Should there be a sacred veil over photos of imminent/tragic death???? You decide…..

http://www.bing.com/images/search?q=sacred+veil+images&qpvt=sacred+veil+images&FORM=IGRE#view=detail&id=1F7EBD7A52F04E74956073CFE6CC19F51CB04CFF&selectedIndex=39

http://www.bing.com/images/search?q=sacred+veil+images&qpvt=sacred+veil+images&FORM=IGRE#view=detail&id=271075F38686DBE4141E5695C35C358E6D48E881&selectedIndex=47

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What do you think????

 

http://www.booktv.org/Watch/14107/Book+TV+at+the+University+of+Pennsylvania+Barbie+Zelizer+About+to+Die+How+News+Images+Move+the+Public.aspx

 

 

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http://www.lvrj.com/blogs/kalas/Of_shame_invasion_and_human_decency_–_and_my_respect_for_Elizabeth_Edwards.html

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Of shame, invasion, and human decency

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Voyeuristic judges who just love to peek
Nod their disapproval at the wounded, weak
Open up the closet door, what a crash
We all have the right to know your family trash

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“Listen up, you neandrabozos.  We had two choices.  Either we submit to a public, thermonuclear proctologic exam, or we agree upon a corporate, familial lie as a reasonable and rational self-defense against the current culture of media which daily behaves less and less like journalism and more and more like a gaggle of 7th graders giggling, passing notes, and basking in the spotlight of being the first to know the dirt about other classmates.”

Perhaps you disagree. The National Enquirer certainly does. They tell me, in their advertising by-line, that the above dynamic is not a gaggle of 7th graders, but a most sincere and genuine collection of people with “inquiring minds.” They assure me that I “have a right to know.”

Our need to see your nakedness is most sincere
We’re confident your sinfulness will flee in fear
People will change if they feel shameful enough
So strip ’em down and make ’em strut their stuff

The National Enquirer and I disagree about the attributes which constitute an inquiring mind. We disagree about my rights. And, while I’m at it, we disagree about honor, decency, morality, empathy, humility, self-respect, critical thinking, psychological and spiritual maturity, and being truly human. I think the average brothel madam has a more consistent grip on her soul.

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The scary part is that the once obvious and clear moral and intellectual distinction between The National Enquirer and mainstream news media is, for me, becoming less obvious and less clear.

“But, Steven, you’re only as sick as your secrets!”

Hogwash.  I’d like to smack the man or woman who coined that little piece of pseudo-righteous nonsense. Here’s the truth:  Some secrets make us sick. Some. And, if you should happen upon such a sick secret in your own life, it does not at all follow that revealing the secret (getting well) should include taking out a full-page ad in the New York Times, let alone standing naked on your front lawn and calling me so I can come see. 

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In most cases, the healing that comes from revealing a secret depends on your holy and healthy containment of that revelation. In psychology we call it “having good boundaries.” You find one or a small handful of confessors. 

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If appropriate, you turn yourself into the police.  Truth to whom the truth is due.

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What do you mean you want to keep your dignity

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Our holiness requires loud publicity

How dare you speak of privacy, you’re such a tease

Just dangle all your secrets in the morning breeze

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But sometimes revealing secrets causes the greater damage.  And buying into the shame-based need to compulsively and publicly spew your secrets willy-nilly is itself an indication of sickness.

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I say again, hanging out with prostitutes in hotel rooms is not even close to the worst thing I know about Jimmy Swaggart.  What made me want to toss my metaphorical moral cookies was his blubbering television confession of it.  What I wanted to say to him was something like, “Jimmy, that you’re a card-carrying sinner is no surprise to me.  It only surprises you.  And the most important thing I can tell you is that neither your virtues nor your sins are extraordinary.  You’re not that big a’ deal. Sit down. Shut up. You’re just a man.”

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But the greatest and most pervasive sickness of our time is the need to see … the need to know.  Everything.  About everybody.

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How dare Franklin Roosevelt allow himself only to be photographed without his wheelchair in view!  How dare John Kennedy withhold from us that he was, by all accounts, a shameless philanderer!  And shame on the press for being complicit in such ‘secrets.’

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Say it out loud:  “I have the inalienable right to know the details of the every sexual sin of every occupant of every public office.  Past, present, and future.  Candidates have a moral obligation to disclose such things, like they disclose financial and tax records.”

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Okay, you’ve said it.  Now, do you really believe it?  And, if you’re right, are you surprised to hear me say that no psychologically healthy, self-respecting person would knowingly avail themselves to such a process?  They would recognize it immediately as pathology, and walk away.  Leaving who, then, to run for office?  To lead us?  Answer:  people with really well-groomed and polished personas.  People with no real core.

