Tag Archives: Focusing

9 Adar and bickering or loving followers of the Torah preparing for Pesach

The Catholics may have started their Lenten Season and try to lessen what they normally would eat and cut in entertainment activities. When we look around us we may find a few people who want to take the time to go over to a willing abstinence or reduction from some or all food, drink, or both, for a period of time.

Many religious observances have fasting in their program.

You should know that it is not bad to have every year some cleaning of the body and mind. Also in the house many may do a Spring cleaning. Abstinence from food or drink or both may be done for health, ritualistic, religious, or ethical purposes. All over the world we can find peoples taking abstention which may be complete or partial, lengthy, of short duration, or intermittent. Fasting has been promoted and practised from antiquity worldwide by physicians, by the founders and followers of many religions, by culturally designated individuals (e.g., hunters or candidates for initiation rites), and by individuals or groups as an expression of protest against what they believe are violations of social, ethical, or political principles.

Since at least the 5th century bce fasting has been used therapeutically. The ancient Greek physician who lived during Greece’s Classical period and is traditionally regarded as the father of medicine, Hippocrates recommended abstinence from food or drink for patients who exhibited certain symptoms of illness.

Beit Hillel is located in Israel

Northern district, Mevo’ot HaHermon council, moshav Beit Hillel

Detail of the Knesset Menorah, Jerusalem: Hillel the Elder teaching a man the meaning of the whole Torah while he stands on one foot

In almost every rabbinic book we can find mention of 9 Adar as a fast day. Though we must admit that during the last 2,000 years, not many Jews actually observed it. According to tradition, 9 Adar was the day on which initially peaceful and constructive disagreements between Beit Hillel and Beit Shammai, the two great schools of thought during the Mishnaic period, erupted into a violent conflict over 18 points of law. The 1st century Jewish scholar Shammai was the most eminent contemporary, an important figure in Judaism‘s core work of rabbinic literature, the Mishnah, and the halakhic opponent of Hillel, the highest authority among the Pharisees (predecessors to Rabbinic Judaism), founder of the House of Hillel school for Tannaïm (Sages of the Mishnah) and the founder of a dynasty of Sages who stood at the head of the Jews living in the Land of Israel until roughly the fifth century of the Common Era.

Hillel was the head of the great school, at first associated with Menahem the Essene, who might be the same Menahem the Essene as the one mentioned by Flavius Josephus in relation to King Herod, afterward with Shammai, Hillel’s peer in the teaching of Jewish Law. The family of Jesus Christ also belonged to the Essenes.

Hillel and his Torah colleague Shammai were both disciples of Shemaya and Avtalyon as well as the last of the Zugos. (The five generations of Zugos were Jose ben Joezer and Jose ben Jochanan, Joshua ben Perachiah and Nitai HaArbeli, Judah ben Tabbai and Shimon ben Shatach, Shemaya and Avtalyon, and Hillel and Shammai.) Both were fearless upholders of the Torah’s honour, standing up to Herod and brooking no mockery of Judaism.

Due to increased Roman persecution, Hillel and Shammai their disciples were unable to analyze new situations as deeply as Jewish scholars once could. As a result, the emerging scholars broke off into two schools of thought, known as Bais Shammai and Bais Hillel or Beit Hillel and Beit Shammai, and wound up disputing more than 300 cases. This beginning of large-scale argumentation (machlokes) is viewed by the Talmud as a sad diminution in Torah scholarship, which, due to the lack of clarity, had drastic results for the Jewish people.

At first the scholars personally treated each other with great love and respect. But according to various sources 9 Adar was the day on which initially peaceful and constructive disagreements between Beit Hillel and Beit Shammai, erupted into a violent conflict over 18 points of law, killing as many as 3,000 students in the fighting which should have been avoided.

We can take 9 Adar as a cautionary tale. There is a timely and pressing need to examine how the model of machloket l’shem shamayim (dispute for the sake of Heaven) between Beit Hillel, which produced 14 generations of great leaders, spanning nearly 400 years, and guiding the Jewish people through some of their most difficult times, and Beit Shammai devolved into a Jewish civil war. The lesson from that occasion is that

if we don’t work to resolve conflict peaceably and in a way in which everyone walks out stronger and the community is strengthened,

notes Nurit Bachrach, director of Mosaica: The Center for Consensual Conflict Resolution.

9Adar9 Adar, may be looked at as a day we should recognize the urgency to impart skills for constructive conflict to future Jewish leaders and therefore the Pardes Center for Judaism and Conflict Resolution has therefore chosen this day to be the international Jewish Day of Constructive Conflict (machloket l’shem shamayim), dedicated to both the study and practice of Judaism and conflict resolution.

People need to have their minds open for different thoughts. They should always try to negotiate with those of other opinions and should always remember that all people are creations of the Most High, in His image, which we should show respect.

As in any community there may be different thoughts or different schools. All created in the image of God should respect the others around them. We also should know that nobody can know everything, but God. We as fallible human beings shall have to try to work things out. God has given us time to do that. He also has given His Word and His Law, which we remembered this last weekend. That Torah or Written Law should be our guide. We should follow those instructions.

There are 18 ways you or your organization can participate in your home, workplace, synagogue, school and community, recalling the 18 matters over which the conflict erupted.

Traditional Fast Day Customs (Minhagim)

  1. Fast (ta’anit)
  2. Fast from destructive speech (ta’anit dibbur)
  3. Contribute (tzedakah)
  4. Self-reflect (teshuvah)
  5. Pray (tefilah)
  6. Cook/eat (se’udah)

 

Learn/Teach (Talmud Torah)

  1. Write
  2. Study/Read/listen
  3. Give a dvar torah (words of Torah)
  4. Teach
  5. Announce/share/tell
  6. Create

 

Be a Rodef Shalom for the Day

  1. Sign/Create a Rodef Shalom Agreement (Haskamah)
  2. Greet others as a rodef shalom
  3. Be a rodef shalom in your own conflicts
  4. Be a rodef shalom for others in conflict
  5. Be a rodef shalom by facilitating a constructive conversation
  6. Invite a professional rodef shalom

 

On this day it is also important that we do think about the reason why we received the Torah and how we should use it as a guide to construct our life. If we want to be a Child of God we should behave like one. As children of God we do have to feel like brothers and sisters of each other, respecting and loving each other, trying together to please our heavenly Father.

When we treasure our friendship with the Most High Elohim Hashem Jehovah, we should strive to please Him in every aspect of our life, including our thoughts. Preparing ourselves for the coming period, living up to Erev Pesach or 14 Nisan on Monday April the 10th in 2017 and hoping to have a joyful Pesach the next two days days, we may take the coming days to think how we can better our life and cleanse our inner soul. Fasting, or trying not to be tempted by certain things we so love, is a good way to train our self.

Everybody has to work at himself or herself to come to have “a pure heart”. This has to happen by focusing our minds on what is chaste, virtuous, and praiseworthy. (Ps. 24:3, 4; 51:6; Phil. 4:8) Granted, Jehovah makes allowances for our imperfect nature. He knows that we are prone to improper desires. But we do have to recognize that it saddens Him when we nurture wrong thoughts instead of doing all we can to reject them. (Gen. 6:5, 6) Therefore let us remember those squabbling studious Jewish followers of Hillel and his Torah colleague Shammai, and make sure that we do not fall in the trap of discussing so much smaller things that they grow above our head into something which would bring us to fight and do something against the Will of the Most High.

Going up to the days of Pesach we can take time to meditate on the Word of God plus His Works and to reflect on our way of living. It can be a good thing to avoid being tempted to eat or drink certain things we love, and to stand still by those who were going day in day out through the desert, hoping to find the promised Holy Land soon. We too still have our hopes on the Holy Land and look forward to see it coming to a time of peace. We therefore should take enough time to consider what it is what God wants and to come to accept that Jews, Christians and Muslims should all be partakers of that Holy Land. In the end all the world should know that the Kingdom of God shall be the place for all lovers of God, no matter from which school they came of from which denomination they were part of. Jerusalem shall be the capital of God’s Kingdom here on earth and there shall be place enough for all those who want to do the Will of God.

Doing the Will of God should be our aim. To do that Will of God we may only worship One True God and keep ourselves away form all sorts of heathen rites and traditions. So, if you want to fast, do it, but do it with a pure heart, not mixing with pagan traditions and keep your thoughts chaste or spotless. An important way to show our complete reliance on Jehovah is by making our fight against unclean thoughts and staying restraint a matter of prayer. When we draw close to Jehovah in prayer, he draws close to us. He generously gives us his holy spirit, thus strengthening our resolve to resist immoral thoughts and remain chaste. Let us these days remember that and let peace grow in our hearts and share it with others around us.

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Preceding articles

Happy First Day of Spring: Spring Cleaning!

From the Ramadan into the eid

Your Future

7 Ways To Become A Better Christian

Reactions against those of the other sex

Glimlach raam naar je ziel

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Additional reading

  1. People Seeking for God 3 Laws and directions
  2. Seeing or not seeing and willingness to find God
  3. Gone astray, away from God
  4. Creation of the earth and man #3 Of the Sabbath day #1 the Seventh day
  5. First mention of a solution against death 7 Human sacrifice
  6. Hanukkahgiving or Thanksgivvukah
  7. Displeasures and Actions of the Almighty God
  8. Trusting, Faith, Calling and Ascribing to Jehovah #10 Prayer #8 Condition
  9. Lenten Season and our minds and hearts the spiritual temple in which God seeks to live

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Other related articles

  1. The other way around?
  2. A Moment of Bliss
  3. Lent
  4. Day 0 – The Preparation, The Mission
  5. Catholic-Judeo Spirituality of Fasting: It’s all about squealing with joy
  6. Why Catholics Observe Lent Uniquely
  7. Daily Mass: Fasting for God. Catholic Inspiration
  8. Lent is Here and I’m Late Posting This!
  9. Five Reasons Not to Observe Lent*
  10. What Did You Give Up For Lent?
  11. Fasting For… (3.4.2017)
  12. Meditation on Lent: Good Gifts
  13. Lent – An Invitation to Joy
  14. Facebook Fast
  15. Soul Food: Lent Temptation cakes
  16. Begone, Satan!
  17. Why is Fasting So Difficult For Me?
  18. Day 3 Fasting & Abstinence: Good Read
  19. Lent Day 4: 3/4/2017
  20. Day 4 Fasting: Day of Temptations
  21. Taking the Other Seriously
  22. What Does God Really Want From Us this Lent?
  23. The Unbiblical Nature of the Lenten Season!
  24. March 2017 Fasting Log
  25. “Why Do You Fast?”
  26. My Fast is Finished but God’s Not
  27. It is well with my soul
  28. Lent Day 5: 3/5/2017
  29. Day 5 Fasting & Abstinence: Blessed Sunday
  30. Healing crisis
  31. Fasting Opens Us Up
  32. slob days
  33. Fasting Echoes Joy
  34. Lent 6 ~ Fasting to Repair and Restore
  35. Lent Day 6: 3/6/2017
  36. Day 6 Fasting: Adjustment Over
  37. 1029
  38. 100 days to Ramadan
  39. Aiming for an outstanding Ramadan The holy month of Ramadan this year is going to start at the end of May.
  40. Targets for Ramadan
  41. Daily News Egypt: Twitter reveals increase of users’ activities in Ramadan
  42. Fasting Tips for New Muslims
  43. When Is Laylatul Qadr?
  44. Praying Maghrib and Esha in Jamaat in The Last 10 Nights of Ramadaan
  45. Prolonged Du’a in Sujood and Tashahud in The Last 10 Nights of Ramadaan
  46. Doing Good Deeds in The Last 10 Blessed Days of Ramadaan
  47. Tips for The Last 10 Nights of Ramadaan
  48. “Better Than:” The Spirit of Fasting
  49. Detox

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Filed under Activism and Peace Work, Being and Feeling, Health affairs, Lifestyle, Religious affairs

Christians remaining hidden not sharing the gospel

Witness well Net knows that we are not human beings who like to come in the open easily. It says

we have a tendency to remain hidden and not share the gospel. {How pre-judging others has a serious effect on evangelism}

Some of us want to be so much like God and cast judgement on a person’s receptivity toward the message of salvation that they forget the love message.

Placing a gag over our mouth that keeps us from proclaiming His name rather than allow His Words to overflow from our hearts can be a result of pre-judging the condition of a person’s soil. {How pre-judging others has a serious effect on evangelism}

Talking about a saving relationship with ChristDave Malnes from the website Witness well tells us that we should trust his promises that our righteousness is secure because of his faithfulness – not our own; his obedience and not our own; his trustworthiness and not our own. {How evangelism rests on trust and what you possess}

He writes that

Evangelism

Evangelism (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

World religions attempt to search within to find true meaning and purpose. The object of their faith is themselves. Biblical Christians trust squarely on Jesus promises as the object of their faith. Peace and joy is not something that is self-generated, but Spirit-filled. {How evangelism rests on trust and what you possess}

Jesus-army-bus

Jesus-army-bus (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Though we do find still  too many Christians counting too much on worldly arrangements and governments. Also a lot of Christians do not know their Bible. Some of them know perhaps several phrases from the New Testament, but do not see the whole picture.

