Saturday, October 27, 2007

To My Southern Friends

I've become a frequent reader and commenter on Shaun Groves blog - but you know there is a point to where I've come to realize there is a really good reason I don't live on the lower half of this fine continent.

One: Holidays are almost all inherently pagan - you keep forgetting that Christianity is a relatively new religion all things considered - not Judaism - yes that's been around, but they've got their own holidays you should educate yourselves on - Purim, Rosh Hashanah, Passover, Yon Kippur and lets not forget Chanukkah - yes there is a C - since it's a guttural H... Halloween and Christmas were pagan - and you know what are pretty much the worst kind of pagan now - Hallmark style pagan... But that I realize is an insult to those who actually celebrate the original meaning/purpose of the holiday - granted it has been several years since I did my research into Halloween's origins - but the basic premise like a large number of world religions is a reconnection with the dead, a feeding of the spirits and as a whole a time polar opposite to this Christian idea of ritual sacrifice etc.

As a side note - ritual sacrifice is the prime sin Christians have tacked onto groups they don't like - Jews for example - yes, Christians even developed laws in England, and the rest of Europe based on this belief - Chaucer wrote The Prioress' Tale and the Bellis Trial in Poland in recent times was also based on this.... tacky really tacky.

Two: Educate yourselves beyond the here and now - the world you see via CNN, pacifism works for the rest of the world - guns are not a life necessity. I cannot understand how giving a 4 year old a real gun and teaching her to shoot a rabbit is anywhere a step towards self-actualization. Maybe when your forefathers crossed the plains that was okay but there is a Super-Walmart in every American city - there is no reason for that kind of insanity.

3. Immigration - your country was founded on it - everyone other than the First Nations were immigrants - sorry but you were and by all respects illegal ones at that... So here's the deal - terrorists are smart enough to get into your country legally - the illegal ones are those who are looking to better their lives - adopt the hallowed American way... stop using them as glorified slaves - I know why your politicians are getting antsy - they see it - they see what they're doing and they know the next step - those immigrants will realize they're doing the bread and butter work you won't do and start wanting some rights - and there goes the country...

4. War should not be big business and your government should not be the morality police - note I did not say they shouldn't be the justice police - but here's the deal - sure I'm pro-life - but abortions have happened likely since the dawn of time and are safer when legalized - so I'm not stepping on that one - don't agree with it but that's not the point. Same sex marriage and all that - you know what - I don't care - my boss getting married did not bring on the apocalypse and if anything shouldn't you want the end times? Or would it get in the way of your current lifestyle? So I'm fine with it - considering I'm not sure I want to join up with the archaic institution, someone else is eager for it then go ahead.

5. Education - teach Evolution - for goodness sake and you can teach your early earth or whatever you believe at home - you still do parent right? I'm an old earth evolutionary creationist... who is more concerned that at the reading levels - and this whole banning books nonsense, and lack of American and World history that is taught. We do not live in igloos - haven't and never will - Canada is like Portland - scary I know - clean, with transit, Tim Hortons/Starbucks, over educated individuals - courtesy of our publicly supported universities and overall skinnier - yes we still believe McDonald's is a once a year treat not a food group and yes Universal Health care!

6. Jesus is not American - he does not believe in the American way of life or capitalism despite what James Dobson says - sorry to burst that bubble - so this whole WWJD stuff is so off in right field it's lunacy. Jesus hung out with the people relegated to the back row of your church or more accurately those who have never darkened the door - the raw vegan with dreads who sells me my lunch, the bipolar lady on crack who broke into my parents house, the swearing drunk hockey parents we used to have lunch with on Sundays - those are his peeps - what would Jesus do? That's a tough one - but being locked in a dark house on Halloween likely wouldn't be at the top of the list.

7. You fought for the separation of Church and State at one point in time - why don't you fight for it now? The gay rights thing being a perfect example - deal with it on your level - Church don't deal with it on State. And secondly might I remind you the word Church in this case is all religious institutions - I hear you crying foul when Muslims, Sikhs or Hindus work to alter the course of your country... again with the hypocrisy.

