Archive for October, 2012

i posted about the seven deadly sins according to Mahatma Gandhi and now i ’m posting the seven Knightly Virtues. i know it’s a little dated as we don’t have knights today, but… but i think that inside every man is a desire to be a knight in shining armour and inside every woman is the desire to be rescued by a knight in shining armour, that is if she hasn’t been already.

“The quality of mercy is not strained; It droppeth as the gentle rain from heaven Upon the place beneath. It is twice blessed- It blesseth him that gives, and him that takes.”   William Shakespeare

Too much mercy… often resulted in further crimes which were fatal to innocent victims who need not have been victims if justice had been put first and mercy second.”   Agatha Christie

Mercy – my words and attitude can be painful weapons in this world, which is why i as a knight in shining armor exercises mercy in my dealings with others, creating a sense of peace and community, rather than engaging in hostility and antagonism.

Mercy – compassionate or kindly forbearance shown toward an offender, an enemy, or other person in one’s power; compassion, pity, or benevolence.

We have a powerful and merciful God. He knows i have fallen short of His glory, but His mercy is incredible. That is why as a disciple i need to always be aware of His love and His mercy. A day shouldn’t go by without my praising God. i may be barely able to comprehend His mercy, but i know that it is there.

Hebrews 4:16 Let us therefore come boldly to the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need.

Titus 3:5 He saved us, not because of any works of righteousness that we had done, but because of His own pity and mercy, by [the] cleansing [bath] of the new birth (regeneration) and renewing of the Holy Spirit,

“Do not stand on a high pedestal and take 5 cents in your hand and say, “here, my poor man”, but be grateful that the poor man is there, so by making a gift to him you are able to help yourself. It is not the receiver that is blessed, but it is the giver. Be thankful that you are allowed to exercise your power of benevolence and mercy in the world, and thus become pure and perfect.”   Swami Vivekananda

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Just a reminder, i posted about the seven deadly sins according to Mahatma Gandhi and now i ’m posting the seven Knightly Virtues. i know it’s a little dated as we don’t have knights today, but… but i think that inside every man is a desire to be a knight in shining armour and inside every woman is the desire to be rescued by a knight in shining armour, that is if she hasn’t been already.

Today’s Virtue is JUSTICE…

“I  tremble for my country when I reflect that God is just; that his justice cannot  sleep forever”. – Thomas  Jefferson

Leviticus 19:15 “Do not pervert justice; do not show partiality to the poor or favoritism to the great, but judge your neighbor fairly.”

Justice – As a knight in shining armor (and that’s making the assumption that i am one) i am to hold myself to the highest standard of behavior, and know that finding and using “loop holes” on the little rules weakens the fabric of society for everyone.

Justice – the moral principle determining just conduct, the quality of being just, righteousness, equitableness, or moral rightness.

For todays post i am looking at Social Justice?

It is essential that i as a Christian must clearly understand what social justice includes. On the surface, the term has a positive connotation that conveys a seemingly strong sense of virtue and morality. However, social justice involves much more than a superficial label or feelings of compassion. It must involve a clear understanding of each social problem, the root cause of the problem, and the best solution for the problem.

Social justice has two key components:

  1. social – “living together in communities or organized groups”, and
  2. justice – “the upholding of what is just, especially fair treatment and due reward in accordance with honor, standards, or law” (American Heritage Dictionary).

Combining these two concepts, gives me a working definition “Social justice exists when people get what they are due from their particular group or community.” This brings up another important question: What do i deserve from my particular social group or society? Some say each person deserves an equal opportunity to work and acquire their society’s resources; others say each person deserves an equal share, or at least a basic share.

As an American i am entitled to at least three basic inalienable rights specified in the Declaration of Independence: “life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.” While these rights are not directly protected by God – He even permits some people to be born into social conditions that threaten their life, liberty, and opportunities – He expects human societies to uphold these rights and He holds people accountable for failing to do so. i believe that all people within a society actually possess a certain portion of society’s “benefits and burdens

Acts 17:30-32 – In the past God overlooked such ignorance, but now he commands all people everywhere to repent. For he has set a day when he will judge the world with justice by the man he has appointed. He has given proof of this to all men by raising him from the dead.”

“Human progress is neither automatic nor inevitable… Every step toward the goal of  justice requires sacrifice, suffering, and struggle; the tireless exertions and  passionate concern of dedicated individuals.” – Martin Luther King,  Jr.

i posted about the seven deadly sins according to Mahatma Gandhi and now i ‘m posting the seven Knightly Virtues. i know it’s a little dated as we don’t have knights today, but… but i think that inside every man is a desire to be a knight in shining armour and inside every woman is the desire to be rescued by a knight in shining armour, that is if she hasn’t been already.

