Even In The 13th Century, Some Jews Believed The Earth To Be 15 Billion Years Old

Modern religious Creationists of both Haredi Jewish and, especially, Christian fundamentalists persuasion (the Young Earth Creationism types) would have us believe that the earth and universe is about 5,500 years old (and no greater than 10,000 years). Modern scientists tell us that the earth is about 4.5 billion years old and the universe is about 13.8 billion years old. Now, jump back 700 years to the 13th century, wherein Isaac ben Samuel of Acre and other Orthodox Jewish kabbalists concluded that the earth is actually 49,000 years old and that the universe is 15 billion years old. What?! Did you just ask? Would you like to know how they arrived at this conclusion?

“Rabbi Tanhuma said: In its due time the universe was created. It was not appropriate to be create before then, but it was created in its time, as it is said ‘He made everything beautiful in its time.’ Rabbi Abbahu said: From this we learn that the Holy One, blessed be He, kept on constructing lands and destroying them until he constructed the present one and said, ‘This pleases Me, the others did not.’ Rabbi Eleazar said: This is a door which is opened to the depths, as it says, ‘And God saw everything that He had made and, behold, it was very good.’” – Kohelet Rabbah 3:14, written in the 7th Century C.E./A.D. (Hmmm, so no Jurassic or Cretaceous period for us, then? Shucks.)

Anyone who says that Jewish religious tradition is at odds with modern scientific studies is woefully ignorant of Jewish religious tradition. Most Jews accept the theory of evolution and do not see it in contradiction to our mythic accounts of creation. Sure there are those modern sects of traditional Judaism (the ultra-fundamentalists, like the Haredi) that have taken a Christian-like literalist interpretive approach to Jewish “biblical” texts, but they are actually not in-line historically with Jewish contemplations on the relationship between Jewish religious myths and the (pre-)scientific age objective-made observations of the world around us. Jewish religious thinkers and community leaders had already begun to come to the conclusion centuries before the rise of modern science that the myths of Torah (the Jewish Bible) had hidden times frames by which to reveal the “true” age of things and the order of their developments. And, some of these conclusions and imagined beliefs are quite creative! It is no wonder, then, that so many breakthrough scientists have been Jewish. But, on to the question above. How did the 13th century Jewish kabbalists come to the conclusion that the earth is 49,000 years old and that the universe is 15 billion years old? Are you curious to know?

The 13th century’s Sefer HaTemunah’s take on the Sabbatical cycles and the age of the universe

One of the main concepts in Sefer HaTemunah is that of the connection of the Sabbatical year (Hebrew: Shmita) with sephirot and the creation of more than one world. The author of Sefer HaTemunah believed that worlds are created and destroyed, supporting this theory with a quote from the Midrash, “God created universes and destroys them.”[1] The Talmud (Sanhedrin 97a) states that “Six thousand years shall the world exist, and one [thousand, the seventh], it shall be desolate”.[5] Sefer HaTemunah asserts that this 7000-year cycle is equivalent to one Sabbatical cyle. Because there are seven such cycles per Jubilee, the author concludes that the world will exist for 49,000 years.[1]

According to some sources, the author of Sefer HaTemunah believed that the world was currently in the second Sabbatical cycle, corresponding to Gevurah (Severity), which occurs between the cycles Chesed (Kindness) and Tiferet (Adornment).[6] Sefer HaTemunah offers a description of the final Shmita, Malkuth (Kingdom), as “distinctly utopian” in character. This may explain why the book was widely embraced by Kabbalists.[7]
According to Kaplan[8] the Sabbatical cycles in Sefer HaTemunah can be used as a basis for calculating the age of the universe. While Sefer HaTemunah sees the world as existing in the second cycle, others[9] say it is in the seventh cycle.[1] If so, Adam was created when the universe was 42,000 years old, and six worlds were created and destroyed before the creation of Adam.[1] This thesis was laid out by Rabbi Isaac ben Samuel of Acre, a 13th-century Kabbalist, who said that when calculating the age of the universe, one must use divine years rather than physical years.
“ I, the insignificant Yitzchak of Akko, have seen fit to write a great mystery that should be kept very well hidden. One of God’s days is a thousand years, as it says, “For a thousand years are in Your eyes as a fleeting yesterday.” Since one of our years is 365 ¼ days, a year on High is 365,250 our years.[10] ”

Rabbi Yitzchak of Akko then goes on to explain a value of 49,000 years, but does not proceed with the multiplication, nor the reduction of 49,0000 to 42,000, which is Kaplan’s own interpretation. Kaplan calculates the age of the universe to be 15,340,500,000 years old.[1][11] His reasoning was as follows: as the Midrash states, “A thousand years in your sight are but as yesterday” (Psalm 90:4); a physical year contains 365 ¼ days, which, if multiplied by 1000 would give the length of a divine year as 365,250 physical years; if we are living in the last, 7th Sabbatical cycle, that would mean that the creation as it described in the Bible happened 42,000 divine years ago; to convert this figure to physical years it should be multiplied by 365,250; this gives the result 15,340,500,000 years.[1]

In 1993, Rabbi Aryeh Kaplan wrote that the Big Bang occurred “approximately 15 billion years ago”, calling this “the same conclusion” as the 13th century kabbalists.[1] According to a 2013 estimate by ESA’s Planck project, the age of the universe is 13.798 ± 0.037 billion years.[12] Kaplan also relates to Sefer HaTemunah the idea that Torah teachings are compatible with other areas of modern science. According to Kaplan, Orthodox Jews often challenge the findings of paleontology and geology as conflicting with Torah concepts. But in an “extremely controversial” essay, Israel Lipschitz drew on the writings of Abraham ibn Ezra, Nahmanides, and Bahya ibn Paquda to argue the opposite conclusion: “See how the teachings of our Torah have been vindicated by modern discoveries.” Lipschitz wrote that fossils of mammoths and dinosaurs represent previous Sabbatical cycles in which humans and other beings lived in universes before Adam, and that the Himalayas were formed in a great upheaval, one of the upheavals mentioned in Sefer HaTemunah.[1]

Sourced from World Heritage Encyclopedia™ licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0

To read the full article and cited references – http://worldheritage.org/article/WHEBN0028009518/Sefer%20HaTemunah

#Creationism #Midrash #KoholetRabbah #SeferHaTemunah #Genesis #youngearth #creationscience #intelligentdesign #evolution