Scared yet?

Ever read the history of Puritans in colonial America?  They would bring adulterers before the congregation and force them to disrobe.  Stand naked.  Put them in the stocks.  People would stand and jeer.  Throw things.  Spit.  It’s a tough job, but somebody has to be deeply spiritual enough to make sure that sinners are publicly humiliated. 

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In the name of Jesus.  So that we can feel good about ourselves.

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Tell me you know I’m being ironic.

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We read about corruption in Genesis
Turns out God is our nemesis
Adam and Eve, he clothed their shameful curse
But we had a right to seem them naked first

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Here’s my favorite Frederick Nietzsche quote:  “Everything holy requires a veil.” 

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But of course.  We don’t stare and gawk casually at what is holy, because this kind of casual familiarity changes and injures our relationship to real holiness.  Real humanity.  The reason Moses averts his eyes before the Burning Bush is, in the end, the same reason we shut and lock the bathroom door when using the toilet.  Nothing naughty or wrong going on in there.  It’s not a secret.  But, to gaze upon it in casual curiosity would risk reducing us to bladder and bowel.  We’re more than that.  So we veil those behaviors.

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Have we forgotten that moral failure is a holy encounter, too?  That few things are more vulnerable and naked and painful then the discovery of just how dark and ugly and selfish and shallow we can be?  Is it a surprise that normal and healthy and moral people want to shut and lock the bathroom door during these encounters, too?  Or that they are willing to lie boldface to the people pounding on the door, insisting on their right to know and see?

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If a media news source or a politician ever offers you a benevolent smile, a warm hand on the shoulder, an affirming nod and says, “The best thing you can do right now is tell the truth,” … well, a wise person would run away screaming.

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No thing is obscene.  Obscene is not a description of a thing, but of us.  What’s obscene is our dark and ugly desire to “reach behind the veil.”  To drag everything into the light.  To convince ourselves that we have a right to know.  A right to see.  And to feel really good about it.

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It is the better part of human decency not to need to see everything naked.  And, based upon that definition, human decency in America has gone to hell.

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Like John and Yoko standing on an album cover
We want the name and address of your current lover
Our righteousness will grow with every sin you list
We insist that you be exhibitionist

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An inquiring mind?  Elizabeth Edwards had a different view:  “I ask that the public, who expressed concern about the harm John’s conduct has done to us, think also about the real harm that the present voyeurism does and give me and my family the privacy we need at this time.”

Translation?  “Thanks for all your concern, folks, but cancer and my numnutz husband are the least of my problems.  Is your life really diminished by simply leaving us alone?”

Good Reader, if a case can be made that John Edwards has committed a crime, then have at him.  Rock and roll.  If he’s committed a felony or done evil, call the police.  Or I will.  But adultery is not a felony.  And, while it is many things destructive and inexcusable, it is not evil.  Murder is evil.  Having sex with children is evil.  But, if all I know is all there is to know, it’s not much more interesting to me than if John had decided to commit the sin of gluttony while in public office and gain 300 pounds.

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Lust is but one of the seven sins Thomas Aquinas called “deadly.”  I dare you to make a case as to why it should be singled out for special political persecution while the other six get a pass.  Ever wonder if pride or covetousness or anger has anything to do with the war in Iraq?  Arms for Contras behind Congress’ back?  But hey, we’re great with that as long as you’re not having sex with someone you’re not married to.  It’s not a lie; rather a necessary paternalism.

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Just asking.

Elizabeth continues:  “Although John believes he should stand alone and take the consequences of his action now, when the door closes behind him, he has his family waiting for him.”

Okay.  Elizabeth has decided not to walk, though I would not have blamed her for that.  Nor will I blame her for staying.  She is there for John.  She — the woman whom John betrayed.  She has opted for the work of reconciling her marriage.  The key words there are “she” and “her.”

So, who the hell would I think I was to imagine I had anything else to contribute to this discussion, let alone any additional claim on its details?

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I wish John, and Elizabeth — and the other woman — every peace and healing. 

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None of those broken people need my help feeling bad.

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I take it as a point of honor to avert my eyes.

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https://curtisnarimatsu.wordpress.com/2012/12/07/great-sages-frankl-kalas-on-the-indomitable-nietzsche/

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https://curtisnarimatsu.wordpress.com/2012/11/28/not-who-am-i-but-whose-am-i-and-this-radicalgestalt-changes-everything-from-sage-steven-kalas-born-1957/

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One of my favorite Friedrich Nietzsche quotes is, “Everything holy requires a veil.”

