Tag Archives: Literature

Philosophical Passage on Pinocchio


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One of my favorite parts about reading 12 Steps for Life: An Antidote to Chaos were the pop culture references Jordan Peterson threw out every once in a while.  Peterson would make references to Disney cartoons such as Sleeping Beauty or The Little Mermaid.  These colorful and beloved animations served for great evidence of the many points he made throughout each chapter.  Throughout the book, one movie he continuously brings up is Pinocchio.

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Image result for Pinocchio

At this point, I have to admit one thing right now – Pinocchio was one of my favorite Disney movies of all time.  The famous story of the wooden puppet who turns into a real boy was a classic staple in my VHS library.  It had adventure, drama, deceit, and one emotional ending scene.  I must have watched the movie over hundreds of times before I started middle school.  These days, I still remember the main storyline from beginning to end.

But once I read 12 Steps for Life: An Antidote to Chaos, I realized that Pinocchio had so much more going within its storyline.  Pinocchio was more than just a simple wooden puppet looking to become a real boy.

Get ready folks – this will become one trippy, mind-blowing topic right here.

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Here we go: Pinocchio is a wooden puppet who comes with strings, both literately and figuratively.  He literately has strings (being that he is a wooden puppet), but those strings are also imagery of what is holding Pinocchio back from becoming a real boy.  Pinocchio is tethered by strings, reminding him of his true identity as a wooden puppet.

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Geppetto looks into the night and notices the star.  He wishes upon a star (which is one of the songs within the movie) as a plea to make Pinocchio.  A star is basically a part of the eternity of the night sky.  That star is transcendent, something that is ultimate in the world.  This memorable scene represents Geppetto looking upon something transcendent – something so magnificent and breathtaking that you wish you could share it with everyone in the world.

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Pinocchio was set for his first day of school.  But throughout the film, he faces all these temptations thrown at him.  “Honest” John Worthington Foulfellow and Gideon the cat trick Pinocchio into joining Stromboli, only to be kidnapped as a way for profits.

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Later on, he gets tricked again by taking a trip to Pleasure Island.  He meets his new rebellious friend Lampwick during the trip, only to see him into a jackass (which, by the way, was one of the most cringing, disturbing scenes of my childhood).  Pinocchio gets served in the salt mines and even turns into a jackass as well, all in a place run by authoritarians.  Pleasure Island serves as the ultimate punishment for Pinocchio after he loses his way.

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All of this could have been avoided if he were to – wait for it – TELL THE TRUTH.  If only Pinocchio were telling truths and not lying all of the time, he would reach his ultimate transcendent goal: to become a real boy.  His shenanigans only led him to shock and terror, only to land into the bottom of a whale (that whale being Monstro, of course).  It was there that he faced his ultimate challenge against Monstro, only to end up dying in the process.

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Through his courageous act against fighting Monstro, Pinocchio reaches his transcendent goal of being a real boy.  All is well after his crazy shenanigans.

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It is a basic, yet philosophical tale that comes with major symbolisms and metaphors.  Pinocchio may be just another Disney movie, but it becomes so much than that once you dive deeper into the story.  Who knew that a book like 12 Steps for Life: An Antidote to Chaos could provide so much meaning from a simple cartoon like Pinocchio.

And there you have it – the deep-rooted philosophical storyline woven in within Disney’s Pinocchio.  Just remember to tell the truth in life or else you’ll end up in Pleasure Island.

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The Flood Control Act of 1965


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I truly enjoyed finishing up 12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos this past weekend.  Jordan Peterson wrote an amazing book showcasing many ideas for cutting through the chaos in life.  There were lessons, personal stories, and even references taken from pop culture.  What I was most surprised to find was a hidden PR nightmare being discussed briefly in one of the chapters.  That PR nightmare involves something called The Flood Control Act of 1965.

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The Flood Control Act of 1965 was enacted on October 27th, 1965.  It was authorized by the United States Army Corps of Engineers to design and construct numerous flood control projects around the country.  One of those projects included Lake Pontchartrain and Vicinity, which was the Louisiana Hurricane Protection Project in New Orleans.

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The main objective was improving the levee system that was holding back Lake Pontchartrain.  This system was to completed by 1978.  Forty years later, only 60 percent of the work was completed.  Coincidentally enough, Hurricane Katrina hit Louisiana on August 23rd-August 31st 2005.

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Image result for hurricane katrina

With the levee system not complete yet, Louisiana became an easy target for Hurricane Katrina.  Thousands of people were hit by the hurricane, many of them losing their homes in the process.  It has been over a decade since Katrina hit New Orleans and many residents are still rebuilding their lives.

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It was like a ticking time-bomb waiting to happen.  This PR nightmare started mere decades before Hurricane Katrina and it was only a matter of time before it came out.  If the Flood Control Act of 1965 was set on schedule, this PR nightmare would not have happened for the citizens of New Orleans.  Willful blindness and corruption took the city down.

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Who knew I would dig up this hidden PR nightmare from Jordan Peterson’s recent novel.  Either way, it made for a great post here at MakeSandcastlesNotWar.  That’s what makes reading books so fascinating — you never know what you will find out.

That’s all for today’s PR nightmare on the Flood Control Act of 1965.  This incident is one example from rule six – set your house in perfect order before you criticize the world.

Summer Reading #3 – 12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos


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Welcome back folks!  Hope everyone had a nice Labor Day weekend.  Always good to have that nice long weekend with a short week to follow with.  With this amazing weather we had in Massachusetts, I took up the time to catch up on more reading at the beach.

Which brings us to today’s summer reading session.  This next book was written by a well-known clinical psychologist and psychology professor at the University of Toronto.  He released hundreds of videos criticizing many aspects of society, gaining widespread media coverage around the world.  Today’s book is Jordan B. Peterson’s 12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos.

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12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos was written in January 2018 by Jordan Peterson.  The book chronicles 12 rules Peterson outlines for dealing with the chaos in life.  Each chapter is separated through one significant rule that will be discussed.  Some of these rules include ‘stand up straight with your shoulders back’ or ‘set your house in perfect order before you criticize the world’.

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During each chapter, he begins throwing personal examples out onto the table.  Some stories include his friends, families, and even people he connected with during his line of work.  This aspect not only make the book comical to read, but it also draws me more connected to some of the scenarios.

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After the personal stories are told, things start to get REAL interesting.  Peterson draws in references with every idea he is explaining.  Sometimes he refers to famous philosophers like Friedrich Nietzsche or people in the science world.  His ideas go so deep that they even refer back to the famous stories in religious history.

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One of my favorite parts of the novel is when he refers his ideas with pop culture.  He outlines the philosophy of stories such as Sleeping Beauty and Pinocchio (fyi, the story about Pinocchio is another mind-blowing post that I will discuss later this week!).  In any case, these culture references always refer back to the main idea of the chapter.  Whether it be the bible or The Simpsons (which he really did use as an example!), each element proved to be successful in articulating his points.

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Image result for jordan peterson 12 rules for life

Reading 12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos was truly an adventure itself.  It doesn’t discuss how life should be; rather, it delves into how you should prepare for life when things get chaotic.  The key idea of preparing for chaos is ORDER, which is discussed in many chapters of the book.  Order is a key antidote to CHAOS, and the title itself is a subtle hint as to what this book will be about.

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The world can be perplexing and complicated at times.  Reading through Jordan Peterson’s 12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos can help to sort the clutter within your life.  There are lots of simple, yet philosophical ideas to take away from each chapter.

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Check out Jordan Peterson’s 12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos.  Maybe reading this book will help you set your house in perfect order before you criticize the world.