Conversion Therapy Is Unnecessary Religious Pseudoscience, Like Creationism

“Pirke Abot, chapter 5, section 10, states: “There are four attitudes among men: He that says, “What is mine is mine and what is yours is yours” – this is the average attitude; but some [Sages] say that this is the attitude of the Sodomites….” A Sodomite is described here as being a person who accepts no responsibility for the poor in his community. He owes them nothing.” – Rabbi Gershon Steinberg-Caudill

Sedom v’Gemorah (Sodom and Gomorrah) were ancient plant-cultivating cities, and their very names are references to this fertile and, thus, prosperous lands. The crimes (sins) of these legendary cities in Torah and extended TaNaKh (the Jewish Bible) and in the Talmud are the crimes of selfish indulgence and utter lack of hospitality toward strangers. This is made clear in the Torah legend with the extreme behavior of “all” the men of the city, from “youth” to “old man,” towards the messengers of Avram’s god (Avraham) that arrived to the city. “All” the men of the city came to Lot’s home intent on raping these messengers, an act of extreme violence symbolizing extreme inhospitality. The intent or “moral” of the Torah myth is to compare the character and quality of Avraham’s and Lot’s families, the displaced tribal family, to the settled and indulgent city-dwellers.

Sadly, among many European and American “Judeo-Christian” modern religious traditions these passages are erroneously translated as cities given to homosexuality and this is the reason for their destruction, and that it is evidence that “the Bible” abhors and prohibits homosexual behavior and orientation. This is categorically untrue when Torah is read on its own terms (without modern hermeneutics placed upon it), for the Hebrew “Bible” has nothing to say about committed and loving homosexual relationships. Except, maybe only positive things to say about it – think about the very intimate relationship between David and Johnathan (future-king David clearly swings both ways in orientation in the actual Hebrew, and Johnathan’s father in a fit of anger eventually attempts to shame him about it, showing he knows about them!). As to the two infamous (in modern times) Leviticus same-sex prohibitions (verses), both are expressed without built-in context to explain specifically what the “lyings of woman” are, but context clearly shows that the prohibited acts are males raping another male and heterosexual males sexually substituting a male for sex “as if” he were a woman in an idolatrous sexual act.

“Ve’et zachar lo tishkav mishkevey ishah to’evah hee. And a male do not lie down with as lyings of woman, abhorrent he.” – Vayikra/Leviticus 18.22

“Ve’ish asher yishkav et-zacher mishkevey ishah to’evah asu shneyhem mot yumatu dmeyhem bam. And man that lie down with a male as lyings of woman, abhorrent to do, both of them death by execution, extreme guilt in them.” – Vayikra/Leviticus 20.13

“Where is the prohibition of a male? Because it says, `if a man,’ a man and not a minor. And it says, `lie with a male,’ whether the passive partner be an adult or a minor. And it says, `as with a woman,’ from which we learn that there are two modes of lying with a woman (that are prohibited).” – Mas. Sanhedrin 54a, 28-32

These prohibitions are a part of the codex of laws dealing with familial sexual relations that, then, extend to sexual relations with neighbors and, then, to idolatrous religious sexual practices (turning your children into sexual prostitutes or engaging in idolatrous sexual rituals) in which these prohibitions are found. Further, these verses that are focused on male-with-male sex, as with most of the prohibitions of this codex, *only* applies to Jewish males within the boundaries of the sovereign kingdom of ancient Israel. Of all the prohibitions within this part of the law codex, these two verses (18.22 and 20.13) are the only ones that are enigmatic in nature – requiring contextual clarification beyond the verse itself, clarification that would have been commonly understood during the time of their writing. Using the whole of TaNaKh as context, it is rather clear that Leviticus only prohibits the following “situational specific” acts of homosexual union: that of a male (assumed to be sexually responsive towards females) substituting a male for sex when a female is available (whether by rape or consent is not specific, but overall context leans towards rape), and that of a male having ritual sex with a sacred prostitute of his own gender (a common practice within the religions of non-Israeli nations).

“There is to be no holy-prostitute of the daughters of Israel, there is to be no holy-prostitute of the sons of Israel. You are not to bring the fee of a whore or the price of a dog (pagan priest) to the house of YHWH your G-d, for any vow; for an abomination to YHWH your G-d are the two of them!” – D’varim/Dueteronomy 23.18-19

“When (David) finished speaking with Saul, Jonathan’s soul became bound up with the soul of David; Jonathan loved David as himself. Saul took him (into his service) that day and would not let him return to his father’s house. Jonathan and David made a pact, because (Jonathan) loved him as himself. Jonathan took off the cloak and tunic he was wearing and gave them to David, together with his sword, bow, and belt.” – Shmuel 1/Samuel 1 18.1-4

It is truly amazing that the religious issue over naturally occurring “homosexuality” is still a very present and contentious issue in present scientifically and historically enlightened modern society. It is truly amazing that, to this very day, those who are LGBTQ are being stigmatized, threatened, discriminated against, demonized, and harmed within societies due to the teachings of present day theistic religions. The simple fact is, the statement that “the bible condemns homosexual acts” is simply untrue! Maybe so in English translations of the “Bible” and in Common Era (A.D.) theistic teachings of what the ancient Hebrew scrolls are saying. But, the simple fact is that Torah (and TaNaKh), the Jewish “Bible” does not condemn homosexual acts, only the very specific acts of a male raping a male and a male substituting a male for a female for sex during idolatrous fertility rituals. The Talmud of the first modern monotheistic Jewish rabbis (that replaced the Temple cult henotheistic theocratic religious system) backs this understanding of the two ancient prohibition verses in Leviticus. Homosexuality itself and homosexual relationships were not an issue to the ancient BCE Jews within their tribalistic family-Nation lifestyle.

#LGBTQ #Equality #ReligiousFundamentalism #ReparativeTherapy #ConversionTherapy #Christian #Jewish #Islamic

Boynton Beach outlaws ‘conversion therapy’ on minors
http://www.sun-sentinel.com/local/palm-beach/fl-boynton-bans-conversion-therapy-20170104-story.html
January 4, 2017, 8:35 PM
LGBT youngsters living in Boynton Beach are free to be themselves and love who they want to love without worrying about medical efforts to change them.
The city on Tuesday became the latest municipality in South Florida to outlaw “conversion therapy,” a method aimed at converting a person’s gender identity or sexual orientation.
The Boynton Beach Commission gave initial approval to an ordinance banning licensed professionals from trying to convert the gender identity or sexual orientation of LGBT youth. Violators can be fined $500 or sued by the city, according to language in the ordinance.
Commissioner Justin Katz voiced his support for the ban Tuesday.
The ban will apply only to state-licensed therapists. To ensure its constitutionality, the law still allows unlicensed professionals, such as religious leaders, to engage in conversion therapy, the city said.

