6 March 1957
The breakfast table chairs were decorated with the dazzle of white shirts and ties this morning – Kurt, Billy, and Nancy.
Of course, Kurt often wears a white shirt. But Billy and Nancy were all slicked up [too] for Honor Roll assembly at Collinwood this morning first and second period. Nancy wore her ruffled carioca blouse that Francis Klein gave her for Christmas, and Bill for the first time wore his Christmas tie from Timmy and Greg. Bill commented he thought he’d give Miss Axline a break. (He meant walk into the library this afternoon with a tie on. He wasn’t quite sure the head librarian would stand the shock of seeing her library page saunter up dressed up with soup and fish!)
Seems at the rehearsal yesterday Nancy did not understand she was to come up on stage when her name was called. She thought her name was being called to see if she were present. She kept raising her hand higher and higher, until the caller said, “We want you up here.”
Billy kidded her when he saw her at home. “How shall I face my friends!!” he exaggerated, mimicking!
Gary Moore (Lenten Guides, P. D.)
Quotes a Chinese wisdom: “The enemy is best defeated who is defeated with kindness.”
He goes on to say kindness isn’t softness. If it is it doesn’t cure anything at all. Tells the story of Ling making slurring remarks about Wong’s restaurant. Wong says: “Oh, I’m sure you must have misunderstood. Wong couldn’t possibly have said that. He’s too genuinely kind.”
Ling Toy was flabbergasted when he heard about this. Ling meant to be slurring. Ling could not stand up to Wong’s policy very long. – The two became friends.
Wong showed Gary Moore, back in the kitchen, a Chinese motto which hung there for Wong to see every day: ”The enemy is best defeated who is defeated with kindness.”
Oh yes! I almost forgot there was something else I meant to enter here – it is about Roman Catholic “confessional booths”.
Confession is good for the soul – this is true. But when the confessional booth is a private matter for the church only, to propagate its own power primarily – it is certainly questionable. The other Christian denominations who do not have confessional booths picking up gossip, rather having ministers who talk with people to guide them as best they can in their sorrows are at a disadvantage.
How to combat this?
Through letters to newspapers. This type of confessional – people’s problems of everyday life and thus be released, aired, and acted upon in the form of public opinion; and something can then be done to improve the lot of all humans regardless of race, color, or creed.
So long as the Roman Catholic confessional box is the only form of release, under the power of that church, it does not serve all. In fact – it is most unchristian, undemocratic and unhuman.
With the help of my creator, and with the wisdom given me, I do what I can see to do. That’s all anyone can do
After seeing Walt Disney’s program tonight these conclusions: (it was a program on the story of flight)
In a way the Chinese of years ago – the civilization that Marco Polo found – was a wise civilization – they forbade certain types of invention. Where the Chinese erred, however, was evident in this fashion: they didn’t better the lot of humans in their country.
The Chinese walled off their civilization, while forbidding certain types of knowledge. For instance – they knew of wine, but wine drinking was forbidden, etc. The fact remains, however, China was only a part of our world. As the rest of the world built boats and ventured forth – China remained within its walls. One cannot stem the surging tide of the world of communication and transportation closing in on us. As I watched the story of flight, my conversation with Helen Little this afternoon came back to me.
The world is shrunk so much since aviation, telegraphy, TV, etc. has so rapidly grown, it is no wonder we have so much mental illness. The industrial revolution, communication, transportation, flight has brought men, as I write to McDermott, into every “corner” of the world. Now we want to reach out into the “heavens” – man’s little old mythological, religious, superstitious “heaven”. Science has moved along so rapidly we just seem to have been lifted into the air personality-wise and we poor humans are bumping along personality-wise like the bumpy cross-country cartoons depicted by Walt Disney in his flight story on TV. No wonder human beings have lost their bearings. The pace of the last 100 years has been stepped up so much by invention, science, and mass production that maybe airplanes hold together but man is falling apart mentally.
As I watched Disney tonight I realized even more acutely that we of a generation of yesterday have been living, and will continue to live through tremendous, fast-paced, revolutionary upheavals caused by inventions and mass production.
That we become dizzy and off-center with all this speed of change, there is no doubt about. Our scientists must be directed to the feeling human. Enough of all this invention! It perhaps should not be stopped. Let it go on, but for the love of man’s welfare, it is absolutely urgently necessary to channel some of this brain matter into the human mind for equilibrium. Mental hygiene, social psychology, and social sciences are the tortuous pleading need of our era – an understanding of what is happening to us.
The young, bless the young, they are growing up with all this. Maybe it will be easier for them, maybe not. If this pace of science and invention carries through our new generation’s lives, we may still end up as a race of mumbling idiotic humans, counting our toes – back to the caveman of millions of years ago.
I am so glad our educational institutions are recognizing the terrific need for the social sciences because they will be humanity’s salvation.