Spiritual Tidbits 3

Welcome to 2019

You may have heard the saying that the more things change, the more they stay the same….It isn’t always true, but sometimes it is.

There really hasn’t always been the Internet but there have always been stages of life.

Stages of life is something that I have always found interesting.  Like nearly everyone, I have tended to have preferences and person issues and development work commensurate with my age group.  I have always made some observations of and had some interest in other age groups.  It’s always different to really be each age group than it is to observe that group as older or younger than oneself.

Within the past 2 years I had a major surge of bothering to read The Bible (Protestant version) and finally made it so that 40 years after having started reading it in the 3rd grade, I have read the entire thing….aside from the 2 or 3 Catholic Bible books that aren’t in the Protestant versions of The Bible.  (reasons unknown by me, but I may redo the research so I can blog about it).

Age groups in The Bible

One of the tidbits I found to be awesome was when I was reading about how God used different age groups to deal with packing up the Temple in the wilderness.  I mean, WOW, maybe even WOWOWOWOWOWOOh hoo wow!

There were other events in at least 2 books of The Bible in which it became really noticeable that for some matters God said: use all the men between and 18 and 60 years old.

Other matters: Don’t let anyone under 30 years old touch that stuff!!!

In some cases: get someone who is at least 50 years old, if you want that dealt with properly.

I was honestly mildly stunned, but after a while sort of pleased.  None of us is useless for our stage in life and when each of us fulfills our divine destiny, there is a schedule to what needs to happen when, some of it is very detailed in terms of time of day and other stuff is really like: wow, don’t do that yet, or please do that.

Really?

In reality, it may have taken me so long to read the entire Bible because of laziness or spiritual attacks against me, but it’s also possible that it is actually better to leave most of it until over 30 years old.

Anyway, this time that’s the spiritual tidbit.

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Spiritual Tidbits 2

When is now?

Tevet 5778

Anno Dominae (Year of Our Lord aka Christian Era) 2019

Now is always just the present moment, in whatever language.

After the Mayan Calendar has run out.

What would Jesus the Messiah think of Zen?

It might be possible to practice Christianity with a few elements of the basic awareness insights popularized in Zen.  However, it would be wiser to shy away from the whole matter, lest it be a means of being seduced away from Yeshua the Messhiah.

Zen Christianity should be recognized as distinct from Zen Buddhism, but still involving Zen.  Aside from the koans: what is the sound of one hand clapping?  What is the sound of 2 elderly men napping?  If a tree falls in the forest but no one hears it, did it make a sound?…..My own very limited insight into Zen is revealed in the following examples:

The fact that I got and left when So-n-So arrived was caused by interpersonal emotions as many had believed, but was actually simply my reaction to the draft of air coming in through the front door in relation to where I had been sitting.  I realized this once at age 7 years but forgot all about the truth of until I was 47.

God’s Location

For many, in the beginning of awareness God is an external being.  It is true that one reason the RC church so admires mother Mary is because most people first learn what love is, what right and wrong are and about God through the mother.  Obviously, also with babies, mothers are both the source of one’s very flesh and of nourishment.

Fathers are not irrelevant, but they also kindle something reminiscent of the other relationship to God as external to oneself: the father is just as real but not connected the way the mother is.  Also a course of one’s very flesh and protection, loving guidance and all the rest but there is almost a gulf of distance between every baby and the father when contrasted to the state of mother and baby.  However, just as the distance increases between mother and child once someone is born alive; the distance to father can decrease, often for the first time since the conception.

Similarly, God can be perceived as being as external yet intimately involved as parents.

Holy Ghost

There are also people who experience initiation and revelation of God which enables people to perceive God as residing both externally but also internally.  Be careful not to draw the Luciferian wrong conclusion.  Having the spark of the divine within and having been made in God’s image, being able to internalize the teachings of God and all of that can all contribute to a sense of having God as indwelling.

Imbibing the Eucharist is also taking in Jesus, after the same manner that when we eat and drink what was not-us is separated into what becomes us for a while, and waste.

