Archive for March, 2008

There Is Only One Way to Stay Young! Images of Aging.

Tuesday, March 25th, 2008

Many have a dual image of aging that borders on psychosis. In their fantasy image of aging, their bodies and minds stay eternally youthful and supple like that of a young person regardless of passing time. Their reality image of aging scares and distresses many (especially women). In this image, their bodies and minds change with time, i.e., they age. And, these changes are associated with no longer being young. Yet, the only way to stay young is to die young! Not a very appealing option. Otherwise, aging in body and mind are inevitable and unavoidable.

Apparently, maturity in both body and mind once revered is now to be avoided. Or people want both maturity and youthfulness at the same time–an oxymoron? Or maturity in mind and youthfulness in body. I would think nobody would want the angst of being a teenager eternally. Or, the innocence and trauma of being inexperienced. So, the wisdom that usually comes with the experience of aging makes our lives better. Aging is Good. Not aging means one is dead.

So, why the duality of aging images? Why the billions of dollars being spent on cosmetics/plastic surgery, medicines and dietary supplements and exercise facilities and equipment? Basically, it is fear. Fear of no longer being the young person who attracted their significant other. Fear of losing ones significant other to a young you. Fear of no longer turning heads. Fear of gossip about ones aging looks. Fear of not being able to perform. Fear of not recognizing and loving the person one sees in the mirror every morning. Fear of getting old and not having accomplished life’s goals. Fear of approaching ones inevitable death.

Fear is a terrible way to live ones life. Denying the inevitable is unwise and maybe even foolish. This is not to say one should not mitigate the effects of aging. Taking care of oneself to maintain optimal health in body and mind is wise. But denying that aging is occurring is not wise.

We are as young as we feel no matter how old we are in body or mind. So, we should concentrate on feeling young and maintaing optimal health. And otherwise just accept the effects of aging without fear. Then, we will be able to enjoy the longevity rarely experienced by our ancestors.

‘Half-Baked’ Christians? Its Mysticism AND Ethics

Sunday, March 23rd, 2008

Christianity, like most religions, consists of a code of moral behavior (ethics) and mysticism. Religions usually have a Prophet or God that reveals moral values by which followers should behave. Religions evolved into teaching this moral behavior and also to the mystical worship of its Prophet/God.

In Christianity, Jesus Christ is this Prophet/God who preached desired moral behaviors and eventually died (and resurrected). The New Testament of the Bible and other writings document Jesus’ ethics teachings. Jesus’ teachings are an ethic that he and subsequent Christian leaders expect believers to follow.

Yet, Christianity as currently practiced by many has come to mean only the worship of Jesus as God (i.e, mysticism). They routinely ignore Jesus’ moral teachings as not essential to being a Christian. Thus, they are in a way ‘half-baked’ Christians.

Through the practice of mysticism only, these Christians practice their Christianity in worship services only. The rest of the time they frequently behave in any way they want including many unChristian ways since adherence to Jesus’ teachings is not necessary to their beliefs.

Christians that practice only mysticism and the Christian Leaders that condone and even encourage this practice are (according to Aldous Huxley’s The Perennial Philosphy) “turning to God without turing from themselves.” They use the “name of God to justify what they do in pursuit of place, power and wealth.”

Christianity is more than just calling oneself a Christian. It involves the worship of Jesus Christ (mysticism) and adhering to his moral behavior teachings (ethics). If Jesus were to decide on just one of the two–mysticism or ethics, I suspect he would select his believers follow his ethics and forgo the mysticism. In fact, Thomas Jefferson in The Jefferson Bible: The Life and Morals of Jesus of Nazareth deletes the mystical aspects of Jesus’ life from the New Testament and focuses on Jesus’ ethics that he believed everyone should live by.

There are No Evil People–Just Evil Doers

Saturday, March 22nd, 2008

The 5th Century book The Divine Names,; and the Mystical Theology written by someone using Dionysius of Areopagite’s name (translated by C. E. Rolt ISBN 0-922802-97-1) explores Evil in the world and how God allows it.

Basically, it writes that God made every living being Good. So, how is there Evil? It claims Evil exists because people are ignorant of Good or they are too lazy or weak to do Good. This rationale explains Evil in the world (i.e., Evil Doers) and stills allows for Evil Doers to change their ways and do Good. And, it puts the responsibility of doing Good and doing Evil on each person.

Those who are too lazy or weak to do Good may be more responsible for Evil Doings because they do know what is Good. Those who are are ignorant of Good have their leaders to blame since they have, at a minimum, allowed such a system of ignorance to exist and continue.

It is the responsibility of everyone to do Good and not be too lazy or weak to do it. It is the responsibility of everyone to be enlightened (see below) and not ignorant of Good that allows Evil Doing. In the end, each person is responsible for the Good that is their being. And, if everyone does Good which is their making, the Evil Doing will be no more.

[Enlightenment is man’s emergence from his self-imposed immaturity. Immaturity is the inability to use one’s understanding without guidance from another. This immaturity is self-imposed when its cause lies not in lack of understanding, but in lack of resolve and courage to use it without guidance from another. Sapere Aude! [dare to know] “Have courage to use your own understanding!”–that is the motto of enlightenment. –Immanuel Kant]

Support our Troops. Take Them Out of Harm’s Way!

Thursday, March 20th, 2008

It is specious how easily anti-war views are reframed as anti-troop stances. Nothing could be further from the truth. The best way to support our troops is to take them out of harm’s way. Who supports having them harmed needlessly!

Yes–our military are trained to be in harm’s way and complete military initiatives. But they are not trained to support political initiatives. Viet Nam became a political endeavor and Iraq was always a misguided Bush regime political whimsy.

So, support our troop and take them out of an untenable political endeavor and harm’s way. One cannot correct a mistake by making more mistakes.

It’s about Tribes NOT Race!

Wednesday, March 19th, 2008

Tribes (i.e., socio-political groups) make up the world’s arena. Clarence Thomas is Black and African-American and is a member of the American White Law & Order Tribe. Obama is Black and Kenyan-American and is a member of the African-American Tribe. Thus, when discussing social-political issues, the color of one’s skin doesn’t matter. With which tribes one identifies does!

Ironically, the American African-American tribe has backed Obama, a Kenyan-American even when Clinton has done more for their tribe. The reason is that the African-American remains a Primeval Tribe in a Modern Tribe coalition in order to survive and get political clout. Obama meets the ideas of a Primeval Tribal leader while Clinton is more a Modern Tribal leader.

The issue is that the Primeval Tribal Leader’s obligations are to their Primeval Tribe at the expense of others. The Modern Tribes Leaders are obliged to all tribes.