here of the unbelievably vast changes that have taken place since humans lived in caves & hunted like that leopard mentioned above, & not so long ago as geological & archeological time flies. Chardin also tended to be on the side of utopia and not oblivion.
KNITTING THE WORLD TOGETHER
I take deep satisfaction, and much personal delight, from the advances in society that have been made in the last 150 years, the lifetimes of my generation, the generation of my parents, my grandparents, and my great-grandparents. Since, say, Darwin's Origin of the Species(1859), and Einstein's publications at the turn of the 20th century, as well as a host of other contributors to our knowledge since the middle of the 19th century, and especially contributors to science and technology, human life in the developed world has been transformed. I take a particular and quite personal pleasure from the processes that have been knitting together the peoples and nations of the world, again, in spite of appearances to the contrary. From the telegraph in the middle of the 19th century, to the internet at the end of the 20th and early 21st, the tyranny of distance has been overcome, at least for some if not for the entire human race as yet. The issues and questions in relation to this subject, this process and progress, and the very meaning of history, of course, are complex. I deal with a great many of these issues and questions, among a vast array of subjects in various ways at this website.
In some ways my eventual, my long-range, aim at this website is to have, arranged in this one place, the central, the main, some of the many thousands, the components of knowledge and experience that have made up my lifetime, my lifespan. It is a lifetime that has been marked, almost year by year, by things of significance. Some of the things I discuss are significant to others, and some have meaning and purpose only to me. I see this whole website apparatus, indeed, I experience it as a single thing, but a single thing only in the sense that a galaxy is a single thing, when seen from a distance. This website, of course, does not deal with all fields of knowledge & experience. My literary interests, though wide, do not include any and every subject in existence. This site deals with over 100 sub-divisions of human knowledge, but readers who come to this site will find little mention of: gardening & cooking, eating & drinking, the mechanical workings of cars, refrigerators, and dozens of others items in our technological society. The list of topics I do not deal with in any literary way is virtually endless: toys & taxes, games & gambling, clothes & clubs, fish & factories, maps & minecraft, inter alia.
GALAXIES AND ME
In the following paragraphs I compare myself and my life to a galaxy. Much is known about a galaxy, and much is unknown. A galaxy is a massive, gravitationally bound system. The older I live, the more massive becomes the quantity, the details, the unnumbered events in my life. A galaxy consists of stars, stellar remnants, an interstellar medium of gas and dust, as well as dark matter. Dark matter is an important, but poorly understood, component of a galaxy. My life, now more than 70 years of existence, also contains much 'dark matter' as well as 'much light'. We all carry with us through our days 'a higher self' and 'a lower self', selves which I discuss in some detail in this autobiographical website as I go about analysing and commenting on my life, my society, and much else. The concepts 'higher self' and 'lower self' are common to many religious traditions as well as to many modern religious and new age movements. Go to this link FYI:http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Higher_self
The word galaxy is derived from the Greek word 'galaxias' meaning literally "milky", a reference to the Milky Way. Types of galaxies range from dwarfs, with as few as ten million stars, to giants with a hundred trillion stars, each orbiting their galaxy's own center and its mass. There is a great deal of my life that orbits around my central mass of some 235 to 240 pounds, with a body-mass index of 33, and on a frame of 5 feet and 11 and 1/2 inches. Ideas, thoughts, concepts, actions, motivations, emotions, attitudes, loves, likes and dislikes, passions and prejudices, indeed, a vast array of abstract and quite concrete stuff is part and parcel of my galaxy.
Galaxies have been historically categorized according to their apparent shape, usually referred to as their visual morphology. Galaxies come in three main types: ellipticals, spirals, and irregulars. So, too, can people be categorized by body shape and type: ectomorph, endomorph, or mesomorph. There are also three separate body types in men: the thyroid, pituitary and adrenal types. I am a combination of several of these types. The majority of galaxies are organized into a hierarchy of associations known as groups and clusters, which, in turn usually form larger superclusters. So, too, is my life, my individual life, like a galaxy, organized into a hierarchy of associations. I have belonged to many groups and clusters of people: families, employment, volunteer and interest groups, local, regional and national groups. My supercluster is humanity itself.
