Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Sad news today... remembering Brother Smethers

It seems like such a long time ago but around 2005 I was ordained through the United Christian Ministries International. I was trying to start at church here in Billings and did some research on different organizations that would ordain me for ministry. The biggest reason was to be accountable to someone in my venture.

Long story short, I decided that I no longer needed the ordination and sort of let it go. I made friends with a guy on Facebook who let me know that the head of UCMI had died in June. I am sort of sad as since his death the website is gone. I did make a few friends there so to see part of my past (in a way) gone. Here is Brother Smethers's obituary. http://hosting-24048.tributes.com/obituary/show/Steven-B.-Smethers-101459106 

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Am I the only one that sees this?

1. A man is selling single cigarettes on the street and is confronted by police who in the situation choke him to death.[1]

2. People are upset as to how this tragic situation is handled and create signs and t-shirts saying, "I can't breathe". [2]

3. Police of the NYPD wear t-shirts saying, "I can breathe". One is asked what they meant by it. "If the man had not resisted arrest he would not have been choked and would still be breathing.[3]

4. Two police have just been assassinated in NYC. [4]

5. To add to this stupidity the chief of police stated, "I hope there are marches for these two officers like there was for the others." I am like WHAT? Is he that stupid? I agree there should be something to honor the officers. Of course, now people are asking for an apology for his stupid statement. [5]

Does anyone get this? Is the NYPD (as well as other PD around the US) this stupid? Why not apologize for a sad situation where a life is lost EVEN IF YOU MAY BE RIGHT. I just see this is not the end-- that there is going to be more escalation of violence toward police in general. I know there are good cops out there--but corruption is making harder for police and the public.

Fan the flames NYPD's finest... fan those flames and get more officers killed. Just apologize for the death of anyone even if it is a clean kill. A life is a life, black, white, red, yellow, brown, civilian, or police officer. I am one American that fears the police more than I do any terrorist. Do you think that is crazy? Do you realize you re eight times more likely to die in the hands of a police officer that from a terrorist? [6]

No one has to die if people just stopped to think instead of seek to harm others. This country is so polarized that it is only "either/or", but it is not only "either/or"... all it takes is some common sense and respect for others. How can we change this America?

Monday, December 08, 2014

The problem with OUR experience: Love, God, and Science

I have come to believe this is not the world that God created. OK. While God created it, we have become mad with our sights on ourselves. We lost sight of the true creation and creator. We have fallen into a mental illness that separates us from reality. I call this the insanity of humanity. We want to cover our illness with anything that we see comforts us. This means that even religion that people use to buffer our failings by works as we attempt to appease a god that we perceives hates us for our failings.

We also go so far as to say, “God is not real” as we puff up our pride and arrogance and relish the idea that we are so much like a god we know everything. That is called delusion and it is a mental illness. If someone were to say to you, “I am God” or even, “I am a god” you would assume he or she are insane. I know I would. However many do this every day when they proclaim there is no God. The delusion they experience is the non-realization that they are no God as they are finite beings who have a limited knowledge as to what is scientifically known. Not only is there knowledge limited by what they scientifically do not know, but by his or her ability to understand things like love.

If there is not God, there is no love. Love would only be a chemical reaction in the brain that makes you desire sex. How romantic is that? Yes, I would be reduced to some chemical reaction in my brain and love would not be a reality. The logical reasoning that there is no God reduces love to nothing. Love become no more a reason to do good for others, but only a functional adaptation to procreate. All motives are selfish as they come from our own desires that the chemicals in our brain created.

The bible states, “God is love.”, and every person has an innate desire to be loved. [1] Children die from lack of loving contact. [2] The latter is a scientific and observable fact. The only reason we love others is that we once were loved. While some may say that is a learned process, it still does not explain what love is. Science cannot explain what love is. It can tell you the physical and chemical reactions that may cause a ‘love” response, but it cannot explain what love really is. Love must be experienced to be understood. For example, a frog can be dissected and science can tell you that a frog has a heart, lungs, and other parts. However, is that all a frog is? Tell a boy or girl who are at a pond that a frog is just some biological parts as they chase the frog and experience what a frog is.

There is also more to our life than mere experience. One person’s experience is the same and yet also different from another. Imagine as humans our experience is that the world is round. However, if we were a muon traveling faster than the speed of light we would experience the world as flat. Why then is our own experience greater than another’s is? The video that is posted with this blog post asks that same question. [3] If our own experience can be questionable then to state with certainty “there is no God”, become delusional. To say there is love also become as delusional without there being a way to experience it. I found love when God found me. I sought out love but found there was more pain than love. Love covered pain. Being loved taught me truly to love others. The thing that I found true is that without God, love is just a chemical reaction in the brain that stimulates my sexual desires... Damn, ain't that romantic?

However, when I was found by God and began to understand His Grace, love became real to me. Love is real and without God, it means nothing. I might as well be a dog in heat but instead, love compels me to tell my story of faith, love, mercy, grace, and redemption. For me, love has no meaning without God. An atheist wants to take that away. Love over experiential science? While science is great, people need love over the limitations of science.

 I am not saying the earth is flat, but then again, it is only a matter of perspective... I am not saying God's existence is provable, but then again, that is a matter of relationship and experience through faith. My experience states God is real. 

[1] 1 John 4:16
[2] Szalavitz, Maia. Psychology Today. 6 1, 2010. http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/born-love/201003/touching-empathy (accessed 12 8, 2014). 
[3] https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VNqNnUJVcVs&feature=youtu.be