Wrath of God


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Mar 20, 2000
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Parks,

I see your point and agree for the most part that the real leveling of society occured with WWI. We are only differing in how we see the effect of Titanic on society. You think it had a marginal effect. I think it was pivotal but not monumental in the long view, taking into consideration all other events of the 20th century.

But aren't you with me on the media impact? I mean, as far as I know, up until 1912 a disaster on the scale of Titanic, with all its media appeal, had not occured. People all over the world were united for the first time over a single catastrophic event. No other previous disaster on land or sea had impacted the world as Titanic did. It was the biggest news story ever until the war broke out 2 years later. It was then that the importance of the disaster began waning in the public mind only to return in another age wherein it was seen through the prism of nostalgia.

I believe that, however negligible the influence of the sinking of the Titanic was politically or financially, it nonetheless played a vital part in the emotional psyche of people from almost every nation and so in that sense the disaster readied the world a bit for the shock and havoc that the war was to bring . To my thinking Titanic was a portent of the enormous change that would rock society in the next few years.

As to Titanic being more of a marvel than Olympic - it was, to me, more a marvel because it was built to surpass her sister. If White Star felt they'd built the ultimate ship, why then a sister? It was all corporate push and shove for the biggest and the best and the grandest. And Titanic was the outcome of this striving for omnipotence.

As for technical comparisons of greatness between Olympic and Titanic, I don't think I am versed well-enough in the construction and history of these ships to make any comment. True, most surviving interior shots are those of Olympic rather than Titanic. And there are those fantastic maiden voyage newsreels of Oylmpic as opposed to the very sparse footage of Titanic. This certainly suggests a greater public interest in Olympic but I contend that this is due the circumstance of Titanic's short life; had Titanic lived she would have been just as photographed and filmed. After all was it not the huge publicity attending Olympic that attracted so many travelers to her larger and grander sister?

Which brings me to the subject of the ultra-rich and other celebs on board Titanic. There certainly is nothing that makes Astor or Stead or Millet or Harris more special because they were well-known figures but their presence on the maiden voyage of a brand new super-ship was newsworthy in the extreme and helped to humanize the story of the sinking later since so many people had heard of these men (and women).

Regarding psychic phenomena and spiritualism, everyone will believe as they will about that. I don't dismiss Robertson's Futility. I think it was an extraordinary piece of foresight. That's my opinion. Stead's writings which seem to foreshadow his fate are also immensely intriguing and even frightening. We all come to these subjects from our own perspective. The connection of the supernatural to Titanic will always be something to be considered or dismissed. It's up to each person to construe it however he or she wishes. We'll never understand it totally.

Now finally as to Titanic's being or not being a lesson from or "act" of God. My view is that the world-wide emotional fall-out signifies that a deep chord was touched. That it was such that people remained moved can be variously interpreted. We know that it was a non-issue during the war and into the 1920s. Horror and euphoria alternately filled these years so we can understand why Titanic held little attraction.

But after 40 years Titanic's story was new again and the books and movies of the 1950s and 60s are proof of a rekindled interest. Since then, and especially since 1997 with Cameron's film, Titanic has become part of the cultural landscape. So in a sense, Titanic's cautionary tale of foolhardiness and arrogance, has become a classic. Do we learn from it? Maybe not all of us. But I have. I think most of us here on this board have learned from Titanic. Just as I hope those who haven't learned the lesson, will now get the lesson of 9/11. They are essentially the same.

Also I think that the literal lessons of the safety regulations that were improved due to the sinking are important in themselves. How were they a help to man? Well since many hundreds of thousands of human beings then traversed the ocean every year, the setting up of the ice patrol and laws mandating more lifeboats and the mapping of safer shipping lanes were of major impetus.

But again we each have our own approach. You are right on many things here, maybe all of it. I think we agree on a basic premise. I just see it slightly differently.

Randy
 
Mar 3, 1998
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Randy,

We are speaking most of the same language. I agree with you about the emotional impact that the sinking had on the media, the public and even some of the government officials. The story of Titanic struck a chord in the public that reverberates to this day. In that respect, I believe that Titanic had an enormous effect on society.

