Depending on your point of view

by Newnameelizabeth

I stayed home from going to our rent property with George to meet the real estate agent for the same reason he does not want me to go with him to the car salesman. I side with the salesman, though I cannot be one because it is too awkward. This realization as applying to this agent on this day brought to mind a post I did a long while back on David Bentley Hart siding with the batter in his essay on baseball. I said then I side with the pitcher. I see these two occupations as initiators of great plans and actions, and thus others who do not meet their terms become unwelcome buzz killers and foilers of grand schemes.

Of course this could be turned around. When I am rooting for a team, my star batter has a noble plan to hit it out of the park, and it would be nice if the pitcher would get on board. If he doesn’t he is a tricksy schiester.

All players are intensely focused on the ball, however. For this to be worthy, it has to be holy. The best players conform themselves better to the nature of the ball including it’s hardness, weight, bounciness, and of course, trajectory. Good real estate agents similarly respect and honestly convey the properties of the property.

Just do it

by Newnameelizabeth

Why is it so hard to stay focused on the one thing needful? I know something about easy distractibility, but even ADD people can complete a Lego project, and phobic people can overcome severe anxieties if they are sufficiently motivated.

Perhaps God’s mercy is to blame. Or maybe the Theotokos encourages God to be too lenient and understanding, and to not give us ultimatums. Not that he doesn’t ever.

The fear of God has motivated lots of people, especially in the past. Today’s lenient society has taken away the sense of that to a large extent, not that we wont regret it.

But if God wants people to come to Him of their own free will and not just by coercion, and offers blissful union, why don’t we do it?

I cracked open a spiritual book for the first time in a while just before writing this because I’m trying to procrastinate less in many areas. I’m a little more motivated because cleaning for our house blessing last week made such a difference, but was so difficult because of neglect. I’m also trying to not put off writing so much. So it is because of a stick more than a carrot.

But then the carrot comes:

– the Ambigua to John is unified around the experience of divinization, which Maximos characterizes as the deepest longing of the saints, the desire of human nature for assimilation to God, and the yearning of the creature to be wholly contained within the Creator (Amb citations). The Ambigua is in many ways a map of this experience, a collection of notes made by a seasoned traveler, marking ou the path to God trodden by the saints from the beginning of time.

p .xvii of the Introduction to On Difficulties in the Church Fathers, The Ambigua, Vol.I, Maximos the Confessor, Edited and Translated by Nicholas Constas

Asperger introspection?

by Newnameelizabeth

Finding out that one’s quirkiness may be due to a disorder instead of a unique personality is a bit disorienting. Yet all Aspies are different as are all normies, if there is such a thing. So I don’t know how the following fits with us or me only or with them too.

Self perception: First I’ll say that before western culture was so deconstructed, one could assume a cultural identity that everyone could relate to – I’ve even heard black people say they related to it, and they are now called sell-outs. I am not saying that it was necessarily healthy or real, but that the perception of everyone buying into it created a baseline, an attainable bar to measure onesself by. This was fad culture, but also longstanding romantic, chivalric culture where people knew their place and how many points they got. Therefore one could be comfortable with a certain level of success, namely getting married, having children and earning a living.

With everything up for grabs now, one is no longer sure that even having three square meals a day is the right way to go. Should we be growing the population? Just how much does one person hurt the environment? Have we put too much emphasis on able-ism and bootstrap pulling oneself up by-ism? Have the scientists been overconfident spinners of disinformation all along? How long was America the land of the free and the home of the brave?

Ignorance was bliss, and I wonder if like Jordan Peterson says, society is better believing in God whether He exists or not, that self-awareness, like atheism, will throw us into chaos or disillusioned inaction.

Back to introspection, if I am not who I think I am, how am I known? By what others think of me? If normies are iterances of a deligitimized culture, and aspies adopt expressions from whom they’re with, then everyone is wearing borrowed clothes. Who knows how one would have dressed otherwise? Wearing borrowed clothes can still say something about a person. It’s the somethings that we try to piece together. One can know something about a mountain by a photograph. One can try to put together a 3D model from lots of photographs. Information can be obtained about its structure from outcroppings, and of course more from a visit to know scale and context. But even geologists don’t have a precise story about all the workings inside or its history. Right now old models of gradualism, which replaced new creationism with a single catastrophy, are being put in the controversial category by evidences of sudden multi-catastrophism with almost(?) total rebuildings. Stories are wildly disparate among sincere, knowledgable recounters.

