April 17th, 2012
There are three primary categories for virtue the Christian/theist will affirm. The first are the transcendental virtues: truth, beauty, and goodness. The second set is the theological virtues: faith, hope, and love/charity. Then there are the four cardinal virtues: prudence, courage, patience, and justice. It’s my belief that every Christian must practice epistemic humility. What is that? Well, epistemic humility, in the sense I’ll be using it, refers to an application of the four cardinal virtues in the area of epistemology (knowledge). Each of these virtues have a respective vice. For instance, the virtue of moderation would appear as a vice in addiction.
The virtue of epistemic prudence is know when and how to appropriate your knowledge to others. Have you ever noticed that person in class or in church that seems to be the ‘know-it-all,’ whether they actually are or not? Of course, it’s worse when they’re simply ignorant of what they’re talking about, but not only is this person annoying but there may be several issues rooted in the flaunting of knowledge. There’s nothing wrong with sharing you’re knowledge but, like I said, it’s how and when you share it.
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April 3rd, 2012
Sometimes I think about how crazy it is that I believe in God. I mean really! Why do I believe in someone who claims to be an All-Powerful, Knowing, Loving, Creator of all, and Great in spite of all the unanswered questions in life and bad things that happen? Why do I continue to cling so tightly to a particular way of life and faith that is most of the time so hard. HAVING FAITH IN GOD IS HARD. I have thought to myself, “Man, it would probably be so much easier NOT to believe in God, not to hold on to these values that seem so difficult and impossible sometimes. Plus, some people ‘without’ God seem to be doing alright”.
But that is a lie. And I honestly would never trade my faith in Jesus Christ for anything. I don’t want to live one day without trust, hope and faith in Him.
My faith is my own. It is very personal to me. I believe some things others may not. I believe things in the Bible not everyone does. And I believe God is alive supernaturally in my heart, in my soul, and in life and creation itself.
God is not dead. He is not non-existent. He has miraculously and supernaturally made himself very real to ME in ways that I could never doubt His existence.
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February 3rd, 2012
I was speaking with a good friend of mine earlier today and she told me about why her recent ex-boyfriend broke up with her (let’s call her Jane and him Richard). Jane is in her last year as an undergraduate in theatre. Richard couldn’t come to terms with an appreciation for theatre and the arts. According to him these things are only useful if used for explicit ministerial purposes. This led to Richard breaking up with Jane. This is such a sad state of affairs. What makes this a curious situation is that I’m fairly confident this ideology is rampant in men. I often hear that if a man is in theatre, the ballet, or the arts he must be gay or feminine. I’m going to argue on the contrary. It seems that being masculine or manly has become equivocated with being macho or a rough and tough man who likes football and hockey. There’s nothing wrong with football and hockey, surely real men can like these too, but there’s more to being a masculine man than just that. Men who have an appreciation for theatre, ballet, opera, gymnastics, poetry, and the arts are men who encompass so much more about life.
Let’s primarily consider just a few of these examples. Ballet is such a beautiful feat. This is one of the most beautiful expressions of the beauty and ability of the human body. Imagine an adagio, slow graceful movements to slow music, while the woman is performing several movements and entrechats and she comes to rest in battement tendu (sliding her straightened out leg beside her). While she comes to her last position imagine the man gracefully approaching her for their final coda. He forms his body to hers for a perfect coupling. The grace, discipline, strength, and the form of dance is a spectacular demonstration of the body. It’s a presentation of how the beauty of the body can be expressed–the intimacy of the coupling of body to body.
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October 23rd, 2011
If God does not exist then man lives in Bertrand Russell’s world of scaffolding despair. Man is merely the product of pointless cause and effects with no prevision of the ends being achieved. All the labors of the age, devotion, all the inspiration, all the noonday brightness of human genius, are destined to extinction in the vase death of the solar system. Man’s achievements are destined to be buried in the debris of the universe. Only within the scaffolding of these [teleological] truths, only on the firm foundation of unyielding despair, can the soul’s habitation henceforth be safely built.
If there is no God to provide meaning, value, and purpose, the only consistent option for humanity is suicide. Any becoming of life-affirming or life-denying acts are illusory. Absolutely nothing can be a positive or negative act for the individual since there is nothing to determine a differentiation. One is forced to face Nietzsche’s abyss and face the reality that no rope can scale the depth of nothingness. One is only left with despair, guilt, and angst. If one can determine that despair, guilt, and angst are not preferred then his only option is to eliminate such emotions and thoughts (if the implication, by any means, can be determined to be better). If there is no God, the only remedy for absurdism is to participate in Nietzsche’s abyss of nothingness: suicide.
(As a note, I want to emphasize that I am not advocating suicide. I completely disagree with the starting premise that there is no God. I believe the logic is sound but since there is a God, there is objective purpose, value, and meaning to life. If you are struggling with the thought of suicide please tell someone.)
 Bertrand Russell, Mysticism and Logic (New York: Barnes & Noble, 1917), 47-48.
 Here is where Sartre, Camus, and others disagree. Because of absurdity, man’s only option is to choose suicide. Death is the only means by which it can be overcome. In a Christian context, God recognizes that death is the only way to overcome man’s absurdity. The means by which God provides teleology is by means of death. God becomes incarnate and overcomes absurdity by means of his own death, which may be imputed to humanity. Here we find a paradox. In order for there to be a genuine sense of teleology and becoming there must be death. There must be death to bring about life, a life of becoming, relationships, and of teleological existence.