Tuesday, July 31, 2012

A story about stories, and writing, and truth:

The Dubner Maggid (wise man of Dubno) was famous for the parables that he told. No matter what he was asked by a student or guest, he would always respond with a story. One time, someone asked him why he always answers questions with parables and he said, “Let me tell you a story about that....”

I had heard that anecdote many years ago, and thought it was clever. I also thought that the story ended there. But I have learned that there is more to this story about the Maggid that explains his approach to questions and answers. According to the Rebbe:

Truth was walking down the street, and he was naked. Everywhere he went he caused a stir. People were extremely uncomfortable in his presence. After a short while, he was banned from almost every place and understandably so. He had a close friend though, and his name was Parable. Parable approached Truth and offered a suggestion. He said, “I have a suit that would fit you just fine. If you will wear it, then people will accept and be tolerant of you, and they might eventually grow to accept you!” He agreed to give it a try, and lo and behold it worked! 

So that's why writers tell stories -- so that truth can find a way to be seen and heard. 

For more about the Maggid, go here: parsha-story.blogspot.com 

  The old Dubno Synagogue

Monday, July 30, 2012

Leaving soon for Belgium for biking and barging and possibly slogging through the rain. Seeing a country on two wheels is an intimate adventure.

Sunday, July 29, 2012

Robert Frost writing advice:
"No tears in the writer, no tears in the reader. No surprise in the writer, no surprise in the reader."

I guess that explains why I always cry when I write.