Thursday, August 22, 2019

So you want to live an ideal life? Consider this guide.

Sitting in church on a Sunday not long ago, and the pastor commented about the perfect life. He said, “If anyone can say they live the perfect life, then they may be allowed to preach the perfect life.” I cannot share the perfect life with you, but I can share my ideal life and achieve this life of obtaining perfectiveness with a simple guide. I will present this simple guide to you in just a moment. One may be surprised when this journey may begin, yet one will not be surprised at where this journey will end. Please bear with me as I lead you to the ideal life.

In Plato's Republic, Plato writes about the idea of happiness. Plato contends that one who is moral is the only one who can be truly happy. To be happy, one must understand the cardinal virtues. To be happy is but one of many parts of the perfect life, but I think it is important.

A person's life experiences dictate a person's reality of life. No two lives lived are the same, nor will ever be the same. What is true to you may not be true to me. What is true to another is true to another, and in the end, each person will have lived their own truths. Each life can be perfect if, in the persons' reality, it is perfect for them. While others may look on and judge your life, it is your life that you can make perfect for you. If we live a life worrying about what others think of us, we will live a life of pure disappointment. God and only God will judge each individual's life based on the experiences God has allowed that person to live, whether preordained or through free will. In conclusion, and if you agree, each person's happiness is dictated by the individual, or we could say what is happy to you may not be happy to another. What this means is, we are all unique and special to God.

When Plato wrote about the cardinal virtues, many of you may not know that these same virtues are found in the bible. As an avid reader of the bible and Greek philosophy, I find it remarkable how much Greek philosophy is found in the bible. Plato brought four cardinal virtues to us through Aristotle: prudence, justice, fortitude, and temperance. God gave us three cardinal virtues. Let us examine these virtues on our way to the ideal life.

1.    Prudence: "right reason applied to practice." Prudence is a virtue that allows us to judge correctly what is right and what is wrong. When we mistake good for evil, we are showing our lack of prudence. Disregarding others' advice or warnings whose judgment does not coincide with ours is a sign of imprudence. The next time you get into an argument of politics, remember this virtue, as our leaders, and I mean all of our leaders have failed miserably for decades in this regard.  

2.    Justice: "the constant and permeant determination to give everyone his or her rightful due." It should not matter what we think of anyone, yet injustice occurs when we as individuals or by law deprive someone of the rights to be innocent until proven guilty. I am reminded of the Kavanaugh hearings and our politicians exclaiming that this man is guilty and should show his innocence. Legal rights can never outweigh natural rights.

3.    Fortitude: We all face obstacles as we gather our life's experiences for evaluation under prudence and justice. Fortitude applied correctly is reasoned and reasonable in our quest to overcome fear or complete what needs to be done. Fortitude gives us the strength to carry on and the strength to do what is prudent and justice.

4.    Temperance: Restraint or the idea of seeking virtue in all that we do. There is passion, there is vice, and there is the happy middle road of virtue. Virtue is the middle road, where passion and vice are dangerously traveled if selected. A glass of wine with dinner can be virtuous, yet a bottle of wine can be a vice. Temperance is the "golden mean." If you are a math wizard, think of it as statistics and the mean of an equation. We should want to strive for the mean in all of our desires.

There are three theological virtues. In Corinthians 13:13, "And now abide faith, hope, and love, but the greatest of these is love." In original Greek, the word "agape" is used throughout. This word was translated into English as charity, but the word "love" is preferred by most translations. One might consider the highest form of love is charity. Note that Corinthians' correlation can be tricky to translate but originally written in Greek as our first four virtues.

1.    Faith: Without faith, every virtue we talk about today is unattainable. I am not here to preach to you how to believe in God, as God has allowed you to live your life as to what is true to you. However, as a follower of Jesus, what I will say is this, and note I did not say, worshiper, if you put your faith in Jesus and follow his teachings, your quest for Temperance, Fortitude, Justice, and Prudence can be obtainable.

2.    Hope: Without hope, we can live our lives as an unbeliever in God. I am not here to tell you how to believe in God, as God has allowed you to live your life as to what is true to you. There will be many who pass through the pearly gates of heaven, and each will have lived a unique individual life. We hope for union with God when our days on this earth are over, and we will be delivered into heaven as long as we practice faith, temperance, fortitude, justice, and prudence.

