Archive for March 2015

FALCONRY AND THE GENTLE SAINT

March 31, 2015

Raptor:   falcon,  hawk,  eagle,  kestrel,  buzzard . . .  I shall just use the word “falcon.”

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Falconry is a sport in which a man participates in the joy of the Hunt with his  trained falcon.  It’s a hunting sport shared by bird and man.    The
bird is a raptor,  and he is doing what he was created to do — to hunt for his prey  which becomes his food.

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The falcons used in the sport are well-cared for and well-trained,  but they are wild, and one must use utmost caution and respect — and protective
clothing!
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The falcons are often hooded while they’re being trained and while they are being transported to the hunting area.

Falcon hooded
The birds are not frightened under this hood because they hear the voice and verbal signals of his trainer.  There is a kind of learned trust between the
two:   (“You human creature  reliably satisfy some of my needs so I won’t tear your throat out“).

The sport has existed for thousands of years on every continent, and there have always been teachers and students,  methods and skill sets,   schools of
thought,  and  falconry clubs.    You need a lot of room for this sport!  These men are each carrying their falcon.

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So,  why?  What are these people experiencing?

To  touch and stroke the warm, strong body of such a creature;  to control its responses after patient, persistent training;   to learn its habits and desires; to gain its trust.  To be able to communicate with a natural killing machine like that is to  break through the boundaries that separate species.  

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The raptor is a strong, efficient killer,  given extraordinary eyesight that is exquisitely sensitive to movement;  given strong muscles for flying,
vibrating with tense readiness for making the kill, and for tearing apart the food; and a single-minded focus on its prey.

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“Its single-minded focus on its prey” — That is,  its biological urgency for food,  and when once satisfied, there soon follows the need for more and then more.  The falcon’s  life is a quest to satisfy that need – or it will die.
falcon eating

Whether trained or not,   this is what falcons do.   Falconry gives us the ability to appreciate this creature by sharing some of the joy and triumph of
the Hunt for what is needed.

My own favorite kind of raptor  (heh – as you probably know):

RAPTOR 2

Now, I don’t believe for a minute that humans ever dragged women by the hair out of their caves to satisfy some desires,  nor do I believe that humans
tore into the flesh of dead carcasses to satisfy their need for food.    Not even “millions of years ago.”      The human intellect separates us – irrevocably –  from the animals. 

It’s true we are born with a similar desire to satisfy our physical needs,  but we’re also born with desires for other needs which we long to satisfy:
Friendship, Love,  Knowledge, Truth, Beauty, Wisdom,  Joy,  Spiritual Peace.   And all these are names by which our Creator can be known.

We can learn a lot from the majestic raptors.   Created with just the right faculties to satisfy their desires and with a single-minded focus on
obtaining what they want.

St. Francis deSales,  the gentle, loving saint,  teaches us that we too should look to the falcon and ask ourselves, “How much do we want the Goodness of God?”   with what desire?    with what strength of will?
Bar wavy

How much . . . ?

Like the hart running through the woods,  panting and thirsty,  longing for that clear spring water flowing in the brook.    *

Like a Lover longing to be near his Loved One.   **

Like an individual, alone,  longing to be known, to be heard,  longing to be touched by the One who made him.   ***

 

Book Open clipart

 

*     (Psalm 41:1  — or 42:1,  Jewish numbering)

**   (Canticles  7:10  —  or:  Song of Solomon 7:10, Protestant naming)

***  (Psalm 76:1   —  or:  77:1,  Jewish numbering)

 

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WHO PAID FOR THE LIONS?

March 30, 2015

Dramatic kind of title.  But I mean it.   

Today is the kind of day when you just can’t help breathing a sigh of relief:

moneybagToday. . .   I carried my tax money to the Post Office.

Well,  not quite like that,  but my taxes are paid.

It’s a bitter-sweet accomplishment.   Mostly bitter,  because I know what  my tax money is used for.

My money is used to pay able-bodied men to NOT work.  It’s used to pay  foreign  citizens’ education and medical expenses and food and living quarters and special interpreters because they refuse to learn English….     My money is used to support false but politically correct “science.”   It’s used to tear apart little human babies — while they’re still alive but haven’t been born yet.   It’s used to pay the media to make the wicked powerful look good in our eyes. 

It’s used to indoctrinate our children,  American children,  into a false religion undesired by their parents:

Blonds made to bowSee the little blond-haired American kids?   This is from the school curriculum commanded by our government schools.  Common Core.   This was in Florida but it’s happening in every state.     Courtesy of MY tax dollars.

So how do I feel about this?      Doesn’t matter.     Better question:  why do I pay these taxes?

Because the Lord Jesus explained it to us.    First He said, “Do it.”   (That is,  pay your taxes.)      And to make the point clear,  He performed a minor little miracle,  kind of cute, really;  probably with a patient smile on His face.   He told a disciple to find a coin in an unusual place!!!

One like this:

caesarHe said there are things you are obliged to do for God, and there are things you are obliged to give to the Caesars in your life.   “Go ahead and pay your taxes.”   

But didn’t He know what the Caesars were doing with some of the money?     Political corruption?   Sexual immorality?    Cronyism?   Bribery?    Inefficient bureaucracies of Rome?     And this:

whose dollars pd for the fuel to burnPersecution of Christians!     Those fires are individual Christians burning.    Today Islam does it.   In Rome the pagans did it.     There are also a kind of contemporary record of the persecution of Christians:

whose txes pd for the lionsI would ask you:   “Whose taxes paid for the lions?”

 

 

 

PALM SUNDAY TIME AND NO MORE TIME

March 29, 2015

This will be a different kind of Palm Sunday story.   I had a brush with physical weakness today,  which made me think of time,  the use of our time, and time running out.

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Just like the best known image of the Palm Sunday event seems obscured through the palm branches,  my  Palm Sunday was obscured by a curtain of amazing physical weakness.

Palm thru donkey

I wasn’t sick with a sickness,  but my body was more than half asleep,  it was numb and vibrating at the same time,   my eyes burned,  and I was suffering from very low blood sugar, alternatively feeling faint and feeling nauseated.

Kneeling, sitting, or walking,  whatever was close to my hands,  I clung onto for dear life,  hoping not to attract attention by whapping down onto the floor.

The words of the Gospel that were read to us, the words of the prayers and of the sermon all seemed far away and rather muted  —  but here’s what occurred to me:   I knew the story well enough so that I could dimly follow along and reaffirm my choice to accept my King — but it might not have been that way if I hadn’t learned the story well, when I could, when I was feeling okay.

The event (of Palm Sunday)  happened almost two thousand years ago, and  I’m sure there were many in Jerusalem then who were totally unaware of what was going on.

