A Review: Akron ArtWalk, September 5, 2015
1 year ago
...We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness--That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, that whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness... - The Declaration of Independence of the Thirteen Colonies, united States of America
Thomas Jefferson was so convicted that the pursuit of happiness was an inalienable human right that he wrote it into the Declaration of Independence and called it a self-evident truth. But Christians have this to add: those who pursue happiness never find it. Because joy and peace are extremely elusive, happiness is a will-o'-the-wisp, a phantom, and even if we reach out our hand to grasp it, it vanishes into thin air. God gives joy and peace not to those who pursue them but to those who pursue Him and strive to love. Joy and peace are found in loving and nowhere else. -- John Stott
Across the country, federal, state, and local officials...are trying to figure out how the United States would cope with a killer flu, one that would be very different from the usual influenza that strikes each winter. A global epidemic, or pandemic, would be caused by a new, lethal flu virus, one to which people would have no immunity. The new flu would spread around the world within weeks and could infect one third of all people, killing 1 to 5 percent of them. That's what happened in 1918, when the Spanish flu killed 25 million in six months; some historians place the total killed at 100 million. Since then, two other far less lethal flu pandemics, in 1957 and 1968, have swept the globe...
Flu viruses are notoriously good at mutating into new strains, and sooner or later one will morph into a mass killer. No one can say when that will happen; scientists say it could be this year, or 20 years from now. But in recent months normally sanguine health officials have been making increasingly dire predictions of a nightmarish 1918-style assault, one that could kill up to 2.2 million people in the United States. "We at WHO believe that the world is now in the gravest possible danger of a pandemic," says Shigeru Omi, Western Pacific regional leader for the World Health Organization. Those words echo Julie Gerberding, director of the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, who called the current situation "a very high threat."
The doctors are spooked by the continuing outbreaks of a new strain of avian influenza that has sickened at least 69 people and killed 46 in Vietnam, Thailand, and Cambodia in the past 16 months. One more death, of a 26-year-old man in Cambodia, was reported last week, and Vietnamese authorities are investigating a village where a 5-year-old fell ill with the disease in mid-March, shortly after his 13-year-old sister died. This new virus, called H5N1, is from the same family as the killer 1918 strain. Flu typically kills the old and weak, but with the new flu, most of the victims have been healthy young people. The 1918 flu killed the young and healthy, too.
The doctors are alarmed not because of the number of people that "bird flu" has killed but because the H5N1 virus displays an ominous adaptability and persistence. About 70 percent of those infected so far have died. Since 1997, when the new virus first showed up in chickens and killed six people in Hong Kong, it has spread to birds in eight countries in the region despite repeated efforts to halt it by slaughtering millions of chickens.
[((9+ 9 + 9) x (10 - 1)) / 20] x 9 x 1 / (1 - sin (9 / 10))
which is, [((27) x (9)) / 20] x 9 x [1 / (1 - .01571)
which is, (109.35) / [1 / (.98429)]
which equals roughly 107.63219024371
1 Surely God is good to Israel,
to those who are pure in heart.
2 But as for me, my feet had almost slipped;
I had nearly lost my foothold.
3 For I envied the arrogant
when I saw the prosperity of the wicked.
4 They have no struggles;
their bodies are healthy and strong.
5 They are free from the burdens common to man;
they are not plagued by human ills....
20 As a dream when one awakes,
so when you arise, O Lord,
you will despise them as fantasies.
21 When my heart was grieved
and my spirit embittered,
22 I was senseless and ignorant;
I was a brute beast before you.
23 Yet I am always with you;
you hold me by my right hand.
24 You guide me with your counsel,
and afterward you will take me into glory.
25 Whom have I in heaven but you?
And earth has nothing I desire besides you.
26 My flesh and my heart may fail,
but God is the strength of my heart
and my portion forever.
27 Those who are far from you will perish;
you destroy all who are unfaithful to you.
28 But as for me, it is good to be near God.
I have made the Sovereign LORD my refuge;
I will tell of all your deeds.
- Psalm 73
Of the seven deadly sins, only envy is no fun at all. Sloth may not seem much fun, nor anger either, but giving way to deep laziness has its pleasures and anger entails a release that is not without its small delights. In recompense, envy may be the subtlest - perhaps I should say the most insidious - of the seven deadly sins. Surely it is one that people are least likely to want to own up to, for to do so is to admit that one is probably ungenerous, mean, small hearted... - Joseph Epstein, Envy: The Seven Deadly Sins
Jesus. No greater following, no greater message. Made the ultimate sacrifice, accomplished the mission, and went home. -- Chance, 34; response to "Give an example of a great leader" in an article about leadership in last month's Men's Health
Truthfulness is one more invisible fiber that holds people together in humane community. When we cannot assume that people communicating with us are truthful, we cannot live with them in trust that they will respect our right to freedom to respond to reality. If we cannot trust each other to respect this basic right, we have lost our chance to be human together in God's manner. Therefore, when God sounds the trumpet for truthfulness, he summons us to live humanly; he provides a survival guideline for community. This makes his command an intrinsically reasonable one.... Generalized formulas for 'just' lies seldom work. In another time, perhaps, people could be more flexible and less stringent. In our age when deceit threatens every area of our society, the last word must be: Speak the truth, be the truth, for your truth sets others free. -- Lewis Smedes, Mere Morality
1. You can have a physical relationship with someone w/o actually "dating" that person.
2. You can have an emotional relationship with someone w/o actually "dating" that person.
3. You don't need to be "dating" someone to realize the potential for problems to develop if either person were to become interested in someone else.
