Life in a small town

Not by bread alone … sometimes we have fish.

Great Supper Tonight – Lemon Dill Pickerel … (also called Walleye in the States, and Dore in Quebec) … in a cream sauce. And actually no bread allowed in a keto diet.

Cooks up as mild, flaky fish fillets. A number of different types of white fish will work, and you can increase the recipe easily.

Try Pickerel, Whitefish, Perch, Bass, Walleye, Halibut, Cod, Haddock, probably even Jackfish (Northern Pike?), if you can get them big enough, called Slough Sharks around here, etc. Serve with a white and wild rice blend, or with Cauliflower rice if you are going keto, or a Kale salad.

I like it with Pickerel and I get my Pickerel from a fisherman at Primrose Lake, Saskatchewan … He calls it pickerel … but read on, maybe it is really a Jackfish. Anyway, the recipe …

1 cup all-purpose flour
4 tablespoons chopped fresh dill (or 4 tsp/20 mL dried dilweed)
1/2 tsp pinch salt
1/2 tsp pepper
4 pickerel fillets, skin on or skinless, about 2 – 2.5 lb (1000 g)
6 tablespoons butter
1 cup lemon juice

Lemon Mushroom Sauce:

2 tablespoon butter
2 cup finely chopped mushroom
1/2 cup chopped onion
2 clove garlic minced
2 cup whipping cream
2-3 tablespoon lemon juice
1/2 tsp salt

Method

Sauce: Lemon Mushroom Sauce: In saucepan, melt butter over medium heat; cook mushrooms and onion, stirring occasionally, for about 5 minutes or until onion is softened. Add garlic, cream, lemon juice and salt ; cook, stirring occasionally, for about 5-10 minutes or until reduced to half and thickened enough to coat back of spoon. Keep warm.

What I have been calling Pickerel all my life

Fry the fish: In shallow dish, mix together flour, dill, salt and pepper; gently press fillets into flour mixture, turning to coat and shaking off excess.

In large skillet, melt butter over medium heat; cook fillets, skin side up, for 4 minutes. Turn and sprinkle with lemon juice; cook for about 3 or 4 minutes (depends how thick the fillet is) or until fish flakes easily when tested with fork. Serve with sauce spooned over.

What I have been calling Jackfish all my life

And I was going to put one picture in but discovered that what I call Pickerel is identified as Walleye in American sources, and what I call Jackfish seems to be identified as Pickerel or Southern Pike in those same sources.

Obviously not the same fish by any measure, but probably both cook up fine in Lemon Dill Sauce. So I am calling a buddy to see if we are all out to lunch since we were kids – it is entirely possible … who knew.

UPDATE: yes indeed, I am not mistaken … what we have all called Pickerel or sometimes Dore is indeed the Perch-like fish identified above as Walleye or Pike Perch or Wall eyed Pike elsewhere. So I guess we are wrong and failed our taxidermy exam, but we have the consolation of all being wrong together for all our life.

That’s something at least, and is likely the state of affairs in a wide range of things we think we know. Absent swimming in the nude in chilly streams it is unlikely that this particular unknown will bite our ass.

enjoy

Cheers

Joe

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Life in a small town

Death by Defunction …

David Warren

David Warren

Just a couple of posts of interest by a blogger I follow …

First:

https://www.davidwarrenonline.com/2018/08/09/chronicles-of-defunction/

and then:

https://www.davidwarrenonline.com/2018/08/10/death-by-technology/

From the first link: “Alas, they had the Big Idea. Too, they were exemplars of temperance — workaholic instead, and probably incorruptible, in that sterile, short-sleeve, Puritan way. This is of the essence of liberalism and progress. It is a matter of stolid conviction, in opposition to all human experience. Everything is done consciously, nothing by instinct. Statistics are gratuitously gathered, and constantly reviewed. Everything must be managed, to the end of eliminating anything that smacks of a living tradition, spontaneity, or morale.

The (ancient) Greeks, who knew a thing or two about tyranny, felt that no decision should be made until it had become unavoidable, by when it would have been discussed, in a leisurely and therefore thorough way, sometimes drunk and sometimes sober. If the same conclusion is reached by both methods — by the coffee method and by the whisky method, as it were — then, and only then, should we dare proceed.”

