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Category Archives: wisdom

Lightning “Rods”

appreciation attitude humility insights Joan Winifred wisdom

You Reader🙂— most likely– are familiar with the idiom/expression: “lightning rod”…one useful on-line description/definition:

A lightning rod (US, AUS) or lightning conductor (UK) is a metal rod mounted on a structure and intended to protect the structure from a lightning strike. … The main attribute common to all lightning rods is that they are all made of conductive materials, such as copper and aluminum.
(Negative) Examples of What Not to do… a necessary…for weighing consequence/survival, eh?

(1)  don’t wanna be a Nim”rod”

or (2)
a he”rod”…who??

The family name of a dynasty that ruled over the Jews by appointment from Rome. Herod the Great was famous for rebuilding the temple in Jerusalem and for ordering the slaughter of children in an attempt to destroy Jesus. (Mt 2:16; Lu 1:5) Herod Archelaus and Herod Antipas, sons of Herod the Great, were appointed over sections of their father’s domain. (Mt 2:22) Antipas was a tetrarch, popularly referred to as “king,” who ruled during Christ’s three-and-a-half-year ministry and through the period up to Acts chapter 12. (Mr 6:14-17; Lu 3:1, 19, 20; 13:31, 32; 23:6-15; Ac 4:27; 13:1) After that, Herod Agrippa I, grandson of Herod the Great, was executed by God’s angel after ruling for a short time. (Ac 12:1-6, 18-23) His son, Herod Agrippa II, became ruler and reigned up to the time of the Jewish revolt against Rome.​—Ac 23:35; 25:13, 22-27; 26:1, 2, 19-32. [New World Translation of the Holy Scriptures, Revised Version 2013, Glossary: Herod.]

{hmmm, (joan) better be nimble 

and humble, huh?!}

points considered/discussed at mind gym last evening:

Herod…Acts 12: “On a set day, Herod clothed himself with royal raiment and sat down on the judgment seat and began giving them a public address.22 Then the people who were assembled began shouting: “A god’s voice, and not a man’s!” 23 Instantly the angel of Jehovah struck him, because he did not give the glory to God, and he was eaten up with worms and died.”

Herod readily accepted glory that should be given only to God. How that differed from the immediate and emphatic rejection of undue praise and honor by Paul and Barnabas! We should not desire glory for whatever accomplishments we may have in Yahweh’s  service. [excerpted reading:  w 5/15/08 highlights: “Acts”]

Acts 14:  “However, when the apostles Barʹna·bas and Paul heard of it, they ripped their garments and leaped out into the crowd and cried out:15 “Men, why are you doing these things? We too are humans having the same infirmities as you have. And we are declaring the good news to you, for you to turn from these vain things to the living God, who made the heaven and the earth and the sea and all the things in them.”

The Bible strongly suggests “humility”
and not self-exaltation as the most appropriate/wisest way to go in life.

Humility leads to “happier” consequences.

Readings about “Wisdom” personified from which to learn:)

Wisdom has much to recommend itself. “Happy is the man that has found wisdom,” for it is better than silver, gold and precious stones. It brings with it length of days, riches, glory and pleasantness. One of the reasons why all this is true of wisdom is found in the attitude it takes toward pride. Thus the personification of wisdom says: “Self-exaltation and pride . . . I have hated.” Why does wisdom hate pride and self-exaltation?—Prov. 3:13; 8:13.

Wisdom is concerned with the fitness of things, with having them right. It knows the value of order and harmony. Wisdom is able to be objective, to view the facts impartially and to reason upon them clearly. It is interested in efficiency and results. Wisdom therefore hates pride because pride flies in the face, as it were, of all this.

What is pride? The word comes from roots meaning “stately,” “handsome,” “valiant.” Among its definitions is “inordinate self-esteem.” A certain amount of self-esteem is necessary, even as the apostle Paul shows: “I tell everyone there among you not to think more of himself than it is necessary to think; but to think so as to have a sound mind.” Pride shows unsoundness of mind. It is an exalting of self, a taking of oneself too seriously, a thinking too highly of oneself. Pride is an emotional state that is not subject to reason and is therefore folly.—Rom. 12:3.

