Posted tagged ‘Lessons Learned’

THE CHARM OF BOYS

April 20, 2017

(An update on Cooper)

(Boys and girls.   Nothing like having one of each to appreciate the differences!)

When Hubbie and I were expecting our very first child,  we didn’t know whether we’d have a girl or a boy.    I wanted a boy.    In my naivete I wanted a whole basketball team full of boys – and then maybe a girl later.

Well.     After knitting little blue sweaters,  I got a  girl.

Appreciated having a girl.   So when we were expecting another child,  I though how nice it would be if she had a little sister!    So I knit little pink sweaters.

And then we got a boy.

I will have to say that after each birth, my only thought was “How perfect!”

Now,  I was more used to girls because  as I was growing up,    I had become the big sister of two little girls.     I understood them,   I knew all the subtle little things to expect.

But boys!    That was a new experience!    Straightforward.  Direct.  Practical.   Honest.   Not afraid to show delight.   And their sense of humor is really funny.

So I offer you two “boy”  samples.   One is a joke.    But it’s a boys’ type joke.    Non-sentimental.   Non-fussy.    Just plain funny.   (It’s all over the Internet, associated with the name of  Corden,  that’s all the attribution I can make.)     Here it is:

A 16-year-old boy in Bosnia broke a world record this week by smashing 111 concrete blocks with his head in 34 seconds. When asked how it felt to break the world record, the boy said, “Lampshade tricycle is my favorite flavor of pizza truck.”

Ha ha ha ha ha ha . .  .  really appreciated that!

And now there’s  another little boy in my life,  Cooper,  my grandson.     Just returned from a trip to Portugal.     Here he is,  straightforward,  direct, and matter-of-factly enjoying a visit with the pilot:

Cooper Pilot

He excused himself from his airplane seat and knocked on the “pilot’s door”  and had a nice long conversation about flying airplanes.    He knows quite a bit about airplanes — he’s on his SECOND passport book right now.  The first one got all filled up with stamps.    The pilot came out after a while and gave his email address to his Cooper’s Mommy, offering to help   in any way possible should Cooper ever want to become a pilot!   He called Cooper “remarkable.”

My word exactly.

This little boy takes on  the world exactly as it comes to him,  an attitude that is frankly quite charming.

Hawaii?    Just a place to express your joy.

Cooper Dancing Ocean 300

I think he’s ready for the whole world.

_________________________________________

(There’s a lot of “girl”  still in me,  but  I’m learning a lot from observing the boys!)

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DON’T STAY HOME !!

March 19, 2017

At least don’t always stay home!      (mostly photos today)

I have a tendency to be mildly interested in activities that go on around here — and then decide not to go out to them  after all.    I can get by like that without any trouble at all.

But this weekend I chose to be “different.”     So if you’re at all like me sometimes,   come, take a walk with me today.

______________________

I’ve been seeing these ads all over my house for a while:

HGS 1 ad

I guess I’ve been saving these ads in case I might be interested . . .   This is not my cup of tea, really.    But,  who knows?

I had my typical morning today.  Woke up at — literally woke up and got out of bed at 9:20,  and was in the car and on my way to church at 9:30.    Believe me,  after Mass the only thing I wanted to do was to go home and go right  back to bed!

But I didn’t.   Guess I was too sleepy to say “No,”  because I ended up here:

HGS 2 pavilion

Now, that is one giant building on our university campus.    It was a long walk from my parking place.    And –  I’ve never been there before.

HGS aisles

Inside were probably a few miles of aisles.  You want to check out something like this first —

HGS map

On the other hand,  there was too many small words to read . . . .

So,  I do have a yard to take care of;  back yard,  big pond in the back yard,  front yard, stone stairs going downhill on one side,  and a fenced in dog run and other stuff on the other side,  a rock garden . . .  it’s not just a rectangular yard full of grass;   there are interesting places and one who has skill and imagination can probably see a lot of possibilities in my yard.

So I’m wandering around inside that immense pavilion looking for “possibilities.”

HGS flower array

I wouldn’t know how to create that, but it looks nice.

And I have a raised area, a little hillside,  that would look nice like this:

HGS raised

My stone stairway doesn’t look like this,  but . . .  maybe  . . .

HGS stone setting

I do want a pretty place to walk in one certain  area of my back yard:

HGS walkway

Remember,  this is all  indoors!

HGS flower booth

 

I wish I knew how to make nice arrangements like this —  not in a vase on my table,  but outdoors,  in a little corner of my back yard:

HGS yesllow flowers

There were opportunities for instruction everywhere,  demonstrations of waterless cookware,  shampooing your roof,  soil feeding, whatever you’d want to know:

HGS lecture

I peeked in, but didn’t “participate.”   But this next display caught my interest:

HGS learning stones and fill

have to get a load of topsoil delivered to my yard this year …  and probably some other things.     there are plenty of interesting “substances”  to spread around in your yard.   So many interesting things to do with stone and water:

HGS fountain

I’d love to get a little waterfall or fountain going back there this summer.

Well,  you get the idea . . .   a little bit interesting.    There were other things in parts of that big pavilion too:

HGS quilts

Exquisite quilts of all colors and patterns.   My Mom made very beautiful quilts.  I don’t know how she learned,  she just start making them one day.  And whenever I see a beautiful hand-made quilt,  I miss her very, very much.

Here’s another one:

HGS pink square

The embroidery was exquisite.

There was a flower contest too –  I guess they’re called Flower Shows.  Here is a Blue Ribbon prize  white orchid,  nicknamed the Moth Orchid –

HGS orchids

Somebody worked very hard and long to nurture these thick, beautiful flowers that just seemed to glow with white light from within.

I didn’t come out all excited and clapping and saying “Wow!”

But I think I gained something by going.     Something slightly unexplainable.

 

 

DEJA VU HISTORY – 15th CENTURY –

January 31, 2017

First,  a  little Rant –

“Deja vu all over again” ??   No!  I’m not going to state that culturally -imposed knee-jerk reaction which trivializes the actual (quite rare) phenomena.

“He who is ignorant of history is condemned to repeat it...” ??    No!    We hear that so often that we’re oblivious to its serious meaning.

But humans are always humans and similar events do come up again and we should learn from those who  lived before we do,  because they really lived in this world and gained experience.

It is arrogance, narcissism, and hubris to reject what they have learned;  and it is criminal negligence for government schools to keep a knowledge of history from us and to pass on a version of history that was rewritten by current political ideology.

bar-fancy-line

So.  Now.    I’ll just be matter-of-fact.      Factual.

It was my intention to re-study the 16th century because I know I’ll have to answer many questions about it  during this fateful year of multiple anniversaries, one of which is 1517, the reputed beginning of the “Reformation. ”

(Book recommendation:   “The Unintended Reformation”    by  Brad S. Gregory.)

But I needed to know some background and I got “stuck” in the 15th century –  an amazing and interesting century all over Europe  (anyone familiar with Game of Thrones?),  but unfortunately  a century with familiar circumstances to us in the 21st.

Let’s just do Spain.     After repeated attacks, robberies, knifings,  killings,  banditry,  political assassinations, courtroom disruptions committed by the Moors who were resident in Spain,    it became clear that Spanish citizens, the “indigenous” people of Spain,  were presented with life-and-death danger every day.

The Moors claimed Spain for their worldwide Caliphate and wanted to re-start their war of conquest.   The Moors were the “conquistadores,” so to speak against  the Spanish people.

If this was your home,  you were somewhat safe:

guadamur-castle

But if you had to travel somewhere,  or if your  home was a smaller “suburb” or remote village, or if you were a farmer,   then you faced death or capture and forced slavery and conversion to the Moorish religion.    (We call it Islam today.)

(By the way,  for those of you who have learned the re-written version of history,   the truth is that the Church forbade forced conversions to the Catholic faith.  In writing.   In documents.   All over the world.     And the penalty for those who tried it was excommunication from the Church.  And many were.   The real Church teaches that you don’t force anyone to become Catholic. )

But the Moors did force Christians to convert, according to what is written in their book.

So here is the likeness between that time and ours:     As more and more protective laws were developed in 15th century Spain,   restricting the movement of the Moors,  more and more Moors pretended conversion to the Catholic faith.    It’s in their  book that you can do that if it advances the cause.

images-rejected

I doubt if many 15th century Moors ever understood the images in this painting.   I’m sure many   Moors were repulsed by it,  including some converts.

