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You are currently browsing the Stupidity In Society blog archives for January, 2009.

Jan

26

Venting is Great for One of You

By admin

We all know it’s unhealthy to keep frustrations bottled up inside. It’s much better for you mentally, emotionally, and physically if you rid yourself of them by venting. Afterwards, you feel so much better! And stress is probably the number one killer in today’s society. It aggravates existing health conditions and creates new ones. It makes you lose sleep. It causes stupid, unnecessary arguments in the home and workplace. And for what? Some stupid little problem that you have blown up in your mind, which is getting way more attention than it warrants.

You are generating negative energy in your environment when you do this. And we know that the issue is something small and stupid. How? Because after you finally vent it magically goes away. Amazing! This thing that was like a boulder about to be dropped on you and crush your entire world simply stops existing simply because you talked about it to somebody, and shared your feelings about it with them. No more looming boulder, just happy sunshine and bluebirds singing.

What happened to that boulder? Take a look at the person who just listened to you vent. It is now perched precariously over their heads. A few minutes a go they had sunshine and bluebirds, full of enthusiasm and willing to listen to your problem and try to help. Well they helped all right – your problem is gone and they now have it.

At least that’s the way it works with spouses and significant others. When it’s somebody you love, the only way to get them over the thing they are upset about is to take it from them so that you now have it. They are then happy and skipping and you are now slumped over and dejected, awaiting doomsday. It happens every time.

This is an amazing aspect of human nature. We aren’t supposed to sweat the small stuff, but we do anyway. When we get something in our mind that is bothering us, it can grow until it becomes all-consuming. Even when we know that the thing is stupid and doesn’t deserve the attention we are giving it. I mean, we can keep saying to ourselves over and over again don’t sweat the small stuff, this is no big deal, etc. but we don’t stop. We refuse to let ourselves be our own psychiatrist.

No, the only way out is venting. And unfortunately the person we vent to is usually our spouse. We get relief at the expense of their becoming burdened. There ought to be people in the phone book you can look up to go vent at. OK, there are – they are called therapists and they are very expensive! I meant somebody who didn’t go to college for 6 years. Somebody cheap. Maybe the homeless guy on the corner will listen for a couple of bucks.

Papa Riah

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Jan

23

Parent Kidnappings Cry Wolf

By admin

Parent kidnapping is an oxymoron that is on the rise in our society. This is definitely a sign that our culture has hit the skids. Those of you around in the 1950’s or 1960’s would never have heard of such a thing back then. The very idea would have been absurd. How can a parent kidnap their own child? Not possible. And to some degree, that holds true today – at least from a logical viewpoint.

But not from a legal one. And because most people will gravitate towards the logical viewpoint in their mind, it tends to defeat the legal one. This is because the cry wolf effect reduces public aid for law enforcement.

A good example of this concept is car alarms. When you hear one go off, what is your first reaction? Do you run out towards the car to stop the thief? More than likely you are annoyed at the knucklehead that owns that car, as obviously they did something to trip the alarm (such as open the door before disarming it). I like to imagine a car thief during broad daylight in a crowded city area running into no resistance because everyone assumes he is the owner.

Where I live there is something called an Amber Alert. This was developed a few years ago due the rising rate of kidnappings in our wonderful state. The way it works is, a witness to a kidnapping (or anyone who has any information about a suspected kidnapping) gives a description of the car and/or kidnapper to the police, relatively quickly after the incidence takes place. An Amber Alert with this description then interrupts every radio and television broadcast in the area as an attempt to get public help.

It’s a good idea, it has worked, and no doubt saved a few kid’s lives. But what has been happening recently is that they are using it for parent kidnappings. Meaning that a parent who is involved in a nasty divorce takes the kid when they are not supposed to, or perhaps even the reporting parent simply does an Amber Alert on their ex-spouse as their retaliation for whatever spat they are having that day.