3.    Love: The most important of all virtues, in my opinion. Without love, our time on earth will be spent lonely and afraid of what may come. Our attention to love starts with family. The family unit should be bestowed, unconditional love. As parents, we should have a positive impact on our children's lives, we sacrifice so that others within our family may succeed, and we sacrifice unselfishly. Children hear me today; love your parents as they sacrifice much for you so that you have the opportunity to succeed. Be kind to one another, compassionate, caring, thoughtful, and render acts of kindness. When we practice this love within our home, others' love and charity will be evident outside the home.  We will be delivered into heaven if we practice love with faith, hope, temperance, fortitude, justice, prudence, and follow the 10 commandments.

I am not a perfect man, but I live an ideal life. Life is lived by risk and reward decisions every day. I have practiced justice, temperance, fortitude, and prudence in assessing the risk and reward decisions I make every day and in my interactions with others. I practice these virtues with faith, hope, and love in mind. I practice "my faith" in God, following the 10-commandments. It is the 10-commandments that bind our virtues and dictate a way to live ideally. My ideal of faith may be different than yours. Yet, it goes without saying, "I am a Christian, that is to say, a follower of Christ."

I am very blessed to be in love with my life partner. My wife is God’s gift to me as without her in my life, I would have floundered in eternal failure, a less than ideal life. Our family has been blessed, but not without the fortitude to practice the seven virtues and the 10-commandments. I say practice because we are not all perfect in our practice; that is why we need God's forgiveness. I have overcome many obstacles in life, I am sure there will be many more, but in the end, when all is said and done, I can say that being a part of this family has pretty much been a perfect life. I can only hope that each of you is a part of a family that loves you. When each family member lives by the guide I have set forth for you today, your odds are great that you will live an ideal life within your reality.

"Everyone has untold stories of pain and sadness that make them love and live a little differently than you do.  Instead of judging with malice, be mindful of practicing the seven virtues and the 10-commandments. I think the 7-virtues combined with the 10-commandments make for a simple guide to the ideal life. Try to understand, God gave you this life to live, and you are the sum of your experiences, good and bad. You can lead as perfect of a life as your reality dictates when you are mindful of the seven virtues and the 10-commandments.  

Thursday, June 6, 2019

Virginia Beach shooting: When evil calls "Be Prepared"

Always Be Prepared


"In English, this motto is most commonly Be Prepared. In the third part of Scouting for Boys, Robert Baden-Powell explains the meaning of the phrase: The Scout Motto is: BE PREPARED, which means you are always in a state of readiness in mind and body to do your DUTY. "

The question becomes, what is your duty? I think about Police officers, Military personnel, Congress, and the President of the United States, each having made personal decisions to uphold a commitment to his fellow man. The Virginia Beach shooting is a reminder as to why the 2nd amendment is so crucial to this idea of being prepared. "The right to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed" is for the very purpose of defending against evil. A look at America's most essential cities and strict gun laws compared to gun violence is all we need to understand why strict gun laws do not work.

 The Bible is full of stories concerning wolves and sheep. I choose to "Be Prepared." I accept the path of the sheepdog. Each person who reads this has decided to be a wolf, a sheep, or a sheepdog. Then there are those like DeWayne Craddock who chose to be a wolf in sheep's clothing. It is a wolf in sheep's clothing; the 2nd amendment proponents are committed to training, to "Be Prepared." Police, our golden sheepdogs, cannot be everywhere.  But sheepdogs, we are the ones who prepare to fill the role of backup, last chance, or when all else fails. 

When Tommy Norment goes to Richmond, I hope he will consider the following.

1. If you create "gun-free zones," it is the city's responsibility to post-golden sheepdogs (police) in every gun-free zone.

2. Gun Owners should have an incentive to purchase gun safes. A generous tax credit for the purchase of gun safes for home security and previous purchases should be considered.

3. Training: James City County has gone too long without a gun range. Whereby citizens can practice gun safety and provide active shooter training; citizens who choose to be sheepdogs should be working more closely with local police in supporting roles. We should be planning for active shooter response and how to identify sheepdogs in an actual situation.  I would not be upset if gun owners were required to receive better training. If we promote these types of ideas, we will always "Be Prepared." However, if we allow the sheep to take from us our teeth, the wolves will surely kill us all.

Monday, April 8, 2019

An explanation as to why, the 2nd Amendment should be protected and coveted.

There may be many reasons for the 2nd amendment. Let us examine the most important.

This blog is in response to Dr. Jeffery Fiske's opinion as found in the Williamsburg Gazette. Dr. Fiske had written about the reasons why the 2nd amendment should be altered or removed. 

Being of the thought every opinion published requires respect of our fair and most honorable local Gazette, I would like to offer discourse to Dr. Jeffery Fiske at el. I will provide my dissertation in the same length of writing as Dr. Jeffery Fiske as this topic does not bear witness to 250 words or less. Within these writings, we will attempt to offer an argument for the 2nd Amendment concerning all.