However, I can only see Titanic being a portent of things to come with the benefit of hindsight. When I look at the world, and more specifically the shipping industry, in 1913-14, I don't see many far-reaching effects of the disaster. Certainly, the 1914 International Convention on Safety of Life At Sea was heavily influenced by the Titanic disaster, but the new regulations that resulted from that Conference were of relatively minor impact, when compared to the continuing business practices that influenced Smith to maintain speed through a known ice region in the first place. I have plenty of evidence to prove that lives have been saved by the regulations introduced or reinforced as a result of the Titanic disaster, but I also know of several disasters (first in the shipping world, then later in the airline industry which inherited the passenger traffic) that subsequently occurred because safety is not given as much emphasis as either comfort or schedule. That is one very major lesson that should have been learned from Titanic. But you know what...it's not really the fault of the shipping industry. The public demands it all -- comfort, speed, reliability and safety. And the squeaky wheel gets the grease. As with Titanic, nobody knocks themselves out over safety until a mishap occurs.

As far as Titanic surpassing Olympic is concerned, that's only publicity. The main goal of the triplets was to ensure a consistent Big Ship service. Three ships were needed to keep the flow going on the North Atlantic. Ismay hedged his bets a bit by committing to only two, in order to give him time to assess the public acceptance of Olympic. With business looking favourable, he would later exercise the option for the third ship. I would wager that Ismay's concern was more on how to make Titanic as different as possible from Olympic for a negligable sum of money than making real and substantiative improvements with each successive sister. I see evidence of this in the differences we have been able to discern between the two.

Much has been made of the alterations made to Olympic and Britannic after Titanic sank. I am not impressed with the changes made...they smack (to me, at least) of knee-jerk engineering. As a matter of fact, it is my contention that Britannic was lost because of the reluctance by White Star to re-engineer the internal subdivision of the ship. I accuse the free movement of water inside the new double skin of contributing to Britannic's starboard list, while the jammed WT door was a design flaw left uncorrected, even after Titanic's experience. We all know how well the WT bulkhead extensions worked.

I'm not sure I understand your point about the rich and famous aboard. Certainly, their presence adds a dash of panache to the story. Readers all over the world recognised the names, which helped the personalisation of the tragedy to cross borders. But, as I mentioned earlier, the aftermath of the disaster seemed to confirm the dignity and humanity of the Western elite. According to contemporary accounts, the rich Anglo-Saxon elite, which included both captains of industry and Old World nobility, died nobly. The emigrants, especially those of Italian or Chinese descent, were depicted as crazed or deceitful. Titanic seemed to exemplify and promote the stereotypes of the Gilded Age. In that respect, I would see Titanic as the last true event of the Gilded Era, rather than the first event of whatever era we entered into when we started killing one another in great numbers. In my view, I don't see Titanic as a wake-up call but rather as a last dying gasp.

Essentially, though, you're correct about us agreeing on the basic premise. We could both be right or both be wrong (I doubt one view is superior to the other), because individuals take what they will from the Titanic disaster. It's probably fitting that nothing about the event is clear and unambiguous...by being somewhat vague and contradictory, there is plenty of room for interpretation, for each to find what they're looking for. But, is this God's will, or is that someone's interpretation being forced on us? That's the question I posed to the group when I started this thread.

Parks
 
Mar 3, 1998
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I'm giving up this thread for the time being. I have a re-enactment event this coming weekend and need to shift gears from Titanic historian to Afrika Korps panzergrenadier. You guys have fun while I go hunt Sherman tanks in the sand.

Parks
 
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Ashley Regan

Guest
Hi All,

The belief of Judeo-Christians is that God takes an active part in human history. Whether we believe in God or not (I'm sure he/she will be heart broken to learn people don't believe), isn't really the issue if we become too arogant and "fly in God's face," with our claims of superiority than we may expect some nasty consequences from God.

Olympic while also being a liner like Titanic may have begun its life with someone saying: "God bless this ship and all who sail in her." Perhaps that's why she had a nice safe life rather than hubris boasting about her invincability. Even an athiest wold be wise not to anger what may or may not exist with proclamations that will surely beard a lion in his den.

