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Re: Keats and Buddhism?

PostPosted: Sun Jun 06, 2010 7:37 am
by BrokenLyre
Yes, Cybele, that is exactly what I was driving at. Well said.

Raphael is correct too that there are still huge fears today with AIDS etc.. and there is still so much suffering around the world. She is right in that we all experience some suffering. I was just pointing out that death was much closer and more often in earlier times (death of siblings was common especially in younger ages!). I have attended only 3 funerals for young kids in the past 30 years. I'll bet there were many more funerals for kids back in Keats' day. So yes, people lived with great uncertainty and pain just trying to make it past childhood diseases. This reality had to affect the writers of the day, that's all I meant.

I'd still rather live today - clean water, clean food, antibiotics, excellent medical facilities, great hygiene (assuming one has money and access I suppose :D ). I have had seven surgeries in my life and I would absolutely HATE life if I had to live without the surgeries. I should have died from one of them and I missed cancer twice with good medical care.....so I can imagine the WRETCHEDNESS (copying Keats here) I would have had to live with if I lived in the 1820's. Forget it. I would have been on laudanum.

Re: Keats and Buddhism?

PostPosted: Sun Jun 06, 2010 1:58 pm
by Malia
I hear you there, BrokenLyre. I've thought before that if my *parents* hadn't been born when they were (i.e. if we had been a 19th rather than a 20th/21st C. family, I would never have been born, as my mother would have surely died from appendicitis at age 6 or the scarlet fever she had not long after. And even if I had been born and grew up as I did, I would probably have not led the most comfortable life as I had a seizure disorder for most of my childhood and young adult life that produced symptoms that might have sent me to some basement room or a mental hospital back in the day (my seizures were in the temporal lobe and produced strange sounds and frightening sensations rather than convulsions). . . but were easily taken care of with anti-seizure medication in modern times.

Re: Keats and Buddhism?

PostPosted: Sun Jun 06, 2010 3:18 pm
by Raphael
Interesting family stories Broken Lyre and Cybele.
I think although back then losing people to those diseases and children dying was of course heartbreaking I think back then people had more courage than today. People get traumatised by silly things today! Have you seen the covers of celeb mags and listened to the contents of some pop songs?! People are mollycoddled today- youngsters have hissy fits because they cannot afford to get the latest trainers there and then or that their friend won them on a nintendo game.

Re: Keats and Buddhism?

PostPosted: Tue Jun 08, 2010 1:45 am
by Cybele
Raphael wrote:Interesting family stories Broken Lyre and Cybele.
I think although back then losing people to those diseases and children dying was of course heartbreaking I think back then people had more courage than today. People get traumatised by silly things today! Have you seen the covers of celeb mags and listened to the contents of some pop songs?! People are mollycoddled today- youngsters have hissy fits because they cannot afford to get the latest trainers there and then or that their friend won them on a nintendo game.


Spoiled children have always existed. True, there may be more of them now because spoiling a child has recently become so much more convenient. :)

I do agree with you, tho', that most people (particularly those in developed countries) haven't been "toughened" by adversity to the extent folks were in past centuries.

Re: Keats and Buddhism?

PostPosted: Tue Jun 08, 2010 7:18 am
by BrokenLyre
There is real truth to what you say Raphael & Cybele. Your comment reminds me of when I went to India in 2002. While I was standing outside a hotel, waiting for my ride, a 20-something Indian man stood nearby. I commented about how hot and humid it was, while I ate my hermetically sealed pop tarts (from America) and he said to me in a wonderful Indian accent, "You Americans are too delicate." It was quite funny to hear that.

Re: Keats and Buddhism?

PostPosted: Tue Jun 08, 2010 2:48 pm
by Ennis
All of this about how soft we are and losing children at an early age, etc. is true. Living in Keats's time would be much more difficult for us if we were somehow "blasted back" to the past then if we were born during his time (I know I'm stating the obvious; I'm not really this shallow-brained). I think I'd still prefer to live then than now -- except for my son, who would suffer tremendously before he died an early death. He has hemophilia -- severe defeciency. So I know where some of you are coming from.

Re: Keats and Buddhism?

PostPosted: Tue Jun 08, 2010 5:30 pm
by Raphael
BrokenLyre wrote:There is real truth to what you say Raphael & Cybele. Your comment reminds me of when I went to India in 2002. While I was standing outside a hotel, waiting for my ride, a 20-something Indian man stood nearby. I commented about how hot and humid it was, while I ate my hermetically sealed pop tarts (from America) and he said to me in a wonderful Indian accent, "You Americans are too delicate." It was quite funny to hear that.


