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What color IS God's hat?

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Another BHO member  suggested that I make this available for general reading.

I first heard it as a retelling of an ancient African folk tale. It was recounted by Joseph Campbell, a scholar of Religion.

But his version didn't rhyme.

MY version, you can (if you want to) recite or even SING to a banjo beat!


This story comes from Africa, A long, long time ago,

about two farmers in their fields, each with his row to hoe.

That's when God went walking down the road between

Wearing one of his many hats, the one that's blue and green.

The blue side , it was pointed East, the green side pointed West

And anyone who saw one side, just plain couldn't see the rest.

So one man saw the green side, and one man saw the blue

Looking at God's brand-new hat, from different points of view.

And God just kept on strolling, enjoying the morning breeze,

until he passed out of their view, behind a clump of trees.

That's when God started walking back, heading away from town,

but just before he did that, he turned his hat around.

So the man who saw the green side, and the man who saw the blue,

saw the same side as before, when God when walking through.

And both men, having seen the God, they dropped their tools down

And went a-running rapidly, to tell the news in town.

The one man said "I've seen the God, and as proof of that,

I can tell you honestly: He wears a bright green hat!"

The other man cried "HERETIC! That's not the way it is!

God's hat is a lovely blue! I saw that hat of his."

From having different viewpoints, each man knew he was right

And that's the basic reason why they had a nasty fight.

They were screaming, punching, kicking, and rolling in the mud

The villagers were scared that soon they'd both be spilling blood.

Just before some bones got broke, to everyone's surprise

God came into the village square, and said "Excuse me, guys!"

No one in the village had ever expected THAT,

and lo, behold, upon God's head, he wore that selfsame hat.

Then God explained that He didn't care, if those two men fought.

As God, he's far above such things, but he left them with this thought:

"While men are busy fighting, there's farming that's not done,

and there's no chance to do a dance, and songs aren't getting sung.

No children get their teaching, no artworks get produced

And while the herdsmen watch you fight, the flocks are running loose.

What's more, I'm going to mention, since God is what I be,

the number of the hats I wear, can reach infinity.

So fight on, if you feel you must, but let me warn you that

I hope you've better things to do, than argue ‘bout my hat!



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Playing Since: 1960
Experience Level: Purty Good

mike gregory has made 397 recent additions to Banjo Hangout 

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Occupation: banjo cobbler

Gender: Male
Age: 79

My Instruments:
Handmade (from FRAMUS parts),

Slingerland Maybelle,
5-string CookieTin on a Stick.


Favorite Bands/Musicians:
Any local band. (Same songs as national acts, better ticket prices) John Hartford, Stephen Wade. Original Kingston Trio. George Grove. Tony Trischka.

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Created 12/14/2005
Last Visit 6/15/2024

Born 1945. Fifth of 11 kids. Encouraged by parents to make my own toys whenever possible. Making and playing banjos since 1960. Not limited to Strictly Bluegrass. Instruments for sale priced from $6 to $300. Will also give classes in building instruments from stuff found around the house. Founding member "Grumpystiltskyn Jug Band. Married to the late great Irene (who looked sort of like Kathryn Hepburn) for 32 years.

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