If God's wrath was at work here it would be a very tempting place to reveal itself. Titanic was a symbol of an age that had assumed that science and technology along with vast capitol could overcome nature in all ways, land, sea and air. The fact that she sank by colliding with a piece of ice rather than another ship or torpedo something manmade is interesting in itself.

Ashley
 
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lisagay harrod

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Ashley,

Your last paragraph really resonated with me...remember that old margarine commercial?

"Don't fool with Mother Nature..."

She'll kick your butt.

Cheers,
Lisa Harrod
 
Mar 3, 1998
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This is why I shouldn't check on the list after I've said goodbye:

Ashley, Stephen Cameron documented the report that Mrs. Florence Ismay said quietly from her seat in the reviewing stand as the ship was released down the slip, "I name this ship the Titanic, and may God bless her and all who sail in her." Are you saying that wasn't good enough for God? That He was impressed more by a flippant remark from a deck hand than the quiet prayer by the owner's wife?

Again, the public claims about unsinkability were
spoken about both liners. We have no record of hubris relating to Olympic because Olympic didn't sink. Maybe God's attention was focused elsewhere in 1911.

<font color="#006600">Titanic was a symbol of an age that had assumed that science and technology along with vast capitol could overcome nature in all ways, land, sea and air."

Again I ask, why Titanic? Why not the first of her kind, Olympic? Why even Olympic? Why not one of the Kaiser's ships? Who picks these symbols, anyway? You mentioned that Titanic was a symbol of man's conquest of land, sea and air...what were the land and air counterparts to Titanic?

If Man truly offends God with faith and confidence in technology, then why did NASA enjoy 24 successful missions before a space shuttle blew up? Was it because we were so overconfident that we put a schoolteacher aboard? Well, we learned a lesson...no more schoolteachers aboard space shuttles. Evidently, God didn't mind rich people buying tourist flights aboard the Mir space station.

As far as running into an object of Nature is concerned, check out the IIP page that lists all the ships lost due to ice. Titanic wasn't unique...ships running into ice was a frequent occurrance which continues (with lesser frequency, thank God) to this day.

Let me ask a different question. Are we "arrogant" in visiting the Titanic wreck? Oooh boy, here's a whole 'nuther contentious thread in itself. Why hasn't God doled out one of His "nasty consequences" there? We even make it easy for Him...legacy Soviet technology poking around a mangled wreck in the dark more than two miles below the surface.

Before anyone says again how "arrogant" we were with Titanic, I would like an explantion of exactly how we were being arrogant. I would also like that explanation to be given in context; i.e., what makes the "arrogance" of 1912 any different than the "arrogance" of the 1930s or 1950s or 1980s, etc.? A statement like the one you made, Ashley (and you are reiterating what quite a few authors have put into print), means nothing without context. Taken at face value, all your statement tells me is that God is petty (not Petty is a god, as some NASCAR people believe)...taking His vengeance out on 1500 souls because of one flippant remark. I like to think that God has more of a sense of humour than that.

How does Man advance technologically without exhibiting arrogance? Aren't we supposed to feel that we can overcome Nature with Science; otherwise, why would anyone in their right mind climb into a space capsule, a pressurised jetliner, a deep-sea submersible or a Ford Explorer SUV (that last one may be a bad example)? Or can we fix the problem by just not verbally challenging God before boarding?

Lisa,

If we hadn't fooled with Mother Nature, then we'd still be wearing fig leaves today. By the way, the commercial actually said, "You can't fool Mother Nature," not "Don't fool with Mother Nature." The difference in meaning is not subtle. The point of the ad was that a brand of margarine (a man-made concoction) had done just that, convincing Mother Nature that she had eaten real butter. The commercial ended with "Butter ... no, better. Butter ... no, better." I don't recall if Imperial Margarine was ever struck down for their arrogance.

I'd like to continue, but I have run out of time. If nobody else picks up on this, I'll be back Monday.

Parks
 
Oct 28, 2000
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God himself didn't have to sink Titanic. People were fool enough to do it themselves. God wept.

