Trivium Pursuit

THE RETURN OF THE BLOG

June 17th, 2022

Updated Website, Product Prices, Trivium Pursuit Logo, This blog, Special Sales

UPDATED WEBSITE

Our website has needed updating and renovating for a very long time. Some things have not been working well. So we are finally getting this done. When the renovated website finally comes on line (soon), should you discover any problems, please let me know.

PRODUCT PRICES

Our first mail-order president has determined that we all need to pay more. Our prices will remain as they are until the updated website is fully enabled, when, regrettably, economic laws will force an adjustment.

TRIVIUM PURSUIT LOGO

‘Trivium’ means where three roads meet. The term ‘trivium’ is used to refer to the first three of the seven liberal arts – the “classical humanist” list of the three fundamental roads of learning: grammar, logic (or dialectic), and rhetoric. We would bring the humanist paradigm under the clearer, brighter, wider-spectrum illumination of the Scriptural paradigm of knowledge, understanding, and wisdom.

The new logo shows the three roads – knowledge, understanding, and wisdom – converging on a three-way (trivium) roundabout. As we have explained in other places, these are not three distinct compartments, but are more like three levels or progressive stages of development. (1) Knowledge – from gathering information, facts, data – is introductory by its very nature. (2) Understanding – from observing the relations within the information, the connections, the coding – builds on knowledge; but understanding also drives one back for more knowledge. (3) Wisdom – from putting understanding to practical use, driving to a productive goal, producing valued output – builds on understanding, which is itself built on knowledge; but wisdom also drives one back for more knowledge and more understanding. So there is an accumulation of knowledge, a growth of understanding, and a development of wisdom – a trivium of the trivium. The three-way roundabout reflects these things.

Of course there is a larger vocabulary of learning in Scripture, and various figures of speech moderate the use of these expressions. Nevertheless, the frequent collation of these three terms (or their equivalents) displays for us a regular relationship between them. A few more obvious examples:

Exodus 31:3 “And I have filled him with {the} Spirit of God: with wisdom, and with understanding, and with knowledge and all {manner of} workmanship.” [Compare Exodus 35:31; 36:1]

Deuteronomy 1:13 “Choose for yourselves wise and understanding and knowledgeable men from among your tribes, and I will appoint them as your heads.”

Proverbs 2:6For {the} LORD gives wisdom; from His mouth {come} knowledge and understanding.

Proverbs 8:12“I, wisdom, dwell with prudence, and I find out knowledge {and} discretion.”

Proverbs 24:3-4 Through wisdom a house is built, and by understanding it is established; [4] and by knowledge {the} rooms are filled with all precious and pleasant riches.

Daniel 1:4 young men without blemish, but good-looking, and skillful in all wisdom, possessing knowledge and discerning understanding … [Compare Daniel 1:17; 5:11, 14]

Ephesians 1:17-18 that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, might grant to you a spirit of wisdom and of revelation in the knowledge of Him, [18] {once} the eyes of your heart [/understanding] have been enlightened …

Colossians 1:9 For this reason we {ourselves} also, since the day which we {first} learned {these things}, we have never ceased from praying on your behalf, and making request that you might be filled with the full knowledge of His will in every {aspect of} spiritual wisdom and {spiritual} understanding [/insight];

Colossians 2:2-3 that their hearts may be encouraged, having been knit together in love, and {reaching} toward {attaining} every {kind of} riches {which comes} from the full assurance of understanding, resulting in a true knowledge of the mystery of God – even {the} Father – and of Christ, [3] in Whom the treasures of wisdom and knowledge are all hidden.

THIS BLOG

I keep writing “we.” Laurie and I worked together as partners. She’s been called home ahead of me, so I’ve been left behind to finish our work. It is still OUR work.

In the division of labor, Laurie was in charge of the web presence, and she was also the head gardener. This last year, I had to do much of what the two of us had been doing, I had a lot to catch up on, and so I ended up letting a number of things slide. I’m beginning to catch up. I’ve been working on the website. I’m preparing to begin blogging. (And food prices make it necessary that I increase the gardening as well.)