Many more Christians were killed because of these new “Christians”  being given the same  advantages as the Christian Spanish citizens.

So now in today’s news, I read:   Because the Previous President issued some orders to detain certain people from certain countries and because the Current President has decided enforce those orders,   the entertainment-news media  (in America and in Europe)  are announcing that President Trump is “banning Muslims from entering the United States.”

A falsehood, of course,  but believed by people in those certain countries.    And so, according to some news today,  many Muslims are converting to the Christian faith in order to enter the United States.

Is there anyone in the world who will doubt the sincerity of all these conversions?     All of them?     All?      

Of course not.

Is there anyone who doesn’t know that this was a successful strategy used in the past by other “converts”  and dangerous to the citizens of the target nation?

. . . .

safe-home

My loved ones and I don’t live in a safe home, like this.

And we’re not protected by soldiers looking out for us, like this:

safe-soldiers

But those who have declared themselves to be enemies of the United States are coming . . .

invading-not-migrating

. . .    by the hundreds of thousands.

And some of these have declared their intentions.

islam-willl-dominate-cr

“. . .the WORLD.”

“Freedom can go to hell” ??        Freedom is a Western value.

Deja vu?   Once upon a time there was a mindset to protect Western values:

fight

The Catholic Church has said that every nation has a right to protect itself, its citizens,  its borders and culture.    Every nation has a right to exist.

I hope indeed that this part of history repeats itself.

 

THE CREEPING MOVEMENT: A PUSH-BACK

September 20, 2016

(I don’t mean “a creepy movement,”   just that it’s creeping right along, as a relentless, unseen mold might do.)

I made reference in the last post about how the “movement”  of islamic dominance is spreading all over the West.   It’s a movement, a stealth movement, that keeps creeping into the cracks and crevices of the sleeping Western world.     Stealth –  not because they’re being stealthy,  but because the West is being deliberately obtuse.

More “umbrella people” —

shariah-uk

  •   O Britain:   land of Queen Boudica;   land of Camelot and King Arthur;   land of St Bede and Landisfarne;    Queen Elthedraeda;   land of the Angles and the Saxons and the Danes and Jutes and Normans;   King Edward;  William the Conqueror;  St.  Thomas a Becket;  St. Thomas More;   the sturdy peasants of the Northern Uprising;    land of Westminster Abbey;  land of the British Museum and the Royal Societies;  Sir William Drake, et al.;   Christopher Wren;   Admiral Nelson;   Jane Austin;    Dickens;    . . . .

. . . . the land of “We shall!”  –

. . . . Winston Churchill. . . .   “We shall not flag or fail.”

We shall go on to the end, we shall fight in France,
we shall fight on the seas and oceans,
we shall fight with growing confidence and growing strength in the air, we shall defend our Island, whatever the cost may be,
we shall fight on the beaches,
we shall fight on the landing grounds,
we shall fight in the fields and in the streets,
we shall fight in the hills;
we shall never surrender, and even if, which I do not for a moment believe, this Island or a large part of it were subjugated and starving, then our Empire beyond the seas, armed and guarded by the British Fleet, would carry on the struggle, until, in God’s good time, the New World, with all its power and might, steps forth to the rescue and the liberation of the old.”

Today,  the “umbrella people”  in England –

shariah-will

“Never forget.”     “Never forget.”     “Never forget.”

Never forget who you are.

It’s not just England.    German television ads are running right now,  “suggesting”  to young German women that they might be safer if they wear burkas, or head scarves.  And a pretty young German model shows you how attractive they can be.

Because . .  .  the Germans know they have a “creeping”  problem:

is-a-shariah-police

The northern European countries have also suggested the purchasing of running shoes,  sneakers,  trainers,  so that the young ladies might be able to outrun their attackers.

Swedish young lady victims were given some advice recently too:

sweden-warning-poster

So get a male relative to escort you out of your homes.  Or just stay home!

The Canadians have a different solution.   Just make them part of your police department.

rcmp-in-burkas-really

Royal Canadian Mounted Police.

America is not resisting this growing, creeping influence.     Recently,  at the Democrat National Convention we were lectured by a Shariah advocate that we’d better act nice and behave:

subject-to-shariah

 

I hope Americans still know who this man is.   Mr. Khan was described by our Democrat-Progressive-Socialists (who want to win the election)   as a “Gold Star Father.”  He did indeed lose a son in the fighting in the Middle East, a place where  many young islamic Americans have received their training in radical islamic jihad techniques.    

What the entertainment-news media hid from the public is that this man was practicing  taqiyya –  deliberate and permitted lying to trick the enemy into non-resistance.   His main occupation is promoting Sharia in the United States,  Sharia to dominate the U.S.  Constitution. 

Yes, his son died.     But he, himself,  the man himself,  is not his son.     His son died fighting in the American Army – the father is fighting against America –  and we were supposed to shut up and honor him.   His anti-American writings and speeches mute our sympathies.

There is another “creeping” movement,  growing at least in Europe.   The people are rising up and resisting the policies of their rulers who are using radical islamists as a tool to maintain social and civil disruption,  for which they, the Rulers, have a ‘solution.”

socialist-besser

 

Germany.  It is there that Nazism  (National-Socialism) and  Global-Socialism  is being rejected, little by little.   Angela Merkel is    gone  defeated in an election. 

I saw a short news video from Turkey today which showed Turkish people rising up against the invading radical islamists, a viglante group “running them out of town,” so to speak.

A grass roots uprising.         Their own Dodge City.

If it can be done, over there,  maybe . . .  here.

salute

 

. *    Please let love for your own country move you today.  Perhaps we can learn from this example of English love for England:

This royal throne of kings, this sceptred isle,
This earth of majesty, this seat of Mars,
This other Eden, demi-paradise,
This fortress built by Nature for herself
Against infection and the hand of war,
This happy breed of men, this little world,
This precious stone set in the silver sea,
Which serves it in the office of a wall
Or as a moat defensive to a house,
Against the envy of less happier lands,–
This blessed plot, this earth, this realm, this England.
William Shakespeare, “King Richard II”, Act 2 scene 1
Greatest English dramatist & poet (1564 – 1616)  

Every nation can look back with pride to some equally inspiring literature.    Do not expect government schools to find it for you.

 

 

“BY THE SHORES . . .”

July 16, 2016

  Just for my own record,  I made it.

 

3 Shores whited 350

“By the shores of Gitche Gumme . . .”

3 shores of gg 400

By the Shining Big-Sea-Waters –

3 ShiningWaters

It  might look like all “water” to you,  but I spent the day flitting from this spot along the Lake to that spot,  like a butterfly,  sipping in sweet experiences; all varied, all blues,  all waters.

The shores were different from place to place –

3 red shores 400

I climbed down to these red  shelf-rocks,  and then I walked way out onto a breakwater to get more views –

3 out into waters 400

The forest back there covers a partial island,  a “presque isle” in French,  and it holds the grave of  an Indian chief who lives there.    I’m  in   Hiawatha’s native land.

Doesn’t that passageway just seem to beckon a canoe to travel forward into it?

3 canoe there 400

Forth upon the Gitch Gumme
On the shining Big-Sea-Water
With his fishing-line of cedar
Of the twisted bark of cedar
Forth to catch the mighty sturgeon
Mishe-Nahma, King of fishes
In his birch canoe exulting
All alone went Hiawatha.

‘Though Hiawatha can exult as his canoe speeds along,  he must be skillfully aware of hidden dangers.   The lake holds many  hidden boulders, sandbars,  floating  tangled logs,  shipwrecks, shoals,  islands,  and snaggy inlets.

Here’s one very noisy seagull island.   At times it is covered in white (seagulls)  as though there were snow on it  –

3 sea gull island 380

He looks like he has many tales to tell –

3 Ready to Tell380

And, as I said a few posts ago,  I’m here to tell myself my own tales.  Tales of my own life.  Tales that will make sense of my own life.

This is the Lake that I first saw when I was a newborn baby.    I come back to sit by its shores.

Ah, my son, exclaimed the Old Man
Happy are my eyes to see you!
Sit here on the mat beside me
Sit here by the dying embers
Let us pass the night together
Tell me of your strange adventures
Of the lands where you have traveled;
Then I’ll tell you of my prowess
Of my many deeds of wonder . . .