“It’s just an absurd idea that in 2016 — going on 2017 now — that people could believe that you could change someone’s sexuality through chastising them and berating them and making them hate themselves,” Katz said. “I’m happy that this ordinance has been trickling its way down Palm Beach County, and we’re able to solidify that we are protecting children regardless of their sexual orientation.” Amein!

America, Wake Up – Beware The Rise Of The Radicalized Right In American Politics!

white-national-socialist-kkk
White Nationalism and Christian Fundamentalism make up the Tea Party that rules the Republican Party.

It is said that perspective is everything. Here’s the mistake a lot of people are making about the Electoral College result in this 2016 election for the U.S. President: Despite popular mainstream belief, the racism, religious bigotry, and everyday sexism that infiltrated this American election process is not the result of an unscrupulous and manipulative opportunist called Donald Trump running for President. He’s just out to enrich his name and his businesses, regardless the cost and deception required to do so. The racism, religious bigotry, and everyday sexism is really a result of seventy years of politicized religious fundamentalism and white nationalism in the United States of America. And we can see this clearly in who is clamoring for positions of power in the next presidential administration’s government. The likes of Bannon and Pence, Flynn, Pompeo, Sessions, and DeVos. The ones that don’t make it to the inner circle are still there, as well, and are seeking presence in the sidelines, like Kobach, Giuliani, and Spencer.

If you are not scared by the choices being made for a #TrumpAdministration, then you are woefully ignorant on the history of these individuals and on American history itself, factually and demonstrably!

Compared to these deeply invested movements, the Alt-Right and Religious-Right, that is actively surrounding a Trump presidency, Trump is nothing more than a small time want-to-be autocrat with international and domestic business conflicts to the role of President. He is seeking solely to increase his personal influence at the expense of the People, and is already disregarding institutionalized barriers meant to prevent this. (Truly, you’d have to be utterly self-deceived or a fool not to see this!) This is where the likes of Kushner and Ross, Mnuchin and DeVos, come into his picture. He is making deliberate selections! But, his election by electoral proxy alone and against the voted will of the People, is not the real concern. The very present and real threat to the preservation of the United States of America as a democracy is literally all around him, and we really need to stand up as a nation against his presidency before the Electoral College decides it should be.

Here’s some trivia questions: Do you know that the Trump guy not only has real estate around the world, but is invested in the DAPL project, too? Do you know he has stock in the very companies whose people he is placing into key positions within his proposed administration? Think carefully about this! The Electoral College is set to make Trump President-elect on December 19th, despite the majority General Election vote for Hillary Clinton, if we don’t protest the Electoral College to do the “right” thing, the ethical thing. This wanna-be President is a deliberate ignorant on world affairs. Do you not think others will be doing the thinking and motivating for him, while he looks for ways to publicly glorify himself and focuses on how to get even richer? Look who he’s chosen to guide him on military action, the likes of Flynn and Mattis – two war hawks that have a record of viewing regime change as the answer to Middle East problems, and are both anti-Islamic in mindset (anti- “political Islam” and “Islamic extremism”, key word in both is “Islam” the religion)!

It’s not alarmism to say that we are in jeopardy as a democratic nation! The Alt-Right and Religious-Right have been working for this day of rising mainstream influence for decades, now. Making it appear to the public eyes that their stance is a fight for the preservation of personal liberty and conservative values, when it’s always been a fight for religious dominion over the civil affairs of this nation. For the Religious Right, they have been at this since 1945, and it’s been since the Civil Rights movement with the white Nationalists. Together, they are the Tea Party that has hijacked the Republican party. They are the ones that motivated the separatists/supremacists and Christian church-goers into lobbying their communities very hard for white votes for Donald Trump. The disillusioned buying-in by the jobless and impoverished Rust Belt voters is only a distraction from this, the Trump guy’s real base of popularity. And if America does *not* want to become yet another separatist nation governed by theocracy in this world – then, American citizens, we need to wake up, speak up, and act now!

These extremist movements in the United States are not playing around, they’ve been battling heavily against the pluralism that our nation is founded on – and doing so with a lot of monetary support – in the halls of our nation’s courts and legislative offices for decades now. Empowered by legal and legislative victories, they are convinced of the “rightness” of their cause, and no governmental structure is inviolably immune to radicalized change. Not even the American democracy, and it is to our folly to think else wise! In their minds, the United States of America is and should be a white Christian nation “under God” and “for God,” that is diametrically at odds with Islamic nations and communist nations around this world. Those of us citizens who value and support pluralism and humanism in national civil affairs are literally “the enemies of God” in their Right-wing rhetoric – and this is no joke.

We are literally seeing the same thing play out here in America that has been playing out all across the Middle East where the United States has had its forces. The only difference being, between the two, that it is white Christians who are nationalist-minded here and sectarian-oriented Arab Muslims over there – and we should rightfully be very concerned! America, we need to wake up fast and see the societal and political fields a lot more clearly, have a bit more historical and societal clarity, before it’s too late to do anything about it. The continuance of American democracy *is* at stake, if history is to be any judge, for we won’t be the constitutional-envisioned ‘of the People and by the People’ United States as a democratically-structured theocracy at endless war with its neighbors! As the radical Right said this election, the time is now to be doing something about this. #NotMyPresident #TrumpProtests #UnpaidProtestor #election2016

Donald Trump Is Choosing His Cabinet. Here’s the Latest Shortlist.
http://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2016/us/politics/donald-trump-administration.html?_r=0
Donald J. Trump is (presently) the president-elect. Want to know what it means? We’re working on a guide to keep you updated, right in your inbox.

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For a better understanding of the thinking of the political Religious-Right in the United States of America, take a look at Christian economic historian and publisher Gary North’s book:

“Political Polytheism: The Myth of Pluralism”
http://www.garynorth.com/freebooks/docs/21f2_47e.htm
Gary Kilgore North is an American Christian Reconstructionist theorist and economic historian. North has authored or coauthored over fifty books on topics including Christian theology, economics, and history.