Although I now have millions of readers, something quite unimaginable until the early years of this 21st century, few of those who visit my website and my writings in cyberspace, actually come into my literary habitat, my study here in this little town in Tasmania. When they do, I can not show them 'my etchings.' What one writes is not like what one draws, paints or sculpts. Words on a page are for the private delectation of readers in their private spaces and, increasingly, in public and electronic spaces. My words can be observed by the millions on the internet for those who are interested.
Collectors from charitable organizations, and those who have some cause to tell me about, come to my door. The only ones who come in the door, and not just to the door, are a few family members and friends. Occasionally a big crowd comes into my home, family gatherings or a big Baha'i group, but not nearly as often as big crowds once did. As I say, my life-style, my modus vivendi, is much more solitary now, a suitable one for the full-time writer and author, poet and publisher, as well as the online blogger and journalist which I have become. If I want a bit of social contact, like some residue from the more than half a century of wall-to-wall people in my life, I go for a short walk and visit a friend. In this respect I am much like my grandfather on my mother's side. I remember him well in the evening of his life, and in the childhood which was mine back in the 1950s. Reading and going for walks with an occasional appearance at family gatherings, and/or a visit with a friend, was his modus operandi, as I remember it in those 1950s. This way of living is largely mine as I head through my 70s, from 23 July 2014 to 23 July 2024.
MY CAMOUFLAGE AND MY READERSHIP
The camouflage of the leopard makes sightings rare. I, too, have a certain camouflage or protection that takes the form of my books as well as my hard copy and electronic files, my prose and poetry, my many intellectual pursuits: learning and the cultural attainments of the mind. But all is not camouflage at this site. Readers will come across a mild confessionalism, a confessionalism to partly satisfy curiosity and whet the whistle of readers. It is also a moderate confessionalism that goes hand-in-hand with my autobiography and memoirs.
Readers will find at this site a wide range of subject matter, causes to which I am committed and interests in which I have been engaged, some for decades. Readers can access this content by clicking on the subject titles at the top of this page or by scrolling down and clicking on the topics below. Of course, it could be said that the more topics, or the more strings to a writer's bow, or anyone's bow for that matter, that a person has, the smaller the feathers in their cap must be.
The more than 100 sections & sub-sections of this website demonstrate the breadth of intellectual curiosity in my work & whatever scholarly allure it possesses. Hopefully, readers with an interest in one or more of these sections or sub-sections, one of these small feathers, one or more of my concerns or enthusiasms, one or more of my interests or the causes to which I have been involved with most of my life in various ways, can get that same curiosity satisfied, those same whistles whetted. Given the burgeoning quantities of information now available on every conceivable topic on the internet, I will only gain a coterie of the 3 billion users who now come into cyberspace. I have millions of readers after 20 years in cyberspace, after engaging in what are called search engine optimization techniques, and after registering at over 8000 web sites. My website, nearly 20 years old and in its 4th edition is only one website of the nearly 1 billion other websites on the internet. I'm a needle in the haystack but, then, so is everyone else in many ways.
Whatever need I once had for recognition, for a readership, has been satisfied to the full. I write largely for pleasure and, if readers come along, that is a bonus. I don't mind bonuses, especially of that sort. Given the immense variety of content found at this site, I should like to think that there is no such thing as a shallow subject, only a shallow treatment of it. In the more than 100 major sub-divisions of content, a certain shallowness is inevitable for an academic generalist like myself. This shallowness is, of course, from the point of view of specialists and experts in those many & various fields of knowledge.
Readers who spend much time at this website will come across, again and again, my optimiism, not only about myself, but my world, & especially the Baha'i community which I have been part of, in one way or another, for more than 60 years. Even when I describe the awfulness of existence and its myriad of tragedies for billions of people in this 7.3 billion-peopled world, as well as the tragedy of much of history, I present readers with an optimism that is sometimes like subtle background music, & sometimes like a quiet but insistent drumbeat. Through all this writing & all this living, with each word, perhaps as evidence of a person who is certain of his message and the basis of his optimism, I try never to shout. Even though I feel a sense of certitude, a measure of doubt often accompanies what I write for I am more than a little conscious that the feeling one is right is not the same as being right. Such a view that one is right & the other person is wrong contributes to much that is a problem in society. I don't want to contribute to that problem. At the very least I'd like to make the smallest of contributions to the hightened intensities of the many evangelisms now filling the print and electronic media.