 

 

WHAT DO YOU KNOW & HOW DO YOU KNOW IT?

July 9, 2016

Where is it that we get our information from?

Today's News

Who is it that points the telescope for us,  telling us what to look at,  what we should know?

(. . . . .)

I’m glad I didn’t post here all that I wrote this morning (and yesterday).    I had just spent many hours watching the developing story of the sniper-assassin in Dallas who shot into policemen who were protecting Black Lives Matter people –   five, now, having been killed –  and I was full of too many thoughts.

But just one (thought) answers the question that one official asked the television cameras last night.  He asked,“Why are we becoming such a divided nation?”   

Why indeed.

The shooter gives us the answer:     He spoke words of “cops”  killing Black men;   of “cops” being racist;    of being victimized by Whites and he doesn’t want to “take it anymore;   of it being time to kill whites,  “cops”  specifically.     The words attributed to him towards the end are the very same words and phrases that I’ve been hearing all year on the TV entertainment-news media, and recently,  much more frequently.

The media constantly interviews and reports and showcases those radical Black-racist views that give expression  to violent racism against White people.     Of course their words arouse the audience and makes them emotionally willing to come back to that “news” outlet for more.    

SpiderBots  ( For the spider-bots:   Personally, a disclaimer here,  I reject the use of violence against anyone as a means to solve problems.  I’m merely observing.)

 

“An unexamined life is not worth living.” *

Where do you get your viewpoints from?     Usually we get our viewpoints and attitudes from what we hear,**  from what the people around us  are saying  (choose your friends wisely) ***,  or from the words we hear broadcast out to us on the entertainment-news media  (television, radio,  movies, and music).

What we have heard up to this shooting in Dallas is an incitement to violence.   Although outwardly we reject violence,  inwardly, subconsciously,  it’s difficult to resist the attitude that we hear all around us.

We call this  Incitement.   An incitement to violence.   Even if we hear about it in the context of  “tsk, tsk,    we shouldn’t act like that,”     we still hear it – and what we choose to hear is often what we begin to identify with.

TWO ‘DO-YOU-KNOWs”  —

(1)   Do you know who this is?

HS 1

Crazy eyes, nicht war?   Maybe this will help:

HS 3

Yes, that’s Charles Manson.  a thrown-away, abused little boy who slept in the gutters at age 9;   and who grew up with hatred, revenge,  and violent ideas in his heart.    He preached something called Helter-Skelter,  made popular by the occult-driven music group called the Beetles.

Helter-Skelter meant a society that is completely broken down and is in the throes of a violent civil war,  races against races,  poor against rich,  region against region, etc.      It wasn’t happening fast enough for Charles Manson, so he and his little band of drugged-up outlaws went on a murderous rampage one day (two days)  in order to jump-start Helter-Skelter.

This is a curious, almost “quaint” bit of history from America’s Hippy Days,   when the  Sixty-Eighters rose to prominence in the entertainment-news media.

But these Sixty-Eighters, with civil war and revolutionary ideas in their thoughts, were not limited to weird Charles Manson cults.    Their grandchildren think it’s funny to wear Charlie Manson hero t-shirts.

HS 4.jpg

 

But today the   civil war promoters  more often wear suits,  expensive suits.

(2 )   Do you know who this is?

HS 5 saul

We Americans had better know who this is.   He is Saul Alinski, who along with radicals like Professor Cloward and Professor Pivens  taught today’s radicals everything they need to know in order to be triumphant in transforming America, slowly, progressively, into their own image.

Alinski’s book is a blueprint, faithfully and successfully followed by the Progressive-Leftists in our own nation.

These people named above  were the mentors of such men as:

hs 6 bh

. . .  this one,  the triumphant one who was given the new name of “Barack Hussein”  in order to appeal to radicalized Black groups, such as Jeremiah Wright,  a “reverend” in Chicago who helped Barry Sotoero to feel comfortable “acting like a Christian” while publicly  denying his Muslim roots.

(Fact check, if you’re unaware:  the only school records we have of this man show him as a Malaysian  citizen and of the Muslim religion.  Whatever.   Whatever:   he didn’t have the same upbringing as American citizens.   Please don’t include the booze-filled, drug-filled, sex-filled high school years in Hawaii.   Must we continue to deny the truth? ) ****

These men were also mentors and teachers who taught such women as this:

HC Heads Up

. . . .women, “Progressives,”    too can be used to rule over a transformed America –  after the civil war.   From this woman’s lips, after the Dallas shooting of targeted  white policemen came the sentiment that White people need to learn and to change.  *****

“Them thar’s fightin’ words,” as Americans used to say.

Them thar words indicate that Helter-Skelter has not left the minds of these ageing Sixty-Eighters and their unsuspecting young followers.      (Also called, by Vladmir  Lenin,  “the useful idiots.”)

American citizens don’t want change-by-revolution or by civil war.    We want to live by our Constitution which directs us to laws that apply equally to all citizens, and a society in which difficulties, flaws, and weaknesses in our system are worked out peacefully by Americans without a hidden agenda.

Eventually,  all citizens are equal under the law.       (If you look at recent committee hearings,  FBI proceedings, and such exercises such as those,  you will see how far we’ve strayed from “equal” before the law.)

We must be very discerning about what we are hearing from the various media sources.  Is it true?     Is it reasonable?     Is it of any lasting value?   Is it helpful?       What do we know and how do we come by that  knowledge?

bar dissolve er

About the “cops”  killing people issue,  study after study show that twice as many White men are shot to death by policemen as Black men.      For my foreign readers,  yes,  “bad cops” are prosecuted – and jailed.  We don’t need a civil uprising of one segment of society to “transform” our nation into some extreme-leftist attempt at a Utopia.

(Which, to save more ‘stars’ —  Utopia means:  No Place.   Intelligent people know that a Utopia doesn’t exist. )

bar dissolve er

 

. *       Attributed to Socrates, whose thoughts are one point in the development of our Civilization, and who is, thus,  relevant for today’s world.

. **      I say hear but not “see and hear”  because generally what we see is interpreted by us and by others with words.    Hearing is a very deep, intimate way that we learn.

. ***     “Birds of a feather flock together.”     

. ****    See:  “The Emperor’s New Clothes”,    an old children’s story teaching moral courage

*****   If you care enough:     In interviews reported by mainstream media as well as Internet reporting sites,  she is quoted and video’d as saying:

“Look, I don’t believe you change hearts,” Clinton shot back. “I believe you change laws, you change allocation of resources, you change the way systems operate. You’re not going to change every heart. You’re not.”  

To a Progressive/socialist/revolutionary/etc.   individual people are simply cyphers,  economic units to be utilized and managed.   That’s you, my dear readers.    Just an economic unit to be factored into political action.  You don’t have a brain;  you don’t have a heart to care about “things that really matter.”

At least, not enough of you that matters in order to Transform America.

 

“ALL’S RIGHT WITH THE WORLD” – HUH?

June 1, 2016

(some backyard philosophy today,  from ducks to caesars.)

I wrote in the last post about an amazing new fact I learned recently:  that a bumble bee’s mouth is filled with little hairs!   Yuck.    But they serve as receptors for important little electrical signals put out by … flower petals!

Honestly!    All of  creation fits together in the most remarkable ways, one part made for the other.    Creation  works:

DUCKS to crop

It’s spring, and the ducks have returned to my backyard pond.   When they are resting like this they signal peace.  Peace in my backyard.   Peace.    Sometimes I’m consciously grateful for the time to watch them for a while.    They are there because “All’s right with the world,”  however temporarily for them.

Another sign of nature working well:

Bird closeup

Well, it works well for her, at least.   She’s made her nest – and laid her eggs now –  in the porch light just outside my front door.   That means, once again, that I can’t use my front door for a while;  and it means I have to duct-tape over the light switch or else the light bulb turned on  will set fire to the nest (as it almost did last year).

But for her – and we’re beginning to think this is Mama Robin – she has found a peaceful place to make a home and nurture her chicks.      “All’s right with (her) world.”

We can multiply this millions of times in the natural world.

However, when it comes to humans, who are part of the natural world,  well, we sometimes get in  the way of our own well-being.    Observe this excerpt from a famous poem . . .