“Political pluralism is not simply a political philosophy: it is a theology. it is American’s civil religion. … This is the problem. God-fearing Christian Americans have been told that the Constitution teaches the absolute separation of Church and State. They have been told correctly. But what they have not been told is precisely where it says this. It does not say this in the First amendment. The First amendment says only that Congress shall make no law regarding religion or the free exercise thereof. So, where does the Constitution prohibit a Christian America? In a section that has been ignored by scholars for so long that it is virtually never discussed-the key provision that transformed American into a secular humanist nation. But it took 173 years to do this: from 1788 until 1961. Political Polytheism discusses this crucial provision in detail-the first Christian book to do so in over two centuries.

But if Christ is Lord over the United States, yet the citizens of the United States either publicly deny this or are afraid to affirm it publicly, and if the elected politicians and appointed officers of the nation are legally prohibited from pursuing the implications of this fact, then what does this mean for the nation? It means that God intends to bring American under judgment. Why? Because this nation was originally founded as a Christian nation, covenanted with God, and then it broke the covenant. The results are predictable: And it shall be, if thou do at all forget the LORD thy God, and walk after other gods, and serve them and worship them, I testify against you this day that ye shall surely perish, As the nations which the LORD destroyeth before your face, so shall ye perish; because ye would not be obedient unto the voice of the LORD your God. (Deuteronomy 8:19-20)”

Only one problem, Gary North – The United States of America was *not* founded as a “Christian nation,” at all! That is, according to the verifiable historical facts in our nation’s archives. The United States of America was founded as a colonist secession from the rule of Britain over a dispute about unfair forced taxation without representation. The United States’ constitution is a direct product of 1700’s European ‘Era of Enlightenment (Age of Reason)’ ideology and Deist religious philosophy. The beliefs of this time, which are enshrined in the United States constitution, were a government that is ran by the collective will “of the People” as ultimate national authority, and a separation of governmental powers into three branches of government (executive, legislative, and judicial) to ensure that this nation not become an oligarchy ruled by a specific monarchy or religion. Hence, the Establishment and Free Exercise clauses in the U.S. constitution, along with the No Religious Test clause for political/governmental office further in.

In contrast to the teaching of modern fundamentalist Christians who have re-invented history with hermeneutic spins, the United States was *not* founded on the religious beliefs of the Christian Pilgrims (Puritans) that settled in America in the early 1600’s. Though, fundamentalist Christians of modern times would have us believe this, and have worked hard to teach this over the last several decades. Those Pilgrims, for all their religiosity, yes, did indeed believe that the American continent which they settled on belonged to them, rather than belonging to the “savages” (Native Americans) who they mercilessly fought and slaughtered for control of the land. Yes, they possessed the idea of America as their “promised land,” while they gave thanks to their Christian god for the successful annihilation and enslavement of the indigenous people of this land. These are indeed in the historical writings of the colony leaders.

If this is the legacy to which modern Christian fundamentalism wishes to derive their belief in an original Judeo-Christian constitutional covenant for the land to be eventually known as the United States, then they are definitely inline with the over all history of Christianity around the world – that of ‘convert or die’ being the operative religious social methodology. The modern Christian theologies of Dominion-ism, Creationism, and Biblical Capitalism have their roots in 20th Century American Christian thinking, far removed from the thinking of the Founders of this American nation. Founders who would be appalled at the very idea of this nation being “a Christian nation” that is under the rule of a theistic Christian god. And this is unalterable historical fact! To preserve a national democracy “of the People” is to keep church separated from state, and uphold “liberty and justice” for all this nation’s citizens, regardless their religious and political personal leanings or lack thereof. Every citizen has a voice, and it is oppression to stifle the needed hearing of this voice!

For those interested, here is a source for studying the literature of early American colonization:

American Literature/Colonial Period (1620s-1776)
https://en.wikibooks.org/wiki/American_Literature/Colonial_Period_(1620s-1776)
Many American literature textbooks cover the colonial period genre by genre. The danger in doing this is time distortion. This period of literature spans almost 300 years, longer by far than all of the other periods of literature put together. The other problem with covering this period by genre is that many of its most famous writers wrote in more than one genre, so the same writer must be considered multiple times. A final disadvantage is the proximity of many of the genres to another genre. For example, how different can a work in philosophy be from a religious tract when a religious background is assumed by the author? Many political writers touch heavily on history, and vice versa. Given these considerations, it is more fruitful to cover this period diachronically while keeping possible genres in mind.
Aside from span of time, another consideration that makes this period unique from all the others is that the writers in this period had no idea they were writing anything that could be classified as American literature. These writers were mostly British, and all were heavily indebted to British literature writing conventions long since established in the motherland. No other period of American literature is as derivative of English literature as the colonial period.

There is also the Cambridge History of American Literature:, Volume 1; Volumes 1590-1820 to reference for scholarly studies of this historical time period.

For those interested, here is a source for studying the ‘Era of Enlightenment’ and ‘Age of Reason’ European philosophies that informed the thoughts of those forming an independent nation from Britain in North America:

History Channel – Era of Enlightenment, Age of Reason, Scientific Revolution
http://www.history.com/topics/enlightenment
European politics, philosophy, science and communications were radically reoriented during the course of the “long 18th century” (1685-1815) as part of a movement referred to by its participants as the Age of Reason, or simply the Enlightenment. Enlightenment thinkers in Britain, in France and throughout Europe questioned traditional authority and embraced the notion that humanity could be improved through rational change. The Enlightenment produced numerous books, essays, inventions, scientific discoveries, laws, wars and revolutions. The American and French Revolutions were directly inspired by Enlightenment ideals and respectively marked the peak of its influence and the beginning of its decline. … It was also a time of religious (and anti-religious) innovation, as Christians sought to reposition their faith along rational lines and deists and materialists argued that the universe seemed to determine its own course without God’s intervention. … The Enlightenment ultimately gave way to 19th-century Romanticism.

#TeaParty #WhiteNationalism #ReligiousRight #USConstitution #WhitePrivilege #NoDAPL #BlackLivesMatter #NativeLivesMatter #LatinoLivesMatter #LGBTQ #Equality #EmpoweringWomen #EverydaySexism

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We need Truth and Reconciliation in the United States of America. #NativeLivesMatter and #BlackLivesMatter in the United States of America! Time for white America to share it’s #WhitePrivilege with the rest of the citizens of this nation.

I so wish I could have taken a picture of it to show, an SUV window that sums up the nature of Southern attitudes in the Un-united States of America in our present 21st Century. Imagine a black Dodge SUV and on this SUV’s back window is a large confederate flag, a white Christian cross, and a #TrumpPence2016 campaign set of stickers, all placed deliberately upon the back window to make a clear statement.

