Category Religion

David and Goliath

It’s interesting to listen to Malcolm Gladwell deconstruct the presumptions behind the story of David and Goliath. Rather than presenting it as one of our best known underdog stories he suggests that Goliath in fact never stood a chance. According to Gladwell this was never a fight between a very tall and mighty warrior and […]

Mayan Dwarf Liminality

Short-statured people, dwarfs and people with achondroplasia play a significant role in Maya mythology. It was believed that dwarfs lived together with the gods before humans existed. Because of this presumed divine proximity and their intimacy with the unknown, small-statured people were highly regarded. Dwarfs had elevated social roles that were steeped in cosmology and […]

Post-Growth / Post-Scarcity

Scarcity is the fundamental economic problem of having seemingly unlimited human needs and wants in a world of limited resources. Several cornucopians have explored the notion of the post-scarcity economy, with unlimited free goods, services and information. The most appealing aspect of most of these post-scarcity visions is that we don’t have to change our behaviour […]

Seneb & Bes

In ancient Egypt a remarkable number of dwarfs gained prestigious roles within the dynasty. This can be concluded from the remains of their lavish burials. Egypt’s best known dwarf was Seneb, which means healthy. His career is documented on the false door and the plinths of his statues, which record twenty titles including, beloved of the king, […]

Relic Paulina

The Dutch are among the tallest people in the world yet the smallest girl that ever lived was from the Netherlands. Johanna Paulina Musters’ extremely small stature, she was only 58 centimeters, her talent for acrobatics, singing and dancing, and the ability to speak several languages, quickly made her rise to international fame as a sideshow […]

Last Words Before Infinity

The Incredible Shrinking Man takes its name from a 1957 movie, based on a book by Richard Matheson. In it the protagonist Scott Carey slowly starts shrinking after having been exposed to radioactive pesticides. The film (and book) is about coping with this situation. Towards the very end of the movie, when Scott is getting […]