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fanuzzir
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Moby Dick: Final confrontation; Final thoughts, Chapters 133-Epilogue.

[ Edited ]
The inevitable arrives, with all the dramatic confrontatons and literary allusions you could want. Enjoy Chapter 133 through to the epilogue, surely one of the most beautiful sign-offs in the history of literature.

Message Edited by fanuzzir on 12-10-200611:00 PM

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MOBY-DICK, OR, THE WHALE

[ Edited ]
What a book! I absolutely loved it.

Message Edited by pmath on 01-30-200707:30 AM

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Laurel
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Quiz

Once you have reached the end, spend the day celebrating. Then, if you want to feel REALLY good about yourself, take this quiz:

http://www.sparknotes.com/lit/mobydick/quiz.html
"Truth must of necessity be stranger than fiction, for fiction is the creation of the human mind, and therefore is congenial to it." ~~G.K. Chesterton
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Laurel
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The End

And a dizzying end it is.
"Truth must of necessity be stranger than fiction, for fiction is the creation of the human mind, and therefore is congenial to it." ~~G.K. Chesterton
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fanuzzir
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Re: The End

I'm not there yet, but circle back and keep prodding and tempting us with the great resolution. I'm envious.

Bob
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celebrate?



Laurel wrote:
Once you have reached the end, spend the day celebrating.




A day? How miserly.I'd suggest at least a week or better even, a month!

ziki
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Choisya
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Re: celebrate?

I would suggest a voyage on a luxury cruise liner for all of us who have been buffeted about on board the unluxurious Pequod:smileyvery-happy: Or have we had enough of the tumultous sea and perhaps need a big break on a tranquil beach of a Caribbean coral island?



ziki wrote:


Laurel wrote:
Once you have reached the end, spend the day celebrating.




A day? How miserly.I'd suggest at least a week or better even, a month!

ziki


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Final thoughts: I won my own doubloon after all

[ Edited ]

fanuzzir wrote:
The inevitable arrives, with all the dramatic confrontatons and literary allusions you could want.



yes indeed...Bills are unpayed, dishes undone, I hardly took a shower for days and ate just rice cakes ignoring the usual routine but I have seen the White Whale at last! Puh...this was not a reading, this was a hard work. But, I'd say: it all jelled nicely.

I am glad I took the risk of posting some pretty uninformed comments and desperate outcries and make contemporary fiction chic lit demands on Melville. This work is flexible, wide enough and there will never be any uniform explanation that all readers will agree upon. I am glad my first reading was done without jumping any chapters or using a crutch of any commentaries other than the posts on this site and the notes in the BN text.

In that way I feel that I was able to protect my personal 'fresh impression' of the book no matter what anybody said about it before and that is a very important thing for me because this gives me a clif to stand on. And not any intellectual boulder but some kind of wordless experience of the book as it stands with me today. With the risk of not understanding a lot of it at the first reading but understanding enough to absorb it. Did I explained this clearly enough?

One struggles through the book like one struggles through life and at best the meaning waits at the end of the journey or on the other side, leaving me spent and stum but maybe a little wiser or better say, humble and more vast,possibly extracting myself from pettiness.

ziki

Message Edited by ziki on 01-29-200707:36 PM

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Re: Moby Dick: Final confrontation

Ahab is the collective soul of the whale hunt per se. Of any hunt for that part. No matter the reason, he wants to win. How American is that? How universal is that? Is that an exclusive domain of humans or is it also a property of animals? Are animals operated by instincs and therefore excused? Who is to judge?

Perhaps Ahab wants to win over his fate which is impossible. While he wants to defeat, he is defeated. Not that Moby-Dick is God. He only helps to manifest the divine justice as played out in duality.
Both Ahab's will and M-D in his instinctual nature are both on the same level of existence. One attacking, the other attacked and vice versa. Now he's chasing me!, Ahab cries. Who will eat whom? The usual question of mundane survival.

It is the narcissism of Ahab that ultimately is his grave, not MD. The evil that is projected is not conquered and if there is any punishment than that's it. I wouldn't blame it on God though (as dogma does) because blaming is a symptom of evil.
God is nobody but you once you know thyself. That is not a blasphemy that is a fact.

So MD is not God, MD is mortal as anybody. We actually do not know f Moby Dick survives. He is presented as mythical but this fight doesn't exist on the divine level. It exists in the human mind.

