maybe "rants" isn't the right word. these are simple thoughts about my life. some may be more colorful than others. some language may be offensive, but it depends on your definition of offensive. consider this your warning ;)

09 February 2014

Photo and Blog a Day Challenge-Day 8/28: Frozen

As I left work this evening, I took a second to snap the following picture of the snow blanketing the hood of my car:
Unsatisfied with the degree of detail I wanted to really share, I went for a closer look (RIP Steve Irwin). Here's take two:
This latest snow fall was different in that the larger flakes had arranged themselves rather loosely to where you could see individual flakes. Every time I brushed another stroke across the roof of my car I thought of LeBron's chalk toss.

But in going over the pictures I took today, I chose this one as my official entry for Day 8: Frozen.
It was taken before work, as I sat in my car for a few minutes before going in. Noticing the left most snowflake, I admired the fact that I had a mirrored surface presenting me with a single snowflake in all it's unique glory. As you can tell, another came to join the composition, and by the time I snapped a shot I was happy with, a smaller third one had joined in. How the three single flakes flew in, landing within the proximity for me to capture all three together, was obviously beyond my control, but I'm glad it happened like it did.

So yes--Frozen--and individual snowflakes. I thought of the animated movie Frozen (which was delightful, by the way) and how the image of a single unique snowflake was a symbol for Elsa's castle of isolation. I then heard all the scientists and mathematician's saying, "all snowflakes are unique. no two snowflakes are alike."

And that's what I'm running with today. Science.

DISCLAIMER: Tonight I head full-speed into a territory that I do not often talk except for in person/real time conversation. Why? Because written words can be taken out of context and dissected for immature reasons. And also because having rational, mature discussions is something I actually enjoy whether we agree or not. So if you're easily offended by different views, or views that are stated quite casually, I don't apologize. It's my blog. So yeah, I have home court advantage. But if you're down for Coffee Bean or a beer somewhere, then I'm down.

And now back to irregularly scheduled program...

I'm still rolling around the Bill Nye/Ken Ham debate in my head. After two and a half hours of the evolution/creation "debate" (because it wasn't so much a debate as it was two men talking about their views without as much interaction as other debates have), none of my views have changed.

I did, however, learn in greater detail the two extreme views of Bill Nye (an agnostic who lives by science, evolution, and discovery) and Ken Ham (a Christian who bases all views on the Bible).

In short: I agree with aspects of both evolution and creation.

I do pride myself on my desire to learn and listen, and the ability to question my own views in the spirit of knowledge and forward progress.

I was raised in the Catholic church, attending a Catholic private school for kindergarten, first, and the first few months of second grade (before transferring to a public school). Continuing to attend (by parental decree) I received the sacraments of First Communion, and chose to continue with Confirmation in high school. Not that I blame the Navy (because I don't) but when I moved out and left for boot camp, I made the conscious decision to not attend mass on my own accord.

In my years since then, I had still attended Catholic mass here and there (mostly when returning to where I grew up to see friends from my childhood), but also chose to accompany friends of other religions to their respective churches. I've been to a couple of different Christian churches, a Latter Day Saints...service (the official term escapes me right now), and a few others to see how they celebrate their religions.

I am no longer a practicing Catholic, nor do I affiliate myself with any one religion, but I do believe in a higher power that I'll refer to as God, and that is the central belief in which my spiritual being resides.

That being said, back to Nye and Ham.

I agree with aspects of both evolution and creation.

I won't go into every single detail, nor do I consider myself armed enough with statistics and verses as the two debaters are, but I can say this:

In line with Mr. Ham, I believe in God. For the aspects of worldly creation that science (as Nye defines it) does not have answers for (and for which he wholly admits he does not) I can only look at them as an act of God. For the evolutionary chain, the 65 billion years, carbon-dating, and the like, I side with Nye.


I do not and will not, ever take the path of complete blind belief without the respect for others to ask questions, be questioned, or allow myself room to compromise.

That is where I veer away from Ham's creation model.