People who have the Holy Spirit initiation are blessed with being able to experience indwelling God along the same lines as breathing but instead of the problematic Devil in the air it’s God.

Diverse Manifestations

The Holy Spirit can manifest very subtly and quite the opposite.  The arrival of the Holy Spirit in the book of Matthew, immediately following baptism by ‘John the Baptist’ (who was a Jew preaching repentance of sins in the wilderness), Jesus began to manifest spiritual powers: miracle works: healings, raising from the dead, cleansing lepers and casting out of demons from people suffering from possession.

The Holy Spirit is known to trigger and release healings that are 100% medically verifiable, but not explainable this year via ‘establishment medicine’.  It should be noted that in the event that God’s healing methods come into understanding that will in no way detract from their efficacy nor from their reality as divine healing power.

The Holy Spirit can cause visions (private revelations), but not hallucinations; repentance, complete and spontaneous healings, and changes in awareness of a different nature.

Sometimes the Holy Spirit can just make a family dinner go more smoothly.

True to Life Anecdote

At a believer’s convention with more than 10,000 guests:  one believer who has been diagnosed with a type of cancer and has only 6 weeks to live is suddenly hurled across the stage, rolls into and bumps his head against the leg of the on-stage piano.  Despite the physical discomfort, when that person stands up, he is 100% cancer free.  That’s the Holy Spirit.

Maiden, Mother & Crone: mother > crone

Stages of Life (for women):  Although in the TV show Merlin they referred to the Triple Goddess, all they were referring to are the 3 main stages of adult female life: the maiden or young woman, next the mother which just means she’s older and has child/ren, then lastly the crone: normally menopausal and quite possibly grandchildren or at least old enough to have grandchildren and even adult grandchildren and great-grandchildren (old has several levels itself).

Today’s post is about later stages of the mother.  I’m nearly 51 years old and have an “adult child” rather than a child.  While still firmly middle aged based on an 85 year life span, maybe more or a little less, that’s about it….I’m as much older as a 30 year old as my 23 year old offspring is to a 3 year old….as much older as it takes a human to go from conception to adulthood.

At some point it dawned on me that for many people “middle age” is the longest period of life.  However, I’ve also met enough older people to see that youth may in fact be the shortest phase.  During youth and one’s 20s it really doesn’t seem like most of one’s life was just the warm up for the reality; the vast majority of life spent as an adult.

Teens & Perimenopause

What these 2 phases in life have in common are major hormonal fluctuations that can cause mood swings, behavioral and psychological changes or even personality changes.  Self-identification can also shift.  (In truth, pregnancy can be even more drastic but that’s a story for another day).

Both phases have everything to do with human reproductive power.

Differences

Teens develop into being able to be mothers and adults.  During perimenopause, we’re heading towards the exit door: been there, done that.  All finished with baby making, thanks so much.

During either phase it can seem like it isn’t just a phase, but it is.  Perimenopause lasts as long, or longer than being a teenager does.  Freaky, but true.

Changes

Whether or not something is a blessing, a curse or something else can depend on how it is interpreted.  Perhaps because I was single or due to religious beliefs/interest, when perimenopause struck me at age 46 years I at first believed that God had finally answered a prayer that I stop being tortured by intense sexual desire regardless of whether or not acting on it would be okay.  Right before I wrote this post, I read some other lady’s: married women may suffer new kinds of anxiety about how to keep her husband happy when she stops experiencing nearly as much sexual desire….Which was really nothing more than a plot by Nature to persuade us to engage in behavior liable to lead to babies and raising more people.

For my own sake, it really felt like a blessing…and really did just feel like I was no longer being tortured by built-in desires.  It did not make it so that I have absolutely zero sexual desire, responsiveness or interest but like I was no longer in chronic danger of being overwhelmed by intense energies that I struggled with for control over my own behavior during some of my life.  I hadn’t ever meant to either deny nor to make too much of sexual energies.  I didn’t find it that easy to keep the proper balance of them in relation to my own lifestyle for 30 years; then finally some relief.