And there were those who chose to be indifferent;  that is,  uncaring or even hostile to  “all that noise”  coming from that crowd over there.

Palm  Branch
But there were those who went close to the event, the ones that threw palm leaves or olive branches or even their own outer cloaks down on the ground so that the King could ride over a royal pathway.   They expressed whole-hearted enthusiasm for what this Man could be.

Make no mistake!   That Jesus entered Jerusalem on a donkey   (an ass)   meant one thing to the people of Jerusalem:   This man Jesus was entering Jerusalem just as the great King Solomon once entered,  also riding on a donkey,  cheered by the crowds and received by them as their King.

It was His triumphal entry into Jerusalem.

Triumphal?    Yes.   And no.   Yes,  He entered Jerusalem, received that day as  King.    But no,  not yet fully has the world realized he is King, that at His name “every knee shall bend, every tongue confess, that Jesus Christ is King.”

That time is coming.

Meanwhile,  we are given time to choose our response.  Oblivious?   Indifferent?   Hostile?     Welcoming and cheering?    Joyous, hopeful, accepting  . . . ?

The crowds in Jerusalem had a chance that day to choose where they stand with respect to Jesus.   And every successive year of remembrance of this event gives us all another chance to choose where we stand . . .  until our years run out . . .  until our time runs out.

coming

Until we have physical difficulties and our senses our clouded and there will be no more opportunity for us to wonder about the coming of the King — and its implications for our everlasting soul.

Rejoice!    on Palm Sunday,  while we can.

FOR FUTURE REFERENCE (Personal)

March 28, 2015

This really is just a personal note — for future reference.  

One of the “random thoughts”  that arises in The Spruce Tunnel is that springtime is not all bunnies and daffodils.   There is a lot of outdoor  work coming up and I need to start thinking about what has to be done.    I’ll refer back to these photos to help with the “central planning.”

It all looks good, at a quick glance.   The snow is gone here in the Far North.    The house survived.

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But this is the pretty little flower garden right out my front door:

SAMSUNGPretty little flower garden not.    Many trees were taken down last Fall,  right before the snow came.   Lots of debris revealed after the snow goes.

And all those tree-cutting trucks left their mark:

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Some of the tracks are six inches deep.     Near the top of our To Do List is smoothing out the surface . . .  somehow.

And those big machines left big holes:

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Those can be filled in and reseeded.

But what to do about the ground that is covered in wood chips? Finely chopped wood chips spread  all over:

SAMSUNGThat’s what it looked like after I raked today.     Outdoor vacuum cleaner?

So — I’ll have to come back to these pictures to remind myself that the work out there is really real.       I’ll have to study all those home improvement store catalogs.     I’m going to have a long To Do List.

And plenty of exercise.   Won’t have to join a gym this year again.

Spring flower banner

MARCH 25th — VERBS AND THE VIRGIN

March 25, 2015

This is general information for the people in all my classes.  I don’t quite yet have our class blog up and running, so here is a public place to get a message across.

llama verb

First, let’s get this matter out of the way.  Do you know your parts of  speech?  Do you know the parts of speech of the English language (since I’m writing in English)?     Do you know how to define a “verb”?

How about “tense”?    Past tense, present tense,  future tense?     Good.

So today is  “3-25-15″  as I said  in the title of this post.   Yesterday that date was in the future.   Today it’s  in the present.   Tomorrow it will
be in the past.     Today,  March 25,  Christendom remembers something in the past.

Annunci

It remembers that a young Jewish maiden,  a virgin,  was asked to cooperate with the Most High God in the salvation of all mankind.    “This is what
needs to happen,   this is what will happen to you;  are you willing?”

“Fiat.”    “Fiat mihi secundum verbum tuum.”

And so it began with this Annunciation which we celebrate on March 25th,  nine months, of course, before December 25th.
Now,  this same event is recorded in Jewish Scriptures.   The very same event!       A prophecy from the very same God Who confronted Mary,  who was that young Virgin prophesied  centuries past.

ahab in field

The Jewish Scriptures record the prophecy thusly:   “Therefore the LORD himself shall give you a sign. Behold a virgin shall conceive, and bear a son, and his name shall be called Emmanuel.”   (Isaiah 7:14)

“The LORD”  is the same God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob;  the same LORD that the prophet Isaiah in the picture above who had a message for King Ahab;  the same LORD whose message was given to Mary;  the same LORD Christendom worships today.

Same event;  same God.   That’s why knowing your parts of speech is important    — so you don’t make a mistake this Spring.

Verb chart

More than 2500 years ago,  King Ahab was the king over the Israelites,  who had received the prophecy.     These same Israelites also celebrated Passover, which in a veiled way instructed them about how their salvation would be effected (through the sacrifice of a Lamb some day).

When the Virgin was born, she was told her Son would be this Lamb of God.    And it happened.   And that’s why Christians celebrate the Feast Day commonly called Easter, and they don’t celebrate the Passover –  because the Passover celebration looks for the events in the future but Easter looks back to the events of the past.

My dear classes,   so what?   

Several decades after the Virgin gave birth,  after the Passion and Death of the Son of God,  the Resurrection and Ascension,  approximately a hundred years later,    a new religion  developed among some Jews  (the Israelites).    It had to be a new religion because their Temple had been destroyed and there was no longer any place for them to make the required sacrifices.

One of the celebrations of this new religion involved what they called a Seder meal.

Now, if you have a new religion that departs from the original one that was commanded by God,  do you also have a new concept of God?    Are you worshiping the same God anymore?

Participating in a Seder meal is for the people of the new Judaism.       Participating says you too are looking for the coming of the Lamb of God — in the future!    

Agnus Dei

If you are looking for the Future Lamb of God,  you are basically denying the Lamb of God who has come.

And now you  have a good reason for a polite “no”  when you are invited to a Seder– even if a benighted priest or pastor should ask you!  Let us celebrate this March 25th instead!     Knowing what this Feast means will keep you out of trouble!

A MAPLE SYRUP LESSON

March 23, 2015

Yesterday I wrote about my trip to the Maple Syrup festival at our local nature center.

It takes a lot of work to collect the sap in buckets and then boil the sap until the water evaporates away and only the maple syrup is left.

mani making in winter

My friends and I wonder who on earth would have discovered all the special techniques and long hours it takes to turn sap from certain trees into a tasty treat?

Well,  now I know.

mani telling the story
Once, long ago,  the Great Father Above  made  People and then gave them many good gifts to help them and to make their life pleasant.

Many of the People lived near great forests of maple trees.
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Soon the people discovered that they could just break a small branch off a tree and drink the thick delicious syrup that poured out from the branch.

