-May 23 16
Want watermelon? Go to the store. Buy a watermelon. Go to McDonald's and ask for a knife. A small plastic knife will do. Cut into the middle of the watermelon. And go all around the middle, such that when you are done you have two pieces. Really go deep to make this happen. Find a nice spot overlooking the summer day with your yums. Eat with whatever utensils are at hand, if nothing is available just use your hands. Throw what is left of your watermelon (it is unlikely you'll be able to finish the whole thing) into the bog. Wait a few minutes, watch the birds gather to talk about the humans who have violated their airspace.
Hold your inflated belly and pose on the hood of the car for your photo. Great things happen in the seven. These kinds of things wouldn't happen without you! I'm so glad they doooooooooo happenn! So fortunateeeee to have youuu.
-May 13, 2016
Apparently these are the kinds of texts you send someone if you want to make them laugh.
my plans were pretty shit too. gordon ramsay didn't even show up.
i guess that's the lesson.
kingmaker vineeth. organizing things so his sweets can't come.
also made other plans.
such a shitty kingmaker couldn't organize visit between you and my busy bee Boron brethren at an earlier date. and so the "one time i make a king" i am apparently inconsiderate about you showing up.
and so i don't know how to be a person. and so i'm not. and so i've never been people. so it goes.
i'm lost in the world right now. but that's okay.
and apparently when you're visible upset at me i'm "not even bothered"
and also if i show i am bothered and i care if you are visibly upset, i should know better than for us to be in that situation to start with.
let's not talk so seriously over text again.
You know what she says about dramatic texts?
What does she say?
They put her to sleep.
-May 8. 2016.
Selections from Yunus Emre: The Wandering Fool, Sufi Poems of a Thirteenth-century Turkish Dervish, Translated from the Turkish by Edouard Roditi, Cadmus Editions, 1987.
Then a fly collided with an eagle
and cast it down to the ground.
I'm no liar and all this is true,
with my own eyes I see the dust rise.
I wrestled with a paralytic
who clasped with no hands my foot,
but I couldn't yet master him
so he set fire to my essence
Listen to Yunus, listen to him,
he's mad again of course.
If I've dived deep into the knowledge
of the initiates, well, what more?
Friends, tell me where to go
and tell me what to do,
what to foresee
and what more to gain.
This idol grows in my soul
and grips my heart quite fast
bringing me consolation:
to what else can I be bound?
Such a spell has she cast upon me
I can no longer tell yesterday from today:
let her take me body and soul.
Can I ever take offense?
I'm the goldsmith, she's my gold.
I'm a slave and she's my Sultana.
She's my mind, my soul and my heart:
why should I ever weary of her?
To be without her, I feel, is a sin,
for she ensures my credit.
So much sweetness and so much good,
where else can I find or hear them?
It is she who calls me Yunus
and pierces my very breast,
stealing me away from my self,
for I am she and what is my poor self?
And now, Yunus, you too
must strip yourself bare on your path.
Should a hundred armed men come,
they cannot rob a naked man.
God is One and out of nothing,
thank God, He created the world.
In truth, we do not exist:
dominions and wealth, what are they?
God has summoned us to witness
His world that He created,
but no world is ever without end
and Solomon's kingdoms, what are they?
Ask Yunus, disciple of Taptuk,
what he has learned of this world:
it cannot last forever
and what are you, what am I?
Yunus, if you seek saints,
heaven and earth are full of them,
and beneath every stone you'll find,
another Moses, a thousand scions of Abraham
Lord, grant me such a love
that I no longer know where I stand
Let me wander away from my self
even against my own will.
Dazzle me, Lord, in such a manner
that yesterday becomes confused with today,
let me no longer be but this desire
that no image can ever assuage.
Take me, sever me from my self,
fill me at last with Your own self,
let my death be my union with Your Life
and let me not die elsewhere.
As soon as this fire bursts aflame
of what worth are laughter or insults,
let suffering at last consume me
and I'll never complain of my fate
From the afterword,
"Rational man, we now believe, can never penetrate the reasoning of God's mind or the mysteries of the universe unless he first abandons all attempts at merely human reasoning and thus allows himself to be possessed by the divine unreason of God or of modern astro-physics, both of which transcend his puny reason. However unreasonable it may appear to be, this unreason yet proves to be a reason of a higher order.
Nor do such beliefs imply that all reason, all madness, is by its very nature of divine origin or of a superior nature. Man may indeed become afflicted with more bestial forms of madness such as that of Nebuchadnezzar in the Old Testament, who was reduced to crawling on all fours and feeding himself like a beast as punishment for his sins. But the prophet, the saint, the mystic or the ecstatic poet, in facts the vates or rhapsodic bard of antiquity, can transcend in their divinely inspired frenzy the microcosm of merely human reason or madness, so that a "holy man" such as Peter the Athonite among Greek Orthodox monks on the Holy Mountain of Athos, may choose deliberately, out of sheer humility, to live like the animals whom Saint Francis of Assisi likewise called his "brothers," and to go around on all fours like Nebuchadnezzar and eat grass like a beast, not out of bestial madness but as an inspired act of divine unreason."
a child got her book published. so i was told to get a book published. when i was younger, i really wanted to get a book published. it was one of my life goals. but now i think it doesn't matter, and so it does not. and so i will not follow the life goals i had as a child.
life goals? what are your life goals now?
i don't believe in life goals now. every moment a precipice, a valley. i'm lost in the world, i'm lost without the world. i want to get a job, be good to those who have been so good to me, be good to those who haven't been good. i want to be a saint with a job really lol. but we all know i'm not a saint, i'm a sinner. i want to be a sinner with a job?
and we all know i'm not as mild as the previous paragraph makes me seem. anger sadness happiness pulses through me. where is my calm. where is my calm.
comparing myself to my peers makes me feel better. and if someone scores higher on my baseless imaginary barometer, i change the rules so that i feel better. where will this lead me. where i have been lead.
i have been told that i am doing well. i think i am doing well. but what does that even mean. what do i base this on. the book of Tobit emphasizes giving alms. i have not given alms as i have been equipped to give.
