Archive for ‘Personal’

March 2nd, 2014

Would You Want to Know When and How You’ll Die?

by Max Andrews

It’s not a very easy question to answer and if you feel the need to sit in silence and have a drink at the pub or have a cigarette over the question feel free. Would you rather know when and how you will die or would you rather let providence unfold and let your ignorance diminish as time goes on?

We have very little control over when we will die unless we take our own lives or we put ourselves in circumstances that will likely increase death (e.g. dangerous activities like sky diving, drugs, scuba, skiing, etc.). Be honest with yourself and place morbidity aside. I’m going to make a personal pros and cons list that come to mind…

The thought occurred to me when I was thinking about my genes. Yeah, I know it’s a weird thing to think about…

Tags:
February 12th, 2014

Loving the Unlovable — Drug Users

by Max Andrews

I’m currently going through the second darkest period of my life. I have no friends–only close acquaintances–and my family and friends are on another continent. There are some people who know the details behind the motivation for this post–great. For those who don’t, even better.

I completely understand why people are addicted to drugs. After recent encounters many people don’t know how to talk to people who struggle with it and I’ve met some who do know. I know because I have chronic pain and I’ve had some pretty hefty stuff after my surgery (hydromorphone, ten times the potency of morphine). It takes the pain away and it feels good. Gee, why wouldn’t anyone want more of that? Not only is there a physical pleasure but it’s an escape from reality.

The escape from reality is a huge concern and has to be handled properly. A few weeks ago I did an event where I fed some food to the homeless and spoke to a heroin addict and heard his stories. I recently developed a friendship with a homeless man in the city who used to be alcoholic.

January 15th, 2014

The Affirmations and Denials Directory

by Max Andrews

I’ve decided to make a referent post that outlines my position on many things philosophical, theological, scientific, biblical, and other. I have many similar directories: Molinism, Multiverse, Philosophy of Science, Epistemology, and the Origins Directory.

Ontological Basics

  1. Ontological Status. Existent
  2. Necessary. No
  3. Contingent. Yes
  4. Person. Yes
  5. Organic. Yes
  6. Faculty of Will. Incompatibilist (although all we need is that flicker of freedom).
  7. Personhood. Cartesian Substance Dualist, leaning Hasker’s emergentism.

Bible & Theology

  1. Theology. Theist
  2. Religion. Christian
  3. Trinity: Social Trinitarian
  4. Denomination. Associate Reformed Presbyterian (Don’t ask me how that happened…)
  5. Catholic. No. Some Catholic Dogma is contrary to what I understand the gospel to be. Some Catholics love Jesus and are saved as well, though in spite of the Catholic teaching.
  6. Eastern-Orthodoxy. No. See above.
  7. Middle Knolwedge. Yes
  8. Molinist. Yes.
  9. Soteriology. A Molinist Model
    read more »

January 14th, 2014

How Feeding a Homeless Man and Talking to him about Life and Jesus Wrecked Me

by Max Andrews

“Hi, my name is Max. I’ve seen you here before. What’s your name?”

“Hi, Max. My name is Sandy.”

And that’s how it started. I’ve walked past Sandy many, many days around campus. Every day he is reading a book. Today was a book about a German U-Boat that collided with a commercial liner. I’ve seen him read the Bible several times and as I passed by I noticed that he’s read both the NT and the OT.

I asked him what he knew about Jesus and he said, well, the gospel message. He said his favorite book is Revelation but doesn’t understand it. I laughed. I told him I had a degree in biblical studies and I have no idea what it says. He laughed too.

He’s read the Gospels a few times, Acts twice, and he really loves Romans. And I thought, “What an open door!” So, we talked about Paul. Before getting there we talked about him for a little while. We had an exchange of existential thoughts–being thrust into existence without our say so and we are left to our own devices, or so it seems. He resonated with that.

“We are forced to construct our own purpose, meaning, and value.” I told him.

“Well, we can for a little while.” He responded.

“Exactly.”

December 8th, 2013

Love, Philosophy, and Love

by Max Andrews

264207_10150227244710163_6694857_nWhen you say “I love you” to your fiancé[e], spouse, boyfriend, or girlfriend the profundity behind that declaration is incredible.  So, if my beautiful wife asks, “Why do you love me?” what do I say?  Well, I give her my reasons of course… but at what point do I originate my reasons?  Yes, God has orchestrated the world that it be this way but what factors are involved in God’s providential molding?

