Friday, July 27, 2007
Thursday, July 26, 2007
Note: Someone brought a misspelling to my attention. I had originally mentioned "Gibbons Moon" when it should have been "Gibbous Moon." The source or sources I was using must have been incorrect. Apparently, I am not the only one having made that mistake. A thorough search on this matter has found my anonymous commenter correct. The word "gibbous" comes from Middle English meaning "bulging" from Late Latin, gibbosus, "humpbacked", from Latin gibbus, "hump." This post has been edited and the spelling corrected. Below are the phases of the moon in their entirety:
New Moon, Waxing Quarter or Crescent Moon, Waxing Half Moon, Waxing Gibbous Moon, Full Moon, Waning Gibbous Moon, Waning Half Moon, Waning Quarter or Crescent Moon, New Moon.
Hopefully this clears up any confusion! - Volker
Monday, July 23, 2007
We all know France as the country of Charlesmagne, King Louis XIV and Napoleon plus fine champagne, great philosophers, painters and the like. France also produced the Age of Enlightenment where Descartes wrote: "I think, therefore I am." So what is this idea of getting to work rather than spending too much time on thought? Wouldn't thinking things through logically be preferable to doing things blindly because someone told you to do it said so? The Government of Nicolas Sarkozy would seem to think otherwise. But what would one think otherwise of a rightist government?
The new President is said to have told a television interviewer last month: "Oh, I am not an intellectual! I am someone concrete!" Sounds more like someone set in their ways than one that is open to new ideas and ways of doing things, in my opinion anyway.
Here is a quote from this story: "This is the sort of thing you can hear in cafe conversations from morons who drink too much," said Bernard-Henri Levy, a philosopher-journalist. "I'm pro-American and pro-market, so I could have voted for Nicolas Sarkozy, but this anti-intellectual tendency is one of the reasons that I did not."
To read the full article in the Sydney Morning Herald, please go to: http://www.smh.com.au/news/world/dont-put-descartes-before-the-bourse-french-told/2007/07/23/1185042950482.html
Here are a couple of quotes from the article. "Protestant churches have reacted with dismay to a new declaration approved by the Pope insisting they were mere 'ecclesial communities' and their ministers in effect phonies with no right to give communion."
Further: "The view that Protestants cannot have churches was first set out by Pope Benedict seven years ago when, as Cardinal Ratzinger, he headed the Vatican ministry for doctrine. A commentary attached to the latest text acknowledged that his 2000 document, Dominus Iesus, had caused no little distress."
But it added: "It is nevertheless difficult to see how the title of 'church' could possibly be attributed to [Protestant communities], given that they do not accept the theological notion of the Church in the Catholic sense and that they lack elements considered essential to the Catholic Church."
The above photo is from the article in the Sydney Morning Herald. To read the full article, go to the following link: http://www.smh.com.au/articles/2007/07/11/1183833598314.html
As one that has been exposed to various religious denominations throughout my life, these statements appear to be a departure from that of Pope John Paul II and are more divisive of various churches, and focusing on their differences, rather than inclusive of what all have in common. There is enough trouble in the world without fanning the flames of discontent. We all live together on this globe we call Earth and we should learn to live with one another in peace and harmony rather than focusing on our differences. There is enough hatred, discord and war in the world as it is, so it's not advisable to add to it, in my opinion. I don't see what church doctrine and hierarchy has to do with the message of peace and loving others as you would have them love you, or as the Biblical passage goes, "do onto others as you would have them do onto you!" In today's "me" generation this message is falling by the wayside. Further, it would seem proper to get one's own house in order before finding fault with others, atleast that is my thought on the matter. I welcome your comments.