Corby's Orbit

Corby's Orbit
Listening in All the High Places illustration by John Kricfalusi

Friday, March 30, 2018

Turtle Power ~ Excerpts from The Neddiad by Daniel J. Pinkwater

"Sacred turtles?" Clive Montague said. "Let me see...there's the giant turtle of Sumatra, but that is a story too horrible to tell. Then there is the Turtle Temple of Colombo, Ceylon. The monks there nurse sick and injured turtles back to health and return them to the wild. There's the Kwakiutl Turtle Dance - takes hours and hours - and the Jivaro Turtle Society. There's the great turtle statue in Kamakura, and the singing turtles of the  Amazon..." ~ pg. 183

"Very sacred thing," Steve Kraft said. "It figures into the most secret rituals of just about every Indian tribe, also South American Indians, and Pacific Island types, and Asians, and Africans.Sacred animal everywhere I guess. The Anishnabe say the seven parts of the turtle - the head, tail, shell and four legs - stand for the seven codes of life: BRAVERY, RESPECT, HONESTY, HUMILITY, WISDOM, HONOUR and SHARING." ~ pg 143


"It came up slowly, a dark shape in the darkness. Round. Huge. It rose up out of the water.I knew right away what it was. I wasn't scared for a second. Just the opposite - I felt this tremendous ... warmth. No, not warmth ... joy. Oh, it was more than joy. It was ... just the biggest kind of love. Love."

 "This gigantic turtle, as big as a car, and so impossibly old, and I was brimming over with love for it. And it loved me. I could see its old turtle head now, and its old turtle eye, could hear its breathing and fel its moving in the water right in front of me - and it was just radiating the purest kind of love. And it was wise. It knew everything, had seen everything - and it was telling me things - telling me things without words, things that couldn't be told in words."

" The best I can do - the best way I can translate what the great turtle told me - is to say that this is a beautiful world, and it wants to take care of us. I'm pretty sure I was crying."
~ pg. 255

11 For, lo, the winter is past, the rain is over and gone;
12 The flowers appear on the earth; the time of the singing of birds is come, and the voice of the turtle is heard in our land;


  1. “A well-known scientist (some say it was Bertrand Russell) once gave a public lecture on astronomy. He described how the earth orbits around the sun and how the sun, in turn, orbits around the center of a vast collection of stars called our galaxy. At the end of the lecture, a little old lady at the back of the room got up and said: “What you have told us is rubbish. The world is really a flat plate supported on the back of a giant tortoise.” The scientist gave a superior smile before replying, “What is the tortoise standing on?” “You’re very clever, young man, very clever”, said the old lady. “But it’s turtles all the way down!”

    From Stephen Hawking’s "A Brief History of Time"