you should give then.
but will that make me feel better
you dumb shit, it's not about you feeling better. it's about being good.
language! i want to feel good though.
maybe that's irrelevant
i feel good
feeling good and being good are not the same thing. they may not be mutually exclusive. they are not the same thing.
they might be mutually exclusive.
yeah i said that. i said may. i didn't lead you one way or another.
i had nothing to do when my sweethums had her interview. the city was busy and there were a lot of bicycles, cars and people walking around.
the Church of the Redeemer was located nearby and i went in because the building looked old and i am interested in churches outside of the one i have attended on a weekly basis since i was nine.
as soon as i entered, there was calm and peace from outside. the Church had completed construction in 1879. at that time, the population of the world was 1.4 billion, Canada was three year olds, and my great grandfather hadn't come together, he was still in two parts, an egg in a woman who no one remembers and a yet to be produced sperm in a man we've forgotten. they are blanks to me, they've contributed to my genetic makeup, the same alleles that were around then interact with computer operating systems, freezers and lawn mowers.
there was a lady at the piano talking to one of the church staff. them and me. i didn't interact with them. and i liked that, i was able to sit and just read from the bible. and they gave me space. there was no interaction but i still felt welcome.
their bibles had the Apocrypha. "The Biblical apocrypha (from the Greek ἀπόκρυφος, apókruphos, meaning "hidden") denotes the collection of ancient books found, in some editions of the Bible, in a separate section between the Old and New Testaments or as an appendix after the New Testament." my bible does not have the Apocrypha. this means my denomination does not consider the Apocrypha to be part of God's Word.
i read the book of Tobit. there's a fish who is very important to the book of Tobit. early on, a fish tries to eat Tobit's son's foot. he is told to capture the fish and remove its heart, liver and gall bladder. these are used later to cure blindness, and drive a demon away.
i liked chapter four.
“Now that I have asked for death, why should I not call my son Tobiah and let him know about this money before I die?”
1 So he called his son Tobiah; and when he came, he said to him: “My son, when I die, give me a decent burial. Honor your mother, and do not abandon her as long as she lives. Do whatever pleases her, and do not grieve her spirit in any way.
Remember, my son, that she went through many trials for your sake while you were in her womb. And when she dies, bury her in the same grave with me.
“Through all your days, my son, keep the Lord in mind, and suppress every desire to sin or to break his commandments. Perform good works all the days of your life, and do not tread the paths of wrongdoing.
2 For if you are steadfast in your service, your good works will bring success, not only to you, but also to all those who live uprightly.
“Give alms from your possessions. Do not turn your face away from any of the poor, and God’s face will not be turned away from you.
Son, give alms in proportion to what you own. If you have great wealth, give alms out of your abundance; if you have but little, distribute even some of that. But do not hesitate to give alms;
you will be storing up a goodly treasure for yourself against the day of adversity.
Almsgiving frees one from death, and keeps one from going into the dark abode.
Alms are a worthy offering in the sight of the Most High for all who give them.
“Be on your guard, son, against every form of immorality, and above all, marry a woman of the lineage of your forefathers. Do not marry a stranger who is not of your father’s tribe, because we are sons of the prophets. My boy, keep in mind Noah, Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, our fathers from of old: all of them took wives from among their own kinsmen and were blessed in their children. Remember that their posterity shall inherit the land.
Therefore, my son, love your kinsmen. Do not be so proudhearted toward your kinsmen, the sons and daughters of your people, as to refuse to take a wife for yourself from among them. For in such arrogance there is ruin and great disorder. Likewise, in worthlessness there is decay and dire poverty, for worthlessness is the mother of famine.
“Do not keep with you overnight the wages of any man who works for you, but pay him immediately. If you thus behave as God’s servant, you will receive your reward. Keep a close watch on yourself, my son, in everything you do, and discipline yourself in all your conduct.
Do to no one what you yourself dislike. Do not drink wine till you become drunk, nor let drunkenness accompany you on your way.
“Give to the hungry some of your bread, and to the naked some of your clothing. Whatever you have left over, give away as alms; and do not begrudge the alms you give.
3 Be lavish with your bread and wine at the burial of the virtuous, but do not share them with sinners.
“Seek counsel from every wise man, and do not think lightly of any advice that can be useful.
4 At all times bless the Lord God, and ask him to make all your paths straight and to grant success to all your endeavors and plans. For no pagan nation possesses good counsel, but the Lord himself gives all good things. If the Lord chooses, he raises a man up; but if he should decide otherwise, he casts him down to the deepest recesses of the nether world. So now, my son, keep in mind my commandments, and never let them be erased from your heart."
You handed out flyers and samples for promotions. You assisted the mascot around the courts. You addressed questions and concerns about the cup. You supervised children with tennis games. You want to know if Adam and Eve talked to the animals as friends. You promoted the March Break trip.
The March Break trip?
I would have never promoted the March Break trip.
But here we are.
:D :D :D :D :D :D
You won game two too.
-April 28, 2016
There's a song called All He Says I Am that was sung in church today.
1. There's a part of the song where "I am righteousness" is sung. The way they sung it at church today, that line was repeated like five times. I was singing along, but when those lines showed up on the screen, I couldn't.
And then you look around the room and everyone is singing about their righteousness. And of course the crowd gets hype when they sing it.And can you blame them for singing the words on the screen, who wouldn't want to be righteous?
WELL YEAH, YOU CAN. BECAUSE THOSE ARE REALLY SELF-RIGHTEOUS LYRICS. AND I THINK PEOPLE SHOULD BE SELF-AWARE. I AM YET TO READ A SINGLE PASSAGE IN THE OLD OR NEW TESTAMENT THAT CALLS FOR SUCH SELF-RIGHTEOUSNESS.
But let's not end this blog post on a note that's negative.
2. From a Charles Price (of the People's Church) letter to my sister,
"Faith without works is dead, not because faith is inadequate, but because faith in God inevitably leads to God working in us and expressing himself through us. When John says in 1 John 4:8, "Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love", he is saying that because God is love, if we live in dependence on Him, his character will be our character, and loving will be inevitable."
