Archive for January 2015

FUN WITH FRACTALS (Or: CORRECTING A RANT)

January 30, 2015

There is no easy way to segue out of my past horrible week of death and Hell  and victimization by a criminal element working from within our State government.

But being with people helps.

Bubble Lost in a

My classes.    My friends.    My grandson in that photo – in a big bubble in a pool.

 

Science helps too.   Look at the water up there in that pool.   Or:

fractal smoke

And after all my troubles  I can still smile thinking about Son and I out there in the midnight cold, doing our astronomy,   looking for the asteroid….

And then there are these things:

fractals vortex
I re-read last week’s “Saturday Rant”  about the information black-out we are generally subjected to,    and thought I should “refine”  it a little bit.   Our Rulers disagree with most of the American people, and so I wrote about how they censor information, so we think we’re alone and weak.     I had written  “…more importantly for the continued existence of our Republic which depends upon a Free Press…”  were the people in my classes who didn’t get to  see the recent March For Life demonstration.

Ha ha!!   —   Are the people in my classes so important that if THEY cannot see all of the news themselves,  our Republic might fall?   Ha Ha Ha

fractals rug

The existence of America depends upon the people I know!

fractals blue

No, really,   The people in each of my classes ARE that important.  And so are the people in any group that you know of.    The people in your family gathering.   The people in your office or shop.   A random sampling of people on the sidewalk that you are  on.    Your religious congregation.

It’s not just that ANY group of Americans are vital to the preservation of our Republic.   It’s not just that we believe that EVERY citizen is important.     Beyond that, deeper than that:

It’s the fractal dimension.
I’ve been showing you pictures of fractals.  A fractal is more than just repeating patterns.    A fractal illustrates that any one small segment or portion of something contains within it information for the whole.

That’s my non-mathematical definition.

fractal smokies

Ahhhh…the beautiful Smokies!

At the foothills of a mountain range,  pick up a tiny, tiny piece of … like, sand.     It’s a miniature rock.   And it contains within its contours and components the whole mountain range.

fractal mountains

The edges of a wave in the ocean exemplifies wave action of all waves in their totality.

fractals spiral waves

Smear some oil into a mud puddle.  (That’s the kind of science I like to do!)     Then a small penny-size portion looks just like the entire pattern of the colorful oil film.
Too many photos?

Want some math?     (This fractal thing is real.)

The math involves Julia Sets:      The function for certain Julia sets is: f(z)=z^2+c.   That’s it.   The new complex coordinate is set to the old one squared plus “c”. What is c? It is simply a complex number, and it can have any value you like. Different c values produce different Julia sets. Let’s use (1 + 1i) as c. So, if we were to start with the point (2 + 1i), the first iteration would be:

f(z)=f(2+1i)=

(2 + 1i)^2 + (1 + 1i)=

2*2 + 2*1i + 2*1i + 1i*1i + 1 + 1i=

4 + 2i + 2i + 1(-1) + 1 + 1i=

5 + 5i -1=

4 + 5i

So the first iteration brings us to (4 + 5i). We can do it again now.

f(z)=f(4 + 5i)=

(4 + 5i)^2 + (1 + 1i)=

4*4 + 4*5i + 4*5i + 5i*5i + 1 + 1i=

16 + 20i + 20i + 25(-1) + 1 + 1i=

17 + 41i – 25=

-8 + 41i

So our second iteration gives us (-8 + 41i). We continue to do this . . . .
xxx

Thanks to  this Website …

http://www.angelfire.com/art2/fractals/lesson2.htm

 

Don’t forget the point I was making.   (I almost did!)    Enjoy the pretty pictures.  Look up some more fractals on the Web.   But remember,  my classes,  or any group of people:    each person in your life,  is   “like”  a fractal.    They are representative of the whole.   Thus:

You cannot “love the world.”   Love the person next to you.

You cannot “feed the hungry”  Feed the hungry one next to you.

You cannot rail against censorship and ignorance.   Inform the friend who you are talking with.   Spread the word.  Spread the truth about your Creator, without fear.   Spread the truth about our wonderful country (or your wonderful nation).   Spread the truth about morality and virtue and good citizenship.   Spread the word that Life is to be cherished and protected and celebrated.

Our Rulers do not.

It’s up to us to stop censorship and political correctness.

Each of us is important.   Each of us is representative of the whole.

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PUZZLE THOUGHTS: MUG MONEY, DISMANTLING, AND DEATH

January 28, 2015

Making progress:

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I began this puzzle a few days ago.   (“On The Street Where You Live.”)  This is my street, my neighborhood,  and I’ve spent many hours in the past week here. So many hours, in fact, that I’m beginning to feel like a Peeping Tom – these are my neighbors, after all!
Working on the puzzle has given me time to think, though;  to think things through with more time than I usually give myself to think.  And it’s been mostly a week for very serious thoughts.

MUG MONEY –

stickup ladyI was thinking of the street smarts I had when I was a child growing up in the city.  I knew grownups often took Mug Money with them, in case they were mugged on the street.   $5,  $10,  $15,  depending on how you were going to be dressed  and what street you’d be walking on.

