… with race and with aggrandizing his own celebrity.
May I never emulate either feature.
I keep telling them not to let guys sit on the bench in the shower buck naked.
They don’t listen.
So again, Friday night 08/30/13, when I went to put my stuff on the bench, here was this heavy brown smudge. I carefully avoided it, but I told the peacekeeper, Philip, since he has access to gloves, rags and bleach, and I don’t. He was texting.
When I came out of the shower to dry off and dress, the smudge was still there. Philip was still texting.
This is a perfect example of why I think the New Age is just so much hooey. There is work to do here and now. That it may not all be pleasant doesn’t change the fact: there is work to do here and now.
The ecliptic is a great circle in the sky along which the Sun, moon and planets all move. All eclipses occur along this line; thus the name. The constellations of the Zodiac are lined up along this circle as well.
Although the Sun is on the ecliptic at all times, every day it moves a bit westward along the ecliptic, almost but not quite completing a full circle once every year. The degree as a unit of measure for angles, came to be as ancient astronomers sought to plot this motion — 360 degrees makes a full circle, just as 365¼ days make a full year. The Sun moves about one degree westward along the ecliptic each day.
The Sun’s position on the first day of spring is called the “equinoctial point.” Because the Sun does not quite complete a full circle along the ecliptic in a year, the equinoctial point moves very gradually eastward along the ecliptic, completing a full circle every 25,800 years. The equinoctial point passes through each constellation of the Zodiac in an average of 2,150 years.
Right now, the equinoctial point, where the Sun is on the first day of spring, is in Aquarius. Thus we are said to currently be in “the Age of Aquarius.” Since this began only a few years ago, it is being called the “New Age.” Immediately previous to this was the Age of Pisces (the Fishes), which began circa 30 CE; previous to that was the Age of Aries (the Ram), which began circa 1400 BCE. It is notable that at the dawn of the Age of Pisces, the New Testament focused on twelve fishermen (Matthew 14:19); and that at the dawn of the Age of Aries, the Bible focused on twelve shepherds (Genesis 46:32).
The most familiar expression of the promises that have been made concerning this “New Age,” is in the lyrics of the opening song of the 1967 musical Hair:
When the moon is in the Seventh House
And Jupiter aligns with Mars
Then peace will guide the planets
And love will steer the stars
This is the dawning of the age of Aquarius …
Harmony and understanding
Sympathy and trust abounding
No more falsehoods or derisions
Golden living dreams of visions
Mystic crystal revelation
And the mind’s true liberation
I have what I feel are good reasons to believe in something like astrology. But as to all this “New Age” stuff, I have my doubts.
On the one hand, I see no evidence that it’s going to happen.
The Age of Aquarius so far seems to me no different from the Age of Pisces before it, nor from the Age of Aries before that. Human behavior hasn’t changed in the last 10 years, or 50, or 100, or 500, nor 1000.
From the Bible: ca. 1000 BCE, David “defeated the Moabites and, making them lie down on the ground, measured them off with a cord; he measured two lengths of cord for those who were to be put to death, and one length for those who were to be spared. *** [H]e killed eighteen thousand Edomites in the Valley of Salt.” (2 Samuel 8:2,13)
Was that age more brutal than our own?
On the other hand, to lose oneself in dreams of an inevitable wonderful future is the antithesis of presence. It does not empower one to do the work that must be done here and now; not to deal with an abusive boss, a cold spouse, a rebellious child, a terminal illness. It will not lift me out of homelessness or joblessness.
The task I face most consistently right now is to see God’s image in my neighbor, who in my current context is disproportionately likely to be ugly, filthy, addicted, deranged, dependent or criminal. I cannot wait for a time when my neighbors will all be beautiful; I must do it now. This is my task, without any reference to any New Age.
Don’t get me wrong. The future has my permission to be just as glorious as it may choose. Right now, however, someone needs to clean the shower bench.
on air talent, talk show host, talk radio, the homeless blogger
From a flyer announcing a presentation tonight at 7:00 p.m. at Enoch Pratt Free Library:
Record unemployment and rampant corporate greed, empty houses but homeless families, dwindling opportunitites in a paralyzed nation — these are the realities of America, land of the free and home of the new middle-class poor.
In The Rich and the Rest of Us, award-winning broadcaster Tavis Smiley and Dr. Cornel West, one of the nation’s leading public intellectuals, take on the “p” word — poverty. They challenge all Americans to re-examine their assumptions about poverty in America — what it is and how to eradicate it.
I cannot attend that presentation, even if I wanted to, since as of 3:00 p.m. I must head back to the shelter to stay in for the night.
I know little about Cornel West and nothing about Tavis Smiley, but I do know something about poverty. I do not believe it can be eradicated. Thus any analysis that supposes that it can, is mistaken at its core.
The taco beef they gave us the other night was ground extremely fine, which led me to recall this case and wonder whatever had become of it.
This boils down to the power of a pejorative term — or slur.
Well, I hope you enjoy the video and find it informative. I can’t watch it. I’ll have to find a text story somewhere to find out what it says.
Monday, May 8, 2017
Church member Joe Stocks died suddenly Saturday. Natural causes.
Jesus said, “Let your light so shine before others, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven.” That’s the kind of man Joe was. All kinds of men and women glorify God because of Joe’s good works.
The media have been bringing us contradictory reports of how Malala is viewed in her homeland.
Conspiracies do occur. In my previous work as a legal secretary, I was privy to secret campaigns to manipulate public opinion in various ways. That often comes to mind when I see a flurry of media coverage on any given subject. In recent years, for example, there was an explosion of coverage of the creation of vaccines for new, terrifying strains of the flu — that may not have proved so terrifying after all, but for the media hype itself — that impressed me as very likely a campaign to raise public esteem for pharmaceutical manufacturers.
Here we have two competing constituencies that, for whatever reason, are competing for U.S. public opinion concerning this woman.
(Originally posted 10/14/13.)
on air talent, radio talk show, talk show host, the homeless blogger
But for the racial aspect, the Trayvon Martin case would not be noticed.
I admit being less concerned about him than about the dozens of other teens who are gunned down every month across the country for no better reason and by people of their own race. Someone will object that a black perpetrator would have been arrested. I answer that an arrest and prison term won’t bring back the dead.
“During the interview with Cernovich, the 60 Minutes team realized that the very definitions of words like ‘true’ and ‘false’ were not agreed upon by everyone in the room.”
In recent weeks, my Yahoo! News feed has been inundated with misleading clickbait ads all from a single source. I’ve captured some of the images here.
In the time available, I didn’t manage to capture the one that shows a man’s head covered with a thick layer of peanut butter, which someone is styling like hair.
The real secret: There aren’t any.
Christmas day, when I sat down in the shower line at the shelter where I stay, Comet was showing the last 15 minutes or so of a movie. The din in the room normally precludes hearing any dialogue, but a momentary dip allowed me to hear this: one man told another on the phone, “The missing gospel has been found.”
There followed a long sequence of a woman writhing and screaming on a bed, while blood flowed from her hands, feet and scalp. This was interspersed with black-and-white scenes of Jesus’ crucifixion. The bedroom was engulfed in flames.
The next scene was of a man digging in the floor of a church while a nearby statue of the Virgin wept blood.
The movie concluded with three stills of white text on a black background.
The first still read to this effect:
The scroll can say whatever it likes.
The second still read to this effect:
It’s highly debatable that there’s any such consensus.
The third still read to this effect:
The Vatican is free to choose what it does and does not believe.
No horror movie will persuade me about the Gospel of Thomas.
Continue reading Secrets of the Dead Sea scrolls