8. We've got better candy in Canada - plain and simple - Cadbury and all the wonderful stuff that comes from the country y'all decided you don't much like.

That about sums it up - one more thing - the Linkin Park in the previous post sums up my attitude on comments that I'm sure will continue to come my way....


cheryl said...

seriously about the chocolate. the chocolate in the states is like crap. it's waxy, and without the classic flavor, yet still bears the words nestle and cadbury and what have you. and they don't have SMARTIES! they have "smarties" but they're actually what we call "rockets." they don't have glossettes either.

Jenn said...

No glossettes !!! That's sacrilege.

Shawn said...

Let me first say I enjoy your blog.

Let me second say, I think your opinion is at a minimum offensive and at the most down write wrong according to the Bible. The funny thing about everything you wrote about America(which by the way I am an american by birth) could be said about you as your judging is as Biblically wrong as the governments poor decisions.

I believe in the Kingdom of God. That is not set up by any border, therefore the Church here (which by the way I am a homechurcher and prolly agree with you way more than you are thinking at this point) is as important as the Church there.

I would encourage you before blasting everyone in a one half accurate judgemental statement about a place you you do not intimately involve yourself in, to think of your brothers and sister in Christ(like myself) who may be hurt by your judgement.

Shawn said...

Oh and by the way, I personally do not agree with almost everything Dr James Dobson says. I believe in our duty to be good stewarts of what God has given us, so I understand why you are a veggan. I believe in social justice and the fact that Republicans(you know the ones who claim to be christian) ignore social issues. I hope the country is never like it was, you know a "christian nation" and all, I mean I totally do not think that slavery is okay and our masonic founding fathers did. I also have a hard time figuring out how in the world this war is justifiable and sturggle on a daily basis finding an answer and this is coming from a veteran of the US Army.

Jenn said...

Okay so apparently I have offended... 1. There is always a level of sarcasm in about 95% of the blogs posted here.

2. Liberal Canadian - who subscribes to feminism views of Christ - and non-patriarchal views/structures as defined by the church (note not Church as in Bride of Christ)

3. Judging eh? K - this is the part about Christianity that drives me crazy - you don't like it and feel it's directed at you then we tag it as judging - when it's a brother or sister in Christ it's being held accountable... This my brother is accountability...

4. Governments - note the blog before this one - regardless of which side of the border you're on - they aren't great.

5. Church - yep, k so I agree with you - not defined by a border - but here's the issue... lower c church is the one that gets the press coverage - and that press coverage comes from the southern side of the continent. As to the issue with Americanization of Christianity.

Jenn said...

6. If you're hurt, I'm glad you're saying something about it, can't say I'm going to do a whole lot to change.

7. I suffer from foot in mouth disease - that being said I stand behind what was said - from the comments I've had via MSN - it seems that this is a case of the bully syndrome - the one who picks on the others (USA) is over sensitive when it comes back their way...

8. If you found this blog offensive - skip the one linked to this one - that one you most definitely won't like - and it's one I will not apologize for.

9. This in the end was all about the candy you know right?

Shawn said...

I will respond like this,
#2 is truely a mute point when you look at the fact that in the Kingdom there is neither Jew nor Greek, nor slave nor free, nor male nor female. Oh you mean you are my equal, that's according to the Bible which is what I assume you take your view point from, unfortunantly people like to be told what to believe in a church, not read it for themselves. So I am with you on this one, you are my equal.
#3 Judging is when you don't know someone or you make a blanket statement, accountability is when you do know someone so well that you don't want them to continue with a destructive sin.
#4 Totally agree, there is no such thing as a perfect government.
and most importantly-
#1 Sarcasm is always welcome as long as you can play tennis. Sarcasm, as much as it is my dismay, is very hard to read in printed word.

Jenn said...

Btw - which one offended you? Because

1. Is an across the board issue - regardless of country

2. Like your guns - I could see that.

3. Immigration - I'm an immigrant, so I'm not offended - I know that years before my parents arrival here other folks stripped the land from my roommates ancestors - we talk about it pretty regularly.

