Bible Experiment Acts

Going to launch this one as more of an op-ed on the times and what is going on in the world today. Definitely a different tact, but not unprecedented seeing as though the anonymous atheist that had this idea before me did exactly that all the time. But let me set the current state of affairs up for those of you that are reading this in the future. Trump has been in office 1 week. And there are widespread protests in the streets decrying his ban on Muslims coming into the country from a number of Middle East countries. It is an insular and ignorant view of the world in my opinion. And it sickens me to see where “my party” is going.

But I will say this, the world has seen much much worse leadership in just the past several thousand years.

Caligula ruled from 37-41 and Nero ruled from 54 to 68. Nero and Caligula, arguably both insane. Or pretending to be – historians can’t decide – but I can’t decide which is worse. These are the guys that the people Acts were dealing with when this book was written. And if you know anything about Nero or Caligula, were maniacal, evil men. The wars between Rome and the Jews were so intense that enormous temple in Jerusalem was destroyed not too long the events of the gospels played out.

The Fox’s Book of Martyrs tells of all manner of evil set out against the people of Rome and the surrounding territories. But particularly set out against the Christians. Nero needed light for his dinner parties? He’d impale a long run of Christians on spikes, then tar them, and then set them alight. Here, here is a quote directly from Fox’s to back up what I am saying:

“Nero even refined upon cruelty, and contrived all manner of punishments for the Christians that the most infernal imagination could design. In particular, he had some sewed up in skins of wild beasts, and then worried by dogs until they expired; and others dressed in shirts made stiff with wax, fixed to axletrees, and set on fire in his gardens, in order to illuminate them. This persecution was general throughout the whole Roman Empire; but it rather increased than diminished the spirit of Christianity. In the course of it, St. Paul and St. Peter were martyred.”

This is the era within which Acts was written. And just from that standpoint I would assume that it would be interesting, or even intriguing. This group of people was being blamed for the burning of Rome by a mad dictator who had set it alight because he wanted all of the world to burn before he died. And what did this people do throughout? Well, why don’t we review the book and see?

Let’s Kick Acts Off…

So, to understand the book of Acts you first need to understand that Luke and Acts are actually one book. Luke starts with the birth of Christ and ends with His death and resurrection. Acts continues exactly where Luke left off and joins the disciples as they cower in their houses wondering if Rome was going to run through their midst and kill them all for dissidence. They had just watched the Christ ascend on a cloud into heaven. Now what?! They were afraid. And shocked at Christ’s leaving. And then Acts carries this story forward and tells the story of how the disciples started this little thing called the Church. So yeah, Acts is a bigly (sorry, I am already making fun of Trump, and I’m not even talking about him, or anything even remotely related) important book.

So Acts starts off with the disciples with Jesus in Jerusalem after he raised from the dead. They had begun to assume that Jesus was back for good even though he kept saying that he was going to leave. No no no no. And sure enough, within the first few verses of Acts he ascends into heaven, riding on a cloud. So now what? The disciples are wigging out. Afraid. Unclear what to do next. And completely spooked. I mean, after all, the Pharisees, Sadducees, Herod, all of Rome, and pretty much everyone else in between, wanted the disciples dead. So they hid in an upper room.


But then Pentecost came. The disciples are spending time talking and praying, and crowds are assembling. And out of the blue, a wind sweeps through the city. And the Christians begin shouting out about how awesome God is, in other languages. And if you didn’t know it, Jerusalem was at a major crossroads, so there were tons of different people from various kingdoms and people. So people started saying, uhm…. guys, you are saying amazing things in my native tongue. What is that about? Here’s literally what they said:

“And when this sound occurred,” [the great rushing wind] “the crowd came together, and were bewildered because each one of them was hearing them speak in his own language. They were amazed and astonished, saying, “Why, are not all these who are speaking Galileans? And how is it that we each hear them in our own language to which we were born? Parthians and Medes and Elamites, and residents of Mesopotamia, Judea and Cappadocia, Pontus and Asia, Phrygia and Pamphylia, Egypt and the districts of Libya around Cyrene, and visitors from Rome, both Jews and proselytes, 11Cretans and Arabs-we hear them in our own tongues speaking of the mighty deeds of God.”

And the Christians said. No idea. And the response? YOU GUYS ARE DRUNK!!! Seriously, they said that. Which, we’d say today I think! hahah.

Then Peter steps up onto a balcony and yells out to the thousands of people now that have assembled trying to figure out what is going on. And he says, look, it’s 9 am… we aren’t drunk. What you are seeing is the fulfillment of prophesy… the Prophet Joel to be specific. And then Peter walked this cat back, and explained exactly what was going on. Now some of these guys were Jews, but most were not I reckon. Sounds like a pretty diverse group. And he spoke to them all and revealed the magic and the meaning of life the universe and everything.

Stop. Do you want to know the meaning of life, the universe and everything? ‘Cause I could stop right here and tell you about this truth. Unveil the hidden wonders of the galaxies, the sun, the stars. I could paint for you a picture of purpose and meaning in your life that maybe you didn’t even know was there. Well that is what Peter does, he drops some serious truth on this assemblage right here.

Basically he says, the entirety of the Bible has pointed to this one moment in history. It pointed to the coming of a savior. And this savior? You handed this savior over to die a death on a cross as an embarrassed common criminal.  But take a deep breath. It’s ok. Because that was the purpose from the foundation of the universe… that was determined to happen. He came to live, and then die for you, and then rise again. And we have been with him for the last few weeks. We ate with him. We laughed we cried with him. We all here are witnesses to this event. Ask any one of us. We will all tell you the same story. This Jesus that we killed… he’s alive. And he just ascended into heaven on a cloud. Coolest thing I’ve ever seen, and I saw a ton of cool things following Jesus around for 3 years.

Let me be clear though. The Christ, the one we have been waiting eagerly for all these millennia? We killed him. And when Peter said these words, this was the response: “they were pierced to the heart, and said to Peter and the rest of the apostles, “Brethren, what shall we do?” Peter said to them, “Repent, and each of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins; and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. For the promise is for you and your children and for all who are far off, as many as the Lord our God will call to Himself.””

Look at that response from Peter – this promise, salvation, hope, all of it, is for you! Wait, who are you? Persian, Roman, Medes, Italians, Americans, Canadians? Who cares! It’s for you. This hope? It’s for you. It is for you and for all WHO ARE FAR OFF. There is no such thing as too far off. This is for you.

Did you hear that?

We are all so lost in our sin. In our desperate plea for help. We are so so so lost. And yet, this hope? It’s for you and me! It’s for all of us that are far off. He is drawing you to him right now. Calling your name. Are you lost? This message that Peter declared 2 thousand years ago is no less relevant today than it was then. And that is what the entire book of Acts is about. It’s about these disciples, who saw first hand amazing things while Christ walked the planet, and they went around the world telling everyone they could about it. There were shipwrecks, beatings, stonings, blind men gaining sight, healings, imprisonments, and on they pressed… telling everyone they could about this miracle of life and new life they had seen.

Have you seen this miracle of new life in your own life? It’s for you. It’s for me. It’s for all those who are far off.

Related Posts

23 Responses

  1. L

    This site is fantastic for people to read or gather to post their questions and ideas about movies watched. I admire the creativity and kind intelligence noticed while skipping around this site reading well-thought posts. Yet, in reading this particular one wonder if it’s a movie forum for Christians only?!

    I watched the “Silence” movie and read the “Christian” take on it which is of interest but didn’t leave commentary at the time because I am not Christian–or of any religion. Perhaps the closest belief system or “the-story-we-tell-ourselves” I aspire to is a desire to achieve a more humanistic approach in life. Humanism isn’t a religion or a philosophy but it would be so nice if more folks embraced it.

    I’m not a theologian but have read, studied and attended various churches, a synagogue, mosque, Buddhist temple, etc. My beloved mother had her ancestor’s religion she introduced to us kids but she encouraged freedom to attend others and told me, “Churches are like homes–some you feel more comfortable in than others.”

    Then, there were fascinating articles and books read in which research scientists took stories from the Bible and put them to the test. For instance, the most challenging one was taking direction based on scripture account on what the Ark of the Covenant was composed of; a replica was built; a theory posed. The metal and fur-lined inner case became charged with static electricity as Ark bearers trekked across many miles of desert sand. Footwear of those times also Increased static charge. But was it a strong enough charge to kill a person? Go find and read the study for yourself he-hee!

    I wish more church going folks could become aware of texts concerning India’s ancient religion that go back waaay before Jesus’ time in which ascribed gods walked on water, turnedwater into wine, multiplied food from one grain or one fish into a feast…does the story sound familiar?

    The brain is truly remarkable constantly tabulating, judging–amazingly most of what is believed/perceived isn’t real and can’t be counted on.

    But, what the heck do I know, right? Haha! It’s my typed skewed, judgey perceptions your skewed perceptions are reading, judging. It’s a wonder we’ve all come this far.

    • Senta

      I’m not Christian, although my da is. Maman was once an atheist but has grown to be agnostic (thanks in part to my da), which would pretty much describe me too. My sister is borderline Christian. Da does not push either of us however to be Christians. It is a free choice in our house. He loves us either way. It is because of his love and even-handed rationale that I am able to navigate the many pitfalls of modern Christianity which is rife with hypocrisy and condemnation. It would be easy to attack Christianity based on humanity’s propensity to be judgmental of others, especially those foreign to our way of thinking. But logic also tells me that if I were the devil, I would attack the church from within, not from without. This strategy has taken down empires, so why not a church. And if the devil infiltrates the church with hypocrites to turn you and me away, and we fall for it then who is to blame? Us or God? You see the trick here is if we allow other men to turn us away from God because of their hypocrisy then that proves we never wanted to follow God anyway; i.e., we are just looking for an excuse not to. This is part of the original sin as my da calls it, which is to take no responsibility for our choices.