Old Tomorrow Beer

Old Tomorrow Beer

This Old Dominion once had leaders of this type (Like the Greeks mentioned above), men who understood that one must never do today what can be reasonably put off until tomorrow.

Sir John Alexander Macdonald (11 January 1815 – 6 June 1891) was the first Prime Minister of Canada (1867–1873, 1878–1891). The dominant figure of Canadian Confederation, he had a political career which spanned almost half a century. His nickname to friend and foe alike was “Old Tomorrow”, or so I have read …

Now we are blessed with Boy Justin, and rushing to be first over the cliff because some Howler on Facebook told us “all right minded people know this is true” it is The. New. Direction. … but we still have good beer …

Cheers, and a smile on one’s face lightens up the whole miserable day …

Joe

The only way is underway …

Land is just a navigational hazard …

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Life in a small town

St. Michael and All Angels … the Angels of our better nature …

Snow”, by Kobudo, from the album “Ototabi”  (2013)

Came across some interesting books of poetry while browsing my Amazon account like I used to do as a young man in my favorite used book stores in Montreal and Ottawa, long before the days of internet and online anything.

Following the suggestions of their algorithm of choice on Amazon, or Netflix, or any other marketing bot attempting to sell us stuff, can really end up in a deep ditch of habit unless considered and actively rejected.

Sometimes it pays to actually go on a quest for something different than normal, thinking for oneself can be refreshing … found this poet … Malcolm Guite, interesting …

St. Michael, Archangel

St. Michael, Archangel

Michaelmas; also known as the Feast of Saints Michael, Gabriel, and Raphael, the Feast of the Archangels, or the Feast of Saint Michael and All Angels) is a minor Christian festival observed in some Western liturgical calendars on 29 September.

It is observed by Anglicans, Catholics, Lutherans, and Eastern Orthodox communions.

In some denominations a reference to a fourth angel, usually Uriel, is also added. In Christian angelology, the Archangel Michael is the greatest of all the Archangels and is honored for defeating Satan in the war in heaven.

He is one of the principal angelic warriors, seen as a protector against the dark of night, and the administrator of cosmic intelligence.

Michaelmas has also delineated time and seasons for secular purposes, as well, particularly in Britain and Ireland as one of the quarter days.

*****

St. Michael and All Angels

Michaelmas gales assail the waning year,
And Michael’s scale is true, his blade is bright.

St. Michael, Archangel

St. Michael, Archangel

He strips dead leaves, and leaves the living clear
To flourish in the touch and reach of light.

Archangel bring your balance, help me turn
Upon this turning world with you and dance
In the Great Dance.

Draw near, help me discern,
And trace the hidden grace in change and chance.

Angel of fire, Love’s fierce radiance,
Drive through the deep until the steep waves part;

Undo the dragon’s sinuous influence
And pierce the clotted darkness in my heart.

Unchain the child you find there, break the spell
And overthrow the tyrannies of Hell.

Malcolm Guite, This poem from “Sounding the Seasons: Seventy Sonnets for the Christian Year” (London: Canterbury Press, 2012). Found on Amazon.com,

*****

Cheers

Joe

… and miles to go before we sleep …

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Life in a small town, The Inner Struggle

Common Sense … & Wisdom …

“Deep Peace”, Bill Douglas, from the album of the same name, (1996)

Revisited my post from the 6th of July   especially the last half which was a quote from the Book of Wisdom … Wisdom 7 Douay-Rheims 1899 American Edition (DRA) Seems the primary English translation from the Latin Vulgate, the Douay-Rheims Catholic Bible is not “copyrighted”.

The Douay–Rheims Bible is a translation of the Bible from the Latin Vulgate into English made by members of the Catholic seminary English College, Douai, France. It is the foundation on which nearly all English Catholic versions are still based.

It was translated principally by Gregory Martin, an Oxford-trained scholar, working in the circle of English Catholic exiles on the Continent, under the sponsorship of William (later Cardinal) Allen.