It proves a point being made: That the evidence of the surge of Evangelical-Alt-Right-ism in the Un-united States of America, seeking to turn America into a white Christian Nationalist nation, is everywhere! I see it near everyday in so many public places living here in the South. It is the very reason that the Electoral College was skewed this #election2016 toward voting against the clear voted will of the People, by voting in partisan allegiance on December 19th for the loser, that #Trump guy, of the November 8th general election.

As a nation, what are we going to do about this? We need #TruthandReconciliation in the United States of America, like has been happening in South Africa and in Canada. We need #RestorativeJustice in the United States of America, and a recognition that racism disproportionately affects all aspects of living as an ethnic minority in America. And, we need to support the #NationalPopularVote to remove the disenfranchisement of most voters votes across this country and, especially within the cities, in favor of the electoral decision of a few white majority populated states who get to decide the presidential election for the rest of us.

We need Truth and Reconciliation in the United States of America. #NativeLivesMatter and #BlackLivesMatter in the United States of America! Time for white America to share it’s #WhitePrivilege with the rest of the citizens of this nation.

Update 29 Dec 2016 with above 3rd post.

Putting this Election 2016 into Honest Perspective

we-the-people-of-the-usaPutting This Election 2016 Into Honest Perspective (What Has America Done?!)

Remember, that Trump guy did not win the Presidential race, he outright *lost* it by over 2.86 Million Direct Votes of the People against him. In total, 73.6 Million U.S. Citizens rejected Donald John Trump as the next desired President for the United States. He won by Electoral College only! The Electoral College is a system enacted in slavery days, and was designed to give Southern states – whose majority population was slaves who could not vote – a chance at winning national elections. This Electoral system is now being used in modern times to give unfair advantage to white voters, by usurping the effect of minority votes across this country. It disproportionately favors a select few number of states that are the majority decider in who is elected to the Presidency, regardless of what the Direct Vote (the “Popular Vote”) turns out to be.

Why does neither the Democrat or Republican party, the two dominant parties in the United States, do anything about the Electoral College (like get rid of it!)? The answer is blatantly obvious. It is because both are predominantly white in constituency, and both parties are about *winning* the election, first and foremost, with the expressed will of the People that they campaigned on coming in second. It will require American citizens en masse to uproot this system that rejects the expressed will of voting U.S. citizens! The only question, is when are the United States citizens going to get pissed off enough to truly say enough’s enough?! When will this happen?

That Trump guy lost the the Presidential race by Direct Vote – clearly – and has been rewarded the victory by Electoral College, regardless. The majority of voting U.S. citizens voted against that Trump guy’s nomination to the Presidency of the United States. And the Democrat and Republican parties – who were *both* #NeverTrump during the election – bowed down immediately to the Electoral results alone – and have been telling the American public to accept the Electoral College results and to now come together in unity around a racist, misogynist, xenophobic individual with clear business conflicts of interest as President. #NotMyPresident #TrumpProtests That Trump guy is a secretive and habitually lying autocrat in the making, whose only clear and apparent motivation in life is to enrich his name and his businesses. And what better way to do this than to have power and insight of a president?!

Now, add to this who that Trump guy has surrounded himself with. That Pence guy is a Christian fundamentalist that believes in and pushes pseudoscientific Creationism. If you don’t understand what this means, let me make it very clear. He believes the earth is 10,000 years old and was created by a imaginary god found in a sacred book of his religion, which he believes is actively involved in and controlling the affairs of this planet – thus, you don’t need to worry about climate change (all is the god’s plan), science has no evidence and is only a philosophical theory, thus, is to be rejected as capable of guidance, and Ken Ham’s cultic pseudoscience called Creationism should be taught in public schools along reputable and evidential sciences. Not to mention, being a Christian fundamentalist, that Pence guy has a history of attacking women right’s, supporting scientifically debuncted homosexual reparative therapy, and the constitutionally protected freedom of citizenry to not be legislated by Christian religious morals in public law.

If this wasn’t in itself enough of a national and constitutional problem, the two of them together, look at the other key individuals that the Trump guy has surrounded himself with. That Bannon guy is also a business man with secretive behaviors regarding his business activities, which will not be in Blind Trust anymore than that Trump guy’s businesses will, and that Bannon guy is a known and well documented racist white nationalist, with interests in literally segregating the United States of America into white America and that other America. Then, there is that Kushner guy, who also – like the Trump guy – is born into wealth through his daddy’s real estate businesses and by having the keys to that Trump guy’s business is financially in bed with that Trump guy deeply. Now, he is an Orthodox Jew, which means that he’s going to be very sympathetic to that Pence guy’s Christian fundamentalism and Creationism pseudoscience. So, the rich are about to get richer, the hopeful poor that voted for him are going to be sorely disappointed, and minorities of all types across this country are going suffer more from white nationalism and religion these next four years.

Understand, America, what you have actually done! You have given the less desirable business elite (the previously not as influential anti- Gates and Soros types), with a history of racism and religious bigotry, the top positions of the United States government. A nation that is supposed to be a democracy of the People (all the citizens together), that keeps religion separate from public governance. And, you’ve given the white nationalists and religious fundamentalists a seat at the presidential table that they’ve been salivating over for seventy years. By enough Americans voting for them, emboldened by the free expression of their racist views toward fellow citizens of the United States, both bigots and religious fundamentalists are in ideal power to establish racially motivated theocratic “law and order” upon all Americans through their election by Electoral College only. The majority of U.S. citizens who voted had enough sense to not vote for this, but we have yet to step up as a nation of people and demand fundamental change in how government is to be approached and decided in this country! What has happened here is nothing new.

Since the rise of the politically active Christian fundamentalist Right in America in 1945, our democracy as a nation governed “by the People” has been under direct assault legislatively. The more progressive we become nationally through the centuries of minorities in America fighting for liberty and justice, the more white America becomes defensive and attempts to turn back the clock – to a more golden white dominated age of American history. Adding to this white America’s refusal to act on #RestorativeJustice and #TruthandReconciliation, which will directly address white racism against minorities in the United States, we are now facing the possibility of a further move away from the anti-monarchy/anti-church three branches of government ‘Era of Enlightenment (Age of Reason)’ democracy of the People based in Deism, that the Founders established in 1776 – and a direct move toward white Judeo-Christian fundamentalist democratically-structured theocracy in the United States of America. If we truly do value the Constitution of the United States of America as citizens, then we cannot let this happen. We must become – every one of us – socially and politically involved in usurping this effort through educating the citizens of our communities, through constant legislative battles, and winning in court. American democracy itself is honestly at stake!

