Some Riddles of Existence, and Their Burdens We Bear

Riddles of existence; what are they?  Well, a riddle would be a problem, simple or complex, that gets you thinking; thinking as to ascertain the answer to the said riddle.  As for the unsolved riddles, there is a burden we bear in not knowing their answers. A burden of unknowing; a burden that may well keep us up at night, just thinking about that riddle.  How might we and trees be similar; outside the obvious truth of possessing life? What are we compared to others, and what are others compared to ourselves? The riddles of existence might just be one surefire way to lose yourself in thought.

What are we missing out on?  Trees can’t see or hear because unlike us, they do not have the specific organs to sense such natural phenomena.  Humans on the other hand, well, we’re decked out with everything we seemingly need to live our life to the fullest. Eyes to see the world, ears to hear, sense of feeling to feel things, a way to taste things, and even the old olfactory to smell the world, but trees are missing pretty much all of that.  The full extent of a tree’s life is limited to everything it can sense, or respond to as a living thing. Here’s the question; with that same logic, what are we missing out on? There could be a whole world around us that we are completely oblivious of because we don’t have the organ to detect it. Think of the spectrum of light, and of how small of a slice of that spectrum our own eyes are able to detect.  A small fraction of all light in the universe is visible to our complex, yet simple eyes. Just to sit and lose one’s self in the wonder of what we could be missing out on is really quite something.

Who’s me, and who’s “me”?  Am I special? Is “me” special? We are “me”. Makes sense right? Like I said, we’re all “me”, we’re all “I”.  Not all of us are “he”, nor are we all “she”, but we are all “me”. Anyone other than ourselves can simply refer to us, our own being; as “you”, or “him/her/he/she” etc., but that same person refers to themselves as “me”, and “I”.  So that would be who “me” is; we are all “me” but only I am me. This is to simply say that we are all ourselves; our own beings, independent and free-thinking, seeing ourselves as “I” and “me”. So this is the difference between “me”, and me.  The “me” would refer to everyone capable of self-awareness, free-thinking, and independence. The “me” in quotes is my way of separating the individual from everyone. The individual would be without quotes; in reference to myself. My version of me.  “Me” means something different to everyone. To any conscience outside of my own, I am a “he”, a “them”; somebody else.  To the same person that sees me as a “him” and a “he”, they too would think that they are “me”, which is true, they are the only them and that applies to all people and makes them special, but the other thought here is the conclusion that, in a general sense, everyone is “me”.  Everyone is special for this very reason. No two people claiming to identify as a “me” are the same. Every “me” is different, but they’re all “me”. The burden here would be somewhat existential; in knowing that you might see yourself as so special, when really you’re just like everyone else in the sense that you are “me”.

Now let’s take a look at the grand scheme of things.  Think of the whole universe. Every star, every planet, every cloud of dust that looks like something inappropriate, it is all the universe.  So where might we fit in all of that? Think of this. The human brain is tremendous at making things feel like a big deal, but don’t get me wrong, this is a good thing.  When we’re getting charged by a bear our mind takes it upon itself to make that the most urgent event in our lives to take care of at the moment. But to really sit and think for a second and think of how our tiny lives fit into the whole of the universe, it’s really quite humbling.  Of everything, our little share of the matter and stardust is quite small. A fraction of a fraction would not be an inaccurate way to describe our space in the universe. Now, this is not to say that our lives are dimensionally limited, but rather that all the space we have even been to or sent objects to, is a very, very small amount of the universe around us.  The riddle here would be, how big of a deal are we to the universe?

 There’s a lot to think about in life.  These riddles, for example, just to give one idea.  We could spend our whole lives comparing ourselves to trees, or asking who we are, or looking up at the stars and wondering if we really are that big of a deal.  Of course, it’s no less than human nature to go on and on with, “what if” this, “what if” that. In reality, we should keep our heads more tuned to things going on here in our slice of the universe; it just might do us a bit more good than what may come to mind.

Signs of Multiple Intelligences in the Bible Part II

  • 2 examples of the importance and/or value of musical intelligence
  • 3 people who are word smart
  • 2 people who use logical intelligence
  • 2 people whose understanding of Jesus is rooted in the intelligence of relationships
  • 1 person who is self smart
  • 3 passages that rely on spatial intelligence
  • 1 person who uses physical intelligence to understand Jesus.