-- David G. Brown
 

James Smith

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I agree with David Brown, but in the interest of discussion, I'll throw out a couple of random thoughts. I won't offer proof, because I don't believe most of them. But at any rate, here goes:

1) What if it were punishment directed against JP Morgan for his dishonest business tactics? If this was the case, then it would have to be one of the Olympic class to achieve maximum effect. The Titanic disaster forced Olympic out of service for a costly refit, and even then I wonder if it wasn't affected by a sort of stigma--and she was taken out of service prematurely, as Mark Chirnside has indicated on another thread. Titanic's loss made Britannic all the more valuable to White Star, and gave Morgan's interests a double-whammy when she sank (of course Morgan was dead by then . . . hmm.)

2) Punishment for US and British imperialism? One would wonder why the Germans and French didn't get divine retribution as well. But then, the Germans lost all three of their biggest ships following WWI, and the French eventually lost the Normandie . . .

3) Maybe a bunch of people on God's bad-list just happened to be on the same ship, and there was an iceberg handy, and He thought ". . . what the heck?" If this were the case, than it would have just been chance that all those people happened to choose the Titanic (before I get attacked for insulting the memory of the victims: I DO NOT BELIEVE THIS. I'm merely throwing out ideas here.)

4) I personally believe that God works on an individual basis, but in order to do so often uses events that affect thousands at a time. 1500 lives were lost that night, but how many other lives were changed? Could some have been changed for the better? Could some people have been drawn closer to God through the soul-searching that the accident inspired? This really doesn't answer the question of "why did it have to be the Titanic?" It would just have to do with who was on the ship, who was involved in running her, and so forth--the thousands of details that no human (or even computer) is capable of compiling.

That's all I can come up with for now. If asked for my personal opinion, I would lean in the direction of option number four but would specify that I do not believe that God caused the Titanic disaster--humans did. And humans could have prevented it, had they been more careful. God can't help us if we don't do everything within our power to help ourselves.

Jim Smith
 
Mar 20, 2000
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Parks,

You've explained your views perfectly. Everyone sees your point. But let's keep in mind that, while you've made some valid and thought-provoking observations here, there is another side equally valid and of merit.

Your challenge to those of us who feel Titanic was an historical turning point divined by God is really one that, to address it at all, requires faith IN God. Your questions are essentially religious ones. Why did God do this? Why did he choose that? What is the difference in this and that in the eyes of God? All of them great philisophical questions which can just as easily be asked of any event in history. But none of these can be answered unequivocally by any mortal. I don't know if you are a believer in God. It's not clear to me from your comments. Maybe I've missed it. Have you stated your belief in God? If not, it might explain why you feel as you do.

None of us here can give you an answer as to why God did or does anything. But to most of those of us who believe in the Christian God - this is my vantage point; I know nothing of the Jewish faith or of Buddhism, etc - we accept that God is in everything that occurs in our lives and that his will for us in this world is not to be questioned.

Now to your comment on the Space Shuttle Challenger disaster. Forgive me, but I think you are being flippant here. Surely you know that the reason for the disaster was negligence and greed. I think this has been well established.

So how was the Edwardian age's arrogance more so than that of the 1930s,'50s, or '80s? Well, for one thing the class system of pre-1914 was more than merely rigid and uncompromising, it was disgustingly unjust, particularly along racial and gender lines. And children also were without rights and were abused horrendously in the work- place. This suffering was entirely due to the all-pervading power of the rich in commerce and the laws they were enabled to set because of their influence.

The rich were then TRULY rich (especially in the US prior to the income tax law) and their lives more ostentatious than ever before in history. The general reading public sanctioned this state of being by following with relish the exploits of the Royals and of American grandees like the Vanderbilts and Astors.

By contrast the 1930s was a humbled world. Society had survived the war but not without fundamental widespread changes. Class, gender, and race prejudices were being confronted. The world was gripped by the worst financial depression ever. It was not a time of arrogance but of recovery and hope.

The 1950s was a time of ultra-conservative, homespun good humor on the surface but with old demons of racial bigotry and political intolerance smouldering beneath. It was not a time of arrogance either but one of a subtle slow transition into the 1960s-70s, a time of great ferment and upheaval, both in the trenches and at home.

Freedoms were being won by the disenfranchised. Our world was being cleansed of its sins. Modern culture springs from this time. Many of us here on this board were born during these years of revolution, assassinations, and war. It was not a time of arrogance but one of rebirth.