 

My memory resurrected this process today because I have finally sent in  to the government (I won’t tell you which one)  what is probably the equivalent of Mug Money.   There was no justification for their demand,  no documentation, no foundation —  but it’s costing me increasingly more to get to the bottom of this, and all the evidence points to scammers deeply entangled within the actual  government agency, to the point of confusing the legitimate employees who can only repeat what they see on their computer screen, but have no idea why those particular numbers are there.
(My C.P.A. office is investigating further,  but not with my “permission”  or at my request  and not with my name so that there will be no retaliation or further expense.)

I’m upset.    I stopped it this time by giving them their Mug Money —  Working the jigsaw puzzle helped a bit.
DISMANTLING –

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Those are my couches out there in the snow.   Two very old ones from the basement rec room and one from my living room.   Couches older than many of my readers!

It was a busy day here yesterday:

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A flatbed way out there on the street picking up the old couches.  The yellow Penske delivering my new couches.

Um….  All is well.   I really like my new couches.   But as I worked more on the jigsaw puzzle I thought:  I just un-did three rooms in my home to make room for new furniture.    Dismantled part of my home — and part of my memories.

What kind of homes do we have that we can dismantle parts of them, and take in new couches — new strangers —  make a new “home”?

A temporary home,  that’s what kind.

I tried not to think of all those family couch memories while I worked more on the puzzle.   And one day my new couches will just be a memory.   And one day I will just be a memory.     Maybe.   Maybe to a few people.

And DEATH comes next.

 

soul up stairsThe mother of a good neighbor died suddenly this week.    Really, really suddenly and unexpectedly.    She was a good woman;  happy,  lively, engaged in activities and friendships.   Death is so wrong.

My neighbor,  still in enough shock so he could speak,  said that his mother had taught him and his brothers and sisters to love Jesus and to pray.  What a wonderful legacy.

 

Again,  death is so wrong,  but I know why we all deserve it.   I know there is a place in Hell reserved for us —  and I know what the Resurrection of Jesus means for us.
Then, as I’m working on the puzzle, I thought further:     But what about those who have loved ones who live however they want to live and who do not live with Jesus and pray,   so that they can stand before a very Holy God and receive a new home in Heaven?

A permanent home.  Not like our temporary ones that get dismantled.

A safe home forever.   Jesus paid the Mug Money for us.

A home with no more death.

A home where jigsaw puzzles are not needed to help figure things out.

WE “SAW” IT !!

January 27, 2015

Asteroid 2004 BL86.     Well, we were seeing it but we didn’t know it — but it was worth it!

It’s a cold, cold night here in the Far North.   This cold —

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Those are the numbers my car’s rearview mirror reported as I parked in the right-hand lane of a lonely country road.    Son and I went out at the appointed time,  11:19 p.m., to be exact,  to watch the asteroid pass by overhead in the constellation of Cancer.
We passed many deer on the dark roads to get there,  and a large dog was barking in the distance, hopefully tied up because we were alone in the midst of large fields,  cold and dark in the moonlight.   The moon was a lovely hazy thing,  but not too bright for skywatching.

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And then we took out our binoculars and set up a telescope.

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The telescope is black, but the reflection from my taillights colored it red.

Up above there were light bands of haze across the stars,  but we were able to locate Jupiter and Sirius and the cute little star cluster called M44, in Cancer.  The asteroid was scheduled to transit M44.

We looked.  We gazed.  We stared.  Our fingers turned numb…so did our nose and toes and everything else.

We saw very dim stars and watched to see if their location changed slowly.   We made patterns in the stars and watched to see if the patterns changed shape or if one of the little stars extended itself away from the pattern.

We checked Google Sky on our phones.

Ast Jupiter

My attention strayed and I found Jupiter  with my telescope and enjoyed seeing its bands,  but it was too hazy to see some of its moons.

Our bodies continued to turn “Uncomfortably Numb,”  and we were finally forced to get into the car…and return home.

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But we checked —  there was the passage of 2004BL86!

ast path

Exactly where we were looking,  at exactly the right time.

We must have seen it.

 

SATURDAY RANT: WE WERE BLACKED OUT!

January 24, 2015

A little pictorial RANT today : ( but first some words ) –

The largest gathering of Americans united for an ideal occurred this week – the largest, that is,  since last year this time!

Hurray!  We know how to come together to protect good things… like Life itself!

Only you may not know about it:   The LARGEST GATHERING OF AMERICANS FOR ANY ONE CAUSE!!!!

Even most of the people in my classes this week didn’t see it coming –  and more tragically for the continued existence of our Republic  which depends upon a “Free Press”   —  they  didn’t even see it.

Are you among the willingly ignorant?    If your news source is American radio or television or newspapers,  (the entertainment-news media in which pretty young actors and actresses sit behind an empty modern-looking desk and read scripts handed to them from the teleprompter near the camera),  if THIS is your news source,  the answer is yes.   (Because they have a tool –  it’s called Blackout.)

(Yes, willingly ignorant victims, I guess.)

What do they tell us about instead(Forget “inflategate” – that’s just another manifestation of Gotcha!  journalism mixed in with the marxist promotion of covetousness:  don’t you envy the successful?  don’t you envy the rich?  they must have cheated and stole from YOU!)

