Friday, June 19, 2009


Plans, schmans

Apparently, it was *not* the Lord's will that I:

1. Be able to do the one hour of work I had to do today from home, preferring, rather, that I spend two hours *trying* to do said work before giving up on my work laptop working, then having to go into the office anyway.

2. Get some serious yard work started, let alone done.

3. Feel well this afternoon, because I don't.

4. Go to three seminars tomorrow on Orthodox Christianity, because now I have to do yard work.

On the other hand, I think I will be able to go the Orthodox lecture tonight, which is the main one I wanted to hear anyway, which seemed to have been dashed when I thought work-work was going to delay the yard work, which would have kept me from going to the church, that is, until I got to feeling puny and didn't even start the yard work.

So, I reckon it could be that what the Lord wanted was for me to go this thing tonight, and it took a p.o.s. work computer, then my feeling unwell this afternoon, to make it happen.

But I doubt it.



Having lost Satan to modern times, nonetheless it may not be well intentioned activity in the cosmos that is interfering in your higher order plans.

I'll tell you one thing for sure: yardwork never came between a New Yorker and anything.
Here's tonight's speaker's take on Eastern Orthodoxy. I will admit up front that my initial response is to balk at any claims to exclusivity.
Also, while in one breath, he insists that neither what one believes about God, nor how one feels about God, effects salvation (points with which I agree), his claim that the "one true doctrine" is the "one true doctrine" seems to be a contradiction only slightly ameliorated by his insistence that one must mystically experience the Living God rather than one's own mediated intellectual or emotional concepts of God -- because, like it or not, that is a proposition to which one must intellectually assent and toward which one will have an emotional response!

So he's not talking about Orthodoxy.

He's talking about his obsession with Orthodoxy.
I was wrong. That was one of Saturday's speakers. Both are converts to Orthodoxy, so are rather evangelical.

A fellow member of my leftish Congregational UCC church was there Friday night, and shared a pew with me. Neither of us heard anything we disagreed with in the introductory lecture, which will be the only one for me, since i do have to get this dang place in order.


Original sin is more of a spiritual health issue than moral failing. Agreed.

None of the well-known concepts of atonement quite fit: not ransom, satisfaction, sunstitution, etc. Rather, God saves us to heal us, and the life and death of Jesus, melding God's Godness and humanity's humanness, makes that mystically possible, the point being to draw us closer to God and to one another -- "so that they may be as one," and so on. And it's dynamic, not ststic, and transformastive, not juridical.

A very much more communal experience and concept, this here Eastern soteriology. My fellow church member and I agreed that it would surprise many of our fellow churchmen and churchwimmin to learn that the views and ideas of many of themselves are so close to Orthodox thinking.

It ain't about me, in other words. It's about all of us.
Funny, but those main points sound very close to, ahem, United Methodist teachings. Of course, Wesley read wide and deep on the Eastern side of the Church divide, especially the early Orthodox Fathers, the Cappadocians, etc.

Yard work, too, has its place in the scheme of things.
What they are not very close to are fundamentalist "teachings" or modern Baptist teachings, which is what e mostly got around hre in this reddest of states, which is red in religion as well as politics. Sad to note that chsnces are most of the peeps at the lectures actually won't be surprised to hear much of what is said, while those for whom it would require, or spark, a radical paradigm shoft, won't be in there, seeing no need to hear an alternative view, since, you know, they already KNOW "the truth."

Fie. Ya know, if think ya gots all the answers, just knock yerselfs out! (Neil, EL, et al.) :-)
BTW, I like to got, um, slain in the Spirit awhile ago out int he yard. Well, I almost blacked out anyway. Now, having ingested sustenance and soft drink, am headed back into the suburban inferno!
"...his insistence that one must mystically experience the Living God..."

Shrooms are a portal.
ER, have you ever thought about visiting the Native American Church in your neighborhood?
I would love to "do" the Native American Church, if I were invited and could do it "right."
I know from personal experience that phentermine, pent-up grief and Keith Green music at high decibels can serve as a portal.
The only good portal is one where after you enter and turn around the portal is gone. Thus you have to wander the landscape until you find a way back. Some called that madness.
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