Isn't that nice?
3. If I truly believe I can find comfort in Christ, then what exactly am I chasing?
Thank you God for all that I have.
Now that you're basically done your undergrad, are there any important tings that you would like to reflect on? Apart from the past year and a half of school that have been something else because of someone else.
Yeah, I'm really glad I had that bad semester at the beginning of year two. I lost money but it forced me to switch programs. I lost around 2-3 grand just from dropping courses over the course of my degree. Switching was a really good decision. I know that my friends who had the opportunity to switch out regret not doing so now.
My work experiences, even if I worked mainly from home, were a lot more educational than my coursework.
I won a couple of competitions, this was great and helped develop my confidence and self-esteem.
Apart from a handful of people I met in class, I never took the time to invest in relationships with my peers, in clubs or in extracurricular activities. I don't regret it one bit.
I went to a large university and all the course I took for the first three years had very large class sizes. This made me feel like I should have gone to a smaller university. In my final year, more courses had a smaller class size, and I really didn't feel the benefit of it.
For days when I had class, I would commute for 2-2.5 hours from home. Sometimes it was painful. But then I gradually learned how to fall asleep on the bus. Eventually you get used to it and it's not so bad. Commuting from home meant I was able to keep in touch with a few local highschool friends. I still speak to them regularly.
When I felt disoriented or alone at university, which only happened occasionally, I would go to the library. There's one big library at my university and it has a lot of books, it's great. It gave me the same comfort and warmth that my city's library gave me when I was a kid. I currently owe them $24.50. If you go over $25, you can't take out books. So it's been at $24.50 for a while haha.
Before university, I never really knew white people. Through my work, I got to know a couple who I liked and that kind of broadened my horizons.
Many of the professors were nice. Some were very bad. It's like highschool man! The worst course I took was an Ecology course in second year. The labs were really dumb. We would get into groups and guesstimate how many leaves would be on trees and write ten page lab reports with really shitty data. I liked my group. I got a 57 on my first mid-term, dropped the course, and didn't stay in touch with group members. No regrets though.
Of all four years, fourth year was definitely the best.
For my birthday this year, I got money, nice clothes, the perfect wallet, a sweet handmade birthday cake from a supersweets, another birthday cake from a somewhatsweets, a small book of very important memories that I've been looking at daily, paisam, and another year (hopefully a whole year).
MUHCUTEUMS and I went to see a Hindi movie the other day. And there was about 15 minutes of drama in it that really sucked me in. In these 15 minutes, this is what happened: the mother found out her son was gay, the son who was gay found out his mother's suspicions that his father was cheating on her were correct, the other son found out his mother acted as vehicle for plagiarism of his novel by the son who was gay, and the father got hit by a truck and died and there was a funeral pyre.
Not going to lie, those minutes were fire.
Excerpts from an Email
"I love my children. I love thinking of them as you have portrayed them below. As life-long friends and confidants and protectors of each other. That is what they are now, best friends, playmates, bursting with energy and joy that overflows and fills me up with happiness. (I hope you realize this is how your mum sees you). But you and I are on the other side and we know that might not be the path ahead. You said yourself that you think your sib.'s have moved up and on? My sisters and I are close-ish. Letting go is so hard. We have to be gentle with ourselves."
"I will pay no credence to pastors who speak of eunuchs! Who cares. Jesus might be talking about the horrors of female castration if he were alive today, but I doubt the subject of eunuchs would be on his agenda. I'm not sure what your church is like, but I am skeptical of many pastors. Jesus' way doesn't seem to be the way of mini vans and stained glass. Though who am I to judge? I am now in a time share condo, having a post afternoon swim with the kids in sub-zero degree whether. Climate change much?"
And then, months later:
"It slipped into my mind in the same way that a group of butterflies I knew flocked to the fire in hopes of becoming young again, they believed they would cocoon and become caterpillars again. They campaigned for followers. They called it collective cocooning. They believed the alliteration would help them attract followers. They thought wrong. In the end there was only one butterfly, one flame, no reverse chrysalis and a tiny pool of ash."
"From your last email, it's clear that if I speak on eunuchs as a pastor, you will not pay any credence to my messages. So I will refrain from speaking on eunuchs as a pastor, and if I do speak about eunuchs, I will speak to you about eunuchs as a friend. "
'Who can I tell all this to? Who'd want to listen? As the poet Boris Slutsky put it:
'When we returned from the war,
I saw we were needed no more.'
I have the whole Table of Elements in my body. I'm still wrecked by malaria. Not long ago I had a few teeth pulled, one after the other, and in my pain and shock I began to talk. The dentist, a woman, looked at me almost in disgust. "A mouth full of blood, and he wants to talk..." At that moment I realised I would never be able to talk honestly about anything again. Everyone thinks of us like that: mouths full of blood, and we want to talk.'
Excerpt from Svetlana Alexievich's Zinky Boys
What does the future hold?
We don't know!
Well, we do, we do know a little.
We know He is Risen.
This much we know.
What does my next year hold?
I don't know. Hope it involves me being held.
By you my heartumssss, my sweetums.
Marvin Gaye- Let's get it on.
If you have trouble with number two.
Then it's time for number one: FibreOne.
Faith and Urquhart shared some very bad experiences many years ago when they were both with bad elements. And so Faith, by associating Urquhart with those elements, had kept her distance.
On the top floor of an old house, a few weeks ago, Faith asked to see him again.
My sister, her husband and I obliged. The microwave sounded. He had new clothes, and was soft to the touch.
Faith and Urquhart got along splendidly. And we all took part. And Faith played Frogger on the big screen. I watched, adoring her.
Faith breathed fire. My sister held her hand and laughed with her. My sister's husband and I laughed too.
And Faith said 'Urquhart, you're not so bad when you're not mixed up with bad elements'. And she held my sister's face in her hands and told her 'this means you are a good element', and Urquhart held my face in my hands and told me not to try the banana-flavoured popcorn. We were all smiles.