#election2016 #electoralcollege #BlackLivesMatter #NativeLivesMatter #LGBTQ #Equality #EmpoweringWomen #EverydaySexism

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2016 Election Results:

Direct Vote (Popular Vote), 8 Nov: Clinton, 65,844,610 – Trump, 62,979,636 – All Others*, 7,804,213
The People of the United States chose Hillary Clinton for President by 2,864,974 majority vote on 8 November 2016! (- as of final count, 20 December 2016) Over 73.6 million voters (73,648,823) out of 136.6 million (136,628,459) did not choose Donald Trump for the presidency. With President Barack Hussein Obama (an African-American) as the only candidate in United States history to receive the most Direct Votes for President from the citizens of the United States (65,915,795 votes for his second term election to President), Hillary Rodham Clinton (a European Woman) has now received in 2016 the second largest number of citizen’s votes for President in the entire history of U.S. Presidential elections (she was only 71,185 votes shy of tying President Obama’s historic vote record – the citizens of the United States clearly made their choice known in this election, and it was *not* that Trump guy)!

*All Others – Suppressed “third party” candidates that the U.S. citizens who were brave enough to vote for real change in the political environment of the United States dared to actually vote for (despite the Democrat and Republican parties’ insistence that this are wasted votes!).

Electoral College Vote, 19 Dec: (expected vote) Trump, 306 – Clinton, 232 (actual vote) Trump, 304 – Clinton, 227**
The ruling partisan political and governmental establishment chose that Trump guy as President-elect on 19 December 2016 (UNLESS THEY DON’T, and pass voting the LOSER into office to the Republican controlled HOUSE) , against the majority vote rule of the United States voting citizens. This action on the part of the Electoral College has demonstrated that the Electoral College has become nothing more than a partisan “rubber-stamp” system in the United States of America, and no longer reflects the intent of the Founders (which was to keep a candidate like Trump, who preys on populous notions and has no qualifications for the job of President, from becoming President, by voting for a candidate that has the necessary qualifications (even if its against the will of the People, who have been duped in their direct popular vote).

The protests need continue, battles in court need to be waged, and pressure put upon the ruling political parties to end the Electoral College, a system born of slavery days and used in modern times to give white votes an advantage over minority votes in the United States of America!

**-This is the highest number of what has become called “faithless electors” – for not voting for the established candidate of either the Republican or Democrat parties that have monopolized the political system of the United States – in U.S. history, with three electors in Washington voting for Colin L. Powell and one elector for Faith Spotted Eagle, one elector in Texas voting for Ron Paul and one for John Kasich, and one elector in Hawaii for Bernie Sanders – despite the tremendous pressure put upon all these electors by the ruling political parties of the United States to not vote for any other candidate or any other party other than the candidate of the party dominated the particular state. The “winner take all” electoral votes system of some states disenfranchises the voters who have cast their vote for the majority losing candidate of the these states, and the forcing electors to “pledge allegiance” to a particular candidate before the electoral vote of some states (who replace during the election any who defy their made pledge) is actually unconstitutional per the 12th Amendment.

Hopefully, next election 2020, there will be no electoral college to rob the citizen’s vote, and people will feel free to vote for more parties than the ruling two political parties that want to tell you how to vote!

https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/133Eb4qQmOxNvtesw2hdVns073R68EZx4SfCnP4IGQf8/htmlview?sle=true#gid=19

#election2016 #notmypresident #trumpprotests #nationalpopularvote

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Following below is a 7 Dec 2016 addition to this post:

Why is THIS not a national holiday? December 6, 1865: The 13th Amendment ratification day. #BlackLivesMatter #TruthandReconciliation in the United States!

Here is an article written in 1865 on the Southern influence garnered upon the U.S. Government by establishing an Electoral College in the 1780’s: “In our country the bitter fruits of national injustice and oppression were apparent at an early day. From 1789 to 1861—a period of more than seventy years—the Southern lords of the lash, through the concessions made to them in the Constitution, were almost as much masters of the general Government as of the slaves on their plantations.”… a direct reference to the Electoral College system …”Their property in human flesh, under a vicious and anti-republican rule of representation, increased their political power to such an extent that, by acting always as a unit, and adroitly taking advantage of party divisions at the North, they were able, from the very beginning, to control the legislation of the country for the support and perpetuity of their hateful system…. and so watchful were the guardians of the system, and so imperious in their demands in its behoof, that they were always able to prevent the adoption by Congress of even constitutional measures that were likely to expose it to the slightest peril. Subserviency to the slave power became the fixed habit of politicians and parties at the North.… Nothing could better illustrate the power which slavery had acquired over the Government than the hesitation of an anti-slavery Congress to undertake this work of expurgation and reform.”

December 6, 1865: The 13th Amendment, Prohibiting Slavery, Is Ratified
https://www.thenation.com/article/december-6-1865-the-thirteenth-amendment-prohibiting-slavery-is-ratified/
“In our country the bitter fruits of national injustice and oppression were apparent at an early day.”
With Georgia’s ratification of the 13th Amendment on this day in 1865, slavery was finally declared incompatible with the ideals of the United States Constitution, and was prohibited. In August, as the measure, passed by Congress the previous January, made its way through the state legislatures for ratification, a month-old publication called The Nation commented on the meaning of emancipation for American democracy.

With the Civil War and passing of the 13th Amendment, that outlawed chattel slavery only, came the rise of the second form of slavery in the United States – state owned “convict leasing” programs that mass imprisoned African Americans and leased these prisoners to Southern industries. This to-prison-pipeline for black Americans has continued in one form or another all the way to the present day. #RestorativeJustice is due! #ElectoralCollege #NationalPopularVote

On this Yom Kippur 5777

On this Yom Kippur 5777:

I regret all the years I’ve been absorbed with who I am, and not enough being focused on what I am. For this, I apologize. I intend to be more consciously aware of this, daily, from now on.

I am a member of the human species upon this planet, a highly intelligent and creative primate species. That, sadly, leans toward emotionally self-centered indifference towards others much of the time. It is our human frailty, which we each must learn in our own way to evolve from.

As a member of the human species, I not only must be attentive to us and what we are doing as humans upon this planet, but to the other living species we share this planet with. All life is nefesh chayah, not one is more significant or better in any way to the other. We are all important and significant members in the planetary tree of life.

