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Perhaps evangelism exists because relational worship doesn’t.

I’m not focusing on Christianity, here. Although I’ll pause a moment and reiterate my reservations around images of fish on cars, and the people that often drive them.

My point is: Show me a man of any real or true faith, and I’ll show you a potential ally for truth and light.

Evangelism can be both strident and impotent. Whereas worshipping in the form of good deeds and actions based on a common set of principles can, and in my experience, speak louder than words. It’s all part of living the Authentic Life.

Peace be to my Brothers and Sisters.

Brian Patrick Cork

It’s Sunday after all.

There isn’t any Soccer today.

Fortunately, God has given me a sense of humor.

Peace be to my Brothers and Sisters.

Brian Patrick Cork

I’m waxing sophomoric, here, and distilling some thoughts into the simplest of terms.

Practicing Christians will hold that forgiveness (which is apparently divine), and “turning the other cheek”, are vital elements to a sustained scociety and civility civilization.

Muslims extol the thinking that an “eye for an eye” can offer similar benefits, albeit with a greater emphasis on an ultimate and expedited solution.

A reason, but not necessarily, the reason, for my pondering much of this stems from my current investigations into existentialism and heterodoxy. In fact, you can read through my initial thinking here:  dangers of the authentic Life.

I understand, sort of, why it might make sense to turn a cheek when someone takes a swipe at you. But, on the other hand (perhaps literally) it also makes sense, to me, that if you cut off the hand that offends, the perpetrator can’t won’t likely repeat the mistake offense.

…pausing, here… I use the cross-out effect for affect – just so you know.

It takes character (ponder that play-on-words) to absorb a lot of Christian-oriented punishment. However, in the Muslim perview, the limited number of limbs (and life) increases the sense of urgency when it comes to playing fair.

Somebody has to pose these question and sort out the thinking. It’s what Prudent and Optimistic Gentlemen, do.

Peace be to my Brothers and sisters.

Brian Patrick Cork

“The two enemies of the people are criminals and government, so let us tie the second down with the chains of the constitution so the second will not become the legalized version of the first.” – Thomas Jefferson.

As our country was founded on Judeo/Christian beliefs, the originators of our great nation appeared to understood one greater truth as they created our Republic.

I’ll position that as being human flesh is fallible and cannot be trusted.

“Given enough power, man will be corrupted by that power – no matter the nobility of his intent.” As so aptly phrased by Lord Acton when referencing the heated debates around the infallibility of the Pope at the turn of the 19th century: “And remember, where you have a concentration of power in a few hands, all too frequently men with the mentality of gangsters get control. History has proven that. All power corrupts; absolute power corrupts absolutely.”

I’ll pause here, and advise you that in 1862, Acton merged The Rambler, a Roman Catholic – ish monthly, into the Home and Foreign Review. His contributions at once gave evidence of his remarkable wealth of historical knowledge (one reason why I’ve studied him myself). But though a sincere Roman Catholic (while I could never pretend to be), his whole spirit as a historian was hostile to ultramontane pretensions, and his independence of thought and liberalism of view speedily brought him into conflict with the Roman Catholic hierarchy. NOTE: Lord Acton is naught less than a fascinating read. Look him up on Wikipedia. Do it!

In any event… Our founding forefathers knew that we needed a system of checks and balances that could control the flow of power. Legislative (to create the laws), Judicial (to enforce the laws) and Executive (to set policy). No one branch controls and the output of one branch is executed by another.

So I’m saying all this to inform. Perhaps the result will revolutionize and lead to reform …not because I’m waxing poetic today; rather because I’m inclined to think the collective we of this nation require turbulent, possibly radical change today, almost as much as our forefathers did, yesterday. Remember (if you care to recall positions taken by men such as the inestimable Mr. Acton) that one must centralize power in order to accomplish government programs, redistribute the wealth and “perfect the human”.

Mind you, Acton likely felt that that man was reflected by his government, and that kind of perfection was possible. However, I’m more likely to think that our government needs to reflect that greatest potential that man might realize. So, that’s where I flex my Jeffersonian ideals. And, Thomas Jefferson could kick Acton’s ass. And, he would take on Obama without, even asking names.

Although not for the first time, because I am constantly on the lookout for such things everywhere I study, research and travel, I’ve recently encountered a (possibly) fair(er), albeit sophomoric, description explanation of what is happening, currently, in American politics. Whether you like or dislike Glen Beck (and, most people say they do, as they continue to increase his ratings), the five minute program below might open a few eyes and lead to awareness, if not outright, understanding.

Socialism means slavery. Marxism, a form of socialism is change by revolution. Progressivism, a form of socialism is change by evolution. After all… In theory, it’s possible to boil a frog if you turn the heat up slowly…

I’ll pause here, yet again, to catch my breath… But also mention that you better not use that anecdote unless you are prepared to explain it fully, and understand what it might lead to, if relayed to a group of thirteen year old middle-schoolers. I tried it, and it was controversial, to say the least. I attempt things like that within my own household, with varying results. Just follow your browser here, and you’ll be just fine.