The New Testament appeared at Rheims in 1582; the Old Testament at Douai in 1609. The translation, although competent, exhibited a taste for Latinisms that was not uncommon in English writing of the time but seemed excessive in the eyes of later generations. The New Testament influenced the Authorized Version.

Between 1749 and 1752, English bishop Richard Challoner substantially revised the translation with an aim to improve readability and comprehensibility. Bishop Challoner’s revised version is the one I use, published by TAN in the U.S. in 1989.

It was first published in America in 1790 by Mathew Carey of Philadelphia. Several American editions followed in the 19th and early 20th centuries; prominent among them the Douay-Rheims 1899 American Edition Version.

Wisdom 7: 1-3

*****

1 I myself also am a mortal man, like all others, and of the race of him, that was first made of the earth, and in the womb of my mother I was fashioned to be flesh.

2 In the time of ten months I was compacted in blood, of the seed of man, and the pleasure of sleep concurring.

3 And being born I drew in the common air, and fell upon the earth, that is made alike, and the first voice which I uttered was crying, as all others do.

*****

“I myself also am a mortal man, like all others”, I especially like this chapter of Wisdom. It speaks to the true commonality of mankind, rather than our stylish modern “Common Sense”.  Commonality transcends cultures and societies and goes to the root of what is truly human.

These days, I enjoy watching foreign shows on Netflix, especially since most haven’t succumbed to the Hollywood direction of the main characters hopping into bed with every creature they meet on the first date, a kind of smorgasbord of passion and animal lust, all lungs and sweaty thorax and four hours in makeup to look hot in bed. No more western TV for me, no joy there at all, just a reflection of a dead end quest for sensate immortality and distraction.

So, I watched a show last night in which one of the protagonists explained to a grieving friend how it all passes away … “All joy passes away with time, but so does sorrow and sadness” or something to that effect. I thought is was an apt comment about our times and the goals and choices held up to us by the world as “desirable” and “satisfying”.

St. Paul said: “We are fools for Christ.” … “we are weak, but you are strong; you are honourable, but we without honour. 11Even unto this hour we both hunger and thirst, and are naked, and are buffeted, and have no fixed abode; 12And we labour, working with our own hands: we are reviled, and we bless; we are persecuted, and we suffer it. 13We are blasphemed, and we entreat; we are made as the refuse of this world, the offscouring of all even until now.” (1 Corinthians 4:10-13)

Venerable Fulton Sheen

Much of the rest of this post is drawn from my readings of Venerable Archbishop Fulton Sheen and Cardinal John Henry Newman. Specifically from:

John Henry Newman, Parochial and Plain Sermons, bk. 6, no. 7 (San Francisco: Ignatius Press, 1977), 1241-45.

and

Fulton J. Sheen, Go to Heaven: A Spiritual Road Map to Eternity (p. 132). Ignatius Press.

Much is made these days of “Common Sense” as if somehow, “all right thinking persons” have common sense … hence, in our polite society, there is alleged a commonality of “common sense” amongst those “who think like me and agree with me”. This commonality permits me to virtue signal my esteem of others without ever taking my eyes off myself in the mirror.

Now, common sense never drove any man crazy, common sense supposedly defines “sanity”. But let’s think about this just a bit, this bald assumption about “common” sense.

Common sense never climbed mountains and certainly never cast a mountain into the sea in the biblical sense, common sense is not in any way about faith. Common sense is not violent and yet, violence is the commonest thing in our culture, in our society, and in our world.

Common sense never walked on the moon, or flew a plane or wrote a symphony, and common sense certainly never ran into a burning high rise to save lives.

Common sense never moves towards the sound of the guns, never makes a man willing to offer up his life, and yet it is in losing our life that we put into practice “greater love hath no man”.

Life sometimes can be saved by walking within an inch of death, facing the raging fire, standing firm against impossible odds, in jumping down a cliff, but common sense never makes those sort of jumps.

The soldier at times can cut his way out of his surrounding enemies, perhaps to save his comrades, or perhaps fall upon the grenade to save the rest, but he must have an uncommon carelessness about dying—and common sense does not permit that carelessness.

The Kingdom of heaven can sometimes be gained only by plucking out an eye—but common sense never plucked it out. Common sense is all about self, the “me first” knee jerk reaction.

