Headfarm: Stones as Means

D. Bon, again bon. Bon, Mister wise man. I hope you’ll take pleasure in this book I’d like to show you. It offers a fascinating list of magnetic stones. The problem is: Nobody knows for sure who has written the book and at what time. It’s said that Alexander the Great wrote a letter to his teacher Aristotle. He wrote about spectacular, but strange stones he found on his way to India. Modern scholarship has argued that parts of the text are coming from a novel, again a special novel, a novel which grew over centuries and found a wonderful form in Nizami’s The Book of Alexander the Great (known variously as the Sikandar Nama or Iskandarnama). The book was written ca. 1202, more than 100 years later than Marbod of Rennes’ (1035-1123) poem on magnets.
Handy (the man for today’ s problems at Headfarm): Why should I note this?
Realometer: Because of Christianity. It deduces from a certain text that man gains power over the world, over animals, plants, stones, everything which is under heaven.
Jab├Ęs: Man or woman?
Realometer: At this time women were regarded as inferior to men. Women were subjected to the will of men. At least in the medieval Christian context. According to Lynn White this is when the ecological crisis of today begins. The crisis is an effect of a special interpretation of the biblical text. With his lapidary Marbod of Rennes then introduces a new approach to stones. Stones become means. They become means which man uses to dominate the world under heaven.

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