One who is proud is not only fully conscious of his own good points but he imagines he has many that he does not possess. Still worse, one who is proud is as blind to his own weaknesses and shortcomings as he is to the good and strong points of others. The proud person of one nation sees only shortcomings in those of other nations. Pride frequently goes with educational advantages, achievement, fame, power or wealth. Among the most common forms of pride are pride of race, religion and nationality.

Noting the tendency on the part of imperfect humans to brag, (Yahweh) Jehovah God long ago counseled: “Let not the wise man brag about himself because of his wisdom, and let not the mighty man brag about himself because of his mightiness. Let not the rich man brag about himself because of his riches.” Why not? “For who makes you to differ from another? Indeed, what do you have that you did not receive? If, now, you did indeed receive it, why do you boast as if you did not receive it?”—Jer. 9:23; 1 Cor. 4:7.

Wisdom hates pride not only because pride is without logic and sense of fitness of things but, chief of all, because pride is the flouting of the authority of the greatest, wisest, most powerful and most highly exalted Personage in the universe. Pride causes one to oppose the divine will of (Yahweh) Jehovah God. That One “opposes the haughty ones,” and warns that “everyone that exalts himself will be humbled.” Pride makes us the enemies of the One that can do the most for us: give us everlasting life in happiness. No wonder wisdom hates pride!—1 Pet. 5:5; Luke 14:11. [excerpted w 1960, Wisdom Hates Pride]

 

BTW: OUCH.

am Learning & painFULLY 🙁 aware of my (obvious and not-so-obvious) personal physical, mental, emotional limitations/imperfections/weaknesses.

12/14/18 @ 8:41 p.m.

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Pedal to the Metal

attitude education government insights Joan Winifred reality True v. False Religion trust Truth wisdom

Conversion. Interesting musical (and other) Topic. Check it out:

In the fourth century there occurred one of the outstanding “conversions” of all history, that of Roman Emperor Constantine. It is said that before a battle he saw the sign of the cross in the sky with the words: “By this conquer.”

Did Constantine become a real Christian? Christian conversion is symbolized by baptism, total immersion in water. Constantine postponed this vital step until his deathbed. Constantine was not “a Christian character,” contends historian H. Fisher in his History of Europe, and adds: “He . . . put to death his wife and his son. . . . He believed in Christ, but also in the unconquered sun. [Constantine initiated the observance of Sunday] He . . . retained the office of Pontifex Maximus [high priest].”

Due to Constantine’s support, “Christianity” (of a degenerate kind) became the official religion of the empire. This resulted in a sudden increase in conversions and set the pattern for multitudes of future conversions. Historian E. Gibbon explains: “As the lower ranks of society are governed by imitation, the conversion of those who possessed any eminence of birth, of power, or of riches, were soon followed by dependent multitudes.”

Tribes. “Pagan” Tribes:

In the fifth century the decadent Roman Empire began to shrink and crumble. Warlike Germanic tribes burst through the frontiers of the empire and flooded southward. The famous Pax Romana collapsed and Europe became a theater of war. In time, Clovis I, a Frankish king, subdued his rivals and became master of a large part of western Europe. The Franks were not Christians, but Clovis I married a Catholic princess named Clotilda.

According to some accounts, Clovis I had an experience similar to that of Constantine. Hard pressed in a battle with the Alamanni tribe, he appealed to Christ for victory. He won. On returning from his campaign he was baptized in 496. Charles Oman’s book The Dark Ages states: “3000 of his warriors followed him to the font [of baptism].”

Did they become real Christians? Answers Oman: “It cannot be said that the king’s conversion made any favourable change in his character or his conduct. . . . The Franks . . . hastened to follow him to the fold of the Church . . . But, as with king so with people, the change was almost entirely superficial.

Genuine conversion is not an act of superficiality, eh? Real conversion is not cosmetic.