No, what kinds of gatherings are we told about?   Why, the gatherings paid for  and promoted by the One-World Billionaire (G.S.  —  an est.  30 – 40 million dollars of his own money)) which brought out people by the dozens!    by the hundreds in some places!   And one time, “over a thousand” people – “unofficially”  counted.    Tens of millions of dollars to bring about “emotional,  race-baiting protests”  in Missouri and New York, protests meant to divide us Americans.

Compare that to 300,000 this week.   More in past years by official Washington D.C. police count.

You missed 300,000 Americans this week  and were given a steady diet of hundreds of Americans over the past months.

There are so many sources of news out there.   No wonder they want to take the Internet down.

Oh, yes,  the pictures.   300,000 Americans ( mostly young people, I noticed)  also carried signs:

(“Can’t we all just get along?”)    —

Coexist

Future sister.  Future doctor.  Future teacher.   Future . . .  everything.

Future Sister

 

Got mean parents?

 

Mom's going to

I don’t like “crowd”   pictures because cameras can be made to lie,  but this really was a very large lively crowd of mixed ages  —   which was happy, peaceful, and left behind barely no trash or damage — they respect ALL life.

CrowdA seemingly endless stream of people on the streets.

From my Ghost Pictures folder:    “The Weeping Lady.”

 

weeping lady

She can see.   She sees.

 

BLACKOUT!  is just a tool used against the Citizens of this World.

TWO CLASSROOMS

January 22, 2015

ghosts

Beautiful snowfall recently.  Just had to stop and watch the slow and steady downward drifting of the white flakes.   Next summer I’ll just remember, “Oh, yeah,  snow is pretty…”  —  and that’s all, so I wanted to stop and take the time to experience what a snowfall is, while I was seeing one.

Takes time.

But, then, just as happened in the last posting or two,  there was a deep, dark melancholy seeping into this day.  The bright snowflakes were only an overlay on top of the reality of this world.

school maam
You all know I’m a teacher, by nature.   All my life, from early childhood onwards I’ve seen the world through the eyes of someone responsible for teaching others.

So the melancholy of this day has its roots somewhere around 30 years ago,   when my children were old enough to no longer need a mother to be in the home, physically,  all day long while they were in school.   I could go back to public schoolteaching!   My schedule would be roughly theirs, and I would not have to abdicate any of my motherly duties.

But there was no need for me.   When I had been a public schoolteacher, I had 28 to 34 first graders in my classroom each year.   Now,  there was no need for any more teachers.    Classroom size had fallen to somewhere around 20, but  there was  still an oversupply of teachers.

Where were all the children?

Answer:   In my home state,  TWO CLASSROOMS WORTH of children,  like my dear little first graders,  had been burned to death!  cut up into little pieces!  torn apart by machines!   and in other ways tortured while they were still alive.    50 – 60 living babies PER DAY!

If somehow a baby survived,  he was thrown into a nearby trash receptacle, according to eyewitnesses.    Until he died.

No more little children to teach… or to love… or to raise to be our new mothers and fathers and scientists and doctors and inventors and businessmen and laborers …  and good citizens … and souls who have the opportunity to choose Eternal Goodness …

school chil

How many have we lost?     57,000,000 Americans and counting?    59,000,000 ?

It’s not melancholy.     It’s January 22nd.

“ON THE STREET WHERE YOU LIVE”

January 21, 2015

 

(With apologies to Alan Jay Lerner and “My Fair Lady” — I have a “street where I live” too.)

Well, if I can get it all together,  this is the street where I live:

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Thanks to a Christmas present from Daughter, via the New York Times.

And probably the google maps that they used:

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That’s me,  right about in the center, right under lots and lots of those darkest trees.    You really can’t even see my roof.

My first thought:   Oh, this is really going to be hard, all those trees, like those impossible jelly bean jigsaw puzzles.

Then, as I got going:    Oh, this isn’t so bad.  I recognize everything in the picture!!   This is where I Rollerblade and bike ride and take long walks….  everything is familiar to me!

Three hours later:     This is awful!  Why does my daughter want to torture me?

I’ll feel better in a little while and I’ll want to attack this puzzle again.  And again and again and again.    I found out that I like the activity of picture-puzzling.     It’s good for the brain, I think.    It calls on a different sort of mind activity, a different sort of concentrating, a different sort of “seeing.”      Self-discipline.    Perseverance.   Analyzing.    Some sort of  pre-imaging.    Mental assembly of the parts.     Seeing the whole in the individual parts.    Tolerating deferred gratification.    Perspective control.

Seeing your life from a different perspective!     My first experience with “perspective”  is this aerial photograph of me –

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I’m down there!  I’m in a teeny, microscopically small red dress waving up at my friend who is flying overhead, taking this photo.    Maybe you can’t see me in this photograph of a photograph,  but from this angle you can see the dark opening for my backyard pond, just above the center point.

Perspective.   I didn’t think he was flying very high, yet I am insignificant.     Once when I flew right overhead on my way to Detroit,  I looked down and couldn’t even see this neighborhood.      I look down and feel me dwindling down into nothing.

I am an insignificant dot of hoped-for significance.  

I’m going to have a lot of time to think about that as I assemble “the street where I live.”

