Archive for June, 2010

In this essay, blogger “Elusive Wapiti” comments about “traditional” understandings that may be rooted more in the Industrial Revolution than in Christian Orthodoxy. Don’t take offense at his title; he’s just trying to make you think about “Churchy” ideas that are not always consistent with what scripture commands.

Take what you can and will from this. There is a particular kind of Protestant church that is always hankering back to the “good old days” without contemplating deeply enough what was so good about them; and we rarely seem them doing things like living like the Amish. This may manifest in them discouraging a woman from working outside the home, even if she has no children; or in pressuring young men to get on the College/Student Debt hamster wheel when that may not be the best rational choice for their personal situation.

Credo #46: Eternity now

Posted: June 26, 2010 in Credo, For brothers

You are living in eternity now.

Do we hector relationship-hungry single woman to get into relationships with unstable men, or, say, homeless ones? No. Is this evidence that we think these men should not be included in Church life or experience the fellowship and the leadership’s love and help when it is appropriate? No again. It is simply to say that the metrics for and the contextual response to these different aspects of Christian life is more complicated than a rule book thrown at the local assembly of believers.

With all that being said, I’m not commenting on relationships; nor even on Christian life per se. I’m leading up to someone else’s commentary; essentially his sociologic observations about the hierarchies of men and how they sort themselves out in groups. I do think you have value to gain in thinking about this.

Vox Day (Theodore Beale) has conceived of a kind of shorthand for describing what he sees in the world of men. He expands upon the secular world’s use of “alpha” and “beta” terms (themselves derived from Zoologic observations) to come up with a categorization that has more semantic clarity, using other Greek letters. I grant that he comes across as both cynical and harsh. I grant that he at times is cynical and harsh. Get over that if you want to gain the insight that you can from thinking on these things, since life can be harsh and a lack of understanding can leave you cynical.

I link to some key essays of his here, here, and here. When you have skimmed over those, then read this one.

Father’s Day

Posted: June 21, 2010 in Uncategorized

It so happens that my fellowshiping in the institutional sense is divided between a local Assemblies of God church and a local Baptist church. It so happened last year that Father’s Day was on the weekend I was at the A/G fellowship. This year it so happened that I was at the Baptist fellowship.

Last year fathers — of which I am one — were honored in the sense of being recognized and acclaimed. This year there was a recognition of Father’s Day which took the form of a video which amounted to a child telling his dad about all the reasons he needs to be a better dad. This was followed by an invitation for fathers present to stand (so, I am thinking, here comes the ‘balance’) and be recognized. However the opportunity to recognize ernest believing fathers was squandered with more finger-wagging. I had thought to let the matter be; but seeing this post by Vox Day (Theodore Beale) caused me to reconsider. I disagree with his idea of “avoiding church” — and I understand the noun “church” with a different understanding than most — but his words are worth contemplating all the same.
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Edit: ex post facto, the title of his post was changed to say “change” curches rather than “avoid” church.

The Courage to Say No, by Paul Coughlin, is another must-read.

I excerpt here:


The ability to say no without feeling woozy leads to the issue of ownership. Who are you? Who owns you? If you think your parents or church or culture owns you, then eventually you’ll end up carrying out their will and living by their definition of you. They usually will lay claims upon you that override your will with theirs. If the church is authentically asking you to adopt God’s will instead of your own, then that’s a different story. But the church can often ask you to take on the will of its leaders disguised as God’s. Sometimes this is done out of ignorance, and sometimes it can be a thumos-crushing form of spiritual dissimulation.

Go forth and study.

I have added to the blogroll “The Social Pathologist”, a man writing from a Thomistic Catholic perspective.    I don’t agree with every little  “jot and tittle” so to speak; but you should not miss his writings in your explorations of faith and masculinity.

Aphorism #21

Posted: June 8, 2010 in Aphorism

“Be arrogant or be ignorant, but not arrogant AND ignorant.

-John Immel