I regret not being more of a teacher on this throughout my life, not bringing our world closer to the awareness of this fundamental self-evidence. But, without excuses, I had to struggle with self-awakening first. It was a painful and long process, and I’m probably still not done with this, yet. I intend to be more socially active in healing this world, now and into the future.

Let’s try something today, and we might as well make it every day. Reflect for a moment, and see what pains us. Simply acknowledge it and apologize. Then, actively strive to not be a contributor to this from now on. Let us step outside the fictive ideologies of humankind for just a moment, and see our humanity as we really are. It’s life changing.

#YomKippur #Humans

I was taught from youth to believe that …

I was taught from youth, indoctrinated really, to believe that religion is the reason for morals. That without religion, societies would be without morals and egregiously decadent. For much of my life, it did not even occur to me to question this taught in youth belief. I went through life simply assuming that it must be true by inherent default, and that this is why religion and being religious is needed. I saw life this way even when I began to question the honesty, reasoning, and truthfulness of religion and religion’s version of human history. I saw life this way, because I’ve always known “religion is the reason for morals” as true, and knew of no other way to look at it – no other alternative or option. That is, until I started studying academic history and archaeology and psychology, and so forth. That is, until I started to travel around the world and experience human communities outside the worldview of the one I was raised in.

Before my awakening to the indoctrinated state of my mind, I knew that within my own community and within my own country that, even with the emphasis on religious upbringing and involvement and insistence that religious values and morals be upheld, still yet within my very own society are examples too numerous to count of people and groups doing the most egregious of acts. Often, most – if not all – of them were raised in a religious-emphasized indoctrinating culture. So, how is it, I began to question, that so many still end up or choose to do “immorally”, despite religion’s ready presence? Even now, with my now beginning to question life’s perspectives, I still was yet too ready to just easily and readily accept the common religious explanations for this without much further thought. But then, something eye-opening and wonderful happened. I began to travel!

humanistic-evolutionTaking up the life of a traveler exposes you to a variety of different cultures, governments, religions, philosophies, and so forth – many of which are very different from the one we individually grow up in. In my travels, I discovered that the most moral countries I’ve ever had the pleasure of being in or exposed to happen to be the least religious. I began to ask myself, how possibly could this be so? If religion is the source of morals, how is it countries that reject religion could be more democratic, ethical as a populace, have lower crime rates, have more general compassion for the welfare of others, and be more eco-conscious friendly? And, in my travels, this being contrasted starkly with being in countries where religion dominates and controls everything. There are more punishments for perceived crimes, a greater disparity between women and men, as well between one race/ethnicity/religion and another, a constant threat of violence and warfare in the streets, a general lack of empathy among the populace, and an utter lack of regard for the environment – the future of our humanity, if taken care of.

With my travels came the slow but sure breakdown of the religious indoctrination of youth deep within me, the slow but assured realization and discovery that I had only a “taught” version of truth – a very specific way in which to look at the world. Most importantly, I discovered that the way I had been raised to view the world is not the only way in which to view this world. There are other ways, outside of religion’s input and influence, by which to view the world much more factually and accurately and much more historically accurately. I had begun to discover a world based in embracing reasoning, critical thinking, emotional intelligence, and ethics without theology and a theology’s added god-concept. I learned in my travels and studies that forming some kind of non-theistic ethics is the natural inherent state that we humans think in, and historically such embraced thoughts work their way into religious thought and belief soon or, as is more often the case, a very long time after.

I became very aware that morals do not come from religion. Rather, religion simply reflects the non-theistic ethical/moral values the religion was developed in. In time, due to secular free-thinking influence upon it, religions slowly transform and evolve – always very resistant-ly so – to more moral states and stances that generally contradict the fundamental texts the religion is born upon. It is the justification of enlightenment and the after claim that religion thought of it first that is used to keep the religiously indoctrinated into believe that a religion’s way is best and religion is the reason for morals. In everyday reality, though, non-theistic non-religious secularist thoughts on human ethics is the real reason for the changes in societies. We, as human beings, are inherently good without god, and are inherently prone to forming societies based upon beneficial laws and beliefs rooted in an ever evolving understanding of what is ethical. And this is so, whether a society embraces religion or not. In fact, it is easily demonstrable that societies that not religious – that do not reject nor endorse religion, are the most quickest countries to develop a higher standard of ethical/moral living and place national emphasis on this.

In the religion I was raised in, adherence to this religion’s morals, beliefs, and religious laws is necessary, all to ensure that I have a chance at entering the world to come. I no longer believe that this world actually exists. Rather, it is a clever and well designed imaginary religious fabrication taught to us to ensure that we remain on the religious path throughout our lives. For, if one is taught this and believes this early enough in life – can imagine this world-to-come for themselves, then this world takes on a believable life or reality of its own in our heads. It our fabrication, our belief now, and for most holds a bit of reality within us throughout our lives. But, through un-indoctrinating from a religious view of reality, I have come to learn to observe reality just as it obviously is. Without any human imaginative fabrications added to it. I no longer believe in an afterlife, for I no longer have a reason to believe in it. For me, personally, it is no longer necessary to embrace the social presence of this human imagined concept and, instead, devote my time to finding what joy and amazement that I can amidst the uncertainties and tragedies that equally accompany “living life”.

When we live, we live in joy and suffering – both extremes being part and parcel to the experience of living itself, of being alive. When we die, we simply die – and all that we individually were for a moment simply fades away, atoms and energy re-dispersing throughout the fabric of the universe. From non-existence we came, were formed into a breathing body-mind, and into non-existence we return. And this natural order of things is totally alright. Understanding this, we can realize that it is a good life! We are but just a momentary expression, a grand expression of life, in this universe comprised with life – and even the universe has a beginning and an end. To be no more itself, once its time has finally come. Why should it somehow be any different for us, just because we can fantasize and hope for this?

The ability to believe in a god is a uniquely human capability. For it is we humans that have created our imagined gods and goddesses – every last one of them, our sacred words and religious rites, and even the various words themselves for this not directly see-able or know-able thing we call “God”. We first learn about god from other human beings, and then created our own personal model of this imagined god from what they teach and what we conceive within our own imaginations. This doesn’t make god real, it only makes our expressions about the reality of a god real. And, as I’ve come to be aware of, we don’t need and never have needed, really, a god to be good and decent and productive and compassionate and attentive human beings. We only need to be observant of our collective-ness and our very human condition. This alone is enough to stir the need for ethics and reason within the human mind, powerful motivators that translate to behaviors and actions that we idealize as “morally good”.