Common sense makes a man die only for the sake of dying, for there is no choice about dieing, right? All that matters ultimately is dieing without pain, or loss of “dignity”.

It is not common sense, but love and a spirit of self sacrifice which makes a man choose to die for the sake of living—and it is the love of Jesus Christ crucified, which produces the wisdom of heaven at the cost of the foolishness of self sacrifice, of the abandonment of self, in the eyes of the world.

Al Pacino, Devil’s Advocate

Love makes men throw down their lives to take them up again, makes men sell fields for the pearl of great price, makes men treat the world as a trinket, laugh at death, and offer up everything for the one loved.

No matter the opinion of “common sense”, the opinion of the world, the Gospel of Christ is not a gospel of sorrow.

Our contemporary society’s view is that this life is made for pleasure and happiness. Any other view is ridiculed as foolishness. But to those who have actually experienced a few decades of this world, to those who have looked under the surface, it tells a very different tale.

Our doctrine of the Cross teaches the very same lesson which this world teaches to those who live long enough in it, who have much experience in it, who have lived it. Our doctrine of the Cross teaches this lesson more forcibly, but after all it is the very same lesson.

Even today, at this advanced age, some of my friends, when talking about other friends, not present, and often no longer in the world, will say “… and then he got religion”, as if this were like getting some illness. No doubt they say the same thing about me when I am not around. From my viewpoint this is simply the process of waking up … to a new dawn.

Someone famous once said: “The world is sweet to the lips, but bitter to the taste. It pleases us at first, but not at last. It looks gay on the outside, but evil and misery lie concealed within”. When a man has passed a certain number of years in it, he cries out with the Preacher, ‘Vanity of vanities, all is vanity.’

And if he doesn’t “get religion” … he will be forced to say: “All is vanity and vexation of spirit; all is disappointment; all is sorrow; all is pain”. Without the doctrine of the Cross we are invited to accept the culture of death, to escape our pain and disillusion, to accept evil with only a whimper and a sigh, as we stare, runny-eyed into the chasm of the banal..

The judgments of God upon our sins, upon our worship of the god of self, are concealed within the very fabric of the world itself, and eventually these force all men to grief whether they want it or not. The doctrine of the Cross merely anticipates for us the experience of the world. It is a “sneak preview” of the truth of eternity.

The doctrine of the Cross interferes with the common sense superficial view, and with finding a vain transitory joy in what we see and taste and feel, and experience. The doctrine of the Cross forbids our immediate enjoyment, but it grants enjoyment in truth and fullness afterwards. It only forbids us to begin with enjoyment. It only says, if you begin with pleasure you will end in pain.

Blessed John Henry Newman

The doctrine of the Cross bids us begin with the Cross, and in that Cross we shall at first find sorrow, but in a while peace and comfort will rise out of that sorrow.

That Cross leads us to conversion, to mourning, repentance, humiliation, prayer, fasting; we shall sorrow for our sins, we shall sorrow with Christ’s suffering; but all this sorrow will only be undergone in, and result in a happiness far greater than the enjoyment which the world gives—though careless worldly minds will not believe this because it defies common sense.

Careless worldly minds, minds obsessed with “common sense”, ridicule the notion of happiness through sorrow, because they never have tasted it, and consider it a mere matter of word play, semantic gymnastics. In a world of ideology, that truth which religious persons think decent and proper, and try to believe themselves, and to get others to believe, is to the common sense mind impossible, no right minded person really feels that truth.

But in order to truly enjoy this world one must begin with the world unseen, the supernatural world. We must first abstain from the world to truly enjoy the world. We must first fast in order to truly feast. Only those who have learned not to abuse the world are able to use the world. They alone inherit the world, who take it as only a shadow of the world to come, and who, for that world to come, relinquish this world.

“I myself also am a mortal man, like all others”. The “Common Sense” of self worship is a dead end. “No man is an island, entire of itself; every man is a piece of the continent, a part of the main. If a clod be washed away by the sea, Europe is the less, as well as if a promontory were, as well as if a manor of thy friend’s or of thine own were: any man’s death diminishes me, because I am involved in mankind, and therefore never send to know for whom the bells tolls; it tolls for thee.” John Donne. from “Devotions Upon Emergent Occasions, and severall steps in my Sicknes“, written in 1624

Cheers

Joe

 Apollo 15 mission, 1971

Composite of photographs from the Apollo 15 mission, 1971

Common Sense?