Here are a couple of things I’m working on:

The Story of Laurie

Laurie and I were among the early pioneers in modern day homeschooling – early 1980’s. We started traveling as a family in the late 1990’s. We traveled through all contiguous 48 states, giving seminars and visiting many homeschooling families. Others, so I heard, were calling us homeschool evangelists, and in a way that’s what we intended to be. During one fifteen-month period we traveled in 45 states – all in a rusty old Chevy van with no air conditioning. (Arizona in the summer!) There are a lot of stories there, including many remarkable Providences. I wish I had kept a journal. (Laurie was my journal, because she remembered everything.)

Seven Undeniable Truths of Homeschooling – Revised Edition

Back in the 1990’s, we helped put together a local homeschool convention. There was a fifteen minute gap in the main program, and I volunteered to fill it. Off the top of my head, I wrote down seven points on homeschooling, polished them up a bit, and filled the fifteen minutes. Next thing I knew, everybody was asking me for a copy. (Hat tip to Rush Limbaugh’s 39 Undeniable Truths of Life.)

That’s how Seven Undeniable Truths of Homeschooling began. It expanded it into a full seminar and eventually into a convention keynote address. It’s been many years since we traveled and spoke, but the seven truths have never changed – they’re undeniable. It’s time I brought the seminar up to date.

SPECIAL SALES – New, Used, Worn, or Damaged Materials

From time to time, at the end of a Trivium Pursuit blog entry, I will list special items on sale.

Contact me by email – bluedorn@triviumpursuit.com – and if an item is still available, we will negotiate the details of the sale. All sales are final.

Teaching the Trivium

1 copy – new, perfect condition, one-of-a-kind printing experiment with different paper – $20.00 plus shipping

1 copy – some moisture damage – $10.00 plus shipping

1 copy – complete, but badly damaged, taped cover – $5.00 plus shipping

A Greek Hupogrammon

3 copies – some moisture damage – $10.00 each, plus shipping

Ancient History from Primary Sources

2 copies – some moisture damage – $12.00 each, plus shipping

 

The Story of Laurie, Chapter Two

February 1st, 2021

Dear Readers,

Here is the second chapter of brief sketches remembering my wife.

Harvey

Chapter Two: The Beginning

Early Data

Laurie was born in Des Moines, Iowa. Her parents were Earl and Tamzon Melos. Her younger siblings were Ronna, David, and Ann. She grew up in Ankeny, Iowa, and graduated from high school in 1970. While attending the University of Iowa, the Lord granted her repentance and faith.

This is How We Met

Laurie told me that she had seen me at a couple of Bible studies, but she actually only met me at the University of Iowa field house during Spring registration back in January of 1973. I was handing out New Testaments and asking people to sign up for an extra-curricular course in New Testament Greek. She signed up. I don’t remember any of this. However, I do remember her later attending the Greek class, and that she soon dropped out.

Five months later, I first took notice of her at the wedding of a friend in June, and I remember making the mental note that if I ever saw her again, well, I would have to do “something.” Well, I saw her again, and that’s really where the story begins for me.

After graduating from the University of Iowa, I moved back with my parents for the summer of 1973. But I would come back to Iowa City every Sunday morning to visit with that newly married friend and his spouse, and we would travel together to Cedar Rapids to attend a church there. After returning to Iowa City later in the afternoon, I would sometimes linger for a bit while we discussed things, but I would always leave well before supper – except this one time, and when I realized how late it was I insisted that I had to leave, but they insisted that I join them at an evening Bible study. I don’t remember how they finally got me to go to that Bible study, but, well you already guessed it, that was where I saw Laurie again, and true to my promise to myself, I had to do “something.” Actually, all I had to do at this meeting – and for the next few weeks – was just follow the many steps that the Lord had already laid out for me in advance – I almost tripped over them, they came so fast. I can only relate a few of them here.

Five foot two, eyes of blue, thick red hair and freckles too, has anybody seen my gal?

