Friday, March 25, 2022

Time Transporters

I'm not sure any other medium has the power to transport me back through time like music. And though I can't explain why, certain songs trigger my mind into fully replicating the entire experience, the smells, sounds, lights, people, everything that is associated with that memory is linked directly to the chords of those songs. It happens so frequently that I have started labeling those songs, though not originally I'm afraid, with the term, "Time Transporters". So this week I thought I would describe a few of those songs that hold that special place in my memories.  

I first heard the song "Sailing" by Christopher Cross, while exploring the city of San Francisco in June of 1980 with some friends, and this song seemed to be playing in every store and restaurant we frequented. I remember one morning waking up early to go jogging, (friends that have only known me since the 90's will be shocked at this revelation . . . ) and after my run getting back in my car at Fisherman's Wharf, watching the fog bank slowly retreat into the Pacific, the sun skillfully illuminating that void, and hearing this song on my car radio. Magical times. 

Friday, March 18, 2022

General Stonewall Jackson

Growing up in the South during the 1960's, the belief in the divine goodness of the Confederacy was still a strong thread that ran through our culture. Despite the passing of almost 100 years, there was still a smoldering resentment that coupled with geographic isolation and culture insecurity, resulted in a  admiration for the "Lost Cause". 

(Disclaimer: This does not represent my current opinion regarding the Confederate cause and it's "Lost Cause Myth" which has survived for over 100 years. However, seeing the true colors and motivations of the Southern cause does not reduce my admiration for some of its finest leaders.) 

It is an interesting dynamic, that history is generally not only written by the winners, but by the surviving winners. They get to selectively remember not only their decisions, but in some cases they will choose to discard facts when those facts conflict with their own pathway to glory. This is true of almost every war that has ever been fought, with the exception of the Civil War myth regarding the "Lost Cause". There are a multitude of reasons for this cause, too numerous to cover in this blog, but suffice it to say that rarely have the losers of a war controlled the narrative of a conflict like the Confederacy did after the Civil War.  Yet, I'm getting off topic, because my subject for this week's blog is on one of the legendary commanders during that conflict, a man who didn't have the luxury to control his own storied place in history, General Stonewall Jackson.

With the same last name as the great General Lee himself, it would have been a natural pathway to embrace him as one of my favorite Southern generals of the past. However, I have always gravitated more toward Stonewall Jackson, perhaps because of his aggressive style displayed in several key battles in the war. But as I grew older and learned more about General Jackson, I discovered even more reasons to admire the man beyond the myth. 

Friday, March 11, 2022

Let's Talk Blogs

In 2022, there are over 620 million blogs in the world today, out of over 2.1 billion websites. There are more than 3 billion blog posts published each year worldwide. That’s 8.28 million blog posts published per day, which works out to  5,750 blog posts published each minute. (2022, Internet Live Stats)

Just in the U.S. alone, there are over 31 million active bloggers posting at least once per month. Imagine that, over 31 million voices, creating content and perhaps pouring out their hearts into their words, publishing that content for all the world to see, and for what reason?

Which brings me to my topic for this week's blog, "Why do I write a weekly blog?"

Friday, March 04, 2022

My Thoughts On Psalm 82

This week I'm reprinting a blog entry from Wesley Baines on the topic, "Do other gods exist?" (His views do not necessarily represent my personal opinion on this subject.) 

"Before Me there was no God formed, and there will be none after Me." Isaiah 43:10

The words of God to the Prophet Isaiah are unequivocal. Throughout the Bible, God declares Himself the one and only God of all creation. But the fact that scripture mentions other gods would seem to contradict His words. There is, in fact, a vast amount of scriptural evidence that there are many such “gods”.

The confrontation between Moses and the Egyptian sorcerers is, perhaps, the most visible example. Exodus 7:10-12 reads, “So Moses and Aaron went to Pharaoh and did just as the LORD commanded. Aaron threw his staff down in front of Pharaoh and his officials, and it became a snake. Pharaoh then summoned wise men and sorcerers, and the Egyptian magicians also did the same things by their secret arts. Each one threw down his staff and it became a snake. But Aaron's staff swallowed up their staffs.”

The question is this: how did the Egyptian sorcerers perform real magic?