Christian Wisdom from Star Wars
Luminous beings are we, not this crude matter! Indeed our inner beings, our souls are luminous, if we are on the
path to rightousness. We are to be a beacon of light to those who are of the world. We are in the world, but must be careful
to not become of it.
I don't believe it!
That is why you fail.
Yoda said that anger, fear and hatred lead to the dark side of the force. In Christianity, these same things lead down the path to sin and death. He also warns about the dangers of emotions. While in reality, we are not restricted from certain emotions like the Jedi are, these emotions can get in the way of following God's teachings and rational decision making.
Train yourself to let go of everything you fear to lose. - Yoda
Anakin Skywalker's mother said you can avoid change
no more than you can stop the sun from setting.
I was watching an episode of Star Trek: Voyager and God spoke to me. The episode explored some of the theories of evolution. The crew had encountered a race of humanoid reptiles called "Saurians" and a scientist of this race was proclaiming that he had found evidence that their origins were on Earth. But the Saurian government refused to let him keep studying and telling about his findings on the basis that it went against their doctrine. (How many times has that happened in our own history?) He went on to say that the Saurians and Humans aboard Voyager shared forty-some genetic markers.
This is what the Lord has so eloquently said to me:
When I watch those genetic scientists studying DNA in an effort to support
their theory of evolution, I see people studying the pigments in an effort to understand what the painting means. I personally have
believed that DNA, while it does serve as a building block for all life, also serves as a signature; all of the artists I know
of sign their work.
Free Will or All-Knowing God? I say both
Lots of people ask the question
If God knows what I'm going to do before I do it, then is free will a lie? Is every
choice we make predetermined?
These people put God in too small of a box. They believe that if they can't see past their next choice, then how can God?
Free will is not a lie. We are free to choose what we want to do. God does not need to know which choice we make
because he knows every possible outcome of any choice we make. That is the definition of omnicience - unlimited knowledge.
If we are faced with a decision with two possible choices, God knows the outcomes of both choices. This renders the actual
choice we make largely irrelevant to God. We just have to deal with the consequences of the choice we do make.
Hard lessons learned
...cutting the number of hours in the work week and training people to be individually able to do more than one job...- excerpt from an email sent to me by a past acquaintance.
That's one of the reasons the economy collapsed! Why hire 3 people when we can overwork one until he has a nervous breakdown? Now we have 2 people out of work and one going to be on disability by the end of the year.
The reason people want 40 hour work weeks is because living expenses keep rising faster than wages. People want 40 hour work weeks because they are buried in debt from going to college, putting groceries on the credit card, and most of their paycheck goes to rent, mortgage, child daycare, etc. The school loans go on the back burner and only get minimum payments while the interest keeps accumulating, gas prices certainly aren't coming down anytime soon, and the boss just implemented a wage freeze because the company took a loss for the third year in a row.
It's well known that free time is precious to most people. However, some people are not fortunate enough to know that such a concept even exists, because they are working two jobs just to keep a roof over their families' heads and food on their tables.
A lot of good that college degree did them. They bought into the hype that the college degree would be their ticket to a nice career and the degree would pay for itself many times over. As if... What the hype didn't tell them is that college degrees are now a dime a dozen and employers now enjoy a buyer's market when hiring employees because they get 10 resumes a day from college grads looking for jobs.
I often thank the Good Lord that I am not part of this group. I am fortunate not to have college loans still looming over me 10 years later. I am fortunate that I don't have a family to feed other than my cat (she doesn't eat much). I am fortunate that a single job is enough to make my ends meet, although I have moved to a cheaper apartment. My rent was ridiculous for a one bedroom apartment, especially when I could have a three bedroom right down the street for the same price!
I've gotten married, bought a house, realized over the course of three years that we should never have gotten married, divorced, quickly realized I should never have bought the house, foreclosed on the house and have lived alone in an apartment ever since. I foreclosed on the house because of two reasons: loan payment was beyond my pay grade and the water heater blew up and flooded the house. I was faced with a decision: fix the water heater or make the next house payment. I decided neither, since the house payment was 80-90% of my monthly income. Yes, I am part of the foreclosure statistics.
I used to think that poor people simply didn't know how to manage money, or they dropped
out of high school, were addicted to drugs and therefore could not get or keep a job, etc.
In short, I used to think that poor people became poor because of poor choices they made
in life. Often this is true, but just as often, there are things that happen in peoples'
lives that they have no control over.
Sometimes, no matter how hard he tries, there are some things a man can't succeed at,
because the forces around him are stronger than he is. - Steven Brust
Having been through what I have, I am now much more sympathetic toward these people. Witnessing and experiencing for myself the effects of the crumbling economy have taught me things I might never have fully understood otherwise. The idiom "Don't judge somebody until you have walked a mile in their shoes" comes to mind...
My thoughts on the movie "Hunger Games"
I watched Hunger Games on Netflix and I thought it had an interesting story, but a disappointing plot. I had seen similar motifs in other movies, especially this one I don't remember the title of where a village drew lots every year to see who gets stoned to death by their peers.I spent most of the movie rooting for the downtrodden people who had to give up their children to rise up and revolt and overthrow the government. This is some person's idea of what the Roman Colosseum would be like in the distant future. I was appalled by the disparity between the haves and have nots in that society. The government and the upper class live at the height of technological achievement with every creature comfort one could ask for, while the people who do the labor that keeps them alive and comfortable live in filth and poverty. What really disgusts me is that we are actually most of the way there right now.
There are doctors, lawyers, bankers and politicians that sit and watch Jerry Springer, Big Brother, Survivor and Jersey Shore for entertainment. It is very likely that little, if any, of the scenes on these shows are actually real. They probably sit and think "Aren't you glad we don't have to live like that anymore?" What they don't realize is that there are people in this world that live like that every day of their lives. It disgusts me that the lives of people deemed of a lesser walk of life are put on display for the amusement of those who have no clue how fortunate they are that they may never have to experience such hardships. They feel that they are somehow entitled to the riches that they take for granted. I personally believe that it is a miracle that we have not already sunken to the depths of depravity that are depicted in this movie.
Did we learn nothing from Colombine?
When the Sandy Hook massacre happened on Friday, December 14, 2012, it had a lasting effect on me. At least with Colombine, there was a reasonably clear motive. What could drive a person to kill kindergarteners? How many more copy-cat massacres is it going to take before a real effort is spent trying to address mental health issues before these nutcases snap and go on rampages? And then there's the ignorant anti-gun people; the guy didn't even own a single gun that was used. People are going to aquire guns no matter how tight the laws are. Further restricting guns is not going to solve anything, in fact, it could serve to make the problem worse. You might as well try to fix a flat tire by tightening the lugnuts. How about addressing the source of the problem - detecting the tell-tale signs of crazy shooting rampages before they go critical?
I suppose my friend Joe was right when he said that it was not possible to apply logic to a problem that defies logic. This act of senseless violence was just that: senseless. My thoughts and prayers are with the families and friends of those children and faculty members.
Apparently, we have learned nothing in a very long time:
List of school shootings in the United States