The Religion of Environmentalism

This is a post I wrote in another forum:

Here is another article that I think you should all read. It is, again, a lecture by Michael Crichton. He says a lot of really good things in there that I really like and he said a few things that I did disagree with. Being a very rational, scientific person I liked that he pointed out that science and religion should not be the same but I did not like that he thought that they were mutually exclusive. I did think his analogy of Environmentalism to religion was somewhat fitting.

His article is about Environmentalism and how it is pretty off base. He parallels it with religions belief as it is based in faith and not fact (which is something that I don’t really agree with when it comes to Christianity as I think both fact and faith are extremely crucial, but his parallel still has value.) Here is something he said towards the end of the article:

How will we manage to get environmentalism out of the clutches of religion, and back to a scientific discipline? There’s a simple answer: we must institute far more stringent requirements for what constitutes knowledge in the environmental realm. I am thoroughly sick of politicized so-called facts that simply aren’t true. It isn’t that these “facts” are exaggerations of an underlying truth. Nor is it that certain organizations are spinning their case to present it in the strongest way. Not at all—what more and more groups are doing is putting out is lies, pure and simple. Falsehoods that they know to be false.

Now he is not saying that religion is bad in this article, he is saying the religion of environmentalism is bad.

I know it is another long article, but I think that both of his lectures are quite interesting and have a lot of great things to say and talk about. I like to read so I definitely enjoyed hearing his thoughts. I would love to hear what you all think about his stuff.

Here is the link

Now, I do believe not only that science and religion are not mutually exclusive, but indeed they really are mutually inclusive. Although, while mutually inclusive, they are not the same and cannot be defined in the same terms. One thing that pisses me off so much about secular (and often Christian) writers/scientists/whatevers is that they either completely have Christianity and science at opposing ends of a big fight or they try to equate one with the other. Science supports Christianity (and the other way around) and that is an amazing thing and it seems people always want to either ignore it or not give it enough credit.

Hope you are listening!
Shalom

EDITOR’S NOTE: This post is from a previous blog so the original comments no longer exist.

Aliens Cause Global Warming

Yes, that is right, they do. Well, ok, maybe indirectly. This is actually a serious article (actually a lecture) by Michael Crichton. Everyone should go read all of this: Aliens Cause Global Warming.

I thought this was pretty insightful.

Quoted from somwhere else by a friend:
“I think that this is an excellent article and an excellent insight, but I also think that Crichton is overly optimistic about the past of scientific endeavor. Sientists are people, and people are not objective beings. Now, we can train oursxelves to be more objective, but at the very point that you begin to claim pure objectivity-which scientists have been prone to from the beginning of science-you betray a big ole blind spot. ”

Many of the topics raised I think are interesting things to research, such as the search for ET, but I think the problem that arises is that people become blinded by what they are looking into. Ideally we should all be completly objective, but it doesn’t always work like that. If someone starts to call themself completly objective (which I think a lot of really intense scientists often do, possibly evolutionists…. another issue completly) they are fooling themselves, the scientific community, and the (often ignorant) genearal public who have no reason to think the scientists AREN’T completly objective. It seems that policy can often come from those who consider themselves completly objective but really have no (or little) clue about what they are talking about. Science should be left to scientists and policy should be left to policy makers. The former should inform the latter but not the other way around.

Anyone read it and have any thoughts?
Shalom

EDITOR’S NOTE: This post is from a previous blog so the original comments no longer exist.

SPU Here I come??

I found out today that I have also been accepted to Seattle Pacific University’s Masters in Teaching program. I have decided that I will be going to Regent first for two years and then come back and go to SPU for the masters and teaching certificate.

The way I found out was somewhat unexpected. I had an interview today with the director that would determine if I would be accepted or not. The interview was going along, I was telling her about me and why I want to be a teacher, etc… Because her graduate student helper person is away she hadn’t had time to look at my file (she actually got the file during the interview). After we had talked for a while she took some time to look over my file and read my letters of recommendation and then said “just so you know, you have been accepted to the program.” Doesn’t that seem a little strange? It was right in the middle of the interview! It kind of caught me off guard, but was very cool. Either she really liked what I had to say or my letters of rec were REALLY good. Either way I was happy. Luckily she did ask about me applying to other schools and I was able to tell her about Regent. I said that I would probably be going up to Regent first and then reapply to SPU in two years. She just said that she would love to have me in the program and work with her and that if it sounded like Regent would also be a good thing and would hope that I will be back after that.