 

A CLOD IS WASHING AWAY

January 20, 2015

 

Here is a beautiful sight which greeted me yesterday morning –

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Just like those beautiful night visions I photographed (a few blog posts ago),  this one held me there for a while, until I remembered my camera, so I could get myself unstuck from the window.   This is my backyard pond, and it looked like a shining lake that winter morning, reflecting the sunrise colors.

The funny thing is,  I had just taken a photo of that pond in the previous afternoon:

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It was looking well-used, and it made me happy to see all those ice skate tracks on the surface.  My neighbor said afterwards,  yeah, it’s getting time to zamboni it again.  Not exactly his words, but I’m so glad that he and his sons can make good use of my pond in the winter.

It’s a connection.  A neighborly connection.

creek overflow    Some day the pond may not look like that.  Things will change  because every spring, if there is a lot of sudden snowmelt, part of the creek bank and even the side of the pond washes away.    Great clumps of dirt are removed, by Mother Nature,   ( great clods of dirt)  .    Things change, but I’m sure that connection with my neighbor will always be there.

This was supposed to be a happy chirpy little posting,   but the day turned rather melancholy.  I received word that a man in one of my classes, a man who has been coming for several years now,  has become suddenly very ill — and now we know why he didn’t return to us this year after the holidays.   He is unable to answer emails and voicemails.  And he is somewhere out of state,  and we don’t know where.

Then, a friend came to visit with me today — 

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We hadn’t seen each other for a long time, but we’re still connected by our friendship,  so we had a lot of catching up to do.  For a time, she sobbed as she told me of the loss of a good friend, how it happened,  her role in it.   I understood.   I’ve lost four who were very close and dear to me in these past four years.

Like the clods of dirt on the side of my pond and creek,  parts  of us wash away as we live on this earth.   It matters.  It affects us.  Because we’re connected.    Because we’re human beings, capable of love and affection.   Because we were made by a God Who is Love, and He acts and creates out of His love.

This was not an easy thing for me to come to believe.  My childhood was filled with fears, tears, loneliness and emotional pain, to a degree that almost drove me mad.   It was startling to learn that, above it all,  we are   supposed to   feel connected and these connections are precious.  I didn’t believe it.

When we had to learn the Englishman John Donne’s “poem”  For Whom The Bell Tolls,  at 14 years old  I angrily wrote a rebuttal, in verse.   His poem starts out  “No man is an island…”  and my rebuttal began “Every man is an island.”   I believed I had stated my case well.

Now, at my age,  the emotional pressure is finally off of me…  and I can begin to believe that the connections we have with others is a very precious aspect of our natural lives.  And that’s why it’s painful to see the “clods” wash away, a little at a time,  which is also natural.

John Donne didn’t mean this to be a poem,  he meant it to be a meditation after he heard the town church toll out the bells for someone who had just died.

No man is an island,
Entire of itself.
Each is a piece of the continent,
A part of the main.
If a clod be washed away by the sea,
Europe is the less.
As well as if a promontory were.
As well as if a manor of thine own
Or of thine friend’s were.
Each man’s death diminishes me,
For I am involved in mankind.
Therefore, send not to know
For whom the bell tolls,
It tolls for thee.
 

Such beauty we can enjoy!  Like my pond in the soft morning sunrise.   But always, we must wonder, who will be the next clod to be washed away by the sea?      What connections will be “lost”?       (That is the meaning of the black bear on my tea table;  bear, never far from me;  symbol of the hidden dangers that suddenly rush out at us.)

Life here is not intended to be permanent.

A better life is intended for us.

Deo gratias.

MLK DAY: SEPARATION OF CHURCH AND STATE?

January 19, 2015

I thought I should make a little comment about Saint Martin’s Day today.    (Now, you know the difference between the Left and the Right lies in the sense of humor to be found in one and not the other, right?)

So,  with that said and with a little help from Patriot Post,  here is my bewildered comment on today’s holiday.

mlk

 

In my opinion, he was a courageous man,  whatever history reveals about him.   May we have more Americans with courage.

 

USE FRIDAYS WELL

January 16, 2015

(Not for the fainthearted):   

With great sorrow  appropriate to a Friday in real life, and in union with the Passion that we remember on all Fridays, I turn from “beauty” yesterday to beastly actions of those who live without God’s beauty.

15 ball

What is it about the number 15 that keeps coming up in the last 24 hours?   It was fun yesterday to think about the date:  1-15-15.  But I read newspapers from all over the world, and  blogs and editorial comments too, and the date isn’t fun anymore.

And 15 has unfortunately  come up in my readings — on this Friday .

So,  on the one hand, everywhere that Christendom (still) exists,   Friday is a day for penance, in the form of fasting, perhaps, and abstinence, certainly,  and a duty to  contemplate Good Friday, the day of the week of the Crucifixion, that 3-day , history-splitting event which ended all animal sacrifices because the One Sacrifice was accomplished.

cry unlabeledAll men must still die.   All Christians must still follow the Lamb of God all the way through death.  True Christianity is not for sissies:   We unite ourselves with Him and with His Passion and with sorrow, suffering, passion, and death of all people all over the world.   Because the world-without-Christ is a dark and sorrowful place.

cru manAnd so I come to that number 15 on this day of the Crucifixion of Christ.

