This ECC was a ‘serious’ one, in that it did not revolve around surreal agglomerations of pop culture references. But that doesn’t mean it was particularly dark & gritty. I was looking to invoke how Christmas feels to a child, in its joys and in its difficulties.  ———————————————————–
The weekly spelling quiz was canceled for the Christmas party. That, more than the party itself, made Chris’ day.  The party wasn’t much.   Mrs Morris brought in cupcakes, white frosting over chocolate with green crystals on top.  Every kid in the class got one and ate it at their desk, arranged in a ring around the tiny Christmas tree in front of the blackboard.  Joey Smith scooped all the frosting off his with his tongue and let it hang there, showing it to everyone, until Mrs Morris made him stop. Read More

Maybe we’ve got this ass backwards. Maybe, on the Judgement Day, we will be doing the judging.

That is, God will allow us a taste of his omniscience, just enough for us to see everything we have ever thought and done, in context, to feel empirically all the effect we had on the world, to honestly see ourselves for the first time. We will judge ourselves.

Practically all of us will elect for damnation, of course.

And the task of Jesus, the Savior, will be to talk us out of it.

Dishonesty is not one of the Seven Deadly Sins.

Nor is it forbidden in the Decalogue. Now “Thou shalt not bear false witness against thy neighbor” is traditionally interpreted as forbidding lying, but that requires a skooch. There’s no nice and direct “Thou shalt not lie.”

The reason it bugs me is that, once you’ve noticed it, it seems almost premeditated. Deliberately leaving a loophole. Like the codifiers were nervous about cutting off too completely the option of deceit.

I used to think Pride was the root of all sins, since it requires putting one’s own wants before all other things. I guess that from a psychological viewpoint, one could still make a case for that, but it ignores that fact that some great sinners have been very humble people, thinking all for their causes and never for themselves. In practice, lying is often the first sin. The addict who says they don’t know where that wallet went. The spouse who neglects to say just how much time they’ve been spending with the co-worker. Lies provide a cover for other sins to grow, until such time as those sins are too large to conceal, and the initial lie can be discarded like a husk.

Where condemnation of lying really sticks out is in Revelation. I don’t know what happened to John of Patmos, but he makes sure to stress that “and all liars” are among the eternally damned. I think somebody hurt him bad once, lied and broke his heart. That’s what lies do.

Regardless of what might be down on paper, God sees our lies and the hurt they cause, and He remembers.

The world is terrifying.

So we must hope for God to stand beside us in defiance

Except that to the extent that God is the world, God is terrifying

So we must hope for a space between God & the world, a honey canyon where we may thrive.

God first appears as Ancient of Days, judge and geometer,

And then as Cthulhu, honest and annihilating,

And then as Dharma, quiet and pervasive,

And finally as God, God as God, unspeakable and loving.

Praise be to the honey space we are granted! Praise be to the nonday it shall be given to us! Madhutheodoros, let it fall upon us when we least expect it.

One doesn’t want to get all Terence McKenna (may he rest in peace) about it, but I can see finding God through hallucinogens.

It’s a question of substance.

If you come to me and say “Dude, I’ve been taking a lot of acid, and the Horned One came to me and said there is no good or evil, and what’s in my heart is the only true reality,”

then I’m gonna say “You might want to do a reboot on that.”

But if you come to me and say “Dude, I’ve been taking a lot of acid, and I realized all things in this world are interconnected, and beyond that interconnection stands a Rainbow Curtain that is both that interconnection and the umbilical cord to which that interconnection is connected,”

then I’m gonna say “I think you’re onto something.”

Most folks’ experiences will fall between these poles, natch.

Immediately upon entering into prayer, my head and body will by God’s grace transform into flowers, my head a cabbage rose, my eyes black-eyed susans and my ears daisies, my digits pansies and posies, my limbs lilacs and rhododendrons, my torso a mass of dogwood blossoms, and my tongue and very words made a torrent of tiger lily blades, pouring forth in pentecostal fire, praising God. In joy shall I begin, in joy shall I complete, in joy my going forth and in joy my return, and all this by and for God’s glory.

The world is a procrustean bed, and we find ourselves fitted to it. In the end, we shall all be judged by forces far out of our opinion or control, whether active (God, gods or dharma) or passive (an ironclad materialism).

Addendum to the predicate: No matter what the ultimate Truth of the universe, the vast majority of people are wrong. Considering how fragmented is human opinion, with no religion or philosophy having even a strong plurality, most people must be following what would, given some moment of ultimate reckoning, be shown as a wrong path.