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funeral of a great myth?

Comprising most of Lewis' writings.

funeral of a great myth?

Postby gameld » 13 Nov 2009, 08:05

does anyone know of a url that has the full text of "funeral of a great myth"? legitimate only please. is it public domain yet?
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Re: funeral of a great myth?

Postby rusmeister » 13 Nov 2009, 17:44

I wouldn't hold my breath. The parasites at the Lewis estate will do everything they can to prevent it.
Copyright law has shifted from being a genuine protection of authors during their lifetime and the time necessary for their kids to grow up into something that corporations that have nothing to do with the families or those concepts abuse and abuse and abuse. So Winnie-the Pooh has been prostituted long after the death of Milne, so Lewis's works are being milked by people who are no relation to him at all, and denying their long-deserved entry into public domain.
If you find one, good luck! Such requests are quickly quashed by the rapacious raptors of legal land on this site. (I apologize for the application of alliteration...) :wink:
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Re: funeral of a great myth?

Postby ladysherlockian » 25 Feb 2010, 17:01

Please don't break copyrights... If you are a Christian, breaking copyrights e.g. downloading a book which is not yet in public domain, is a mortal sin, the same as stealing. I used to do so myself, but then I learned it was a mortal sin and had to delete most of my e-books. I just want to warn you not to make the mistake I made. Piracy is very addictive and it's difficult to put an end to it. I don't know if it is a sin in other religions, but it definitely is in the Catholic Church. Maybe it would be a good topic for discussion?
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Re: funeral of a great myth?

Postby rusmeister » 26 Feb 2010, 04:59

ladysherlockian wrote:Please don't break copyrights... If you are a Christian, breaking copyrights e.g. downloading a book which is not yet in public domain, is a mortal sin, the same as stealing. I used to do so myself, but then I learned it was a mortal sin and had to delete most of my e-books. I just want to warn you not to make the mistake I made. Piracy is very addictive and it's difficult to put an end to it. I don't know if it is a sin in other religions, but it definitely is in the Catholic Church. Maybe it would be a good topic for discussion?


A lot of what is called 'piracy' is bad - that is, immoral. I wouldn't claim otherwise. But some copying isn't.

It may be that the Catholic Church defines sin as "breaking the law" - but I don't think so. In any event, morality and law are not necessarily connected. I learned THAT by moving to and living in a country where they are not to a much greater extent than we anglo-types are used to. Not to appear sophistic, but an attitude that law equals morality and is necessarily moral and determines what is sin and what isn't is one that could be used to justify full-scale tyranny. Many actions are between a person and God; and if it is manifestly clear that the law IS moral then it would probably be considered a sin. But when said laws are twisted out of their moral base, it becomes questionable. By no means necessarily justifiable, but questionable. And if one finds, in a clear conscience, that there is nothing immoral in breaking a particular law, then it probably isn't. This is where an external check, second opinions from priests or ministers are helpful. But simply saying that disobeying a law is immoral is not saying a moral truth.

Put another way, we call people revolting against their government rebels - unless they win, in which case we call them revolutionaries. Or yet another way, Christians spent the first 300 years of their existence breaking the law.

In the given case, I'd refer to my previous post and insist on taking the abuse of copyright law into account.
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Re: funeral of a great myth?

Postby agingjb » 26 Feb 2010, 08:51

If, for instance, Mere Christianity is regarded as a valuable spiritual guide, then the fact that it is not yet freely available on the net might require some explanation by its owners to its devotees.
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Re: funeral of a great myth?

Postby ladysherlockian » 26 Feb 2010, 11:00

I have found the information that piracy is a mortal sin in an "examination of conscience" form, which listed mortal sins under a special heading. I did not want to sound as if I was equaling the legal rules with moral rules. There are some things which are legal but immoral e.g. adultery is not a crime in a legal sense, but it is a mortal sin. I'm sorry for the misunderstanding, maybe it is because English is not my native language. Of couse moral, Christian law and human-made law are two different things, and when there is a law which is immoral e.g. legal abortion or as it was in the history of the USA, racial segragation, then it is a duty of a Christian to break such an evil law. And anyway, in my country downloading copyrighted material for your own personal use is not a crime, only uploading and selling such material. So the law says it is not very serious thing(I mean downloading), but in the eyes of the Catholic Church it is the same as stealing. I wonder how it is in other Christian denominations?
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Re: funeral of a great myth?

Postby rusmeister » 27 Feb 2010, 04:47

ladysherlockian wrote:I have found the information that piracy is a mortal sin in an "examination of conscience" form, which listed mortal sins under a special heading. I did not want to sound as if I was equaling the legal rules with moral rules. There are some things which are legal but immoral e.g. adultery is not a crime in a legal sense, but it is a mortal sin. I'm sorry for the misunderstanding, maybe it is because English is not my native language. Of couse moral, Christian law and human-made law are two different things, and when there is a law which is immoral e.g. legal abortion or as it was in the history of the USA, racial segragation, then it is a duty of a Christian to break such an evil law. And anyway, in my country downloading copyrighted material for your own personal use is not a crime, only uploading and selling such material. So the law says it is not very serious thing(I mean downloading), but in the eyes of the Catholic Church it is the same as stealing. I wonder how it is in other Christian denominations?


