Sunday Thoughts: What’s It All About, Alfie

What’s it all about, Alfie?
Is it just for the moment we live?
What’s it all about when you sort it out, Alfie?
Are we meant to take more than we give . . . .

Dealing and discussing things with grandchildren for a long time obviously makes one wonder what’s it all about. Here are some of the issued that seem to have risen lately.

Were Adam and Eve Jewish?  I never thought that they had any particular religious beliefs but if you believe in the Bible which is the book of the Jewish history, poems, tales and songs as they pursue the will of Yahweh you have to say that they must have been.

Did Jesus talk about the billions of stars?   Not that I’m a Bible scholar but my limited study in the area never indicated that he did. From that question comes the expected why are there so many stars? Did Jesus know about those stars or did he only know what a person born in Bethlehem would know about the universe?  Never mind the stars, did he know of the people living in other continents of the earth. If he is God wouldn’t he know about all the stars and galaxies and other people? Did He forget He was God when he came to earth and was only a regular man?

Why did God choose the Jews as his chosen people over all the other people in the earth?  This was an easy one to answer because if you believe the Bible you have to believe Adam and Eve were Jewish they were the first people to inhabit the earth. Having created them they were the only people in the world at the time so it followed that they were chosen. God did not choose them over other people since there were no other people.

Were Adam and Eve white?  When I heard this I thought of how it would present a somewhat difficult problem for many people in America. You would have to think knowing what we know today about the people who lived around Jerusalem at the time and were descendants of Adam and Eve that they were dark-skinned and not white. But we really don’t know where they lived. Perhaps it was in Sweden and in that case they would be white. We assume though that they lived around the area we know as Israel today. Jesus was born of Mary who was Jewish so Jesus despite all the European depictions of Him must have been dark-skinned. How then does this fit in with the idea some Christian people in America have that the white people living in America have been chosen by God.

Where did all the other races come from if Adam and Eve were the first man and women?  The problem I had answering this question was the shortness of time in which these different races would have to come about if the Bible was literally true. One writer tells us: “When we start our thinking with God’s Word, we see that the world is about 6,000 years old. When we rely on man’s fallible (and often demonstrably false) dating methods, we can get a confusing range of ages from a few thousand to billions of years, . . . The age of the earth ultimately comes down to a matter of trust—it’s a worldview issue. Will you trust what an all-knowing God says on the subject or will you trust imperfect man’s assumptions and imaginations about the past that regularly are changing?”

We are able to know what the all-knowing God says by reading the Bible. I’ve got 6,000 years to work with. We could see that since the time of the ancient Greeks – about 3,000 years ago – man has not changed much, if at all. There seemed to be no way to work my way around this and come up with an answer how so many different races came about in 6,000 years.

There’s more to consider but for now I have to go back and do better with what’s on the table.

   

8 thoughts on “Sunday Thoughts: What’s It All About, Alfie

  1. Off the trail a bit..Just saw Mathew Whitaker on TV…and , of course, thought of Mugsy from Savin Hill….this is from A True Man For Others by Jim Cotter (page 68) The Jersey Boys
    ” The Guard was a lot of fun because of the 10 guys from Savin Hill who went in together, and we ran the company we were in. We were stationed at Fort Dix, and everybody had to get processed through what they called the reception center. Tow of our guys, Mugsy Whittaker and Joe Small, decided to fake that they were deaf. I tried to get them not to do it because they were going to end up getting separated from us. But they held to their charade and took the hearing tests trying to fake a hearing deficiency. During the exam, they have a box and the guy who’s supposed to be deaf is to press the button when he can hear anything. They turn the volume way up. I remember Joe Small, who was watching Mugsy through the glass, saying to me, “Jim,y ears are ringing.” As he’s watching through the glass, he’s yelling at Mugsy, “Don’t you dare push that button.” Anyway, their charade lasted about two weeks before they were busted and returned to regular duty, but, unfortunately, they were separated from us.”
    Heroes of Savin Hill?

  2. Art, music, literature, simple story telling, dance, sculpture, simple whittling, signing, singing, symbolizing are all manifestations of the Human Being’s creative spirit, which is why I call us Homo Sapiens Artiste . . . .artists, creators . . . .you see it in the cave wall paintings, in the pre-historic flutes made out of bird bones, in a child’s newly fashioned word or newly fashioned string of words: creativity.

    2. Anthropologists tell us through their genetic studies that every human being descended from a small group of people . . .perhaps 100 . . . .perhaps, not too far fetched, a smaller group, or one or two.

    3. People mock poetry, psalms, scripture and literature because “it’s not 100% factual.” But like a story by Faulkner or O’Neil, there’s truth in it.

    4. There is no clash with religion and science. People mock religion until they meet a priest, minister or rabbi who has Ph.D. in biology, anthropology, nuclear physics, literature.

    5. The universe began miraculously from a vibe in the void some 13.5 billion years ago, scientists tell us, and someday, they say, billions of years from now, it will fizzle out and END, or stop expanding and re-collapse on itself. They don’t know. Scientists admit there’s a lot they don’t know, like how Life began, like what Consciousness is, like what Dark Energy and Dark Matter are, or even if they are.

    6. Like the universe beginning from a vibe in the void, LIfe began from a quiver in the muck . . . .how a complex RNA molecule got inside a globular cellular goo with a lipid membrane and began dividing and reproducing itself . . . .well the closer you look, the more mysterious it looks.