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Now, modern Americans might think he means that we should keep things covered up because those things are shameful. Nope. He means that some things are so beautiful, so huge, so powerful, so naked, so intimate, that to gaze casually upon them would be injurious to their meaning and value. Injurious ultimately to us.

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Grief is such a thing.

 

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http://www.lvrj.com/living/9146411.html

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“To be sure, man’s search for meaning may arouse inner tension rather than inner equilibrium. However, precisely such tension is an indispensable prerequisite of mental health. There is nothing in the world, I venture to say, that would so effectively help one to survive even the worst conditions as the knowledge that there is a meaning in one’s life. There is much wisdom in the words of Nietzsche: “He who has a why to live for can bear almost any how” Viktor E. Frankl, Man’s Search for Meaning
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https://curtisnarimatsu.wordpress.com/2012/08/01/coming-off-the-mountaintop-savior-redeemer-friedrich-nietzsche-1844-1900/

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https://curtisnarimatsu.wordpress.com/2012/06/25/nietzsche-1844-1900-the-most-misunderstood-negative-icon-amor-fati-love-of-fateaffirmation-of-life/

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https://curtisnarimatsu.wordpress.com/2012/08/09/your-stigma-by-others-does-not-define-you/

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https://curtisnarimatsu.wordpress.com/2012/08/16/alone-natures-reality/

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https://curtisnarimatsu.wordpress.com/2012/08/22/to-love-and-to-be-loved-our-innate-needs-in-this-tragic-indifferent-world-yet-authenticity-also-compels-solitary-reflection/

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Lots of people don’t want to be present to sadness — their own or anyone else’s. Other people would like to be present to their bereaved friends and family, but don’t know how.

We live in a culture where grief is treated as a disease to be “cured,” or a weakness cursed of shame or self-loathing.

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Contrarily, grief is the holiest of human journeys.

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I concur with your observation that people around us are largely inept at befriending us in grief. Yet I also encourage people like you to remember to veil (protect and value) their grief. Keep the circle of confidants small. Pick two and no more than five people who will hear the depths of your pain.

There are two ways to read your question at the end. Literally you ask how you might numb the heartache. But I’m guessing you aren’t being literal. In fact, it’s not a question at all, is it? It reads more like an indignation. Like, how dare anyone ask you to numb the heartache! How dare the medical community suggest drugging your bereavement!

See, J.R., you know how precious your sadness is. A breathless, crushing burden, yes. But precious.

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http://www.lvrj.com/living/culture-s-approach-to-suffering-only-prolongs-pain-129608658.html

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And, for those kinds of sufferings/losses that can never be entirely healed, to bear it. To find meaning in it.  To turn that suffering into some transformative work in the world.

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And the truth is this: The human journey includes suffering. No one comes to ask for help who isn’t suffering.

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But, here’s another truth: In any given time in your life, the number of people who actually, really, honestly want and are willing to grant you an engaged and healing audience for your suffering/loss  is      …       small!!     Or nonexistent!!    

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Even people who sincerely love and adore you might find themselves ambivalent about really engaging and listening to the part of you that suffers. See, the people around us have egos, too. Their egos mobilize to protect them just like your ego does. “Cheer up … get over it … God has a plan … everybody is doing the best he or she can … don’t cry” — the felt motive for these messages is to help you.

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But each of these messages also contains the anxiety of the messenger:  Please stop bothering and disturbing me by suffering.

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And that’s what most modern people do. They try to stop suffering. They “get over it.” They build layer upon layer of pretense and persona over their wounds, because it’s, well, the sociable thing to do. Most of us, then, suffer unconsciously. Because that’s the way we’ve been taught to suffer.

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http://www.lvrj.com/living/living-authentically-a-challenge-worth-embracing-89350462.html

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The more practiced you become at living authentically, the more often you’ll have to make friends with Alone.

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If you take seriously a commitment to authentic selfhood, you find that you regularly must sacrifice belonging. Living authentically includes regular renegotiations of how we belong to family. In some extreme cases, whether we will belong to family at all. Likewise, adjustments in friendships, and sometimes distancing and even discarding friendships.

There are journeys of selfhood and wholeness that must be walked alone.