Needless to say, it was somewhat of an ego-booster today. Shalom

EDITOR’S NOTE: This post is from a previous blog so the original comments no longer exist.

Regent here I come!

I have decided to make it official. I will be heading to Regent College in the fall! If you want to check them out go here: regent-college.edu They are definitely an awesome place to be. Not to be a name dropper but Regent has such amazing professors as Gordon Fee (“How to read the Bible for all it’s worth”, General Editor and contributor for the New International Commentary on the New Testament, member of the Comittee on Bible Translation which produced “Today’s New International Version” a revision of the NIV, and many other great books, great speaker), James Houston (“The Transforming Power of Prayer”), J.I. Packer, Rikk Watts (“Isaiah’s New Exodus in Mark”, great speaker), Iain Provin, John Stackhouse, and of course Eugene Peterson (“A Long Obedience in the Same Direction”, “The Message”, and many other amazing books.) and a long list of others! I don’t really like to name drop, but I am just really excited!

Now I just need to figure out how all of this is going to happen! I need to find a way to pay for this and I need to find housing up in Canada. It is also going to be really hard for me too because I really don’t want to leave Khristine. She and I both know it is what I need to do but that doesn’t make it any easier. I guess I will just be spending a lot of money on gas!

Ok, I started writing this about 2 hours ago so have nothing else to say right now! Shalom

EDITOR’S NOTE: This post is from a previous blog so the original comments no longer exist.

4:00 am

Here I am at work at 4:00am. It is very strange to be working so early in the morning. I am working over-nights this week so I go to bed at around 5:30 and wake up in the afternoon. Even though I know I should sleep late, I still, for some reason, feel guilty when waking at at 2 in the afternoon!

I guess my cousin had her baby last night at around 8:00pm. That is way cool and I really look forward to seeing him!

Today in Bible study we talked about what it means to be a Christian in the fallen world. It was a pretty interesting discussion dealing with how we relate to both Christians and non-Christians. Should their be boundaries surround activities you do with your non-Christian friends (such as seeing “bad” movies), should you not listen to certain music, should you not say certain things? This was interesting because on a Christian message board that I frequent, something of this nature came up. I had called Alex Rodriguez a “putz” and it was censored. This struck me as being odd as “putz” isn’t even being very harsh and I even see it as being more jocular compared to calling someone a moron. The reason that was given to me was that someone was offended by the word. Now I should be sensitive to other people and as was pointed out to me, Romans 14.1-4 states:

Accept him whose faith is weak, without passing judgment on disputable matters. {2} One man’s faith allows him to eat everything, but another man, whose faith is weak, eats only vegetables. {3} The man who eats everything must not look down on him who does not, and the man who does not eat everything must not condemn the man who does, for God has accepted him. {4} Who are you to judge someone else’s servant? To his own master he stands or falls. And he will stand, for the Lord is able to make him stand.

This is completely correct and should always be followed. That being said, shouldn’t there be a point in a Christian’s life where they have to grow up and mature beyond the point at getting offended by such silly things? Now “silly” is a relative term and something that seems silly to be is obviously not necessarily silly to someone else. But still, Christians should always be spurring each other on to grown in their faith and that means to focus on what is important which is living for God and loving those around us.

I guess that is somewhat of a digression, but oh well. I have to get back to work for another hour so that is all for now.

Shalom

EDITOR’S NOTE: This post is from a previous blog so the original comments no longer exist.

Am I Open Minded?

I was reading sisterzion’s blog today (There is no God.) and it was dealing with questions coming from non-believers. “What if you die and find out there is no God” was the specific question being asked. These types of questions are often used to get us to question our faith (which can be a good thing) and turn us to another path (which is often less good…). The annoying thing about these questions is not in “having” to explain your faith (because that can be a powerful witness) but in that the person asking cannot often answer the opposite question (ie. What if you die and find out there IS a God?). Generally it seems (yes I know, not always) that if you start to question someone’s religion (YES, religion) of non-belief you will often be labeled a closed-minded Christian and therefore have no input or rational opinions on any matter from then on. Yes I know I am over stating things a bit, but you get the point.