The man above was crucified by ISIS.   It was explained in a news article today that crucifixion is the preferred way, that is, the most chosen method,  of execution by the ISIS militants.   In Syria alone,  in the past two days,  15 civilians were crucified.    Many times the victim is shot first,  but not always.  I’ve seen photographs of men and woman,  without clothes,  affixed to crosses. too graphic to post here.

15 people in the last two days.

saracen sword

And then there is the news story out of Saudi Arabia.    A woman in the “holy” city of Mecca was beheaded this week in public.   They weren’t too good at it because although the executioners used a big sword,  the first cut only injured her.  Eyewitnesses say she was screaming in pain.  It took two more slashes with the sword to get her head to come off.

Graphic?   It sure was to this poor woman, who cried out her innocence for as long as she could.   The story continues that sometimes the victims of official beheadings are given painkillers first,  this woman was not.   She was Burmese, and the date of her death was January 12th, and YouTube had the video for a while; perhaps it’s still up there.

The year 2015 is proving to be a more deadly year than years past.  Nine people have been beheaded in Arabia’s first city so far this year.   What is that,  a little more than one every other day?

“2015” doesn’t have such a happy ring to it anymore.   Want to know what’s happening to Christians in Nigeria today?    How about a local  Hindu government decree to wipe out every Christian from  villages under its jurisdiction as reported last week?

This is a time for sobriety underlying our joy.

Or a time for joy underlying our sobriety.

Use Fridays well.

“ROSES” IN THE MIDDLE OF THE NIGHT

January 15, 2015

     1-15-15  !!

       1/15/15    . . . 

Pretty cool date today according to the American way of writing dates!   1-5-15  was pretty fun too.   And 1-1-15, although that drives me nuts because I am a perfectionist when it comes to my handwriting, and I’m never good enough at making all the number ones look the same.

It’s the middle of January and I am in the middle of my First Week of classes in this new year.   That means about 125% of my time is devoted to class prep and fussing about all the little thoughts that should be stuffed into the lessons.     I study…sleep a bit…study….sleep a bit….all day long.   Since this is a 24-hour cycle,  I get to appreciate some interesting things in the middle of the night.

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I particularly liked this view.   It was pretty dark in the house, but my eye was caught by this beautiful pattern coming from my deck.      I stayed there looking at the pattern made by the lights on the deck railing, partially covered by snow, until I thought I’d better capture the view with a camera so I could go back to bed.

It’s beautiful.    Proportional.    Simple.     Restful.

The pattern will change as we get more snow and again as the snow melts.

Since it’s also very, very cold around here lately,  another common view in the middle of the night is this:

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That’s a fire in the fireplace, making things warm and inviting in the middle of the night.

Very inviting.   This is my home.    I’m invited!

I hope you all have some beautiful, interesting, inviting things to look at around your home  – anytime of day.    Beauty is everywhere.     I guess it’s a matter of taking time to “stop and smell the roses.”      Or see them.   Or hear them.

Deo gratias.

He made us to know beauty.

GIFTS OF THE MAGI

January 13, 2015

Today is the Octave of the Epiphany.  We draw our awareness of the Epiphany to a close today ,  with hopes that we know more, now,  on this Eighth Day than we did before this season began.
This revealing, or epiphany, of who the Christmas Baby really is was given to witnesses in three separate events, and there is a threefold trinity of meaning to plunge into.

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In the first event,  the Wise Scholars from the East witnessed the special Sign in the heavens above and followed it to the One the Creator had sent.   They came, they adored and worshiped Him.   And they paid homage to Him with Gifts.

Gifts that acknowledge  the true identity of the Holy Infant.

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(Why choose gold?)

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(Why choose frankincense?)

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( And why choose myrrh?)

Knowledge of these three gifts would instruct our minds.   The understanding of their meaning would mold and shape the essence of who we are as individuals.

The three gifts will set the pattern for our behavior as Christians.

So I do not put these facsimiles of the gifts away with my Christmas things,  because I’ll have to honor Him with  these gifts too in the coming year.

FRANCE: GRASPING AT STRAWS?

January 13, 2015

 

The vast Great Smoky Mountains of the United States:

P Great Smokies
When my road trips take me southward,  I always stop somewhere in the Great Smokies to visit the people and see their history in the many fine museums.  I enjoy their music:  “hillbilly music,”  maybe;   bluegrass music;   bluegrass-gospel music.   Renfro Valley,  you know?    I visit their pioneer villages.

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I enjoy seeing them do their crafts, and I enjoy talking with some of the ladies about handcraft skills that we share.     They freely share their knowledge and experience with me as we talk tatting, crocheting,  candle-making,   quilting . .  .

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I enjoyed speaking with a young teenage waiter in some restaurant in the Valley about his Christian faith, and mine.  Though different “religions,”  we have one and the same Lord.

You can find the soul of America there in the Smokies.   (for you politically correct:   of course you can find the soul of America in a few other places too)
What is soul?   It’s that which makes you alive and uniquely you.  Those qualities that make up the very core and essence of who you are.   It’s also the qualities that are typical of something and that make it special.   Soul or “anima”  can be the mind or intellect of the living person or of the collective mind and intellect of a nation.