 

 

  • 2 examples of the importance and/or value of musical intelligence are in 1 Samuel 16:23 including David when he played music to calm Saul, and in 2 Chronicles 5:11-14  when the people gather in church and join each other in song and music to praise the Lord.

 

  • 3 people who are word smart are Aaron the Levite in Exodus 4:10-17, who was sent by God to be the voice of others, the Lord Himself in Exodus 4:10-17 getting mad at Moses for questioning him in set B, and lastly, Mary who sits and listens to the words of Jesus to understand him in John 11:5-6.

 

  • 2 people who use logical intelligence are Moses’s father-in-law in Exodus 18:13-27, and Paul in Romans 7:14-23 in set G.

 

  • 2 people whose understanding of Jesus is rooted in the intelligence of relationships are Martha in John 11:5-6 , who believed that if Jesus stayed her brother wouldn’t have died.  Another person is Thomas in John 11:16, who’s intelligence for relationships was displayed when he suggested that all the disciples go with Jesus to be crucified in set E.

 

1 person who is self smart is Mary in Luke 10:38-42 in set A, and Paul in Romans 7:14-23.  Paul displays intrapersonal intelligence through his seemingly expansive understanding of his own self, his inner conflict, the knowledge of how the law affects him personally, and of how what he wants to do in life sometimes conflicts with the law.

 

  • 3 passages that prove spatial intelligence are in Acts 8:26-38 with Philip traveling and seeing the spaces conceptualized by his spatial intelligence. In set B,  Luke 5:4-11 on Peter’s boat in set F, and Matthew 14:24-33 also in set F.  

 

  • 1 person who uses physical intelligence to understand Jesus is Thomas from John 20:24-29 in Set E.  Physical intelligence meaning how Jesus had marks on his hands, feet and side.

 

 

 

 

Signs of Multiple Intelligences in the Bible Part I

Question set A

Luke 10:38-42   

 Summary:      Mary sat at the Lord’s feet and listened to what he was saying.  Mary sat listening to the Lord while Martha, her sister did household work. Martha wanted Mary’s help to do the jobs, but she was listening to Jesus.  Martha asked Jesus to tell Mary to help her do her work but Jesus tells her that Mary chose the best choice, to listen to Jesus.

Answer:    Mary sat at the Lord’s feet and listened to what he was saying.

John 11:5-6  

Summary:    Lazarus grows ill and Jesus stays with him for 2 days while Mary and Martha leave.   

Answer:    Jesus loved Martha, Mary and Lazarus and when he found out that Lazarus was ill he stayed 2 days because he didn’t want to be left alone. 

 

John 11:5-6  

SummaryMartha went to see Jesus and Mary stayed home, and was then upset with Jesus because Lazarus had died.        

Answer: Martha’s  faith in the lord is based on her relationship with Jesus because she believes that if Jesus was with her brother he wouldn’t have died, and she had faith that if he stayed he wouldn’t have died.  Lazarus dies and Martha believes if Jesus stayed, he would still be alive.

Set B

Exodus 4:10-17-

Summary: Moses talks to the lord telling him that he is slow in speech and tongue with the lord responding that he shall be his mouth and tell Moses what to say.  Moses didn’t believe he could do this so he asked the lord if he could send somebody else, this angered the Lord and the lord asked him if he should send his brother Aaron and why Moses shall be the mouth.

Answer:  Aaron’s role in this passage was to be the voice of others, Aaron the Levite is a fluent speaker.  This is a sign of linguistic intelligence.

Acts 8:26-38 – 

Summary:  An Angel from the lord comes and talks to Phillip and the Angel tells him to go south to the road that goes from Jerusalem to Gaza.  Phillip went there after he had been talked to. Meanwhile there was a Eatheopian eunuch, who was in charge of the Eathiopian queens entire treasury who came on a chariot to speak the prophet of Isaya to the queen. Then the spirit tells Philip to join the man sat on the chariot.  He does and asks if he understands what he is reading. He responded with, “How can I unless someone guides me?” and invited philip to sit beside him.  They continued to read the prophet. Philip tells him about Jesus and they went along the road and find water that prevents him from being baptized so philip baptizes him.

Answer:  The two people in this story are Philip and Ethiopian eunuch. The eunuch was baptized because Jesus was allowing him to. 

Set C

1 Samuel 16:23

 Who calms Saul and how? 

Answer:  David calms Saul by playing the lyre.

Summary:  Whenever the evil spirit came upon Saul, David played the lyre to calm him.  

