January 15th, 2009

Do you ever just get fed up with everything and have to ask what's really going on?? I don't just mean with one specific thing or any particular social drama you might be involved with at the moment. No, I mean everything. Life itself. Growing up, I did all the time. I've gotten like that many times through out my life. And it always fascinates me whenever people want to avoid this subject or it makes them uncomfortable. But honestly, who are we, why are we here, where did we come from and where are we going when we die? I would love to hear everyone's answers to these four questions. Seriously though, what's the deal with this whole universe anyway? What in tarnations is going on??? I was in a strange mood this afternoon and an interesting thought dawned on me while I aimlessly pondered various things. And it was a thought about perception. When we ask what's going on, we have to consider our perception of things. What do you perceive this life we live in to be?

Did you know that we all perceive things differently. What is a reality to one person may be non-existent to another. Just think back to when you were a naive kid and never had to consider financial issues. Man, our perception of life back then was sure something. But let's consider something else here. We know that mankind shares features that allow us to perceive things in the same way, such as our five basic senses. But did you know that there are other life forms who would perceive things completely different from us? Of course you do, but have you ever really thought about the significance of that? For example, other creatures might see things that are apparently non-existent to the human eye. We could both be looking at the exact same spot, yet, see two very different things in a very literal sense. Or, other creatures hear things that we cannot hear. We all know this, but it's important to keep in mind as I keep going here.

Okay, so there are things happening all around us that we don't even notice, because we do not perceive them. And, not surprisingly, the things we do perceive we constantly argue over because we all interpret them and their level of importance differently. But that's the besides the point. Let's consider for a moment how there are creatures out there who do not even know that we exist. Their perception of reality does not even include us in it. Or if it does, they certainly do not understand us. Is it possible you think that there may also be things above us that we are not able to perceive or understand? Here's an interesting analogy: are we able to observe or perceive gravity? Now you might say "well duh, of course we can." But take a look at my question again. I am asking if we can observe or perceive gravity directly? Can you see it? Can you see the force that pulls everything towards the ground? If you can, then boy, I'd like to get a hold of your contacts prescription. But no, we cannot SEE gravity. But we observe and can literally feel the affects of gravity everyday of our lives. So though we cannot see it, we know it exists because we can see and feel the affect that it has. What about radio waves? We can't see those either, yet we know they exist. Our perception of things like gravity or radio waves is interesting to consider. Now let's think about G-d for a moment here. Though we cannot see Him, we observe the effect He has had on the universe everyday simply because the universe exists. In other words, we know there is a Creator, even though we can not directly see Him, because creation exists. Now you might say "where did the Creator come from?" and that's EXACTLY my point. We may be able to perceive that such a thing as a creator exists, but we cannot fully understand it (though the Hebrew and Aramaic Scriptures do address this question, but regardless, our perception still has a hard time grasping concepts like eternity, timelessness, etc.) But we are much like the creatures out there who may perceive our presence, but they don't understand it (nor care about it I would assume, lest we affect them in some way.) There are so many things out there that we are not capable of observing, and how foolish we are in trying to understand things sometimes. Indeed, how foolish we are for not always considering the fact that there may be things above us with a greater perception than what we currently have of this universe.

So, it's interesting when you accept the fact that we therefore have a limited perception of this existence we are all caught up in. It's almost a learned helplessness coming to grips with the fact that we are incapable of understanding everything in our present form. A humbling form of "learned helplessness" so to say that can then be one of the first steps to us truly growing, understanding and becoming who we are meant to be. But there's a few other things to consider when it comes to perception. There are people out there who are convinced they have had a super natural experience with ghosts or aliens of some sort. Now, the para normal is something we have a difficult time observing. In fact, all we can do is base our understanding of it on the accounts of our fellow man. We must trust their perception and regard it as truth. Of course, there are too many skeptics out there to ever allow a super natural experience to be regarded as truthful fact. I myself am one of those skeptics, and based on our discussion of perception so far, I want to explain to you why I'm a skeptic. Think about your dreams. Have you ever had a dream that seemed so real that when you woke up it was extremely difficult to decipher reality from the dream? It's happened to me, I know that. Or, have you ever experienced something where for a moment, you were convinced of something that was not true, yet it was so real that everything inside you just jumped? It is my belief that any so called experiences with aliens are a dream that for people is so real that they regard it as truth. And ghosts, much the same way, can be something that has gripped a person's perception and through their lack of understanding, they also regard it as truth. Believe me, I've been in some situations where I couldn't tell the truth either, and was convinced of things that may not have been there. Our senses and perception aren't always reliable. But what amazes me is that people who would be so quick to believe in either ghosts or aliens (or the possibility thereof) when there is no substantial evidence of any sort, these very same people are quick to deny the existence of (or possibility) of a Creator when everything around us seems to point to an intelligent design.