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Life in a small town, The Inner Struggle

True Love of Neighbor …

“En Priere”, Bill Douglas, from the album “Kaleidoscope”, (1993)

Our title line, the instruction from our Safari Guide on this worldly adventure, derives from the person and teachings of our Lord Jesus Christ. Christ’s will regarding love of neighbor goes so far beyond what we typically accept as “Love your neighbor as yourself” that it requires special mention.

I am riding on a lot of coat-tails with this post because the thoughts and sentiments have been expressed so well by others that I hesitate to change or paraphrase even a little. And yet these ideas are so moving I have to share.

These days I am trying to take the elevator to the third floor, the third floor I posted about elsewhere.  So, “if your head is not there” to paraphrase Valdy, this might not be for you. which is OK, each of us on our own part of the path, each of us searching for Truth in our own way …

I’m thinking, the way we live these days is akin to being roomies in a 3 story boarding house, sort of like “Friends”. Most of us, we the “masses”, live on the first floor and really don’t give it much thought other than to be vaguely aware that there is another floor above us where the sparkly vampires, the know-it-alls, the Brights, live their exalted lives, beyond our reach or influence, and where all the house rules and secular rewards and punishments descend from.

Now, Albert J. Knock, of whom I have posted before, put it like this: ” … The line of differentiation between the masses and the Remnant is set invariably by quality, not by circumstance. The Remnant are those who by force of intellect are able to apprehend these principles, and by force of character are able, at least measurably, to cleave to them. The masses are those who are unable to do either.”

So, in the 3 story rooming house metaphor, all us easy going folks on the first floor are the “masses” as noted above, prone to temptation and failure and continual worship of self and our carnal appetites. And the folks on the 2nd floor of the rooming house are a sort of remnant in a strictly secular way, the elite, who “by force of intellect are able to apprehend … (some fashionable) … principles, and by force of character are able, at least measurably, to cleave to them“. Those are the ones who learned to handle stairs and doorknobs … our “betters” in a class conscious sort of way, just ask them if you get a chance in passing, they will tell you “of course”.

I am setting the stage for this next bit by quoting from Venerable Fulton Sheen:

*****

“Give me a man who loves and I will tell him what God is.” Such are the words of St. Augustine. Anyone who ever loved craved unity with that which he loved. Thus in marriage the ideal is the unity of two in one flesh; in religion the ideal is to be one with Christ. There is not a single person who loves Our Dear Lord, who does not strive to be united to Him in thought and in desire and even in body and mind.

Venerable Fulton Sheen

Venerable Fulton Sheen

But here is the problem: How to be one with Christ? His earthly life ended over two thousand years ago. Therefore to some He is only a figure Who crossed the stage of history, as did Caesar and Aristotle, and then was seen no more.

Such souls believe that the only way they can be united with Our Lord, is by reading what someone wrote concerning Him, or by singing hymns in His name, or by listening to a sermon on His life.

It is no wonder that such people soon begin to think of Our Lord as a teacher of ethics, or as a great humanitarian reformer like Buddha or Socrates, for they too also once lived, preached, and edified, and left behind them a beautiful memory. It is only minds with little power of penetration that say Our Dear Lord “was a good man”.

May I say that this is precisely what Our Lord was not, viz., a good man, because good men do not lie. If He is not what He claimed to be, what His Miracles witnessed, what the Jewish and Gentile prophecies foretold, viz., the Son of the living God—then He is not just a good man. Then He is a liar, a knave, a deceiver, and a charlatan. If He is not the Christ, the Son of the living God, He is the anti-Christ; but He is not just a good man.

Let us try to understand what Our Divine Lord really is. Begin with yourself. Have you ever thought of how wonderfully you have been made; that there is in you something which can be seen and touched, namely, your body whose nature is fleshy; but there is also something invisible about you, namely your mind and soul with its thoughts, its loves, and its desires.