Way back in kindergarten, there was this little girl who left an impression on me. Her family moved away the next year, and I never saw her since (I do remember her name), but she had red hair and freckles on freckles, and I liked that. I don’t know how much that influenced me, but I remember distinctly driving down a certain street, seeing a sign (I don’t even know if Wendy’s was in Iowa City at the time, but it could have been a Wendy’s sign), and thinking I’d like to marry someone with red hair, blue eyes, and freckles. I don’t know why I thought that, I just know that I did.

At the Bible study, they announced there would be messages each week-day evening at a Bible camp some miles away. I had a big car, so I offered a ride for each evening to anybody who wanted to go, leaving the rest to the Lord. Among those who accepted the invitation – well, again, you’re already ahead of me – was Laurie. And the obvious route to pick people up had me picking Laurie up first, and leaving her off last, which afforded opportunity to talk with her a bit. For five days. In my car. Alone.

The Lord had brought Laurie to conversion, but it came out that she had not been baptized with water. She didn’t see why she would need to be baptized. A pastor friend of mine was going to do baptisms soon. I told Laurie I’d like to talk to her about it. So Saturday morning – the Saturday immediately after the week-day evening Bible Camp messages – we met a McDonald’s, I explained how water baptism doesn’t save anybody, but I showed her that the Lord did command it as an act displaying – among other things – a good conscience in active obedience and submission and loyal allegiance to Him. She said she had never been shown that, and she changed her mind on the spot. I was impressed with how she responded to the Word. She was baptized soon thereafter.

After that, I saw a lot of her over a short period of time. One incident stands out. We were walking back to her apartment from a Bible study, and I mentioned the thing about marrying someone with red hair, blue eyes, and freckles. I said, “Two out of three ain’t bad.” She said, “What do you mean?” I said, “Well, you have blonde hair,” She said, “No I don’t. I have red hair.” Well, the summer had bleached her strawberry red hair so much that I never noticed – it looked pretty blonde to me. But as soon as she said it, I realized she did indeed have red hair. And, by the way, she did happen to be five-foot-two like the line in the song.

This is getting a bit long, so I’m skipping over a bunch of things such as meeting her parents, the evening boat ride at my uncle’s cabin on Clear Lake, the marriage proposal (I literally don’t remember it at all, but I’m quite sure it happened, and Laurie used to talk about it), and getting her father’s approval (by phone, if you can believe it) just before I had to leave for school in Oregon. I returned to marry Laurie on December 14 in the middle of a snow storm. Laurie put the whole wedding together. I just had to show up and say “I do.” These and many more events had God’s guiding providence stamped all over them.

Homeschooling before We Knew It

The second day after we were married, while discussing the topic of children with another couple, they began talking about when their children would go to public (government) school. Though Laurie and I had never once discussed the topic before this time, we both simultaneously and in perfect unison interrupted to say that we were not putting our children in public school. At that time, we had no notion where this might eventually lead us. It was in fact a harbinger of what would define, direct, and determine much of our lives.

At first I didn’t remember her, but now everything reminds me of her.

A little song I wrote: Living in the Memory of You

It starts with all the things you used to say.
It goes on with all the things you used to do.
Longing for your touch.
Loving you so much.
I’m living in the memory of you.

I gaze into your lovely eyes a while.
Now and then I linger on your smile.
The way you do your hair.
Now wishin’ you were here.
So we could walk along another mile.

Yes I know you’re gone.
And I know I must I move on.
Still I’m living in the memory of you.

I wish that I might see you just once more.
Standing there just like you were before.
I’d look up and there you’d be.
Looking back at me.
With the look I learned to long for and adore.

I’m as lonely as can be,
I know time is the only remedy,
Yet the memory of you will always live in me.

 

The Story of Laurie, Chapter One

January 29th, 2021

Dear Readers,

Six months ago my wife Laurie passed from this life into glory, is now made perfect, and is ranked higher than an angel. Good for her. Not so easy for me.