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Individualism as ego overpride is not the solitary reflection of an authentic life   –

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http://www.lvrj.com/view/steven-kalas-we-are-individuals-in-consequential-relationships-162688016.html

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https://curtisnarimatsu.wordpress.com/2012/08/17/alienation-i-dont-belong-and-estrangement-getting-dumped-because-i-dont-belong/

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alienation [I don’t belong] and estrangement [getting dumped because I don’t belong]

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Alienation & estrangement   –  the results of Loss  [e.g. getting dumped]  by your beloved  [lifemate/soulmate]   

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http://www.lvrj.com/blogs/kalas/_Retirement_leaves_time_for_pondering_self_relationships.html

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Question: What do all people seeking release from personal despair have in common?

Answer: They are suffering some combination of alienation and estrangement.

Alienation means a crisis of belonging. We are alien. We don’t belong.

Estrangement means the painful disruption of the bonds of relationship. Interpersonal injuries and injustices. To become estranged is to become a stranger to the one we love and by whom we are loved.

I’m saying your use of the word “misfit” sounds like a crisis of alienation and estrangement.

Actual A&E: Important relationships sometimes unravel (become estranged). Sometimes, the cause is egregious injury done to the other. Other times relationships just unravel. Some people are actually alienated by society.  Old people, gay people, poor people, Fierce Truth-tellers — some people are quite deliberately excluded in whole or in part from belonging.

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Humble honesty is not ego-driven self-pity [self-loathing]

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http://www.lvrj.com/blogs/kalas/Surviving_economic_changes_requires_rethinking_happiness.html

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When we’re already feeling scared and depressed, the human ego finds easy purchase in resentment (“This is unfair! I followed the rules!”), or self-loathing  (“I’m unemployed, therefore I must be a real loser!”)
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Mental health means telling the voices of entitlement  [being egotistic/singularly special], resentment [feeling persecuted like Jesus], and self-criticism [ohh woe is me]   to “sit down and shut up.”
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Self-loathing is, ironically, a consequence of narcissism — not humility.   When I was a priest, I used to say it this way to pilgrims making their strident, anguished case for unforgiveability: “OK, ‘For God so loved the world’ (emphasis mine) … except for you? The work of redemption in the life of Jesus set the entire cosmos free from sin and death … except for you? Well. Hmm. Aren’t you … remarkable. The one person in the history of time whose dereliction is more powerful than God.”That little speech invariably changed the tone, direction and energy of pastoral counseling. And for the better.
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My friend, Nate Larkin, would say it even better in his terrific book “Samson and the Pirate Monks: Calling Men to Authentic Brotherhood.” Nate says we combine narcissism and self-loathing so brilliantly that both are invisible to us. In such moments, we become “the piece of (expletive) around which the entire world revolves.”

Yikes!

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It’s a virtual cliche for modern patients in therapy to self-diagnose with “I need to work on my self-esteem.” It rarely turns out to be a correct diagnosis.

I much prefer to focus on self-respect. Self-regard. A conscious and responsible self-acceptance. Because there are times when I have had sufficient self-respect to recognize that I do not hold my behavior, my tone/attitude or my words in high esteem. Enough self-respect to admit when these things do not deserve to be esteemed.

The capacity and willingness to feel an authentic remorse, regret and disappointment in self is, ironically, a key ingredient to an eventual return to the only self-esteem worth having — a true celebration of a whole self discovered through the work of facing ourselves as we are.

Here’s a dirty little secret: If you argue backward from the implications of their behavior and choices, people generally have terrific self-esteem! The default posture of human beings is to think pretty darn highly of themselves.

I can hear it now: “Oh, you’re wrong, Steven! People are crippled with low opinions about themselves! They need affirmation. Validation. They need to hear they are loved and worthy and special!”

No, actually, they don’t. Feel-good speeches self-inflate modern neurotics . In fact, continuing in such speeches tends to become conscripted into the patient’s problem of a false sense of self-importance.

What people need is to tell the truth and then to live with integrity.

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So, how do ruined people pick up and move on again toward a thriving, grateful life?   The first order of business is surrender. We stop railing against the harm.  Somewhere inside of ourselves, we make an authentic peace with the fact that no one is immune to harm. We decide to deeply believe that we waste our lives insisting every scale must be balanced before we are free.
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Second, in some cases, we walk away from the fight. Yes, we give up. We acknowledge that our naysayer self-important detractor has won and move on to other work, other opportunities to give life a chance.
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And third, we decide that no one has the power to make life anything less than good.  You might call this decision a decision of Faith.  I am a seminarian and minister by backdrop.
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Celebrate life, Petunia  — a man’s gotta do what a man’s gotta do    :-)    
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https://curtisnarimatsu.wordpress.com/2012/12/07/great-ennoblers-of-wisdom-frankl-kalas-on-the-taboo-topic-of-suicide/

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