All that is not serving God will be destroyed.'Twill eventually go down no matter how mant flags you nail to masts. The victory will never be yours if you don't submit, the great paradox. What can be said about free will in the context of M-D?
You ar ecaught in the drama of life yet your real struggle resides on another level.

The book is as unbearable as it is magnificent. I pitch my tent in both camps. It is fragmentary and yet it is whole. Seeing it from the end point it is clear that Ishmael's friendship with Queequeg would have been a too tight scope that wouldn't allow for the dimensions of epic. Both characters were just puppets in the show, as anybody else.

Ahab failed and many men do not even come close to Ahab's strength. Even Starbuck needed to admit that to himself. But Ahab's strength got corrupted. He settled only on petty revenge and lost his eternity and thus his task in life. Every men needs a mission but a few care to find it.

For a short moment Ahab saw his pettiness and the dimension of true grandeur (not his narcissistic pseudo grandeur=self importance) in Starbucks' eyes....but he didn't walk through that door. Most humans don't and so they are sacrificed. Prevented by his own fear and lack of courage (as opposed to his ability to manipulate) Ahab's learnings of a whole life time were misplaced and malused. This if nothing is sad and makes him into a tragic persona who failed at human task to grow spiritually.

ziki
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start&Epilogue.

Ishmael starts with looking at coffins in funeral houses and he is finally saved by a coffin at the end...premonition?
Spouter Inn, Peter Coffin...etc....'rather omnious that connection'...

ziki
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Re: Final thoughts: I won my own doubloon after all

[ Edited ]
Super post Ziki - I am throwing another couple of doubloons to you Over the Pond! All of your posts seem very informed to me and were a joy to read from start to finish of our epic journey:smileyhappy: Thank goodness we all survived and no-one needed a coffin!




ziki wrote:

fanuzzir wrote:
The inevitable arrives, with all the dramatic confrontatons and literary allusions you could want.



yes indeed...Bills are unpayed, dishes undone, I hardly took a shower for days and ate just rice cakes ignoring the usual routine but I have seen the White Whale at last! Puh...this was not a reading, this was a hard work. But, I'd say: it all jelled nicely.

I am glad I took the risk of posting some pretty uninformed comments and desperate outcries and make contemporary fiction chic lit demands on Melville. This work is flexible, wide enough and there will never be any uniform explanation that all readers will agree upon. I am glad my first reading was done without jumping any chapters or using a crutch of any commentaries other than the posts on this site and the notes in the BN text.

In that way I feel that I was able to protect my personal 'fresh impression' of the book no matter what anybody said about it before and that is a very important thing for me because this gives me a clif to stand on. And not any intellectual boulder but some kind of wordless experience of the book as it stands with me today. With the risk of not understanding a lot of it at the first reading but understanding enough to absorb it. Did I explained this clearly enough?

One struggles through the book like one struggles through life and at best the meaning waits at the end of the journey or on the other side, leaving me spent and stum but maybe a little wiser or better say, humble and more vast,possibly extracting myself from pettiness.

ziki

Message Edited by ziki on 01-29-200707:36 PM



Message Edited by Choisya on 01-29-200703:30 PM

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Re: Moby Dick: Final confrontation

Ziki wrote:
All that is not serving God will be destroyed.'Twill eventually go down no matter how mant flags you nail to masts. The victory will never be yours if you don't submit, the great paradox.


Do you think that Melville, who lost his Calvinist faith, was meaning to say this? I feel the book is saying that 'all who do not acknowledge the power of Nature and humanity will be destroyed' because there were many 'gods' in this book - Queequeg's and Tashtego's too. There is more pantheism here than monotheism, methinks.




ziki wrote:
Ahab is the collective soul of the whale hunt per se. Of any hunt for that part. No matter the reason, he wants to win. How American is that? How universal is that? Is that an exclusive domain of humans or is it also a property of animals? Are animals operated by instincs and therefore excused? Who is to judge?

Perhaps Ahab wants to win over his fate which is impossible. While he wants to defeat, he is defeated. Not that Moby-Dick is God. He only helps to manifest the divine justice as played out in duality.
Both Ahab's will and M-D in his instinctual nature are both on the same level of existence. One attacking, the other attacked and vice versa. Now he's chasing me!, Ahab cries. Who will eat whom? The usual question of mundane survival.