Evil often thought of as cultish ceremonies, pagan gods, moon rituals, the occult. Evil thought of as symbols that appear in a music video or a dollar bill. But evil is selfishness, greed, sickness, hungry children sniffing glue because it takes away the sensation of hunger, vanity, plastic surgery lips and asses, swelling bank accounts. See? Evil is everyday ordinary.
Competing with others is not necessarily a prerequisite to success.
"My grandfather told me 'when you have to think about you have to do, don't think about what you would do. Think about what a 65 year old man, trying to retain some sense of dignity in his life, would do. Because we have already wronged, we have suffocated enough pigeons, we have guillotined enough cabbage heads, we have set fires to the bridges that connect us to what we should do. It can be difficult to do the right thing, but what's right has nothing to do with what's easy.'
I have been attending meditation classes offered by the university twice a week this month. My counsellor recommended it. At the beginning of every class, we are told to become a sweet orange, to open myself, to release small bursts of citrus, to feel our selves opening up as my skin is slowly peeled.
The instructor does her best to create a calm atmosphere. But she's a sad and angry person and so her best adds up to nothing. During yesterday's class, I was told to become a sweet orange, to open myself, to release those small bursts of citrus, to feel myself opening up. These exercises don't work for me, they never did. I only go because I am told to.
During yesterday's class, when trying to complete my transfiguration into a sweet orange, my mind drifted to an earlier place. I was in elementary school and it was my friend's birthday and he had brought me a slice of cake. He pecked me on the cheek. And my mind drifted far and far away and I fell asleep.
And my head fell flat on the floor in front of my yoga mat and I woke up. And my teacher got angry, and my peers were also upset because the whole exercise had been disturbed by my large head. My big head. They started to curse me, for turning them from oranges into people, for reversing their transfigurations. This made me cry. And this made them only angrier, and they began to spit on me.
And I thought of you, Avô. I thought of the words you said. 'Think about what a 65 year old man, trying to retain some sense of dignity in his life, would do.' And I pictured what you would have done, Avô, if you were in the room, if you were forced to witness people from all over the world, congregate in this meditation class, spitting and cursing on your 20 year old granddaughter.
And so I sang, very loudly, a soothing song. Just like you used to sing me to put me to bed. And their nerves calmed, and their anger dissipated. And so I repeated my teacher's instructions, I told them to become sweet oranges. And I waited, I waited, and they became sweet oranges. And just like you would have, I avenged myself.
The juice was sweet, sticky. It was more sour than Tropicana but I guess that's because while Tropicana isn't made from concentrate, it's far from freshly squeezed."
-from Stories from Yonderyear by Ana Kumar
My life is as smooth as my bum.
Might've jinxed it tho.
Sometime in the summer last year I recorded a song for you on WhatsApp. I remember recording it again and again and being unhappy with the result each time. To the point that I didn't want to send it. It was frustrating.
But I sent it anyway because maybe it would mean something and make you smile.
And today, several months later, the original song came on Spotify and you noticed it right away.
And you beamed. And you tried to contain it but you couldn't.
(And that makes me kind of proud about that recording.)
Sammamma, thank you for your kind words about my writing. They mean a lot.
This year is passing by fast. I think it's cuz heartums. It's been so good.
I watched the New Hampshire debate between Clinton and Sanders. I'm not an American, I cannot vote. I watch it for entertainment. I like the storylines.
Also I am really impressed with how both of them are able to speak with such energy and focus. Clinton is 68 years old. Sanders is 74. And they both have energy. I couldn't stand like that and talk about anything, not even about the social determinants of health.
From Cockroach by Rawi Hage.
"I did not know how cold it was. I'm never sure of the temperature, and I never look at the weather forecast. I'm not sure why people in this place always start their conversations with remarks about the weather. Small talk frightens me. I have nothing to say. I do not see the point of communicating just for the sake of saying something. Yes, it is cold. I'll admit it if you want me to, but at least today I was well-fed. Tonight the cook made me a plate before he left. Without calling me over or telling me anything, he shoved a plate in front of me, and then the owner came over and pointed at it and look at me. I sat at the small table next to the kitchen and ate, really trying not to show how much I was enjoying the food. I know what kind of merchant the owner is. Everything is negotiated. If my boss sensed my dependence on his meals, he might cut money from my pay or ask for more work and give me more orders and who knows where it would all stop— maybe with cleaning his car, or heating his car, or shovelling his snow, driving his in-laws, cutting the lawn under his suburban plastic chairs, scrubbing his barbecue. Some of these immigrants are still eager to re-enact those lost days of houses with pillars, servants, and thick cigars. Filth! They are the worst — the Third World elite are the filth of the planet and I do not feel any affinity with their jingling-jewellery wives, their arrogance, their large TV screens. Filth! They consider themselves royalty when all they are is the residue of colonial power. They walk like they are aristocrats, owners from the land of spice and honey, yet they are nothing but the descendants of porters, colonial servants, gardeners, and sell-out soldiers for invading empires."
Sweets is emotional because sweets can't believe!!!!!! He's grateful.
For a second I thought that minutes passed as quickly as days and panicked.
hi. im your sweets. bye.
So he brought down the people unto the water: and the LORD said unto Gideon, Every one that lappeth of the water with his tongue, as a dog lappeth, him shalt thou set by himself; likewise every one that boweth down upon his knees to drink.
"I was touched by the image of "God" like I was when I was a child. I'm not sure if that means I am 'keeping the faith' as you say, but it was comforting to know that I can still be moved at the thought of something beyond the material world. "
The first three daymares took place in the night, under the auspices of a smog sky, a charismatic shadow.
His arms were wrapped around a tree branch, his head around the Moroccan desert, his mind around his grandfather's dreams of play. Her arms were wrapped around a tree branch next to his, her head around the bright blue houses of Jodhpur, her mind around her grandmother bathing down by the river.