    7. Pierre Tielhard De Chardin,a Jesuit Priest with a Ph.D. in anthropology/archaelogy, wrote a book around 1950 about EVOLUTION, and how all living things descended/ascended from a single cell until Man got here. The Phenomenon of Man.

    8. We human beings, Homo Sapiens Artiste, are a mysterious phenomenon, with our artistic and spiritual dimensions, our senses of wonder and awe. God is ineffable, but if we must say something about God, why not defer to what the theologians tell us, to what our faith traditions are. Mine is Christianity. To me, God, the Holy Spirit, a Spiritual Force transfuses and infuses all Space and all Time, and all human affairs, but five times God has acted extraordinarily, exerting perhaps a bit extra spirit or force: (1) When he created the Universe out of zilch. (2) When he created life on earth out of muck. (3) When he infused Homo Sapiens with an artistic spirit/soul and thus made us Homo Sapiens Artiste about 100,000 years ago. (4) When He chose the Jewish people to receive his Word. (5) When He made Mary pregnant with Jesus.

    6. Scientists, I understand, are recently questioning the “multi-universe” theories, as they can never be objectively verified anyway . . .we have enough trouble trying to define the limits and dimensions of this universe we inhabit. And there are those who question the Judaeo-Christian traditions and beliefs, and those who question Science itself . . .think of the vaccine deniers. AND, I HAVE MY DOUBTS AND QUESTIONS ABOUT EVERYTHING, TOO, AND I WILL KEEP ON EXPLORING DOUBTS AND RAISING QUESTIONS UNTIL THE COWS COME HOME. And I will keep on listening to the questions and stories of children. They are thought-provoking and fun.

    7. Now, I’m going to post and see what I wrote . . . .I hope no one quibbles . . . .I hope everyone quibbles . . . .you know even when I agree, I modify . . .I call it “A variation on a theme.” we all sing our own songs . . .Jackson Brown sang, in “To a Dancer”: “In the end there is one dance you’ll do alone.” I say, every dance you do is your own. Feel free to freely express yourself muli-media-lly.

  3. Humans have been successful as a species because we like to understand and explain things. Religion was useful to explain things we didn’t know. This always became awkward when scientific explanations were figured out. A human dilemma is how to deal with a conflict between things we believe and things we know.

  4. Hillary made one of the biggest blunders in political history when she said she was going to close down the coal mines. Hundreds of thousands of voters in Ohio, Kentucky, W. Virginia and Pennsylvania were alienated by her boast. She lost all four states. Aren’t Biden and the other Democrats falling into the same trap by saying they will end the use of fossil fuels in ten years? How will people heat their hones? Not a good strategy. 2. About 150 years ago man started to use fossil fuels in large quantities. In the middle of the 19th century life expectancy was 50 years. For a slave in America it was 40 years. For a person in Ireland it was 25 years. There were around 1.5 billion people on the planet then. Today thanks to fossil fuels there are 7.5 billion people on earth. They have a life expectancy of over 70 years . The planet has food surpluses and people are healthier. The environment in developed countries is much cleaner. Happy days are hear again. 2.Henry is right. Everything about LeMaitre’s theory has been validated. Jesus said we were all chosen. Whether Jesus was a Caucasian, Asian or African is inconsequential. His race doesn’t matter. His message does. MLK said judge a person by the content of his character not the color of his skin. Race doesn’t matter. If America was a racist country why would hundreds of millions of Black and Brown people be trying to come here? 3. Was Epstein murdered or was it a suicide? Was it just incompetence on the guards part or something more nefarious? Was Whitey’ transfer to a dangerous W.Virginia prison just a mistake or did prison officials or those in the DOJ order it knowing the consequences? A full investigation of both deaths should take place by someone honest. Don’t trust the DOJ or FBI to find the truth if it implicates them.

    1. Thatcher did close the coal pits in Wales and look where it got her!

      “Today thanks to fossil fuels there are 7.5 billion people on earth.”

      So that’s where babies come from?

      “MLK said judge a person by the content of his character not the color of his skin.”

      Lester Maddox said, “I don’t judge a man by the color of his skin. I judge him by the size of his nostrils.” Thank you, Chevy Chase.

      It’s all good, Bill. Peace to you.

  5. As posed in The Name Of The Rose; Did Jesus own the clothes that he wore?

    When I was about 8 years old I asked my father, a scholarly man, where God came from. I never got a satisfactory answer. I was told by him, and many people, that God had no beginning and he had no end. That is in the Torah as well. So I ask you, where did God come from?

    I am quite interested in some of the theories of Roger Penrose. Check him out.

  6. In some ways, the history of science is the history of a philosophical resistance to mythical explanations of reality. In the ancient world, when we asked “Where did the world come from?” we were told creation myths. In the modern world, we are instead told a convincing scientific story: Big Bang theory, first proposed in 1927 by the Belgian Roman Catholic priest Georges Lemaître. It is based on observations that galaxies appear to be flying apart from one another, suggesting that the universe is expanding. We trace this movement back in space and time to nearly the original point of the explosion, the single original atom from which all the universe emerged 14 billion years ago.

    http://nautil.us/issue/75/story/the-big-bang-is-hard-science-it-is-also-a-creation-story-rp

    In 1933 at the California Institute of Technology, some of the greatest scientists of the time from around the world gathered to hear a series of lectures.
    After Lemaître delivered his lecture and theory, Albert Einstein stood up and said: “This is the most beautiful and satisfactory explanation of creation to which I ever listened.”

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