SEVEN KNIGHTLY VIRTUES:

In truth, there was no such thing as a uniform code of knightly behavior and attitude in the Middle Ages. Many people have compiled lists of virtuous qualities, called the “knightly virtues,” which they felt defined chivalry.

Within those lists, several common themes were found. By combining these, i have created what i consider to be the seven knightly virtues.

All of a knight’s virtues were symbolized by the equipment he used, and nothing was more symbolic than the knight’s spurs. The spurs represented courage, and when a young man was knighted, it was sometimes said he had “won his spurs.”

Courage – The discovery that i may not win, and trying when i know i can lose.

Courage – More than bravado or bluster, today’s knight in shining armor must have the courage of the heart necessary to undertake tasks which are difficult, tedious or unglamorous, and to graciously accept the sacrifices involved.

Courage – The power or quality of dealing with, or facing danger, fear, pain, etc., The courage of ones convictions, the confidence to act in accordance with one’s beliefs and convictions.

For me this is about the courage of my spiritual convictions. i attempt to take them seriously but often as you know fall short. Often my courage seems to get weak or diluted. Comfort and contentment creeps in as well and as John Maxwell says, “If we’re growing, we’re always going to be out of our comfort zone.”. When comfort or contentment isn’t the problem fear seems to be the culporate.

And what i know about fear is this, “God has not given me a spirit of fear, but of power, of love and of a sound mind.”

COURAGEPsalm 56:3-4 When I am afraid, I will put my trust in Thee. In God, whose word I praise, In God I have put my trust; I shall not be afraid. What can [mere] man do to me?

Worship without sacrifice.” – Psalm 51:16-17 For You delight not in sacrifice, or else would I give it; You find no pleasure in burnt offering. My sacrifice [the sacrifice acceptable] to God is a broken spirit; a broken and a contrite heart [broken down with sorrow for sin and humbly and thoroughly penitent], such, O God, You will not despise.

“I can safely say, on the authority of all that is revealed in the Word of God, that any man or woman on this earth who is bored and turned off by worship is not ready for heaven.” ― A.W. Tozer

“If there is no laughter, Jesus has gone somewhere else. If there is no joy and freedom, it is not a church: it is simply a crowd of melancholy people basking in a religious neurosis. If there is no celebration, there is no real worship.”  ― Steve Brown

“Many Spirit-filled authors have exhausted the thesaurus in order to describe God with the glory He deserves. His perfect holiness, by definition, assures us that our words can’t contain Him. Isn’t it a comfort to worship a God we cannot exaggerate?” ― Francis Chan

Many enter the chamber (garden) to meet God while they are still emotionally out of breath. Silence and solitude, listening to God and meditation all take time………….. time some are not willing to give.

i am going to close out these posts with these final words regarding each of these seven deadly sins.

“i must do today what others will not do so that tomorrow i can do what others can not.” i must “worship with sacrifice” today in a way that others will not, so that tomorrow i can do what others can not.

Commerce without morality – “So I will cast her on a bed of suffering, and I will make those who commit adultery with her suffer intensely, unless they repent of her ways.   I will strike her children dead.  Then all the churches will know that I am he who searches hearts and minds, and I will repay each of you according to your deeds.  (From Revelation 2:22-23)”

Commerce without morality means conducting business without any sense of right and wrong and ethics.

Do not be too moral. You may cheat yourself out of much life. Aim above morality. Be not simply good; be good for something. – Henry  David Thoreau

In day-to-day commerce, television is not so much interested  in the business of communications as in the business of delivering audiences to  advertisers. People are the merchandise, not the shows. The shows are merely the  bait. – Les  Brown

A basic principle of the “Christian” moral life is that every person is made in the image of God. He gave me an immortal soul and through the gifts of intelligence and reason enables me to understand the order of things established in his creation. God has also given me free will to seek and love what is true, good, and beautiful. Sadly, because of the fall, i suffer the impact of sin, which darkens my mind, weakens my will, and inclines me to sin. Baptism delivers me from sin but not from its effects—especially the inclination to sin. Within me, then, is both the powerful urge toward the good because i am made in the image of God, and the darker impulses toward evil because of the effects of sin.