And after this, his arms were wrapped around a tree branch, his head around the bright blue houses of Jodhpur, his mind around his grandfather's dreams of play. Her arms were wrapped around a tree branch next to his, her head around the Moroccan desert, her mind around her grandmother bathing down by the river.
You know our food comes from somewhere right. Today's clementines came from Morocco, according to the box. To get a visual of what these clementine farms look like, I searched for Morocco clementine on Google Images.
I got a photo of a goat on a tree.
I thought this was really interesting. So I went on Youtube and searched for Morocco goats. And this is what I found.
16 goats in one tree. And who knows what it is like, to be one of those goats, in that tree, with your family. This video was taken in 2007.
A Google search for goat lifespan gives you 15-18 years. So it's probable that some of the younger goats are still around today. I wonder what they are up to.
-December 12, 2015
So in the American Christian evangelical churches (and that includes Canadian churches to a great extent) saying Merry Christmas instead of Happy Holidays is a really big priority around this time of year. It's a really big deal. Now, I'm not saying these Christians believe there is a war on Christmas, but they do feel like it's wrong to say Happy Holidays and the spread of the phrase 'Happy Holidays' is a threat to the church. (And some of them think that people saying Happy Holidays instead of Merry Christmas translates into some kind of warfare. These people don't really know what war is.)
I don't share that view, but that's fine! I'm cool with the conviction that some Christians have that it is wrong to say Happy Holidays instead of Merry Christmas.
However, I would really love to see similar passion and anger about the mass commercialization of the Saviour's birth, which leads to people maxing out their credit cards so that they have gifts under the tree for their kids, which leads to incredible stress for many families, which leads to the birth of the Saviour being reduced to the biggest shopping event of the season.
I'm not hating on people celebrating the Christmas season. I'm hating on threats to the Christian faith that are much bigger than the phrase 'Happy Holidays' that go ignored. Pastors in mainstream evangelical churches are more likely to make jokes about how our shopping is going than they are to call out the commercialization of Christmas for diluting, watering down, and dumbing down the Christian faith.
Mark 11:15-19 (ESV)
15 And they came to Jerusalem. And he entered the temple and began to drive out those who sold and those who bought in the temple, and he overturned the tables of the money-changers and the seats of those who sold pigeons. 16 And he would not allow anyone to carry anything through the temple. 17 And he was teaching them and saying to them, “Is it not written, ‘My house shall be called a house of prayer for all the nations’? But you have made it a den of robbers.”
Matthew 21:12-17 (ESV)
12 And Jesus entered the temple[a] and drove out all who sold and bought in the temple, and he overturned the tables of the money-changers and the seats of those who sold pigeons. 13 He said to them, “It is written, ‘My house shall be called a house of prayer,’ but you make it a den of robbers.”
Luke 19:45 (ESV)
45 And he entered the temple and began to drive out those who sold, 46 saying to them, “It is written, ‘My house shall be a house of prayer,’ but you have made it a den of robbers.”
John 2:13-16 (ESV)
13 The Passover of the Jews was at hand, and Jesus went up to Jerusalem. 14 In the temple he found those who were selling oxen and sheep and pigeons, and the money-changers sitting there. 15 And making a whip of cords, he drove them all out of the temple, with the sheep and oxen. And he poured out the coins of the money-changers and overturned their tables. 16 And he told those who sold the pigeons, “Take these things away; do not make my Father's house a house of trade.”
Christ walks into the temple, sees that it has been turned into a marketplace, and literally starts to flip tables. So I think it's okay for me to say what I'm saying.
-December 6, 2015
Sounds like a tough long semester. Death is a reminder.
Feel free to reach out if you ever want to talk about things (number here) to someone with very limited life experience.
I know it feels like the high flying storyteller days are behind us, but we still have important stories to tell. I recently wrote a paper about intended adolescent pregnancy that got published. It was filled with medical jargon, and I did not understand the literature on the matter but cited and lifted words here and there. Many of the articles I cited I didn't even read. These are my new stories. Stories of intended pregnancy, drug use before pregnancies, and home care access and use among the frail elderly.
Birth is insane. You have two children of your own. You gave birth to two. To two! With your highschool darling. This is beautiful! This is a story! Your children are who know each other, will be in their 30's together, helping each other through their middle-aged problems in the 2030s and 2040s (hopefully), when the Obama era is as far away from them as Soviet dominance is from us. And so it goes.
Birth is insane and is all that exists. Really, this is the reality. Life is about birth. Life is about giving birth. When people stop giving birth, people start to die. This is life. This is biology. These are the basics.
What is sexuality without birth? Immoral?
Jesus mentioned eunuchs. Show me a pastor today who mentions eunuchs. Distance grows, icebergs melt, Obama strolls and delivers a strongly-worded cloud of nothing.
Amma says a lot. Soon it will just be the two of us living at home. The older siblings have moved out (and on?), and Acha (father, papa, pa) is max chillaxing in Kerala. Kerala, India, where communism still has a stronghold, where the revolutionary measures imposed by the Communist Parties and land reform resulted in the high human development index the state still enjoys (0.79, where the world for the first time (unsure) had a democratically elected Communist Party.
And so Gaddafi led Libya to have the highest life expectancy in all of Africa prior to the NATO-led invasion (WHO statistics). Now Libya is destabilized, there is no central government, and the healthcare system established under his reign ceases to exist. On that note, does Libya exist?
I bring this up in my tutorial when girls from a farming town attack Assad and they tell me I am supporting fascism and a dictator by bringing up Libya, and then I snap.
(And what they can do? Do they have a voice? There's only one way it can go. Yes, you know, Josh knows, your kids know too. Yes, advertisements for Rice Krispies teach us from a young age.)
They crackle and pop.
And so I exist. And they? Who knows.
My friend, whose family left Iraq following that invasion was talking to me about how shitty things are in Iraq now. Recently it rained and Baghdad flooded. But these floods never happened before under Saddam. Apparently, the minister in charge of water management/supply took the funds allocated for water projects and fled the country. Heavy rain today means the government declaring an emergency.
You are young Marylynn. You are young Josh. You are the future!
Stay strong in the faith!