Britain:

Britain in the sixth century was mainly non-Christian. Under the empire it had been “Christianized” somewhat, but Saxons had invaded and driven the British “Christians” west. The latter had no ties with the papacy in Rome. So in 596 Pope Gregory I sent a monk called Augustine who landed near Ramsgate, Kent. He soon converted the local king, Ethelbert, followed by the men of Kent. Similar mass conversions took place in other parts of England. Fisher writes: “Here, as elsewhere, the conversion of the pagan is to be attributed not to any penitential movement of the heart, but to the pressure of the monarchy upon a submissive population. . . . The creed of the king became the creed of the people.”

But Augustine’s main assignment from the pope was to convert the independent British “Christians” to Rome. Two meetings held by Augustine with the local bishops failed completely. “If,” the “saint” exclaimed, “you will not have peace from your friends you shall have war from your foes.” This belligerent attitude echoed the policy of Pope Gregory I who, according to the Encyclopædia Britannica, “sometimes advocated a war of aggression against heathens in order to christianize them.”

Saxony, Other Countries:

War certainly played a major role in the conversion of non-Christian Europe. Concerning Charlemagne, king of the Franks from 768 to 813, H. G. Wells says: “He made his wars of aggression definitely religious wars. . . . Whole nations were converted to Christianity by the sword.” In 782 at Verden he massacred in cold blood 4,500 prisoners who had led a revolt and turned back from “Christianity.” Concerning the conquest of Saxony the Encyclopædia Britannica states: “The violent methods by which this missionary task was carried out had been unknown to the earlier Middle Ages.”

Cowed, no doubt, by Charlemagne’s cruel reputation, the Slavs of eastern Europe were easily subdued and converted. In 988 Vladimir, the Russian ruler, maneuvered his marriage to a Byzantine princess, an Eastern Orthodox Catholic, and agreed, as part of the political contract, to become a “Christian.” He then “commanded the collective baptism of his subjects.”

“The conversion of Europe to Christianity,” wrote historian Fisher, “was, after the first heroic age of poverty and enthusiasm, mainly the result of material calculation or political pressure. The Goths, the Franks, the Saxons, the Scandinavians went over to Christianity, not as individuals directed by an inner light, but as peoples subject to mass suggestion and under the direction of political chiefs.

Many of the clergy had become wealthy, politically powerful and immoral. This caused the growth of “heretical” sects. By the twelfth century, Languedoc, or Southern France, had become a hotbed of heresy. Let us now consider how the Church attempted–

“Heretics in Southern France”…

There were two groups of heretics in Languedoc​—the Cathars, or Albigenses, and the Waldensians. The former were the most numerous and their beliefs had elements of Christianity and Oriental ideas. The Waldensians were more orthodox and very zealous in preaching the Bible among the common people.

Peaceful methods of conversion were tried first. When this failed, Pope Alexander III declared at a Lateran Council: “The Church . . . must . . . invoke the aid of princes, that fear of temporal punishment may force men to seek a spiritual cure for their shortcomings.”

However, Pope Innocent III tried another preaching campaign. Prominent in this was a Spanish priest, Domingo de Guzman. But in spite of his zeal conversions of heretics were few. A Dominican writer credits him with saying: “Where a blessing fails, a good thick stick will succeed.” What was this “good thick stick”?

In July 1209, a powerful army of knights, men-at-arms and mercenaries set off from Lyons to Languedoc. They were soldiers of the Cross. They had mustered at the bidding of Pope Innocent III to conduct a Crusade against the heretics. Their leader was a papal legate. On July 21 this force camped near the city of Béziers in southeastern France. A suggestion that a group of heretics should be given up to the Crusaders was rejected by the citizens.

The next day the Crusaders attacked and soon overwhelmed the small body of defenders. The mercenaries, vicious desperados, and the knights, all eager for plunder, were ruthless. Many people fled to the churches for safety. Historian Oldenbourg, in the book The Massacre at Montségur, describes the outcome: “The doors of the churches were forced open . . . All inside were slaughtered wholesale​—women, invalids, babies, and priests. . . . In a few short hours the wealthy city of Béziers was a city of bleeding mutilated corpses, and nothing else.” And this shocking display of brutality was done by men led by the papal legate, who triumphantly wrote to the pope: “Nearly twenty thousand of the citizens were put to the sword, regardless of age and sex.