It’s who you are!   It’s “who” and what a nation is!

Paris,  France:

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I’ve heard several people speak, now,  after the recent Rally in Paris.  Many were French, some were friends  and observers of the French.    They spoke about what went wrong in their country that resulted in the killing of 17 people by enemies acting from within.      What were the failure of their social decisions?  the failure of their intelligence system?     of their economy?    of their  prisons . . . ?

Each point was a good one, perhaps true,  but I thought how small each point was, like no one point seemed to be the crucial one that would solve the main problem of containing and controlling the people in their midst who want to kill them.

“They’re just grasping at straws,”  I thought, as the common American expression goes.

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Then I remembered my trip to a pioneer village in the Great Smokies, and how delighted I was to understand some of their craftsmanship.  I now understood how even a broom is made. With straws!     “You grasp the straws like this,  and then. . .”

Grasping at the individual straws is exactly how you build a broom!

I thought again of what I was hearing from France –  One at a time the Europeans were giving us their points of analysis,  focusing on “a straw,”  just one issue which they understood well,  and I realized what was more important was the spirit in which these comments were given —  they were trying to save France.  They were trying to save Europe!   They were reaching down into the core and essence of who they are and finding out what was “different.”

Other  speakers were thinking about their own nations who are in similar trouble.   An Englishman who wanted England to be English spoke.   A Dutchman who is known for wanting to preserve the Dutch national identity spoke.   Even the leader of the Germans, who got her position by indicating that she could look “beyond Germany,”  made some helpful and stirring remarks that hinted at self-preservation.

Last night Son was with me, watching the big game, of course –

ohio state

Hurray for the Big Ten!!

Afterwards,   watching the local entertainment-news program,  we saw more Europeans speak,  and Son remarked that, at last,  it sounds like more and more people over there are rising up to protect themselves.

marseillaise
I am not with “the Revolution,” — it killed many people like me —  and I’m not with the continuing Progressive revolution — it still seeks to repress people like me;  but I heard that the Marseillaise was sung officially  in government for the first time since World War I !    Perhaps they can pick up all their “straws”   and rise again!   Arise!   Avant tout … !    …non?

That is significant and hopeful.   According to much prophecy,  the restoration of Europe hinges on the restoration of  Christian France,  of France-Before-Progressive-Socialism.   It’s our only hope against the tyranny of the global governance of “the Revolution.”

Seemed impossible.

MISCREANTS

January 12, 2015

To the 3.7 million people in Paris  this weekend:  “Wish we were there.”

I guess I’ll just second the editorial opinion of the Daily Mail:

daily mail

 

These men gave the people of France a collective cold shoulder.

They turn their backs on the American people too.   We are both shamed and insulted by these four men —  who were placed in high offices of our government.

For all the apologizers for these four men,  who give the old tired excuse “Bush did it!!!”  —  meaning President  Bush did not go to Spain right after the many were killed there at the train station in a terrorist attack, you are missing the point.  This rally in France was not merely a memorial for those 17 in France who were recently killed.  It was not merely some kind of mass mourning;   it was a RALLY AGAINST ISLAMIC TERRORISM.

Separate and apart from the public expression of sorrow and solidarity with the French people,  this rally was a statement against terrorist tactics and those who use them.

We Americans join.

It is the four miscreants we reject.

 

 

 

 

 

 

SUCH A MOMENTOUS ACT

January 11, 2015

 We’re still within the Octave of Epiphany, a season which is always humbling, seeking such a Momentous Act.   
Such a momentous act, on behalf of the whole world

Such a momentous act, prophesied for so long

Such a momentous act   . . . coming  with signs
And so the scientists throughout the centuries, knowing there would some day be a momentous, cosmic event that affects all humans,  searched for those signs.

Now, we know the heavenly bodies of light were given for marking the seasons and times and signs of the times.

Night sky

The “pictures”  that the bodies of light made, the stars and the planets,  told the story of creation and of the history of mankind, and they keep turning and changing and telling more and more of our story.

Call this astronomy.   Call it astrology,  but do not think of the debased hopes of those who use astrology for their own selfish purposes.    In no way should we look to the stars for fortune-telling or to honor the non-human (imaginary) entities.

The ancient scientist-astronomer-astrologers looked to the stars for knowledge of everything, past, present, and future.

Zodiac pictures

And then at last, the “men from the East”   saw a sign in the sky, and comparing notes and texts and ancient prophecies, concluded that this is indeed the sign indicating that momentous act the world has been waiting for.

stylized star

In certain regions of the world they are called magi.  And they are “kings”  because their studies had made them capable of more than the average understanding, and their knowledge had made them trustworthy to rule over a few others around them.

magi and herod

They followed the star all the way to Jerusalem.    Not mere travelers.  Not mere merchants.   Not mere scholars.  They were kings, and they walked right into King Herod’s court, and inquired of him, king to king.   Such a momentous act as the Star portended would be known by the king of the area where the star led them.

He is an important ruler of the people.    Surely he would know!
Surely?