Maintain positive relations with yourself!
You know there is much love when I feel free to write an email like this.
OH MY SWEETUMS.
Krispy Kreme has never tasted so good.
You laughed so much at the ostrich photo thing I bought at Thrift Store. I thought you'd think it was weird but you loved it. And it was nice to hear because I loved that photo thing too.
Today I snapped at a girl in class.
But some people need to be told! And sometimes we need to represent those who are not at the table!
Did I come across as a social justice warrior?
Maybe I am a social justice warrior.
Helping others doesn't present a conflict. If the improvements in the wellbeing of others is in your interest, then helping others is in your self-interest.
Not that I'm there, but maybe one day I'll think I am there.
But what does it matter what I think?
I am blessed beyond measure.
What does He think?
It's easy to be self-righteous. But righteousness is something else altogether.
Down by the River by Letta Mbulu
A long conversation at lunchtime today about faith. With the family. What steps can we take from what we know? What stops us from taking those steps? Where are our priorities? Faith as dependence on God.
When you board the small plane, get a window seat
I am a giant on earth, you will see me see you even from afar
Press your left hand against the tiny window
I am a giant on earth, placing my index finger on your tiny window
It's weird to go into a McDonald's and be greeted and the door, and to order from a giant iPad, and to have the food delivered to your table, and to have two employees waiting on you, and to ask if a burger can be cut into two only to be told nope and then only to have your McDonald's waitress (is that even a thing?) be told by some random man who was acting like he was on his phone the whole time that the burger should be cut into two, to have her apologize for the delay, to be judged by two men from McDonald's head office for the number of sauces you ordered on your burger.
It's the best to have a sweets, a yumyums, a sweetums, a sweetie 3.14, a nerd who is so sweet, yummy, sweetumy and also yummy, who takes care of you, who is fond of you, who is every bit as excited, nervous and anxious about the future as you are.
Player One: The way you have acted is disgraceful! It is utterly disgraceful! Get away from me, wolf. I fear for my safety.
Wolf: As if you are grace manifest! Grace Manifest! Haha.
Player One: How dare you charge at me!
Wolf: Apologies, Grace Manifest! Apologies.
Player One: I hate you.
Wolf: Grace Manifest!!
-October 4, 2015
-September 12, 2015
Just finished Modern Romance by Aziz Ansari + Eric Klinenberg, enjoyed it :)
-August 28, 2015
What a family!
What a home!
What friends, and company!
What did I do?
In a line in a line in a line
You look just like how I'ma be
In a line, in a line, in a line, in a line, in a line
Three angels in kind, on time, go straight, don't sine
-August 20, 2015
-August 14, 2015
-July 26, 2015
RUN THE JEWELS
If you can't respect rap after reading the lyrics to this song then maaaaan, you're missing out.
Seen her some years later out in Decatur told her I’m sorry for causin' her pain
Causin' me pain?
Causin' me pain?
She asked again and then grabbed my right hand
Asked am I crazy, said look here, baby, I release you from all of your sins and your shame
Cause I’ve been redeemed
I found in Christ
Whatever it take I hope you find it, Mike
The look on her face shown that glory replaced all the shame and the hate and that she wears a crown
My late grandma Bettie had prayed with her heavy and told her to tell me lay my burdens down
― Run the Jewels (Ft. Diane Coffee) – Crown
-July 20, 2015
From Empire Ants, Plastic Beach:
Little memories marching on
Your little feet working the machine
Say will it spin, will it soar
My little dream working the machine
-July 14, 2015
Do dates matter?
History is written by the ruling class. If you want to know the truth about hunger and pain of the past, don't go to the history books, go to the hungry and the hurting. They are still with us, around us, around me and you.
As poor are the poor are, the rich are also poor. Do you understand?
As great as books are, how much more important it can be to find comfort with someone, to lose yourself in company that you enjoy (mesnaqt)? Sometimes hour long conversations about the day to day. Seemingly non-essential at times, but aren't these relationships the most important, that have this codependency letmehearyoutalk, the most important? More on this and hospitality later.
A friend of mine has often talked to me about how attention is the new currency. But now I think, hasn't that always been the case? Much of my discomfort stems not from my circumstances, but from attending to the wrong priorities, prioritizing what should not be prioritized. This is a privilege, it's not true for everyone, but it's true for me. And so, I dwell, in hours like these, thinking about what's right, about what needs to change.
I'm a big fan of dwelling.
And so, I dwell and dwell.
-July 6, 2015
This Is A Post On What John Piper Calls the New Calamity
In a 5-4 decision, SCOTUS ruled that states cannot ban same-sex marriage. There’s a lot of commentary going on about it. There’s been outrage and support from churches on the matter.
I was asked today what I thought about the decision. The reality is I thought very little about it before being asked. I know, to either camp this makes me seem like a cray fool.
Vineeth! This is a victory for anyone who supports the LGBT community!
Vineeth! This is the institutionalization of sin!
A Little Background
DesiringGod.org is a website founded by Pastor Piper. Pastor Piper is huge for the Evangelical Christianity. He has a global following. He is recognized as an important leader. The website he made is good. Many call it a great resource for Christian teaching. I looked through the website today. I can see it’s a great resource.
The first three posts on today’s DesiringGod.org are about the verdict. I didn’t read the third post yet because I had trouble going through the first two and was wary of reading further.
Post 1 (http://www.desiringgod.org/articles/so-called-same-sex-marriage)
The main paragraph in the post is:
“What’s new is not even the celebration and approval of homosexual sin. Homosexual behavior has been exploited, and reveled in, and celebrated in art, for millennia. What’s new is normalization and institutionalization. This is the new calamity.”
Piper is saying that the normalization and institutionalization of sin is new for America and new for history.
I found this so stupid. These kinds of grandiose statements make me upset. And for some reason, in the mainstream evangelical churches, you most often see this language come out when talking about gay marriage. You don’t see superstar pastors address wealth inequality as unjust with quite the same fervor.