The same about one of the tasks Jesus has given and as such has to be one of the many works of faith we do have to do. We do have to become one in Christ, like Christ is one with his heavenly Father. In case we would think like trinitarians, that would mean they have to become like God and some of them consider themselves to be like Christ, to be God.

The Elohim, who has sent His only begotten son to this world, commissions believers in Christ to sow the seeds of the gospel and to become humble like Jesus humbled himself. By embracing this role, Christians find joy and peace in encouraging and equipping others with the faith in Christ and in Only One true God (the heavenly Father of Jesus).

When we call ourselves Christian we should show others that we are willing to become like Christ and like him have faithfully responded God’s call to sow the seeds of the gospel and trusting God His promise that the harvest may be plentiful.

English: 4 days of Evangelism Training in Sout...

4 days of Evangelism Training in Southern California provided by LivingWaters Ministry. Obeying the great commission of Jesus Christ. “Go into all the world and preach the Gospel to everyone” Mark 16:15 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Full enjoyment and trust we should bear the Good News in our mind and be of full courage to share the message of encouragement and uplifted spirit of rejoicing being presented to us by the acts of the apostles. Their work must have been an amazing experience, but is not finished yet. We do have to continue the work of the apostles and those first Christians.

Followers of Christ should be giving themselves totally to Jesus, willing to become in Christ Jesus, a part of a bigger picture as partakers of the Body of Christ, being those who have been set apart as God’s children through God’s grace.

It is by grace, God’s undeserved love that makes us Christians. No wonder we can rejoice through any circumstance that comes our way when we can be assured of our status before God, not by what we have done or what we are doing, but what God has already done for us. {An appropriate benediction}

We should be so tankful for Jesus proving to us that man is able to put his own will aside for doing God’s Will, and giving himself for atonement, paying the ransom prize for the sins we did.

For this liberation we can have joy which comes from trusting God’s promises that we will receive liberation from the curse of the Fall and that Jesus restored the relationship between God and man and has received authority to be the mediator between God and man and the judge at the end times, where it is him who shall decide who shall be able to enter the Kingdom of God.

An evangelist fully trusts God’s promises associated with being His messenger. Sharing the message of the gospel is not about us, but proclaiming the power of the message. In Christ, we conquer fear, worry, and guilt. By remaining in Christ, we bear fruits of the Spirit that reflects the light of Christ and introduces His presence to the world. {How evangelism rests on trust and what you possess}

The Bible teaches that God “gave” to certain people the gift of evangelism to build up the church (Eph. 4:11). We marvel and rejoice at these gifts as one who has the gift of music. Most believers like myself do not have the gift of evangelism, but we are not excused from the work of evangelism (2 Tim. 4:5). God commissions all believers to go, teach, and baptize (Matthew 28:19-20). {Twelve Things Successful Evangelists Do}

Dave Malnes believes these are twelve things that successful evangelists do:

Love Successful evangelists speak the truth that is prompted by love and concern for the soul.

Joy Evangelists reflect the gospel light in their own lives that attracts unbelievers.

Peace   Evangelists find their identity in Christ that washes away guilt.

Patience Evangelists understands the fruit of patience ripens into persistence by keeping God’s timetable and not our own.

Kindness Evangelists sacrifice acts of kindness and generosity with no strings attached.

Self-control Evangelists resist the need to win the argument and focus on winning the soul.

Goodness Evangelists consistently extend grace to those who are least deserving.

Gentleness Evangelists express humility and give all credit and glory to God.

Pray continually Evangelists give thanks in all circumstances and reflects this pattern in an ongoing prayer life.

Perseverance Evangelists never, never, never give up.

Faithfulness Evangelists rely on God’s faithfulness to renew their own faithfulness by regularly reading, studying, and praying over God’s Word. {Twelve Things Successful Evangelists Do}

We have to set our mind on Christ Jesus and nurture our and others their need for a goal, a focus, instructions, and a hero. When we are afraid to tell others about our faith we do need to conquer our fear with our faith. We also should remember that “Everything God has made is an assignment”. In the knowledge that our future is the seed for the one we chose to honour we should be pleased, showing our joy in the Messiah. Our gratitude should be a seed for more. and we should not be afraid to sow seed wrapped with expectation and faith in the harvest.

When having become a Christian we have come into a covenant with Jesus that gives purpose and then we should follow his rules and given tasks, sowing our seed for a desired harvest.

Oxbow sunset #2

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Preceding

Witnessing because we love

Is being a humanitarian enough to convey the full love of Christ?

Preaching Christ Is Not Enough

A Christian has to have eyes and ears and a tongue to use in good ways

Beautiful feet of those who announce the good news

An uncovering book to explore

Preaching by example

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Additional reading

  1. A question to be posed
  2. Creator and Blogger God 2 Image and likeness
  3. Written down in God’s Name for righteousness
  4. A way to look for Christ, the Bible, Word of God
  5. The Right One to follow and to worship
  6. The Almighty Lord God of gods King above all gods
  7. Glory of only One God Who gives His Word
  8. Necessary to be known all over the earth
  9. Appointed to be read
  10. Focussing on oneness with Jesus like Jesus is one with God
  11. Not able to make contact with God because to busy
  12. Salvation, trust and action in Jesus #3 as a Christian
  13. Atonement and the race been bought
  14. Atonement And Fellowship 1/8
  15. Atonement And Fellowship 2/8
  16. Atonement And Fellowship 3/8
  17. Atonement And Fellowship 4/8
  18. Atonement And Fellowship 5/8
  19. Atonement And Fellowship 6/8
  20. Atonement And Fellowship 7/8
  21. Atonement And Fellowship 8/8
  22. The manager and Word of God
  23. The Metaphorical language of the Bible
  24. Scripture alone Sola Scriptora
  25. Let us become nothing, and Christ everything
  26. Be an Encourager
  27. Foundation for a good relationship with God
  28. Apple of Gods eye
  29. A “seed” for the blessing of all mankind would come through the family of Abraham
  30. Our relationship with God, Jesus and eachother
  31. Sow and harvests in the garden of your heart
  32. Bearing fruit
  33. Rejoicing in the day
  34. She who sows thistles will reap prickles
  35. You cannot change anything in your life with intention alone
  36. Picking Stones
  37. The Big Conversation
  38. John 4 according to the Scriptures

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Further reading

  1. Simple John
  2. Seeds that you plant
  3. With the Patience of a Saint
  4. 7 Laws to Create Uncommon Success
  5. The Good Gardener
  6. Others before myself
  7. Leviticus 2:8-16: The First-Fruits Offering
  8. A Spiritual Harvest
  9. Sharpen Your Blade!
  10. The Secret to Successful Gardening
  11. Your Mind is the Garden
  12. No Soup For You!
  13. Who is Going to Tell Them?
  14. Dying Field
  15. IF: I listen, can I hear You?

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Beautiful feet of those who announce the good news

Rom 10:13-15 MKJV  For everyone, “whoever shall call on the name of the Lord will be saved.”  (14)  How then shall they call on Him in whom they have not believed? And how shall they believe in Him of whom they have not heard? And how shall they hear without preaching?  (15)  And how shall they preach unless they are sent? As it is written, “How beautiful are the feet of those who preach the gospel of peace and bring glad tidings of good things!”

For they who do not believe should come to hear and should receive an opportunity to get to know the grace given to all people. People can only call on the Name of God when they do believe. Only then when we call onto God’s Name, Jehovah, shall we be saved. This is a condition to become saved which too many do forget. Also they who do not believe the Gospel as the record which God has given of his Son are missing a lot, and those who do believe are responsible for that, when they do not make the effort of preaching. But those who go out into the world to tell the Good News are recognised as people doing beautiful work, because how can others hear without preaching? Naturally there can only be preached rightly by those who believe and by those who are sent, showing others their faith and gladly willing to share the Good News they themselves heard and got convinced of.

The apostle turns from the responsibility of the seeker after salvation to emphasize the role that believers are intended to have in God’s plan for preaching the gospel. Calling on the Lord is meaningless apart from some assurance that He is worthy of confidence and trust, that He has something to offer that guilty sinners need. Calling on Him and trust in Him are two sides of the same coin. The verse suggests that calling on the Lord continues to be a mark of the believer, not simply the first step in the direction of establishing relationship to him.

1Co 1:2 MKJV  to the church of God which is in Corinth, to those who are sanctified in Christ Jesus, called out with all those in every place who call on the name of Jesus Christ our Lord, both theirs and ours.

One must hear the gospel before a person can be expected either to receive it or reject it. Without people preaching there can be no hearing. Without witnessing there can be no thought or consideration about what could be true or not, or people would not get to know. Certain King James Versions have “without a preacher” – which may be misleading, in that it implies (or it may be inferred there-from) that there is a special office of preacher. This is of course not the case at all: all God’s children are (or should be) preachers!

People do need to hear about Jesus, the son of God. They should come to know what that Nazarene man has done and who his heavenly Father is and for what that eternal Spirit is so important for mankind. Those who do believe should know the importance of their knowledge and out of love for the others they should want others to know that truth as well. When a person believes unto righteousness with the heart he shall be glad to be able to confess with with the mouth unto salvation not being put to shame knowing that when he calls on the name of the Lord shall be saved.

Saint Peter preaching the Gospel in the Catacombs

Saint Peter preaching the Gospel in the Catacombs (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The apostle Paul rightly observes that it all goes back to the preaching of the gospel, and preachers, those who profess the Word of God, must be sent – both by God and the Christian community at large. It does not have to be special university people, but men and women willing to share the Gospel in Jesus’ name. God’s “normal” way of bringing people to Jesus Christ is through the preaching of the gospel, which has to happen through faithful people who follow the example of Christ Jesus and do what he had demanded his disciples.

God’s cursing or blessing is upon us, also according to our faithfulness in preaching the Word. God has committed unto us, in our ministry, the word of His reconciliation.

2Co 5:17-21 KJV  Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.  (18)  And all things are of God, who hath reconciled us to himself by Jesus Christ, and hath given to us the ministry of reconciliation;  (19)  To wit, that God was in Christ, reconciling the world unto himself, not imputing their trespasses unto them; and hath committed unto us the word of reconciliation.  (20)  Now then we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God did beseech you by us: we pray you in Christ’s stead, be ye reconciled to God.  (21)  For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him.

When we choose to become baptised in the name of Jesus we wanted to become in Messiah reborn, becoming a new creation. From then onwards our shyness in the world should be gone having the old things having passed away. Shyness refers to passivity, emotional arousal, and excessive self-focus in the presence of other people ( Jones, Cheek, and Briggs 1986). It also frequently involves negative self-evaluations, social avoidance, and withdrawal. (International Encyclopedia of Marriage and Family, 2003). Being reborn we have received a new soul (being) not focusing as such on the self, but on the totality of union in Christ. Arousal and heightened self-consciousness in response to social threat can be put aside when one is confirmed about the truth and its value. The experiences of shyness are often sufficiently unpleasant to lead to withdrawal from or avoidance of many social situations, but they also compound the distress of shyness by distracting from skilled and self-confident social interactions. When a person his faith sits deep in him it will give him enough assurance to conquer that shyness to witness for Christ Jesus and for his heavenly Father, the only One God.

Facing all those new things which are from God we want to share with others that in Jesus Christ the Messiah Jehovah God was reconciling the world to Himself, not counting their trespasses against them; and He has entrusted the message of reconciliation to us.  We are by the baptism in spirit taken away from the doubt and fear from man and therefore should want to be ambassadors for Messiah, as though God were making His appeal through us.

The apostles and members of the first communities begged the community members on behalf of Messiah, to be reconciled to God and to share the Good News with others.  Though it was not easy, because many had seen what had happened to Christ Jesus, and knew that there were fierce opponents of the teachings of this master teacher. It was the Most High Almighty Elohim Who made the Sent One who knew no sin to become a sin offering on our behalf, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God. By his offering we are bought and are now facing freedom, if we want. It is not by deeds of righteousness which we had done ourselves, but because of God His mercy. It is by the blessing of Jesus his offering that we can become saved through the mikveh of rebirth and renewing of the Ruach ha-Kodesh,  whom Jehovah abundantly poured out on us through Messiah Jeshua our Saviour, so that being set right by his grace, we might become heirs with the confident hope of eternal life!

Tit 3:5-7 MKJV  not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to His mercy He saved us, through the washing of regeneration and renewal of the Holy Spirit,  (6)  whom He poured out on us abundantly through Jesus Christ our Savior,  (7)  that being justified by His grace, we should become heirs according to the hope of eternal life.