But after a while the wise leader Manabosu saw that  all the people wanted to do  was  sit under the trees and drink the syrup all day.   Manabosu saw that it was too easy for the people to get their treats, and they didn’t want to work anymore.      The people had grown fat and lazy and weak.

mani huron warrior
They no longer took care of their villages or their fields  or their hunting and growing tools.  Manabosu told the people that it was wrong to stop working for what they needed and to live lives of idleness,  but the people didn’t listen.

Manabuso went to the Great Father and told him what had happened.  Then the Great Father decided that the people needed to learn a lesson.   So he caused the rainwater to fall into the tops of the trees so that the sap became thin and weak like the rainwater.

When the people missed their sweet drink,  they had to learn how to use the thin sap.  They had to learn how to find the sap and take it out of the trees.  mani wood tap dripping
And then to collect it in baskets made of bark from the trees.
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They learned how to put the sap in large bowls made by carving out logs:

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They learned how to heat the sap by placing large hot stones in the log container.   They made tongs for the hot stones out of deer antlers, which you can see on the ground near the syrup-making log.

mani hot stones

And they learned how to boil the sap until most of  the water was gone.
mani toiling hard

They learned to boil it until it became like a hard rock and then they could carry it with them when they traveled.

And then the Great Father Above made it so the sap from the trees would run for only one time each year so that the people would  remember that once they had forgotten that they must work hard  for what they wanted.

And that is such an important lesson for the people of this earth that many tribes of people tell this same story.

mani manabhozho

I know this is a true story because I took some of these pictures myself on my pleasant walk through the maple forest:

SAMSUNGAnd I know it’s true because  the same Great Father Above sent a man to us to tell us that we must work hard if we want to eat:

“For also when we were with you, this we declared to you: that, if any man will not work, neither let him eat. “    (II Thessalonians 3:10,  in the Bible)

 

 

MAPLE SYRUP TIME!

March 21, 2015

(Post 2 of 3 for my new Reader who likes the “Food Part.”)

Come with me to a Maple Syrup Festival today!!     This will be a photographic tour,  so not too many words from me.

From the Website of  our local nature center:

SAMSUNG The trail map:

SAMSUNGI didn’t think I would need this map.   It had too many miles on it!!      But the parking lots were full to overflowing, and I found a place to park very far away from the syrup festival.

I walked through many parking lots but didn’t mind very much.   Good exercise,  good weather,  and interesting things to look at:

SAMSUNGThis looks like fun for some other day.

Walking on and on and on,  I finally came to a Do Not Enter road:

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At last I saw a tent –  seemed like a good sign.

SAMSUNGIt turned out to be a place to eat —  What else?

SAMSUNGAnd what  do you eat at a  Maple Syrup Festival?     Flap jacks, sausage, and maple syrup.

Outdoor dining:

SAMSUNGOutdoor dining in winter jackets.   This is the Far  North, after all.    It smelled good, but I didn’t come to eat,  so I went on in search of those who were making the syrup.

SAMSUNGThe pathways through the woods were rather nice,   nice and long,  so you had to keep looking for the little yellow signs near the ground.

Ever watch that television series called “Grimm”  ?

SAMSUNGNever mind.

It wasn’t really that scary.    . . . In the daylight.

SAMSUNGThat red “house” up ahead was the educational headquarters for maple syrup making.     Earnest volunteers presented good information.

SAMSUNGWe were given the opportunity to try our hand at drilling tap holes.

Which is why there were many trees like this:

SAMSUNGYou make a hole (somehow)  and then choose a tap:

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Here’s a cross section of what happens when you insert a tap into a tree trunk:

SAMSUNGThose dark gray rectangles are the taps.  How do you know how many taps to use on a tree?

SAMSUNGThere are measurements and formulas based on those measurements…   Unfortunately, the young volunteer was not very good at math.    He was college-aged, I’d guess,  but he couldn’t explain to someone what  diameter or  radius meant, but he offered to the person that orange tape measure.  That’s okay.  He did clarify for me that the taps break into the phloem, which results in the “leakage” of the sap into the tap and out into the attached bucket.

SAMSUNGThese buckets are covered so no one has to stay there for a few days shooing away the bugs and flies.

SAMSUNGBuckets on many of the trees.

And here’s what you do with all the sap that you’ve collected:

SAMSUNGIf you don’t have fancy equipment or a big enough kitchen,  you boil the sap over a wood fire.

SAMSUNGOr you can use a modern “evaporator.”   Either way there is the wonderful smell of wood smoke and maple syrup in the air.

Although,  we were told,  one can tap into other kinds of trees,  even walnut,  the maples have the most sugar in their sap.   So here’s a good look at a maple stand in case you’d like to recognize when you’re in one:

SAMSUNG(I’m told it’s easier to recognize when the leaves are out!)

So – let’s eat!

SAMSUNG(Or let’s buy!)

Lots of maple products for sale.    Candy, syrup,  maple butter,  and even maple granulated sugar – with recipes for its use.

This table had maple syrup root beer:

SAMSUNGSomehow I came out with two bags full of maple stuff.      (This comes only once a year, right?)

Then it was time to find my way back to the car.

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It really was a lovely walk.

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It would have been so easy to have stayed home,  but it was very worthwhile to go to the Festival.

Sometimes I like the way our tax dollars are spent.

(Next time I’ll tell you why we have to work so hard to get our maple syrup from the trees.)

COMMUNITY FRIDAYS

March 21, 2015

(In honor of a new Reader of The Spruce Tunnel who especially likes the Food Part,    I’ll offer up the next three posts in honor of “food.”)

I could call this “Fish Fry Fridays,”  but as a kid who moved around a lot,  I see the things I long for — and that is a sense of community.    A sense of belonging to a community.

SAMSUNGAnd that’s why I pulled into this rather full parking lot, ready to meet a nice friend and some of her family members – also very nice! –  and enjoy some good company and sort of good food.      Looks like many others had the same idea.

SAMSUNGIt’s a safe and gentle place to meet.   No pressure.  No performances.    Low key and welcoming.   My friend is a smart, competent, professional young woman who has an intelligent and gentle approach to life.    I was soon to learn that her cousin and his wife and baby have a similar intelligent gentleness about them.     It was good to be with them.

SAMSUNGIt was crowded inside too!   I snapped pictures as I walked along — kind of “shooting from the hip” — so many photos came out a little fuzzy.   But this gives you an idea of where we’d be spending the next hour or so.    Among them.    “Among”  was a nice word that evening.