Laurie had handled all of the internet stuff — blogs, emails, etc. Now it’s my job. I’m slowly finding the pieces and putting them together.

I am posting here the first “chapter” in The Story of Laurie. It has already appeared somewhere on Facebook. (One of my daughters handles that). It belongs here. Chapter Two will soon follow.

Harvey

The Story of Laurie

Laurie Marie (Melos) Bluedorn: April 2, 1952 – July 27, 2020

Chapter One: The End

The Lord called my wife, Laurie, home at 6:30 am on Monday, July 27, 2020. She went peacefully. You couldn’t have choreographed it any better.

I suppose I could write a book about her and about our many experiences together, but for now I will simply write a few random episodes in our life. It seems to me appropriate to begin at the very end. First I’ll tell you something about how she died. Later, I’ll tell you a little about how she lived.

Cancer

Laurie was diagnosed with ovarian cancer over three years ago. She was in and out of treatment for three years. At the time the corona virus panic set in, she was overdue for treatment. She was denied treatment for three months. We learned later that during those three months the cancer was spreading into her bladder, and was compromising her kidneys. Her developing pain eventually forced us to the emergency room where all was revealed. She had emergency surgeries in the hospital, but being isolated, she was forced to make all decisions on her own. She came back home on hospice care – we didn’t understand that meant there would be no further medical intervention. When further problems developed, the hospice nurse advised us to drop out of hospice and go to the emergency room at the hospital. We switched from OSF in Peoria to Genesis in the Quad Cities, and we sought the advice of a different cancer doctor. He was like an angel of mercy, and greatly helped us with handling her many needs. He did some tests, found a treatment which had some chance of working, which normally had minimal side effects, and if it worked, he had personally witnessed some swift and dramatic turn-arounds. We would know whether it was working within a week or so of beginning treatment. We applied to the insurance for approval of the treatment. We did not expect the treatment would be approved. When we finally learned that the treatment had indeed been approved, it was then too late

The End

The last few weeks, my three daughters rotated turns being with me in caring for Laurie’s needs. They all deserve nursing certificates. The last week was especially difficult because Laurie was losing her ability to communicate. I first noticed it in her writing. Then she had difficulty handling the phone and the computer. Then she had trouble just talking. Then it became an effort for her to hold things. She finally let us feed her and give her drink. She slept a lot. She ate her last about Saturday noon. She drank her last late Saturday afternoon. As I was holding her, she whispered her last words to me, “I love you.” I told her that if she has any influence on this world from the other side, please send me help, because I was going to need it. She never opened her eyes again until the very end. Saturday night, a couple came and sang hymns to her. The last thing a person loses is the hearing. We could tell she heard the hymns and wanted to sing along. Sunday she just slept. Sunday evening she began breathing more deeply. I always slept near her, and about 3:00 am Monday morning I could hear her voicing as she breathed. I thought she might be in pain, so I sat up with her for a while. At 4:30am my daughter awoke me to tell me Laurie had just thrown up. It was what we had fed her Saturday. We cleaned her up, then we called the hospice nurse on duty who happened to live only a few minutes away. She came over, took vital signs, then told us it was usually about three days or so from the last time they eat or drink until they die. She suggested a slight dose of morphine under the tongue would help Laurie breathe. The nurse left. We sat and watched a short while. We saw her eyes moving like she was trying to open them. We both left the room for only a couple of minutes, but when we returned, she was no longer breathing. We called the nurse back. Laurie’s troubles were now over.

Laurie leaves behind myself (Harvey, her husband) her five children (Nathaniel, Johannah, Hans, Ava, Helena), 8 grandchildren (1 adopted), and 4 foster grandchildren (potential adoptions).

Memorials

Laurie donated her remains to the University of Iowa Hospital.Laurie loved flowers, and she loved to feed the birds. In front of our house we have a circle of flowers surrounding a bird feeder. I call this the Laurel Wreath.

On the back of the house I had intended to eventually extend the deck and attach a long planter to the railing where Laurie could plant flowers and herbs like she had in her flower garden. When I build that deck with planter, I will call it Laurie’s Ledge.