Thanks!
Well, in Orthodox Christianity, we are pretty far from legalism - these things tend to devolve to the formula "Ask your priest". Orthodoxy looks like individualism next to the jurudical approach of the RCC. But it's mainly because absolutes really are surrounded by relatives, and individual situations sometimes do need to be taken into account. Where I live, there are many contradictory laws on the books, and good people can be found guilty of anything the government wants to find them guilty of. Most people are technically guilty of something, and this makes an attitude to law as to one of morality pretty much impossible.

I don't think there's any special problem with your language, and I'm an ESL (EFL) teacher. Where are you from and where do you live?
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Re: funeral of a great myth?

Postby ladysherlockian » 28 Feb 2010, 12:54

After English philology I am supposed to use English language well, but it is not always the case :wink: I have also been taught to be an English teacher, even though it is not really what I would like to do in my life. I wanted to study English and I chose teachers college as it was in my home city :lol: But my friends who studied there did not want to be teachers either. I think that few of the people who go to such colleges do it because they want to be teachers. Most of them believe that teacher's qualifications may come in handy :wink:
What I really want to be is a literature translator,though sometimes it seems to me that I might enjoy teaching as well...

I live in Poland, in a rather small but cosy city. What I understand from your profile is that you come from Russia. What part of Russia are you from?

To return to the topic, where I live books in English are either difficult to get or expensive. I have dreamed about being able to read books in English since my early childhood(I think the books about Anne of Green Gables really made me so interested in English language and culture - I loved the books as a little girl and I still sometimes return to them as the beginning of my love to English) and now it would be sad to give up reading in this language after I spent most of my life learning and studying it. This is why I became interested in ebooks and in fact in this way I read some of the books which are now my favourites. I hate reading books written by English authors in translations to my native Polish. I feel I'm wasting time doing this, as by reading in English I could learn some useful vocabulary, and anyway I am aware that it is a translation, influenced by the translator's perception of the original work, his experience of life etc. and not exactly what the author really wrote.

Going back to piracy, in fact there is no official document of the Catholic Church regarding breaking copyrights, but its being listed in the examination of conscience is kind of official. Those priests and theologians who consider it theft explain it in the following way: a given product(maybe let's stick to books) is available in shops to be bought at a certain price, so when someone copies it from the internet instead of buying it, this person deprives the author of income the writer would get if the person who downloaded the book would buy it. So for every download of his book the author loses the amount this book costs in a bookshop. This may lead to huge losses. There are some theologians who believe that even though downloading from the internet is generally evil, in some cases it may be acceptable, for instance if you want to have a back-up copy of something you have bought, or when something you have bought got broken, or when a student needs a certain book for his studies and buying it would be too expensive or ordering it e.g. from abroad would take so much time that he would not be able to learn from the book for the exams. Surprisingly, there are also theologians, or rather one theologian whose explanations on this subject I read, who believes that breaking copyrights is no sin at all providing you don't sell what you download and that the downloads are only for your and your family's personal uses. He claims that each person is entitled to access to the culture, and this right is more important that the author's putative income, adding that not everyone who downloads e.g. a book would actually buy it if there were no possibility of downloading. He even goes as far as saying that some artists expect too much money taking into account their own contribution to the work. But the majority of theologians considers it a serious sin. I guess they are right and they must base their opinions on the Bible and the teaching of the Church. Now I would like to read what Protestants think about this issue, since the Ordodox view is already given by Rusmeister :smile:

Sorry for such a long post, if this is a problem :blush:
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Re: funeral of a great myth?

Postby Matthew Whaley » 28 Feb 2010, 18:32

I am a Prostestant, and I agree with you. If you do something that you think is wrong even if it is legal, you are violating your conscience, and therefore it is a sin to you. Romans 13:6; Give everyone what you owe him: if you owe taxes, pay taxes; if revenue, then revenue;if respect then respect; if honor, then honor. Also read Romans 14 as well about liberty and responsibility. This is a good topic for discussion for Christians from all denominations. :smile:
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Re: funeral of a great myth?

Postby ladysherlockian » 01 Mar 2010, 11:39

What Protestant denomination are you? Is what you have written your personal opinion or the general belief of your Church? Because what I am interested in are not personal beliefs but rather what is a given Church's standpoint on the matter.

What about the beliefs of non-Christian religions on this subject?
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Re: funeral of a great myth?

Postby Matthew Whaley » 02 Mar 2010, 14:40

I am a member of the Evangelical Free Church. Yes, and that is a general belief of my church, not my personal opinion.
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Re: funeral of a great myth?

Postby ladysherlockian » 02 Mar 2010, 17:38

Thank you for your answer.
As to the question asked by Gameld at the beginning of the discussion, which after all was not meant to be about piracy, it is possible to find fragments of books on Google Books and Amazon, try there. Usually on the websites which present excerpts there is also a link to a place where you can buy a given book.