SAMSUNG  The “food place.”   Where you get your food.     Fried fish.  Baked fish.   Baked potatoes.   French fries.   Macaroni and cheese.   Creamy cole slaw.   Vinegar-y cole slaw.   Pickles, bread, and all the condiments you might need.     Iced tea.  Lemonade.  Milk.   Coffee.  Water.      All my life I’ve seen signs for “Fish Fry”  at this time of the year.    You can get a fish fry at restaurants or at churches.    Only recently have I participated.    If you abstain from meat on Fridays,  why not do it with your community?

You don’t have to belong to a church to take part in their fish fries:     I had excused myself “for a minute”  to go get something . . . .

SAMSUNG     . . . . but the “minute” turned into about fifteen minutes.    I went up some stairs and came across a not-so-old man just struggling and struggling to breathe as he tried to ascend.   He said he couldn’t get the elevator to open for him.    Poor man!    I stayed with him until he was at the top – and still living! —  and then went on down the hallway.    Then   I met a group of people  who were lost.   So I showed them how to get into the fish fry area.   Before I got back to where I was going,  I met more people, one with a big wheelchair,  who didn’t know how to leave!    So I walked them down the hallways until they could see the outdoors.   When I got to where I was going,  the room was full of little daughters and their mother, so I had to go back downstairs again where I started from.

So, see?   You don’t have to know your way around.   It’s a fish fry at a church and you’re invited!     And there’s a community there of good, intelligent, and gentle people.

TRIPLE TREAT IN THE HEAVENS ABOVE

March 20, 2015

Just as yesterday was a special day in Christendom,   today is a special day for the astronomical world.

When we survey our world, we talk of beautiful things in the “heavens above and the earth  beneath.”    It’s poetic.     The “heavens above”  are filled with things we can see, like the birds (and the airplanes) and the clouds and the moon and the sun….

geese blueThe “highest heavens”  often refer to that region in space where there are things we can’t rightly see without the help of powerful telescopes and charts and diagrams, and it reaches way out to the edge of known space at the borders of the next dimension,  far beyond where this quarantined Earth exists.    It’s the realm that angels transverse — or maybe other unknown beings —  and is more a concept than a geographical “space.”

And Heaven . . .  that is a term used to describe where God is, and where we cannot be — in this life.    It is Other and Eternal and All-Good.

Today our triple treat comes from the nearest heavens, that which we can see.   This is where the moon revolves around the earth and the earth-moon system revolves around the sun.  Sometimes all three heavenly bodies line up in a straight line, and that’s called syzygy.   Cool word!

Here is a New Moon syszygy.    We would see a very dark moon in the sky.

syszygy today

During some times of syzygy,  the moon is directly in the way of our sun, we get a Full Moon,  and being the same apparent size as the sun,  the moon blocks our view.

eclipseThat happened today and could be seen in full in northern Europe, especially towards the Arctic Circle.    (Europe’s electrical grid relies on solar power for as much as 20% in some places.   Did the grid hold?    Did it flicker?)

So the first “treat” is this is the day of a total eclipse.

The second treat happens because the moon revolves around the earth, but not in a perfect circle.   It is  slightly off, a slightly flattened circle.    So sometimes the moon is just a little closer to the earth than at other times.   When the moon is as close to the earth as it can be, following its pathway,  we call that  perigee.

The second treat?      When syzygy and perigee happen on the same day  we have a Supermoon!

Supermoon

A syzygy can give us either a new moon (very dark)  or a full moon (the very brightest.     Unfortunately,  this unusually large, bright moon, called a Supermoon,  is best detected by astronomical instruments,  not our naked eye.     (Camera shots and atmospheric magnification notwithstanding.)

The third treat  is also best understood with instruments and maps and charts – that is,  it’s intellectually known.  Today is the day of the Vernal Equinox,  when the direct rays of the sun fall  on our equator.     There,  daytime and nighttime should be an equal amount of hours.   The equinox is a kind of astronomical halfway point between deepest winter and highest summer.

Well, here’s an uninspiring chart of the rays of the sun hitting directly perpendicular at various points on the earth.   Try to imagine that the earth is in motion, and the sun, relatively speaking, is not.   Because our planet is tilted at about a 23 1/2 degree angle,  the direct rays of the sun land perpendicularly in different places each day.

earth equinoxesSo there’s our Triple Treat for today,  March 20, 2015:

1.  Total Eclipse of the sun  

2.  A Supermoon

3.  The Vernal-Spring Equinox

Spring flower banner

Happy Spring!   

JOSEPH, WHO IS WORTHY

March 19, 2015

Today is a rather big day in Christendom:  It’s the feast day of St. Joseph, the man given the responsibility to be the guardian, the protector,  the provider, and the head of the Holy Family.

jOSEPHE jESUS CHEEK

Could we not look for a moment at the man chosen for this role and wonder about his qualities?

The man who protected the Madonna during her young motherhood —

who protected the madonna during her young motherhood

Often shown with lilies,  a symbol of purity.    It is a great thing to be associated with purity.   Hard to remember nowadays what that even means, and yet there has been only one Holy Child.   Pure.     Purity recognizes Purity.

pure enough

Purity in love,  St.  Joseph,  a man who could truly cherish the Christ Child:

who cherished his

Ever present in his family’s life:

who protected

The original  “home schooling”  —  all members of the family present for each other,  in harmony, at work and play:

home schooled parents present

St. Joseph, the man entrusted with the raising of the Child Jesus —

who taught Him a trade

St. Joseph, watching over the prayer life and education —

who taught Him how to pray

We can  speculate, to our benefit,  about the qualities of this holy man.  We can meditate on his life for our sure example.   We can invoke his example and his intercession as Patron of Family Life and Households.

We do not know when Joseph died,  but we do surmise , in faith, and with logic,  that at the time of his death he had the Blessed Virgin Mary truly at one side and the Son of God at his other side.   Again, in faith,  we believe this is a companionship in death that is attainable by all humans.   Not a certainty,  but attainable,  depending upon how one has lived his life — and with Whom.

It is a big day in Christendom.    It’s like a Treasure of knowledge that is waiting to be picked up and possessed.

crossThe artwork above is artwork,  not photographs, not history.   It is meant only to convey what is truthful, in beautiful images that speak to mankind.

 

 

DESPICABLE BULLIES

March 18, 2015

It’s hard to stay comfortable in this world and enjoy tea and shortbread, as in yesterday’s post.    But I think we need to be informed.

From American  entertainment-news media today:  At first I thought a former vice president should not have (1)  consented to an interview with Playboy magazine, and (2)  should not have been so blunt in his criticism of the man that occupies our wh*  it  /e  h** ous /e —     But after hearing and reading world news tonight,   I think the former vice president was way too restrained.

From Reuters news service  comes a  report of 85 Christians killed by Muslims and 27 more injured in an attack “over the right to use water.”    I’m sure it would be easier for them if they wiped the Christians off the (Nigerian)  map.   We hear of these attacks over and over again,  and there is more involved than merely a “clash between  semi-nomadic tribes”   over water rights.