      But if I ever was to choose a religion, I would definitely choose Christianity because it makes the most sense – it has the history of the world in the Bible, the beginning of evil; it tells me that I am loved by my creator, that I am a created being with a purpose as opposed to an amoeba that came from brine, grew into a monkey and then into a man (which I do not believe at all), preaches that love trumps all and that the reason why the world is in the state it is in is because humanity chose to follow the devil instead, thus this world is the devil’s world. On a purely religious experience, that makes sense to me because that is the only thing that can explain the pickle we are in – why babies are born with cancer, why men rape women, why we kill each other, steal from each other, betray each other. We blame God when we should be blaming the Devil.

      Yes, I too have brought up that argument with my da that other religions are older, that the Bible seemingly copies other religions, but he told me something interesting, and you have to look at it from the POV of all religions. Fallible Logic#1: “It is the same god so it does no matter how we worship him.” Really? Even I saw through this as a child. If this fallible logic was true, then that would make this one god a sadist, because all these religions that he created, in all these different cultures, are so dissident that we fight and kill each other over our massively differing belief systems. Good one, God! I would hate him. So it cannot be true, because I would never worship someone like that. So where does the next step in logic take us in the world of religion? If there is only one god, and there is a devil or a type of manifest evil, as there is in almost every religion, then within all of these religions, which one is true? They cannot all be truth, correct? So if there is a manifest evil, then would it not want to obfuscate the one true god by creating hundreds of gods? Would it not create an anti-thesis to every religion in the world so that they would fight each other in the name of their own god? There is only one religious book, the Bible, in the entire world that I can think of that says there is only one god; the one who created this world and man, and that “you shall have no other gods before me.” Not that this god will kill you if you do not worship him but because he gave you free choice. You can choose other gods but you will die eternally if you do for these other gods are the idols of mankind. On that same note, Jesus also said he did not come to bring peace but the sword, not that he literally brought a sword with which to kill us, but rather mankind himself would fight amongst each other over his name. Father would fight son, brother against brother because one would choose to follow the true god and the other would not. In the world of religion, this would seem to have proven itself true. It is these points that have me thinking. Hmm…is Christianity real?

      My da likes to watch me wrestle and think. He prays that I will someday get it, but for now he loves me as I am until he is dead. That will never change. I will always be his child. This is why I respect him so much. He loves me so much he lets me choose without judgement and without making me feel bad. That is real Christianity. A counterfeit would judge me and condemn me, pushing me to accept God under threat of eternal damnation. That kind of arrogance and spitefulness is not Christianity. That is apostate Christianity. Jesus never condemned anyone; he never said you are going to burn in hell for all eternity (which the Bible never says, by the way; apostate Christianity says that). He loved people and everyone who knew him, said so. He never raised a sword, never led an army to kill others and subvert through force. He came in humility, as a common man, not as vain royalty. He was meek and kind. And most of all, he gave us free choice. That is a man that I believe could very well be the Son of God. Take also what he said about false Christians. Jesus said many will speak in his name, they would cast out demons, give money to the poor but Jesus said, get away from me, I know you not for your hearts speak lies and judgement. It is not enough to follow the letter of the law if you have no love in your heart, and that is the beauty of true Christianity. …Wow, I am almost talking myself into being a Christian. 😀

      Seriously, I have a problem with religions. I do not trust them, nor do I like them. They seem only to want to dominate, to judge all others and kill in the name of their own gods. And the ones with less bloody histories? Like Buddhism, and others like them? I do no need fancy words, sayings and ideologies to get me through life. I can get more out of reading Dicken’s A Christmas Carol, than sayings in a Buddhist manual that preaches nothing more than humanistic common sense. As for Humanism, it is just another name for believing nothing at all and depending on the basic goodness of man without the interruptions of gods, which I do not believe in at all. Mankind is screwed, and for the most part there is nothing good in us. We have not gotten better over time; we have gotten worse. Look at the world today, all the hatred, all the craziness, the sexual deviations that are accepted as normal, the loss of central family, the disintegration of the respect for elders, the rampant wars and the escalating secular and religious violence worldwide in the civilian sectors, the death of education, the rewriting of basic biology and psychology…need I go on. We are living in a time like no other and the crazy thing about it, the Bible predicted even this. Forget Nostradamus and his vague visions that hold no water. The Bible predicts things to the day. The day! The year! But people ignore it, because it is the Bible and everyone thinks it is a book of myths, but there is no denying there is something in those pages. It is the best-selling book of all time and wars are fought over it. What does that say?

      So why do I not take the leap and just be a Christian? Because I have a grudge with all religions, and with a possible god who let this whole debacle take place in the first place. And until I work that out, it is a stalemate. So I feel you, completely. Religion is a minefield, and for the most part, I want nothing to do with any of them. 🙁

      Taylor might be a Christian, but I do not feel his site is, because the movies he critiques are often far from Christian ideals. I think he is a man who likes to think and throw out ideas because that is just who he is – he is a geek and proud of it. This I like! I too am a geek, but bookish geek, not a movie geek And perhaps this is why his site has a sense of peace to it: it is honest. I am not a social media person but I do enjoy this site because it has a more intellectual bent to it. It wants you to think, and I do love a good think. 🙂

      My parents never allowed Saoirse and I to have any social media page, let it be Facebook and all its ilk. They said, “Do not be vain; do not waste your life on vacuity. Your grandparents grew up fine without the internet and mobiles; they live in the moment, and so does this family.” So we have no Facebook, no webpage of any kind. We rarely watch telly or movies; we read books and debate them. I have read the Bible a few times already. If you have not read it, read it, at least once. I still debate the idea of religions…but the longer I know my father, and the more I pick up that odd book that purports to be inspired by God, the less it feels like a religion. …This one *whistles*…feels real? Do not ask me why that is…just read it yourself. 🙂

      • Taylor Holmes

        First things first, this isn’t a Christians only post. You commented didn’t you? I happen to be a Christian who is trying to go book by book through the Bible and reading it pragmatically. What is the good and the bad here? Once I FINALLY finish the Bible, I’d be happy to do the same thing with the Quran, or the Vedas, or the Guru Granth Sahib… or what have you, next. Granted, I am completely biased. But as it turns out, these posts have been mainly for me.

        On this site, I am getting close to 2 million visitors per year now. Or more. 2.5 this coming year probably. But 97%, or more? visit my movie stuff. 2% read a movie post and then wander off and read one or two other random things (you are in a category all to your self. You defy the percentages really.) And then there are the 1% that actually want to engage on other things. This post – – probably sums me up more than anything I could post here… and I enjoyed the conversations with the two people that engaged on the topic in the comments (extensively).

        I don’t try to shove what I believe on others, but I look forward to discussing religion and philosophy, or what have you with people that enjoy it. I strive for open and honest dialogue in everything that happens here. Whether it is about movies, or faith, or the lack there of. Again, this has always been my own personal dumping ground of ideas, thoughts and joys. The further you go back the more you will see me just experimenting and looking for things that stick. The long movie reviews and discussions stuck. And has kinda blown this site up. But I don’t plan to stop being what I am or who I am because the visitors took off. If that makes sense.

        I’d prefer to hang out here and engage with the two of you point by point, but work went absolutely crazy today, and I have a ton to do tonight. I tried all day to finish my comments to your comment L, but alas, just never could get back to it. And then when Senta followed your lead I figured I had to say something. So yeah, here’s my something. You guys really are abnormally interested in my weird ramblings. I will say that though! hahahah. I take it as a very very kind compliment. Truly.

        Thanks – and Senta, tell Da, he’s definitely my new best friend now. I would love talking to him at depth about all of it. One of each thing from the all of it pile. hahahhaha. Too funny.


  2. L

    Senta, are you really as young as you say because you express yourself, your feelings about things so exquisitely well for a young person. It reflects well on your loving, wise parents.

    It would not be the worst thing to choose to become a Christian haha! There are many sects to choose from: Catholic, Methodist, Presbyterian, Baptist…to name a few. Other religions also are comprised of different sects, too. All may lead to the same God yet remain separated. Whatever Christian sect you choose, should you choose one dear Senta, will be very blessed to have you and your very fine mind, passionate heart as a member of their Christian church.

    I really love science and feel life is too short and precious to believe in things never seen. The Bible was edited by many kings who added, changed or destroyed chapters; The New Testament of the Bible are writings based on verbal stories handed down 400 years after events. It also is missing, or has had chapters destroyed.

    Many Jews during the time of Jesus were horrifically crucified in multitudes on a daily bases over the slightest perceived offense. I cry as much for Jesus’ death as for the many nameless who die by man’s inhumanity against man. I am respectful of Jesus for many reasons but am a “doubting Thomas” as to the story of his being God.

    If a God exists it’s not the kind of God man’s made up. IMHO whatever is going on is too vastly complicated for our intelligence…and math is most likely the way to communicate with it.

    My dad, husband and mother, in that order, died within a short time span of each other. My little girl died many years ago. Each died of different causes and I watched them suffer greatly, helpless to ease their discomforts before they died. I can honestly vouch none of the prayers given with hope and gratitude were answered during those times when it was all that I could give.
    But I’m not mad about it. It helped to affirm how precious life is, how important it is to value and share kindness toward the living for the short time we’re here–less time than most folks realize.