Look at the change in our country politically over the last one hundred years. We’ve all been part of it. The slow decay of values and morals to create a collective people (as in: …we the people…) who like their ears tickled.  So… There might be an argument here for a concern that the progressives, those collective peoples, intend to enslave your children’s, children.

Perhaps America is waking up to the objectives of progressivism. Watch the aforementioned video, and possibly be informed. In twenty five years we’ll have a better understanding whether it’s the informed or misinformed variety. Just start trying to understand now, so you can at least give your progeny a fighting chance, like Jefferson and his hearty and ferocious crew did for us.

Peace be to my Brothers and Sisters.

Brian Patrick Cork

…it is, in fact, Emma Jo.

And readers of this Blog know it.

And, what a terrific kid she is.

She’s proved it, in spades again, today.

But, allow me to digress with some background information…

Haiti was recently hit with the biggest earthquake in that part of the world over the last 300 years. Big. Seismic scale of 7.1 is the order-of-magnitude it’s been assigned. As of the drafting of this post the death toll is anticipated to reach the tens of thousands.

I’ll be asking questions around Haiti representing a comparative Babylon, perhaps, in another post, some day. There may be some rvelance to the Book of Daniel, in there. Possibly Isaiah. Because there is a vision involved. That’s unsettling. Maybe it doesn’t need to be. After all, we’ll know one way or another, possibly not – and, then it won’t matter.

As esoteric as that thinking might be, later, Haiti is in our faces, now.

Haiti is something of an enigma. Apparently the country’s leading religions are Catholicism (not Christianity) and Voo Doo. And, depending on whom you ask, it’s uncertain which of those two views prevail. In fact, if you are interested enough, google: “voo doo” (but try Vodou as well), and the majority of first page hits (other than Wikipedia) relate directly to Haiti – oh, and Louisiana – and, that means New Orleans (where as it turns out, many Haitian slaves found themselves around, well, 300 years ago). Along the way, and if you care to investigate – and, I have – because, well, that’s what I do, you’ll find, maybe discover, that many Haitians are finding creative ways to combine Catholicism with voodou – and, they would call that Christianity.

Pastor Pat Robertson (who might be looney (“while teaching karate, avoid inhaling demon spirits”), and he might be right) thinks the people of Haiti cut a deal with Satan to rid themselves of the French in the 1800’s. You can learn a bit more about that, here (listen to Kristy moan when Robertson makes a point. Have you noticed Christians do things like that during forms of sermons?).

dude… This is fun for me.

In any event, Emma Jo and friends like Claire (whom you’ve also followed on this Blog from time-to-time) don’t know much about voo doo – or Catholicism, for that matter. Although Claire’s family are full-on Christians.

But, over the last few days they’ve heard a lot about Haiti.

I have many opinions around Haiti. And, it’s “pirate government”. I won’t, even though keenly tempted, go into much detail around that, because I want the focus to be on what I’ve observed in my daughter that has softened my heart… Even for Haiti.

Here we go. Hang on.

We have many strong British influences in our household. So, we get television and related feeds from Europe. This means, amongst other questionable benefits, the information is censored in ways that are different than you might be, otherwise, accustomed to seeing here in the United States. Think in terms of graphic. Once you’ve accomplished that, all manner of awareness creeps into your thinking.

I’ll step back into some background, just once more (you’ll not be fooled by that, certainly not), to inform you that Emma Jo has been saving her money to buy, yet another, American Girl Doll (she already has fifteen – and, that adds an ironic twist to this story, I feel). It’s Lanie she wants now. This is no mean feat for a seven year old. American Girl Dolls cost more than $100.00. And, it takes a lot of effort and concentration for a seven year old to be that “good”, and to accomplish that many chores.

NOTE: Just in case you are reading this and, possibly, breaking out with a cold sweat with the prospect, I am not going to level you with some argument that American Girl Dolls are voo doo dolls. But, as I tap these words into this post, the hair on the back of my next is rising, and I sense some form of inspiration tickling the back of my head. Book mark this post, but only if you dare.

So… We were watching some raw television footage from Haiti. And, to be candid, I was not prepared for the absolute devastation that has surrounded those people. The anguish is indescribable as you see entire families piled up on street corners with, essentially, little hope of burial, let alone identification, imminent.

I found myself thinking to myself: where is God in all of this? My mind did venture, briefly, to Daniel and Isaiah (my recent vision, again), and then of course, John Stein (for that to make any sense, you’ll need to revisit my recent post: there might be demons and there are ALWAYS questionsand focus your research in the comments, mind you. Warning: This effort will, decidedly, distract you from some of the uncertain merits of this current post).

Emma Jo and I had been discussing a trip to Learning Express (terrific store), and bowling (she likes to bowl). So, this was all about Daddy and Emma Jo and bonding, and love, and security, and happy things.

That’s when the horrific (I’ve cast about for a more dramatic word, but it eludes me) image of a young girl, seemingly Emma Jo’s age, draped across the body of a wood-like and dust covered figure of a man that was likely her earthly father. The child is wracked with greatly evident agony. She is wailing. And, there are no other people around her (other than a television crew, I’ll suppose). Utter, and complete desolation of spirit. Despair reigns, there.