What conception of history, especially American history, does Piper have? Remember, this is the America that has found a way to normalize aggressive trade sanctions against many countries that have led to deaths from starvation and have caused irreparable damage for millions of civilians across the globe. You consider this the institutionalization of sin? Pastor Piper, the laws and rules in many American States that promote wealth inequality, bills that are passed in State Houses that attack already weak welfare states, all these things are the normalization and institutionalization of sin.
We are sinners. We are wretched.
Post 2 (http://www.desiringgod.org/articles/why-homosexuality-is-not-like-other-sins)
Closes with the following paragraph,
“You’re wrong and you’re loved — that’s the unique voice of the Christian. That’s what we say, speaking from our own experience, as Tim Keller so well puts it, “we’re far worse than we ever imagined, and far more loved than we could ever dream.”
That’s our message in this debate, when society’s elites despise us, when pop songs vilify us, when no one else has the resources to say anything outside of two extremes, we have this incomparable opportunity to let the gospel shine, to reach out in grace: you’re wrong and you’re loved. We get to say this.
That’s why homosexuality is not like other sins.”
All this drama blabla bullshit in the second last paragraph. I hate it when members of the Church in areas where the Church is so protected, where they have enjoyed security for so many years (actually hundreds), where people drive SUVs and can probably attend hockey camps and shit act SO ATTACKED. Society’s elites despise us! Pop songs vilify us! This self-victimizing bullshit. Being vilified by pop songs is some kind of persecution isn’t it? I guess that’s the kind of persecution Paul talked about? Is that the race Paul ran, the one where people sang vilifying pop songs to him? UGHHH
There’s this conception of sin in some Churches that some sins mentioned in the Word are worse than others. Some people believe same sex marriage is inherently worse than greed and gluttony. Some pastors are obsessed with homosexuality. I don’t know why. I guess because homosexuality remains unconventional to some groups and is yet to be normalized in the same way that divorce has been accepted by most church groups. Christians have become accepting of divorce despite Christ’s own admonishment on the practice. (For comparison, you won’t find any red letters in the Word about having homosexual relationships.)
This is not to say divorce = gay marriage. It’s to say that many Churches who commonly demonize relativism, practice a very relative morality. We have seen this with divorce. We may see this with gay marriage among many churches in the US in the coming years (we have already seen this happen with many churches; some now have openly gay pastors. And I’ve listened to a message by an openly gay pastor and it was really convicting. Their message had nothing to do with what them being gay, but I’m just saying maybe straight white men are not the only source of guidance that we have in the modern church. Okay, that was too sassy, my bad.)
The post reads like the pastor’s trying hard to preach a middle path, but it comes off sounding condemnatory… because it is condemning. There’s an element of self-righteousness inherent with going to someone and saying “hey you’re wrong and Jesus loves you.” And the guy who wrote the post makes it sound so loving “you’re wrong and Jesus loves you.” What he should be saying is “I think what you’re doing is wrong but really I’m not too sure because we used to be really anti-divorce but now it’s accepted and even pastors get divorced, like the Baptist televangelist Charles Stanley, and the Word was originally used by many white churches in the Southern US states to support slavery because of Ephesians 6:5, so if I’m being honest I don’t really know lol, so just ignore that other stuff. But one thing that hasn’t changed in the message over all these years is that Jesus loves you.”
And chances are, the gay married person will say something like “what?”
Or maybe they’ll hear the sincerity in your voice and it’ll encourage them to continue the conversation. Maybe they’ll say “it seems like you’re going through some conflicting ideas about your own faith. What does your God accept as pure and faultless, maybe starting there will help you out.”
And then he can say “oh, there are actually red letters about that one! Hold on.”
“James 1:27, Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world.”
And maybe they’ll say “do you think I’m polluted?”
And then he says “Yeah?? I think??”
And they’ll say “that’s pretty condemning. Do you look after orphans and windows in their distress?”
And if he doesn’t, he’ll say “umm, noo.”
And then they should say something like “who are you to condemn me you fool..”
Or if he does, he says “I do!”
And then they should say something like “and are you polluted by the world?”
And if he has a trace of honesty in his soul, he will say “yes, I am.”
And then they should say something like “Well then I condemn you too man.”
-June 26, 2015
So happy that I'm going to pass out.
Head isn't spinning, no no.
Head is floating, floating.
-June 24, 2015
Mr McGee - Zero 7
Down the well is nothing but wet.
-June 20, 2015
Apparently ppl have actually thought about me becoming a pastor.
That's not happening tho, the pastor thing.
But really, who am I to plan? p>
-June 15, 2015
K: Look, there's a post about you from 2013 where I'm saying farewell.
V: What, where, show me.
Like yoo khadiggs.
-June 13, 2015
Good times Imran!
-June 12, 2015
Saroja! I am Lakshmi; didn't you recognize me?
-June 9, 2015
There's more to life than being happy.
You also have to be sad and miserable and worry about things not worth worrying about. This is a mandatory requirement.
Once in a lifetime, you might get away with it, once in a lifetime you might get away with it. Once in a lifetime, you might get away with it. Once in a lifetime, you might get away with it. Once in a lifetime.
I'm not made for all the things that people seem to be made for. I'm not made for love, for event planning, for making salads. I can admire these things, I think that's where I belong. I think I should work towards being an active listener and admirer for things of, and relating to: love, event planning, and making salads.
After my upset stomach episode, I have a completely different opinion on psychedelics. This is not to say that I won't be partaking in the future. It's to say that the world is already psychedelic. The sky has been so blue as of late. I don't know if it's normally this blue. Why isn't everyone just staring at the BLUE SAUGG SKY and marvelling. Why am I alone in this. I'm surely not alone in this right?? I share this city with a million, and this sky with billions.
I don't know what my values and goals are. I have some ideas. But I have to let them sit in my mind and let them sift. In a month's time, after some serious sifting has occurred, I'll report back (I hope). But there's always more sifting to do?
MT always asks me if I'm writing, if I have been writing. And I haven't. And why does it matter?
I wrote something (that I thought was really hilarious, but I don't know if you'll find it funny because it's not very funny..) the other day. I'm thinking of expanding on it to complete a screenplay.