    You are right about Taylor, Senta, his site is open to many thinkers from all walks of life. I’ve been visiting, reading more posts of his and it’s natural and quite okay for a person’s perceptions to be filtered by their religious beliefs. On initial discovery of this site, I’d come upon a few Christian-oriented posts until discovering a vast amount of posting devoid of it.

    I wonder if I’ve written a longer post than you, Senta hahaha!

  3. L

    Taylor, it is kind of you to post considering the many important tasks you juggle on a daily basis. It’s tires me out haha! hearing about the many irons in the fire you’ve chosen to add or is added by what life is sending your way. That being said, you did an intuitive thing in your hurried answer that will allow me and you a rest by sharing your link to “Mysyeries of the Universe” blog/forum.

    The use of the word “rest” is the best way to describe what I was about to do and now choose not to: start a discussion with you very similar to the link you’ve sent.

    Oh how you’ve saved us the time, energy of gathering together and composing more wordy, lofty “books, quotes and things read” to share, only to find it will lead to a dead end, a loggerhead, a vacuum. Yet despite the erudite, pleasant discussions by the incredible “gurus” the blog attracted (you’re an amazing teacher of Christianity, Tay), the sharing of minds did not blend, unite, convert. Instead, you and the others part ways remaining in firm illusions I like to refer to in life as “the story we tell ourselves.” And I’m not up above it either. I may not know a lot about many things but one thing I do know is the older I get, the more is realized how really dumb and foolish I am about life. I live in my own illusions like everybody else.

    If I were to add anything, it will be dialogue on scientific research, an understanding on a cellular level about why we do the things we do, think and live the way we do. Fantastic discoveries from scientific research has grown exponentially in just the past few years. The media does little reporting and can’t keep up with advances occurring in the many, diverse fields. I desire to make clear: I do not refer to the New Age pseudo-neuroscience out there in the world causing some folks to walk down a road to nowhere.

    I liked your comment about religion and science in that blog and had pondered once. However, it’s more likely science will prove the nonexistance of the God of this world than findings which support.

    I loved that forum and have bookmarked it. I plan to go back to it and look further into links suggested in the forum threads. Jane spoke for me; I admire so many people of India heritage. Yet, I also dislike compartmentalizing by nationality. You asked her to share personal info but wish you’d allow our brain’s need to label, name, sort things to remain open. By asking people to share where they live, are male or female, what they do for a living., interferes with hearing or getting to know who a person really is beneath all that labeling which consciously or subconsciously allows words they say to be heard afterwards through our perception’s biased filter.

    It would be sacrilege for anyone to post to the Reply button in that forum. Can you freeze it as is? If someone comes along and adds to it, hopefully they will post at end of the thread.

    You have no idea how much I appreciate you, this site you’ve created. Thank you.

  4. L

    Reading further in the link you shared, realization seems clear you are firm in your convictions concerning Christian doctrine and do not care about anyone’s religious or non-religious perspectives which differ from yours. You, ‘truly, truly I say unto you’ present for all to see you are perhaps hoping to convert people to Christianity. Really? Most importantly, why?

    You say you will read other religious texts but why do you bother to–you politely gave lip service to Jane and Mica’s dogma in the link shared. Because you don’t question your devoutness to a particular religion, don’t you give pause at all and question your devoutness? Is it all you know? Don’t you question your loving but perhaps biased parent’s influence and encouragement?

    It’s like this…excuse the jump: The currency system, not many folks seem to question it. It didn’t exist until much later in human trajectory but has been around for a long time. It will someday cease most likely due to AI machines. So will religion.

    Unawareness of filtered perceptions, of how our brains work, will most certainly impede any new, different kind of helpful info to better our understanding of life when the deep ridges in the brain (yes, it is real and seen in fMRIs) started most possibly by parent’s belief systems imposed on their offspring at an early, tender age.

    Some churches, like Catholicism depend on pomp and circumstance to lure the young. Many religious systems promote a better life in the hereafter which causes many good people to not give value and sanctity to the very short life they should hold dear and sacred for themselves but most importantly, for others.

    • Taylor Holmes

      Woah woah woah…
      You are being just as ignorant as you are accusing me of being. Because I believe something with great conviction doesn’t mean I won’t listen to you talk about how fantastic something else is.But your analogies are all wrong. Let’s say that I am dogmatically a gold standard guy, and you are all about jumping heading straight to bitcoin. Ok. But I know that Gold ties monies to a specific valuable item. And bitcoin is all about baseless trust. Alright? But I am happy, ecstatic even to listen to you monologue about the virtues of bitcoin and the future of money-less economies. Right? Oh, ok. I get it. You give me pros and you give me cons about bitcoin. I listen to the argument and decide cash bills is the way to go. But not bitcoin. We have had a healthy dialogue. You have convinced me that the economy is severely limited by a gold standard. And so to mitigate that, I move to cash. But don’t buy your 1’s and 0’s argument. Right?

      Where your analogies are the epitome of incorrect is with regard to absolute truth. Doesn’t even work. It’s not even analogous.

      When I was younger I was fairly suicidal and fairly adrift in my search for truth. I researched post-modernist thought and really went overboard with regard to Nietzsche and many like him; Heidegger, Satre, Camus, Wittgenstein, etc. I spent my years in college diving deep into my philosophy classes looking for meaning. And all of the various philosophy branches were all meaningless to me. I also objectively compared the various religions against one another. I took my problem statement – “I am lost. I have no purpose. I am adrift in sin. And in need of saving.” and compared it to what the world’s religions had to offer. And in this exercise I realized a truth – all religions on the planet are about empowering my ability to work my way to Heaven/Nirvana, what have you. All religions but one. Christianity. And I decided there was nothing good in me. There literally was no way, even with a million rebirths (which, as a system is highly highly problematic just from a math system) that I was going claw, and scrape my way to a perfect run, a perfect life, which would then allow me to convert to some godlike being. Wasn’t happening.

      So for you to say that I haven’t done that, I have. For you to say I am unwilling to do that, is untrue. I will hear you out. You tell me that you have found empirical truth to the fraud that is Christianity? I am all ears. You tell me that you have found a box that converts you to a djinn or something? I’m IN! Talk to me. Tell me where my beliefs are wrong. But please do not tell me that I haven’t done this. That I haven’t searched and searched and searched for truth.

      L, we may have only just met, but my site is nothing if not an edifice built to my natural inquisitiveness. I want to know. I want to learn. (Currently crying I mean that so strongly and so intensely.) If I’m wrong, tell me. If I am missing it, share it. But what you don’t like, is that I am saying I have found truth. You hate that this is some sort of monopolistic power grab for understanding and the implicit belief inherent that you are wrong. Or that others are wrong. Right? I get it. But please understand, I am not saying you are wrong.

      What I am saying is that you haven’t had your eyes opened. It has not been illuminated for you. Yes, I am saying that there is only one way. But everyone can know that one way. And because you and I are friends… I consider you a friend anyway, I would love nothing more than for you to know more about this one way.

      For me? The truth is everywhere… and it is continuously confirming for me this truth that I have learned. In science. In the stars. In the majesty of the mountains. In my DNA and in yours. The reason I study the Bible so carefully and so closely is to validate its truth. Sure, I learn other things as well. But it also cross checks against itself.

      And as I look back at your previous comments (which I read out of order) I see a more tempered comment. But whether or not you choose to believe this truth does not mitigate it’s own inherent truth. Yes, it breaks my heart when people bump into me and we pontificate and they go another way. To find a person willing to really grapple with new ideas at an older age is so very rare. But I would say that the world has testified to this truth your entire life. That is why I like interviewing people and talking to them about their own morality and philosophical bents. I want to know if they think of a god, or higher entity. I want to know if they have grappled with these ideas, or the stories they tell themselves about how the world was spun in to being out of nothing.

      You have read more of my site than I have at this point. But know this, and hopefully I’ve said it elsewhere, I value you and I value your opinions. You matter. But the cool thing really is that you matter more to God than you could ever matter to me. I have not created this site with an end goal of proselytizing all my visitors. Anything but. It is really quite rare that it comes up. But if it does, whether in a movie, or in a philosophical leaning post, I will discuss it because it matters more than anything else.

      I believe that God created the world. Man told God to take a flying leap. And this caused a rift, between us and Him since the founding of the world. I believe that Christ, being fully God and fully man… in an act of the most perfect love, came to earth and died in our place in order to mend that relationship between God and man. And the Bible says clearly that the only way to God is through belief in him. Christ. Belief that Christ is God. Not through tithing. Not through papal creeds or church attendance. Not through penance or confession. Simply through belief in Christ.

      This is what I believe. And if you want to tell me about your deism, or Hinduism, I would gladly, and actively listen. I would ask questions like you wouldn’t believe, because I’d like to understand the problems that religion solves for you. Or whatever. The problems that Atheism solves. So please don’t say that I don’t care. Because I do. Very much. To me though? The Bible checks out. And that is what my Biblionomicron experiment is all about. Double, triple and quadruple checking the Bible against itself. Back in the Old Testament, I summed it up as a love letter from God to man. An unending, and repetitive love letter calling the prodigal home. So many people say that the Old Testament (or the Testament, or Torah, if you are Jewish) is a harsh and horrible book. But that couldn’t be further from the truth. God is calling his people home, again and again and again. He communicates to other non-Jewish countries even and gives them a chance to come to Him as well. It’s a fairly mind blowing collection of books.