The Messiah or Christ was a man who did not want to do his own will but preferred to do only the will of his heavenly Father. He love God’s ecclesia and gave himself for it; that he might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the word. (Ephesians 5:25-26). Like Jesus took care that the dirt of the earth was washed away by the Word of God we also should where we come try to wash away the dirt of this contemporary world.

At baptism the believer becomes a part of Christ’s new “creation” (Ephesians 2:10;  4:23-24; Collosians 3:10). That new creation is so incredible and presents such a magic future we do not want to keep it for ourselves alone. Real believers in Christ do want to become like Christ sharers of the Good News. Being washed… sanctified, we are prepared to do the work for God. It is the will to get to know the Word of God better which should bring us to read it more and to share it with others. It is not be going to a special college reading lots of human writings and philosophies that we shall get more knowledge to bring people to God. God has given everything we need in His Word. All is there in that Book of books, the Bible, God His infallible Word which says all.

Without the faith in Jesus we shall not be able to succeed. We need to have faith in Jesus so that we can call on Jesus. And we need to call on Jesus because calling on Jesus, searching for Jesus, crying out for Jesus is what brings us salvation. Through calling on Jesus, we are saved.
So why do we preach?
So that we may be saved.

We need to be saved from our own captivity. We all need to be set free from something that may keep us away from our loving heavenly Father, the Divine Creator.

The world has to know what God provided. they should come to know that there is a possibility of real peace. But they also should get to know that it will be God Who rules.

Isa 52:7-10 MKJV  How beautiful on the mountains are the feet of him who brings good tidings, making peace heard; who brings good news, making salvation heard; who says to Zion, Your God reigns!  (8)  The voice of Your watchmen shall lift up! They lift up the voice together; they sing aloud. For they shall see eye to eye, when Jehovah shall bring again Zion.  (9)  Break out, sing together, waste places of Jerusalem; for Jehovah has comforted His people; He has redeemed Jerusalem.  (10)  Jehovah has bared His holy arm in the eyes of all the nations; and all the ends of the earth shall see the salvation of our God.

As in the time before Christ Jesus it was nice to see the messengers of God bringing good tidings. Now it is our time to bring such good tidings. We have hear them and we should be convinced of the importance of them.

English: 4 days of Evangelism Training in Sout...

4 days of Evangelism Training in Southern California provided by LivingWaters Ministry. Obeying the great commission of Jesus Christ. “Go into all the world and preach the Gospel to everyone” Mark 16:15 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The Good Tidings publishes peace and brings confirmation about the sent one from God, who is the Messiah and fulfilled his duties here on earth. God reigns and has given Jeshua the authority to prepare His Kingdom and to reign on earth. We are looking for that Kingdom of God and belief that it is a reality which can be there for much more people than it is at the moment. Therefore we should be willing to show the way to Jerusalem, the physical but even more the spiritual Jerusalem. More and more we can see how the Plan of God gets shape and how we come closer to the execution of that Plan.

The freedom that awaits us has to be spoken off. But first we need to liberate us from our own weaknesses, bad things we are burdened with. We must see that we can make ourselves free from the bad things of this world first. There  may be things which are holding us captive. There  may be many things holding onto us.

Andy Burns, who believes the goal of life is to get so close to that light that we are breathing in the light and exhaling it out into the world, writes:

Maybe you’re dealing with a very real kind of captivity like addiction. Maybe you have an addiction to a physical substance-alcohol, drugs, those kinds of things-or maybe you’re addicted to something more abstract-your work, money, maybe you’re addicted to other people’s approval of you. And this addiction controls when you wake up, when you go to sleep, when you eat, where you work, where you go after work, how hard you work. You’re not free.

Or maybe you deal with an intensely personal problem like low self-esteem or self-doubt or depression. And maybe this controls you in ways that surprise you-you want a certain job but you don’t believe you can do it. You want to speak up but you don’t believe in yourself in enough to find the words. You want to get to know someone, but you don’t believe they could ever like you. You’re not free.

Or maybe you deal with some pain in your past. Maybe you’ve been seriously hurt-either physically or emotionally by their words or both. Maybe it was a parent, a friend, a spouse, a child. And maybe this old would is holding you captive, keeping you from enjoying life, making you avoid certain situations and people. You’re not free.

See, I think all need to be freed from something. We all need freedom and transformation in our lives. And according to Paul in our passage, this is the message that preachers are entrusted with. This is the reason we preach here. Preachers preach so that people can hear about Jesus. People need to hear about Jesus so that we may have faith in Jesus. People need to have faith in Jesus so that they can call on Jesus. And people need to call on Jesus so that we may be set free by the Gospel of Jesus Christ. This is the message that we proclaim every week. This is what we all need to hear and what we all need to be reminded of, week in and week out. You can be free in Jesus Christ. {Stuff My Church Does I: Preaching}

People do have to hear about Jesus and each believer in Christ should take care of that. We do have to go out into the world and tell about the marvellous gift we received. We do have to invite others to share with us the grace which has been given to us.

What would it look like if we invited others here to hear the freedom of God proclaimed in the Word of God? What would it look like if we all brought this Word out into our community and saw it as our job to proclaim this freedom that everyone needs to those around us? Just think of the transformation that would happen. I think it would look pretty amazing. {Stuff My Church Does I: Preaching}

Let us all joining and be workers for the Lord, going into all the world and preaching the Gospel to everyone. (Mark 16:15 )

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Preceding articles:

A Christian has to have eyes and ears and a tongue to use in good ways

Your position about materialistic desires having conquered the world

Looking for a shepherd for the sheep and goats

When believing in God’s existence and His son, possessing a divine legislation

Not making yourselves abominable

Where are the female writers

Perishable non theologians daring to go out to preach

Daring to speak in multicultural environment

Preaching by example

What Should I Preach ?

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Additional reading:

  1. Where is the edge
  2. Remember the day
  3. Gospel = Good tidings, good news, a good message
  4. Counterfeit Gospels
  5. Seeing or not seeing and willingness to find God
  6. Not bounded by labels but liberated in Christ
  7. How long to wait before bringing religiousness and spirituality in practice
  8. Jehovah steep rock and fortress, source of insight
  9. Hearing words to accept
  10. Atonement And Fellowship 2/8
  11. Missional hermeneutics 4/5
  12. Missional hermeneutics 5/5
  13. The Right One to follow and to worship
  14. Many forgot how Christ should be our anchor and our focus
  15. Hope by faith and free gift
  16. Showing by the scriptures that …
  17. Salvation, trust and action in Jesus #3 as a Christian
  18. Proclaiming shalom, bringing good news of good things, announcing salvation
  19. Establish your hearts blameless in holiness
  20. Looking for True Spirituality 7 Preaching of the Good News
  21. Looking for True Spirituality 8 Measuring Up
  22. Breathing to teach
  23. 2013 Lifestyle, religiously and spiritually
  24. Belgian Christadelphians 2013 & 2014 in review
  25. Stepping Toes 2014 in review
  26. Looking on what is going on and not being of it
  27. A prophet to restore
  28. Imitate prophets and Paul
  29. Oratory Style
  30. Counting sands and stars
  31. Which Christians Actually Evangelize
  32. Learn how to go out into the world and proclaim the Good News of the coming Kingdom
  33. Bringing Good News into the world
  34. Intentions of an Ecclesia
  35. Holland Week of billing
  36. Faith and trial
  37. Faith a commitment to the promises of Christ and to to the demands of Christ
  38. How should we preach?
  39. The Rapture Wars
  40. Not many coming out with their community name
  41. Writers needed to preach to non-believers
  42. Jehovah can make him stand
  43. Our openness to being approachable
  44. Different approach in organisation of services #3
  45. Glory of God appearing in our character
  46. A Society pleading poverty
  47. Good or bad preacher
  48. Trusting, Faith, Calling and Ascribing to Jehovah #9 Prayer #7 Reason to pray
  49. How is it that Christ pleased God so perfectly?
  50. Rebirth and belonging to a church
  51. Of the many books Only the Bible can transform
  52. Character transformed by the influence of our fellowships

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Also of interest

20 Comments

Filed under Activism and Peace Work, Religious affairs, Spiritual affairs

Where are the female writers

When research shows that women, who are more than half of the population, write only a third of the stories, how does it come that not more women are taking up the pen and sharing their thoughts?

"Bon Ton Burlesquers - 365 days ahead of ...

“Bon Ton Burlesquers – 365 days ahead of them all.” Poster of U.S. burlesque show, 1898, showing a woman in outfit with low neckline and short skirts holding a number of upper-class men “On the string”. Color lithograph (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Did women still not become confident enough to have their voice sounding in the air? Or is the human world still being influenced by macho male world?

Media tells us our roles in society — it tells us who we are and what we can be.

The Women’s Media Center (WMC) released its yearly report on the status of women in U.S. media on July the 15th. This new report shows us who people think matters and what is important to media — and clearly, as of right now, for the American citizen it is not women.

Taken together, the 49 studies are a snapshot of women in media platforms as diverse as news, literature, broadcast, film, television, radio, online, tech, gaming, and social media.

In evening broadcast news, women are on-camera 32% of the time; in print news, women report 37% of the stories; on the Internet, women write 42% of the news; and on the wires, women garner only 38% of the bylines.

“We face the same issue here,” Women in Media (www.womeninmedia.net) National Patron Caroline Jones said. “While more than half of the graduates in our sector are women, women hold around 7% of management roles. That’s got to change.” {Media executives to tackle gender equality in Women in Media panel}

How Men Dominate The US Media Landscape

In my ecclesia and for my websites I also ask the female part of our society to contribute to our society, but it seems that they, like human male, keep quiet.

We may perhaps know that men do less than they ought (unless they do all that they can), but what about women?

The list of notable female writers may be huge and many ladies could get me carried away. It were not only story tellers or historicist but also article writers who got me tantalised.

Also looking at several followers of my different sites I am pleased to find several female writers and photographers who offer very nice articles or beautiful series of visual postings. Pity none of them offered them yet to join us and use the opportunity to get more readers to know them and to bring them also to their nice articles.

If you are writing on the net, why would you not share some of your ideas here and share some readings you encountered, when scrolling the many articles available on the net. It would be strange if you would not be able to find at least one article in a year worth sharing with others.  In case that would be the case, not able to find more interesting articles on the net, that others also should read, it would mean that too much rubbish is presented and that by the overload serious articles do not find a chance to be noticed.

When I see on social media, like Facebook and on Youtube what gets most interest and most likes, it either says a lot of the present generation and gives an impression that non-serious and shocking material gets most interest by the present viewers.

Why not distance us form all that under-the-belt material and from the voyeuristic articles, focusing on things which are important for our society?

I am perhaps very conservative and have some old fashioned ideas and gender role ideas, but that does not mean that people can not be conform or of total different vision and would not able to present opposites over here. the nicest thing would be when different visions can stand next to each other (in peace).

I may think women should be best at presenting articles about the female role in our society, and could bring articles on the household but also on women at work or the role of women in our community or in our ecclesia or church. but they also could bring ideas about living and arranging our living quarters, sharing architectural and interior design ideas.

Naturally also men could write articles about those subjects, and they are invited too.

I am still waiting for writers to present themselves? Please when you do feel called do not hesitate, but contact me straight ahead.

I welcome any interested serious writer, who is willing to share his thoughts and interesting thoughts he or she finds on the net.

Do not wait until tomorrow but act today.

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  • Socialize Your Content Marketing Initiatives (socialnomics.net)
    Whether you write your own content, hire someone to do it for you or are a guest blogger for someone else, writing the content is actually only a piece of the pie.
    An important part of writing content is creating shareable material. Once it’s live, the sharing starts.

    And, yes, you want others to share it straight from the site, but it’s also a smart strategy for you to work on that sharing and promotion as well. Social media, among other strategies, will play a big role in this.
    +
    If people like your content, they’ll want to see more. In your bio, you can include your social media sites and links to other pieces related to the one you’re sharing. Be careful not to link to too much; that can be overwhelming.