It is the narcissism of Ahab that ultimately is his grave, not MD. The evil that is projected is not conquered and if there is any punishment than that's it. I wouldn't blame it on God though (as dogma does) because blaming is a symptom of evil.
God is nobody but you once you know thyself. That is not a blasphemy that is a fact.

So MD is not God, MD is mortal as anybody. We actually do not know f Moby Dick survives. He is presented as mythical but this fight doesn't exist on the divine level. It exists in the human mind.

All that is not serving God will be destroyed.'Twill eventually go down no matter how mant flags you nail to masts. The victory will never be yours if you don't submit, the great paradox. What can be said about free will in the context of M-D?
You ar ecaught in the drama of life yet your real struggle resides on another level.

The book is as unbearable as it is magnificent. I pitch my tent in both camps. It is fragmentary and yet it is whole. Seeing it from the end point it is clear that Ishmael's friendship with Queequeg would have been a too tight scope that wouldn't allow for the dimensions of epic. Both characters were just puppets in the show, as anybody else.

Ahab failed and many men do not even come close to Ahab's strength. Even Starbuck needed to admit that to himself. But Ahab's strength got corrupted. He settled only on petty revenge and lost his eternity and thus his task in life. Every men needs a mission but a few care to find it.

For a short moment Ahab saw his pettiness and the dimension of true grandeur (not his narcissistic pseudo grandeur=self importance) in Starbucks' eyes....but he didn't walk through that door. Most humans don't and so they are sacrificed. Prevented by his own fear and lack of courage (as opposed to his ability to manipulate) Ahab's learnings of a whole life time were misplaced and malused. This if nothing is sad and makes him into a tragic persona who failed at human task to grow spiritually.

ziki


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Melville's religion

I read he was not a firm believer but I do not know enough about his background, I just read the summaries. By know you know that my take on God is sort of liberal. :-)

ziki
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Re: Moby Dick: Final confrontation



Choisya wrote:
Ziki wrote:
All that is not serving God will be destroyed.'Twill eventually go down no matter how mant flags you nail to masts. The victory will never be yours if you don't submit, the great paradox.


Do you think that Melville, who lost his Calvinist faith, was meaning to say this? I feel the book is saying that 'all who do not acknowledge the power of Nature and humanity will be destroyed' because there were many 'gods' in this book - Queequeg's and Tashtego's too. There is more pantheism here than monotheism, methinks.






That is my thought. What Melville meant and how I am able to read it are two perhaps totally disparate things. I don't know what Melville meant to be honest. For me the Nature is a manifestation of God and so I see no divisions there more than the level of recognition.
We are part of the nature and it is inescapable but so can be the idea of a bigger whole (perhaps projected on the whale).


The queequeg's god is very here and now thing, palpable...what was god of those sailors? We didn't even speak of sexuality in this book....Queequeg's black god and the cassock-grandissimus and all paralells.

Women are void and the sexuality is covert.


ziki
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donyskiw
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Re: The End

Did you finish it Bob? I finished it this weekend. It was quite emotional for me.

Denise



fanuzzir wrote:
I'm not there yet, but circle back and keep prodding and tempting us with the great resolution. I'm envious.

Bob


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Choisya
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Re: Moby Dick: Final confrontation

Fanuzzir has asked somewhere else about the absence of women etc. What is also absent, except for the scene with Ishmael and Queequeg in bed, is any sense of homosexual behaviour (not homosexuality) on board the ship, although we know that it goes on in all male institutions. I guess this is because such inferences would be totally unacceptable to the society Melville was writing for. I somehow feel though, that Melville will have included hints somewhere if we can only see them?




ziki wrote:


Choisya wrote:
Ziki wrote:
All that is not serving God will be destroyed.'Twill eventually go down no matter how mant flags you nail to masts. The victory will never be yours if you don't submit, the great paradox.


Do you think that Melville, who lost his Calvinist faith, was meaning to say this? I feel the book is saying that 'all who do not acknowledge the power of Nature and humanity will be destroyed' because there were many 'gods' in this book - Queequeg's and Tashtego's too. There is more pantheism here than monotheism, methinks.






That is my thought. What Melville meant and how I am able to read it are two perhaps totally disparate things. I don't know what Melville meant to be honest. For me the Nature is a manifestation of God and so I see no divisions there more than the level of recognition.
We are part of the nature and it is inescapable but so can be the idea of a bigger whole (perhaps projected on the whale).