2 Chronicles 5:11-14

Summary:  Priests and musicians gathered to share in the art of music to show their faith in alternative means

Answer:  Before the presence of God fills the temple, the people all gather in song and prayer together to show the Lord their devotion and faith. 

Set D

John 1:3-9

Jesus is described as the beginning of life and all new creation. Without him, nothing would have been created. There would be no light to overcome the darkness.  John was sent by God to prove to people that Jesus is true.

 

Mark 13:24-27

Jesus describes the world in chaos, with the sun going dark. Then said he would come in his glory, and bring light back to the world. If you are in the dark, Jesus can bring the light back. 

Summary: Mark is telling us if we need light look to God because he is the glory and the light of our sky which will shine if you want God to make the place bright.

 

Ezekiel 1: 4-28

Ezekiel uses images to help understand God.  Ezekiel explained what he saw. He told about the four creatures,  that they had four different heads, and they had 2 wings each. He said they walked in a line with their wings touching and went with the spirit, never turning. Ezekiel also explained about the clouds and wind the creatures were surrounded by.

Summary: Ezekiel is telling what creatures may have God created. The answer is God created every living thing and owns everything in the world.

 

 

 

Set E

Exodus 18:13-27 

Summary:  People came to Moses to inquire about God. When they have a dispute, they come to me and I decide between one person or another and I make known to them the statutes and instructions of God. His father-in-law helped him .

Answers:

What is Moses’ problem?

  • Moses’ problem is that he can’t inquire people about God by himself, so he needs help from other people.

Who helps him solve it in a logical step by step way?

  • Moses father-in-law helps him solve it this way.

 

John 11:16

Questions and Answers:

Who has a very matter-of-fact attitude?

  • Thomas has an attitude like that.

What does he say?

  • Thomas says, ‘Let us also go, that we may die with him’.

Summary:  Thomas said to his disciples `Let us also go, that we may die with him.’, showing that Thomas takes his relationship with Jesus very seriously, and sends the message that if one of them is to die, all should die for the one’s sake.  

John 20:24-29

Questions and answers:

Whose need for proof does Jesus understand and accept?

Thomas’s need for proof was understood and accepted by Jesus. 

Summary:  Thomas wasn’t with his fellow disciples when Jesus came to them.  When they told Thomas about it, he didn’t believe them. Thomas said that he would have to see Jesus in his own eyes, touch his hands and his side to believe.  Jesus appeared in front of him, and Thomas believed.  

Set F 

Luke 5:4-11

When does Peter first begin to understand Jesus? 

Answer: Peter started to understand Jesus when Simon and Peter pulled the nets full of fish into the boat and the boat started sinking.  Peter fell to his knees, saying that Jesus shouldn’t help him because he had sinned. Jesus said to Peter that he was forgiven and that He can teach them about His forgiveness. 

Summary: This passage is part of the story in which Jesus tells his disciples, who had very little fortune catching fish on that day, to cast the nets from the other side of the boat.  Peter realizes that Jesus has performed a miracle and presents himself to Jesus very humbly.

Matthew 14:24-33 

What does Peter do when he sees Jesus? 

Jesus appeared to the disciples and said, “Take heart, it is I, do not be afraid”  Peter then answered Jesus and said, “Lord, if it is you, command me to come to you on the water”. Peter did not react the same way as the other disciples that saw, and feared Jesus.  Instead, Peter answered Jesus’ question and said, “Lord, if it is you, command me to come to you on the water.” Jesus then said, “Come.” As Peter got out of the boat, he then started walking on the water and came towards Jesus. While Peter was walking towards Jesus, Peter noticed a strong wind, and began to sink he then cried out to Jesus, “Lord save me!” Jesus then immediately reached out his hand and caught him. Jesus then said “You of little faith, why did you doubt?”. When Peter sees Jesus he answers, and follows him out onto the water. 

Matthew 17:1-8 

What does Peter suggest in this passage? 

Peter suggests that these mountains are a great place to be, so he says he can make three dwellings for Jesus, Moses, and Elijah.  Peter suggests that these mountains are a great place because the sun lights up Jesus’ face like lanterns, and Jesus talks to them shortly after his clothes became dazzling white.

John 13:3-10

What does Jesus do?  How does Peter respond?

This passage is from the time around Jesus’ Passion.  Holy Thursday; when Jesus and His disciples are having the Last Supper in the upper room.  Jesus presents himself to his disciples as a servant, and washes their feet in a basin. When Jesus offers to clean him, Peter responds in a stubborn manner, stating that unless Peter washes Jesus’ feet, Jesus can have no share with him.  Simon Peter continues to say that if Jesus is to clean His disciples, He should not only wash his feet, but also his hands and his head.