Christ’s dying and rising offers me new life in the Spirit, whose saving grace delivers me from sin and heals sin’s damage within me. Thus i speak of the value, dignity, and goal of human life, even with its imperfections and struggles. Human life, as a profound unity of physical and spiritual dimensions, is sacred. It is distinct from all other forms of life, since it alone is imprinted with the very image of its Creator.

Continuing with Mahatma Gandhi’s Seven Deadly Sins and thus my comments on them as they pertain to me. This goes perfectly with my “fearless” moral inventory. The verses are those that i have selected to go with that particular sin as well as are the quotes. So what i’m saying is that the verses and the quotes are my comments. It is taking me much longer than i thought it would to find the right ones.

How appropriate today’s post is. i am in no way making any type of political statement. This is about humanity and today is simply about humanity regarding politics and the principles of politics but more importantly those in politics.

Seven Deadly Sins – Mahatma Gandhi

Politics without principle – Galatians 6:7 Do not be deceived and deluded and misled; God will not allow Himself to be sneered at (scorned, disdained, or mocked by mere pretensions or professions, or by His precepts being set aside.) [He inevitably deludes himself who attempts to delude God.] For whatever a man sows, that and that only is what he will reap.

“Better to write for yourself and have no public, than to write for the public and have no self.”  ― Cyril Connolly

“A people that values its privileges above its principles soon loses both.” ― Dwight D. Eisenhower

Both of these quotes are so true. All of the meandiam posts reflect me, myself and they do so without any reservation. Thus not everyone, even those close to me agrees with my thoughts views or actions, i am okay with that. my intended readers are the generations of my family who to may think i was wacked out or an extremist, i am also okay with that. my intent is to represent me and who i am, what i believe, what i do and what i do not do and with some explanation explain why.

i’ll close by reminding everyone to vote! i do not care nor have an opinion as to whom you should vote for but use the knowledge (Borrowing a little from yesterdays post) you have to make a principled decision. Use your knowledge and experience the power of it, and it matters not whether you actually win, or lose, it;s the process of our great country even with all it’s faults.

Continuing with Mahatma Gandhi’s Seven Deadly Sins and thus my comments on them as they pertain to me. This goes perfectly with my “fearless” moral inventory. The verses are those that i have selected to go with that particular sin as well as are the quotes. So what i’m saying is that the verses and the quotes are my comments. It is taking me much longer than i thought it would to find the right ones.

Seven Deadly Sins – Mahatma Gandhi

Knowledge without character – Proverbs 1:7 The reverent and worshipful fear of the Lord is the beginning and the principal and choice part of knowledge [its starting point and its essence]; but fools despise skillful and godly Wisdom, instruction, and discipline.

Character is like a tree and reputation like a shadow. The  shadow is what we think of it; the tree is the real thing. – Abraham  Lincoln

“The only true wisdom is in knowing you know nothing.”  ― Socrates

“When you know better you do better.” ― Maya Angelou

i have recently learned that i have more knowledge than i have obedience, so i cant say that i agree with Maya. I know better quite often but sometimes do worse. On the other hand i agree completely with Socrates The more i know the less i know has been a saying of mine for the past 5 years.

They say that knowledge is power but i would not necessarily agree as i know lot’s of people who have vast amounts of knowledge but because it’s unapplied it serves no real purpose. That goes for me as well. With all my knowledge i could be brilliant but it’s untried, unapplied, and unproven to have given me any power. Perhaps just the ramblings of an almost 61-year-old.

Continuing with Mahatma Gandhi’s Seven Deadly Sins and thus my comments on them as they pertain to me. This goes perfectly with my “fearless” moral inventory. The verses are those that i have selected to go with that particular sin as well as are the quotes. So what i’m saying is that the verses and the quotes are my comments. It is taking me much longer than i thought it would to find the right ones.

Seven Deadly Sins – Mahatma Gandhi

Science without humanity – Romans 1:18-23 But God’s angry displeasure erupts as acts of human mistrust and wrongdoing and lying accumulate, as people try to put a shroud over truth. But the basic reality of God is plain enough. Open your eyes and there it is! By taking a long and thoughtful look at what God has created, people have always been able to see what their eyes as such can’t see: eternal power, for instance, and the mystery of his divine being. So nobody has a good excuse. What happened was this: People knew God perfectly well, but when they didn’t treat him like God, refusing to worship him, they trivialized themselves into silliness and confusion so that there was neither sense nor direction left in their lives. They pretended to know it all, but were illiterate regarding life. They traded the glory of God who holds the whole world in his hands for cheap figurines you can buy at any roadside stand.