The year’s at the spring,
And day’s at the morn;
Morning’s at seven;
The hill-side’s dew-pearled;
The lark’s on the wing;
The snail’s on the thorn;
God’s in his Heaven –
All’s right with the world!

( by Robert Browning.)*   It’s a portion of a poem that presents the terrible life a young girl who has been oppressed and ground down by her society.    Society  (politics and culture and social conventions)  had gotten so far from the natural order of Creation that a young girl is cruelly victimized unto death.    That society was in the midst of its collapse.

collapsing building

Yet  look at the context in which this societal collapse took place!

“The year’s at the Spring” – as usual –  “the day’s at the morn” –  as expected –    “the lark’s on the wing” – as normal  –  All of nature works, just as the Creator  created it.     And what does Nature care of the risings and fallings of societies and civilizations — which have learned to ignore natural, commonsense ways of Truth and Reality? 

We build ourselves up:

collapsing cards cr

Oh, yeah –  you just know what’s going to happen next!     One unstable house of cards;  one push;  one gust of wind;   one accident;  one deliberate undermining of the foundational layer.

Poof!    The house of cards that man has built lies in a heap – to be discovered, perhaps,  by archeologists thousands of years in the future.

There are certain truths about who and what Man is that cannot be contradicted for very long.    Natural laws  determine human growth beginning from a few cells to mature old age;  one of two sexes;  fresh and clean air, water, and food for optimum health;  and certain ways to associate with each other, summarized efficiently in the Ten Commandments, for instance.

Here is one Truth about Man:     “. . .  man was formed for society . .  .”  a partial quote ** from Sir William Blackstone, who wrote his famous volumes of commentary on the Law, as England knew it in the 18th century.

Man was formed for society. . . .     As such,  it is of utmost importance that  Man in his society   reflects the reality of Man in Natural Truth.     It’s common sense.   But if our society, or our culture,  departs from Natural Law,   then it begins to erode and to corrupt.

“All’s right with the world . . . “       Evidence seems to be that all is NOT right with our society.    Our foundations have been corrupted.  Our foundational layer has been undermined.   Poof!

But when I write about this in the weeks to come,   I’m writing within the context of  the existence of Natural Law at work in the Natural World.   That Natural Law applies not only to Ducks and Robins   (!)   but also surely to us human beings.

The  R word is very much on my mind these days,  but I don’t know if it should be  Recovery,  Restoration,  or Rebuilding.

This man had an idea:

augustus

Augustus Caesar  sought to restore the Roman Republic to its higher moral foundations.  He succeeded, somewhat,  and built the Roman Empire, which lasted a few centuries more;  not because its succeeding leaders were good and moral men,  but because the momentum of a restored higher  moral foundation made a few more centuries possible.

Good laws.   Good men.   Good moral foundation.

augustus senate

The new society worked —   “All was well” with society, as in the natural world.

For a while, at least.     

But it can be done.

_________________________________________________

 

. * Pippa’s Passing    (Well-educated children used to have this portion of the poem memorized,  but I fear that they were not taught the irony it presents.   Modern society continued to collapse.)

. **  “But man was formed for society; and as is demonstrated by writers on the subject, is neither capable of living alone, nor indeed has the courage to  do it.”   (speaking, of course, of normal, healthy individuals)

A 12-YEAR-OLD GIRL DIES (III) GOOD NEWS

May 25, 2016

(Who says “history”  isn’t interesting!!)

Well,  good news for you  in this third posting about the recent burning death of the little girl.   But the bad news is that the “good news”  happened a few centuries ago.

Everywhere the desert crescent-moon god  conquers, it’s accompanied by things like murder, burning, beheading,  crucifixions,  rapes, and slavery — as a policy of conquest.   You can read about new incidents every day.     They’re happening.

A thousand years ago, people of  three major  religions lived together in a peaceful arrangement in Jerusalem.   In Jerusalem!    They each had their section of the city and it worked.   Goods and information were traded back and forth.

A group of Christian men and women dedicated to taking care of the sick and wounded in the Holy Land built up hospitals in Jerusalem for residents and pilgrims.

kN HOSPITAL

They built hospices and hospitals all over.     Beautiful, clean,  open airy hospitals.   They came to be called The Hospitalers.   Otherwise known as the Knights of St. John.     They were dedicated to God and to the help of His poor and sick.   For two hundred years they did their work.

kn crusade map

This ended as  a militant variety of one of those three religions came and conquered the territory,  killing everyone off, taking over control of the city.   Although Christian Europe rose up in defense and created a safe “kingdom” in the area,  it was not organized or strong  or really very safe.

However, now once again pilgrimages were possible,  but not always safe, for the radical, militant conquerors threatened travelers.

 

And that didn’t last long, because another wave of militant conquering effort eradicated all Christian influence –  from their own Christian historic places.   No more pilgrimages!

(The equivalent outrage would be like IF Europe were to suddenly prevent all Muslims from visiting Mecca.    Terrible!  They have a right to visit their historic religious sites.    But so do Christians have a right to visit the land where Christ walked.)

The Knights of St John, the Hospitalers,   heard of the same things that we hear of today:  rapes and murders,  burnings and beheadings,  crucifixions,   enslavement,  forced conversions to the desert crescent moon god.

But they rose up and added to their work a second duty: the defense of Christian lands.

kn READY

First in Rhodes, then in Malta,  they kept guard.

kn only a few hundred

There were only a few hundred knights to guard Europe from this island outpost!   And less than two thousand other soldiers to help them in battle.

And one day . . .

kn came up that bay

 

. . .  one day  one hundred thousand militant islamic  soldiers sailed into this bay,  far outnumbering the Knights of St. John on the island of Malta.

100,000 men versus  about 2,000 Christian men.       One of history’s most dramatic, thrilling stories.

kn great enemy

This is Dragut,  the leader of the 100,000 —  legendary for cruelty, ruthlessness — and effectiveness.   I will not mention the name of the overall leader of this militant culture.  He is not “magnificent,”   unless you are trying to flatter him.

Now, you can find out how this story ended in books or on YouTube.  “The Siege of Malta.”   Or look up “The Knights of St. John.”      The weaponry alone is an  amazing story.

But  the whole era is good news –  good news because men rose up to defeat the advance of such a culture that was cruel and murderous at that time.   They heard of barbaric cruelty against innocent civilians — and they rose to act.

They knew about  babies born to Christian families were STOLEN from their parents;  then raised under severe spartan conditions; forcibly made to submit to that desert crescent moon god;    then trained to be the most violent and suicidal soldiers against the Christians. These are the  ghostly, ghastly  Janissaries you’ve read about in history books.

kn janissaries

The Christian men,  these knights,  understood that wave after wave of military advances needed to be stopped,  or all of Europe would descend into barbarism.

Here is a map of the advance of radical militant islam,  but the purple should be green:

MKn  Map Purple

They are aiming to fill in the rest of Europe with purple now.  They’re doing it first by the movement of vast numbers of their young men into European countries.   They’re doing it by using European laws – for a while.   They’re doing it by using the tools of socialism which promotes self-loathing among Europeans and Americans.     And they’re doing it,  they’re conquering,  by out-procreating the native Europeans.     They know it and they’ve spoken boldly about what they’re doing.  They mock and ridicule and insult their European “hosts.”

But they will also conquer by their former means when it is possible.

So this  “good news”  is that, once,  Christian men rose up to oppose a group dedicated to such cruelty.      Christendom reformed itself and rejected “cruel and unusual”  punishments.    The Church never allowed forced conversions — and condemned and excommunicated those who did, wherever possible.    (Do not expect “Christian kings”  or kings over christian nations to be restrained by the Church.   Some kings,  some governments,  were evil.   Don’t get distracted.)     

Good Christian men rose up,  once,  and halted the advance of the cruelest followers of the desert warrior crescent moon god.

We have work to do.    In my own country we can read of honor killings;    of acid being thrown in the faces of “disobedient”  wives;   of the commonly practiced  mutilation of female genitals;     of shootings and stabbings accompanied by the desert warrior cry stating their “god is greater.”

We have work to do.

We have learning to do.

Like,  “what do we really believe in?”