I wonder why some people do not consider downloading copyrighted things from the Internet an evil and a sin? I used to do so myself, and my Mum still believes it is no sin and there is no convincing her that in fact it is theft :cry:
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Re: funeral of a great myth?

Postby rusmeister » 03 Mar 2010, 03:12

ladysherlockian wrote:Thank you for your answer.
As to the question asked by Gameld at the beginning of the discussion, which after all was not meant to be about piracy, it is possible to find fragments of books on Google Books and Amazon, try there. Usually on the websites which present excerpts there is also a link to a place where you can buy a given book.

I wonder why some people do not consider downloading copyrighted things from the Internet an evil and a sin? I used to do so myself, and my Mum still believes it is no sin and there is no convincing her that in fact it is theft :cry:


To answer your earlier question, I live in the Moscow region, but I am an American born 'n' raised.
I do not travel to the States, generally speaking, and live here rather permanently.

So let me give you my situation: When I can (it's happened a few times), I order and pay for books. Only I have to get a friend or acquaintance who is traveling, and I am limited to one or two (what they can carry as extra). So the rest of the time, I can't. Now, I find something on the internet. I can a) read it or b) not read it. If I literally have no option to pay; if I am not only not depriving the author* of a copy, but if the author can in no conceivable way make money off of me, is it still a sin to read it? or even copy it? The situations of others can be hard to judge. Not everything is always a sin, and at times like this, where there is a lot of grey area, we are best off focusing on ourselves, rather than on what others are doing. In my case, I see/feel no sin at all. Not the slightest pin-prick of conscience. And I DREAM of buying real hard copies. And when I can, I do. But if I can read Charles Williams or Lewis or whoever, instead of probably never reading him, and no one is being deprived of other goods or profit, then I will. Nothing to cry about. (I do have a fair portion of hard copy of Lewis - all paid for.)

Fortunately, my favorite (Chesterton) is almost entirely in the public domain! :) But I still dream of owning real books... (I do have first editions of his autobiography and the Masie Ward bio (whoo-hoo!).
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Re: funeral of a great myth?

Postby agingjb » 03 Mar 2010, 09:42

I can see good arguments for avoiding the downloading of books in copyright (although I suspect that many here would condemn me for typing copyrighted verse onto my computer from a book that I own, with no intention but convenience and certainly not distributing it further).

But as to the way copyright law is evolving: I would consider 50 years adequate and I do not think the acquisition of a copyright by corporations with the capacity to contrive an arbitrary extension of that copyright is a healthy development.

In the case of C.S.Lewis I feel it to be a pity that his works will not be freely and generally available after 2013; I am disappointed, but hardly surprised, that so many Christian traditions support the continuation of the copyright, with the accompanying legal constraints.
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Re: funeral of a great myth?

Postby ladysherlockian » 03 Mar 2010, 10:17

I used to think just like you: that it is better to download a book illegally than not download it and probably never read it. But recently I have understood that in this way I just try to justify the wrong that I am doing. I can still find many justifications for downloading books illegally, but I have understood that no justifications can make good out of something which is evil. I used to believe that the people who considered piracy a sin wanted only to cut me from culture. But downloading illegally really is theft, and so a sin.
Firstly, we are acting against the author's wishes, because if he wanted to make his books available for free, he would have done so. He wants to sell the book for a certain price, so when we obtain it for free, we do it against his wishes. Some say that books are expensive. Yes, they are, but it does not make us readers entitled to steal them. Would you(I mean here impersonal you) consider stealing a book from the bookshop because you wanted so much to read it, but you could not afford it? Of course you would not steal the book. Maybe because you would be easily caught, which is easy to avoid while downloading the same book from the Internet. But from ethical point of view, it is just the same. Books are expensive, but it is the right of authors to decide on prices. If an author wanted a million dollars for one book, well, this is his property and if you would like to read this book, you must pay a million dollars.
Secondly, and this is the reason why downloading illegally is the same as theft, when we do it, we deprive the author of his income, which rightly belongs to him. Let's say the book costs 30 dollars. For each person who downloads the book the author loses 30 dollars. If a hundred people downloads it, the author loses 300 dollars. And so the losses may go to millions. It is easy to steal the books from the internet when you do not know how it feels when you are a victim of theft. Imagine you are a writer, author of a brilliant book, and you want to make a living from selling the book. But well, you cannot, because people are downloading it from the internet. This is what I used to do when downloading from the internet - stealing.

As to CS Lewis - well, these are his books, not ours, and he can do with them what he pleases - because they are his. We should be grateful that he published them and they are available for purchase, because nobody who wrote a book has a duty to publish it, he can even burn it or hide and forbid anyone to read it. Because it is his property, he can do everything with it. We readers may wish that it was in public domain, but I believe it is very unfair to dictate somebody what he should do with his own property. Even more with intellectual property, to which the author is also attached emotionally. Have you ever written e.g. a poem? How would you feel if someone else was telling you what you should do with your poem?
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