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Southern Cross Review

Review of fiction, education, science,
current events, essays, book reviews, movie reviews, poetry and Anthroposophy

Number 37, October 2004

Yoga Lady © Peter Hegre

We cherish the progress in civilization since biblical times and long before. But there is a need and, indeed, accepted qualification. As I write, the United States and Britain are in the bitter aftermath of a war in Iraq. We are accepting programmed death for the young and random slaughter for men and women of all ages. So, overwhemlingly, it was in World Wars I and II. So more selectively since, and still at this writing, in Iraq. Civilized life, as it is called, is a great white tower celebrating human achievements, but at the top there is permanently a large black cloud. Human progress dominated by unimaginable cruelty and death.
I leave the reader with the sadly relevant fact: Civilization has made great strides over the centuries in science, health care, the arts and most, if not all, economic well-being. But also it has given a privileged position to the development of weapons and the threat and reality of war. Mass slaughter has become the ultimate human achievement.
The facts of war are inescapable - death and random cruelty, suspension of civilized values, a disordered aftermath. Thus the human condition and prospect as now supremely evident. The economic and social probems here described, as also mass poverty and starvation, can, with thought and action, be addressed. So they have already been. War remains the decisive human failure.

John Kenneth Galbraith - the last paragraphs of his new book: "The Economics of Innocent Fraud".

In the Editor's Page this month, instead of my ramblings, we offer the complete text of John Kerry's powerful testimony before the U.S. Senate about the insanity of the Vietnam war. This is a must read for everyone who will vote in the November elections as well as those who want to know what kind of stuff Kerry is made of.

One of the few objective articles about the Palestine-Israel situation we've found is by Walid Batrawi in "Current Events".

The Anthroposophy section this month includes a lecture by Rudolf Steiner, this time some of his idea about the social scene, and a biographical sketch by someone who knew him.

Last month's publication of "The Gospel of Mary" is followed now by another apocryphal gospel: Thomas.

The Fiction section continues Luise Rinser's novel, "Miryam" and my "Frequent Flyer", and also offers a new story by Mike Ingles and one of my own.

Tarjei Staume goes back in cinematic time to look at some of the great flics; and Bobby Matherne contributes a review of a Picasso biography by Mailer.

The Poems selected for the Poetry section couldn't be more different, but all three are great, each in it's own way.

If you would like to download the pdf version of SCR (easier to read and print), click HERE. You need Adobe Acrobat Reader.

You can find us under the Southern Cross constellation in the Traslasierra Valley, Province of Córdoba, Argentina. Visitors always welcome. Just follow the sign that reads: La Cruz del Sur. See you next time.

Frank Thomas Smith, editor

Jo Ann Schwartz, associate editor

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Editor's Page

Winter Soldiers - John Kerry's Testimony on Vietnam


Current Events

Letter from Ramallah
Walid Batrawi


Social Understanding

Rudolf Steiner

Rudolf Steiner:
a biographical sketch

Alfred Heidenreich


The Gospel of Thomas

The Gospel of Thomas and
the Hermeneutics of Vision

Lance Owens

A Hanging

George Orwell


Miryam - 3
Luise Rinser

The Frequent Flyer - 4
Frank Thomas Smith

Feeding the Bull
Mike Ingles

Frank Thomas Smith

Movie Reviews

Talkin' Old Classic Movies
Tarjei Straume

Book Review

Putting Soul into Science
by Michael Friedjung
Review by
Bobby Matherne


Gunga Din
Rudyard Kipling

Hymns to the Night

Late Ripeness
Czeslaw Milosz