PICK A NUMBER FROM 0 TO 9

January 9, 2015

People who live within a 500-mile radius of me will know what I’m talking about.

number wheel

Did you pick your number yet?    5?    3?   7?   1?   0?

Wrong!

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That was the thermometer this morning,  on the deck,  just outside my door.

Our local weatherman hasn’t been too generous with his Fahrenheits lately.   Mostly single digits.   Not unusual here in the Far North.   Kind of interesting, like we’re under siege from Nature.

I’m prepared:

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That is a fire waiting to happen.

And this is some good hot soup, just waiting to happen:

 

SAMSUNGThat’s a package of  oxtails.   The soup turned out rich and meaty, perfect for a winter day.

Hot soup.  A fire in the fireplace.   More time for knitting and reading.

Ahhhhh….  these fleeting days of sub-zero weather!

GUM CONTROL FOR TODAY

January 9, 2015

From a letter written by George Washington: “But if we are to be told by a foreign power … what we shall do, and what we shall not do, we have Independence yet to seek, and have contended hitherto for very little.”    (a thank you to The Patriot Post)

Sarcastic humor like I used in the last post is an extreme form of humor, strong and aggressive.   It’s never good to use against a person;  but it sometimes helps when you make a point against an issue.
And this issue is a serious one, with our independent existence at stake.  And what is that “foreign power”  that Washington spoke about in the above quotation?  In our day it’s not hard to find:

From a recent article entitled: CANADA REFUSAL TO SIGN U.N. SMALL ARMS TREATY SPARKS DEBATE, and then an American commenter (not my words):

Canada refused to sign the UN small arms treaty.       We did.
Wait a minute.
Aren’t we the ones with the Second Amendment?
What did our Rulers do to American citizens that Canada refused to do to their citizens?

So read again those words by George Washington:

 “But if we are to be told by a foreign power
… what we shall do, and what we shall not do,
we have Independence yet to seek, 
and have contended hitherto for very little.”     

This is NOT “American History”!   Here is a news article from today’s pile of news:

 For people to be able to enjoy their “Second Amendment Rights”, Attorney General Eric Holder proposed to a House subcommittee that Americans should have to wear “gun-tracking bracelets” in order to “lawfully” discharge a firearm in the future.

“I think that one of the things that we learned when we were trying to get passed those common sense reforms last year, the Vice President  and I had a meeting with a group of technology people and we talked about how guns can be made more safe”, Holder stated to the subcommittee.

Holder went on to say, “By making them either through finger print identification, the gun talks to a bracelet or something that you might wear, how guns can be used only by the person who is lawfully in possession of the weapon.”

I don’t understand that last sentence;  perhaps the words got garbled by the recorder.  But the meaning is there.  The threat is there.    Want to wear an RFID bracelet if you are a gun owner?    And notice that the words “Second Amendment Rights”  is put in quotation marks –  by the newspaper reporter!

In all of Christendom,   individuals have had the right to protect themselves,   to protect their families,   and to protect their property.   And in Christendom, remember,  the laws of the Christian nations were harmonized with Christian principles, and  our God-given, unalienable rights to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.

A nation throws off Christianity at its own peril.

(Yes,   just “Imagine,”  Mr.  John Lennon —   But, sadly,  we don’t even have to imagine anymore;  we have the example of the 20th century  world leaders without “religion.”)

Disclaimer, maybe:    I don’t own  gum to put in my hand.

GUM CONTROL

January 9, 2015

Nope.   Not a typo.   The topic of this post is Gum Control!   To wit:

SAMSUNG(I’m still putting my house back together after the total re-carpeting of a few months ago,  and among the boxes of stuff I’m going through was this very old cartoon.     It was published in 1983, I think,  but is still so very topical because although  Americans know what they want,  our Rulers just can’t seem to accept it.)

“What’s all this talk about gum control?”   the little boy asks.

It’s a bit amusing.   Two young innocents, presumably not yet educated,  not deep or sophisticated in their knowledge of the issue — but content to see the world from their  own small, young perspective.   Their own small, immature, young perspective.

Apparently there is still some “soul-searching”  type of analysis being broadcast to the public after the Islamic terrorist violence in France.   We all know now that the French policemen who first arrived on the scene were UNARMED.     They were not issued guns, by policy of the French socialist government.

Should we re-learn  that old adage:  “Never bring a knife to a gunfight”  ?   Was it not reported that the terrorists had quite a few (big) guns?    The French policemen brought their …  bicycles.

Nope.    And, apparently,  the lesson that we “should learn” is that there needs to be tighter, stronger gun control laws.    (That ought to show the terrorists how much we oppose them!)

And what should we fear?  According to the national and international  entertainment-news media,  we should be on the lookout for the rise of the conservatives!    The socialists who brought us gun control and unlimited migration of radical jihadists into European countries  (and into North America)    fear  anyone who is not a socialist/progressive/leftist/ — anyone who does not think like them.

Which is odd.   Because the twelve men at  Charlie Hebdo that were killed were killed because they didn’t think like . . . the terrorists.

It makes a certain sort of sense, though.   If you have strong gun control,  then you can have stronger social control.

Let us not think too hard about it though.   If they take our guns,  maybe we can keep our gum.    And the little boys can go on with their happy gum-chewing lives.