A couple years ago, we reduced the size of Laurie’s flower garden behind the house from huge (50’ X 50’) to large (20’ X 40’). This year, we planted fruit trees where the larger flower garden had been. This fall, I will seed what remains of the flower garden over with grass, and next spring I will plant more fruit trees there. This will be Laurie’s Orchard.

Many months in advance, with no thought of her death, Laurie had bought four chestnut seedlings. The day after she died happened to be the day that she had arranged for us to finally pick them up, which I did, and the very next day I planted them across the back of our yard. They say they can grow as high as a hundred feet and live as long as eight hundred years. So I call them Laurie’s Legacy.

On the northwest corner of our property we planted five maple trees, after our five children. Laurie’s Litter.

So when I’m gone, and the property passes to another, I expect much of these memorials will remain for many more years, and her children and grandchildren can drive by and remember her.

 

A Student Blog Site by Ron Paul

April 18th, 2020

RON-PAUL-CURRICULUM-e1489617234705

Do your children post their essays on their own blog sites? If not, why not?

My curriculum emphasizes writing. From the fourth grade through the 12th grade, every student writes a weekly essay for the social science and humanities courses. Over the full period, this is over 800 essays.

We ask parents to read the essays and make grammatical corrections.

Parents should require their students to post their corrected essays on their own blog sites.

WordPress . com is a free blog site service. It is ideal for posting essays.

We also recommend that when students finish their essays for the day, they post links to their essays on the appropriate course forums. This way, other students can click through and see what they have written.

Students take more care about writing when they know that their essays are going to be public documents before the weekend is over.

Over time, students and parents can see the improvements in the students’ writing. This reinforces the value of the program. It also lets students know that they have not wasted their time.

Students get better through lots of practice. By the time they graduate from the program, they are accomplished writers.

Most high school students don’t write many papers. They are not good writers. RPC students have this skill, so they have a real advantage in college courses that require term papers.

For more information on why a blog site is a good idea, read this.

 

Wanted: Course Creators for the Ron Paul Homeschool Curriculum

April 18th, 2020

RON-PAUL-CURRICULUM-e1489617234705

by Ron Paul

I am looking for course creators for grades 1-3.

The RPC will pay $5,000 up-front per course: an advance on royalties. Then, after 200 sales of the course, the creator will get $25 per sale indefinitely.

I want any of three subjects for three years: social studies, literature, science, art, music, or history.

I prefer the same course creator for each subject for all three years. But if I cannot locate people who will produce three courses per subject, I will select more than one course creator per subject.

The RPC uses screencasts: videos of still images or formulas, along with descriptive narrations. To view screencasts, view any of the free sample lessons here.

Each course has 180 lessons.

If you are interested, go here for a description of what is required to create a course.

 

My video on homeschooling — offering the Ron Paul Curriculum’s summer school program two months early

March 28th, 2020

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Here is my recent video on homeschooling.

To encourage you to switch today, I am offering the Ron Paul Curriculum’s summer school program two months early.

You get 90 days for $40, plus $50 per one-year course. I recommend two courses per student.

Test drive any course before you join: five free lessons.

The special order form is here:

RON-PAUL-CURRICULUM-e1489617234705

 

John Quincy Adams was homeschooled by his mother in American Classical education

March 26th, 2020

Excerpt taken from History Of The Life, Administration, and Times Of John Quincy Adams, by John Robert Irelan, 1887, page 17, as reported in the Principle Approach Education newsletter:

John Quincy Adams was homeschooled by his mother in American Classical education, learning to read from the Bible and studying poetry and literature, French, and history up to the age of ten. Here follows a letter written by John Quincy at the age of eleven in which we can clearly see the heart and mind of a “Principle Approach” student:

