Jewish date: 22 ’Av 5769.
Today’s holidays: Wednesday of the Nineteenth Week of Ordinary Time, Feast of Heracles, Feast Day of William Blake, Feast for the First Night of the Prophet and His Bride.
Today’s quasi-holidays: Vinyl Record Day, International Youth Day.
Relevant to Divine Misconceptions:
- “Cypriots seeking love potions wear away saints' tomb”: Before stealing a chunk of poor Saint Agapitikos’s tomb to make a love potion, one might want to reflect a bit on where miraculous power is supposed to come from. No matter how great a person Saint Agapitikos was and how much favor he had or still has in the eyes of God, Saint Agapitikos is still a man. Any powers he might have he has only through the Divine Will. As such, anyone wishing to tap into such powers really ought to ask whether one’s actions are in accord with the Divine Will first, lest God deem one unworthy and refuse to grant what is desired. As such, anyone wishing to chip away part of Saint Agapitikos’s tomb to use as a love potion ought to first ask whether such behavior really is in accord with the tenets of Christianity and whether there might be better ways to achieve one’s goal, such as a better expression of one’s love to the object of one’s desire.
- More theological musings from my recent trip: I was introduced to the simulation game The Sims, in which one creates virtual people (or rather fairly stupid automata which superficially resemble humans) and manipulates them into doing what one wants. I was quickly reminded of the movie Bruce Almighty, in which a man who is angry with how God runs the Universe is temporarily given by God God-like powers over his local area; said man proceeds to abuse said powers and show he has no clue how to make the Universe run any better than it is run already. It was very easy, too easy, to make the simulated characters do silly and immoral things for no good reason. (In my case, this consisted of making my characters use joy-buzzers on and throw water balloons at standard game characters.) This puts the sad story of Oedipus, who was predestined by the Greek gods to kill his father and marry his mother for no good reason, into perspective. (The Greek gods are not famous for concern for human welfare.) I am also very glad my own god, YHWH, does not take such a trivial attitude towards humanity.
- “Swine Flu Fever”
- “Are Germ-Killing Soaps Affecting Dolphin Development?”
- “Do food stamps lead to obesity?”