Every week.  Raids on Christian villages.   Kidnappings and rape and disappearances of Christian girls.      Mass killings.

Now the Nigerian leaders, both political and religious, are asking the United States of America for help.   They are begging for our help.   Islam is not just a “political party”  that is winning elections and may soon rule Nigeria.    That’s a First World concept.     Islam in Nigeria is murdering thousands of Christians  (and animists) — and they need outside help against murderous and well-armed attacks.

Well,  they don’t stand a chance for our help.   The Buraq-Hussein kind of people have sent David Axelrod (American) into Nigeria to meddle in Nigerian elections to help elect a Boko Haram supporter for their president.   ( This is the group that is developing a policy of using little girls as human suicide  weapons.    According to Frontpage not too long ago:   A girl thought to be as young as seven-years-old on Sunday killed herself and five others in a suicide bo* mb in  g in northeast Nigeria as President Goodluck Jonathan conceded his government had underrated the capacity of the Islamist extremist group Boko Haram.)

(And didn’t we just have this meddling in Israeli politics?)

Worse.   The official policy of the Buraq-Hussein people is that Nigeria will get NO AID from the United States of America until and unless Nigeria REWRITES ITS OWN CONSTITUTION ACCORDING TO THE WILL OF those who have control of America’s government purse — and the new constitution must violate Nigeria’s moral principles and weaken and fracture Nigeria’s family structure.

Again.  We’ve done this before.    Not “we”!!!   Decent Americans don’t think they have a right to dictate  to other countries and rewrite their laws.
Americans don’t.   But those who have control of our government do.

It is despicable.

People need our help.   And our “leaders” are acting like bullies.

They congratulate themselves with hashtag poster campaigns — but 300 Christian girls are still missing  –  and our policies still favor the radical-islamists.

Let us remember the Mercedarians,   among whose famous members are St.  Peter Nolasco and  St.  Raymond Nonnatus,   who organized a group of young men who pledged to raise money to ransom Christians who were kidnapped by Muslims – and failing the release of a Christian,  pledged to put themselves in the place of the Christian,  allowing him to go home,  and agreeing to stay in captivity,  in his place.  

Their actions didn’t stop the advance of murder and kidnapping across the Mediterranean region,   but it did give Christian comfort and aid to many tens of thousands.      

The need over there is still very great.    Is there a different kind of “Christian”  today?

 

A VERY UN-IRISH ST. PATRICK’S DAY

March 18, 2015

Scotch Shortbread from my oven:

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I know.   They’re not Irish.

Slow down and have an un-Irish St. Patrick’s Day with me.

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A very strange St. Patrick’s day it was….  I felt quite estranged from all the happy little traditions of the past.   It’s innocent fun “to be Irish” on St. Paddy’s day, of course.  Get a pinch if you don’t wear green.  Hear the Irish music played on the radio.   See an Irish movie or two.  Drink something green.  Eat corned beef and cabbage and make some good Irish soda bread.

None of these things have anything to do with St. Patrick,  but they’re so fun and innocent anyway.  However, I did none of those things this year.

The times have changed.  We’re not a happy society,  at peace with who we are,   and fun is rarely “innocent.”     Never before have I seen such a divorce between a holiday on the calendar and the reason for the holiday.

So I baked what I wanted to bake.

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And, yes, that’s 1:04 on the clock.  After midnight.  My friends know my body lives in the “Hawaii time zone.”    I still have a few hours left.

I’ve been making shortbread all my life, but this was a new recipe.  A new recipe for new times, I guess.  At least I kept thinking about the loss of this fun, family holiday;  it’s gone, and so why not move on…  with someone else’s recipe.

Cold dough from the fridge:

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We don’t really celebrate the nice things of America’s past anymore.   Ireland is no longer Catholic.   The big Boston “St. Patrick’s Day Parade”   has been stolen by those who are opposed to the teachings of St. Patrick’s  church.    Those who drink green beer couldn’t care less about the part of Christendom that the Irish represent.  Not just for this day,  but for always.

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Nothing like “tea and shortbread”  to soothe the nerves.

So,  I’m thinking this new development is kind of sad in a nostalgic way;   but, on the other hand,  the Church still has the real St. Patrick.    He was just a teenager when he was kidnapped,  brought to a  rough pagan country and enslaved there.  Then followed years of 24/7 workdays,  out in the open with herds of sheep,  never enough food,  enough clothes,  enough protection from the weather, enough human companionship.

It “ruined”  his teenage years, we would say today.   But God didn’t abandon him, and more importantly,  Patrick didn’t abandon God.   When he was released and found his way home,  he instantly entered rigorous training so that he could bring – in an official capacity –  the Gospel of Christianity back to the land of his captors.   What an abundant field of souls he saw that were ready to learn about the One True God!

We can stand side by side with the real St.Patrick today,  and have faith in the same Christ,  love for his same Jesus.  We can read his writings,  read his biography,  read about the strong faith of the Irish people which started with him.   We can be happy for the good work he did, and we don’t need green food and green noisemakers.

Yeah, this was an okay St. Patrick’s Day.   There’s still time left to read a prayer that presents St. Patrick’s faith.   It’s  one  I read often,  nearly every day.   No wonder this kind of faith has lasted through the ages!

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If you have time, enjoy the language.  Observe the strength of Christian faith.

St.  Patrick’s Lorica  or:  The Deer’s Cry

I bind unto myself today
The strong Name of the Trinity,
By invocation of the same
The Three in One and One in Three.

I bind this today to me forever
By power of faith, Christ’s incarnation;
His baptism in Jordan river,
His death on Cross for my salvation;
His bursting from the spicèd tomb,
His riding up the heavenly way,
His coming at the day of doom
I bind unto myself today.

I bind unto myself the power
Of the great love of cherubim;
The sweet ‘Well done’ in judgment hour,
The service of the seraphim,
Confessors’ faith, Apostles’ word,
The Patriarchs’ prayers, the prophets’ scrolls,
All good deeds done unto the Lord
And purity of virgin souls.

I bind unto myself today
The virtues of the star lit heaven,
The glorious sun’s life giving ray,
The whiteness of the moon at even,
The flashing of the lightning free,
The whirling wind’s tempestuous shocks,
The stable earth, the deep salt sea
Around the old eternal rocks.

I bind unto myself today
The power of God to hold and lead,
His eye to watch, His might to stay,
His ear to hearken to my need.
The wisdom of my God to teach,
His hand to guide, His shield to ward;
The word of God to give me speech,
His heavenly host to be my guard.