Anything worthwhile?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A BIRTHDAY & A SAINT ALMOST MURDERED

May 22, 2016

The birthday celebration table:

BDay  Tab;e sr

Steaks.  Salads.   Presents.  Card.   Cake.   (  . . . and a big arm waiting.)      It’s fun putting on a birthday spread, especially for someone very important!

It was Son’s birthday this weekend.    (Oh, yes – the whole weekend;  three-day weekend, as a matter of fact.   Since his profession requires him to work some weekends, and since  so many people wanted a piece of him on his birthday the celebrations will take  three days. )

Which brings me to my point:  so many hours worked!   So many people to see!    Oh,  Son is not complaining,   but I do observe  people who have busy-busy lives.  I once had an impossibly busy life too.

Has time speeded up or are we trying to cram more into our days?

Or are we trying to avoid facing the deeper issues of Life by activity?

Or all of the above?

But this question is nothing new . . .

Complicated

Human life has long been busy and complicated with great challenges and no easy answers.     Many times everyday life prevents us from sorting out Good and Bad;  Right and Wrong;    Duty;   Virtue;  our relationship to God and each other.    We are distracted, willingly or not willingly,  from the serious issues of Life.

Son is an intelligent person, and sometimes he perceives this dilemma too.

Appropriately,   the saint we remember on the day of Son’s birthday is a man named St.  Hospitius.   (“hoss – pish – us”)      He left the high (and complex, busy) culture of Egypt, sometime after the fall of the Roman Empire, in order to find a quiet  place to understand the meaning of life and to work out his relationship with God.

He traveled to the less populated regions of Gaul,  what we’d call France,  today.    He needed time to think and to figure things out.   He chose to live in the ruins of an old tower where he hoped to see not very many people.      Peace and quiet and freedom.

st h and tower ruins

He had quiet time alone, away from people;  time to think, to learn, and to pray.      He knew this much:  that he was certainly a sinner before God, and he wished to atone for his sins,  to do penance,  and to develop a deep friendship with  his Savior.

And as often happens:  we seek,  heaven rewards.     St.  Hospitius was eventually rewarded with wisdom and understanding,  and the power to prophesy and to work miracles.  Once he warned the villagers around him that they had better flee,  because the fierce tribe of Lombards were on their way to attack, pillage, and destroy.

They left,  but he didn’t.   A small group of barbarian Lombard soldiers found him and saw the chains that he usually wore around his waist, to remind him of what a great sinner he was.   The soldiers thought he was some kind of criminal.

He agreed with them!     Yes!  In the eyes of God I am a criminal.    A great sinner.”   So since he was a self-admitted “bad guy” and an obvious outcast,  they were free to kill him.

Stospitius in chains

A soldier raised his sword to strike,   but the soldier’s arm became paralyzed.   St.  Hospitius made the sign of the cross over him —  the soldier’s arm became “un-paralyzed”   — and the soldier realized this is a holy man of God, and soon converted to Christianity, along with his (military)  friends.

His life is over now.   He died in 581 A.D.      But the relentless demands of busy, everyday life is still with us, as well as the serious need to sort out  Life and Death issues and make our peace with our Creator before we die.

St.  Hospitius is in Eternity right now.    Our Eternity is still before us.  It’s coming.

 

WORD: Trumped

March 13, 2016

(Again,  as I’ve written before,  I endorse no candidate and promote no specific political party.  I don’t get too much of my news from American news media which is leftist or extreme leftist.  I prefer not to be propagandized.) 

But I do observe:

Trumped —  the process by which a man is attacked by  Illogical accusations,  savage name-calling, exaggerated  scorn, misplaced blame, and deceptive slogans,  simply because the man does not agree with your political opinions.

Opinions,  viewpoints – that’s all they are;  but some think that only theirs should be heard,  and the right to freely speak should be suppressed.

“To freely speak” —  Ironic,  because most of the savage attacks are bought and paid for, promoted with professional signs and t-shirts and ready-made slogans — about which the attackers are told to say  “I do not wish to give my reason.”   Just make sure to suppress or interfere with the right of others to freely speak.

Oh,  yes, and blame the person whom you are attacking.  Say:  “He caused it.”

The resulting confusion will be sure to stop the discussion of the actual issues,  a desired by-product of Trumping.

.

Interesting that the people who are doing it,  young ones and not-so young,  don’t seem to realize that this tactic is an old, old, old one;  and has been used wherever democracy has been overturned.  You know,  “if you don’t know history, you are condemned to repeat it.”

UNREASONABLE – TO NOT WANT REVENGE

February 17, 2016

If I go back to bed I’m going to know how much I hurt all over…   it’s not just “laryngitis”  — it’s whatever comes with a 101 temperature – and it’s not coming down yet, and so I just want to go away from my bed where I feel so terrible.

Might do a little feverish rambling tonight.    But this posting has been waiting,  and I’m going to mean what I say.

Have you seen the movie yet?      The“Revenant”?   I highly, personally recommend it.  (As long as you have a strong stomach —except, you’d better,  because the themes in this movie are as real as real life and we all must deal with them,  eventually.)

You know the movie has a grizzly bear in it:

Grizzly Drawing

I saved this picture because it’s a drawing, and I want to draw.   Draw a bear.

But those of you who know me,  know my history with  bear attacks, and you know why I consider bears to be  a metaphor for those things which stalk us, and then all of a sudden rush out and attack.      (Like a few million viruses in me right now.   Trillion?)

bear talking to you

You can’t always see the bear,  but by the time you do,  they’ve decided that you’re prey.   You’re the victim.

No way to fight:

Bear Trees a Man

Just endure,  for the duration.     Whatever the “bear”  are in your life.

Now, you know the story behind the Revenant movie is a true story.   There really was a Hugh Glass,  he really was a trapper;  he really did get attacked by a grizzly,  and two of his friends were really ordered to stay behind with him until he died (real soon), in order to give him a burial.

cowboy  Glass was featured in a recent issue of my Cowboy magazine:

Since the two companions were hungry and cold and being pursued by a small group of Indians who were intent upon revenge,   they really did leave Hugh Glass out there in the wilderness,  more than half dead.   And they buried him, slightly,  and moved on.

A lot of the movie is spent on Mr. Glass kind of getting himself out of his grave,  and then with determination and grit,  motivated by revenge and hatred for the men who left him behind,  he crawled and then limped his way to Fort Kiowa,  where he’d find out where those men are – and go after them.

If that’s all you see in the movie,  then it’s a pretty good,  sort of an okay adventure movie  with beautiful scenes of the wintry rugged West.  (Mostly Montana and South Dakota.)  I’ve driven through there.  It’s all true.   The scenery is beyond description.

(Not South Dakota,  but the scale is right.) —

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But along the way there are some pretty powerful Christian themes.

For those of you who know the Bible,  doesn’t St. Paul say that this life is a very hard journey,   and you have to undergo many hardships and much pain and loneliness,  and you’ll have many enemies in this world, who’ll wish to do you harm.   We suffer in our Christian life as Christ Himself suffered,  humiliated, abandoned, and bruised.     (Is the servant better than the Master?)    If we don’t have it so bad,  we just shake our heads at how really tough and desperate some people do have it.

Hugh Glass just keeps living.  He just keeps going.  A lesser man would have laid aside his goal . .  . .

But beyond that just general and vague sort of metaphor,   there is the accompanying theme in this movie of revenge – and the choice between revenge and forgiveness.  That conflict actually drives the images and the action in the movie.

Hugh Glass was married to an Indian woman.   One of the more peaceful tribes.

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Their enemies were the French trappers and soldiers,  the English (Americans),  and most of all, the other Indian tribes who bore down on them in frequent massacres.   The more violent tribes were in the process of driving out the gentler tribes during this time.

And so his wife was killed.   But she didn’t “leave” him.   She was a gentle soul, loving and  protective of him, and– she was taught by the Catholic missionaries.   She often “hovered” over him during his trek back to Fort Kiowa,  whispering to him both encouragements and restraints on the hatred in his heart.

Unreasonable!   Unreasonable to not want revenge!  After all,  that was the only thing that kept him alive.

And then she came to him once in a vision;  and this time she brought the unconditional love of God, the deep love upon which their (sacramental Catholic) marriage was based.     His vision took place in the ruins of a Catholic chapel – right out there in the midst of the wilderness.