Based on these passages, which of the intelligences does Peter often use to understand and respond to Jesus?

Based on these passages, I can infer that Peter responds to Jesus with interpersonal intelligence.  Interpersonal intelligence is knowledge derived from social interaction and relationships with other people.  In the first passage, Peter displays great humility, but Jesus forgave Peter, and offered to teach Peter of his great forgiveness.  This tells us that Peter knows Jesus would have some form of response to his actions, thus further confirming his knowledge of interpersonal intelligence.  Passage two further develops Peter’s responses to Jesus. We read of Peter’s response to Jesus’ pleas for him to come out onto the water with him. Peter comes as Jesus commands him.  In passage three, Peter recognizes the presence of others, and offers to make dwellings for them. Passage four shows another act of Peter’s humility, telling Jesus that his feet, hands and head all need to be washed to really be clean.

Set G

Romans 7:14-23

Who does Paul talk about as he tries to explain law and grace?

Answer: Paul talks about himself and his members when explaining his inner conflicts regarding law and grace.

Summary: Paul explains the inner conflict within himself regarding what he wants to do, and how his wants and graces conflict or coincide with the law.

1 Corinthians 2:7 – 10

Question:  What does Paul say helped reveal the power and the Spirit?

Answer:   Paul revealed the power and the spirit by going to the people and saying to them that he decided to know nothing among the people except Jesus Christ, and he was crucified.  He then tells them his speech was not with plausible words of wisdom but with a demonstration of the Spirit and power.  So that faith is within the power of God.

Summary: Paul went to the people and told them that he decided to know nothing among the people except Jesus Christ, and he was crucified.  He then tells them his speech was not with plausible words of wisdom but with a demonstration of the Spirit and power. So that faith is within the power of God.

2 Corinthians 12: 7-10

Fill in the blanks: Paul understands that in his ______ the ____ that God has given him is visible.

 

Response: Paul understands that in his weakness, the power that God has given him is visible.

Summary: The thorn sent by Satan to Paul is meant to bring out his weakness; weakness being the state in which power is perfected, as stated by God in the passage.  

Commandments of the Modern Catholic Church

I had known that there was 10 Commandments long before the time of Jesus, and another significant commandment was given from Jesus Himself, but what I was not completely aware of in full detail was that the Catholic Church, modern, as we know it today, had five more commandments to it’s faithful. 

The first of the five is to attend mass on Sundays and Holy Days of Obligation, as well as to refrain from servile labour on these same days. Attending masses is an important way of displaying symbolic virtue, I myself do uphold these beliefs.

  Two holy days of obligation that sometimes do not fall on Sundays are the solemnity of Mary, on January 1st, and Christmas on December 25th.

The second requires that Catholics confess their sins at least once per year, a popular time to do which occurs at the beginning of lent.  Each year at the beginning of lent, I attend confession here at the school. It is of great importance that Catholics bring our sins to God so He can forgive us.

Third, the church requires that practicing Catholics who have received their first communion to receive the Eucharist at least once during the Easter season, which lasts from Easter Sunday until Pentecost; 50 days thereafter. 

The fourth calls for us to be aware of days in the liturgical year which call for fasting and abstinence.  This means to fast during lent, observe abstinence from meat on Fridays during Lent and on Ash wednesday.  

Fifth and final, this commandment asks to for us to help in providing for the needs of the church.  While the long and well-known law of the church which imposed a tithe to be paid to fund the church has been abolished in our clergy here in Vermilion, we can still help out in the way of funding.  Each Sunday during the preparation of the gifts after the Homily, Gloria, reading of the Nicene or Apostles creed, there will be baskets passed around meant to collect money.  There is no designated amount of money to be paid, unlike a tithe.  Our donations help to fund the church and accomplish its goals and needs.

In conclusion, these five precepts are a monumental part of the church in the modern day.  Reflection upon these commandments now that I’ve gone and taught myself a thing or two goes to show that each precept is very quite rather relevant in life as a practicing Catholic.

 

Fr Joy’s First Visit

On the morning of September 26/2019, Fr Joy came for a visit to our class.  With no basic theme or context, Fr Joy came to simply tell of his background and who he is.  Fr Joy came to Canada from India, in the province of Kerala in 2017.  Kerala is a province in India about 20 000 square kilometers smaller than our own province of Nova Scotia but has around the same population of Canada.