      But if, while I was deep reading Leviticus or something – I realized that the book was duplicitous or false – if I were to realize that it didn’t logically check out, I would pull at that string until I either understood what I was missing or I’d bail on the entire enterprise completely. You read where I stand in my review of the movie Silence. Right now, from what I know, and the insights I have had, I would die for my faith. I would willingly and without second thought, hand over my life for this Truth. And better yet, I hope that I live out my life each and every day as a willing sacrifice for the truth of which I have learned. It’s one thing to die for a truth, but it’s a totally other thing to live for a truth.

      Please know that many within the Christian Church have it all wrong. And for them, I apologize completely. But they have added to the truth… and twisted the elegance and simplicity of the gospel. But my faith is my own. I have searched the world for big T truth. And have only found it in the Christ. I need a savior. I can’t do it on my own. And He says his burden is easy and his teaching is light. So I say, sign me up. I’m in. I literally cannot save myself, and I know the horror and the chaos within my own soul. I know that I am desperate need of an intervention. Maybe you don’t relate to that. And I understand. But for me, it is everything.

      So, L… please know that those people I have discussed religion and spiritual ideas with are actually still around. The two folks that commented in this thread have been active here for years. Jane comes back regularly, and changes her name, but generally will give a shout out letting me know it’s her. And Mica is still around. His wife commented like this weekend on the post about Michael Phelps. I am still on very good terms with everyone. I’m not going to push. I respect other’s beliefs and want nothing but their best.

      But I do have one question for you. I literally believe in God. I literally believe in Jesus’ coming and dying for my sins. And I literally believe in this larger story that is happening all around us. Right now. I believe this. And if you were me. What would you say to you, that would mean something? You mentioned the Catholic Church and their shenanigans. Yeah. tripe. You mentioned the allure of a better life. I am a Christian because I want a better life here. Not there. Christianity has made this world make sense. It has taken me from a suicidal college student and turned me into a father of three, that is about to adopt 2 more kids out of Haiti. A man that works for a non-profit on the goal of eradicating poverty around the world. That isn’t a small vision. I believe Christianity has given me a much much better life than that selfish, myopic bastard that I was. Oh, I’m still awful. Still haven’t gotten it figured out. But it is so so so much better than it was. So, if you believed you’d found the truth, what would you say to me to convince me that you really had seen the truth?

      But please don’t tell me that I don’t care about you. Because I do. Please don’t tell me that I don’t care about your spirituality, because I do. Very very much.

      • L

        I am an average human being. No more. No less. I don’t know the answers to life and get exhausted listening to folks who think they’ve got it right, that their religion or spirituality is the answer.

        Your life is precious. That’s all I know.

        You should question why you would give your life to a chimera, something you have never physically met, touched, smelled, held a two-way REAL conversation with (instead of in fantasy; in your perceived and rigidly ingrained opinion).

        Also, IMHO when people do good deeds they don’t talk about it. It’s great you are adopting two innocent, exquisite human beings labeled “from Haiti.”

        Value the living not a belief system. Religions teach fear. Religion does not allow you to deny or leave them lest damnation occurs or an afterlife is denied. People may treat you like shite but there are many more who are here who will love you at a distance, or be near and able to hug you, touch you like no pretend man-made god can ever do in your short but sacred life. I would scrap together what money I could afford to meet “Jane” and share convo with her in person if I could. A living Jane is here, now. Pretend gods aren’t.

        Have you ever questioned how it is people suddenly find god when incarcerated or barely recovered from a drug addiction? It’s a blanket is all. It’s too scary for people to come to the realization they are free-falling whether their free will likes it or not. It just is. It’s up to each person to make something of their short, sacred life as they will.

        I will speak in dismay and brutally disagree about your admitted willingness to die for your zealousness concerning Christianity but it doesn’t mean I don’t value you as a human being, Taylor. Seriously, there’s a deep groove in an area of your brain that you’ve allowed and honed in the belief system anomaly. An fMRI might show it, yet that knowledge alone wouldn’t stop your perception to still live and die by your heldfast Christian beliefs.

  5. Taylor

    I didn’t mean to imply I am doing “good deeds” by what I do or the adoption. I was merely pointing out that my life is better. My life matters is all. That it is pointed towards something other than me. Which, would be me sans the fMRI groove.

    Seriously, if you pull a Nietzsche on me, and say, there is nothing but the void, but hug a tree on the way out?? I jump off the nearest building. Seriously. That is what his philosophy amounts to.

    If I am wrong, then why do you care? There is nothing beyond anyway. I live my life trying to make others happier, by living selflessly. I’m delusional. But so what? I have Christian friends and we agree on our collective delusion together. Maybe I’m out tithe. And I’m out Sundays. But otherwise? It really shouldn’t matter that much to you. Conversely? Yeah, it should really matter to me. A lot. Because you are precious it should matter so very much.

    But if God is calling you. I won’t be the last person to talk to you about this in the next week or two. If he is trying to get your attention through this conversation then all manner of interesting coincidences should start happening.

    But again, I’m low key. Just pointing out the discrepancy in you fervor. If anyone should be fervored it’s me! Hahahah.

    But yes, we agree. Life is very precious. You, are very precious. And not because you are wicked smart. And not because you comment on a super cool blog. Just because you are God breathed.

    Why don’t we make a bet about what’s on the other side. Our standard bet, 1 dollar. Hehehe. (Come on, what movie!?!)

    • L

      I went too far. I apologize.

      This is no excuse but I’ve become distrustful of certain professions from what was witnessed and dealt with while caregiving. It’s not a warm and fuzzy world out there when you’re suddenly realizing you can’t do everything by yourself, no matter initial good intentions, and need to reach out to strangers for advice, more care.

      Mom’s condition was particularly challenging because of her dementia. She became my child. With the many types of people met during a most vulnerable time, some of the worst predators were lawyers and clergy–kind of like modern day Pharisees and Sadducees; or, perhaps more like dealing with “clowns to the left, jockers to the right; here I am stuck in the middle”…with my sweet old mum depending on me to be her wise advocate.

      Gleaned from the other forum with Jane and Mica, I read you help poor children around the globe. It was then I became “delusional” wondering if you do this very good thing but for an ulterior motive: to convert poverty-stricken or orphaned children to Christianity. It pissed me off. Maybe it shouldn’t. I’m wrong quite often.

      Again, I’m so sorry. You’re probably the kindest person (definitely thick-skinned!) and I’ve rudely blundered, acted on an unfounded notion.

      • Taylor Holmes

        ‘sall good. I’m not perfect. I know that. You are very sweet, and I dig you all the more for your kindness.

        But you do realize that Jesus, (I have studied this in depth… like, I can school most Christian scholars, and PHDs level of schooling… not hyperbole, I have counted every question in the Bible asked of Jesus, and what his response was. I am midway through counting every question asked of God in the Bible. The point being, I want to understand the questions and the answers in the conversations with God from beginning to end. Seems futile to you, fine, but it helps me make this statement very authoritatively) that he HATED the Pharisees and the Sadducees, and those that led others astray? (Not preaching, I promise, just making your point from a Christian point of view) Think about this – Jesus sat, and talked to a SAMARITAN WOMAN… stop. Jews never spoke to Samaritans. Wasn’t done. They WALKED AROUND their country in order to avoid them. Jesus walks through. Stops. And while the disciples are getting food. He chats up a woman. Ok ok ok… historical context. Not done. Totally unacceptable. Heck in this country 150 years ago, men were STABBED by women, killed, because they had the indecency of saying hello. Literally. So here is Jesus, talking to the woman at the well. DIALOGUING ABOUT POLITICS. Chatting about religion. Really key questions of the day. And then Jesus blows her mind by telling her about her 5 past husbands, and that the guy she’s with now isn’t her husband. Information a man cannot know.

        Then, stop. There in that conversation between this God-man, and with this woman who is obviously hurting. (She was getting water from the well at mid day. Right? Not with the other women.) Obviously an outcast of that town. Jesus reveals to her that He is the coming Messiah. Put that in context. He hadn’t told the disciples this yet. They think maybe? But he hadn’t said it outloud.

        So yes. I agree with you. 100%

        The Jesus that I love, and adore, says that TRUE RELIGION is caring for the widow, the orphan, the impoverished. Jesus’ kingdom is the upside down kingdom. Pride is a failure, and humility and work on behalf of those that society doesn’t care about. Jesus disdained the rulers of the Jewish religion. They had failed the people of Israel. They were leading them down the wrong road. Which, is why Jesus was killed. The pharisees hated his challenge to their authority. Hated his miraculous signs. Hated him and what mattered to him because it was an affront to their will to power.

        I am so sorry about your mother, and the crazy that happened to her, the wrong things… how people took advantage of her. So so wrong.

        Now as to your charge about the organization that I work with and our ulterior motive. We assist several million children in our programs around the globe. But we work in local churches in the native areas that are already there. We assist the local churches in being the centers for assisting the truly poor and downtrodden. So many times I have flown out to a poor country, to get in a taxi to drive out of the poor city to find a poorer suburb. Where I stay in a poor hotel. And in the morning I get in a tap tap, or some other smaller taxi service (no uber) and go to the poorest area of that poorest suburb of that poor country on that poor continent. In order to go meet people, and meet families who’s stories would break your heart. Like physically crush your heart.