     

  • Top 4 Tips for Promoting Your Small Business On Social Media (hiscox.com)
    Most small business owners know by now that they need to have a presence on social media. You’ve probably set up a fan page on Facebook for your business, and you probably have a Twitter account. You may have a LinkedIn account, a Google+ page and even a YouTube channel. Those are great first steps toward promoting your business. Now you have to feed the beast.
    +
    Post a ‘teaser’ or a promotion on each network, than include a link to your most recent blog post. If you have a special offer or promotion, describe it in the blog post as well as the social media posts, in case people come to your blog in some other way.
    +
    Keep the quality of your content to a high standard. You’ll find that consumers are looking for different types of content like whitepapers and infographics. Make sure it’s useful and concise. Content that feature listicles such as our “10 Important Personal Characteristics of an Entrepreneur” piece are a great start. Social media has shortened our attention spans, so you need to grab the reader’s attention and hold it by providing information they can use. Don’t try to extend the length of your posts with ‘fluff’ – you’ll lose your audience.
  • 4 Alternative Social Media Platforms Every Marketer Should Be Using (thesuccess4life.com)
    you can build long-term relationship with your targeted audience .
    +
    9 Simple Social Media Tips Even Amateurs Can Follow
    The core of a great social media page is not the number of followers, nor the engagement rate. It is all about the contents you share. Quality contents are integral part of social media to generate followers, and improve engagement. People tend to share topics that they find useful, so always provide them with these types of contents. But, keep in mind that you should not limit your updates to your website’s contents, you should also share useful posts from other websites.
  • Associate Yourself with Strong Social Media Initiatives (socialnomics.net)
    You can share news about your association, post pictures of association events, and keep followers updated on everything your association represents.
  • Maddie’s Must Reads for July – Social Media Edition (socialfish.org)
  • Media executives to tackle gender equality in Women in Media panel (mumbrella.com.au)
    The current numbers are bleak and going nowhere fast. And although there is a real and clear business imperative for diversity at the top of business in this country and globally — with compelling statistics to match, we can’t wait and hope for it to be worked out by those whose current self interests are tied to things remaining more or less the same. Quotas are the only certain pathway to gender equity.
  • How Men Dominate The U.S. Media Landscape [Infographic] (forbes.com)
  • Hot 97’s TT Torrez Talks Making It in The Radio Industry (madamenoire.com)
  • Literary Gaps: The Classic Books We Overlook (readerswritersjournal.com)
  • 11 Books By Women That Reached Cult Status (stylecaster.com)
    For some, the idea of reaching for a summertime book means frivolous beachside reading material. But this year, instead of letting the time pass by with fluffy chick lit, why not delve deep into the classic stories by women writers that have made it to cult status?

6 Comments

Filed under Aankondiging & Introductie, Announcement, Cultural affairs

An uncovering book to explore

Now Summer has come to us we have more time to sit outdoors and relax. Ideal time to take up the Book of books to read in it. We have the whole of God’s Word to read and inspire us whenever we feel like doing so. Though many people like to postpone Bible reading. Some are also afraid to be confronted with the words which they might find inside. To prorogue reading the Bible shall keep a lot of wisdom from them. Holding off Bible reading will withhold us from useful help. Protracting a confrontation with the Word of God shall only make it more difficult for the person to find a satisfying life which shall be righteous in the eyes of the Most High Divine Creator.

"WHICH BOOK, HOLY BIBLE" - NARA - 516150

“Which Book, Holy Bible” – NARA – 516150 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

To understand past and evolution to the future, our position in life, our way to follow, we could use that what is brought to us in that old library of 66 books.

Many want others to believe that it is

dang hard. {J.S. Parks Five Primers On How To Study The Bible}

but it does not have to be so hard as they say. When you start with the right open mind and good attitude you should be able to trace back those old sayings and enjoy the different genres of literature the Bible presents. Like any book we come to read we do not have to expect to see clear (in everything) straight ahead. We do need time to reflect and to let the material come into our mind, having it come to grow, like a mustard seed.

Though those writings may be written long ago for people who lived ages ago, the words still are very useful and edifying for today. Whatever mood we are in those words can enlighten us and change our mood for the better. When we are willing to have those words come unto us they shall do.

Every time you open the Bible, believe that God has something for you. Believe it. At every moment, good and bad, up or down, in all seasons, the Bible will speak.  The Holy Spirit convicts you of all truth. Be ready for it to push against you, to disagree with you, to challenge what you always thought was true. The Word of God is a sword that will cut you to your soul, exposing all. {J.S. Parks Five Primers On How To Study The Bible}

The Bible is much more than just the message of Jesus. It is the message of God. Some might want you to believe that as an unbeliever you are nothing with the Bible. They say, like J.S.Park, that it is crazy to those without Jesus, and want us to believe that it only can be the saving truth to believers. but the Biblical message is a message of hope, peace and message of salvation for all.

We should know that all Scripture is breathed out of God, useful for everybody and for everything we do and who we are. No matter if you believe or to have faith, confidence, or trust in this or that or do not believe in this or that or trust what one has heard. Be sure not everything what so called believers belief is true. Many, not to say the majority in Christendom belief nonbilical things. The ones who try to keep to the Bible in Christianity are often fought against and shunned by so called ‘Christians‘. Therefore it is not bad to come to see what is really written in that book of books.

To come to a real good exploration of the Bible you should start with a fully open mind, undone from the traditional human doctrines and willing to read what is really written there on those uncovering pages.

Lots of people want to get as much gain as possible from everything what comes into their hands. They should know that we are not here to  hoard treasures down here where it gets eaten by moths and corroded by rust or—worse!—stolen by burglars. We are better to find more useful treasures by reading in the Bible.  From those words we can learn a lot and build up a stronger character. It shall also learn us how to stockpile treasures in heaven, where it’s safe from moth and rust and burglars.

Your eyes are windows into your body and you have to use them to see into yourself. The Bible is your looking glass and your best tool to get to know yourself and those around you. Perhaps you will not see it at first, but given time you will come to see. If you open your eyes wide in wonder and belief, your body fills up with light. If you live squinty-eyed in greed and distrust, your body is a dank cellar. If you pull the blinds on your windows, what a dark life you will have! Pulling up the blinds are the shutters you will come step by step to more insight and closer to the truth. You also shall start feeling how higher forces will come to guide you.

This doesn’t mean you’ll “feel something” every time you read Scripture. But meditate on even a tiny scrap of a verse and let it sit. The Bible has the very words of God pouring out His heart for you. He is big, but by His Word, He is so close. Hear it as a friend speaking, as a leader leading. Be encouraged and convicted. {J.S. Parks Five Primers On How To Study The Bible}

Quadruple combination opened to the Book of Is...

Quadruple combination opened to the Book of Isaiah – note the cross references between Biblical and Latter-day Saint scripture in the footnotes (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Those writings from the old times are still of use for us. It are the Words from God and from people God wanted us to hear their voices. Words from good and bad people are written down so that we can learn from what went right and what went wrong. They are words which we should embrace and believe. They do come from the One who brought Jesus to life when the conditions were equally hopeless as in our times. (Romans 4:23-24)  Even if it was written in Scripture long ago, you can be sure it’s written for us. God wants the combination of his steady, constant calling and warm, personal counsel in Scripture to come to characterize us, keeping us alert for whatever he will do next. (Romans 15:4)

In the knowledge that  every part of Scripture is God-breathed and useful one way or another — showing us truth, exposing our rebellion, correcting our mistakes, training us to live God’s way, it is a major manual to guide us through life in easy and in difficult times. Knowing also that some very difficult times soon may arrive, we are better to prepare ourselves for that great war which shall come over humankind. A forewarned is forearmed.

Therefore this Summer do not hesitate to take up the Bible and let yourself be carried away by its stories. Through the Word you may be put together and shaped up for the tasks God has for you. (2 Timothy 3:16-17)

We couldn’t be more sure of what we saw and heard — God’s glory, God’s voice. The prophetic Word was confirmed to the apostles who took care like the other men of God that the messengers of God their words would be told to the next generations. We do well to keep focusing on those precious words. When you are feeling blue or are not happy, feeling tired, or when you feel pleased with what you have, come to see the one light you have in a dark time as you wait for daybreak and the rising of the Morning Star in your hearts. The main thing to keep in mind here is that no prophecy of Scripture is a matter of private opinion. And why? Because it’s not something concocted in the human heart. Prophecy resulted when the Holy Spirit prompted men and women to speak God’s Word. (2 Peter 1:19-21)

When reading it we should leave the human words, which tried us to belief certain things, for what they are, and go deeper in to study what is really written in the Bible.  We are convinced when you try to read the Bible, listening to the words like they are written there, it is not such a difficult book at all.

Good luck with it.

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Preceding articles:

Summerholiday season time to read the Bible

Holiday making and dreaming

Home-stayers and their to do lis

Genre – Playing by the Rules

The Need to Understand Genre

A Dutch version / Een Nederlandse versie: Zomertijd ideaal op met Bijbellezing aan te vangen

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Additional reading:

  1. Catholicism, Anabaptism and Crisis of Christianity
  2. A question to be posed
  3. A way to look for Christ, the Bible, Word of God
  4. Youth has difficulty Bible Reading
  5. Some one or something to fear #3 Cases, folks and outing
  6. The Right One to follow and to worship
  7. People Seeking for God 1 Looking for answers
  8. People Seeking for God 2 Human interpretations
  9. People Seeking for God 3 Laws and directions
  10. People Seeking for God 6 Strategy
  11. Not able to make contact with God because to busy
  12. The truth is very plain to see and God can be clearly seen
  13. Relapse plan
  14. Being Religious and Spiritual 6 Romantici, utopists and transcendentalists
  15. Being Religious and Spiritual 7 Transcendence to become one
  16. Being Religious and Spiritual 8 Spiritual, Mystic and not or well religious
  17. Engagement in an actual two-way conversation with your deities
  18. Creator and Blogger God 10 A Blog of a Book 4 Listening to the Blogger
  19. Challenging claim 4 Inspired by God 3 Self-consistent Word of God
  20. Statutes given unto us
  21. Written down in God’s Name for righteousness
  22. Unread bestseller
  23. Do Christians need to read the Old Testament
  24. We should use the Bible every day
  25. Daily Spiritual Food To prepare ourselves for the Kingdom of God
  26. Daily portion of heavenly food
  27. Feed Your Faith Daily
  28. The importance of Reading the Scriptures
  29. Necessity of a revelation of creation 9 Searching the Scriptures
  30. Necessity of a revelation of creation 10 Instructions for insight and wisdom
  31. The Almighty Lord God of gods King above all gods
  32. God who knows the heart
  33. Glory of only One God Who gives His Word
  34. Necessary to be known all over the earth
  35. Hearing words to accept
  36. Writers needed to preach to non-believers
  37. Perishable non theologians daring to go out to preach
  38. Appointed to be read
  39. Bric-a-brac of the Bible
  40. Absolute Basics to Reading the Bible
  41. How to Choose a Bible for Preaching
  42. The Third Word: Scripture twisting is blasphemy
  43. Interpreting the Scriptures (Part 5)
  44. The holy spirit will bring back to your minds all the things told
  45. Building up the spirit of the soul
  46. Be an Encourager
  47. God’s never-ending stream of much-needed mercies
  48. Displeasure of יהוה , Jehovah the God of gods, and His wrath against all the gentiles their divisions
  49. Believing in the send one and understanding that one does not live by bread alone
  50. Salvation, trust and action in Jesus #3 as a Christian
  51. The manager and Word of God
  52. Accuracy, Word-for-Word Translation Preferred by most Bible Readers
  53. The Metaphorical language of the Bible
  54. Scripture alone Sola Scriptora

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12 Comments

Filed under Religious affairs

Your position about materialistic desires having conquered the world

In the previous articles we have spoken about the world clinching to material wealth like velcrostrips hoping to have all luck in the world.

The materialistic desires have conquered the world. Those who know were they come from and Who they should honour do know they should not give their love to material things.

15 Do not love either the world or the things in the world.+ If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him;+ 16 because everything in the world—the desire of the flesh+ and the desire of the eyes+ and the showy display of one’s means of life*—does not originate with the Father, but originates with the world. (1 John 2:15, 16)

In the articles we also could see how many love to be moulded by this system of things. (Romans 12:2) The worldly desires have run high in our society, but at other times people also fell for those distractions and attractions.

It Conquered the World

It Conquered the World (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The love of money or the desire to amass riches and possess material things can corrupt the heart, leading a Christian to do things that go against God’s will. A few have become dishonest at work, have cheated others, or have even stolen money or objects that do not belong to them.

Lots of people do have many things of which they want to boast of is this. Lots of people also do think man is full of wisdom and that they have ‘most’ wisdom’. They do not want to look into their conscience which might bear witness. They are full of fleshly wisdom.

Material pursuits may bring on anxiety. For example, some complicate their lives by living beyond their means. Others have been enticed by get-rich-quick schemes and risky financial investments. For others, secular education as a means to attain financial success becomes a snare. The Bible warns: “Those who are determined to be rich fall into temptation and a snare and many senseless and hurtful desires, which plunge men into destruction and ruin.”

However, those who are determined to be rich fall into temptation+ and a snare and many senseless and hurtful desires,+ which plunge men into destruction and ruin.+ 10 For the love+ of money is a root+ of all sorts of injurious things,*+ and by reaching out for this love some have been led astray from the faith and have stabbed themselves all over with many pains.+ (1 Timothy 6:9, 10).