Fr Joy was ordained a priest in 2012 and came to our Parish here in Vermilion in July 2019.  My first impressions on Fr Joy are good ones.  He’s funny, kind, and knows a lot about the Catholic faith, which are all good characteristics of a priest in today’s world.

The location and size of Kerala compared to other provinces.
A view of the Kerala landscape.
Fr. Joy

What motivates me?

What motivates me?  A simple question, with complex answers, but a simple question nonetheless.  First off,  my answer, or answers, to this simple question without the influence of ‘myBlueprint’ would be that I am motivated by seeing the reward of my hard work paid off by the changes I see in the world around me.  In simpler terms, I want to see how my actions positively change the world.

Now, on the website, I did a survey meant to further define what motivates me.  Personally, I feel motivated to work if I know that work is positively changing lives, and the world. If I know that my hard work is paying off to change peoples’ lives for the better, then I’ll be motivated to work for sure.

Another result of the survey pointed out that I am motivated by recognition for my work. If I know that I’m making a difference in people’s lives, then I would certainly be motivated by the factor of recognition or thanks.

Knowledge of My Own Variety – Language and Science

According to the results of the survey I completed on the ‘myBlueprint’ site, my top subject fields are Science, with language arts close behind, and in the number three spot was ‘creative arts’.  Personally, I’m not sure I see myself as close to pursuing a career in arts as I am to pursuing one In science or language, but results are results.  I’ve always felt more connected personally with language than with the sciences.

In grade one I made what has to be the first-ever piece of writing I did on my own, now, I don’t know why I remember so vividly the exact words I wrote, but these were them:  ‘John ran to the bus’.  After us little grade one students had somewhat completed writing down those simple words, the teacher asked the class a simple question, ‘why did John run to the bus?’.  Now, at the time I was a forgetful little kid, and, with all honesty I still am today.  The personal connection I made to my writing at the time was how I frequently forgot my lunch bag when going places.  This would explain my answer to the teacher’s question.  My answer to her question was that John had forgotten his lunch bag, and was in a rush getting to the bus on time.  Though I know this little example doesn’t seem like much, but since then I’ve applied more and more personal connections into my writing.

As for the majority science portion of my knowledge according to the survey, I do agree that a lot of my knowledge to day is based on around science.  I have always had a passion for the sciences, and this is evident throughout my academic career, as on nearly all my report cards, my science mark is always top three.

The Ten Commandments

1. I am the LORD your God:
you shall not have strange Gods before me.

I am the LORD your God, put Me first above all things in life,  you shall love Me and fear Me.  But do not fear Me in a way that you hide from Me, but rather fear Me in a way that induces respect.

 

2. You shall not take the name of the LORD your God in vain.

You shall keep the name of the Lord your God hallowed, and sacred above all names, for God is the holy one above all else.

 

3. Remember to keep holy the LORD’S Day.

You shall not continue work as is usual for the rest of the week.  You shall not neglect Sundays as a day of rest.

 

4. Honor your father and your mother.

You shall not reject the love of your parents, and you shall not go out of your way to disrespect your parents.

 

5. You shall not kill.

You shall respect human life, and preserve human life, for from the moment of conception to natural passing, human life in any and all forms is sacred.

 

6. You shall not commit adultery.

You shall honor your spouse, have fidelity between you and them, keep things loving, and choose to love each other regardless of flaws.

 

7. You shall not steal.

You shall be thankful to the LORD for all that you own, and if you want more, there’s always more work that can be done to get what you want.  Nothing on this world comes with you after death.

 

8. You shall not bear false witness against thy neighbor.

You shall be truthful to yourself and others no matter the situation, and never lie when testifying to an account of an event.

 

9. You shall not covet your neighbor’s wife.

You shall love your wife, and be eternally grateful and loving with each other.  By being married, you vow to be with each other forever, and coveting your neighbors wife goes against those promises.

 

10.  You shall not covet your neighbor’s goods.

The act of coveting, of wanting more than you have, of desiring that which is someone else’s is impure. You shall take pride in your own goods, and know that hard work in life will be more rewarding than simply being envious.

My Interests

My interests, according to the survey results on the ‘myBlueprint’ website, would compile to suggest I am a ‘consultant’ .  The website told me that consultants are always deep in thought, a natural problem solver, and have good communication and interpersonal skills.  All of these points I can reflect on, and agree with.