“The time has come,” the walrus said, “to talk of many things…”

Philosophical thoughts on life, the universe, and everything.

Job 3 and Snow December 4, 2007

So today is my day to write about Job 3.  This is the first chapter that Job begins to question various things.

Job curses the day he was born in this chapter.  The language here is highly poetic.  He talks about where he would be if he had never been born or had died at birth — it’s great literarily.

The most interesting verse in this chapter is verse 23.  “Why is light given to a man whose way is hidden, and whom God has hedged in?”  He’s questioning the meaning of suffering in this verse.  Now, since I already know the end of the story, I know what it is that the ultimate answer to this question is.  But it’s interesting to know that Job struggled with it.  Job is always presented as a righteous man…but he also questions things like the meaning of suffering.  It’s not just those of us who really aren’t all that righteous.

It’s also interesting that through all of this Job doesn’t commit suicide.  He keeps saying, “It would be better if I were dead!” but he never actually kills himself.  It’s kind of intruiging.  It also tells us quite a bit about the ethics of suicide, I think.  Job had every reason to kill himself, according to today’s society.  Many people in less desparate positions have committed suicide, but Job — who had lost everything he had except his wife and his three friends — didn’t.  Job is counted as a righteous man.  It’s interesting that he didn’t.  It seriously does tell us a lot about the ethics of suicide.

Well, that’s all for Job 3.

Beyond the “Read More”:  thoughts on snow



Many Things December 3, 2007

Filed under: Daily Devotions,Meditations,Philosophy,Religion — ithewalrus @ 11:14 pm

I’ve decided that my blog’s title is particularly apt for my personality and the way I think, haha! Today I have three posts that I could write. One is on Job 2, one is on Jeremiah 42:6, and one is on evolution. Decisions, decisions, decisions…well, I think I’ll start with Jeremiah 42:6, because it just popped out at me, and do one of those spiffy little “read more…” things when I get done, and do Job 2. Evolution can wait for a later date.


So, then, Jeremiah 42:6.


Whether it is pleasant or unpleasant, we will listen to the voice of the LORD our God to whom we are sending you, so that it may go well with us when we listen to the voice of the LORD our God.

I think this verse really speaks to us today. A lot of the time, Christians just want to listen to the part of the Bible that they like, that is comfortable for them, and they don’t want to have to do any other part of it. It’s become so that Christianity is all about ourselves. That’s why it’s so shocking to us when God asks us to do something we really don’t want to do. We’re all like “No! I don’t want to do that!” and go off and do our own thing. (which, in fact, is what the isrealites end up doing. They’re wanting Jeremiah to go talk to God so that he can tell them what God wants…and then they end up doing the opposite because they were stupid.)  That’s the pleasant or unpleasant part by the way.

Another interesting thing is that the Israelites are indeed sending Jeremiah to talk to God.  I realize that things were different back then and all that, and that there were different rules and regulations on who could talk to God because Christ hadn’t come yet and so on and so forth, but it’s just a little bit strange, don’t you think?  Like they were too afraid to go talk to God themselves.  It definitely strikes me as odd.

 Then the last part: “so that it may go well with us when we listen to the voice of the LORD our God.”  I think that’s a concept most people have trouble getting their hands around: that it actually will go well with us if and when we listen to the voice of the LORD our God.  It actually will.  No matter how inconvenient following God’s law seems, it’s actually the best way to live.

Wow I managed to get three paragraphs out of once verse, haha!



Picture December 1, 2007

Filed under: Life,Philosophy — ithewalrus @ 5:45 pm
Tags: , , ,

You may notice the flower picture at the top of this post. It’s a lovely picture, isn’t it? I took it a few springs ago, with my usually unhappy digital camera. I was pretty impressed with the way it turned out.

As I was looking through my photos, though, and I saw that picture, it made me remember how fast things change. So many times we humans just go through life without recognizing the rapidity of the change we’re experiencing. We change a lot as people, we really do, and I think sometimes we forget to notice. For example, in just the past couple of months, I’ve noticed that I’ve become more self-centered. Well, humans are generally self-centered, but it’s been kind of a downward trend. And I’ve seen my sister changing as well…I don’t want to go into that in detail. So often we don’t notice things like this though.

And why not? I think it’s because the world is in constant change anyways. Chaos theory. If you do the same thing over and over again, with enough variations, eventually everything will explode and go crazy. It’s really complicated and involves imaginary numbers. But oFractalut of all this chaos, all this change, comes something that looks like the picture to the right. This is a mandelbrot. It’s a fractal. It was created by running one formula over and over again, iterating itself, and using different imaginary numbers. And look at the result. It’s gorgeous. It’s infinitely complex — I’ve played with an applet one of these, and if you zoom in bazillions of times, you eventually end up with something that looks like the whole thing — but it was created with a completely simple complex.

And if you even change the starting number a little bit, it won’t happen.

That’s the coolest thing about fractals, and mandelbrots, and chaos theory. If you begin with a different starting value, it does nothing like the same thing. It’s so strange. And it’s so much like our lives. If even one little thing was changed about our lives, we would not be where we are today. Another example: I didn’t get accepted into the Tecumseh singers when I was in sixth grade. Yes, yes, very sad. Because of this, I transferred schools. (It seems like such a stupid reason to transfer schools in retrospect…ah well.) I ended up at a private Christian school, which has helped me grow soo much closer to God. Because of my growing closer to God, I decided to attend a Christian university. I had a list of about seven that I was going to choose from (Calvin, Wheaton, Taylor, Goshen, Bethel, Grace, Asbury), plus two private secular colleges (Oberlin and MIT). I could keep going and going and going, but to make a long story short, I chose Taylor because of a summer camp. And I’m sure that this has opened up my future in so many ways. However, where would I be if I had been accepted into the Tecumseh Singers? I don’t know, but surely not where I am now.

As I look back at my past, I cannot help but see God’s hand in all of these little tiny “chaos points” in my life. He is working everything out the way that He wants it to be, and His plan is more perfect than we can ever imagine. Look at how He’s used even the tiniest things in my life to determine where I go to college, and what I do…and most importantly, where I am in my relationship with Him!

So look for the little changes. Look for the points in your life where you could have split off into two different directions. And look at where you are. It’s amazing. And it’s God’s hand working in your life.