Essential to not being drawn into a materialistic way of life is cultivating the ability to distinguish between right and wrong when making decisions. This ability is developed by regularly partaking of ‘solid spiritual food belonging to mature people’ and by ‘having our perceptive powers trained through use.’ (Hebrews 5:13, 14) Making sure “of the more important things” when setting priorities will also safeguard us from making wrong choices.

And this is what I continue praying, that YOUR love may abound+ yet more and more with accurate knowledge*+ and full discernment;*+ 10 that YOU may make sure of the more important things,+ so that YOU may be flawless+ and not be stumbling+ others up to the day of Christ, 11 and may be filled with righteous fruit,+ which is through Jesus Christ, to God’s glory and praise.+ (Philippians 1:9,10,11).

A materialistic life-style can blind us, leaving little or no time for spiritual pursuits.
How can we examine ourselves and avoid being ensnared by such a life-style?
We need to consider prayerfully how and to what extent we can simplify our life. King Solomon of ancient Israel said:

“Sweet is the sleep of the one serving, regardless of whether it is little or much that he eats; but the plenty belonging to the rich one is not permitting him to sleep.” (Ecclesiastes 5:12)

Does taking care of unnecessary material possessions consume a lot of our time and energy? The more we own, the more we have to maintain, insure, and protect.
Could it be to our advantage to simplify our life by freeing ourselves of certain belongings?

Lennon (right) performing "All You Need I...

Lennon (right) performing “All You Need Is Love” with The Beatles in 1967 to 400 million viewers of “Our World”. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

We think life can much be easier when not loving the material things and not focusing on the world and its worldly life.

On the other hand, by cultivating a healthy fear of displeasing Jehovah, loving justice, and being determined to hold a good conscience, we show that we love “purity of heart.” That love moves us to continue to “conduct ourselves honestly in all things.” (Hebrews 13:18)

18 Carry on prayer+ for us, for we trust we have an honest conscience, as we wish to conduct ourselves honestly in all things.+ 19 But I exhort YOU more especially to do this, that I may be restored to YOU the sooner.+ (Hebrews 13:18

When we act uprightly, honesty can result in a fine witness.

Emilio, an Italian Witness who works as a driver for a public transport company, found a wallet containing 470 euros ($680, U.S.). To the surprise of his colleagues, he handed the wallet to his supervisor, who later gave the wallet to the person who had lost it. Some of Emilio’s colleagues were so impressed by his conduct that they became interested in the Bible and started to study. As a result, seven people from two families have accepted the truth. Yes, behaving honestly from a pure heart really can move others to praise God.Titus 2:10.

Materialism may not seem to be an issue of loyalty, but it is. Do we trust in Jehovah’s promise to provide what we really need?

33 “Keep on, then, seeking* first the kingdom and his righteousness,+ and all these [other] things will be added to YOU.+ 34 So, never be anxious about the next day,+ for the next day will have its own anxieties. Sufficient for each day is its own badness.  (Matthew 6:33-34)

Let [YOUR] manner of life be free of the love of money,+ while YOU are content+ with the present things.+ For he has said: “I will by no means leave you nor by any means forsake you.”+ (Hebrews 13:5)

Rather than striving to obtain at any cost some of the “better” things in life that are presently beyond our reach, can we do without them? (Read Philippians 4:11-13.) Are we tempted to forgo theocratic privileges in order to get what we want now? Does loyal service to Jehovah have first place in our life? Our answers will largely depend on whether we are wholehearted in our service to God or not.

“It is a means of great gain,”

wrote the apostle Paul,

“this godly devotion along with self-sufficiency. For we have brought nothing into the world, and neither can we carry anything out. So, having sustenance and covering, we shall be content with these things.”—1 Timothy 6:6-8.

In a revelation to the apostle John toward the close of the first century, the glorified Jesus Christ delivered a message to the congregation located in Laodicea, Asia Minor. It was a warning message against materialism. Though materially rich, Laodicean Christians were bankrupt spiritually. Instead of continuing to walk by faith, they allowed material possessions to blind their spiritual vision. (Revelation 3:14-18) Materialism has a similar effect today. It weakens our faith and causes us to stop ‘running with endurance the race’ for life. (Hebrews 12:1) If we are not careful, the “pleasures of this life” can smother spiritual activities to the point that they are “completely choked.”

14 As for that which fell among the thorns, these are the ones that have heard, but, by being carried away by anxieties and riches and pleasures+ of this life, they are completely choked and bring nothing to perfection.+ (Luke 8:14).

Time ran out for the world of Noah’s day, and it will run out for the present system of things. The apostle Peter assures us:

“Jehovah’s day will come as a thief, in which the heavens will pass away with a hissing noise, but the elements being intensely hot will be dissolved, and earth and the works in it will be discovered.”

Neither the symbolic heavens — wicked governments — nor the symbolic earth — mankind alienated from God — will survive the heat of God’s burning anger. Indicating how we can prove ourselves ready for that day, Peter exclaims:

“Since all these things are thus to be dissolved, what sort of persons ought you to be in holy acts of conduct and deeds of godly devotion, awaiting and keeping close in mind the presence of the day of Jehovah!”—2 Peter 3:10-12.

A key to spiritual protection is contentment rather than the use of this world to the full and the enrichment of ourselves materially. (1 Corinthians 7:31; 1 Timothy 6:6-8) We as such do not have to look so much at the world of mankind or the kingdom of mankind but at the world of the Kingdom of God. When we walk by faith and not by sight, we find joy in the present spiritual paradise. As we partake of nourishing spiritual food, are we not moved to “cry out joyfully because of the good condition of the heart”? (Isaiah 65:13, 14) Moreover, we take delight in our association with those who manifest the fruitage of God’s spirit.

22 On the other hand, the fruitage+ of the spirit is love, joy, peace, long-suffering, kindness, goodness,+ faith, 23 mildness, self-control.+ Against such things there is no law.+ 24 Moreover, those who belong to Christ Jesus impaled* the flesh together with its passions and desires.+ (Galatians 5:22, 23)

How vital that we find satisfaction and refreshment in what Jehovah provides in a spiritual way!

Some questions we do well to ask ourselves are:

‘What place do material things occupy in my life? Am I using the material possessions I have to live a life of pleasure or to promote true worship? What brings me the greatest satisfaction? Is it Bible study and fellowship at Christian meetings, or is it weekends away from Christian responsibilities? Do I reserve many weekends for recreation instead of using such time for the field ministry and other activities in connection with pure worship?’

Our regularly attending Christian meetings and sharing in preaching the good news are included among the necessary acts and deeds of godly devotion. May we perform them with heartfelt devotion to God while we wait patiently for Jehovah’s great day. Let us “do [our] utmost to be found finally by [God] spotless and unblemished and in peace.”—2 Peter 3:14.

Walking by faith means that we keep busy in the Kingdom work, with full trust in Jehovah’s promises.

58 Consequently, my beloved brothers, become steadfast,+ unmovable, always having plenty to do in the work of the Lord,+ knowing that YOUR labor is not in vain*+ in connection with [the] Lord. (1 Corinthians 15:58).

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Preceding articles:

Material wealth, Submission and Heaven on earth

For The Love of Stuff

Learning that stuff is just stuff

Watch out

Thought of the day: We want more, i want more, but why is that?

Mini-MAX-malism: A Bigger Approach to Less is More

Less… is still enough

Less for more

The Art of Doing Less – Your Time is Finite

Looking at a conservative review of Shop Class As Soul Craft

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Additional reading:

  1. What is life?
  2. Greed more common than generosity
  3. Some one or something to fear #2 Attitude and Reactions
  4. Some one or something to fear #3 Cases, folks and outing
  5. Some one or something to fear #4 Families and Competition
  6. Struggles of life
  7. It continues to be a never ending, exhausting battle for survival.
  8. Searching for fulfillment and meaning through own efforts, facing unsatisfaction and depression
  9. Daily portion of heavenly food
  10. I Only hope we find GOD again before it is too late!
  11. How should we react against the world
  12. A call easy to understand
  13. Followers with deepening
  14. Come ye yourselves apart … and rest awhile (Mark 6:31)
  15. Suffering redemptive because Jesus redeemed us from sin
  16. Looking forward to God’s faithfulness
  17. Count your blessings
  18. God should be your hope
  19. Always set a place in your life for the unexpected guest
  20. Disciple of Christ counting lives and friends dear to them
  21. Be a ready giver
  22. Contribution – Contributie, bijdrage
  23. Bearing fruit
  24. A small company of Jesus’ footstep follower
  25. What’s church for, anyway?
  26. Making church
  27. Meeting – Vergadering
  28. Congregate, to gather, to meet
  29. Gathering or meeting of believers
  30. An ecclesia in your neighbourhood
  31. Not bounded by labels but liberated in Christ
  32. Breathing and growing with no heir
  33. Breathing to teach
  34. Reasons to come together
  35. God won’t ask
  36. Communion and day of worship
  37. Trusting, Faith, Calling and Ascribing to Jehovah #6 Prayer #4 Attitude
  38. Trusting, Faith, Calling and Ascribing to Jehovah #18 Fulfilment

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Further reading:

17 Comments

Filed under Being and Feeling, Lifestyle, Religious affairs, Spiritual affairs, Welfare matters

Summermonths and consumerism

Summertime seems to have difficulties to show her face this year. Over a few days the days will shorten again and we did not have yet some real good nice warm days.

In the supermarkets they feel the consumption of meat not taking off like they want and therefore they are presenting special bargain prices, advertising against other trying to present the cheapest products. If they would be the best products would be an other matter. Also if they would be produced in a decent ethical way is for many of no concern.

We can imagine Middle School teacher Bob James throughout the year has to face his pupils with all sorts of gadgets, disturbed and tempted by lots of consumer products and market activities.

Real teachers do find it necessary to help others. Bob James also is firmly convinced that all of us need to be more proactive in helping others.

We need to help them when disaster strikes, when they are recovering and then when developing their lives to be the people that God intended them to be. We are meant to be independent of all except for God. On Him alone should we be dependent. Thus, as I seek to help others, I seek to move beyond mere relief and am focusing on rehabilitation and reconciliation. We are to be reconciled with God, with our fellow human beings and with our environment. If any one of these is missing, we will have problems. This is a tall order, but I will always seek to bring reconciliation. {About Me}

He, like many teachers are daily confronted with the non-interest for God, is probably also seeing that today the kids, but also their parents, have made new gods and have more interest in the material belongings than the spiritual.

The Human Use of Human Beings

The Human Use of Human Beings (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

In previous articles on this blog we pointed out to this behaviour which is destroying our society like CO poisoning, not seen, not smelled, not heard. We are living in a society where eyes are directed on gaining capital, even if we need not to take notice of necessary protection for man or do not mind bringing shortage or harm to others, to get more money.

Our economy is based on consumerism. Ads are designed to appeal to people like me and make me not just want, but Need, the latest thing – whether that be a soft drink or the latest model car. {June 8 – What I Really Need}

In the years straight after the World Wars people seemed to know again the value of the necessities of life. Folks appreciated again the small things. (We remember sitting with three on a bench, having one study book, which we savoured like the best we could have to receive knowledge. We never wanted to have it for ourselves alone and where pleased when we could share things with others.) They were pleased with what they could get. They also wanted to show to others who they were and used their cloths to present their identity.

Today everybody seems to be hiding behind their clothes. They now have to be from one or the other brand, design and colour which is in fashion. All want to belong to the group and hide their own self behind brands which are ‘in’. Everything must be dictated by the market. Nobody wants to go against what the market dictates.

English: RedEye Sailboat Category:Images of Ch...

RedEye Sailboat one of the things people like to have for enjoying themselves and to show off (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

In Summer this is made even more clear by everybody wanting to go in the garden and show off with what the market advertises and wants to press on everybody. As such, once it is beautiful weather, we can not sit outdoors without having to smell all the combustion products, from the people who do not know how to use properly those advertised and bought barbecue sets.

Having holiday also became equivalent to travelling. When people to day are saying they go on holiday, they mostly mean and want the other person to think they are going to travel abroad. For many taking a holiday in the own garden or in the own country is not having a holiday any more. The market made them to believe to relax and to take vacation or to take leave has to be going abroad and spending a lot of money at enjoyment, entertainment parks, luxury meals and pampering and health treatments.

People have to believe they only count in this society when they can show that they are using the latest gadgets and are ‘by the time’. All people who have not the newest things are ‘old’ or ‘out of date’. They best are ignored or put aside, as not being the right people to associate with. Or they are laughed at as old fashioned or ‘nerds’.

Bob James remarks:

How easily we buy the latest thing and throw away the old. One of the problems is that we not only throw away things, we also tend to throw away people or relationships if they don’t “meet our needs.” {June 8 – What I Really Need}

Those needs have become very selfish. Everything is directed to the ‘I’ and to the ‘what can I gain from this relationship’. Most people want to associate with other people in such a way that they may be sure others will find them interesting for the knowledge and acquaintances of such people. Most relations are build on the use they can provide for the self. Not the giving away has become important, nor the meaning something for some one else, but the meaning for the person him or herself, has become the landmark.