It did make enough of a difference that I realized that had I still been married, it would have become about how to convince my husband that I still love him when instead of his lustful, passionate wife I was suddenly satisfied with a hug and trying to avoid sex….it seemed like a good husband might wonder if I were having an illicit affair and that explained the sudden lack of sexual interest.

No need to make babies = no need to feel horny.

I’m a fairly learned person, so I do recall reading that the great Athenian philosopher Socrates wrote that for men, the greatest gift of older age is being able to think straight because the cloudiness caused by sexual desire wanes.

But seriously folks, what else?

The adventure of perimenopause mainly means that 25 years of menstrual regularity suddenly became irregular.

The most shocking discovery was that those tiny daily panty liners are for older women more so than for 12 to 15 year old girls.  I never would have believed it until it started happening to me.

The first month I had a weird period I thought it was either a miracle from God or a type of witchcraft I hadn’t run into before.  By the 3rd month I realized that it was just Mother Nature….Since it began, some months are almost the same as when I was 30 but much of the time it is much less and lighter flow.

A lot of the time, my periods are only as much in an entire week as one day of heavy flow at ages 30 and 40.

Then, in my later 40s, for the first time since I’d gotten pregnant well over ten years earlier, I just didn’t menstruate.  That went on for a few months.  Right after I had concluded that I never would again, I did.

The last month of being 50 the big thrill on that front was that I menstruated in December for the first time since I was 47 years old.  Weird.

Benefits

Aside from not being tormented by excessive sexual desire with no husband, there have been a few other benefits of perimenopause: less fuss and filth and reduced expenses of feminine products.

For me personally, the greatest benefit has been an emotional evenness or reduced emotional reactivity that I really like.  It doesn’t mean that I don’t have any emotional reactions, but it is less drastic than when I was younger.  It is possible that this is only 20% the result of hormones and the rest is based on other factors, but I suspect that it is 99% hormonal changes, and only 1% any changes in personal character or personality.

Sorry if that doesn’t seem great to you; those are really all the benefits as far as I can tell so far.

German Stereotypes

Kraft Klub (German band)

For foreigners

Germans are well aware that foreigners have tendencies to see them in certain ways.  Which region of the world they are dealing with has some influence of how they are seen.

They know that people to the West of Germany, especially French and English speaking peoples tend to jump to certain conclusions.  Some right, others wrong.

  1.  Germans are frightening powerful yet unpleasant and speak a difficult language that native speakers of English wouldn’t wish upon their worst enemies….except maybe the Germans (ha ha ?)
  2.  NaZi ism.  This is related to item #1, but also involves the perpetuation in the USA at least where there are very old Jewish people who’s native language is either German or Polish, who have American grandchildren.  They moved due to the NaZi Party.

3. Still related: in the USA for propaganda reasons, the vast majority of information        that Americans get about the Germans and the German language is WW2 re-runs.  Due to this most Americans only know a few German words they learned while watching WW2 related documentaries or TV shows or movies.

4.  Frau und frauline:  Germany is full of happy, blonde women with large breasts who serve beer for a living, at least until they get married and have children.

There are people who have a more current image of Germany.  In 2012 it was rated the most popular European country, internationally.

True Stuff about Germans

They can be rather serious, mostly because the Summer is not that warm and people can be hard.   German is not that easy to speak but when German there is no choice if one hopes to get anywhere in life.

Germans do tend to be proud but sometimes also uniquely sensitive.  They know that if they were not so great and powerful they would not be and have been so dominant in Europe both in peace time and in war time.  They know that both North American nations and the Russians viewed them as “the Villain” in 2 world wars.  Because of what they have been through as a people, they also feel that the nation degenerated to having been a menace for awhile….but Germans and what is Germany is really much more complicated….Given that the modern “German state” is about 120 years old, but there have been German speaking people living in the same region for 2000 years and more.  In fact, the “First Reich” really was 1000 years of Germany being a Catholic Empire and simultaneously the remainder of the Western Roman Empire.  *Personally, despite having learned this I find it hard to break through the American-Hollywood images of the Romans and of the Germans to accept this basic truth.