Yet we know something and somehow mostly cope, survive or even thrive. Is it enough to know it’s weird, or is that just an Asperger thing?

The Russell Carlson

by Newnameelizabeth

First there was the Great Courses Geology course that changed me from young earth to old earth, then there was astrophysicist Hugh Ross to see what God was doing over such a long period of time, then Stephen Meyer to see it from a more biological level. Now there is The Russell Carlson podcast to see what He did just 11 to 14,000 years ago. Here’s an introduction:

The Edmund Fitzgerald

by Newnameelizabeth

I watched this video because we’re thinking of road tripping to Michigan’s Upper Peninsula. I didn’t know I didn’t know about what happened to the Edmund Fitzgerald. 😢

Source Code

by Newnameelizabeth

I stumbled upon a Source Code (2011) on Amazon Prime while looking for a good Jake Gyllenhaal movie, which it is. Made me nostalgic for the America and values we thought we had 11 years ago.

Why ocean levels may not rise so much

by Newnameelizabeth

During the q&a of this informative lecture

someone asked if melting glaciers would increase the weight of the ocean, causing it to subside and get deeper. The lecturer said that is logical, and not something he’s read, but that he thinks tectonic movement of the ocean plates changes the shape of the basins more dramatically.

Therefore, the oceans could create more room for melting glaciers. We don’t understand all the movements and changes of the earth to accurately predict such things. And we can’t say that the way lower levels of shorelines were due to glacier displacement either. They seem to be finding that tectonics are responsible for many features rather than uniformitarian water movement alone.

Is it or not?

by Newnameelizabeth

“Your life is not an audition for the afterlife

YouTube just showed me an ad for a new movie, An Interview with God. Fear of hubris, error, prelest, presumption, idolatry, and self-projection keep most of us from writing such a thing. And talking about God in general. But these attempts maybe also get people thinking, inquiring, and maybe finding a little.

Anyway, the aforementioned was one of God’s statements in the movie. This struck me as being opposed to my recent considerations that the fear of God is more than it is sometimes cracked up to be.

It sort of depends where you are. If you are in the throws of rejection, then thinking about God’s judgment can be intolerable. And Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God has probably caused lots of neuroses, and rejection of Christianity. But the above goes too far in the opposite direction.

I was recently struggling with how to think about how God thinks of me, not enjoying the presumption he thinks I’m adorable. Then I was reminded of a painful sin, and I was humbled. And a little afraid. Then I thought that He does not want me to think He’s mad, but to put a little space of unknowing between us. I’ve confessed and repented, but I cannot definitively say it does not matter anymore. No one can, even if offended parties try to say so. Who knows the cosmic damage? We can hope it will all work for good, but we cannot Cromwell-style slash and burn and with abandonment joyfully believe it is all God’s will.

So it is better for my mental health to neither assume reward nor punishment, but to pray with respect for His holiness and my lack thereof, “God be merciful to me a sinner”, now and in the afterlife.

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by Newnameelizabeth

I’ve been busy with home and new Weatherford Church improvements. In searching for a way to deal with my yellow stained limestone, I came across Romabio lime wash, which also works on brick in which the Church is clad in a dreary tan since the 60’s. The fun thing about this wash is that you can spray or rub it off to let the masonry show through in places.

I ordered a sample quart in Riposo beige to just cover some stains at home and get used to working with it. My plan is to later go over it with white and rub that off to let some of the beige show through instead of my stains.

I used the diluted liter on a backyard wall and then the stains on my fireplace. Here’s before:

After cleaning with soap, water, sprayer, and brush, which combination we hadn’t yet tried 😔:

And after:

I experimented with washing and rubbing some off but am not doing that step with this application. I’m looking forward to seeing how it will look with white wash, but that will have to wait till after we do the Church.

*Addendum: the wash is lightening as it dries:

Pray for rain

by Newnameelizabeth

I hope the Sequoias, redwoods, and countless other trees from there to Texas don’t all die in this heat and drought. Lord have mercy on them and all of the animals and people who love them.