Clearly the focus of most people came on to the wrong things. This also made many relationships not last and break down. Often we see the other person has become of no real value, when not usable any more. We see that at work. As son as a person gets to ‘old’ or to ‘experienced’ and to ‘expensive because of ‘seniority’ he is made redundant.

But also the material things do not get time to stay in use as valuable. As soon there is a new model, the old one is considered as ‘passée’ .
Most people have placed their mind on things which are disposable.

What we should be thinking about is not “things,” but people. {June 8 – What I Really Need}

writes Bob James.

What we should be focusing on more than anything is our relationship with God. {June 8 – What I Really Need} (Though in his article gives a quote about focussing on Jesus, who is not God but the son of God, but who also deserves our attention.)

Today, we can see that a lot of people who are debtors to the material things of this world. Most have forgotten that their body should be a temple, a place for clean things. Natural products for many are a laugh-stock. Biological products for many are either for the ‘loonies’ or have become a way to show off, because they are much more expensive and a way to proof they can afford it and belong to such a class of people, having enough money to buy such things.

Instead of respect for nature and respect for the Creator of all those things man shows more interest to the highly perishable idols presented on television and more and more on the internet, which brings totally new sorts of idols in the living room. All those living according to flesh, often forget that they too, like anybody else, are going to die, but if in spirit they kill the deeds of the body, and that they have much better prospects. For those who live in the spirit can find real intense worthwhile life.

Part of our problem with this issue is that our desires have been made to seem like needs. If we began each day with a focus on Jesus Christ, many of those things we think are “needs” would be shown to be desires. {June 8 – What I Really Need}

Christ Jesus is the man of flesh and blood who gave the world an example how to live according to the will of the Only One God, Whom we should consider the Most High and the Most Valuable. Jesus knew he could not do anything without God. Jesus never did his own will but always wanted to do the Will of God.  Today most consider God a flaw or useless invention.

Lots of people, having all those modern gadgets still do not feel happy. Having so many things they do not yet feel satisfied. They still have a hunger …

They are starving for the real better thing which they do not seem to see by the mist of consumerism. Lots of people are running into problems when they work so hard to take care of all their desires for material things, that they forget to spend more time to build up good relations.

Most people do not see or forget about what they really need.

Bob James thinks about a strong relationship with Jesus Christ, but seems to forget an even more important relationship, namely that with the heavenly Father of Jesus, the Only One True God.

This world needs to find the way back to God. It has lost connection with the Creator. The world has become strayed. We have to take care we become not astray by the temptations around us.

Keep your eyes on Jesus and as such find the Way to God and the way to God’s Kingdom.

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Preceding articles:

Lonely in the crowd

Misleading world, stress, technique, superficiality, past, future and positivism

Less… is still enough

Less for more

Contentment: The five senses

How to Find the Meaning of Life and Reach a State of Peace

See the conquest and believe that we can gain the victory

The Cares of Life

The natural beauties of life

Engagement in an actual two-way conversation with your deities

Just be yourself…

A Snippet of Advice on Cultural Analysis

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Find additional literature:

  1. Capitalism
  2. Increasing wealth gap of immense proportions in the Capitalist World
  3. Classes of people and Cronyism
  4. Uncertainty, shame and no time for vacillation
  5. Because men choose to go their own way
  6. Welfare state and Poverty in Flanders #9 Consumption
  7. A risk taking society
  8. What IF you’re only driven by stress?
  9. Ecological economics in the stomach #2 Resources
  10. How do you keep people from stealing your joy?
  11. 2014 Social contacts
  12. Justififiable anger or just anarchism
  13. Ability for a community to come back from a crisis
  14. Green Claims in Europe
  15. Greenpeace demands scale up of ecological farming
  16. Happy International Happiness Day!
  17. Being Religious and Spiritual 1 Immateriality and Spiritual experience
  18. Being Religious and Spiritual 3 Philosophers, Avicennism and the spiritual
  19. Being Religious and Spiritual 8 Spiritual, Mystic and not or well religious
  20. Looking for True Spirituality 2 Not restricted to an elite
  21. How long to wait before bringing religiousness and spirituality in practice
  22. Sharing thoughts and philosophical writings
  23. Lovers of God, seekers and lovers of truth
  24. Fools despise wisdom and instruction
  25. In a world which knows no peace sharing blessed hope
  26. The road to success is dotted with many tempting parking places
  27. Cleanliness and worrying or not about purity
  28. Cognizance at the doorstep or at the internet socket
  29. Jehovah steep rock and fortress, source of insight
  30. Perishable non theologians daring to go out to preach
  31. Bringing Good News into the world
  32. How should we preach?
  33. Thanksgiving wisdom: Why gratitude is good for your health
  34. Food as a Therapeutic Aid
  35. Remember there’s a light in the next day
  36. It is a free will choice
  37. To know Christ is filling life with meaning
  38. Heed of the Saviour
  39. Songs in the night Worship God only
  40. Blessed is the man who does not walk in the counsel of the wicked

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15 Comments

Filed under Economical affairs, Lifestyle, Spiritual affairs

Misleading world, stress, technique, superficiality, past, future and positivism

I am convinced that in case we try to bend all our negative thoughts into the direction of good thoughts we can manage better. Very important to avoid stress situations simply is avoiding those people who could bring us into such a situation. We best avoid negative influences and associate better more with people who can contribute positiveness in our life.

Eliminative Materialism

Eliminative Materialism (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

We should be careful not to be taken in, by not be focusing on the distribution of material power because that are the matters which can bring us down.  Materialism in the end always will kill the person. Always being aware that no way we ever shall get a good working system or any political system that can solve everything. For that we shall have to wait until the return of Christ, when the Kingdom of God shall at last become a full reality. Before that the reality of a perfect world is an illusion. The reality that surrounds us is not in itself a product of the objective forces but one of our shared perceptions, ideas, social values and understanding. We would be fooling ourselves if we believed the state and the inter-state systems, would not be artificial constructs, meaning that they are constructed by humans, and they can be changed and developed in new ways in extreme cases leading to anarchy and a huge security dilemma.

We all should work on coming to understand how the world evolves and what for influence we as human beings have on nature. when you look how we treat nature it more seems that we are very good at destroying it instead of living in symbioses with it.

At the moment how people are making a mess of the world they are also putting stress on the whole community, using everything and every one to get as much material gain as they can. Not many people are really interested in the spiritual site of life. Most people are also not interested to come to know or to come to an understanding of the universe and the world around us.

All the things that happened in the past can never be undone. This can be hard to swallow and it can bring much sadness to us. But it has no use to linger on such bad events, sad happenings and to keep facing depressing thoughts. the world must go on, and we with it.

Instead of having people to succeed to push us in a hole, getting us not believing in ourselves any more, we better try to understand why such people became so envious, jealous, and so frustrated that they like to bully others. They would like to kill all initiative others would take, because that would put them in the shadow. Often such people looking to get all the power would not mind putting all those on their path, standing in their way,to not only put them in the shadow, but to get them in the dark, not having to play any significant role any more. it is all a matter of control. And when we lose control we might come into a phase of stress and they think they also would come in a phase of no power any more.

Sharing  control and sharing tasks has not to mean you would or the other would loose control. Together more can be managed than on your own. Often when people start feeling their loosing control they do come in afraid to loose their position in the comfort zone. Some may take on the defence mode and try to suppress the other, others may come in the discomfort zone and feeling stress. at first the one feeling the pressure at work might thing he or she could solve the problem with working harder, giving himself or herself more for the job, but many of such hard-working and optimistically minded individuals have lost their jobs and have come so depressed, taken over by the stress or worries.

We best take care we do not get in a position were we could start dwelling on the negative spiral to nowhere. It leads to nihilism. We too can avoid that others get in a stress situation and loose their optimism. By encouraging others to focus on the positives is an act of ‘brotherly love‘. It also shows a faith in other individuals as well as a faith in what is around you or in the organization you are working for.

English: Captain Edward Rickenbacker, America'...

Captain Edward Rickenbacker, America’s premier “Ace” officially credited with 22 enemy planes and the proud wearer of the French War Cross as he appeared upon his arrival on board the Adriatic. Underwood and Underwood., ca. 1919  (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

We all should remember  what World War I ace and aviation entrepreneur, Eddie Rickenbacker said:

Think positively and masterfully, with confidence and faith, and life becomes more secure, more fraught with action, richer in experience and achievement.” That is an attitude worth maintaining and nurturing especially when times are so severe.

A big problem today is that most people are so focused on the materialism they do not see that there are more important matters and they think somebody else can destroy them. Several people consider atheism as being more useful for the development of life forces and the worldly satisfaction of the larger masses of mankind. {“Materialism Destroys the Eternal Spirit.” Articles by and on Berdyaev, Returning to Berdyaev at the Return to Materialism}

The triumph of the bourgeois spirit led Berdyaev to declare that history was a story of failure. Berdyaev lamented that the will to power and affluence had triumphed over the will to holiness and genius.” (Peter Maurin: Prophet in the Twentieth Century, Paulist Press, l98l.) {Nicholas Berdyaev, Prophet for the Catholic Worker Movement Materialism Destroys the Eternal Spirit}

This world is taken over by materialism, idolatries of power, lust and comfort. Normally you would think all the luxury would bring much satisfaction to the people, but by comparing what others have and what they do not have the  jealousy took them down in a spiral of envy and bring them in a stress situation. Lots of people have created their own god. They do not understand that the for them useful and practically effective god of capitalism cannot be the True God. When you look at their god or gods you might come to see that it is no problem at all to unmask their new and popular gods. We can see that many adore the money and have put away The Only One God of religious revelations far away. For them That God can not be seen nor felt and therefore has no value for them. You could ask them: whenever did you try to look for Him and tried to see Him?

We have become surrounded by technique and many are totally taken by it and also have become very dependant on it. Their relationship with all that technical stuff however did not help to bring them into closer communion with their inner life and soul of nature. they might think it brought them closer together, and has created them having more ‘friends’ on the social networks. But they do not see that many of them are ‘virtual friends’ and have not a real social connection at all. We even see that more people become more isolated in their environment of Linked-in and Facebook relatives. They might have many so called ‘friends’ in their circles but they are very lonely … on their own. They, in their isolation, also seem to loose track of their own possibilities.

The machine sets its stamp upon the human spirit and all its manifestations. Thus civilization has neither a natural nor a spiritual, but a mechanical foundation. It represents par excellence the triumph of technique over both the spirit and organism.

The machine and technique are the product of the mental development and discoveries of culture; but they sap its organic foundations and kill its spirit. {Nicholas Berdyaev, Prophet for the Catholic Worker Movement Materialism Destroys the Eternal Spirit}

With all the focus on material goods not much interest can be found for culture. those working in the cultural field may be tampered and losing positivism as well. They have to find a way to earn their living and are persuaded to greater concessions. Many artists having lost the artistic soul, becoming part of the mainstream ‘civilization’ where spiritual matters are discounted and where quantity has displaced quality.

The assertion of the will to “life,” power, organization and earthly happiness, brings about mankind’s spiritual decline; for the higher spiritual life is based upon asceticism and resignation. Such are the tragedy and fate of historical destinies. {Nicholas Berdyaev, Prophet for the Catholic Worker Movement Materialism Destroys the Eternal Spirit}

Vyacheslav Ivanov, Lev Kobilinskij-Ellis, Niko...

Vyacheslav Ivanov, Lev Kobilinskij-Ellis, Nikolai Berdyaev (standing) and Andrei Bely (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I do not think like that civilization as opposed to culture, which is given up to the contemplation of eternity, tends to be futurist. I do agree that machinery and technique are chiefly responsible for the speeding up of life, but that some might have lost the reason why we could make advantage of such tools. and its exclusive aspiration towards the future. the technique should have helped our society to come more at ease and to be less stressful. Many let the machine take over and concentrated more on the material gain it could bring instead of making use or advantage of the time it could make free for them to do other things.

Organic life is slower, less impetuous, and more concerned with essentials, while civilized life is superficial and accidental; for it puts the means and instruments of life before the ends whose significance is lost. The consciousness of civilized men is concentrated exclusively upon the means and technique of life considered as the only reality, while its aims are regarded as illusory. {Nicholas Berdyaev, Prophet for the Catholic Worker Movement Materialism Destroys the Eternal Spirit}

may think that spiritual culture is unreal, but for me culture is fundamental for a healthy community. Culture is is not a mere instrument of technique, it is the gear transmission of society. It is the sociological controller and instigator for a good relation between end and means. Culture is also the mirror for man to put everything in perspective and the golden thread in history. Today we may see the loss of any sense of purpose in human life, culture and religion.

