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  The Ishmael Community: Exerpts from Daniel Quinn

Quotes from Daniel's Works

As you see, the so-called Problem of Evil doesn't exist for me. As I explained in Ishmael, what the gods know about good and evil is this: Whatever they do is good for one but evil for another, and it can't be otherwise. If the quail eats the grasshopper, then this is good for the quail but evil for the grasshopper. And if the fox eats the quail, then this is good for the fox but evil for the quail. The gods obviously can't make a rule like "No quail may eat a grasshopper" or "Quails deserve to be protected from foxes." Grasshopper, quail, and fox all live in the hands of the gods for a time, and not one of them has cause for complaint or disappointment. The same is true of us.

Providence

In his autobiography, Malcolm X said that at one point the role of the white race in human history came to him with great clarity: The white race is Satan. I was very struck with this way of thinking about things, though I knew that his identification was not a good mythological fit. Satan is inherently an outsider -- the common enemy of mankind, to be hated and feared as much by white people as by any other. His objectives are spiritual and otherworldly, totally unlike those of the white race. We didn't go to Africa to turn the natives into sinners, we went there to turn them into slaves. Satan isn't interested in wealth, territory, or temporal power--and the white race is interested in almost nothing else. Nevertheless, I had the feeling that Malcolm was onto something.

Providence



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