Against the demon snares of sin,
The vice that gives temptation force,
The natural lusts that war within,
The hostile men that mar my course;
Or few or many, far or nigh,
In every place and in all hours,
Against their fierce hostility
I bind to me these holy powers.

Against all Satan’s spells and wiles,
Against false words of heresy,
Against the knowledge that defiles,
Against the heart’s idolatry,
Against the wizard’s evil craft,
Against the death wound and the burning,
The choking wave, the poisoned shaft,
Protect me, Christ, till Thy returning.

Christ be with me, Christ within me,
Christ behind me, Christ before me,
Christ beside me, Christ to win me,
Christ to comfort and restore me.
Christ beneath me, Christ above me,
Christ in quiet, Christ in danger,
Christ in hearts of all that love me,
Christ in mouth of friend and stranger.

I bind unto myself the Name,
The strong Name of the Trinity,
By invocation of the same,
The Three in One and One in Three.
By Whom all nature hath creation,
Eternal Father, Spirit, Word:
Praise to the Lord of my salvation,
Salvation is of Christ the Lord.

bar simple green divider

Legend says that this powerful prayer was composed by Saint Patrick in the year 433. He was aware that there was an ambush to try to kill him and his group en route to the King’s court. It was during the march that they chanted the sacred Lorica or Deer’s Cry – later known as St. Patrick’s Breastplate.

As the druids lay in hiding, ready to kill, they saw not Patrick and his men, but a gentle doe followed by twenty fawns.

St. Patrick and his men were saved.

There are different versions of this, of course, and the modern ones seem to lack rhythm and depth, so I give to you the traditional version.   Copy and paste it somewhere for your own use.   Honor St. Patrick, really.

ELECTION FOLLOW-UP

March 17, 2015

Flag Israeli waving

It wouldn’t feel right if I didn’t comment on the outcome of the last post,  that is,  the outcome of the election in Israel.

It appears the Likud party has won.   Netanyahu retains his office and will very soon form a coalition government,  a little different but perhaps not too different from the previous years.     As an American with a different political system,  I scarcely understand how this works,  but it seems sensible.

The only hint of a possible change in governance is the reluctance of the main opposition party to concede the election, and the frequent use of the word “bitter” to describe the losing party.    That doesn’t bode well in politics —  unless the new government is stable enough to handle the tactics of the opposition, which it usually is.

Still, one must watch resentment lest “opposition”  becomes “enmity.”

It appears the “leadership”  of the American government is also “extremely disappointed”  — another phrase that doesn’t bode well in politics, but the reports  stop short of “bitter.”      Unfortunately, said American opposition to Israel has its fingers on some powerful tactics that can be extremely disruptive to stability in the Middle East.

Case in point:    Iran backs Hezbollah  with its money, weapons, and training.    Saner people have Iran and Hezbollah on their ter/ r* or ist list —   but the Buraq Hussein people have now removed Iran and Hezbollah from their own list of ter/r * or ists.     Why?    By the wave of a magic “pen” they are suddenly not a danger to the world?    Is this one tactic these people can loose on Israel?      Or is it just a pitiful penny they have offered to Iran so Iran will agree with the currently-attempted “peace treaty”?       A strong, independent Israel is certainly a distraction to the “treaty” process.

I’m not a political analyst,  in case you wondered.

Just one ignorant woman asking silly questions.

HOW I SPENT MY MONEY WITHOUT EVEN TRYING

March 17, 2015

Well,   technically, my money was spent for me.

I just paid about $350,000 to run buses in Israel!!  The buses will be filled with people who promise to vote socialist in today’s election.

Chitiz

Of course, the burden is not entirely on me;  all Americans will share in this duty.    (One socialist leader helps another socialist leader-to-be, no matter what the people want.   How fun that they have our tax money to do it with.)

We’ve sent some professional political agitators to Israel too, to help with their own agitators.     (Their cost is not completely figured into the 350 grand.)   What do “the people” want?  I don’t know,  but here is a photo of a very large demonstration against the socialists because they know their taxes will become unaffordably high with socialists in office:

higher taxesA few of my friends are either socialist or some other name that denotes extreme Left.    They are good-hearted people and want the State to be kind to others.   And they spur me on towards greater charity  towards those in need.    But a Leftist political party doesn’t achieve charity;  it doesn’t fix problems, and by its very nature must prolong the problem in order to have a reason for its own existence.    And it must make other people pay for its own ideas of “charity.”   Which means we have less of our own money to be charitable with.  Which is partly why they are demonstrating against ruinous taxes.

This whole thing reminds me of my very, very young parents when they first moved to Chicago.  My father wanted to do the “adult” thing and vote for his first big presidential election.    He called up to find out where he and my mother should go to vote — and there came a van,  a mini-bus,  collecting people in the neighborhood,  telling them where — and how — to vote.   (This is Chicago, after all.)    Whatever was said on that van convinced my father to never, ever vote again.  Even at such a young age my father was a man of honor and of principle and of honesty.

My father never said the word “politics”  without using the preface “dirty.”    He pointed out to me that Chicago Pond Scum always rises to the top of the political machine —   and now it seems the Pond Scum has overflowed . . . all the way into Israel.

I’m sorry for that.  We have no business trying to influence other people’s elections.  I have no “dog in the fight” over there in Israel.  Likud vs. Labor?  Either outcome will affect Middle East politics, and consequently world affairs.

My father taught me to recognize “dirty politics”  when I see it,  but he would have been outraged to find out I had paid for it.

talmud page

Perhaps the very young rabbi in the photo above has the best solution.    He is Rabbi Chitiz,  not yet 30 years old,  older than my father’s first attempt to vote.     He said we should  (that is Israeli citizens should)  consult the Talmud.    There,  with many citations from the Talmud and form the Bible,  he found out that the best ballot is one that’s had all the names and descriptions of the people removed!     “We should vote for the empty ballot itself!”     What a commentary!!

(You can read about him in today’s  Haaretz  and in  Jerusalem Post.)

Who says scholars don’t have a sense of humor!

 

LAETARE (REJOICE!)

March 16, 2015

 

pink  happy roses
Took  me a couple days,  but I have no doubt now that the Yellow Roses   (see last post)   were a definite and singular Sign that I’d received Divine Help with certain of my difficulties.  That doesn’t make me “happy”;   that makes me scared.  Humbled.  Very small.  Responsible now.

happy face

But I was a little bit happy.

And what an interesting detail that the weekend that I received the Yellow Roses came on the weekend of Laetare Sunday.  Long before I came into this world,   the Fourth Sunday in Lent, this past Sunday,   was designated as a day of joy.   Now it might seem odd that “joy” comes smack in the middle of the Lenten season,  but the Church, in her wisdom,  has a reason for that.

priest in pink

Yeah.    It’s pink.    The priest is in pink on Laetare Sunday.     Pink is a happy color.