This brings me the the issue at hand: being open-minded. This is an issue that I am very passionate about and can get very pissed off at people over. There seems to be a huge double-standard when it comes to dealing with beliefs. If you have strong beliefs in something that disagree with what I believe, you are closed minded. Whereas whatever I believe in, I will always be open minded. You will only become open-minded when you disavow what you hold to be truth and start believing what I hold to be truth. Again, I know I am overstating things, but it is to make a point.

It seems that the only people that are always open-minded are those who say they don’t really believe in anything, which, to me, is a crock in itself as in order to not believe in ANYTHING, you are placing belief and trust and faith in that. (You may take note here that I am not the most PC person in the world. I will generally tell it like it is and I am sorry if that offends you, I generally think people are too sensitive and just need to be real with themselves and others.) The moment anyone has any conviction about anything, they are immediately branded as closed-minded (this doesn’t just apply to Christians). What non-Christians need to understand is that just because we have strong beliefs in something, that doesn’t mean we will not listen to anything else. And just because we believe you are wrong, just as you believe about us, that does not mean we are passing judgement on you. The world is a depraved place, Christians and non-Christians sin, that is the result of being a fallen people. We are taught to love the sinner and hate the sin, if a Christian is not doing that than they have issues to deal with on their own. Now just because I am not passing judgement doesn’t mean that I wouldn’t want you to question what you believe, just as you would do to me.

Truth is NOT relative as much as many would like to believe, and they are completely free to believe it, that doesn’t mean that they aren’t wrong. Being open-minded doesn’t mean that everything has to be valid and true, it means that you respect that others hold different beliefs. Yes, I pray that my non-Christian friends would become Christian because I know it to be truth. You may disagree with that, and you are free to do that, you may still be wrong. You can just as easily say the same thing about me, I could be wrong, but if you were to tell me that I have to change my beliefs because I don’t allow for other truths, you would be the closed-minded one. To truly be open-minded you have to allow for the fact that others will have different beliefs and that is fine. I still think I am right, as do you. Many people would love for truth to be relative because that way you don’t have to tell people they are wrong, it would be very nice, but unfortunately, I don’t believe that is the way things really are. I guess we shall see in the end.

Ok, I think I am starting to ramble a bit, once again. I am sure there are things I meant to say but forgot. I am sure I will remember them sometime..

Shalom

EDITOR’S NOTE: This post is from a previous blog so the original comments no longer exist.

A Satisfied Mind…

So as seems popular with me these last few days, I was listening to the Kill Bill soundtrack (Both Vol have awesome music) and Johnny Cash’s song jumped out at me (as his songs usually do).

“A Satisfied Mind”

How many times have
You heard someone say
If I had his money
I could do things my way

But little they know
That it’s so hard to find
One rich man in ten
With a satisfied mind

Once I was waitin’
In fortune and fame
Everything that I dreamed for
To get a start in life’s game

Then suddenly it happened
I lost every dime
But I’m richer by far
With a satisfied mind

Money can’t buy back
Your youth when you’re old
Or a friend when you’re lonely
Or a love that’s grown cold

The wealthiest person
Is a pauper at times
Compared to the man
With a satisfied mind

When my life has ended
And my time has run out
My friends and my loved ones
I’ll leave there’s no doubt

But one thing’s for certain
When it comes my time
I’ll leave this old world
With a satisfied mind

How many times have
You heard someone say
If I had his money
I could do things my way

But little they know
That it’s so hard to find
One rich man in ten
With a satisfied mind

Very cool song I think. So I pose this, what gives you a satisfied mind? Is it something you can stay with or does it come and go?

EDITOR’S NOTE: This post is from a previous blog so the original comments no longer exist.

Why am I here?

Sorry, this isn’t meant to be some huge deep, meaningful blog. Merely a reflection on why this blog is here at all. Quite frankly, I don’t know. Chances are, no one will ever read this anyway. I generally don’t write anything down as I hate to write, but I don’t mind typing so much, so here I am, possibly getting some of my thoughts down in 1s and 0s.

I suppose I should offer a reason for the particular posting name: Matt comes from Hebrew. מתתיָהוּ (Mattithyahu) literally meaning “gift of Yah” Yah being the contracted version of יחוח Yhvh (Yehovah, Yahveh, Yahweh) translated as the proper name of the God of Israel.

I guess that is all I have for this particular second, I am sure Iwill be back with more. That is if I remember that I set this thing up…

Shalom

EDITOR’S NOTE: This post is from a previous blog so the original comments no longer exist.