So responsible citizens who perk up at the amber alert, ready to take notes and keep an eye out for the vehicle, hear that the suspect is the child’s mother or father and then just say oh and completely disregard it. It ends up becoming a waste of a great emergency tactic. By allowing parent kidnappings to be included in Amber Alerts the effectiveness is greatly reduced. Pretty soon we all start thinking another parent kidnapping every time we start to hear an amber alert and pay no attention anymore. It’s really too bad.

Papa Riah

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Jan

18

The Unforgivable Sin

By admin

There is a Christian radio station where I live that has an interesting call-in show hosted by several well-known church pastors. People can call in with any questions that they may have about The Bible or about the Christian faith in general. It’s actually quite good. If you want to check it out, it is syndicated nationally. The program is called Pastor’s Perspective and they will take calls from anybody and responsibly answer all kinds of religious questions. If you can’t find it on a local radio station you can pick it up on the internet at: http://kwve.com.

There are a few commonly asked questions that you hear on a regular basis. Probably the most entertaining of these is about the unforgivable sin. This is in reference to a biblical passage where Jesus alludes to a certain sin which cannot ever be forgiven. What’s so entertaining about this question is that you can tell the people who call in asking about it are scared. They are genuinely worried that they may have committed this unforgivable sin (and that consequently there is no hope for their salvation).

So what is this unforgivable sin? Blasphemy of the Holy Spirit. That’s it. Everything else is forgivable – murder, rape, swindling, you name it. Even sexual assault and murder of innocent children. Not only that, but Jesus specifically asserts that all other forms of blasphemy are forgivable as well. This would include blasphemy of God the Father and of Jesus himself. Here is the passage:

Therefore I say to you, any sin and blasphemy shall be forgiven people, but blasphemy against the Spirit shall not be forgiven.

Whoever speaks a word against the Son of Man, it shall be forgiven him; but whoever speaks against the Holy Spirit, it shall not be forgiven him, either in this age or in the {age} to come.

Matthew 12:31-32:

(These words that Jesus spoke are also reported in two of the other Gospels, Luke 12:10 and Mark 3:29.)

I was greatly reminded of this Bible passage recently when I was listening to a blues CD that an atheist friend had given me. The singer had a serious chip on his shoulder and the song lyrics were full of hateful political jargon. At one point when the music slowed down he was spewing some of that garbage and he mentioned something about the mother f—ing Holy Ghost. I kid you not. I tossed the CD in the trash shortly after that, as we had guests coming over and I was sort of previewing the CD to see if it would be OK to play while they were visiting.

So – did the singer of that band commit the unforgivable sin? Because it sure seems like if anybody ever has he is a good candidate, don’t you think? What about me for even typing that in the last paragraph and publishing it on the web? Have I just chucked my eternity into the hot coals with no hope of getting it back?

As the pastors on that radio show keep telling everybody, no. God isn’t legalistic. He isn’t going to leave you in hell forever just because you didn’t dot an i or cross a t somewhere. The Bible shows that God’s consciousness is manifested in three separate persons, that of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. But they are all God, although they are each individual functioning centers of his consciousness. How much sense does it make to single out one of these three persons (that God is) and decide that calling that particular one names is an unforgivable sin, while calling the other two names is forgiveable?

So what does it mean, then? What is the unforgivable sin? Most good pastors and Bible scholars agree that what Jesus is referring to is rejecting the testimony of the Holy Spirit. When Jesus left this earth he promised to send a helper for the Church – that is the Holy Spirit. (This promise was fulfilled on the Day of Pentecost which you can read about in the book of Acts chapter two.) The testimony of the Holy Spirit is, of course, the message of the Gospel: We are all sinners and as such are lost, but Jesus died in your place and if you accept that sacrifice which was made for you, and make him your Lord, you are saved. Rejecting that message – that is rejecting Christ, is then the unforgivable sin.

Note that your status when you die is what counts. The moment before your death, are you believing in the testimony of the Holy Spirit or are you blaspheming him by calling it a lie? If you do not believe in Christ you are doing the latter and are lost. Like the pastors on the show always say, if you are worried that you may have committed the unforgivable sin that is a sure sign you haven’t!

Papa Riah