In ancient Egyptian mythology the Ammit Beast was the Devourer, the Eater of Hearts. When you faced judgement for the deeds of your life in the sixth hour of the Duat, your heart -- the only organ not removed by the helpful embalmers -- was weighed against the feather of Ma'at. If your heart was too heavy with sin, Ammit would devour your heart and relegate your soul to to either nothingness, a hellish eterntity haunting your loved ones, or a profound and eternal sleep (the story varied in different dynasties, so Your Mileage May Vary). Though there's little more information about Ammit, a few sources indicate that this creature was female.+
The Ammit Beast keeps company with Thoth, the god who records the results in the Hall of Judgement. Think of Thoth as the official corporate scribe of The Two Lands. (This particular incarnation of the Ammit Beast also believes itself to be a writer.)
Other forms of Ammit's name: Amam, Ammut, Am-mit, Ammemet, Ahemait, Ab-she, Am-heh.
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And sure as hell, this little brat deserved to get spanked. He deserved whatever he got. This is the deluded little rube who really thought the future would be any better. If you just worked hard enough. If you just learned enough. Ran fast enough. Everything would turn out right, and your life would amount to something.
The wind gusts and dry grains of snow scatter down from the trees, each flake stinging against his ears and cheeks. More snow melts between the laces of his shoes.
"You'll see," the Mommy says. "This will be worth a little suffering."
This would be a story he could tell his own son. Someday.
The ancient girl, the Mommy tells him, she never saw her lover ever again.
And the kid is stupid enough to think a picture or a sculpture or a story could somehow replace anybody you love.
And the Mommy says, "You have so much to look forward to."
It's hard to swallow, but this is the stupid, lazy, ridiculous little kid who just stood shaking, squinting into the glare and the roar, and who thought the future would be so bright. Picture anybody growing up so stupid he didn't know that hope is just another phase you'll grow out of. Who thought you could make something, anything, that would last forever.
It feels stupid even to remember this stuff. It's a wonder he's lived this long.
So, again, if you're going to read this, don't.
This isn't about somebody brave and kind and dedicated. He isn't anybody you're going to fall in love with.
-- Chuck Palahniuk, Choke
"The infield banter rule is a response to the rampant homophobia of the typical American male. It's generally damned quiet in men's restrooms except for the noises that can't be avoided. There can be some idle chit-chat at the sinks among friends, or while walking through the door. Sometimes friends will talk at the urinals, but that's rare. More often, anyone speaking while in mid-stream or mid-grunt is studiously ignored on the theory that response is consent for further conversation with a stranger while holding your male member in your hand. The next step is anarchy and show tunes!"
"Dear diary. Today I was pompous and my sister was crazy. [...] [...] Today we were kidnapped by hillfolk, never to be seen again. It was the best day ever."
The List: Margaret Atwood answers the question, "Why do writers write?"
"Life is an unfoldment, and the further we travel the more truth we can comprehend. To understand the things that are at our door is the best preparation for understanding those that lie beyond."
"All formal dogmatic religions are fallacious and must never be accepted by self-respecting persons as final."
"Reserve your right to think, for even to think wrongly is better than not to think at all."
-- Hypatia of Alexandria
"Strange, indeed, that you should not have suspected that your universe and its contents were only dreams, visions, fiction! Strange, because they are so frankly and hysterically insane -- like all dreams: a God who could make good children as easily as bad, yet preferred to make bad ones; who could have made every one of them happy, yet never made a single happy one; who made them prize their bitter life, yet stingily cut it short; who gave his angels eternal happiness unearned, yet required his other children to earn it; who gave his angels painless lives, yet cursed his other children with biting miseries and maladies of mind and body; who mouths justice and invented hell -- mouths mercy and invented hell -- mouths Golden Rules, and forgiveness multiplied by seventy times seven, and invented hell; who mouths morals to other people and has none himself; who frowns upon crimes, yet commits them all; who created man without invitation, then tries to shuffle the responsibility for man's acts upon man, instead of honorably placing it where it belongs, upon himself; and finally, with altogether divine obtuseness, invites this poor, abused slave to worship him! . . ."
-- Mark Twain, The Mysterious Stranger
"Never pretend to a love which you do not actually feel, for love is not ours to command."
-- Alan Watts
“Love is the triumph of imagination over intelligence.”
-- H. L. Mencken
“The most important human endeavor is the striving for morality in our actions. Our inner balance and even our very existence depend on it. Only morality in our actions can give beauty and dignity to life.”
-- Albert Einstein
“Clever liars give details, but the cleverest don’t.”
"Beware the leader who bangs the drums of war in order to whip the citizenry into a patriotic fervor, for patriotism is indeed a double-edged sword. It both emboldens the blood, just as it narrows the mind. And when the drums of war have reached a fever pitch and the blood boils with hate and the mind has closed, the leader will have no need in seizing the rights of the citizenry. Rather, the citizenry, infused with fear and blinded by patriotism, will offer up all of their rights unto the leader and gladly so. How do I know? For this is what I have done. And I am Caesar." -- Julius Caesar