 

desmet ruins

When his wife led him further into the ruins,  (they looked worse than this in the movie), he had eyes only for her,  but behind him you could see the ruins of beautiful and instructive paintings at the front of the church –

Michelangelo frescoes in the Sistine Chapel, Rome

You could see the crucifix,  in dark, faded paints,  Jesus,  angels,  Mary nearby, and many other images that help us remember and meditate on our teachings.   I knew instantly that this was a ruined mission chapel left behind by Father DeSmet.

(It’s worth taking the time to learn about this episode in American history:   Some of the Plains Indians had received powerful visions from the Great Father Above.    He told them that He would send men who came from far away to teach them the “whole truth” about Him.  The “rest of the story,”  as we say.    The Great Father Above showed them what the men would look like:  they would be dressed in black,  black robes,  and they would wear crucifixes on their chests.  The Plains Indians kept this in their memories and in their drawings.     Many generations later,  some English  (American) missionaries came to them,   ready to teach them,  but the Plains Indians rejected them.   They had a “book”  but they didn’t have a crucifix.   A little later,  Father DeSmet and his companions, from Belgium,  came to the Plains Indians.  Father DeSmet was instantly recognized and received,  and many Plains Indians became Catholic.   — And this was before the routine slaughter of the Indians by the  . . .  Americans.   They took out many Catholic missionaries too. )

So there, in the movie,  was the evidence of Father DeSmets’ visit and of the beautiful wilderness chapels that were built,  and evidence of the gentle, Catholic teaching of forgiveness, coming through the vision of his wife’s “visit.”

While I watched the movie I saw this loving, too-gentle teaching of his wife who was accompanying him on his terrible journey,  and I also saw the determination for all-too-human revenge inside of Hugh Glass.

As the movie ended,  he had his opportunity, and no one would have faulted him for what he was about to do.

A parallel story of revenge among the savages was playing out too, at the same time.   The movie brilliantly brought together these two parallel stories.

“Do  not   take   revenge.    Put   it   in   the       hands   of    God.      Justice    belongs    to   Him,    not     to   mankind.”    

Father DeSmet brought Catholic teaching to the Plains Indians.    Glass’s wife lived out those Catholic teachings for her husband.     And the savages were the Hand of God.

The word “revenant’ refers to someone who has returned from death, or just as good as death.     He has revived.   Been resurrected.      But see:  what did he “revive”  from?   The physical death he should have experienced,  but for his hate-filled determination?

Or did he revive from the spiritual death that had made him hate-filled and full of vengeance in the first place.

Sure would love to “teach” more about this movie —  but I think you can do your own thinking.

I’m all in . . . .

Bed is looking a little better . .  . .

 

 

 

3. IOWA CAUCUS -THE EXTERNAL ATTACK

February 1, 2016

(Closing out with a little pessimism):

As I write,  the caucus is  soon coming to an end –  and I’m so very weary.      The winner here may or may not be the winner in November.   The winner in November may or may not be able to help us recover our distinctly American culture, and there is no guarantee that the winning leader will be able to hang on to the values that made Western civilization safe and stable.

The good news and the bad news is this:  that a nation gets the leaders it deserves.  It seems to be true that Complacency is the biggest crime against one’s own society and culture, the components of  civilization.  But so is ignorance and greed.

A civilization doesn’t exist because it has some invisible “right” to  exist;  it exists because it’s being upheld by each generation;  it’s being transmitted to the next generation;  and its ideals are being honored by the civil piety of its people with  cultural expressions such as manners and mores,  literature,  songs,  and public spectacles,  and entertainment.

Each one individual person is responsible for that!

A civilization is upheld by the determination and hard work of the individuals within it.   “Hard work” and “determination”  because there are  many enemies who work from the inside – but don’t forget there are many who are working from the outside.

From history,  “nations come and nations go;  republics come and republics go;  kingdoms come and kingdoms go.”    When inside enemies collude with outside enemies,  the nation or republic or kingdom is probably on its way out.

There are outside enemies, the traditional ones that we are familiar with and an old one that had been quiescent for so long.    But we were warned.   We would have had time to overcome our growing complacency and our weakened sense of self-preservation.

In the 1930s it was predicted that there will be the next surge of  “radical is”  la “mist” expansion by the end of the 20th century.   To the surprise of many who lived at that time,  it was written that Western Civilization would have more to fear from  this —

Resurgence 200

—  than from the rise of National Socialism which  Hitler was presenting to that decade.

We are witnessing  an external invasion beginning — and they   mean to destroy the remaining portions of Western Civilization — which we still  take for granted will always exist.

If the various enemies of the various nations which made up Western Civilization are left unchecked,  then the last remnants of Western Civilization will be gone.   It’s possible.

But these are Big Ideas –  the underlying march of history that is not quite being addressed by today’s politicians.  It’s going to be up to individual people to learn how things work and to discover what action to take.

But we need do nothing at all to observe our own demise.

Perhaps many of us, as am I,  are weary of the fruitless theater of politics.

2. IOWA CAUCUS — AMIDST THE INTERNAL ATTACK

February 1, 2016

What gives me the right to disparage  our “superannuated young people” as I seemed to do in the last post?

What gives me the right to disparage  our “young people”?    I don’t know:  citizen;  parent;  alert eyewitness; university student;  kind of a historian;  present for the revolution of the Sixties  (though I am NOT a “Sixty-Eighter”).

And — mostly because  I was a  government schoolteacher, and I witnessed the deliberate and behind-the-scenes change in the educational system of our country.   It was an internal attack on two whole generations.

I saw American values, indeed the values of Western Civilization, being hid from them  and obscured  and then eventually demonized.   The knowledge and the values of Western Civilization were methodically destroyed.

And no civilization was rising up to take its place –  unless you call the “pop culture”  of degraded, immoral icons a “civilization”  (which it is not).   Instead there developed a culture of fads and media distraction, political correctness,  self-censorship,  compliance,  slavery and obedience.

Remember that commenter?   “I’m voting for Bernie Sanders  (or any other version of Progressive Liberalism)  because he’s going to GIVE ME everything I need!”   

This is the thinking of Baby Birds.   Hungry.  Needy.   Helpless.  Vulnerable.

Baby BIrds- Give Me 300

There is hope for Baby Birds

I don’t know, maybe.

I think I see a rebellion starting against some of the excesses now.  Some of that younger generation is beginning to join those of us who never gave in to the changes of the global socialist revolution.  Call it “progressive.”  Call it communism.  Call it Gramscianism — (please look that up if you were a victim of public school miseducation!)

I hope there is time for a peaceful push-back.

You don’t have to be any of the above things I mentioned in order to be a critical thinker on today’s society.   You would do better without a university degree in order to analyze the wrongs being done to our nation.

I hope there are enough people to push back against those who cry out like baby birds to have their mouths filled by others.    I know it will take massive effort and caring on our part,  as well as education and action.    There was indeed an internal attack upon the American society.   I hope we don’t need a bloody revolution to reverse this lust-filled hope-and-change transformation of our nation.

We’ll see what the Iowa caucus has to say.

1 – IOWA CAUCUS

February 1, 2016

The Iowa caucus CAN BE an occasion to lift our thoughts above our usual superficial thinking, and above the thoughts that others give to us.   We can ask:  “What in the world is going on in Iowa?” So, in three parts,  I write for you some political thoughts;  that is,  thoughts that concern the Body Politic.

Initially, my first thought on a portion of  the Iowa caucus was this:

1.  SUPERANNUATED CHILDREN  GET TO VOTE

This is not the general population of Iowa!  But they say that the many supporters of Bernie Sanders there and elsewhere are mainly “young people.”    Though mentally and intellectually underage,  they do get to vote.

He is a self-declared “socialist,”  we have heard     These children who support the romantic notion of socialism have  NEVER been made to study or read or even become remotely acquainted with the effects of any political or social revolution, and so they believe the “socialist” revolution that they can produce by their enthusiasm will bring about a “better world.”

“Enthusiasm!  High hopes for change!  Our leaders will transform us into a better society!”     It sounds appealing.   But there is nowhere in the history of this planet that shows evidence for the success of socialism;  but everywhere it has been attempted, you will find its failure, especially in terms of over-extended and failing economies..

The children-voters don’t know.  They are uneducated.   But they are well-informed and  well-trained in the propaganda that brings about  “hope and change” in the context of Big Brother type governments which promise everything to everyone.