At the outset, the 1980s was a return briefly to 1950s standards of morality and expectations. But again I don't see the decade as an era of arrogance, not absolutely. I see it also as a time of transition. Evil regimes like communism were faltering. Peace was coming to the world at last(so we thought!). In the meantime a disease called AIDS was searing apart humanity and we all were having to reexamine our compassion for the minorities who seemed most affected. This was a time in which the world was purging itself of hatred (again so we thought!).

But back to the early 20th century. Yes, Edwardian society WAS tremendously jaded and over-ripe for a little Heavenly whipping.

There was beauty above but filth below. It was a time of incredible conceit and naivete. The Titanic's famous elite reflect these attitudes just as her poor and underprivelged reveal the unfair,unhappy truth behind the gilt and colored glass.

It WAS a time of arrogance and the Titanic incapsulated it more than any other event of the era. Moreover Titanic's destruction was the first sign that the indulgent, indifferent way of life that had brought the ship and her sisters into being was facing its end.

Randy
 

James Smith

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Dec 5, 2001
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Hi Randy!

I agree that there was a high degree of social injustice during the Edwardian period, but I wonder if things have really changed all that much. I spent two years in Brazil, with people who lived in literally shacks. I saw people go to mining camps owned by Americans and Europeans, forced to spend weeks away from their families at a time under threat of being fired if they didn't. There are people in Belem and Sao Luis who eat only the fruit that has fallen off of the mango trees in the downtown sections of those cities. Ten year old boys become the primary breadwinners in their families by selling popsicles in the street for about a nickel each. Meanwhile, in the good old US of A, I've just accepted a summer job with a pest control company where I'll earn more money than the average Brazilian earns in ten years.

Personally, I feel that the social injustices of 1912 were no worse than today. The difference is, we've swept them under the carpet so that we can sleep at night. The social injustices may not stare us in the face, but they are there.

I'm not trying to make those of us who live in first-world countries feel guilty, and I don't necessarily advocate a global wealth redistribution plan. I just don't see our society as morally superior to that of 1912.

Jim Smith
 
May 8, 2001
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I commend everyone for remaining so civil in this thread. I saw the title and thought, "OH NO here we go again." It is a thought provoking question to say the least, and you all have very good arguments. Here is my two cents worth.

Parks asked, >>>Are we "arrogant" in visiting the Titanic wreck?<<<.... Or is this a humble reminder of proclaiming that we were better than God, to see the biggest and best that man could come up with in 1912, sitting at the bottom of the ocean?

Hey Parks. Where did you go for this reinactment? My house is in Pattons backyard. If you drive through the Joshua Tree National Park, you end up At Chariaco Summit where the General Patton Museum is located. Quite a few tanks there, including a few that they had just uncovered in the desert out here. Have you ever been there?
Colleen
 
May 5, 2001
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> Encyclopedia Titanica Message Board: Collision / Sinking Theories: Wrath of > God? > -------------------- -------------------- -------------------- > > Posted by Yuri Singleton on Tuesday, 23 April, 2002 - 4:06 am: > > I really must disagree. I simply don't see any involvement of God, or > any other supernatural phenomenon regarding the fate of Titanic. IMHO, > the entire disaster was the product of miscommunication, poor > situational awarness, and unusual weather conditions. And top it off > with some really bad luck that night. > > > > > > > > > > > > > > > > > > > > > > > > -------------------- -------------------- -------------------- -------------------- ------------------ >

I don't think for a minute that anyone disagrees that Titanic was an accident waiting to happen, I also do not believe that Titanic wasn't a harbringer of extremely bad luck on the night of April 14th, 1912.

It was really NOT my intention to bring God into this discussion but someone else did so I couldn't ignore it. What seperates Titanic from any other historical event in history?..Hell, more people died at Pearl Harbor...we had no more control over that than we did with this one.

Something in our psychological profiles permits us to bypass some historical events while indulling others in our minds forever:

JFK, Pearl Harbor, TITANIC, Challenger.......It is unceasing and never ending.....

I'm not saying God sank the Titanic because his ability to sink it was in question (Euphamism for a "DARE"), I am merelt tossing on the table a theory based on someone's claim that he couldn't, that's all.