        I’m going long already, but I have to tell this story. I was in Manila. Quezon City to be specific. And I was walking with some people in the local project to do a house visit. We go in, we give food, find out how the kids are doing in school, offer vo-tech type training, etc., and we find out how we can help more than we already are. But on this trip the shanti was out of control. It was up above a river that overflows a couple times a year, and wipes these homes out. And there were three layers of homes. First floor was 5 feet maybe. 2nd layer was 3 feet? And the third layer was just an area for laying. And wet clothes were hanging over the walk way, dripping dirty, dirty dirty river water from below that was dank, no, rank. It was rank. So we go to go in, and I was leading this house visit. So all the courtesies all the rituals expected I was to do. But as I got to the house, and saw the 4 foot square place that 7 people lived. And saw the horrible squalor that they lived in? I had to pardon myself and go out and find sun. I begged forgiveness, said I wasn’t feeling well. Had my second cover it. And went out and just cried like a little baby. Makes me cry now just thinking about it. But then the mother came out and told her story. She doesn’t stay there because she wants to. She stays because she has to. Her husband rented a car to do a delivery and to do some work, and he never came home. They found the car riddled with bullets and he was gone. And so she HAS to stay because if they were to move and he returned, he’d never find them again. This is a simple infrastructure problem. And yet it is binding her to this horrible horrible place. Never mind she is attempting to provide for all of these mouths as a single mother. I do my job because of people like this. Granted. I sit in a lovely office building, overlooking the Rockies, with my three monitors and do cutting edge technological work – about as far removed from her and her story as possible. But what I do, I do it for her.

        This is true religion.

        Jesus agrees with you. He also disdains those that take for granted the infirm, the weak, the poor. He once said that for those that take advantage of little ones, it would be better for them if they had had a millstone around their neck, and throne into the deep. (In that day people were mortally afraid of the things that lie beneath in the deep.) So he spoke strongly about the children in the world and those that might prey on the them.

        Yes, I agree with you 100% evil lies deep inside the church. I won’t defend it. I refuse. Double standards. Liars. Cheats. People who haven’t actually read the Bible speak on its behalf. And I would like to apologize to you on behalf of the entirety of all “Christian Churches” that you saw operating selfishly and harmfully. It isn’t ok. But the Christ that I read about in the Bible is so so compelling. He speaks of living a life connected to Him, and pushing back the ever growing tide of hate, evil, and darkness. And that is what I want my life to be about. And I’ve decided that I’m all in on that vision.

        But regardless, I like you L. You are pretty cool. I like the way you think. And the questions and problems you pose. We have to think critically about everything. I refuse to dumbly be led along. Even though you probably think that is what I am doing.

  6. L

    Taylor, were you at a later time able to convince her to move to a more safe place despite her husband still AWOL? Do you know what has since happened to her and her children?

    I respect your actively doing something to help, while perhaps even placing your life in danger. Geesh! You’re doing the work of a saint!

    In her book, Saint Mother Teresa presented candid thoughts, feelings she shares while in the service of her “beloved.” It was surprising to learn she questioned her faith at times and felt moments of overwhelming aloneness; she sometimes felt forsaken.

    Whenever I start to feel overwhelmed about things–like finding out my favorite lipstick shade is discontinued–I think about her life and wonder how she could choose to live in such an existence…and that I’m an asshole in comparison.

    Now that we’ve shared viewpoints on religion, shall we change topic to politics? Not! Hehee

    • Taylor Holmes

      I asked her and my “handlers” (I not really allowed to ever go alone into these neighborhoods) about the simple idea of forwarding addresses or leaving a message or what have you. And they all said there would be no way. So she is most likely still there. I haven’t been back to Manila since that visit. So I really don’t know. But doubt she’s moved.

      As for the discontinued lipstick shades I totally totally get that. Just coming back from Haiti I feel like everything in my house is a discontinued lipstick shade. Just baffling the massive disparities in the world. I am no more clever than they. Probably, because they had to learn to hustle, I am way LESS clever than they are. So why the mismatch?!

      But yes! Let us away to Politics! Hahaha. I am a republican (or was) until Trump. And now I question my allegiances to such a selfish and corrupt viewpoint. And you think I can’t be changed or listen to reason?!?! Hahahah.

      Off to work!

      • L

        Taylor, you’re the teacher in this matter, no need for me to fill in the story of when Jesus, in very few words, let a disciple know “You will always have the poor among you, but you will not always have me!”

        It seems like a straightforward logical statement but it is interpreted a million one different ways by various Christian faiths.

        Your site, primarily offering movie discussion, may seem a universe away from Bible interpretation of Jesus’ parables, yet each person commenting brings their own, unique interpretation. It’s like a microcosm of the belief system you’ve embraced. Should this site expand as you’ve mentioned is your intention, it will morph into its own kind of “religious sects.” People will flock to and hang out in categories which they favor, share opinions; other movie genres will most likely be ignored. Of course, it’s a prerogative and also ingrained in human nature like the cliché “birds of a feather flock together.”

        We spend so much time and effort “finding ourselves” when all that accomplishes is affirming what one thinks they know and helps affirm, validate what is perceived. People are proud to say they are this or that and go on a narrow search for other avenues to add to the egocentric fun of describing themselves (one for their inner world, the other to folks on the outside–but I admire those who are not compartmentalized/separate, are the same inside/outside.

        There’s billions of books to read, from ancient texts, from the many philosophers throughout time all the way to the popular metaphysical crapola on the market today which only enriches the author’s pocketbook. Deepok Chopra has made far more riches making a living as a spiritual guru than had he remained a medical doctor, paying out vast money to insurance so as not to worry about malpractice suits.

        Chritianity asks us to “have faith” it does not promote evidentiary-based truth. Buddhism recommends to “question everything” which seems much more wise and prudent. Buddhism also offers a tenet to “lead a life of balance” which also is sage advice but actually very difficult to do–it’s impossible to stop the brains natural influence to find pattern, determine its value and increase favoratism, an eventual imbalance.

        This circuitous route taken from the above seemingly ramble of thought is my way of not sounding too rudely blunt when I ask you, Do you read, study any science at all? Not IT shit–that’s a splendid intelligence-oriented occupation for now, in these times. Do your beliefs impede the value and importance of science? You may lack very important knowledge due to the all-encompassing loyalty(?), (fixation?), to Jesus.

        I’m curious and eager to know a few examples of scientific subjects you may have found interest. There’s many people–men AND women of science (sorry my dig on patriarchal religions) who are speaking and writing mind-blowing evidenced-based findings which will impact our future and some procedures are available now but under scrutiny lest its benefits become used negatively.

        I assume, in possibly a Benny Hill kind of “assume,” your interpretation of Jesus’ words mentioned above, is that no matter things existing or will exist in the world, they don’t mean anything–are of no meangful value whatsoever! Only He is of importance because if you don’t believe it, you’re not gonna go to heaven, to an amazingly wonderful place He exists, where only devout VIPs can enter. Is this you?

  7. Taylor Holmes

    Maybe this will be of interest: – but I have done quite a bit of posting about science before I dialed in on movies.

    I love science. I love learning about the universe. About the planets. About the sun. What have you. But that should be obvious to you… because I believe that all of the universe was perfectly designed by a loving an beneficent father. I expected you to intuit my position better than you did. hahaha. You are smarter than that.

    You assume that all of science collides and conflicts with the idea of God and it doesn’t. It just doesn’t.

    An example? I have done a lot of study on rewinding the planets back to the time of Christ’s birth to see if the signs in the stars were actually there. Were the Magi on track? They signs should be there right? I don’t hold back from anything scientific. (Or even archeological evidence.) I have zero fear looking at every possible evidentiary opportunity. Zero. Because if God created it, it should add up. And heck, let’s be frank, God says throughout the Bible he created the marvels of the universe in order to point people to Him. So, frick, it better add up.

    Where you and I diverge, is that somethings we don’t know yet. Somethings are hidden and veiled. I mean, seriously, 300 years ago, we have this conversation? Holy cow! Your position is different and so is mine. So I have to leave room for future learning, but I’m not going to bag out on you because of that.

    One area that I am confused on personally? The discussion of the literal seven days of creation and the figurative seven days. Did God jump start light and make it arrive immediately? Or did he allow the light to arrive in time, on the third… “DAY”? I have zero crisis about the difference, but I am curious. If you want to spend an hour and learn how I literally perceive the creative beginnings of the world, you can watch this video: by Rob Bell (a very controversial Christian pastor, that has been taken under the wing of Oprah… different conversation.) who walks through the opening of the Bible and ultimately explains how … wait for it … everything is spiritual.

    But I hear you yelling from at your laptop… BUT DARWIN MAN! BUT EVOLUTION! SERIOUSLY! – in your mind you believe that the science is irrefutable that man evolved from ape, backwards through protozoa. But creationists have made some really fascinating arguments lately, most specifically (and there are others) the idea of irreducible complexity. That I have yet to hear a good argument against, save for, enough tries, and enough attempts… But I really don’t want to devolve into a discussion about evolution. I feel about evolution how I feel about everyone adoring super heroes movies… just because everyone says it doesn’t mean it is, in fact true. hehe.

    You asked about my ability to interact with science. And the short answer is, science, everywhere I look, affirms my belief in God. Not detracts from it. I embrace science and look for hints of the Bible’s greater knowledge of the world around us.

    I swear I said, just a quick link and go… and here I am paragraphs later. Sorry! hahah.

    • L

      I checked out the links you shared and here’s my thoughts:

      Wylie Overstreet’s video has similarity to a particular segment in a program aired on PBS and narrated by Stephen Hawking. I like these kinds of productions which blow people’s minds, give better understanding and perspective about the world and the universe through science-based examples.