I believe the question of love ultimately comes down to the individual’s agency, their free desire and choice to love.  If all my reasons to love are external then that would seem to imply that there could be external reasons for me to stop loving.  Here’s a few examples. I love my wife because:

  • She has a beautiful smile.
  • She is fun.
  • She is intelligent
  • She has gorgeous eyes.
  • Her personality complements mine.
  • She is kind and gentle.
  • We have memorable moments.
  • She makes me happy
  • Etc.

This is by no means an exhaustive list but I chose features and examples that a lot of people will say up front.  All of these are external features and reasons.  What if these change and

August 23rd, 2013

Unsolicited Advice to Serious University Students

by Max Andrews

I figured it was about time for me to distribute some unsolicited advice. I haven’t always been successful in my academic career so I may not be an authority here. However, that’s not to say that I haven’t done well either. I wanted to share my scholastic habits with those university students who want to take their education seriously. I cannot offer guarantees but it’s my hope that you do what works for you and practice the habits that will produce a successful academic career.

  1. Education is a joy. The greatest trick the schools have ever pulled on us is to make us think education is purely pragmatic. Education is merely to accomplish an end for financial gain or the requirements to get into a good sports team, etc. Those who have bought into this idea have fallen prey to anti-intellectualism.
    read more »

August 17th, 2013

Who is the Best/Worst Survivor of LOST’s Oceanic Flight 815?

by Max Andrews

For assistance in identifying each character please see the Survivor’s List. Minor characters and unnamed characters have been excluded.

July 22nd, 2013

Personal Updates

by Max Andrews

As you may have noticed, the blog’s activity has been very minimal lately and I’ve been doing Q&A’s every other week for the last couple weeks. That’s not due to a lack of submissions but rather a lack of time. We are leaving Lynchburg on Wednesday and we will be traveling to see family for a few weeks prior to our departure for Scotland. Thus, with the move, work, and all the consequent logistics I’ve been quite busy. While we are traveling I’m hoping to have more down time since the bulk of the issues have been dealt with in the move. This is just a friendly update to explain why things have been so slow around here lately. Hopefully, the blog will be up and busy soon enough! Thanks for your patience and your loyalty.

May 13th, 2013

Teaming up With Reasonable Faith

by Max Andrews

The last few weeks of mine have been incredible. My wife graduated with her BS in Communications specializing in PR and Advertising and graduated with my Master’s in Philosophical Studies. These few weeks have allowed our humanity to express every range of the human emotion, which is a good thing.

Screen Shot 2013-05-13 at 1.37.39 AM

As we prepare to move to Scotland for my PhD in Philosophy at the University of Edinburgh, we are seeing family and traveling places before we go. One of my main goals was to attain an adjunct position with a university so I can be a professor and work online. Well, I am no longer teaching intro. to philosophy courses at a University, which is sad. However, God had different plans for me–at least for the time being. I’m very humbled to announce that I have been offered and have taken a position with William Lane Craig’s ministry, Reasonable Faith.

May 8th, 2013

Meaning In Tragedy–Tim Lambesis’ Arrest

by Max Andrews

UPDATE: http://www.nbcsandiego.com/on-air/as-seen-on/LambesisCharges_San-Diego.html

UPDATE 2: http://www.utsandiego.com/news/2013/May/09/lambesis-murder-for-hire-san-diego-arraignment/?#article-copy

UPDATE 3: http://lambgoat.com/news/20388/Tim-Lambesis-victim-of-setup-says-lawyer

UPDATE 4: http://lambgoat.com/news/20444/Tim-Lambesis-bail-lowered;-steroids-blamed

UPDATE 5: http://www.upi.com/Entertainment_News/Music/2013/05/19/Lawyer-Tim-Lambesis-took-steroids-before-alleged-murder-for-hire-plan/UPI-39071368980516/

As-I-Lay-Dying-Tim-Lambesis-Hitman-Murder-604x604It’s in the middle of the night and I can’t sleep. I’m absolutely heartbroken over the news of Tim Lambesis’ (lead singer for As I Lay Dying) arrest for allegedly attempting to hire someone to murder his wife. AILD is my favorite band. I feel especially close and drawn to this band for many reasons. Outside of their amazing, heavy sound, their lyrics are unique and insightful.

It’s been several hours since I first read the news and I feel physically sick over this. Allow me to be completely honest and open for a moment. This isn’t something I’d normally share but my heart yearns to share [a part of] this. For about two years now I have had an existential battle. A few months ago, on a Sunday, I woke up and went to church with my wife and a couple friends. I was desolate all morning. I