As one commenter says:  “I’m lazy.  I’m going to vote for Bernie Sanders because he’s going  to GIVE me everything I need.”

2.  A SOCIAL/POLITICAL REVOLUTION

This is a revolution in American thinking —   a revolution that has been inserting itself into our nation for the past several decades, and which is well under way to undermining our strength and viability in every sector of our society.

To succeed, it must use a generation of “children”  who have been miseducated,   propagandized, intellectually weakened ,  morally corrupted, and made to do all the things which have made humans feel justifiably guilty  for during the past ten thousand years (since at least the end of the last Ice Age).

They must have been made to love pleasure and to disdain hard work and independence — and they must be made fearful of  life and their own capabilities.  And they must not know the fatal  consequences to a nation that is conquered by socialism — after the “hopes and dreams”  become a disastrous reality.

3.  SOCIALISM AND SLAVERY

A pleasure-seeking, corrupted society is one that is easy to lead . . . .   Every socialist knows this.  Destroy the family,  destroy family values, and you have destroyed your strongest enemy.

“I’m going to vote for Bernie Sanders because he’s going to GIVE me everything I need.”

This is called:    slavery.

These super-annuated useful idiots, as Lenin called them (I wouldn’t call them that),  are indeed helping to bring about a kind of global slavery.

Personally,  I choose to observe the evidence of actual history.  I don’t trust people who smile at me and promise me good things — if only I give them more and more of my money for policies that have never yet worked and give up more and more of my privacy and freedom  for a “bright” future that has never yet begun to come about.

What gives me the right to disparage  our “young people”?   To shorten the length of this posting,   I’ll tell you and  I’ll put forward for you  two dangers,   the internal attack on our nation and the external attack –  both of which we can witness as they happen,  but I’ll do it in the next post.

WALK WITH ME

January 23, 2016

 

I don’t know what made me visit The Spruce Tunnel this day.  It had been a nice but challenging class this morning, but I was tired now  and very hungry,  and it was a cold, crisp day in the Far North.   But I found myself making the stop, thinking the  fresh air would feel good.

So unexpectedly I stopped the car and started off  down the familiar entrance pathway to the Tunnel.

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No skis this time, even though it was winter.   And there were plenty of other  footprints to show others had  left their skis at home too.

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I once did a photo-study of all the patterns made by boot footprints in The Spruce Tunnel.  Fascinating.   Sometimes you find interesting things when you look down, when you stop and focus on what’s very close to you.

I was wearing my warm fur-lined “short boots.”    But my friends say they look like bedroom slippers.

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Well, hmmmph!   I bought them from the Boot section of the shoe store.   They’re boots!   They keep my feet warm!

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I took a deep breath, feeling the (cold) oxygen fill my lungs.  It felt good all over.   I thought:  I could have been driving the car right now –  breathing stuffy, heated air.  I could have been home by now:  breathing dry air.   This was nicer.

I looked way up at some of the deciduous trees, bare now in midwinter.   Kept my eyes up there,  just like a kid would do,   until I was done looking.

It was peaceful, but it wasn’t quiet.     There were many interesting sounds:    little peeps, squeaks,  creaks,   lots of bird sounds.   “Someone”  was scolding me  as I walked through.  Maybe my peace was  disturbing his peace;  maybe a bird, maybe an irritated  squirrel.    Sorry, little critter –  I wasn’t intimidated;  you just sounded funny.

But I share this park with other living things.   I know.

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I saw an interesting log.

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Nobody’s home, I guess.

Questions, questions, questions.   What was I doing here?   What made me come?

And then another unexpected, decision:   of all the pathways I could have chosen to enter the Tunnel,  I chose this one, rather than my usual eastern approach.

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I was entering now a deeper stillness,  when the “peaceful feeling”  becomes a little eerie.    A  peaceful feeling becomes a spiritual feeling.   The many duties and concerns that had kept my mind so busy fell completely away, and my mind seemed to become clear and open.  I thanked God for . . .   I don’t know.  I just felt thankful.

Whatever impulse had driven me here was a good one.

And then I discovered “why”  I had come.   An unexpected purpose.   And just
as I was wondering about the wisdom of being here, alone, in a great big park
with no other person in sight,  and with no protection (whatever that would
be),   I heard  two people up ahead.

It was a man and a woman.  They were enjoying the park together.  They seemed happy, although they looked cold.    When I got closer, and smiled to them,  they asked me if I knew how much further they had to go to get to the end of the trail.   “Not far at all.”

If I had entered the Tunnel from the other way,  I wouldn’t have seen them.  So . . .  glad I could help.

8.5 two eaglesBut then our conversation began.   The lady,  the wife as it turned out,  came over to me to show me the beautiful pictures of a pair of eagles that she had recently taken.  And nearby!    The eagles were obviously a happy couple too, impersonating a pair of lovebirds.  How interesting.  I was impressed.  Such an image of majestic strength –  and yet —  life, love, bonding, babies;  just like all life on this earth.    “Abundant life!”   “Be fruitful and multiply.”

The lady went on about  her pursuit of certain birds for further picture taking, an obviously well-liked hobby of hers;  and how often she just seemed to be “led”  to the location of certain interesting or rare birds.

I learned about their motorcycle riding and an accident, one of seven, was it?   And how they were so protected that they each had only bumps and bruises,  even though their motorcycles were trashed.  And how the accident led to the fortuitous discovery of impending blindness.

They both shared many other things, all the while expressing their thanksgiving to God.  It was evident that they lived their Christian faith daily,  at every moment.

I felt a little shy, and I shyly asked them if I could take their picture.

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I wanted to remember them, to remember that this delightful encounter had really  happened.

Then it was time to go.   Just standing there had made us all feel the cold.   We said our good-byes and “God bless you”s.

There was the end of the Tunnel waiting for me, and I took one last look at the tall black spruces:

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And further way up high:

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The Spruce Tunnel is indeed a place of great beauty, deep feeling, and lofty thoughts.     I’m so glad I had made my unplanned stop here.    I felt different – and better – after the chance encounter with that happy couple.  Their bright happy spirits lifted me up and made a happy walk in the park even happier!

I’ll never see them again,  but I’ll always remember their effect on me.  And I hope I’ll try to have the same positive, unselfconscious faith-filled effect on others.

We who are believers  manifest Christ for the world around us.  We are witnesses to His love and to His Resurrection.   We show the world what Jesus is like.

Or so we should.

Leaving the Tunnel,  walking out into the wide world  —

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Finding my way back into the “normal” world —   where I hope I’ll take this experience with me and I hope it will change me, just a little.

 

 

TODAY IS LIFE

December 22, 2015

(A little posting of explanation for my absence) –

Almost finished preparations for Christmas.  Just a few more pieces to go:

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But I had a little setback.    Blindsided by a 5-year anniversary.

We think we  “know ourselves.”   But the “knowing”  is really just  familiarity.  After “many”  decades of life,  you’d think I’d know myself by now.   I thought I knew me:

Descendant of Vikings.  Daughter of a Marine.   Rough and tough tomboy, playing football and “war” with my friends.  Emperor Frederick II of Prussia was my hero during high school;  he’s the reason why I drove myself to manly excellence in academics and physical strength and  . . .  well,  flute.  I can intellectualize my way out of anything.  and I thought I was pretty well self-disciplined . . .  .

But I had an unexpected setback.  Blind-sided.  Emotionally.

The 5-year anniversary?    Is this:

Grandpa and Cooper

I write about Hubbie here.    I write about Cooper.    Five years ago,  one of them was just arriving;  one of them was just leaving.   An unexpected early arrival;  a very unexpected early departure.   (Again,  I chronicled all this in the November 2010 archives here.)

So I’ve pieced my life together;  reinvented my household, as all of us have to do from time to time.   Stayed true to the one who departed and “inserted” into my life the one who arrived.

That’s how December began,  with the residue of “feelings”  I had thought I had managed fairly well but had to wrestle with again.

And then I put some old photos up on the wall —

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Yep.   Me.   And Hubbie.    (A “few” years ago.)   December 21st is our Anniversary.

A lot of years were to follow on after that photo was taken.

And then it’s . . .   history.   Just history.

I was a history major at the university.  I still study history,  but somehow I didn’t expect my own life to become . . .  history.