“Honored Mamma,
My papa enjoins it upon me to keep a journal, or a diary of the events that happen to me, and of objects that I see, and of characters that I converse with from day to day; and altho’ I am convinced of the utility, importance, and necessity of this exercise, yet I have not the patience and perseverance enough to do it so constantly as I ought. My papa, who takes a great deal of pains to put me in the right way, has also advised me to keep copies of all my letters, and has given me a convenient blank book for this end; and altho’ I shall have the mortification a few years hence to read a great deal of my childish nonsense, yet I shall have the pleasure and advantage of remarking the several steps by which I shall have advanced in taste, judgment, and knowledge. A journal book and a letter book of a lad of eleven years old can not be expected to contain much of science, literature, arts, wisdom or wit, yet it may serve to perpetuate many observations that I may make, and may hereafter help me to recollect both persons and things that would otherwise escape my memory.”

Post may contain affiliate links to materials I recommend. Read my full disclosure statement.

 

Practice Maintaining the Face of an Angel

March 22nd, 2020

Stephen Accused of Blasphemy — 8 And Stephen, full of faith and power, did great wonders and signs among the people. 9 Then there arose some from what is called the Synagogue of the Freedmen (Cyrenians, Alexandrians, and those from Cilicia and Asia), disputing with Stephen. 10 And they were not able to resist the wisdom and the Spirit by which he spoke. 11 Then they secretly induced men to say, “We have heard him speak blasphemous words against Moses and God.” 12 And they stirred up the people, the elders, and the scribes; and they came upon him, seized him, and brought him to the council. 13 They also set up false witnesses who said, “This man does not cease to speak blasphemous words against this holy place and the law; 14 for we have heard him say that this Jesus of Nazareth will destroy this place and change the customs which Moses delivered to us.” 15 And all who sat in the council, looking steadfastly at him, saw his face as the face of an angel. –Acts 6:8-15

Notes from The MacArthur Study Bible:

Acts 6:15 face of an angel. Pure, calm, unruffled composure, reflecting the presence of God.

Pure, calm, unruffled composure, reflecting the presence of God. Right now, I’d like you to put this face on — pure, calm, unruffled composure, reflecting the presence of God. Look at yourself in the mirror and remember this pose. Next time something happens that irritates you, put that face on. Practice this pose. Use it often. The more you practice, the easier it gets. In fact, it will become so easy that as you put on this pose, your mind will even become pure, calm, and unruffled. It will become automatic.

What would this world be like if we all did this.

Angels venerating the Madonna Giotto
Angels Venerating the Madonna by Giotto di Bondone

Guido Reni Angel of the Annunciation
Angel of the Annunciation by Giotto di Bondone

Leonardo da Vinci detail from Madonna of the Rocks
Madonna of the Rocks by Leonardo da Vinci

Post may contain affiliate links to materials I recommend. Read my full disclosure statement.

 

Discounts and Freebies from our Homeschool Convention Friends

March 18th, 2020

As the homeschool community respects “social distancing” to combat coronavirus, many are missing the opportunity to browse, learn, and shop at conferences across the country. So far, around 20 homeschool conferences have been cancelled, and more are expected to cancel. Vendor friends of ours were discussing this and decided to band together to help. We are all in this together and, during this time of need, we are glad to support you.

We want to give you the opportunity to take advantage of some of the conference specials being offered. Please look at these opportunities from many vendors who were looking forward to serving you at the conventions this year.

Included in this convention special is a special price on our Pilgrim’s Progress ebooks.

Final Cover John Bunyan Part One

 

The Coronavirus and Homeschooling

March 9th, 2020

Ron Paul Homeschool Curriculum

The Coronavirus and Homeschooling
by Ron Paul

Fears regarding the coronavirus will lead to new interest in homeschooling.

This has begun in Hong Kong.

Some families hesitate to switch because the parents have no experience in homeschooling. A great advantage of my curriculum is that inexperienced teachers can get their children up to speed within a few day. Videos do the heavy lifting.

If fear spreads, some parents will at last be willing to pull their children out of the public schools. If someone asks you what you think, encourage the enquirer to move ahead.

New teachers and classroom-educated students can view the first five lessons in every course for free. This removes most of the uncertainty.

Ron Paul Curriculum

 

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