Yeah, I get it, I was raised on the same story that many Bible-reading families were. Even to the point of reading the book of Genesis as a family. (Er, well, as a mother and two boys, but that's another story.) But when Ham (and many others) get to the (what I'll call) extreme belief insofar as the Bible is THE ultimate word of God and that which is included within the covers of the text are exactly, literally, and without question, the way things are, should be, and have to be, that is where I say, "Good day, sir."

So, yes. I'm not saying either view is completely right and that the other is wrong. I'm not saying I'm right, and that you're wrong. What I'm saying is that I'll always listen respectfully and reserve the right to ask questions, and I hope you'd do me the same honor.

Anytime I'm faced with the answer of, "because the Bible says so," or "that's just the way it is," then that is where I ask more questions and choose the path of discovery, learning, questions, and predictions.

Because free will. But that's a blog for another time.


  1. You have written your credo. Because it allows for questions and respectful dialogue, it is a welcome challenge to the intransigent. Well done!

  2. I heard of the debate, and though I did not watch it, I feel it's safe to assume that the point was made that either view takes at least a degree of faith:). Since you acknowledge a belief in God, you can continue your search for the truth knowing that the odds are in your favor. Would love to continue in person:)

  3. One of the problems of humanity is the incessant desire to understand where we came from and why. Why are we here of Earth? What is our purpose? What is my purpose? Why am I here? Why was I born who I am? This is not some sort of altruistic impulse to have a greater feel for life as most people who preach seem to think. By preach I refer to booth those of religion, any and all religion, and those preaching from the brick buildings of academia. Each are narrow minded in their pursuit to feel like they know where they have come from and for what reason.

    We are a spec of carbon on an infinite measure of time. We are insignificant. We get such relatively little time on this planet, that spending it arguing over our origins or what happens when we die makes no sense to me. I don't give a fuck if humanity came into being because of the random luck of some sort of primordial ooze and eons of evolutionary changes or if we were all modeled after some holy being. It will not change who I am. It will not change my pursuit of happiness. This knowledge will not make me a better person. I am who I choose to be, nothing more and nothing less.

    If it helps people to create a story of an origin through any level of religion and spirituality; helps them to live a better life, recover from the loss of a loved one, and have the strength to combat the ills of the world, good for them. How does this affect me? How does it matter?

    If it helps to have a concrete and proven life through science where all is absolute and determined. Great, awesome, go for it.

    What do I choose? How do I live? I don't believe in God. I believe God is an imaginary friend for people who are incapable of taking complete responsibility for their own lives. I envy most of these people. Truly, I do. I would be nice to have the weight of my choices lifted from my shoulders, but that will never be my choice.

    However, compassionate respect is something most science people just don't get. They are right. They always have to be right and in order to be fulfilled, they need to preach and convert you to their point of view (sounds familiar), and to that I say fuck you to them as well. While we are insignificant in respect to time, the world and all that is, we are also completely different from any other living organism on earth. We are inherently special, even in the smallest of ways.

    Find what it is that you enjoy and do it. Leave the origins of all life to people who are unfulfilled with the singular life they get to live.

  4. There must be 1,000 different Gods out there. Most believers reject 999 of them. I only reject one more than they do.

  5. Glad you are asking questions, Marlon, and you're leaving yourself open to be questioned. The Creation vs Evolution discussion, beliefs, debate all end up to be simply opinions. No matter who says it. Of course, that's simply my opinion. So the Buddha even said: Do not believe a word I said. Find out for yourself.

    More opinions: words are simply labels, so we can communicate. And that is why the Word became Flesh so we can see and experience what the Word, what God is all about. The words I hear and read are less important than how my way of being affect the world I am in and for whose glory and praise I am doing it.

    I am a practicing catholic (see lower cap c) and a follower of Universal Love as expressed, articulated, and lived by Jesus Christ and Buddha and Gandhi and Rumi and Mother Teresa and Thomas Merton and my wife and all loving human beings in all spiritual traditions. Because that's the truth I live by. Everything that we receive and perceive through all our senses including thinking is noise to distract us from what's real... or to point us to what's real.

    So I close with another opinion by the Buddha, which I think would make Jesus nod yes:
    "In the end only three things matter: how much you loved, how gently you lived, and how gracefully you let go of things not meant for you."

    Always question authority, i.e., the mind.