Being Human | Image Series Introduction Part 1

16 March, 2012 § 1 Comment


Creation of Adam and Eve (Gate of Paradise, Ba...In the beginning,when God created the heaven’s and earth and everything in the earth, God saved His final and most pleasing work of creation to create Adam and Eve in His own image. Here began the conversation of  what bearing God’s image entails. I propose to you that the image of God entails those traits which identify us as humans. Thus we as humans have some allowance of will, presence, power and knowledge, among other things. To innumerate those traits which identify us as humans is a worthy and noble task that I have yet to see accomplished without extensive bias towards the author’s field of study. We will explore what makes us distinct from any other species, specifically what it means to be a human and the responsibility that comes with being human.

The problem that I most often run into is that people in general are not aware or particularly concerned with what makes them human. As a result all sorts of  atrocities are allowed towards their fellow human beings either by their own hands or by someone else’s. This cannot be allowed to happen, but without a sufficient alternative; the truth, it will not and cannot be stopped.

When this mystery of what makes a human a human is understood, heroic actions take place. Watch this 10 minute video of the heroism of the Danish in World War II and listen for why they bothered to save 95% of their Jewish population from the wrath of those who thought themselves to be the higher race.

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What Keeps Me Busy

2 March, 2012 § 3 Comments


St. Augustine of Hippo as pictured during the ...

“It was not, Lord, that I lacked mind or memory, for You had given me as much of these as my age required; but the one thing I revelled in was play; and for this I was punished by men who after all were doing exactly the same things themselves. But the idling of men is called business; the idling of boys, though exactly like, is punished by those same men: and no one pities either boys or men.”  -Augustine of Hippo Confessions. Book 1 chapter 9

 As a North American, my life is characterized by what I do—what keeps me busy, my business. Right now I’m in the business of going to school, not (as I am often reminded) a lucrative business, but it’s my business none the less. Augustine describes the idleness of men to be their business. If the idleness of men is their business and education is my business, is education an idle pursuit? I’m not sure. In the meantime I have nearly finished idling and will then have to decide on where we will go next.

Since leaving Facebook three weeks ago, it’s like we’ve woken up to our lives, and have started doing something about it. We started a Bible study in the book of James that same night and this past week switched to Wednesday nights. It’s encouraging to   fellowship with the other couple of believers who attend. Our business intertwines at this degree and it’s fulfilling to input into another believer’s life.

We’re still in the calming down stage to be honest. We jump at alarms we scare at surprises. We just want life to be simpler than what it is. We’ve quieted down our conversations, now I think it’s time we quieted down our involvement all together.

Life After Facebook

24 February, 2012 § 5 Comments


NYC - MoMA: Pablo Picasso's Repose

“I’ll be curious to read how your newfound faceboook freedom affects your relationships.” –Alex

It’s been a week since my wife and I have left Facebook… after the foaming at the mouth, and inane babbling subsided, life has proven to be substantially quieter. We received a splendidly intentional email from one of our family members and took our sweet time to craft an equally intentional response.

What can I say? My wife has received more attention, my classes have received more attention, I’ve received more attention–life has moved to from  a grueling, breakneck pace to a steady gander. Yet there is a wonderful sense of productivity in the air.

In all of this I’ve come to realize how few close relationships I posses. Here and now friends were on Facebook. There and then friends were on Facebook. Relative solitude is proving to be lonesome but it has made me to seek God further out  of a desire for conversation.

What now then? First Facebook then the world? Reveling in this quieter state of mind, I am moved to repose, but soon comes the refining process of actually dealing with the troubles that have been swept under the rug by inaction.  It reminds me of that Twenty-One Pilots song Car Radio. Listen to it. It’s obnoxious, but it really puts our busy lives into perspective.   

03/02/12 Promo: Our Busy Lives Considered *Featuring Augustine of Hippo*

Pleading the Proverbial Fifth

17 February, 2012 § 7 Comments


I’m going through a reduction of conversations in life: time, money, writing–in order to communicate a clearer message. Today at 5:15pm I will be deactivating my Facebook account. Not in pointless protest of change or any such ridiculous thing, but in order that I might more intentionally live life and share in life’s immediate conversations more poignantly.    There are two reasons for taking this measure and they are the pressure of being present and my philosophy of people.

Having given it 24 hours since I announced my leaving of Facebook, I have already spoken to one person who feels freer now to deactivate her Facebook account because my wife and I are leaving. This led to a realization that I hadn’t quite fully grasped, but had an idea of, when I announced my leaving. People, especially friends and family who we’ve both recently moved away from, expect a great deal of involvement in their lives because of our presence on Facebook, and when that involvement isn’t met there is hurt and resentment. The pressure of being present on Facebook is enormous. I have a friend who never bought into the whole, “get a Facebook” craze, because of the pressure involved, and now I understand some of that.

Not only is the pressure of our presence so poisoning (had to), but I’m also realizing that my philosophy of people doesn’t agree with the philosophy that Facebook promotes of how to build an effective relationship. Information alone doesn’t constitute a healthy relationship. On Facebook, you don’t even really have to know the person to know their birthday, relationship status and what they ate for breakfast. In this ever shrinking world, with implements like Facebook, texting, twitter and the like, you are never sure who heard (or misheard) you. That analogue afternoon never happens. I can really only keep up with so many conversations before the input that I have to give in these conversations becomes so paltry that I might as well have not spoken.  I don’t want to speak in every conversation. Neither I nor anyone I know is a true renaissance man, and to be honest, I don’t want to be.

I plead the fifth.

Conversations

31 January, 2012 § Leave a comment


日本語: 夕日を眺める恋人(男女) English: A Japanese couple h...

I was struck with a thought today while on an afternoon walk. I was passing by couples deep in conversations about their love for this, that, or the other thing getting to know one another as couples do, and a rather unoriginal thought came into my mind, “everyone has their own conversation”. Conversations being as they are generally anyone can add to them but only the right people with the right credentials can say something valuable in or about that conversation. Just a thought to ponder today and whenever it is that you have opportunity to speak in a conversation, what will you say, how will you say it, and is it worth saying? I think that I will camp on this idea for a little while. More to come.

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