      Religion joined with Science due to drastic revisions which periodically occur through Christianity’s timeframe. Perhaps to make up for the treatment of Galileo. Many Christian universities and colleges became in existence some centuries ago. Today’s offer excellent science programs and some host lively debate with atheists.

      Despite some bridges, persecution of scientists, engineers, physicians still exists today to the point the Advanced Science Serving Society’s, “Science and Human Rights Program Washington DC”, was established in 2003. One can check out cases from around the globe at

      In comparison, no organization exists by religions which protects them from scientists, physicians, engineers, etc., nor is one needed. Unfortunately, rumors based on superstitions or antiquated belief systems are easily spread and run rampant. It can take seemingly centuries to dispel myths, ancient beliefs.

      Robert Holmes “Rob” Bell, Jr.’s video is again an example of one Christian’s influence to reconceptionalize. He has common sense, rationally kind motivations which conflict with what the Bible’s God “breathed” as truth in sacred writings/scripture. For instance: Bell is pro gay/gay marriage; Christian God admonishes against.

      Rob Bell is the current revisionist amid the Church’s dissonance and need to change God’s viewpoint once again. He disagrees with a portion of the Bible God’s outmoded, painfully unjust and cruel admonitions which to this day continue to harm people of the LGBT community and their right to be loved and valued as human beings.

      Bell, who says he feels joy in believing in God, faces His warning given in Revelations 22:18 by desiring to change/add from the “truth” sacred script proscribes.

      The New Testament, one may reason, was the first drastic revision measure to add-on stories changing God anew to a tolerant, forgiving, more loving supreme being so as not to lose members.

      The last link sent is a person offering his mind set in his blog site. Science is still figuring things out–Christian’s who are scientist, too. Unfortunately, the blogger interviewed by you, Taylor, doesn’t come across as a physicist and there was no info to check his education status to know if he’s in the trenches of research study or just an internet blogger adding personal opinion based on filtered perception which favors the Bible’s story. Yet, someday that will become drastically revised, too haha!

      Thanks for sharing links in which one in particular allowed more insight as to how Christianity remains resilient.

  8. Senta

    I am going to start my own thread but this is directed at L and Taylor. I do not know how I want to start this. You will have to bear with me. I talked with da and he asked me, what do you want to say? I said I want to talk about what is going on in Europe. He asked me, why, when these two people are having a religious debate. What does Europe have to do with this? I said, it has everything to do with Europe and he knows why. My father said, to continue. So I told him that Americans do not understand what is happening in the world; it is like they are blind and asleep. He laughed and asked me, will it matter if you tell them? My answer was no, because politics is as contentious as religion; indeed, it is the new religion where everyone wants to kill each other over left and right. So my da shrugged and asked, then why do you feel you need to get involved? I took too long to answer and he watched my eyes turn wet. Like any father, he realized there was a lot more going on here. So he played the father card. He pulled me close in a hug, and asked me, what is really going on? …And I said, maybe I am trying to find God.

    There is a reason why I am here. I cannot tell you this reason because it would halt all conversation and I wish to be like everyone else. But there is a definitive reason why I will not be attending uni this Autumn; why my sister is taking time off to be with me; why my entire family is holidaying in America spending this summer together visiting family that I have never met but who want to meet me. There is a reason why PERSONAL SHOPPER brought me here to this site; because the movie struck a chord with me, my friends, and even my family, and I wanted to know what other people thought. There is a reason why I can be almost offended by all the suppositions that Maureen is a ghost, or that she is a psychotic killer who kills her boss and frames Ingo… Did anyone even read what Assayas said about his movie? It is a story of a young woman coming into her own at the apex of tragedy, where a girl has to rediscover herself; it is a tale of a girl coming to terms with grief. It is told in genres, the alienation, the depression, the naive desire to touch the one who has passed on because she cannot accept his death. She hurts so much, has been gutted so mercilessly by loss, that she looks in all the wrong places for relief from the pain. Ultimately it becomes an epiphany, a realization that she must look inside herself for the answers, that recovery begins when we face our sorrow and pain. The fact that she could die at any moment adds gravity to her decision to move on. Life is tenuous. Time is on no one’s side. Do not waste it.

    My parents raised two daughters to think for themselves. My father, lacking a son, taught us the lessons he would have taught him: fight for what you believe, take no prisoners, right makes might, etc. My parents gave us the best education money could buy. My sister is on scholarship with a free ride through uni, just as my parents had done. I did it too…sort of. Until something happened and plans were changed. So I am in America now, getting myself sorted, and helping my family cope.

    I say all of this to give myself a starting point, and no matter how weird it may sound, it has a point. …I am from Europe and I can tell Americans, it is disintegrating no matter what your media tells you here. If you speak out against Islam, your leftist media accuses you of being a bigot. If you say Islam is a religion of war and destruction, created by Mohammed to bring people under his rule, you are a bigot. What Americans forget, and their leftist schools do not teach you, is that centuries ago, Islamic hordes swept across Europe, slaughtering hundreds of thousands in the name of Allah, selling European women into slavery, castrating males; name it, they did it. For centuries they ruled with an iron fist. It was not until Europe rose up and rallied back with the Crusades that drove them out of Europe, all the way to Jerusalem, at a very heavy cost. People forget that. All they say is the Crusaders raped and pillaged the Middle East. They forget that Europe drove out its occupiers who raped and pillaged them for centuries. Islam treated Europe like chattel. What the Crusaders did in the Middle East does not compare to what Islam did to Europe. Now they are passively taking over Europe again under the guise of refugees. They make no bones about it – they mean to take over Europe, and yet the European politicians do nothing to protect their own people. The Muslims openly say that the Europeans do not own Europe! They feel it is not ours to have. If I pass by young men and boys, they tell me they are going to rape me and I will enjoy it because I am a whore. If a Frenchman would ever say that openly in the streets, shouting it and taunting girls before everyone’s eyes, they would be arrested, but not the Muslims. It is madness. They are not a religion of peace. But I would be a bigot for saying this. That is the madness of the world I must grow up in. I live in a world where a man (Jenner) can become Woman of the Year, and people cheer. I could go on but I would be considered a narrow-minded person. My point is, there is something intrinsically evil happening in this world, and it is conditioning the entire world to accept it. If you do not, you are a bigot. It has no respect for boundaries, nations or peoples, or religions. The world is spiraling towards a Gotterdammerung, but it will be the twilight of man, not of gods.

    When my sister and I were very little, da would read to us stories from the Bible the same way my mother would read faerie tales. He would do all the voices, sound effects, and take on faces and expressions. There was one story from the Old Testament that we always loved. It was about Nebuchadnezzar, the king of Babylon. Once the greatest kingdom the world had ever known, my da would describe the city in detail, how wide the walls were; about the hanging gardens that were one of the wonders of the ancient world. We would listen enthralled. He told us the story of Daniel, an Israelite who was taken captive when Jerusalem was destroyed. Through God’s hand, Daniel rose through the ranks and eventually became a sort of prime minister to the king, because he had proven to be a fine, honest, upstanding man whose god was formidable. One night the king had a dream that terrified him, but he could not remember it. So he asked all of his wise men, soothsayers and prophets, to come forward and tell him what the dream meant. Of course, they could not tell him because the king himself could not remember the dream, let alone tell them what it was so that they could interpret it. This angered the king because they should know what his dream was without him having to tell them if they truly had any powers at all. He threatened to kill them all for being charlatans. Word got to Daniel that the king was troubled by a dream that he could not remember and he was threatening to slay all his wise men. So Daniel got up and went to the King and said, by the grace of God, I can tell you your dream. Daniel went on to tell him there was a great statue in this dream. It had a beautiful golden head, silver chest and arms, bronze stomach and hips, iron legs, and feet of clay mixed with iron. A rock smashes into its feet and topples the entire statue, like wheat on a threshing floor, signifying a complete demolishment. The king happily agreed that was his dream and asked for the meaning. Daniel tells Nebuchadnezzar that the king is the golden head, the most precious metal, the most coveted. Babylon would be the greatest empire ever to grace the earth; no empire since would match its majesty and glory, but it would fall to succeeding empires symbolized by the differing metals. We now know through our study of history that Babylon fell to the Medo-Persian empire, signifying the silver, a less valuable metal but still valued. Then Alexander the Great would conquer the Persians, and Greece would rise up in the Bronze Age (bronze being their central metal). It was a lesser metal than silver signifying as great as this empire was, it was no match in glory compared to Medo-Persia. As we know, no empire lasts forever. Greece would fall to Rome in the Iron Age (known for their steel which was far superior in strength than bronze). And as great as Rome was, it was no match for the lasting glory of Greece which left the world so much heritage that we live by even to his day. Rome would crumble and fraction after the death of Christ; its conquered kingdoms splintering into kingdoms and countries, but history teaches us the Holy Roman Empire, a Christian Pagan church would rise and try to hold the kingdoms together to no avail. We know those countries today as Europe, a mixture of iron (the Holy Roman Church) and clay, the countries that surround it. Many times dictators and despots have tried to unite Europe into an empire but all efforts have failed – Charlemagne, Napoleon, Hitler and now the EU, but it will not hold together. Clay and iron cannot mix, it has no strength. Many believe the feet of clay and iron signify the antichrist’s coming empire of complete apostasy, and it is in this time the mountainous rock signifying the return of Christ, smashes the feet made of clay, toppling the pompous glory of mankind’s empires, and ending the world as we know it. Centuries before these empires existed, the Bible foretold their birth and passing, even unto today.