There's a karnatic dance competition in Bangalore and Team Courage calls on DJ Delhi's expertise to get the edge on their competitors. His advice is absolutely insane! He tells them to dispose of years of karnatic dance and learn how to bhangra in this South meets North, Bangalore meets Golden Temple, dance move of the century. It's DJ DELHI in...THE BANGALORE BHANGRA.
This September, don't forget to be great, and don't forget to DANCE.
This September, don't forget to have fun, and don't forget to be GREAT. It's DJ DELHI in DJ DELHI IN THE BANGALORE BHANGRA.
Sometimes I think I'm not in a happy place. Then I think what are the happy places? Where am I to be? And I close my eyes and run through my life like it's a well thought-out dream sequence on stage.
What would my movie look like if it was modelled after Mishima (1985)? A story from my life, maybe my love story, interspersed with stories from my fiction. With a dope soundtrack by Philip Glass. And I close my eyes and I do these things and it doesn't always bring me comfort, but it does give me something fun to do. There's more to life than comfort and happiness.
-June 6, 2015
Best remix ever?
-June 6, 2015
Okay, those were the hardest flights of my life. Child Caesar, you didn't want to be me yesterday.
-June 3, 2015
Almost complained about flying because I'll have to wake up early and because I'm coming back on the same day and because I don't know what I'll be doing for the majority of the day.
And then I remembered I'm going to be FLYING
IN THE SKY
ABOVE IT ALL
Above some things***
WHAT SAY YOU, CHILD CAESAR?
DON'T YOU WANNA BE ME
-June 1, 2015
I was loving you, I was loving
I was loving you, I was loving
Trying so hard, so hard, so so hard
Trying, trying so hard, so hard, so hard, so so hard
Comet come to me, come to me
Comet come to me, come to me, come
Comet come to me, come to me
Comet come to me, come to me, come
Thought I'd make you happy
Thought I'd make me happy too
So I never admitted
(I was loving you, I was loving)
Any of these feelings
Something in me has stopped pretending
Something in me has stopped pretending
Something in me has tried, tried, tried so hard
So hard, so hard, so hard, so hard, so
Trying, trying so hard, so hard, so hard, so hard, so
Comet come to me, come to me
Comet come to me, come to me, come
Comet come to me, come to me
Comet come to me, come to me, come
-May 31, 2015
Here are some of the songs we covered:
Lovestomed - Justin Timberlake
Circle of Life - Lien King
Temperature - Sean Paul
Gold Digger - Kanye Whest
A Place for My Head - Linkin Park
Americana Boy - Estelle
-May 30, 2015
People long to be represented as a block of text.
People, you can be represented as so many other things:
Footprint in the snow
Footprint in the sand
Medium paced claps
Decent karaoke performance
Chilling and eating a mango
-May 29, 2015
I am based on a true story.
I am based on actual events.
-May 28, 2015
Do it, do it! The disco highlights.
Do it, do it! The disco high life.
Do it, do it! The disco highlights.
Do it, do it! The disco high life.
-May 27, 2015
The orange crush said something has to blow up and Vineeth said no no no, that's not cool, don't say that, chill out man.
Orange crush, orange wave, a cup of Gatorade.
I am worthy.
-May 25, 2015
Do you want to hear happy people?
Do you want to hear what they sound like?
They sound like a chickadee's lament.
-May 23, 2015
Do you care about chicken rights?
-May 21, 2015
Yes, learning without application is fine, but why not reserve that for things you like: for dancing, music, art, those irrational aspects of the soul instead of learning without application for something that frustrates you, for drudgery.
Because living is not about feeling good. Why does Vineeth do anything related to the yard? Is it because it needs to be done? No, it's because submission teaches obedience.
-May 18, 2015
-May 17, 2015
The records won't show all of anything. They won't show all of: the day to day grind, your daydreams, your daily rituals, the hours you spend texting and doing other shit on your phone.
They won't show all of any of these things.
When you're 50, you'll come across a few photos of you playing a game on your phone and that'll be your survey sample size and you'll think that was one of the things that you did.
"But hey, atleast it's something."
Most of my records are not honest. But there's enough truthiness there for me to self-identify with someone in the stories, paragraphs, blablah's that I write, or atleast identify who/what I was trying to capture on the page.
I was looking through some old emails, honest records, and I couldn't believe it was me. But when I looked through my old writing, from around the same time, I recognized my voice and my message and myself.
Maybe it's that I reflect on life and things and thoughts when I write, and in doing so, I remember them better. Or maybe it's that it's easier for me to connect with myself as words on a page, rather than with myself as: a person in a photograph, a person in a video, a person socializing, a person.
If someone's being dramatic and it's harmless, be dramatic with them. Don't neglect them. Go on stage. Perform. Make jokes. Buy drinks.
Look at the sun. Comment on the sun. There's always something to say about the sun.
There's no sun in sight.
Then look at the moon. And if there's no moon, look at the sky. And if there's no sky, sit and read together. I have collected a few things that you guys can read together.
-May 16, 2015
"You take care of your cheeks okay. We'll find our new normal shortly. Crazy was our normal for a few weeks, but there's something new and boring on the horizon."
sa re ga ma va pa dha ta ni so fa ti do ro let flo
-May 15, 2015
the field - silent
We are the wheels on a bus that go round and round, round and round, round and round. We are the wheels on a bus that go round and round, round and round, round and round.
Lather! Rinse! Repeat!
Routine as ritual.
Young Birdman: Without me, all that's left is you.
-May 14, 2015
The Earth revolves around the Sun at a speed of about 18.5 miles/sec (30 km/sec).
Space is the place.
-May 13, 2015
He relaxed into his seat and sipped his scotch. He focused on the tiny screen, which was buzzing with magnetic snow. All the screens blinked and then came alive.
Tears filled his eyes. He had never felt so happy in his life.
The screens went a dark, dark blue.
STRANGER THAN KINDNESS.
Moleskine Scans (???), Letters (December 7, 2015?)