He has to live with this type of heat all the time and will be used to it. :D

Re: Keats and Buddhism?

PostPosted: Tue Jun 08, 2010 5:35 pm
by Raphael
Ennis wrote:All of this about how soft we are and losing children at an early age, etc. is true. Living in Keats's time would be much more difficult for us if we were somehow "blasted back" to the past then if we were born during his time (I know I'm stating the obvious; I'm not really this shallow-brained). I think I'd still prefer to live then than now -- except for my son, who would suffer tremendously before he died an early death. He has hemophilia -- severe defeciency. So I know where some of you are coming from.


This reminds me of a chat I had with my Dad about a year ago. He was born in 1939 and so grew up on rations. He was a young man in the 1960s.He still loves the music of that time. I asked him if he thought it was a better time to live back then - did he prefer now or then? His reply surprised me- his answer was neither! So, what time did he wish to live in if he had the choice I asked- his answer surprised me- the 1800s!!! He said the 1800s if he was middle class and healthy though.
I will ask him this question again as since he had to have an operation on his leg and had to have numerous antibiotics and pain killers- he wouldn't be with us now if this had happened in the 1800s.

Re: Keats and Buddhism?

PostPosted: Tue Jun 08, 2010 8:35 pm
by Ennis
Raphael --

You know, that was one thing that drove Keats from medicine -- wanting "to do some good in the world," but not desiring to bring the pain that went along with the "healing". I can understand how a man of Keats's extraordinarily sympathetic nature would be hard pressed to operate on someone without the benefit of any anesthesia (sp?), except for a big swig from a "likker" bottle.

Re: Keats and Buddhism?

PostPosted: Tue Jun 08, 2010 8:53 pm
by Raphael
Ennis wrote:Raphael --

You know, that was one thing that drove Keats from medicine -- wanting "to do some good in the world," but not desiring to bring the pain that went along with the "healing". I can understand how a man of Keats's extraordinarily sympathetic nature would be hard pressed to operate on someone without the benefit of any anesthesia (sp?), except for a big swig from a "likker" bottle.



Yes, he must have seen some horrific sights! I think they must have used opium to make people unconcious sometimes though.
Hooray for anaesthetics eh? I am very glad of them when I go to the dentist!

Re: Keats and Buddhism?

PostPosted: Mon Jul 26, 2010 7:05 am
by Keats9264
I have an OLD Christmas book from the end of the 19th century. I got it to feel all warm and Christmasy. Man oh man is it depressing. Little poems about the angels taking the sick children etc. I was like: this is the most depressing CHRISTMAS book I've ever seen! So yeah, the illness an death was so much a part of their lives they couldn't even have a Christmas book without it!

Re: Keats and Buddhism?

PostPosted: Mon Jul 26, 2010 4:41 pm
by Raphael
Is it an American or British book?

Re: Keats and Buddhism?

PostPosted: Mon Jul 26, 2010 11:48 pm
by Cybele
Keats9264 wrote:I have an OLD Christmas book from the end of the 19th century. I got it to feel all warm and Christmasy. Man oh man is it depressing. Little poems about the angels taking the sick children etc. I was like: this is the most depressing CHRISTMAS book I've ever seen! So yeah, the illness an death was so much a part of their lives they couldn't even have a Christmas book without it!


Hey, even the simple bedtime prayer many of us learned as small children, "Now I lay me down to sleep. . . If I should die before I wake, I pray the Lord my soul to take."

:lol: I hated that prayer as a little kid -- I thought I was asking God to kill me in my sleep. :lol:

Seriously though -- I'm sure that prayer was a left-over from an earlier era.

Re: Keats and Buddhism?

PostPosted: Tue Jul 27, 2010 4:21 am
by Keats9264
Raphael - it's an American book.

Cybele - yeah, my mom thought it sounded scary too, so she changed it to: "Now I lay me down to sleep, I pray the Lord my soul to keep, keep me through the starry night, and wake me when the sun shines bright." I never heard the traditional one until I was older. Mom always said, "I changed it because I thought that was an awful thing to teach to children!" LOL

Re: Keats and Buddhism?

PostPosted: Fri Jul 30, 2010 4:10 am
by BrokenLyre
I like your mom's version a lot better - thanks. "if I should die before I wake" is a bit heavy for a 4 year old (when I learned it many years ago). My mom should have changed it.