Germans have poor sense of humor.  Well, they don’t have the gentlest or most consistent senses of humor but I can assure you that they are less likely to laugh at jokes in English when travelling outside of Germany and dealing with using their “holiday English”.   I’m sure there are numerous incidents in which some German didn’t get the joke.

administration architecture berlin building

Photo by Ingo Joseph on Pexels.com

Boxing Day 2018

Back to work already?

Today, while going about my business I came across some people who were already back at work after the holiday.  I was a little surprised by some of what they told me.

The reason I was surprised was simply because I am the kind of person who genuinely loves having time with relatives and friends at the holiday.  I’m sure I’m one of hundreds of millions of people who feel the same way.  However, I am happy to report that some of the people who were already back at work felt pretty okay or even better about being there.  It was just that I had expected that either they would feel as if they had to lie to me about it, or that most of the people who worked today would have been miserable about not having had more time to enjoy their relatives and friends.

Christmas Day

Due to my personal preferences and stage in life and spiritual interest, I actually spent almost the entire day on Jesus.  Again, I’m sure that my being actively oriented that way at the religious holiday commemorating Jesus’s birth is something that hundreds of millions of people around the world also did, but for me it was somewhat special because it was voluntary and I did it that much more than I have done most years so far in my life.

If you did to, I hope you felt wonderful about it.

Good wishes

This is just to wish you all well, and hope that you are either continuing to enjoy what Christmas does to your life and the lives of those you love, or that you are glad that the craziness has already passed you by.

Spiritual Tidbits

 

 

 

 

gray turtle
Photo by Anand Raghu on Pexels.com

The Spirit in Nature

Many people still claim to feel spiritually uplifted when walking in natural surroundings which they prefer.

The order of the natural world is still one of the major premises in many of the logical arguments that lead to the logical conclusion that God definitely and obviously exists.

It has been said that mathematics is humans reading the mind of God.

Remember: Nature was made by God and that includes people.  In Judaism and Christianity, God told the people that God created humanity in His image (please don’t get hung up on gender).  One understanding of what this means is that the self-awareness and awareness of the outside world that humans are capable of, is what makes humans of such interest to God.  Humans are the only earthly creature capable of noticing and interacting with God.

Spiritual Practices Effect Awareness

One rebuff of nay-sayers is to point out that it is actually true that practicing a religion enable a person to develop awareness that may not develop otherwise.  This is a bit like learning any other skill.  Prior to learning a skill one may or may not even be aware of it.  In some cases, there is awareness, but that’s it.

To use an unrelated example: Cashiers.  Nearly everyone is aware of being served by cashiers.  Far fewer people have experience being one.  Not everyone who has been trained to be a functional cashier has had the exact same experience with it, depending on when they learned it and in what context.  However, it is still true that often enough, if you have been trained as a cashier and were competent, there are certain things you will tend to do, and/or to notice.  Just one example that I still tend to do, is making the bills face the same way and often arrange them by denomination.

By analogy, spiritual practices that people engage in have real effects.  Those who meditate and fast will have information and experience unlike those who only pray briefly or at church but are great about giving to charity.

The bottom line: Consider the source: the criticisms made by the ignorant are less reliable than the criticisms or comments of those trained and experienced in a given area.

Ability is not equally distributed

Even in spiritual matters, there is as much diversity of talent and ability as we find in sports, academic areas and in types of work.  This means that any person may be naturally better or worse with respect to spiritual awareness and behavior.

The relief for everyone who suffers from not having a great natural (God given, by the way) ability is permitted or even encouraged to pray for God to provide the power to achieve what would naturally be impossible.  There are people God loves to use to do things that the person really doesn’t have the natural ability to do; it is not a scam.

This also means that it is not wise to take the advice of those who don’t know about spiritual matters, but it also means to have patience and mercy with those who have no special blessing or spiritual talent, and as a consequence they may have no natural interest nor great insight into God.  

General Information about Philosophy

the most concise work of applied philosophy ever known

Straight answers from a know-it-all

Do you know what it is?