“The saddest aspect of life right now is that science gathers knowledge faster than society gathers wisdom.”  – Isaac Asimov

To me this says, that if science is left to its own without thinking about the consequences to humanity or mankind we will end up with a lot of inventions and scientific items that could be harmful to humanity.

Example, while we get a lot of value out of atomic energy the technology was and is also used in a destructive way. Biological research that discovers a cure for a disease could be turned around and made into something that could be used as a chemical weapon.

Unknown Author: Not to destroy but to construct, I hold the unconquerable belief that science and peace will triumph over ignorance and war that nations will come together not to destroy but to construct and that the future belongs to those who accomplish most for humanity.

Continuing with Mahatma Gandhi’s Seven Deadly Sins and thus my comments on them as they pertain to me. This goes perfectly with my “fearless” moral inventory. The verses are those that i have selected to go with that particular sin as well as are the quotes. So what i’m saying is that the verses and the quotes are my comments. It is taking me much longer than i thought it would to find the right ones.

Seven Deadly Sins – Mahatma Gandhi

Pleasure without conscience – Ecclesasties 2:1-11 I said to myself, “Let’s go for it—experiment with pleasure, have a good time!” But there was nothing to it, nothing but smoke. What do I think of the fun-filled life? Insane! Inane! My verdict on the pursuit of happiness? Who needs it? With the help of a bottle of wine and all the wisdom I could muster, I tried my level best to penetrate the absurdity of life. I wanted to get a handle on anything useful we mortals might do during the years we spend on this earth. Oh, I did great things: built houses, planted vineyards, designed gardens and parks and planted a variety of fruit trees in them, made pools of water to irrigate the groves of trees. I bought slaves, male and female, who had children, giving me even more slaves; then I acquired large herds and flocks, larger than any before me in Jerusalem. I piled up silver and gold, loot from kings and kingdoms. I gathered a chorus of singers to entertain me with song, and—most exquisite of all pleasures— voluptuous maidens for my bed. Oh, how I prospered! I left all my predecessors in Jerusalem far behind, left them behind in the dust. What’s more, I kept a clear head through it all. Everything I wanted I took—I never said no to myself. I gave in to every impulse, held back nothing. I sucked the marrow of pleasure out of every task—my reward to myself for a hard day’s work!Then I took a good look at everything I’d done, looked at all the sweat and hard work. But when I looked, I saw nothing but smoke. Smoke and spitting into the wind. There was nothing to any of it. Nothing.

Do not bite at the bait of pleasure, till you know there is no hook beneath it. – Thomas Jefferson

i am selfish to a degree.  i want what gives me pleasure and makes me happy.  However, every action i take has consequences. It is easy to be lured into thinking the grass is greener on the other side or that others have life so much better than i do. Regardless of my circumstance, it can be tempting to shirk my responsibilities, rationalize my actions and chase after the pleasure of what i want without listening to my conscience.  Of course, this never really works out.  It may provide some short-term satisfaction, but in the end it will leave me feeling guilty, empty and depressed. my best life is when it is principled, disciplined and guided by a well-honed ability to listen to the Holy Spirit.

i came across Mahatma Gandhi’s Seven Deadly Sins and thus i thought i would comment on them as they pertain to me. This goes perfectly with my “fearless” moral inventory. The verses are those that i have selected to go with that particular sin as well as are the quotes. So what i’m saying is that the verses and the quotes are my comments. It is taking me much longer than i thought it would to find the right ones.

Seven Deadly Sins – Mahatma Gandhi

Wealth without workProverbs 13:11 Wealth [not earned but] won in haste or unjustly or from the production of things for vain or detrimental use (such riches) will dwindle away, but he who gathers little by little will increase (his riches). If you have money, but no character, you are still going to be miserable. Character, which comes from right living, is its own reward. – Pastor Pauly

One of the challenges for me as an American is its wealthy lifestyle. It has become so necessary to live a certain way and thus in the past i was willing to work my life away trying to keep up! i can tell you that i am not yet willing to pray as Agur, did but moving in that direction is enticing.

“O God, I beg two favors from you before I die. First, help me never to tell a lie. Second, give me neither poverty nor riches! Give me just enough to satisfy my needs. For if I grow rich, I may deny you and say, “Who is the LORD?” And if I am too poor, I may steal and thus insult God’s holy name. (Proverbs 30:7-9)  May God preserve me from the deadly sin of wealth without work.