    Europe is teetering; it is crumbling. It cannot be united. The Bible has predicted it, but no one seems to be listening. A one world government will not work. The world will never unite as one. My da says it goes back to the Tower of Babel, when men spoke one language, were one people. They had forgotten about God and erected their own monuments to their own vanity. They wanted to build a tower into the sky where they believed gods lived so that they could be like gods too. So with a snap, God divided them by language so that they could not understand each other and remain united in their vain bid to dominate the world under one rule. But even now, that same evil wants to unite the world as one. It has never stopped trying. What is that evil? …Who is that evil?

    My generation could be the last generation before complete anarchy. The Bible says in the last days, the people of the world will rise up and realize they have been deceived, and they will turn on those who have deceived them with a vengeance, but it will be too late. Jesus will come and probation closes. Do I believe this? I do not know. But…how did the Bible know? My da told me these stories when I was growing up, but they were just faerie tales. Does this weigh on me now? …I cannot even feel or put into words how angry I am over the globalist agenda and what they intend to do to the world to make it their own. They will never stop and we can ignore it at our peril, or we can confront it. Am I witnessing prophesy unfold? Am I in denial? I do not know. I am just a kid. I may sound smart to you, I may have scholarships, but what will it matter. I will be long gone.

    @ L, when I read what you initially wrote to Taylor, it made me really sad. You had always come across as someone really tolerant and level-headed, but you went on the offensive when you did not have to. Even my sister was shocked. Although you two have since made up, thanks to Taylor’s even-handed temperament, it still made me really sad when I followed your exchange. I could not believe it was happening, even here. It is a sadness that keeps growing because it is multiplied exponentially across the world, splitting it down the middle, where even on the internet, differences can flare up in an instant, unprovoked except for what we perceive as an affront to our sensibilities. Why are we like this? Every comment section across Youtube, Yahoo, Fox, CNN is rife with animosity and name calling, where out of nowhere people just flare up. The Bible said in the last days the spirit of the Devil will run rife, it will come out of people’s mouths in their actions and speech, and they will have no self control. As God withdraws his spirit from the world, the hearts of children will grow cold; the good man will remain good and the evil man will remain evil, and every man will reap what he has sown…and then the end. It is watching these prophesies unfold that have me rattled, because I am living it across the pond. I am watching an evil grow so fast and so furiously, and no one is doing a thing. Reading you attack Taylor and Taylor defending himself made me feel helpless. I told my da that. It is why I cried.

    You guys matter to me. I made some friends on the internet, something I have never done because I do not do websites and talk to strangers. Maybe to you guys it is no big thing; it is just the internet, yes. You talk all the time to strangers, but not me. I do not live on the net that way. I am bookish. The net is my encyclopedia. When I am on it, I merely educate myself. I am looking up questions every other minute. My mind is a sponge. I want answers, not friends, so I do not even try. But I did here…because I am looking for something, I guess, but maybe…here is my epiphany. Like Maureen, I am looking in all the wrong places. I am trying to plug a hole with people and intellect that take my mind off the obvious…but maybe I should be looking for God…because people cannot save me. And I already know I cannot save myself.

    I am going to take a break from this site for a short while. And not because you two momentarily flared up in a religious argument, but because I do not know what to make of my life. Of God. And watching you two momentarily get heated for no reason, scared me. This spirit of strife and dissension is everywhere. I almost got involved, to stop it, but my da said to step away, that this was not my debate. If I was Christian I could, and if I was anti-Christian, I could, but I am neither, so I have no business interfering. I am simply a kid who has seen too much evil spread too fast, and I do not know what it means. And I have to sort that out, and get myself sorted in the process.

    But I will be back. I have to do my ARRIVAL comment yet. My da and I watched it together per your suggestion and we loved it, thus what I am writing is becoming a book. But you know this of me already. 😉 And I am making a post like you promised me on the BEFORE SUNSET page, Taylor. 🙂 I am going to hold you to it. My sister has agreed to help, because the movie I have chosen is one we both liked, so that will be fun. And L, I am sorry for what happened to your mother; that is an ugly thing. No one should be taken advantage of like that, and you can be assured if there is a God, then those people will be punished for their heartlessness, their greed and their fakery. Remember what I told you about counterfeit Christians. The world is full of them. They outnumber the true Christians a hundred to one. They give Christ a bad name, because they are nothing like him, but there are Christians who are, like my father, like Taylor. They walk the talk. Because I cannot accept religions, or gods, or God, has nothing to do with counterfeit Christians. It has everything to do with myself. I have a grudge, and if there is a God, then I have a problem with him, and I only have so much time to figure it out. I promise I will.

    And you guys, do me a favor – stay on middle ground while I am gone. You are friends. Do that for me.

    • L

      Senta, to respond it seems necessary to “out” myself, give personal info which is uncomfortable for me to do on the internet. As mentioned during another thread of discussion, my identity was stolen. It’s taken a lot of time and effort to make right the many wrongs this person has done. So, here’s some info that may help you understand who you’re communicating with because if you’re thinking about it, you don’t really know me despite a few posts.

      I’m almost considered a native of a very populated, highly multicultural city. My neighbors, coworkers come from every country on this planet. Add to this a generation of intermarriage and you find many families, like mine, present a very diversified bunch of relatives. It’s to the point we dare not do an off-joke about any race or nationality because there’s someone in the family who may take offense.

      As an “American” I am family to and carry bloodlines of most nationalities in Europe, the proverbial Heinz 57 plus a smidgen Japanese; extended family are Vietnamese, Iranian, South American, Russian, Egyptian, Israeli. I’ve named most but may have forgotten one or two.

      As a family, we live in America and are therefore “American” but I don’t feel the “Americans” you speak of in a stereotype of tone fit most people in this vast nation.

      There are good and bad people and events going on in this world. One can choose to focus on only the bad things but there really is as much good–if not more so. There are “ugly Americans” who do disservice to America but in no way should all other good people be held in contempt.

      You are so very bright, Senta. Your parents value of education shows through the way you communicate. I really think you speak and compose English better than I. My mom was a teacher, beloved and popular with her students. I sometimes “hear” her lovingly correct me in my thoughts when catching grammatical errors after posting. So many times I wish to share something, get advice and feel like a fish out of water knowing she died, is no longer here.

      There are still so many things you need to learn just like I do and I’m far older but not necessarily wiser. It seems you feel you have to choose on matters but taking your time to mull things over. Again, this presents wisdom you possess at a young age. What gives me most happiness about you is your love of books; you continue to read and educate yourself even after “school is out”.

      I’ve not replied to Taylor’s recent comment because I’ve taken the time to check out the links he provided. He and I are from different “worlds” when it comes to religion. Christianity, due to people’s differing interpretations, splinters off into sects. There seems IMHO “many shades of Atheism”. I’m a shade of atheist who believes, almost similar to Taylor, that science will someday figure out the “Mystery” but I don’t feel it’s the god of this world Taylor and other religions give their faith and devotion. This does not mean I dislike Taylor at all. I really, really think he’s cool.

      I read from a reliable source recently something that may be of value for you to know in regards to the mess in the world and particularly your concern Americans do not know what is happening in Europe. The discussion boards caused the site to go down, crash. It shows how many Americans are deeply concerned.

      Currently, and since its inception, the U.S. government is almost completely comprised of Christians. Vice President Pence is an Evangelical whom many feel helped Trump win the election. Not all are devout church goers, some may be secretly atheist, but elections are won often based by a candidates belief in god, among other criteria which a voter places value. The majority of Millennials who voted in the past election eschewed the slick politician of both party systems and do not share the same so-called moral concepts of the far right. America has huge problems with what an antiquated electoral vote helped to elect as our president. Church and State get fuzzier and less separate these days; it seems like the Church runs the country these days.

      I am now registered “Non-Party” although in early years was Republican, then Democrat. I’ve always voted for the best person for the job, not for party platforms. Because of the way election process is set up, I was unable to vote in the primary election for Bernie Sanders or for Dr. Jill Stein after Sanders lost to Clinton.

      I don’t want to diminish from what you shared in your many valid and heartfelt concerns but to widen your perception you are not alone. At your age, I experienced the Hippie generation. Too young to be active–heck, I dressed as a hippie one Halloween! Haha–but young enough to observe and worry greatly that the world seemed at peril. Really young people forced by draft to go fight in a war fought in boundaries, military movements announced on the news seemingly letting “the enemy” know. My step-brother came back so messed up from that war he could never assimilate in society, just kept re-enlisting. He’s now a retired Command Sargent Major playing golf on some green expanse these days, trying to heal from what he’s been through.

      As he was just embarking from the plane, wearing his military uniform and about to finally set foot on “home” ground, an unruly throng of hippies surrounded him shouting obscenities, spitting on him. He had no choice, he was drafted, could’ve died! War is insanely stupid. This war was like no other; the country was in chaos.

      Most importantly, during those times, the black movement began. Martin Luther King’s assassination, a horrible tragedy. To this day, there are ignorant people who refuse to understand and accept that blacks are equal and deserve the respect and dignity like every other human being. Racism has to stop.

      I found this site “Stupid Things White People Say” and found it very enlightening. There were things mentioned I had no idea I’d said. Also, became aware of the many things in childhood which can unknowingly form racist perceptions in a child. I’ll give a tiny example, which is laughable to some people, but has validity: cartoons of my childhood had no people of color all “people toons” were white. The Jetson’s cartoon was my fave and is one example. How many decades of white dolls? Anyway, I respect that site and take no umbrage to it–was able learn become gratefully aware of “hidden” bias in everyday events.