Regards, Bill >
 
Mar 28, 2002
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My tuppence worth -

Lighten up, Parks, Ashley made a valid point and I think you should take it in the context with which it was meant. No-one knows why this, or anything else happens and to attempt to belittle or brush aside divine intervention as a "contributing factor" is plain arrogance. Even as a non-religous person, I would never be blinkered into believeing that everything that has, is and will happen can be explained purely by things which we laughingly think we have total understanding and control over.

Cheers,

Boz
 
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Well, I for one would like to try and look past the myths and try to understand the reasons behind the decisions that caused Titanic to founder. "God's vengeance" is not good enough for me. I also want to see the disaster in the appropriate light...to assert that Titanic caused such a fundamental shift in Man's thinking overlooks a slew of historical events that followed. If anyone believes that the causal factors for World War I weren't already in place before the Titanic disaster, then I believe they've got another think coming.

Well, this is my rant. Maybe I shouldn't have brought it up in the first place. I was probably wrong to describe Titanic as a Tower of Babel, when the true Tower of Babel is really this list. We strove too close to the truth behind Titanic and God responded by causing us all to speak in different tongues.

Well Parks, my respect for you is ever reaching and I was not attempting to use this forum to bring the lord to the forefront of The Titanic disaster, as I am not much for discussing religion because I consider it Rhetorical and Argumentive, you can argue about it with someone for hours but if they have a set way of religion, your odds of making them see things your way is slim and none.

What I was attempting to do was add one more theory to the mix because to be honest with you, THAT particular statement made by that particular deckhand and the fact that The Big T Sank on that voyage, made me really start to wonder if D.I. had something to do with it but I DO think it was nothing more than Man's arrogance and greed to get Titanic over here quickly and with plenty of fanfare, even if it was at the expense of 1500 paying customers and the 10 million dollar ship herself. At this point however, it is safe to say the religious point is moot and will never be resolved or proven or disproven...but I wanted to get it out there anyways....

Bill
 
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Ashley Regan

Guest
Hi Everyone,

Parks, I felt like a bimbo after reading your comments to my posting. My college professors like to make those kind of comments in my papers. I'm sure you didn't mean it that way:)

I was going to just fade into the background (like I do as an extra anyway), but thought better about it.

I personally believe that God is all there is and there isn't anything else regardless of appearances. God in the Bible isn't always what we would like him to be, kind, loving and merciful. The Old Testament is full of events that rank higher in the seemingly gratuitous loss of life than Titanic's 1500 people or even the tragic events of 911's death toll. Yes, God does have a mean streak and wiping out entire people's just because of a slight isn't unusual. So a comment made or a state of mind being expressed about some "invincible" ship might well draw heavenly thunderbolts!

The Holocaust victims put God on trail and found him guilty of letting them suffer and die without seemingly just reasons. Pardon me but I didn't invent God this way, its the evidence of 3000 years of history and human experience with the Judeo-Christian deity that I reference when the thread asks the question: "God's Wrath." My personal feelings favor a nicer God, but that too is just my desire to think of a deity that wouldn't allow his chosen people to die in gas chambers or a handful of voyagers to drown and freeze to death because someone said something that ticked him off.

Titanic was also the results of bad luck, complacency and being at the wrong place at the wrong time. The deck was stacked heavily against her from the start its probably a wonder anyone survived when you look at all the problems that singly could have led to disaster let alone collectively. I do think our fascination with her is a key to something kindred in the human experience that calls out to us to remember Titanic like Circe and the Lorelei of legends to beware.

Titanic still challenges people to question their assumptions in terms of critical analysis of the facts not to blindly accept the hipe and spin. Titanic calls to us from her waterery grave and says don't allow oursleves to be trapped by drawing false conclusions about our world and accepting what others want us to beleive. This Message Board is proof of that alone with hundreds of threads that challenge pre-conceived ideas and theories about every aspect relating to Titanic. God's Wrath is just another conclusion that can be drawn about Titanic that may or may not stand the light of day or the test of time.