Your soul is, in a sense, “incarnate” in a body (the word incarnate, as you know, means in the flesh); that is, your soul animates and unifies your body. Now consider the person of Our Divine Lord. He is the true Incarnation, not of a soul in a body, but of God in the form of man.

There is something visible about Him, namely, His perfect human nature, which can handle tools, pat little children’s heads, be thirsty and think and desire like other men. But there is also something invisible about Him, and that is His divinity. His divinity could no more be seen than your soul, though it could be seen working through His human nature, as your soul works through your body.

Just as your body and your soul combine to make one person, so in an infinitely more perfect way, His human nature and His divine nature make but one person, the person of Jesus Christ, the Son of the living God, true God and true man.”

Sheen, Fulton J.. Go to Heaven: A Spiritual Road Map to Eternity (p. 98-99). Ignatius Press.

Oh Earth Oh Earth Return”, Bill Douglas, (1996)

I feel like the blind man trying to describe an elephant to an audience who I cannot see or hear, and the concept of the “elephant” reflects back so critically on my own conduct and thoughts for so much of my life that I am at times reluctant to dive into it and reluctant to accept the conclusions which the elephant emphatically points to … mixing metaphors … I see the Ghost of Christmas past pointing at my own tombstone in silent judgement. The following from “Divine Intimacy”:

” … “Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself” (Mt 22, 39). This measure is so great that it would be difficult to exceed it, when we consider how much every man is inclined to love himself. The good that each of us desires for himself is so great that if we could succeed in desiring just as much for our neighbor — for any neighbor — our charity would be truly magnanimous.

Jesus has said, “and as you would that men should do to you, do you also onto them in like manner” (Lk 6, 31) which, in practice, signifies that we treat others exactly as we wish to be treated ourselves; for example, showing, toward our neighbor, the same consideration if thought, word, and deed, as we would desire for ourselves; serving and pleasing others, accommodating ourselves to their wishes, as we ourselves would wish to be served, pleased, and condescended to.

Alas! our self-love incites us, instead, to use two different measures: one, very large — even exaggerated — for ourselves; the other, very small — even miserly — for our neighbor. The attentions we receive from others always seem to be so trifling, and how easily we complain that we are treated thoughtlessly! Yet very far we are from showing such thoughtfulness toward our neighbor; although in retrospect, we always think we have done too much.

We are very sensitive to the wrongs done us; and even when, in reality, they are slight, we consider them as almost unbearable; whereas we consider as mere nothings the things by which we offend others so freely. The greatest enemy of fraternal charity is self-love, which makes us too sensitive and demanding in what refers to ourselves, and very careless in what refers to others. (Fr. Gabriel of St. Mary Magdalen, O.C.D. from the book “Divine Intimacy” meditations on the interior life for every day of the liturgical year.pp 760)

Nuf for now …

Cheers

Joe

 

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Life in a small town

More on Cancer and Glucose … cancer and respiration …

Kojo No Tsuki” (Rentaro Taki), performed by Yo-Yo Ma, Michio Mamiya, & Patricia Zander, from the album “Japanese Melodies” (1990)

My interest in following up on “Cancer as a Metabolic Disease” is the preponderance of evidence suggesting that Cancer flourishes in a glucose rich bodily environment. Our modern western culture’s generally accepted wisdom on diet and medical care inevitably produces a glucose rich bodily environment.

Coincidentally, we seem to be experiencing an epidemic of cancer of all types with very little success in treating same with conventional treatment models. This nutritional, and medical model and the academic research interests related to these  models appear to have produced the highest disease rates for certain deadly diseases, and the lowest cure rates for those same diseases, in history. (IMAO, opinion only, not validated by research)

At the same time we have witnessed the development and proliferation of the most prestigious, prosperous and profitable sectors of health care, nutrition, government, and academia in Western history. These sectors’ prosperity is underlain by government’s ability to fund, through the use of “public” moneys, their preferred directions and interests in research, health care delivery, and manufacturing, ostensibly in the interest of “public” health, the largest sector by far of all government spending outside of compensation and benefits for government workers and management.