How you can say "oh there are probably aliens out there" but not "Hmm.. maybe there is a G-d/Creator out there?" is... well, I can't say it's beyond me. Because it's not. I know that believing in aliens is easier then believing in G-d, because aliens so far have not told us what to do, nor have they condemned or judged our wrongdoings. And it's for that very reason why I think people are so uncomfortable about talking about some of these subjects. They know they don't have all the answers, but on the same token, they don't want to be told that they're wrong. They hate to be challenged. In fact, they are offended. This goes for ALL parties. Most Christian's often can't handle tough questions, and then other people don't like being preached to about spirituality, while when it comes to science, people won't accept the facts when they're proven wrong. It's an endless cycle where nobody is willing to humble themselves at a chance to better understand the universe and ourselves, the ones living in it. How very, very sad. It is my hope that I can explore such issues as the way we perceive life (and what may be a truth, and what may not be) with someone other than myself. But often, it's simply just me sitting alone with the Scriptures, observing the debates of other (mainly closed minded) people who are stuck in their way of thinking, not able to step outside and consider the infinite possibilities of the universe. And if you think about it, this could really be anything since we are limited in our perception and therefore, there is only so much we can know at this point. I have my beliefs which I regard as universal truth, and though I have searched long and hard in order to come to such a conclusion, I will not hesitate to change them if I am ever shown anything of greater substance.

That brings me to another point. Our perception can change. You again must be thinking "well, duh" and yes, it may seem obvious, but the causes and extent to which it can change may not seem so obvious. The Scriptures says that sin never came into the world until we ate of the tree of knowledge of good and evil. And the Scriptures also say that you should not go out of your way to learn about evil. Now that's an interesting concept. Don't learn about evil? Is that really a wise thing in our world? Since evil clearly exists, by not learning about it and abstaining from instructing our kids in it, what are we doing? Are we keeping them in the dark, or... ? By the time I had learned this teaching, I had already been deep down in the hole of learning about evil. So to me, it actually made sense. We are often curious creatures. We thirst for knowledge. We want to know more... but, I'm going to be blunt and say that some things we really just shouldn't know about. And evil is one of them. Why? Well, consider this. A village of people live together in a secluded area, away from the rest of the world. They have no knowledge of firearms. Some foreigner comes along and instructs them on how to build and use them. What do you think is going to happen? Albeit that as that village grows, someone will end up getting shot. In fact, it may happen right away because such a culture may not be ready for that level of technology. And now you may know why Africa is in such turmoil....

I've read and learned about a lot of strange things in my very young age. I've read the "satanic bible" by Anton LeVay; Mein Kampf by Adolph Hitler (couldn't get all the way thorugh it though); and I've studied a wide variety of subjects (both philosophical and practical) pertaining to all sorts of mischief and mayhem. Things nobody really needs to know about. I mean, I sure didn't. But it made me feel powerful, like I knew something. I've always been drawn towards knowing things that nobody else knows, but it's rarely done me any good. It helps me to gain a better understanding of overall life, but it creates troubles in being a good person because knowing all sorts of evils creates temptations of many kinds. And this is the big problem, because temptation can lead you into allll sorts of trouble. One thing leads to another which leads to another and so on. This is how people get caught up in lust, pornography, thievery, voyeurism, drugs, promiscuity... everything! And THEN, your perception of things is totally thrown off. When you get caught in the trap of temptation and develop habits and addictions that become beyond your control, boy, your perception of life really changes. You've lost that innocence, when things were good, you know? Instead of educating on evil, we should educate on the good. Focus on the positive. By promoting positive attitudes and good morals, I believe this can develop a foundation where evil will have one heck of a time conquering. And THAT is a perception that I can only strive for at this point by limiting my exposure to things I've studied in the past, and focusing instead on the good things of my future. The Scriptures call this "sanctification", and it is this setting apart from the rest of the world that has always been the will of G-d in His people's lives.

So, wrapping up here, although this has been all over the place, I want you to keep a few things in mind. Number one, we only use around 10% of our brain. Imagine our understanding of the universe is we were able to use ten times that (100%). Realize the limitations we have, and that so much exists that we cannot see or perceive. But above all, we can't forget about the power of love and how if we approached everything with a loving attitude, we would be much better off. To learn more about this, a good place to start would be parables of Yeshua the Messiah, the one whom the world calls Jesus Christ. He teaches the only moral guide I have found to be without flaw: the Torah of Elokim (Law/instruction of G-d). That is man's divine instructions in righteousness from our source of life. May we all come to understand and accept His sovereign will in these last days of turmoil where the only unfailing guidance comes from that very source which is flawlessly above our own understanding.