I'll fade into the background now:)

Ashley
 
Aug 29, 2000
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Religion, politics, and women were always topics polite society agreed were forbidden topics for dinner conversation in days past! "Man proposes- God disposes" is an old adage as well. Every organized religion has its own spin on predestination, Fate, and divine intervention. Speaking only from one perspective, my own instruction is that FREE WILL is at the center of the Christian core. The example for correct and godly living is clearly outlined in the person of Christ. The Ten Commandments furnish the laws by which we are to live with our neighbor. But the individual must make the choice of his OWN free will- God is not forcing the choice down one's throat. The consequences for our personal actions-or lack of them will be judged on the Last Day- be it greed, negligence in putting enough lifeboats aboard, concern for steerage safety, preferential treatment for the upper classes, carelessness in safety measures.- So many of the disaster postcards have strong religious- and nearly always Christian themes featuring crosses and Christ, Nearer My God to Thee- in the case of the Empress of Ireland, God Be with You Till we Meet Again, -and other hymns of being reunited with God. This is an intriguing juxtiposition if one feels God Himself is responsible for the disaster in the first place in order to make a point to a generation. I espouse the notion that man(women included too of course) is quite responsible for his/her own actions, arrogance, oversight, negligence, etc.- and often the result of these shortcomings of human nature and behavior, is a pitiful awareness of his fraility, inadequacy and woeful unpreparedness. The need for a faith in something greater than oneself is then all too well indicated. This is just my own opinion- and I daresay, that of the conservative view of many Christian denominations.
 
Aug 29, 2000
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Forgot to include mention of Hardy's immortal lines on Titanic, Convergence of the Twain- which is certainly relevant to this thread of discussion. God most certainly creates the "Sinister Mate" in the form of the iceberg- and man creates her partner in the shape of the ship. The collision of these two "hemispheres of one august event" seem to be in retribution for man's vaingloriousness- according to Hardy's view. In any event- it is my favorite verse on the subject and worth having a look- hope the link will work.
http://www.library.u toronto.ca/utel/rp/p oems/hardy8.html
http://www.victorian web.org/victorian/au thors/hardy/dean1.ht ml
 
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lisagay harrod

Guest
Parks,

Thank for correcting my misquote of the Imperial Margarine commercial. If it was your intention to make me feel chagrined, congratualations! I feel silly, and a bit wary of further posting on this particular thread, but I will anyway.

The point I was attempting to make (however poorly constucted in your opinion) is that regardless of man's technological advancements nature continues to be a force to be reckoned with.

I live in KS. Dispite dual-doppler, Nexrad, and all the other weather forcasting technologies available, and readily used in this part of the country, when the sirens go off I scurry to a basement just like the rest of my Midwestern counterparts. Nature reduces us to the same level as a bunch of barking prairiedogs.

The feeling of cowering, in what is basically a hole in the ground, waiting for chaos to pass over your head, is humbling. You feel frightened, exposed, and very aware of God. Kinda like wearing a figleaf...

Best wishes on your re-enactment!

Lisa Harrod
 

Inger Sheil

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Feb 9, 1999
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Parks, you've copped it again - another admonishment to lighten up! I always have to scratch my head at these - guess I just know you as one of the quirkiest, most challenging thinkers on the board, blessed with the most wicked sense of humour, and this idea of you as in any way dour sits very much at odds with that. I do appreciate what I take to be your motivation in posting a thread that most would have steered clear of initiating - you're a braver man than me, Gunga Din, for even broaching this. Religion and politics are two topics I save for intimate pub stoushes with mates. However, it's in keeping with your desire to challenge people and get them thinking out of the box to tackle this subject. I thought your last post above was an appropriate entry into the dialogue, and I've read it with interest - as I have posts such as those by Lisa and Ashley. Lisa, I honestly don't think Parks meant to make you feel chagrined. In my experience, Parks has a fairly upfront, unsugarcoated approach to the exchange of ideas. It may take some getting used to, but I've found it most rewarding - he gives it to you straight, but politely. It's quite refreshing! I prefer it to either being patronised or coddled, two writing voices that are far too common in the on-line community. Likewise, Ashley, I don't think Parks or anyone else here could be under the misapprehension that you're a bimbo - Parks wouldn't bother engaging in a debate with you if he thought you were 'fluffy', if you know what I mean.

~ Inger
 
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