In nations lacking a prosperous “private” economy there is significantly less budget, less personnel at all levels, and significantly less staff and management compensation directed at these sorts of policy targets. This Western tapestry of interrelated sectors and interests is simply too large to be seriously considered as any sort of conspiracy of players, at least too large to be a human conspiracy.

Dr. Thomas N Seyfried,

Dr. Thomas N Seyfried,

However, it is hard to deny that fundamental to these developments is the modern religion of self, our modern culture of narcissism and self worship, our propensity to pursue personal prosperity and to exhibit “Me First” behaviour.

This critical conjunction of “self interest” makes it hard to imagine a better way of anonymously destroying humanity than what we are seeing taking place all around us at this time in our history.

Going along with this behaviour is a sense of: “let the “masses” look after themselves, unless there is a prospect of making revenue off them … what’s in it for me?”. Then self interest takes over as authority systems direct others … “for their own good”.

Stay on track, Joe! I have to remind myself that this is not about what is wrong and how “I” have to fix it. I have to remember that the inner struggle is about turning the sword of the imagination inward, to cut out the inner faults and bad habits, and not to turn outward to destroy the obvious evils without. Why is the default still to point out what is wrong “out there” when there is so much wrong “in here”?

So, what have I understood after getting through the first two chapters of “Cancer as a Metabolic Disease“? Well, … first of all I am always a sucker for detailed bibliographies and cited references. Here are the references pages for just Chapter 2. You can click on the images to get a larger version in another window if these are too small to read. The snippets follow …

So what have I gleaned from Chapter 1 and 2, well, here goes …

First, it became clear to me that the therapeutic action of some anticancer drugs operated largely through reduced caloric intake. Second, that reduced caloric intake could target the majority of cancer hallmarks. Third, that ketone bodies can serve as an alternative fuel to glucose in most cells with normal respiratory function. …” (Cancer as a Metabolic Disease, pp XV)

So my takeaway from this snippet is that following a carbohydrate reduced (and thus a glucose reduced), ketogenic, fat based diet, reduces the presence of glucose and increases the presence of ketone bodies, and that is good for overall health, but especially in reducing the propensity for development of cancer.

Many of the current cancer treatments exacerbate tumor cell energy metabolism, thus allowing the disease to progress and eventually become unmanageable. … The view of cancer as a genetic disease has confounded the problem and is largely responsible for the failure to develop effective therapies. The view of cancer as a genetic disease is based on the flawed notion that somatic mutations (gene mutations) cause cancer. Substantial evidence indicates that genomic instability is linked to protracted respiratory insufficiency. (ie. caused by damage to the metabolic process of cell respiration) (Cancer as a Metabolic Disease, pp XV).

In addition to the six recognized hallmarks of cancer, aerobic fermentation, or the Warburg effect is also a robust metabolic hallmark of most tumors whether they are solid or blood born. Aerobic fermentation involves elevated glucose uptake with lactic acid production in the presence of oxygen.  Elevated glucose uptake with lactic acid production is a defining characteristic of most tumors and is the basis of tumor imaging using labeled glucose analogs. … nearly all tumors depend heavily on glucose for survival.

Again, my takeaway from this is the necessity of a glucose rich environment for cancer to flourish. A ketogenic diet limits glucose levels in the body and effectively limits the possibility of cancer developing through controlling the production of glucose. Also, it is common knowledge in research circles that gene mutation is quite rare amongst healthy cells and certainly not even remotely prevalent enough to account for all the different cancers we are witnessing in the general population these days.

On the other hand, gene mutation as a result of damage to the metabolic process of cell respiration easily accounts for the frequency of cancer in all populations. It appears that the current model has the cart before the horse. It seems that there must be some other mechanism at work to support the cancer industry’s fascination with gene mutation as the primary cause of cancer.

Cancer Statistics ...

Cancer Statistics … from Cancer as a Metabolic Disease, pp 12 Chapter 1

“… Just as there are many causes of plague — heat, insects, rats, — but only one common cause, the plague bacillus, (so) there are many causes of cancer — tar, rays, arsenic, pressure, urethane, — but there is only one common cause into which all other causes of cancer merge, the irreversible injuring of respiration. An increased dependence on energy through glucose fermentation (glycolysis) was viewed as an essential compensatory mechanism of energy production for cell vitality following damage to respiration. … Warburg proposed with insight and certainty that irreversible damage to (cell) respiration was the prime cause of cancer.”