 

A GOOD MAN FOR CUBA

January 8, 2015

I will miss my Tuesday Tributes to our Rulers who manage the outcome of our elections for their purposes,  but I’m not going to continue them on into 2015,  and the following epitaph plays an important part in my reason:

“I have loved justice and hated iniquity; therefore I die in exile.”

St-Anthony-Mary-Claret   These words are on the tombstone of St. Anthony Mary Claret of Spain, a very great man, a skilled administrator, a helper of the poor and oppressed, and though he was repelled by power-hungry government officials,  he was much sought after to settle political problems.    He loved God’s justice and he hated man’s iniquity towards other men.

Because the times were difficult and full of revolutions,  he tried to avoid becoming entangled with the parties.   He was full of love for the poorest of people and became a missionary priest.     Eventually he was raised to archbishop and sent to Cuba.

 

He  fell in love with the Cuban people.

cuba

For six years he traveled across the island, on foot, up and down the beautiful green mountains in the interior of the island, and he visited just about every small village he could find,  stopping off at hospitals and jails, defending the poor against oppressive local rulers. and teaching in the little churches.

church little

I’ve read his autobiography a few times and am always impressed by the physical hardships he endured while traveling in Cuba,  but how happy he was to come to the next little village and how much he loved the people he found there.

According to his biography,  he confirmed 100,000 Cubans and performed 9,000 marriages.  Thus he helped form the Christian conscience that is deep within the oldest Cubans who are alive today.    He is part of the Cuban heritage.

church cuban

He was called back to Spain and reluctantly but obediently left the island.    So great was his reputation, that he was next called to be the confessor to the Queen of Spain.  He was now closer to political strife and the various parties declared him their enemy.       The exile spoken of on his tombstone was not only his exile away from Spain that he had to endure but also a self-imposed exile away from politics which he attempted throughout his life.

And so,  in a minor way,  I weakly  imitate this great man and turn away from weekly “tributes”  to our Rulers who have taken over the governing of my country.  I hope it is only temporary and the unknown man who was raised a sunni socialist and given a someone else’s social security number will soon go away —  but, really,  they also took away the government of St. Anthony Mary Claret’s Spain and replaced it with a revolutionary . . .  substitute that proved unworkable in the long run.

How great is Spain today under a socialist government which is under the umbrella of a socialist superstate?

St. Anthony Mary Claret sought to serve God with personal holiness and by easing pain where he found it and teaching souls to love God and each other.     That is a worthwhile life to imitate.

What will be on my tombstone?

“Tribute to Tuesdays”  —  Good-bye!

EINSTEIN SPEAKS

January 7, 2015

(I’m practicing brevity.    My next post is too long, so I have to discipline myself to  be brief…very brief.   So I’m going to let Dr. Einstein speak, and then I’m not going to expand on it – which I could! –  I’ll just ask some questions for you to consider.)

einstein

 

“Never do anything against conscience, even if the state demands it”   (Albert Einstein)

…………………………………………
Does he know the implications of that statement?
Does he know what it could cost us?

Why did he tell us this?

What was he warning us about?

What “state” was he thinking of?

What years did Einstein live?   What was the powerful “state” that he cautioned us against?

Did he know of Operation Paperclip?   (google it)   (subsequent testimony shows that it wasn’t only scientists who were brought into our country.)

Einstein lived and worked in “the home of the brave and the land of the free”  when it’s citizens were brave and free.    Did Dr. Einstein foresee a time when it would be difficult to find bravery and the courage of convictions in this land?

Does he know what this would cost us?

 

JANUARY 6TH – I’M INVITED!

January 7, 2015

January 6th,  Epiphany!

people on epiphany

A holy day specifically pointed at me — and people like me.     I am invited to take part!!

You see,  up until about 4,000 years ago, roughly speaking,  God the Creator dealt with all the peoples on this planet pretty much the same.

people ruins

All peoples of the world in all their civilizations all related to God the Creator on the same terms, those terms being what was more or less vaguely passed down through the generations.

One of these groups of people living around the Arctic Circle were “my people.”

PEOPLE BALTIC

Long ages of the human race passed on through time.

But about 4,000 years ago one man received a unique call to relate to God differently for a particular, specific purpose.   This was Abraham,  who by the strength of his faith in this God who called him, became, for this purpose,  the father of a great nation, the specific people we call the Israelites, through which one day the Redeemer-Messiah of the world could take on human flesh.

People israelites

This Chosen Race from out of Abraham lived in covenant with God, bearing witness to the existence of God, worshiping Him properly,  and waiting for the Promised Redeemer-Messiah.

And then, finally,  we celebrate at Christmastime the coming of that Redeemer.  He came to his own people, just outside of Jerusalem.    He came after many signs and He came with many signs.

people from persia

Now, today, Epiphany,  it becomes clear that the Redeemer-Messiah is presented to  the whole world, not just the Israelites.   And even though I am a Gentile whose ethnic origin is far, far away from Jerusalem,  like these Wise Men who were Gentiles too,   I’m invited to come to the Crib. . .   invited to look at the Infant who would be my King, my Redeemer, the Son of God,  my God.

Just follow the signs.

 

Israel