4. I could see that one - then again as I've noted somewhere along the way - I'm more a proponent of GLBT rights than I am for the rights of the moral majority

5. Sheesh - well where to start - McDonald's - Supersize Me - seen it? Enough said... Evolution and education - well that's the way my parents did it - let the schools do what they want and then teach me the other stuff at home - I turned out okay in my books

6. I'm thinking this is where the offending happened as noted before don't read that other blog - this would be the place where the 5% no sarcasm thing comes into effect - read Irresistible Revolution if necessary.

7. At the end of the day - us Canadians are so unbelievably passive that not much goes on up here - we drink our Starbucks, eat our organic food, watch Michael Moore and try to figure out how to make our governments more right when it comes to laws and more left on everything else

Shawn said...

#6 I will say something about it, opinions are like buttholes we all have one some stink more than others.
#7 I too have a foot shaped mouth, doesn't mean that it is "okay when I am not edifying"
#8 I am far from a bully, I was a medic in the Army so I didn't have to kill people, kind of counter intuitive to the medical field, so being offended is not because I was caught with my hand in the cookie jar.
#9 I totally diagree with you that your candy is better, Lindt chocolate is made in the U.S., and come on, you come across as very smart, why try saying any food product in Canada is better, save french fries and gravy(I am not even going to try and spell/pronounce that word for this in french that starts with a P). And sarcasm is always long as I am not offended!

Shawn said...

#2 I do not own a gun, I don't see a reason to.
#3 My grand father is full blooded native american of the seminole nation, he married an irish immigrant, I am a total mut, I do not claim to be anything other than an american mutt. I also grew up the only white family in my neighborhood in southern california. I don't see Canada opening their borders up to whoever wants to be a Canadian.
#4 A gay person does not need rights I do not have. I am all for equality, I have gay friends, but like anything else that is really hard to explain, choosing to continue in that life is something I do not think is right, and if you would like to know more about that view and the life I have come out of feel free to msn messenger me at shawnbashor@hotmail.
#5 Do you believe everything you see?
#6 I just started reading Revolution by George Barna, I believe it's pretty much the same thing.
#7 I have actually liked most Canadians I have met.

Jenn said...

Okay so I guess my anatomy reading is going to have to wait - I promised my roommate that I would be as courtesy as possible, lady like since my knee jerk reaction would be to escalate this...

3. Immigration - Canada has a nasty past - the Kamir Rouge, head tax, closed doors post WW2 to Jews etc... reparation has been made and dialogue continues - as to the issue of Aboriginal rights - this is a complex issue that Leaha and I would love to share with you - but I think there's a big distance between us in more ways than one. My concern being that xenophobia has targeted the Hispanic population as being illegal while ignoring the systematic oppression and slave like conditions of workers - which is why I actively do not purchase American produce - when at all possible.

5. Do I believe everything I read? Nope - you should see the bookshelves I have - a degree and a half worth. As to the evolution thing - I've read books on both sides of the coin, done my fair share of biology, chemistry and microbiology courses too. Reading is a first and foremost fight for me and the banning of books and limiting the reading opportunities of children is horrible - parents need to be able guide children to make the appropriate choices - an institution should not be parenting.

6. Stinky opinion, eh? Well I don't support Dobson - that's simple - don't think I really need to clarify or defend that. As to the whole commercialism and capitalism - the blog that is linked explains this. I believe the church hides from the brokenness of the world and itself by filling the cracks with cash and glitz - do I think we need to be impoverished? No but I do think we need to be making daily personal/individual acts to ensure the gap does not widen, by ensuring I don't move up the ladder and the person below me gets a hand up to the next level. The beginning church had the same problem, same goes for the situation in James - this whole haves and have nots dividing the church - we in N.America - are the haves tarnishing the name of Christ with all the sh*t we believe is necessary to be good Christians - when the books, cds, t-shirts, conferences etc are actually the reason we continually feel so far from Christ

Jenn said...