All historical tendencies which have striven to create harmony, to overcome the dark premise, to subdue the turbulence of freedom and supersede it by compelled and necesary good, are concerned only with the secondary signs of the unique and primal mystery of divine freedom. {Nicholas Berdyaev, Prophet for the Catholic Worker Movement Materialism Destroys the Eternal Spirit}

We as human beings should remember we are only a very tiny element in the universe. We would love to believe that everything turns around us, but we are thoroughly mistaken.

21st Century Materialism

21st Century Materialism (Photo credit: tomislavmedak)

I do agree with Berdyaev that humankind has a solution in front of them, which was already given to them early from the start. And that it is this fundamental moral contradiction we are facing today that invalidates the doctrine of progress, turning it into a religion of death instead of resurrection and eternal life.

There is no valid ground for degrading those generations whose lot has been cast among pain and imperfection beneath that whose pre-eminence has been ordained in blessedness and joy. No future perfection can expiate the sufferings of past generations. Such a sacrifice of all human destinies to the messianic consummation of the favoured race can only revolt man’s moral and religious conscience. A religion of progress based on this apotheosis of a future fortunate generation is without compassion for either present or past; it addresses itself with infinite optimism to the future, with infinite pessimism to the past. It is profoundly hostile to the Christian expectation of resurrection for all mankind, for all the dead, fathers and forefathers. This Christian idea rests on the hope of an end to historical tragedy and contradiction valid for all human generations, and of resurrection in eternal life for all who have ever lived. {Nicholas Berdyaev, Prophet for the Catholic Worker Movement Materialism Destroys the Eternal Spirit}

Our habit of breaking up time into the past, present and future does not entitle us to endow the last with more reality than the first. From the standpoint of the present, the future is no richer in reality than the past, and our efforts should be with reference, not to the future, but to that eternal present of which both future and past are one. {Nicholas Berdyaev, Prophet for the Catholic Worker Movement Materialism Destroys the Eternal Spirit}

More people in this world should make the choice on what they really want to focus. Too much we have forgotten the importance of the choices we have to make and on the direction we have to focus our eyes and mind. We should all be convinced how much we ourselves can regulate our own life and how much depends on the focus on what we want is directly proportional to what we can achieve.

To many of us are more concerned to prove ourselves for man, instead of proving ourselves for the Higher Being. How many of us are not willing to change themselves, just for the sake of wining someone’s approval.

Geetika Garg, who is trying to know more about everything around her, writes on her blog:

You don’t have to prove yourself worthwhile by doing what others wish; it’s certainly not your job. Be confident for who you are, for who you had been all those years, stand strong for all the decisions that you have made and have faith in yourself.  You are enough for your ow. {You Matter}

Too many people have forgotten to be their own self and to dare to speak out for themselves.  A lot of people who would have loved to have more affinity for the spiritual have been pressed against the wall by the materialists. they put their own inner soul aside, thinking they would be less than the other. they looked for ways outside themselves to prove themselves by doing what others wished them to do. they should know that is not the right way and is neither to help them nor the ones they are hoping to please.

May I quote the lady who believes whatever we are seeking is seeking us too, and has hopes that the day the two will meet, it will be complete, perfect as it is meant to be!

Be confident for who you are, for who you had been all those years, stand strong for all the decisions that you have made and have faith in yourself.  You are enough for your own self; you are capable of achieving what all you desire and you require absolutely none to tell you how worthy you are. Instead of focusing on what critics have to say why not concentrate on those who praise you.  Those people are the ones with all positivism and happiness. We often tend to forget that they exist and keep believing on all bad about us. They are the people who matter. Let go of rest. Don’t let your ears used to of those cruel words that inhibit your growth, that steal a part of you and things that change your entire being. {You Matter}

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Recommended readings:

  1. Social Constructivism and Positivism in the Context of International Relations
  2. Put Positivism to Work
  3. Returning to Berdyaev at the Return to Materialism
  4. Berdyaev on the Nature of Spirit and Reality in Relation to Apologetics
  5. The Practice of Philosophy and Modes of Knowing: Hart’s Rejoinder to Zuidervaart?
  6. Searching for fulfillment and meaning through own efforts, facing unsatisfaction and depression
  7. Depression, Anxiety, Pressure and megachurches
  8. Philosophy hand in hand with spirituality
  9. Aligned
  10. Malefactors becoming your master
  11. Control your destiny or somebody else will
  12. Control and change
  13. Science and God’s existence
  14. Do we have to be an anarchist to react
  15. Getting out of the dark corners of this world
  16. Value Positivism
  17. Patience is the ability to count down before blasting off
  18. He who smiles rather than rages is always the stronger
  19. To whom do we want to be enslaved
  20. Power in the life of certain
  21. Know Who goes with us and don’t try to control life
  22. God is my refuge and my fortress in Him I will trust

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  • Nihilism Cannot Be Disproved (Except by Positivism) (pensatwar.wordpress.com)
    Pure nihilism (and not any of the subcategories of it) can be defined simply as: The belief that there is no truth. Positivism is the opposite; that there is truth.
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    Nihilists, pure nihilists, do not have a profound effect on society. They can’t. If one truly believes in 100% Nihilism, why do anything? If a person is dedicated to nihilism all the time for their entire life, they will have had no extra effect on reality whatsoever. They will have simply existed and passed, with no meaning.
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    Nihilism can only be disproved by Positivism. Its a purely democratic philosophical clash.
  • Positivism and The Quantity Theory of Money (syesworldview.wordpress.com)
    The doctrine of positivism is a form of arch-empiricism that tries to crystallise the supposed process of ‘scientific thought’. An adherent of positivism believes that there are general ‘laws’ of cause and effect in the natural/social sciences and the only way to uncover these ‘laws’ is via the tool of research. An adherent of positivism believes that objective analysis – whatever is meant by this – is the only form of analysis; indeed there exists a zero possibility of the observer influencing the observed. Nature is orderly and regular; scientific knowledge is cumulative in character and all objective phenomena are eventually knowable – all characterize the approach of positivism.
  • If you’re afraid to do it, do it afraid. (carolynhughesthehurthealer.com)
    What are you frightened of? Anything that stops you living your life to the full, whether it’s fear of failure, fear of rejection, fear of the future can all impact on your life. Yet it is possible to overcome that detrimental negative thinking. You may never be completely fearless but you can learn to break out of your comfort-zone and find the freedom to take your life to a new level.
  • Positivism for Millennium 3 (politicalpipeline.wordpress.com)
    Positivism describes a process to discover and authenticate knowledge (within reality) via the scientific method, which examines and then verifies (it’s positive). There is an initial hypothesis: this is a folded piece of paper, all swans are white, democracies start wars, etc., and then verification would validate or invalidate the hypothesis. Knowledge, in this manner, forms—and there is something for scientists to teach.In order for this scientific method to move forward, we have come to know six basic understandings of positivism. They are: unified science (created an ideology of a one-layered world, reality may be reduced to physics), empiricism (knowledge gained through mental or physical experimentation), objectivism (uninvolved observer), value freedom (no normative value is placed on the object of study), instrumentalism (observing it as a thing in the world), and technicism (value methods over results) (PSS, 13-14). Positivism took root in western philosophy in the 18th century and decayed in the winters and sprang in the summers of the 20th century.
  • The Future of Capitalism according to Nikolai Berdyaev (channelclimate.wordpress.com)
    Most educated people in the West have heard of Fyodor Dostoevsky. But how many have heard of Nikolai Berdyaev? He was a Russian religious philosopher of the first half of the 20th century. And he had some interesting (albeit controversial) insights regarding the future of Capitalism. In his book The New Middle Ages (1933) that I’m currently reading he made several important observations on the issue.


    First, in Berdyaev’s view development of society resembles cycles rather than spirals (in his view, it is somewhat similar to the day-night pattern). Second, the terms progressive and reactionary are relative if not utterly meaningless in a debate; for example, Christianity was progressive compared to the Old Gods but reactionary compared to the Capitalist New History. Third, the philosopher predicted that the 20th century frontier would be between Communism and Capitalism, or between
    God and The Godless (and he wasn’t referring to the production possibilities frontier). Fourth, he claimed that Russia had never fully embraced the Western way of life, including its rationality, laws, and norms. In fact, Russia has stepped directly from the old Middle Ages into the new Middle Ages. How, you’ll ask? By way of the Bolshevik revolution. According to Berdyaev, Communism is a Satanic religion, but a religion nonetheless, that sent Russia back into the Middle Ages (but note: when he used the term “the Middle Ages”, unlike modern Liberals he didn’t think of it in a condescending way).
  • Legal Positivism and the Common Law (allenmendenhallblog.com)
    Legal positivism, in the most basic sense, holds that laws are the manifestation of sovereign commands. It stands in contradistinction to natural law or the judicial conformity with human reason that supposedly defines the common law.
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    What distinguishes the common law from a civil law system is the doctrine of stare decisis (“let the decision stand”), which requires judges to follow precedents established by prior decisions or to distinguish the facts of new cases from the facts of previous cases in order to reach an applicable rule.
  • Surrendering to positivism (thehimalayantimes.com)
    The world is progressing in the field of science and technology, but peace cannot be attained through that. The fact is that peace can be acquired only through spiritual ideas. Until one imbibes the teachings of Swami Vivekananda, peace cannot be understood.
    In today’s context, everybody is striving to be perfect, but there still is inequity everywhere. That is the reason why revolution took place in Nepal and other places — because there is lack of proper attention to every individual’s need. People who lead the country should be selfless, but unfortunately, they are corrupt. They lack spiritual ideas.
  • Negative Positivism (hasarla.wordpress.com)
    Help arises when you arises. But if you stand and watch, they will do the same and feel your loss and you been d positive dude/girl programmed to rise after every fall (which is right), stay positive when all looks downright bleak, just keep moving on.
  • Positivism and Utilitarianism (arulinside.wordpress.com)
    According to Dias the positivist movement started at the beginning of the 19th century. It represented a reaction against the a priori methods of thinking which turned away from the realities of actual law in order to discover nature or reason the principles of universal validity. Hart pointed out that the term positivism has many meanings which one of them is that laws are commands. Law as command is associated with Jeremy Bentham and John Austin that both are the founder of the British positivism.
  • Logical Positivism and the Copenhagen Interpretation of Quantum Mechanics (unfspb.wordpress.com)
    Logical positivism is a more or less loose collection of philosophical theses- some of which are incompatible- which have their genesis in the scientific inclinations of the Vienna Circle members (on this see Friedman 1999 and Uebel 2009). However, one may identify two broadly unifying themes within logical positivism: (1) a verificationist epistemology and (2) an instrumentalist stance toward scientific theories.
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Filed under Cultural affairs, Economical affairs, Lifestyle, Religious affairs, Spiritual affairs

A bird’s eye and reflecting from within

Can you imagine flying birds travelling for miles and miles, crossing habitat regions and places where nearly no human being tramples on the ground.

metropolis

metropolis (Photo credit: jonfeinstein)

From high above those birds can see how those earthlings destroy their own habitat. They see them wanting to live in their own dirt.

Those birds look down at those creatures who so often dream about what they can do and worry so much about the day of tomorrow. They do not imagine the life those people want, though many of them might imagine wonderful things.
Those beings down there spent lots of their time focusing on gathering all sorts of material gadgets. Their world seems to turn more around money than on getting food. Though we must be honest lots of them also focus their intention toward realizing their deepest desires and dreams.

How many of those people dare to go up in the sky and go forward to that one goal, thousands of miles away?

How many would begin to believe those dreams, aims and goals were possible?

A Soul Talk questions:

If you gave your attention to those things in your mind that spoke of your great beauty and talent, would you start to believe and have confidence in yourself again?  If life all around you is simply a reflection of those thoughts you most focus on, wouldn’t you be more careful of what you repeated over and over again to yourself?

When we look in nature we do see that the seasons decide what shall going to happen. The animals do not doubt. They are not going to wait and see if it will be worthwhile to take off or to settle down.

The birds can often see man as a fish which fails to see the water it swims in. They have a brain but use it strangely and are so often more concerned about figuring things out. they all think they are able to make and control their own world. Most of them want to play for God. Everything they do becomes calculated. Modern mind has become more and more calculating.

The calculative exactness of practical life which the money economy has brought about corresponds to the ideal of natural science: to transform the world into an arithmetic problem, to fix every part of the world by mathematical formulas. Only money economy has filled the days of so many people with weighing, calculating, with numerical determinations, with a reduction of qualitative values to quantitative ones. (“The Metropolis and Mental Life” p.412)

They all look for consistent and reliable formulas to how life works. For them formulas are re-assuring, such as

“be a banker/lawyer/accountant/doctor, because these jobs translate into big numbers, and these big numbers mean success”.