Did this “thick stick” get results? Hundreds of Cathars and Waldensians were burned at the stake, but by 1229, after twenty years of war and misery, the heretical groups were still well supported in Languedoc.

In 1233 two Dominicans were given special powers as Inquisitors. Their method was to announce a “period of grace” during which heretics or sympathizers could come and confess. But to prove their “conversion” they had to denounce others. This crafty scheme, backed by the fear of torture or the stake, caused many to collaborate. Denunciations snowballed and set off a reign of terror. In just one place, Moissac, 210 heretics were burned alive in a monstrous holocaust. The Holy Inquisition succeeded in suppressing the Cathars. The Waldensians still survive.

A few centuries later the fair country of France was convulsed with the struggle between the Church and the Reformation. In England, when King Henry VIII proclaimed himself head of the Church of England in 1534, those Catholics who refused to be converted to his new politico-religious system were in great danger. “The creed of the king” still had to be “the creed of the people.”

Protestantism:

Protestantism made progress during the reign of his son, Edward VI, but the pendulum swung the other way during the following reign of Catholic Queen Mary. Sir Winston Churchill commented, in his “History of the English Speaking Peoples”: “Here were the . . . living beings who composed the nation, ordered in the name of King Edward VI to march along one path to salvation, and under Queen Mary to march back again in the opposite direction; and all who would not move on the first order or turn about on the second must prove their convictions, if necessary, at the gibbet or the stake.

Anyone familiar with the Sage of PEACE and Love –Jesus– and His “love Your neighbor as Yourself” and forgiveness teachings would ask:

Can you imagine Jesus Christ or any true Christian condemning people to the gibbet or the stake for their beliefs?”

[excerpts read and my highlights/italics: Were Christendom’s Methods of Conversion Christian? Awake!—1982]

PLEASE!:) WAKE UP PEOPLE…human “progress” ?!  so-called “evolution” through the centuries down to modern-day…HA!..humans, sadly/stupidly, still employ/fall for the same sort of cruel (conversion) strategies/tactics in “varying” degrees…in government, in business, in religion, in media, in social-media, in academia…”creed of King” whomever (he/she) “king” happens to be and whatever “creed” happens to be…the dominators cry:  Submit or else! Comply or Fry!:(
NO! I THINK FOR MYSELF.
Any conversion/change of my heart/thinking is voluntary.
And based on “Accurate” education–an essential, eh?
As wisely noted in the Bible: “humans have dominated humans to their injury”…these centuries-old patterns/precedents continue—different kings, different platforms, different places—SAME STUPIDITY…aka fake lies, fake ideas, fake living…ALL (eventually) deadly.
i will continue to remain politically neutral and resist the popular controversy/ideology–flavor of the day…attempting to coerce me/my thoughts/actions into submission.
TRUST TRUTH:)
(The Bible always tells me the truth!)
“Thinking ability itself will keep guard over youdiscernment itself will safeguard you.”—PROVERBS 2:11.
12:23 p.m. 12/13/18 (FL)
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Stiff

appreciation Breathing-Fragile-Life healing Joan Winifred logic science & spirituality wisdom

Stiff solutions don’t ultimately work. When we take the stiff approach to anything…we can be easily controlled say by the problem(s).

  1. One method to tackle real world problems is to look to real world (i.e. nature/creature) for solutions.

This is “a” brief example:

The world’s “currents” …impact us all. So what i’ve learned from Sea Horse’s tail …”being able to twist and untwist with minimal energy”…f~l~e~x~i~b~i~l~i~t~y protects me from being broken by tight spaces aka complex circumstances, etc. and makes me strong enough to tackle the task(s) at tail/hand. 🙂

i LOVE Biomimetics.

12/08/19 @ 10:01 a.m.

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