So that’s where I’ve been lately – away from The Spruce Tunnel.    Perhaps I should get back in and get on with things.    Some busy cheery things have happened this month too.

Today is Life.

There are still a few more pieces to fit together in my puzzle.

 

Bar Cross in middle

 

 

A RATHER HUMBLING FLUKE

October 24, 2015

FOOTBALL.   It’s Saturday.   Of course college football!  (It appears that football is the only thing keeping me connected here lately.)

spartans get fumble
By now,  many of you have heard of the fortuitous “fluke” that enabled the Spartans to recover a fluffed punt snap — somehow the punter is getting all the blame,  and not the center who made the bad snap (but who can understand Michigan fans?  ) —

spartans and dark blue

It’s interesting to observe in myself and in every other Spartan fan I see  that scoring the unexpected winning touchdown does not mean we have become a “better” team.   Not at all.

 We are good — but we were also lucky.   We could have been good, but unlucky.

I can’t speak for some of our  young, young   fans,  inspired by the many  fine microbreweries around the MSU campus,  they may be concluding something else altogether.   (Drink beer; feel invincible.)

However, to most fans,   today’s game against Indiana, still to come at this writing,  is by no means a certain win in the minds of the Spartans.

spartans vs indiana

Here is a Life Lesson that Coach D’Antonio is known for:   “Be attentive and give your best effort to every single play,  right through  to the end of the game.”

For those of us who don’t actually play football:   ” Work hard and prepare; and then give your best effort to every moment in your life, right to the end.”

Football or not,   live and work and play with heart;   and when those good opportunities come along, you’ll be more likely to be able to take advantage of them — and in the end,   your End,  you will have played your best.

No wasted time,  no moments of your life taken for granted.

0ur Creator likes that.

Heaven cropped

Go Spartans!!!    

(Sorry, Indiana;  I know the logo is upside down — but . . .  may your luck “run out” today, like an upside down horseshoe!)

FOOTBALL PROGRESS – WEEK TWO

September 22, 2015

I’m not a guy, okay?   I just enjoy football.     (While I knit.)       I enjoy how the game is played.

I don’t enjoy watching Jay Cutler get hurt.  Again.     And the Bears losing.  Again.

But here’s a repeat photo of the Bear I’m working on while I watch the game.

 That was Week One.

This is Week Two and I’ve enjoyed more games.   I’ve watched the Packers smack and the  Unluck of Andrew Luck,  and I’ve made more progress on the Bear —

 The back of the sweater is done and almost two sleeves.   The owner of this sweater will be arriving from California in three days.

There won’t be enough football games before then for me to finish the sweater,  but that’s okay.   It’s a good thing for him to see the progress.   Sweaters don’t just “come off the rack” in stores.    They don’t have to.    It will be good for Cooper to see a work in progress.    He’s in pre-Kindergarten, after all.

He’s kind of a Work In Progress himself.

And a Raiders fan.     Sigh-h-h-h-h-h.

SHORT PHOTO FOLLOW-UP ON THE MARINES

August 22, 2015

There were three young Marines involved in the take-down of the gunman on the French passenger train,  not two.  Here they are:

Marine UpdateNames and faces.

Pray for them.  Pray that they’ll feel the honor due them by their heroic action.   Pray that they’ll be strong and courageous heroes all their lives.    Pray that their fellow countrymen treat them like heroes and hold them up as good examples.

Then there is that other young man.  26 years old.

gunmanWell,  that’s the back end of him, with his hands tied behind his back.

Pray for him too.     He has a soul.

“IMAGINE” – VIEW FROM A WAGON TRAIN

August 19, 2015

(A word of caution:   Breaking the Sixth Commandment is a sin like any other sin.   It can bring bad consequences but it can be forgiven by the same means that all our sins — my sins — are forgiven    It’s an act of love and of mercy to talk freely about the consequences of any sin.  The sinner remains loved and lovable, with the clean love of God, and with repentance, and forgiveness.)

crucifix

I told a pretty story yesterday about two young people falling in love . . .

6 courting

And getting married, sweetly,  openly,  honestly.

And then they are open to the possibility of having a baby . . .

6 first baby

That’s all  God asks of us, if we are married.   Love each other, each other only;  excluding all others.  Be open;  be glad to receive children.     This fidelity will keep on giving rewards throughout their lives, coming up unexpectedly at times, and happily.    Ups and downs, like life itself, but always rewards of fidelity in marriage.

A happy, settled reward-filled life is what the Sixth Commandment protects.

Now let’s dissolve away all that companionship and peace and happiness.

bar dissolve er

The Sixth Commandment says:  “Thou shalt not commit adultery. . . ”  (and a whole bunch of other sexual acts against chastity and purity).

“Imagine” a world without “religion,” we are told.      Imagine no Sixth Commandment.    As I was doing my morning news reading,  I was assaulted several times by news of about 37,000,000   men and women who have an extra worry today — and extra burden of wondering “What’s going to happen to me?”

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37,000,000.    Really?   The Cheaters’ website was supposed to be anonymous and secret and, well,  you were supposed to be able to get away with it.    Shrug your shoulders?   Hey —  no Sixth Commandment, right?

I was going to then write about the finality of losing your virginity, men and women alike —  or, as nowadays,  boys and girls alike.    I was going to talk about fear of pregnancy, unwanted pregnancy,  the negative and dangerous results (sooner or later)  of using chemical means to prevent natural body functions,  the horror of abortions,  shame,  uneasiness,  secrecy,  bad reputations . . .

I was going to write about the ever-present sexual talk and innuendos, lust and the boredom it brings, obscenities and the self-degradation it causes . . .

I was going to write about  doctor worries,  dirty ickiness, disease  —

—   walking around with these little guys growing in you —

microbes vd      —  or their many, many different varieties of microbe cousins — all permanent residents in you — all ready to hop over into your next partner,  even if you begin to love her,  or him.

I was going to write about the psychological and emotional cost of breaking the Sixth Commandment.   The financial loss . .  .

But  I was reading this book . . .   about taking a wonderful ride through our country — slowly!

 Seeing America Slowly

Seeing America Slowly

That’s a picture I took of the inside cover of the book  Oregon Trail.   a man, about my age,  came across a historical marker pointing out that he was at a point along the original Oregon Trail;  and he got the idea that he would like to build a covered wagon and just follow the Oregon Trail as they did in the 1800s.

Now, I see these markers when I drive across the country, too,   and I’ve driven through beautiful scenery like this:

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I love the scenery, and I love my little blue car and it loves to drive!      I’ve never had an urge to go slowly,  but I’m glad this man did.  Every detail of the planning, the learning,  the route, and the things he saw along the way is very entertaining and highly informative!

But today I came across a chapter in his book which reminded me of the sadness of a culture without the Sixth Commandment.

He wrote of the wonderful friendliness and hospitality of the people in Kansas, along the old Oregon trail route.   They are ranchers, now, farmers, and some live in small towns.   The author noticed that there were lots of little children curious about his wagon and his mules  and there were lots of old people, friendly and helpful.   Grandparents of the little kids.

But there was no one around who would be the age of the children’s parents, or of the grandparents’ children.     Eventually he asked some of the older people.  “Where are all the parents?”    In town after town  no parents.  Just grandchildren and grandparents.

The answer:   “They’re gone.”      Meth.     Broken marriages.    Moved on with other partners.   Out of money . . . .    Broken-up families.     A whole generation gone;  gone with the old story:  Drugs, Sex, and Rock n Roll.

They had absorbed no instructions about becoming an adult and making a family.    No road map —

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No Sixth Commandment in these parents’ world.   I cant imagine their unsettledness now, their unhappiness and regrets in the future.   I guess we make sad songs and difficult movies about this generation.

The horror for our country is that the young grandchildren will not be taught chastity, purity, modesty,  respecting their physical bodies,   keeping themselves for their future spouses.   Being honest and upright before God, so they can be good and free and healthy.

Imagine a world without . . . the Sixth Commandment.      Imagine  having  no “Morals Manual”  from the One who made us.   Imagine having to just live with   un-repairable harm and damage.

Oh — here’s the book.    But . . .

 The Oregon Trail by Rinker Buck.

. . .  will edit this to un-recommend the book.    Too much foul language.    Such a coarse tone diminishes the quality of our society.  As we’ve heard many times,  “words matter.”       But the author had a good idea. . . .