7. Foot in mouth happens*(points to blog disclaimer) - I don't edit here - as you will find with range of blogs from the most recent, to my reaction to Jordan's rejection to all sorts of topics in between, and the language at times is uncensored. As a whole I'm aware I'm a messy spirituality person (Yacconeli) and it's ugly. If you want what the put together - neat, and edited version of myself looks like check out UCM's blog.

8. Bully mentality - is not a direct reference to you - it is however a reference to the US - I am aware that you feel that includes you - I'm sorry it doesn't but I guess we disagree about that one - the US is a bully - has been and will continue to be and the knee jerk reaction of a bully is to be oversensitive because they aren't used to being questioned/called out for their actions.

9. It's poutine - gravy, fries and cheese curds. As to the chocolate thing I'm going to have to rely on my memory as I don't eat the stuff anymore except for Green's and Blacks Organic/Fair Trade - made in Italy - shipped from England - their dark chocolate is made for vegetarians/vegans. It's a good thing - another food holiday I get to avoid and in the process avoid the overconsumption.

Jenn said...

One more thing - the number 4...

I work for a gay man - does he have a moral compass - nope, but neither do a lot of people I know. He's read the Bible front to back more times than he can count and knows more about all world religions than I do - can't say I know a lot - know a fair amount though. At the end of the day he's gay and I have to agree with Tony Campolo - maybe it's biological- a product of our broken world, a home life or whatever else - it's complex and it is not going to change because I want it too or I make him. The marriage thing - we are a sin filled world and to be honest we're secular - I prefer to go the route of loving and the one on one route - no cheap grace, than the laws route.

I would recommend Shane Claiborne's book - Irresistible Revolution - he's got some clips of his speaking on You Tube or you can read my review on UCM's blog - bottom line the neo-monastic movement within Christianity is where I aligning myself - original in many ways to my Mennonite upbringing.

Shawn said...

A few things, I don't like Dobson either, thought that was clarified. I knew one other mennonite girl...who lives in Canada but is from Argentina I believe. If you say shit, damn, crap, ass, or the occasional F bomb, which I only hold for special occasions I will not be offended in the least, as a matter of fact I said butthole instead of asshole because I didn't want to offend you. You seem a lot more sensitive about things then you would like to lead on(just an observation which I may be totally wrong on so forgive me in advanced). I have my issues with the way hispanic peoples are treated, not sure if you actually read anything i write or just react to key words, but I was raised with strawberry picking mexicans, so I think I have a little closer perspective of their abuse then anyone could ever get from a book. I also don't claim to be perfect, but if you dislike me because I am an american, than so be it, evidently we have eternity to work it out. Oh and by the way I am three hours ahead of you and I quit smoking 5 months ago and am back on a regular healthy track. Thank you for the advice though.

Jenn said...

Alright then - I don't have a problem with Americans - on a one to one basis - so no I don't have a problem with you - I do have my issues with the country as a whole, but I've got issues with Canada too - I've got issues with all sorts of things - more or less I've got issues too and I'm okay with that - big things I've got issue with is globalization (aka postmodern imperialism) and the nasties that come with that, issues with misogynistic individuals and issues with the status quo... but that's enough of me.

As to sensitivity - you know sure I've got a sensitive streak - you can't walk around with armor on all the time - but that's our little secret - and you know the whole being sensitive thing goes the other way too from the way this discussion has gone. Hopefully one day I'll have an editor who gets to field these things...

As to the swearing thing... well it doesn't happen often - and even less when it actually comes out of my mouth - prefer the French words better... as a whole I prefer not to use any as I think that there are other ways to articulates owns self - but sometimes I'm lazy.

Congrats on staying the path with the whole non-smoking thing, and the 3 hours ahead - I know it well - my brother plays hockey in Montreal.

In the end keep reading and maybe I'll post some stuff you actually like - but I cannot guarantee I won't offend again so fair warning.

Shawn said...

This is going to be fun...