      Christians–and all religions–do something similar as parents to their children. They begin indoctrination of their children to their religious belief system at a tender age when a kid’s intelligence has not gained enough wisdom to use debate and logic. The parent’s intentions may seem good, the child loves and emulates their parent, wishing to please; however, it causes perpetuation of a narrow, one-sided view of life.

      It’s far wiser if children were taught the history, creed, god(s) of all religions of the world. By an adult age–or however long a person needs–one can choose what they want to believe. Religions don’t like that idea as they need members in order to keep existing.

      Despite what Jesus tried to stop, religions/places of worship are a business–a huge business very much playing a hand in worldly matters and not really willing to let people think for themselves lest they lose membership, and the funds, to stay in the “soul saving” business.

      Then, there’s Taylor! Haha! Yay! I like him and hope to stay friendly.

      I like you, too, Senta. I’m very sorry for disappointing you. I make mistakes, do things I regret–I’m not always right All I can do is be myself and try to change those things I eventually become aware of or am made aware hopefully in a kind way:-) My very last thought or intention in sharing posts was to hurt you.

      Please come back to this site as you share certain simpatico with the very awesome, Taylor. I should be the one to leave, not you!

      • L

        My cousin Babak came to visit as I was typing the above post and he let me read it to him. He reminded me how many Americans have families in Europe and other countries who are in constant cantact. He and his sister left Iran years ago seeking work, a different life; she’s a practicing physician in Italy, whereas “Bobby” an engineer chose the U.S.

        Many families here deeply care and are in constant communication with our/their extended families living in Europe/other countries.

        As a “side job” he assists a local animal foundation to trap/spade/neuter/release back of feral cats in this big city.

        There’s more people doing good things in the world; unfortunately, the media mainly focuses on the bad things people do.

      • Taylor Holmes

        Ok, working my way backwards I know Senta generally made a comment about Europe, saw it in my email preview, but only a sentence or two. Just want to join in on the love fest. Senta, L, it’s all good. Take a deep breath! Hahaha. I would much rather strong words fly, that are honest, than polite lies. Here, call a spade a spade. Ok?

        I dig you both. I love the conversation. And it is really really hard to understand where I am coming from. Especially about religion. Especially when I saw that Christianity isn’t a religion, rather it’s a relationship. Eh? So yeah. Kick me in the shins. Tell me when I bring piles of baggage and dump it on top of the conversation. I get it.

        But just be honest that something I said pissed you off. I’d like to understand you better than I do. Really. Even though you are wrong. Hahahah. Laugh. Joke. Alright, like memento, I’m heading backwards to Senta’s comment… I think anyway. Man you guys can pound out their words with the best of them.

    • Taylor Holmes

      Senta and L,
      I can now definitively say, all stories told backwards are infinitely better than told forward. What a great read! And now I am wondering what the heck happened to L’s mother, I have to keep reading!!! Hahaha. But first, let me say, Senta, I do want you to know, as your awesome father has told you before God really is walking ahead of you, and opening doors for you. He loves you more than you will ever know. This is Truth with a capital T. Real truth. Truth that underpins the creation of the cosmos. And He loves you too L.

      Did you guys read the Count of Monte Cristo? Adored that book. Edmond Dantes says to Abbe Farid I believe it was, “I don’t believe in God.” And Farid responds with, “It doesn’t matter. He believes in you.” And this is the crux of it. He really does believe in you both. Equally. So much so he died for you. Regicide. Deicide. Suicide. For you. And actually, did you guys see The Passion of Christ? The Mel Gibson movie? Gorgeous film. Did you know that Mel Gibson was the one holding the spike to be driven into Christ’s wrist? Mel is such an idiot. But so am I! I am the one that put him up there. Me! Well you too can have some credit, but that is none of my business. I sinned enough on my own to put him there. (Caviziel, Christ, also played Edmond Dantes! So great!!)

      If you go search out my early comments on this site and compare them, I have come a long way. I wasn’t so “even handed” as Senta has said I was with you L. So that was just a fluke that I was kind! Hahah. But I learned something. Many times how you respond is way way more important than what you respond with. L, you were gracious in return. Even though I am responding to you from a place and a mindset that carries great baggage for you. In your eyes, you see Christianity and you see, Holy Rollers and snake oil salesmen maybe. You see Swindlers and cheats. And as I said, many “Christians” are cheats. Many are liars. But that doesn’t mean it is what God intended.

      Senta? You want to talk about saying the unsayable? I’m about to throw down. We have left the age of the Jews. And we are in the age of the Gentiles. The Jews have been sans temple for nigh on 2,000 years. The basis of the Jewish system is the sacrifice, and they are not allowed to sacrifice anywhere but in the temple. Which Herod destroyed. What does it mean? It means that the Jews have neglected their Christ. It means that God is up to something new and different. What?!?

      In Luke 21:24, Jesus speaks of future events, including the destruction of Jerusalem and His return. He says that “Jerusalem will be trampled underfoot by the Gentiles, until the times of the Gentiles are fulfilled”. A similar phrase is found in Romans 11:25, which says, “A partial hardening has come upon Israel, until the fullness of the Gentiles has come in”… and it was prophesied it would happen back in the Ezekiel passage Senta discusses. (Daniel 2:31-45) the visions. I love studying the prophesies and the explicitness of their coming to fruition. It’s pretty freaky really.

      but why? Why? Why the age of gentiles!?!?

      It was so that the good news of Christ, the good news of salvation could be brought to the entire world. The truth can be told to everyone. That’s why.

      Now, to Senta’s comment about political correctness and the chaos of the world. Yes, you are right. In the last times wisdom will be traded in for folly. We will exchange natural for the unnatural. But L, from your seat, I am the one that is deluded. I get it. You got so upset when you found out – or assumed – I was done searching. Or that I had settled on a view. It seems like you liked me better when I was the epitome of the scientific method, or of an even handed, undecide even. But now that I am sure that I have found what I was looking for, you see upset because I had been duped. i think anyway.

      Much of modern church makes me gag. That link I sent you about Everything is Spiritual is the antithesis of church and yet, it is the cornerstone and the pinnacle of how is see my own faith. In the center of all of my life. My job, my view on art, science, math, the cosmos, everything. Holistically, completely. Even my view on zombie movies. Hahaha. Seriously though. But so many modern Christians don’t get that at all. But I digress.

      Yes, Senta, in the world’s desire for “openness”, “fairness”, scientific method, they have begun to shutdown honest and open debate. In most places, I am welcome to discuss UFO’s inseminating this planet. I am welcome to discuss string theory and the infinite universes it would take to make evelution happen. But if I step up to the lectern and say that God loves them? I’d be hoisted on my own petard. I’d be boo’d out. Why? Why is that?

      I’ll speak truth to that lie. It’s because the question, the real actual question at the heart of all of it? Will you bow your knee to a sovereign God is too much. It is the one difficult thing that they cannot do. And so mankind has endeavored to kill God. Nietzsche, “God is dead and we have killed him.” Why has philosophy work so hard to kill this idea of the God shaped hole that Pascal so eloquently elucidated for us:

      “What else does this craving, and this helplessness, proclaim but that there was once in man a true happiness, of which all that now remains is the empty print and trace?

      “This he tries in vain to fill with everything around him, seeking in things that are not there the help he cannot find in those that are, though none can help, since this infinite abyss can be filled only with an infinite and immutable object; in other words by God himself”

      Which better responds to your thinking and wrestling Senta than anything I could ever say myself. You are innately aware of this God shaped hole. Thus the struggle. And everyone has this awareness, but so many numb it in an attempt to avoid the question. Which is, will I bow my knee? Will I say, no, I am not actually the captain of my domain… not the master of my ship. In fact, it’s rudderless, and in desperate need of saving! But because we are moderns, we can’t admit this! This is paramount to failure! Which, is more of this upside down foolishness.

      I care for you both, thus my response. L. It’s ok if you don’t buy what I’m selling. I do not take it personally because I am not the one selling it. I am just the lucky one that gets to tell you a bit about it. Senta, it sounds like God is chasing you down. In a good way. Here’s a post I made about that years ago: out of which I decided to go get a tattoo and change my life forever. He has your best at heart. We were born broken, and he would like to restore you to your original prevalent state. Give you the purpose and meaning you know deep down inside that has to be there or else none of this makes sense at all.

      Yeah, it was tricky talking to both of you simultaneously. Please don’t be offended L. I meant no ill will. Promise. Senta, can’t wait to see your movie review. (You guys do realize on a normal site the post is usually 600 words, you don’t have to make it long like I do!! Hahaha. There is nothing normal about this site at all.

      Take care you two. And I am off to sleep. I’ll get to your comment about your mother tomorrow, promise.

  9. L

    Hi, Taylor. I registered at your new site a few days ago. It works wonky on mobile phone OS but after three attempts, accepted reg process.

    The box was invisible, difficult to find and type in word/letter scramble to ensure I’m not a bot. I tapped right and left of Reset and got lucky; the box then appeared on left. The Reset is easy to see because it’s shaded.

    I like the cool graphic…looks science-y…guess I was expecting a biblical sky with the sun rays bursting through fat, heavenly looking cumulus clouds haha! I posted a “Hello”. At the time, only you and djinn showed up as “activity”.

    Congratulations on your newest site!

    • Taylor Holmes

      Yeah. Totally agree. Sign up was high maintenancely annoying. I have a wordpress plugin that I think allows the WordPress sign ups over on the bb automatically I think? Might make it easier? Still have to figure out how to connect the two. But your points are valid.


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