In truth, during childhood I had no idea what philosophy was.  My mother knew, but never thought of it as being anything she needed to tell me about.  As a 16 year old I read a book by an Englishman named Alan Watts.  Mainly I remember only that it was a nice little book and a I liked it.  I liked a lot of what I read.  Little did I know back then, that it was written by one of the first major 20th century thinkers who attempted to understand the Buddhists from a English, Christian background that so many of us have.

If you already know what it is, you may not find this blog post particularly interesting, but if not: here we go.

Philosophy

This is a wide ranging subject area.  Like most academic ‘knowledge areas’ it is more attractive to some and less so to others.  Examples of questions a person has that may indicate an interest in philosophy:

What is Time?        What does it all mean?              Is that True?

Is there any such thing as objective truth?      Is morality absolute or relative?

                                                     How do I know if God is real?

Is our perception of truth and reality dependent upon how the human mind works?

Is it all just neurons firing in the brain?!

     Is it all just hormones?

Can I really come to know by thinking the right way?

Is the scientific method really that important?

Is it related to how the human brain works?

What Next?

If you do ask questions of those kinds and are interested in getting actual answers, one of the things you can do is learn more about philosophy.  One way to do that, is to buy the booklet Five Big Questions in Life and how to answer them.

There are lots of books and lots of philosophers.  By the way, there are and have been women in philosophy for over 1000 years.  It is true that as usual, the gender difference made a difference.  Because of how it does 500 years ago the most successful women philosophers were married noble women who exchanged letters with one of the most prominent male philosophers of that generation.  In fact, Women Philosophers of the Early Modern Period is one example of that type.  It is true that throughout history because of gender and social-political challenges, there have been times when women were able to contribute to the field more effectively than at other times.  This is not intended to denigrate in any way the reality that most of the great tomes of wisdom out there were put together by men who depended upon women to do the bulk of the raising of their children, which helped make them able to do what they did.  Even so, I just wanted to make sure that both men and women know that women have been involved in the field.  In the 20th century, the philosopher/ess Ayn Rand was able to articulate an entire organized philosophy but ultimately one of her most trusted male adult student-admirers is the one who wrote it up in the book Objectivism

Personal Favorites

Here are some of my personally favorite philosophers:  Gottfried Wilhelm Hegel, Friedrich Nietzsche, Thomas Aquinas, Marcus Aurelius, Socrates & Plato, Aristotle. I have not ever agreed with any of them about everything.

As a woman, I am always glad when any of us achieves anything profound, and I also greatly admire Luce Irigaray, Ayn Rand as well as Simone de Beauvoir and in fact, some of those ladies from that book Women Philosophers of the early modern period.

Louise Andreas-Salome gets a special vote for “women who tried” because she was able to get through an idea or two: I believe she was a Christian believer and had an idea about “a victimless society”.  Mainly, she was able to help women get access to being taught well and have prominent male philosophers as guest speakers.

Weird Stuff about Philosophy

  1. Philosophy brand cosmetics.  They are a real company and I don’t understand what happened.
  2.  The philosophy of a business or organization is often summed up into a concise paragraph; the vast majority of time is spent in implementing and/or attempting to implement some pithy philosophical wisdom or insight.
  3.  Many people jump to conclusion that people good at philosophy are not going to earn money or are impractical people.
  4.  While numerous people seem to believe that everyone interested in philosophy is an atheist, there is a whole other school of thought that describes philosophy as simply being theology’s maid servant.
  5.  Biblical factoid:  because I was fascinated by Athenian philosophy and am one of the horde of people who love Jesus, I wondered how to view them together…Then, eventually, I discovered that everyone can read in the book of Acts, what happened to the apostle Paul when he actually went to Athens, during that very time often covered in Ancient Philosophy: the Greeks in philosophy courses at colleges and universities.

Conclusions

I hope that those of you who didn’t already know what this subject area is about, have some clue thanks to this blog post.  As with most things in life, some people are drawn to it and love it whereas others find it either empty or unpalatable.   This blog post was written by someone who has studied a wide variety of subjects but for some reason loved philosophy.