The queequeg's god is very here and now thing, palpable...what was god of those sailors? We didn't even speak of sexuality in this book....Queequeg's black god and the cassock-grandissimus and all paralells.

Women are void and the sexuality is covert.


ziki



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Re: The End



donyskiw wrote:
Did you finish it Bob? I finished it this weekend. It was quite emotional for me.




Tell us more if you feel like it.

ziki
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fanuzzir
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Re: Moby Dick: Final confrontation

Three points about this I love:
That Ahab would not accept fate, which was to be injured, defeated, and vulnerable;
that's there's not evil except what we project; that Ahab could not live up to the noble dimensions that Starbuck saw in him.
What a summation! But never a last word.





ziki wrote:
Ahab is the collective soul of the whale hunt per se. Of any hunt for that part. No matter the reason, he wants to win. How American is that? How universal is that? Is that an exclusive domain of humans or is it also a property of animals? Are animals operated by instincs and therefore excused? Who is to judge?

Perhaps Ahab wants to win over his fate which is impossible. While he wants to defeat, he is defeated. Not that Moby-Dick is God. He only helps to manifest the divine justice as played out in duality.
Both Ahab's will and M-D in his instinctual nature are both on the same level of existence. One attacking, the other attacked and vice versa. Now he's chasing me!, Ahab cries. Who will eat whom? The usual question of mundane survival.

It is the narcissism of Ahab that ultimately is his grave, not MD. The evil that is projected is not conquered and if there is any punishment than that's it. I wouldn't blame it on God though (as dogma does) because blaming is a symptom of evil.
God is nobody but you once you know thyself. That is not a blasphemy that is a fact.

So MD is not God, MD is mortal as anybody. We actually do not know f Moby Dick survives. He is presented as mythical but this fight doesn't exist on the divine level. It exists in the human mind.

All that is not serving God will be destroyed.'Twill eventually go down no matter how mant flags you nail to masts. The victory will never be yours if you don't submit, the great paradox. What can be said about free will in the context of M-D?
You ar ecaught in the drama of life yet your real struggle resides on another level.

The book is as unbearable as it is magnificent. I pitch my tent in both camps. It is fragmentary and yet it is whole. Seeing it from the end point it is clear that Ishmael's friendship with Queequeg would have been a too tight scope that wouldn't allow for the dimensions of epic. Both characters were just puppets in the show, as anybody else.

Ahab failed and many men do not even come close to Ahab's strength. Even Starbuck needed to admit that to himself. But Ahab's strength got corrupted. He settled only on petty revenge and lost his eternity and thus his task in life. Every men needs a mission but a few care to find it.

For a short moment Ahab saw his pettiness and the dimension of true grandeur (not his narcissistic pseudo grandeur=self importance) in Starbucks' eyes....but he didn't walk through that door. Most humans don't and so they are sacrificed. Prevented by his own fear and lack of courage (as opposed to his ability to manipulate) Ahab's learnings of a whole life time were misplaced and malused. This if nothing is sad and makes him into a tragic persona who failed at human task to grow spiritually.

ziki


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MOBY-DICK, OR, THE WHALE: The Greatest American Novel

Nathaniel Hawthorne's The House of the Seven Gables used to be my favorite American novel, but now it shares the #1 spot on my list with MD.


Choisya wrote (here):
For my part I think Moby Dick has been the best book I have read with B&N and you folks, and with an excellent Moderator to boot. The standard of the analysis and comment has been so very high and so many insights have been gained that I feel I could stay on this voyage forever - with an occasional foray onto a South Sea island ...

pmath wrote (here):
As I told Bob earlier (here), I didn't understand most of what Ahab said! We're just going to have to read MD again, and again, and again,...
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fanuzzir
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Re: Moby Dick: Final confrontation



Choisya wrote:
Ziki wrote:
All that is not serving God will be destroyed.'Twill eventually go down no matter how mant flags you nail to masts. The victory will never be yours if you don't submit, the great paradox.


Do you think that Melville, who lost his Calvinist faith, was meaning to say this? I feel the book is saying that 'all who do not acknowledge the power of Nature and humanity will be destroyed' because there were many 'gods' in this book - Queequeg's and Tashtego's too. There is more pantheism here than monotheism, methinks.







There certainly is a multiple set of belief systems here, Melville's whale mythology included. That faith and conviction in higher purposes seems to be the common burden of everyone on board, and their shared mistake. So maybe it is an atheistic book.
Bob
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