Success is something which they can count and measure. They have their eyes focused on those pieces of papers with heads and figures on it, but do not see where they are flying at.

Eddie Tay on Hong Kong lucida writes:

Of course, there are many successful bankers/lawyers/accountants/doctors who lead meaningful lives and who enjoy their jobs. I’m only arguing against the confusion between quality and quantity. Quality cannot be easily quantified. Sometimes we play this soundtrack too readily. {The Metropolis and Mental Life}

English: Hong Kong Kowloon Panorama Victoria P...

Hong Kong Kowloon Panorama Victoria Peak 2011 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

For the birds it may look like life for man is oh so infinitely easy, and everything seems to lie at their fingertips. They have their big nests,  buildings which want to compete with the trees and air around, hoping to be the tallest one. They have their educational institutions, in the wonders and comforts of space-conquering technology, in the formations of community life, and in the visible institutions of the state. They offer themselves fantasies and create fro themselves an overwhelming fullness of crystallized and impersonalized spirit that the personality, so to speak, cannot maintain itself under its impact. From all sides they allow ideas coming up to them, in the hope they can become a personality like by the others. From the others they want to receive stimulations and interests. They all are consumed by time.

They carry the person as if in a stream, and one needs hardly to swim for oneself. On the other hand, however, life is composed more and more of these impersonal contents and offerings which tend to displace the genuine personal colorations and incomparabilities. This results in the individual’s summoning the utmost in uniqueness and particularization, in order to preserve his most personal core. He has to exaggerate this personal element in order to remain audible even to himself.  (“The Metropolis and Mental Life” p. 422)

Eddie Tay finds this to be rather depressing.

The modern concern with the uniqueness of our personality emerges out of an anxiety. Now that everything is for sale, we’re compelled to be “unique”, “autonomous” and “individual” so as to differentiate ourselves from other cogs in the giant capitalist machine. “Look at me I’m so unique and interesting,” I tell myself and others, knowing that there are tens of thousands of people around me (and many with blogs like this) saying precisely the same thing. {The Metropolis and Mental Life}

Many more people should be aware that

We are surrounded by things we buy with numbers. And these things, whether tangible or intangible, which we buy and sell, turn us into who we are. {The Metropolis and Mental Life}

http://hongkonglucida.files.wordpress.com/2014/04/img_20140327_0045-640.jpg

Photo from Eddie Tay, Honk Kong lucida

We make ourselves, by what we consume for our mind and for our mind. Stomach and brain take up the food what we present it, we can either make it healthy or poison it. When you look at certain markets, it seems that people can not get enough of material, but also are drowning themselves by it. Too many people forget what impact all those things around them can have on their life.

We all should better take a moment to transfer ourselves in a bird and look at ourselves from way up there in the sky. We should take some distance, now and then, from what we do and want to do, and reflect on what we did, want to do and on what we would like to succeed and which goal we would like to make.

With Spring time we should not only do our Spring cleaning but we could take a new start. You too, can start today to believe that you can impact your external world by placing your focus on images of love, kindness, and joy and you will truly be surprised by what you attract to yourself.

Start today to live in consciousness as to what is happening within you, you will then have the grand opportunity to create what is happening around you in a more remarkable and enjoyable way. {Simply a reflection from within!}

The mother of Soul talk has learned her lesson from the wise song of her toddler which continues to ring true- in the face of adversity “Never give up never never give up!”.

Keep the faith and you shall persevere- I have learned this very difficult lesson recently and can tell you your only choice is to keep the faith and move forward-the alternative is not so appealing- I can promise you that-your biggest break can be just around the corner and if you did not move towards it you would never know. {Never give up!}

Every year again the birds make their nest. They never seem to be tired to do it over and over again. We should also continue trying to do the things we really want to do.

There are millions of people who do not know they have a security key in their own hands. They themselves have been given, by birth, the key to knowledge and inner peace. All being created in the image of the Divine Creator we do have elements from this Eternal Spirit. He acknowledges our being, but we ourselves are not willing to see our own being in relationship with Him. There lies the biggest problem of humankind.

In case we would accept the Creator of our being, and accept that He has to be the Most High Master, than we could find fulfilment and guidance by following His instructions which He has given to the whole world.

In the Garden of Eden He has given man the right to take care of the world himself. But He always was prepared to help those who wanted Him next to them. Those who want His Guidance He is willing to give.

As adults, we build upon the hopes of our parents and the fertile imaginations of our youth. We continue to foster the dreams that were born in our hearts on our first day of life, yet now have the tools to bring those dreams forth into our realities. {With courage, our dreams become reality!}

That is not bad. We all should have dreams and continue to make dreams. We should try to build up our life by dreams coming through. We have to foster our dreams and have to build up courage to see them through.

The courage to step beyond our fears of failure. The courage to meet doubt head on.  The courage to pursue the ideas that were born in us, given to us, to be discovered by us to enjoy the fantastic world that begs for us to explore. The courage to make all our dreams come true. {With courage, our dreams become reality!}

In case we would accept the Guiding Hand of the Creator and dare to ask Him to help us, He will be there for us.

If we ask, believe, and have the courage to act, and begin to receive, the life we have imagined can be the life we are living.  When we start to believe and have faith in all that is possible for us, then we align with the hopes of our parents, the child within who dared to be whomever she wanted to be, and the adult whose courageous acts of faith allow those dreams to become a reality. {With courage, our dreams become reality!}

We often forget just to take some time to be with that Mightier Being. We mostly trust to much those who are of this earth, instead of counting on the one in heaven.

Why not trying to take a turning point? Why not simply taking the time each day to focus on those positive attributes and intentions that give you great happiness? Putting on the right mind shall help us but also those around us, on the right track and bring them in the right mood. When we do take a positive attitude we may rest assured that people and things will start to show up in your life that will greatly add to your happiness.

Let it be said that a person who feels good on the inside will experience that good on the outside.  A person who looks at life with a glass half full mentality, will eventually have their cup runneth over.  Your world is but a mirror of what is happening inside of you. So before you start your day, promise yourself that you will take a moment or two to reflect on what you are grateful for to charge those positive emotions, then set out to experience your own something wonderful  when you start from that joyous place within. If your world is simply a reflection from within, wouldn’t it be in you best interest to make it the best reflection of a well lived life that you could ever imagine!   {Simply a reflection from within!}

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Preceding articles:

Birds, Birds Everywhere

Birds’ Eye

Food for Thought-Birds of Caution

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Additional reading:

  1. Searching for fulfilment and meaning through own efforts, facing unsatisfaction and depression
  2. The road to success is dotted with many tempting parking places
  3. Some one or something to fear #2 Attitude and Reactions
  4. God Feeds The Birds
  5. Food as a Therapeutic Aid
  6. Men as God
  7. People Seeking for God 5 Bread of life
  8. People Seeking for God 6 Strategy
  9. Religions and Mainliners
  10. The truth is very plain to see and God can be clearly seen
  11. A Living Faith #2 State of your faith
  12. A Living Faith #3 Faith put into action
  13. A Living Faith #10: Our manner of Life #2
  14. A Living Faith #12 The Love for Jesus
  15. Some one or something to fear #7 Not afraid for Gods Name
  16. Texts, writers, accessibility and willingness
  17. Rest thy delight on Jehovah
  18. Without God no purpose, no goal, no hope
  19. A goal is a dream with a plan
  20. A treasure which can give me everything I need
  21. Opportunity!
  22. Count your blessings
  23. By counting our blessings we not only feel good, but we multiply our good
  24. Set free from any form of mental torment or self-condemnation
  25. A good idea to halt all activity for one hour some day
  26. We should use the Bible every day
  27. Come ye yourselves apart … and rest awhile (Mark 6:31)
  28. God does not change
  29. See the conquest and believe that we can gain the victory
  30. Not holding back and getting out of darkness
  31. A New Perspective
  32. The Paradigm of Instinct, Intuition and Intention
  33. Being Religious and Spiritual 7 Transcendence to become one
  34. Looking for True Spirituality 2 Not restricted to an elite
  35. Looking for True Spirituality 8 Measuring Up
  36. How long to wait before bringing religiousness and spirituality in practice
  37. Points to remember of philosophy versus spirituality and religion
  38. Our relationship with God, Jesus and eachother
  39. Nothing can stop the man with the right mental attitude from achieving his goal
  40. Try driving forward instead of backwards
  41. Life is like a ten-speed bike.
  42. Suffering produces perseverance

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  • Chris Packham: Malta is a bird hell (theguardian.com)
    When Chris Packham announced he was heading to Malta to report on the island’s annual spring bird shoot as if he was a war correspondent covering a conflict, even his admirers probably thought he was guilty of hyperbole.But after a week in which the naturalist has detained by police for five hours, shoved to the ground by gunmen and witnessed the illegal killing of dozens of endangered birds, his mission to raise awareness of the annual slaughter of migratory birds has been more like a battle than he imagined.
  • Iroquois National Wildlife Refuge (gardenwalkgardentalk.com)
    Since Earth Day just passed, I was thinking why can’t everyday be Earth Day? You visit places like this and wonder why can’t there be more wild spaces to enjoy. After all, without these wild and natural spaces, we would not have much of a world.
  • Birds Slam Into Windows, Leave Long Island Couple Lying Awake (newyork.cbslocal.com)
    It has been a full week of rude awakenings for a Long Island couple, who said their home has been under siege by a group of birds slamming into their windows over and over again.As CBS 2’s Elise Finch reported Monday, the problem that Peter and Lisa Kersich of Holbrook have been experiencing is common at this time of year.The loud thumps have been waking them up morning after morning.
  • Fly like a bird (lovingmefirstblog.wordpress.com)
    1) how do we know the bird hasn’t flown (are we worried about other’s achievements more than our own and we view this bird as a solitary soul who hasn’t taken the leap of faith?)
    2) what if the bird has flown but it feels most comfortable where it sits now? (maybe the world isn’t as amazing as we think it is)
    3) what if the bird is hurt, alone, lost or perhaps needs a push?
  • Dream-Like Song Created From Birds Perched On Electric Wires Proves Nature Is Perfect (fromthetrenchesworldreport.com)
    “Reading the newspaper one morning, I saw this picture of birds on the electric wires,” says video creator Jarbas Agnelli.”I cut out the photo and decided to make a song, using the exact location of the birds as notes. I was just curious to hear what melody the birds were creating.”
  • Garden Birds – Indigo Bunting (roadsendnaturalist.wordpress.com)
    If, as Thoreau says, the bluebird carries the sky on its back, the Indigo Bunting may sometimes be carrying storm clouds. These common open space birds are now arriving back in NC from their tropical winter homes and the males have dressed for the occasion.
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    I see them every year along the power line corridor, but I hope to spend a little more time this summer listening for their distinctive calls (the male sings all day, even in the heat of summer) and enjoying their brilliant blue attire.
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    Garden Birds – Blue-gray Gnatcatcher
    I often describe these active birds as looking and behaving like a tiny mockingbird. They are always fun to watch as they hop through the branches, or hover beneath one, snatching an insect meal. And their small size, white eye ring, blue-gray coloration, and exaggerated tail, make them easy to identify.
  • Not Just Sparrows and Pigeons: Cities Harbor 20 Percent of World’s Bird Species (allaboutbirds.org)
    Rock Pigeons, House Sparrows, and European Starlings are widely known as “city birds,” and with good reason. These three species (plus Barn Swallow) occur in more than 80 percent of cities according to the first-ever global study of biodiversity in urban areas, published earlier this year in Proceedings of the Royal Society B. But there’s more to cities than this narrow cast of avian urbanites: cities also retain more of their region’s native diversity than previously thought, according to the study’s analyses of bird and plant census data. So take heart, your next city stroll has much more to offer than just a few ubiquitous species.In fact, at least 2,041 species—20 percent of all known bird species—live in the world’s cities, according to the research. Unlike previous studies, which have focused on single cities or regions, this study spanned six continents, compiling data on birds from 54 cities and plants from 110 cities. The researchers themselves hailed from North America, Europe, Australia, and South Africa.
  • Look to the skies to spot the bounty of birds returning to Saskatchewan (metronews.ca)
    This is likely the most exciting time to cast our eyes upward and behold some of the beauty we take for granted in the skies.The birds that soar above are not here by chance. Indeed, it is of their own will that they come back to Saskatchewan.
  • Two Birds 114/365 Side A (theyearofdreamingdangerouslymardilinane2014.wordpress.com)
    two birds / floated over / the canyon / floated in circles
  • 10 Incredible Bird Photography Tips for Beginners (digital-photography-school.com)
    What is the most important factor in getting your bird photographs noticed by a large audience? Is it the camera or the lens or the bird?

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Filed under Being and Feeling, Economical affairs, Knowledge & Wisdom, Lifestyle, Social affairs, Spiritual affairs