To proceed let us start with the words of the Declaration of Independence (DOI) and end with natures first right to self-defense. My dear fellow citizens bear witness to the following words found in the (DOI).

“That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness.”

Layman’s Terms:
It is the right of the people to alter or to abolish government, and institute a new government. We might do so if our safety and happiness were to be subjected to authoritarian rule. Examples of authoritarian rule: Socialist Democracy, communism, and tyranny.

“Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn, that mankind is more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed.”

Layman’s Terms:
A long-established government in these United States of America is a republic form of governance. Our forefathers warned us not to change for light and transient causes. What this means is, a cause originating or having an effect outside an entity. When a group of people within our government decides to promote socialist democracy in place of a republic, we should have cause for concern for our happiness and safety.

But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security.

Layman’s terms:
Despotism can be defined as the exercise of absolute power, especially in a cruel and oppressive way. Usurpation can be described as a means of taking someone’s power or property by force. If this were to happen to our republic or I believe if we the people were to witness abuses, usurpations, and despotism then we the people have the right to throw off such government and or attempted takeover of our republic. Examples of an attempted takeover of power and an attempt to take one’s property by force.
1.    ACA healthcare, free college tuition, all of the carrots they now dangle before you, will take ownership from citizens by force to give to others without the permission of the owner.
2.    The New Green Deal: If implemented by socialist democrats will force you to a standard of living without your consent. Will take from you, your property and power to pursue happiness and safety within the dictates of your own reason. 

“–Such has been the patient sufferance of these Colonies, and such is now the necessity which constrains them to alter their former Systems of Government. The history of the present King of Great Britain is a history of repeated injuries and usurpations, all having in direct object the establishment of an absolute Tyranny over these States. To prove this, let Facts be submitted to a candid world.” Let us here offer our facts of Tyranny, if Socialist Democrats take power. In the interest of space, I will provide four.

1.    The New Green Deal: If implemented by socialist democrats will force you to a standard of living without your consent. Will take from you, your property and power to pursue happiness and safety within the dictates of your own reason. 
2.    Abolishing of the Electoral college. This right and protection afforded, we the people, should be held close and safe to our bosom. For if we allow a socialist type of government to take from us this right, we have the right to make back this ethical and proper principal by force and as needed.
3.    Reparations for the Black community. Socialist Democrats have now offered another carrot for consumption albeit empty of calories. This is another example of the use of tyrannist like authority to take from one without permission and give another, undeservingly mind you, for nothing more than the premise of the vote. In other words, the socialist democrat is trying to buy an election with citizen achievements.
4.    The disposition of the 2nd Amendment. If the citizen right to natures first law of self-defense is in some manner, abolished, severely restricted or mandatory gun confiscation, we the people have every right to throw the government off.

It is, in fact, our right per the (DOI) to determine the individual's fate and pursuit of happiness. It is our right to expect reasonable safety. It is the citizens right to protect our republic and to protect the Constitution of these United States and its Amendments. It is our duty per the (DOI) to cast off those who wantonly will take from us without our permission. We must provide guards for the security of our republic, our pursuit of happiness and our safety. We the people have the right to cast off by force and as needed a socialist, communist or tyrannical form of government.

Dr. Fiske writes,“with the advent of professional law enforcement, the need for the 2nd Amendment is no longer needed. This is a false statement. Dr. Fiske writes the second amendment was written for citizens who live remote. This too is a misconception.   The police can never be there to protect you at all times, and it does not matter if you live in a city or are remote. Every citizen has the right to natures first right of self-defense and the second amendment gives you that right. In, District of Columbia vs. Heller, the Supreme court ruled, that a federal handgun ban violates the Second Amendment. In McDonald v. Chicago, the justices held that state and local governments also could not prohibit handguns. These decisions debunk the ideas of remote only.

I offer the following for consideration: The 2nd amendment and why it is so essential to our pursuit of happiness and safety. Our forefathers wrote the Declaration of Independence and listed the reasons why and grievances against, the King of England. During the revolutionary war, ordinary citizens took up arms against a tyrannical government. Lives were lost, and freedoms were won. We were an armed citizenry willing to fight for our beliefs. Without weapons, we would have had no recourse but to be subjected to King rule.  When our forefathers wrote the second amendment, they kept in mind the first law, natures right to self-defense. I think we are again at this critical moment in history, where we may have to decide to fight a tyrannical government should socialist democrat’s take control of our government and enforce the listed grievances at el.

Mom is trying to get us food

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