I, like generally every human on this planet, am mystified by our very existence as a species. We are intricately unique and complex. All of us together, the life forms living and reproducing on this planet. As humans, we have a special ability to be self-aware of our individual animal reality upon this planet. An awareness of this reality that has stirred creative abilities within us, such as abstract thinking, language, music, art, and so forth. This, plus the discovery that we survive better learning to live together against our natural self-oriented survival of the fittest tendency, has led to our cultures, civil ethics, and religious mores and beliefs. We are amazing, even at our cellular level! As we discover ourselves more and more, it is no wonder how we can come to the imagined conclusion that some god or goddess exists that created this world and us. For, we know as the creation, or more accurately the evolution, that we ourselves could not ever create on such an intricate level as this, and probably never will be able to. We can learn to limited-ly control and manipulate, within the limits imposed by this reality itself, but this is about it.

So, we are left mystified, and left to our imaginations to fill in what we do not know, but ponder on. If it is thought of in any of our languages, it is of human origins. Once we’ve accepted this, it is easier to embrace the reality we experience – whether we find it fair or unfair – and accept the natural order of things and our place in it. Where we are working from a reality based awareness of the world, and doing good in this world simply because the opportunity is there before us to do this. We don’t need a reason or justification more. As to the propensity towards believing in and worshiping gods, the gods we create, I respect the need but encourage the avoidance of the archaic religious trappings that are so stubbornly connected to this. I don’t believe anymore in a human made god, but do recognize the miraculous-ness of our intricate existence. I acknowledge that this is beyond my limited conceptual understanding, so I can only be in awe of it, for while I have breath and mind in which to do this. I don’t believe anything more needs to be added to this awe of ever growing awareness, and seek to better myself for while I am alive as a result of this. But, if I were to believe in and worship a human imagined god of some sort, I would have to say from looking at reality that this god presence is feminine somehow in its nature.

How do I come to this conclusion, you might be asking? It’s pretty obvious, really. Men do not create life. Rather, we contribute to and participate in life. We are in our nature pre-destined towards service to life and death. Even our religions so often reflect this, even though man is put on top and in charge and woman relegated as a lessor. But, the reality, though, is pretty clear and obvious! It is women that receive into themselves and, then, birth from this more new life. There are only a few species exceptions to this obvious reality about life, but for most, including the human species, this is the obvious reality. I’m saying that, if I were to believe in a god, I wouldn’t think this god is a woman. Rather, I would think that god, if a supreme creator of all life exists, is a feminine presence. A life-giver, which we perceive by what we are most familiar with – a woman. A male lives and, even, exists for a woman’s creative life-giving need and benefit. This is the inherent nature of our human animal species.

If we look at the universe, we can see that it was birthed from a great cosmic womb. In time the universe will grow old and perish, but just not as quickly as we species who are not so fortunate to share in the magnanimous lifespan of the universe. The fundamental purpose for our being birthed into this universe is to continue this expression of life re-birthed. How we express our existence, as living beings, is simply how we choose to express it. This expression is unique to the evolutionary development of each species that thrives and survives for a time upon this planet, and within this universe. If I were to ascribe a god to this marvel of intricate life incarnate, I would have to say this god is a she and call her “Goddess”. It only makes sense, by my observation of this world. But, like with all human conceptualized and imagined gods, I would have to worship her knowing that in me is the source of her creation. And we don’t need a religion for this.

Who I Am. … And, What Am I?

We all have an identity based on socially recognized labels. Since you’re visiting, I am assuming you would like to know mine. So, here they are, my socially recognized labels:

I am a human male who is named Joseph (pronounced Yo-sef).

I am a friend and husband to my wife, and a daddy to my children.

(Now, done with the identifiers, to the big three: )

I am a non-religious Jew, of the secularist humanist variety. Meaning, I am non-theistic in my civil and ritual expressions of Jewishness and Jewish history, culture, and literature.

I am a democratic capitalistic Socialist, who believes that social resources should be fully dedicated to the basic subsistence welfare of all humans and to the protection of our planet’s future livelihood. I truly believe (and envision!) that every human is inherently entitled to free housing, food, education, medical services, and recreation.

I am a Humanist, an ethics-based, social progressive who believes that humans should work for a living (aka, jobs) that serve to ensure the democratic socialist purpose. Choosing work to contribute to the socially shared resources, rather than needing a job just to be able to survive in basic subsistence ways within society (our present lopsided capitalistic system, that too easily favors the wealthy at the expense of the poor).

(Well, now that we’ve got the big ethnic/cultural, political, and religious three out of the way, let’s continue on: )

I am a polyamorous oriented individual, a natural bisexual who is evenly attracted to both genders. I have always seen the value in a marriage between many (a close several). I have always supported the civil institution of marriage, and the success of marriage relationships – regardless the genders or orientations or the number of those involved in these marriages.

I am by inherent inclination a social nudist, whether I am able to live socially naked or not. Unfortunately, it is most often not. But, like everyone else, I am always nakedly and fully present in (and out) of my clothes, and I promote body acceptance and self-esteem. My nudism is ritually and spiritually grounded, rooted deep in ancient traditional Jewish thought and teaching.

(Good! The two socially scary ones are addressed*, now to continue: )

I am a socially outspoken reason-based thinker, who thinks progressively about the future of our humanity.

I have an interest in activist based work that furthers the advancement of egalitarian and reason based humanistic ethics and lifestyles within all societies.

unashamed-human-jtf-clothed
Click on photo only if you’re not body shy and appreciate being human. clothed pic

I promote living life authentically and without shame. A life based in empathy and sharing/caring. A life based in mutually shared responsible and community based living.

I have a “thang” for all things Linux. So, if we share common ground here, too, then we’ll have one more thing to talk about.

I have always had a deep interest in multi-lingualism, and truly do admire those who have mastered three, five, eight, or more languages fluently.

This reveals who I am, but you’ll still need to learn, now, what I am. This latter requires connection and friendship on a much deeper interpersonal level, over a sufficient period of time.

Now, my question for you is: What are your socially recognized labels? In other words, who are you? Why have you chosen to visit my online pages? Do you intend to be an actively involved friend? And, once we’ve defined all this, what are you? This is the most important question one can answer in his/her life.

Joseph Tsefanyahu Farkasdi