If you are having a “good Lent,”   meaning you are having a rigorous Lent and are accomplishing much for your soul and are learning much,   then you would probably be feeling a little fatigue by now;  a little Lenten fatigue from all the , fasting,  abstinence, prayers, penance and mortifications….

And so here, this Sunday,  is a pause.   Pause, now, to think of why you’re having Lent.   Why you’re doing what you’re doing during Lent.   Think of the joy at the end, the joy of Easter, and most importantly,  the joy at the end of your life, if  — (IF ! ) —  about a nanosecond after you die, you hear those words:  “Well done,  thou good and faithful servant.”

Oh, no,  our words can’t describe the joy we will have and have forever —  but at least we can pause now,  and in this life feel the joy that is to come.

Hard work is always worth it.   Hard spiritual work is always rewarded.

And all over the world —

laetare front

—    you get to rejoice, if you’re within Christendom.

Deo gratias.   

 

A JEW, A GENTILE, AND A CONFIRMATION

March 14, 2015

(We are all one family,  human;  and our Creator is alive.)
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Those of you who know what these flowers signify,   will understand when I say that these words I will write are words of amazement,  of confirmation,  and of life-changing gratitude which I must express publicly.

It was 10:00 this morning when my doorbell rang.   I was “not quite ready for prime time,”   but when the doorbell rang a second time,  I moved to the front door without really planning to do so.

There was my next-door neighbor,  beaming with joy,  holding a bouquet of yellow roses.   My neighbor is a man a little bit older than I am,  he is married,  and he is a Jew, and I am not.

He couldn’t wait to thrust these flowers towards me, saying, “These are for you!  It is such a lovely Spring day!”

I had never seen him so happy,  happy from the inside out, and pouring forth good will and joy….

therese face  I knew in an instant the Source of these yellow roses – for they could be only yellow roses, and a good thing it was that I was in such shock or I would have collapsed there on the spot, and perhaps alarmed him, for he himself could not know what he was doing.

He just couldn’t have known.

yellow rose and hand

He is a Jewish man, a business man whose business takes him frequently to Manhattan, the center of commerce, and back here to “fly-over country,”  where he teaches business things at our local Big Ten university.   But he is a Jewish man first.   And though he doesn’t speak of it often, he walks with the knowledge that the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob watches over him and walks with him.

As I do.

Both St. Paul and Moses wrote of the Great Mystery which will some day not divide us.   St. Paul said:   “… and so all Israel should be saved,  as it is written:  There shall come out of Sion He that shall deliver and shall turn away ungodliness from Jacob.  This is to them My covenant, that I shall take away their sins . . . they are most dear for the sake of the fathers.”

Previously,  the Prophet Zachariah had told the Jews that one day “all Israel shall recognize Him whom they had Pierced,” long before they actually did that piercing in Sion.

The Jews held the knowledge of mankind’s Salvation, and Salvation is for them too.  There is no division within “the One who came out of Sion.”

And now,  the confirmation(s):     That the God of Jacob lives still.   That the One who came out of Sion was really, actually sent to this world.    That all the saints are in spiritual communion with God and with each other.  That even death does not break the communion and mutual love and aid we desire for each other.

(One young small soul in communion with us)

therese let fall

Confirmation,  that one tiny little soul,  taken from this world “too young,” promised to spend her time in Heaven doing good on Earth,  showering down blessings like flowers on all who call upon her for help, to bring souls to God.     Her trademark is yellow;  yellow roses.

It should not have happened that a Jewish man should have come to my door this morning, “out of the clear blue sky,”  and given me a bouquet of Yellow Roses.    It need not have happened that God answered my prayers.

I cannot even express my gratitude to God with plain words.

So . . .   (sorry for the ad)  …   take time to listen:

I know.  The song is too big.   It’s just me.   Just a small little life, currently overwhelmed with difficulties and uncertainties,  just enough little faith  to plea for help; and an impossibly personal and definite confirmation from above.

FUN WITH A STEAM CLOUD

March 10, 2015

(Kind of musing randomly today.  That happens sometimes in the Spruce Tunnel.)

I was thinking:  Sometimes the goal is worth it,  but the way forward is not so clear.

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It’s a common human dilemma.  You want to achieve something,  but the steps to get there are not all laid out for you.  You’ve got a duty to do,  but it’s not at first obvious how to go about the task.

You can’t see beyond the step you’ve taken.
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I knew where I wanted to be last Sunday morning,  but a big poof of steam filled the air and obscured my vision.  That was okay.  My head was already foggy with an impressive night of insomnia added onto the first morning of Daylight Savings Time.    I knew where I was going  although I couldn’t see where to put my feet.

For about a minute I walked forward “in faith.”      Time enough for my mind to send up to me a little metaphor for Life itself.  “I know where I want to go,  it’s not always clear how to get there.”

But that’s no reason to stop . . . walking forward.

Then the steam parted.

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It was coming from a familiar manhole.   Now the way forward was just plain fun.    I don’t know what’s going on down there under the sidewalk,  but the steam stuff is fun to walk over.

I love puddle jumping and when there’s a puddle over a manhole,  it’s the best fun of all to hear the big splashy metallic “Shplungk!”

I taught my grandson everything I know.   

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So we walk forward — sometimes through a steam cloud, sometimes enjoying the fun,  and once the steam through that manhole burned my leg.  But that’s fair too;   life hurts sometimes.   It just seemed to me on  Sunday morning that whether our vision is clear or not clear,  we’re going forward to the End.

To God on that Sunday morning;  and at the End of my life,  I’ll stand before that same God.

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But, see,  the further you keep walking,  the higher you go, the brighter it gets.

St.  Paul kind of knew about walking onwards through steamy air.   He says:   “For now we see as through a glass, in an obscure manner; but then face to face: now I know in part; but then shall I know even as also I am known.”  (I  Corinthians 13:12)

ANCIENT BEAUTY CALLS IN WINTER TWILIGHT

March 8, 2015

I wanted to say that this beautiful snow white curve caught my eye and stopped me in my tracks one day.  I wanted to write about it —

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—    how I had just gotten out of my car and was rushing into the house with an armful of stuff,  full of plans for my next errand,  and how I almost missed the pleasure of light and shadows on my snowy front yard.

Just low sunlight and shadows and crusty snow that seemed to glow.

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I wanted to say something about Beauty being everywhere, if you only took time to look, and the pleasure of Beauty can draw you to the Source of Beauty,  Beauty Itself.
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But the memory of the words of a man who lived before me overshadowed my relatively small thoughts, and his words lifted me even higher than I could have gone by myself.     He too was stopped in his tracks by Beauty, and he cried with words of sublime longing for union with the Source  — and with regrets for how much time he had spent looking for It elsewhere. . .