The voice of the intellect for me, if not for all those who are thinkers and who are intellectually inclined, is a soft one. I consider that I have many responsibilities, but none greater than this: "to last." The famous American writer Ernest Hemingway said this, and added: "I want to get my work done." I want to be, and I try to be, as another famous writer James Baldwin once said, an honest man and a good writer. Like so many things in life, these goals will only be achieved in part. I try to be much-else, and readers of my website will find out a great deal of this 'much-else.'
MY ANNUAL EMAIL AND AUTOBIOGRAPHY
To read more of this introductory, this access, page of my website go to:http://www.ronpriceepoch.com/welcome.html For my annual email for 2011 readers can go to the sub-section of this site entitled 'Autobiography' at: http://www.ronpriceepoch.com/auto.html That annual email has received more than 1700 hits since it went online 4 years ago in 2011. All these hits more than justify my placing that annual letter on the internet. Having that many hits is a modest figure, though, in a world where many successful sites get millions of hits. Realising that fame, celebrity status & wealth will always elude me, I write for many other reasons having to do with things like: the sheer pleasure of writing, the desire to communicate with others, my general health problems which limit my physical activity & socializing, & a host of other reasons. I often write about these reasons at many places in cyberspace, both on this my website and at dozens of sites in cyberspace among the 8000+ at which I am registered and interact with others in varying degrees from time to time.
If I did not get as much pleasure from the act of writing and reading, I'd work in the garden and visit more places of culture with my wife. I'd do more cooking and cleaning; I'd invest my enthusiasms in sport and watching TV, as well as taking-up some fancy or not-so-fancy, expensive or not-so-expensive, hobby apparatus. I'd also occupy myself with a variety of forms of entertainment, with having fun, with exercising & educating myself with my several interests in the social domain. These things have become the occupation and lifestyle of millions and billions now on the planet who have the leisure-time, the financial capacity, the health and the well-being to do so.
I keep the summer edition of my annual email/letter for 2012-2013 available at: http://mnemotechnics.org/blogs/ronprice/summer-edition-of-ron-prices-annual-email-for-201213-3113.html That annual email for 2012-2013 updated the details about my family & my general activities that I reported in my annual email for 2011-2012. There is no need to repeat all the details that were found in that 2011-2012 annual communication again. My 2013-2014 annual email/letter has moved on to other topics & subjects, as well as updating that previous year's email. By 23 April 2015 my annual email for 2011-2012 had received more than 6000 hits, making a total of more than 20,000(circa) hits for my five annual emails sent in the five year period 2011 to 2015. My annual emails have also been at sites with no counters for at least three years now, & so I can not accurately quantify the number of hits which my annual posts receive. I no longer, therefore, try to quantify the number of hits my annual emails have received with any accuracy. Total hits are now guesstimations.
In summary, then: readers wanting information about my family & my daily life can obtain those details at my 5 annual emails for 2011 to 2015. The last annual email was updated on 23/4/'15, with more than one month of autumn in the Antipodes now gone. The 5th edition of my annual email for 2013-'14, which had a guesstimated 3000+ hits, is found at this link:http://www.my-diary.org/read/d/465760 Readers need to scroll-down the left side of the access page at that link, and then go to the posts for: 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, and 2015. For those who actually enjoy my writing, I wish you happy traveling through my annual emails, & at many of the more than 100 sub-sections of this website, as well as wherever else you come across my writing at those 8000+ of cyberspace's sites. For those who just want to dabble & surf-about, there is plenty of stuff here for you. For those who have already had enough, I bid you a fond farewell.
By my 70th birthday on 23 July 2014, more than eight months ago as I update this access page of my website, I had also 'unfriended' some 150 of my former Facebook-friends in order to free myself from what had become an essentially distracting form of communication. Those former Facebook friends and even those who wanted to be my friend could still access my Facebook-page at: https://www.facebook.com/ronprice9 In the last six years, 2009 to 2015, as I was freeing myself from as much distracting internet activity as possible, as I was engaging in this necessary form of avoidance, the readership of my online writing climbed into the millions. This readership was found across the vast landscape of cyberpsace at over 8000 websites. I would not have believed this possible far back in the last years of the 20th century when the first edition of my website went online.
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