Conclusion: A relationship is not defined the moment we place a label on that relationship. Rather, it is defined by our actions, thoughts, motives, and attitudes. God knows our hearts. He said, "If you love me, you will obey my commandments." -- An unsigned note I found in one of my college days folders. Wish I knew who it was from so I could thank them for their truthfulness.
The worst moment for the atheist is when he is really thankful and has nobody to thank. -- Dante Rossetti
What happens when we're dead? The irony is that all our questions will be answered after we die. We spend our whole life trying to figure out the truth and the only way we'll find out what it is, is to get hit by a bus. And the only comfort that religion offers is that God is driving that bus. -- John Ryman, When Galaxies Collide
You were lookin' for that third three, but you forgot that Professor Green folded on Fourth Street and now you're representing that you have it. The DA made his two pair, but he knows they're no good. Judge Kaplan was trying to squeeze out a diamond flush but he came up short and Mr. Eisen is futilely hoping that his queens are going to stand up. So like I said, the Dean's bet is $20. -- Mike McDermott, Rounders
Take population growth. For 50 years, the demographers in charge of human population projections for the United Nations released hard numbers that substantiated environmentalists greatest fears about indefinite exponential population increase. For a while, those projections proved fairly accurate. However, in the 1990s, the U.N. started taking a closer look at fertility patterns, and in 2002, it adopted a new theory that shocked many demographers: human population is leveling off rapidly, even precipitously, in developed countries, with the rest of the world soon to follow. Most environmentalists still haven't got the word. Worldwide, birthrates are in free fall. Around one-third of countries now have birthrates below replacement level (2.1 children per woman) and sinking. Nowhere does the downward trend show signs of leveling off. Nations already in a birth dearth crisis include Japan, Italy, Spain, Germany, and Russiawhose population is now in absolute decline and is expected to be 30 percent lower by 2050. On every part of every continent and in every culture (even Mormon), birthrates are headed down. They reach replacement level and keep on dropping. It turns out that population decrease accelerates downward just as fiercely as population increase accelerated upward, for the same reason. Any variation from the 2.1 rate compounds over time.(emphasis mine)
Thats great news for environmentalists (or it will be when finally noticed), but they need to recognize what caused the turnaround. The world population growth rate actually peaked at 2 percent way back in 1968, the very year my old teacher Paul Ehrlich published The Population Bomb. The worlds women didnt suddenly have fewer kids because of his book, though. They had fewer kids because they moved to town.
Cities are population sinks-always have been. Although more children are an asset in the countryside, theyre a liability in the city. A global tipping point in urbanization is what stopped the population explosion. As of this year, 50 percent of the worlds population lives in cities, with 61 percent expected by 2030. In 1800 it was 3 percent; in 1900 it was 14 percent.
The environmentalist aesthetic is to love villages and despise cities. My mind got changed on the subject a few years ago by an Indian acquaintance who told me that in Indian villages the women obeyed their husbands and family elders, pounded grain, and sang. But, the acquaintance explained, when Indian women immigrated to cities, they got jobs, started businesses, and demanded their children be educated. They became more independent, as they became less fundamentalist in their religious beliefs. Urbanization is the most massive and sudden shift of humanity in its history.
In Acts 17:26-27 the apostle Paul observes: "...he determined the times set for them and the exact places where they should live. God did this so men would seek him and perhaps reach out for him and find him." Viewed in light of these verses, explosive city growth in our century is not something to be perceived as the work of the devil, but as part of God's providential plan in history. God's redemptive purpose behind urban growth is that 'men should seek him and reach out for him.' By means of these enormous gatherings of people, God provides the church with one of history's greatest opportunities. Pressed together in metropolises, the races, tribes, and diverse people groups are geographically more accessible than ever before. God in our time is moving climactically through a variety of social, political, and economic factors to bring earth's peoples into closer contact with one another, into greater interaction and interdependence, and into earshot of the gospel. By this movement God carries forward his redemptive purpose in history. A sign of our time is the city.
All these people were still living by faith when they died. They did not receive the things promised; they only saw them and welcomed them from a distance. And they admitted that they were aliens and strangers on earth. People who say such things show that they are looking for a country of their own. If they had been thinking of the country they had left, they would have had opportunity to return. Instead, they were longing for a better country - a heavenly one. Therefore God is not ashamed to be called their God, for he has prepared a city for them. -- Hebrews 11:13-16
Christians are not distinguished from the rest of humanity by country, speech, or dress. For they do not dwell in cities of their own, nor use a different language, nor practice an eccentric lifestyle. But while they follow the customs of the land in clothing and food and other matters of daily life, they exhibit the remarkable and unusual character of their own citizenship. Every foreign country is to them a homeland, and every motherland is a foreign country. They marry like everyone else, but they do not throw out their offspring as some do. They share their table with all but not their bed with all. They live upon the earth, but their citizenship is in heaven. They obey the established laws, but in their private lives they surpass what the laws require. They love everyone, but are persecuted by all. They are abused, but they bless. They are insulted, but repay insult with honor. They are poor, but make many rich. They have nothing, yet abound in everything. In a word, what the soul is to the body, Christians are to the world. - Letter to Diognetus c.100-150 A.D
It is here, at a pool of 18 726 acceptable females, that we end our statistical analysis. At first glance, a datable population of 18 726 may not seem like such a low number, but consider this: assuming I were to go on a blind date with a new girl about my age every week, I would have to date for 3493 weeks before I found one of the 18 726. That's very nearly 67 years. As a North American male born in the late 1970s, my life expectancy is probably little more than 70 years, so we can safely say that I will be quite dead before I find the proverbial girl of my dreams. Come to think of it, she'll probably be dead too.