Emma Jo has gone stiff. She’s mesmerized. Selfishly I am berating myself for allowing her to witness this horror show.

She gently leans back into me, and very quietly asks: “Daddy, can we save her?”

I’m at a loss of words. I want to think fast and come up with some analogy that might create a call-to-action that might soothe her. But, before I can draw a breath to start some ramble, she reminds me that she has money saved up for her new American Girl Doll. She’s a bit subdued, certainly. The heart-felt, and so little-girl-desire for the new doll is clearly under siege from a HUGE heart breaking with sadness for the, not quite comprehensible, agony of another child (and, a doomed one at that, I’ll wager).

“Daddy, can we send that little girl my Lanie money? Maybe she can buy a doll that will make her feel better”.

I’m reasonably certain, at least some people are going to roll their eyes over this. …how quaint, you might smirk.

But, in the eyes of this earthly father, my own princess realized another person in distress; and, her immediate reaction was to try and help – with the only resources she, not someone else, could bring to bare.

That’s it for this post.

I bring it to an abrupt end.

Emma Jo is behind me, working quietly on some project, happy and content to be around Daddy. I think she’s online navigating Club Penguin with Claire, and also, Emma E.

That little girl in Haiti has likely never heard of, let alone played, Club Penguin. And, every time I see an American Girl Doll I might think voodou. So, it’s about perspective today. Also my own heart being softened. Thanks to two children, mind you, that care little for religion. But, I have faith in my daughter.

Emma Jo’s name might not be “Charity”, however, it could be legion.

This abrupt end is also, likely, due to the simple fact this story is not yet completed. So, stay tuned. Do it!

Peace be to my Brothers and Sisters.

Brian Patrick Cork

It can, should, and, will be noted, in this very post, that Apple, Inc. and Christianity are remarkably similar in that they are systems because they require or thrive on evanglism, are acquired tastes, reflect the growing needs of a global population, and involve a charismatic and relevant deity (of one kind or another).

Peace be to my Brothers and Sisters.

Brian Patrick Cork

So…

Jimmy Carter ended up being our nations President at an odd time. Heading into the mid-1970’s I think we, as a country, were on our collective heels. There was a lot of reservation around the oil crunch, our Army was weak and potentially ineffective, and the AMC Gremlin was deemed an innovative car (I feel this is all, somehow, insidiously correlative).1974 Gremlin

In the face of that, Carter’s role will always be an example of a Chinese maybe. I suppose he’ll be remembered for his struggle finishing a 5k run (after months of training yet), being attacked by a rabbit (and this being photographed), pulling the United States out of the 1980 Olympics, and, setting an example as a global diplomat and establishing the bar for international relations – he probably would have made a better Secretary of State. Finally, he just served up Ronald Reagan, who ate his lunch, in a manner of speaking, and then watched the world change, seemingly, over night.

Just an unusual legacy.

jimmy carter riding a bikeHowever, it’s been fun to watch his impact as a leader actually grow positively since he left the Oval Office. There are many examples of this. However, I’ll focus on just one today. He’s made a courageous stand (and, stood up for females) against his own church and an archaic view of the world that remains all to prevalent (even here in Alpharetta and people you meet walking around North Point Community Church).

You even see it in sports, for Gods’ sake, where Dad’s (Mom’s, too, are guilty of this) will outright dismiss their daughters soccer matches in favor of a son’s football game (and, the little sissies need pads). The look of utter incomprehension, when this topic is broached, is astonishing to me. It just hit me this is fodder for yet another post. So, I’ll not, yet, allow myself this tangental digression.

Read this article: Jimmy Carter is “Losing his Religion”. Do it! And, I suspect the message will cross over much better than I could ever relay it.

A reminder, here, that I’m neither a Christian (just hip with God), or a feminist (I know where my bread is buttered). What I always am, and first, is a father of two (hearty and ferocious) daughters.

Peace be to my Brothers and Sisters.

Brian Patrick Cork

what’s all this about?

I can’t explain what that damn tree means - or, if it might stand for something.

However, here I do discuss events, people and things in our world - and, my (hardly simplistic, albeit inarticulate) views around them.

So, while I harangue the public in my not so gentle way, you will discover that I am fascinated by all things arcane, curious about those whom appear religious, love music, dabble in politics, loathe the media, value education, still think I am an athlete, and might offer a recipe.

All the while, striving mightily, and daily, to remain a prudent and optimistic gentleman.

brian cork by John Campbell

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"Perhaps victory can be realized best when the heart changes."

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about this particular Theme:

I'll warn you now that Tarski is theme of this blog created by Benedict Eastaugh and Chris Sternal-Johnson. It is named for the logician Alfred Tarski. I'll recommend his papers ‘The Concept of Truth in Formalized Languages’ and ‘On the Concept of Logical Consequence’, both of which can be found in the collection Logic, Semantics, Metamathematics.