His words:

“Late have I loved you, O Beauty ever ancient, ever new, late have I loved you! You were within me, but I was outside, and it was there that I searched for you. In my unloveliness I plunged into the lovely things which you created. You were with me, but I was not with you.”

From errand to errand I rushed around that day, thinking I was doing good, doing well;  but I was only preoccupied with the things of this world,  using up lots of the precious time allotted to me in this life.   “You were with me, but I was not with you.”

“Created things kept me from you; yet if they had not been in you they would have not been at all.”

The created things of this world  keep me from their Creator.   This man knew what the ancient Greeks knew,  that everything is sustained within the Creator,  the Source of Beauty holding everything from moment to moment in a state of existence.

I crunched around in the crusty snow of my front yard, finding the right photographic angle:

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“You called, you shouted, and you broke through my deafness. You flashed, you shone, and you dispelled my blindness. You breathed your fragrance on me; I drew in breath and now I pant for you. I have tasted you, now I hunger and thirst for more. You touched me, and I burned for your peace.”

This is the strong cry of a man for his Creator, and after that first taste, the courageous cry for more, the manly willingness to hunger and thirst and  long for his Creator.   (I’ll give you his words all together in a minute here.)

The man’s name is St. Augustine,  and I took his mother’s name for my name as I entered the Church.    Because I too have a son.   So similar in many ways.
And my son was experiencing the Beauty of the same day’s twilight from within his own home.  It wasn’t snow white and contrasting shadows,  it was a beautiful Purple light that poured through his windows, and landed on the floor in amethyst.   It must have been remarkable in person.

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St. Augustine:    “Late have I loved you, O Beauty ever ancient, ever new, late have I loved you! You were within me, but I was outside, and it was there that I searched for you. In my unloveliness I plunged into the lovely things which you created. You were with me, but I was not with you.    Created things kept me from you; yet if they had not been in you they would have not been at all.     You called, you shouted, and you broke through my deafness. You flashed, you shone, and you dispelled my blindness. You breathed your fragrance on me; I drew in breath and now I pant for you. I have tasted you, now I hunger and thirst for more. You touched me, and I burned for your peace.”  (from  Confessions)

cross

My dimwitted intellect can hardly break through my daily tussle with created things and see beyond,   but sometimes something points to the wonderful Beauty that must wait for all those who long for God,   “Ancient Beauty.”

“Thy altars, O Lord of Hosts, my King and my God!  Blessed are they that dwell in Thy House, they shall praise thee for ever and ever.”     (Prayer said on the Third Sunday in Lent during Holy Mass. )

MODERN unSCIENCE STOPS A “WHAT’S IT”

March 6, 2015

Well,  the title is confusing, I know.    And there are bigger things in the world to worry about – maybe.    This should be another fun  “What’s It?”  but  the modern version of “science”   (unScience)  is kind of messing with us.

Here’s the photo,  you’re probably familiar with it —

What's It Siberian-craters striationsYou’ve seen these, right?  They’re appearing in Siberia  and becoming so common now that the scientists are becoming alarmed.

See the striations along the inside of the column?  When I first started to look at these closely,  I thought some large round boulder must have blown its way into the earth . . .   no,  that didn’t make sense.    (Straight downwards?)    I thought some giant metallic missile, maybe,   had blown its way up from deep under the surface, scratching those striations into the sides of the blast hole.

….Or….   something caused those striations,  something with hard edges,  hard, slightly irregular edges to cut those grooves into the side.     I’m focusing on those striations;   and all of these unexplained new craters have similar striations.

Now, it’s pretty well known that modern science has cut itself off from the principles of logic (philosophy)  that had created the methods of legitimate science which produced so many discoveries and advanced our knowledge of the natural world.     It can be seen that the results of cutting science off from objective logic has been a psuedo-science, an unScience,   driven by political ideology.    If you don’t have classic principles of cause-and-effect or of non-contradiction, etc.,  then anything goes.     Toss out the philosophical principles of Christendom,  and you can have anything that you want, any conclusion you want.    (check out Charles L. Dodson, mathematician, and his book Through the Looking Glass.)

It’s true in  the biological sciences,  it’s true in medical science, it’s true in let’s call it meteorological science,  and here again,  it’s true when we look at only part of the evidence because the prevailing agenda says it  “must”  agree with some certain “cause.”

And that “cause,” of course,  is the political fiction of “global warming.”   You see, because the planet “is”  warming,  then that must be affecting methane deposits under the earth’s crust.   And then those pockets of methane must be exploding.     And so these craters must be the result of methane explosions.

Case closed?

So I can’t call this a What’s It because “science” has put forth its idea.       Now, something may have “exploded” out of there,  but I can’t imagine all those “explosions”  looking identical,  identical verticality,  identical shapes,  and all having similar striations etched into the edges.   (Does methane gas have hard sides?)

I don’t really need an answer that has to match the “global warming”  ideology.

I’d be okay with the modern unScientists saying they don’t know what this is yet.   Then I could use it as a What’s It.

 

(The author of Through the Looking Glass is better known as Lewis Carroll.)

WHAT’S IT? — #20

March 4, 2015

My posts have been a bit “heavy” lately –  I’m ready for a little diversion.   So here is #20  in my series called “What’s It.”   (See “Rule…”  below.)     I promise to learn some day how to make a Page Tab at the top and put all the What’s Its on one Page.

So here is a science What’s It:

What's It  #18

This object was photographed above our earth by a satellite camera that was taking photos of things floating around high in the . . .   ionosphere, I think.      The folded surface with a round hole blasted into it is an extremely thin membrane around a balloon-type piece of equipment close to the satellite near the highly sensitive photomicroscopic camera which took this picture.

In other words,  that strange white globe is microscopic in size.  About 10 microns.  About the width of a human hair.      The camera seems to have inadvertently caught one of these globes in the act of spitting a stream of substances with enough force to tear a hole in the membrane.   Spectrographic analysis indicates a biological substance of unknown origin.

The shiny tiny globe is composed of titanium and a little vanadium and some other things unknown to us.

Scientist Wainwright from the United  Kingdom calls the substance spewing out from the globe “a gooey biological liquid.”     (Yick.)

I need to make that Page Tab soon.  When I want to look at previous What’s Its now, I have to use the Search function at the bottom of the right-hand column and type in What’s It  # (whatever).   

And just to remind us: 

 Here’s the Rule for my What’s It series:   it will be a photo of something that no one knows what it is;  not even me.  I won’t trick you.   No one knows what these What’s Its are.    They will be a real photo of an unknown something.