” … James Watson, who co-discovered DNA as genetic material with Francis Crick in 1953, recently suggested that more attention be paid to the metabolism of cancer. Watson also believes that the direction of cancer research in the United States is largely offtrack and misdirected at the highest levels. The absence of major clinical breakthroughs in the cancer war over the last 40 years and the death statistics … support Watson’s contention.

… the Warburg effect can be linked to impaired respiration and energy metabolism … respiratory insufficiency precedes and underlies the genome instability that accompanies tumor development. Once established, genome instability contributes to further respiratory impairment, genome mutability, and tumor progression.”

” I contend that most of the gene defects in natural cancers arise as downstream effects of damages mitochondrial function. (mitochondria are the cell organelles which enable cellular respiration). My hypothesis (Seyfried’s hypothesis) is based on evidence that genome integrity is largely dependent on the cell having sufficient mitochondrial respiration, and that all cells require regulated energy homeostasis to maintain their differentiated state.”

And thus endeth chapter the second. … more to follow as I dig deeper into this dense book.

Cheers

Joe

Rise Up

Rise Up

One of the things life has shown me is that whenever the majority of the chattering classes and the media and the academics and the government wonks are busy saying something is so, that is an almost certain indicator that it is NOT so — being on the wrong side of history is THE defining characteristic of all those opinion makers.

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Life in a small town

Fast Forward 47 Years …

Inner Thoughts”  Rodrigo Rodriguez, from the album “Inner Thoughts” (2006)

 Apollo 15 mission, 1971

Composite of photographs from the Apollo 15 mission, 1971

Thank you BING desktop, for reminding of how far we have fallen.

Those were the days, back when some people actually had hope of something beyond an indexed paycheck and government benefits and union defined smoke breaks and coffee breaks. I remember I was half way through boot camp and had just discovered that most civilians hated the military because we were different and wore uniforms.

And because they were just coming of age after the 60’s and the wonderful epidemic of narcissism which engulfed our polite society, the beginning of the wave that swept away reason and replaced it with “all right minded people believe this” and “anyone who does not think like us is obviously stupid and evil”. All Hail the Glorious CBC! So let it be written, so let it be done!

Meanwhile, back in the real world, Apollo 15 was the ninth manned mission in the United States’ Apollo program, the fourth to land on the Moon, and the eighth successful manned mission. It was the first of what were termed “J missions“, long stays on the Moon, with a greater focus on science than had been possible on previous missions.

It was also the first mission on which the Lunar Roving Vehicle was used. A recording of the launch was included in the Sounds of Earth carried by the Voyager 1 and Voyager 2 space probes. The mission began on July 26, 1971, and ended on August 7. At the time, NASA called it the most successful manned flight ever achieved.[3]

A husband of that time could support a family of 5 in their own home, with a car and a TV and all things needed for a comfortable life for less than C$10,000.00 a year, and do it on one man’s wages with Mum staying home to create and look after the home and “the family”, sewing all our clothes, cooking all our food, and teaching us what we needed to know to become decent human beings. Remember Church, and Sunday, and Sunday School …

The family, the foundation of civilization … now we are considered evil to espouse “one man, one woman, one time”. Sigh, times change, eh? That was then. Back before the religion of the “masses” became football, and golf, and BBQ, well, I guess BBQ was always OK, but wasn’t part of our faith life except in a tangential way.

 

Texas Humor - from a Facebook group I belong to ...

Texas Humor – from a Facebook group I belong to …

So, the way we live these days is akin to being roomies in a 3 story boarding house, sort of like “Friends”.

Most of us, we the “masses”, live on the first floor and really don’t give it much thought other than to be vaguely aware that there is another floor above us where the sparkly vampires, the know-it-alls, the Brights, live their exalted lives, and where all the house rules and punishments descend from.

Now, Albert J. Knock, of whom I have posted before, put it like this: ” … The line of differentiation between the masses and the Remnant is set invariably by quality, not by circumstance. The Remnant are those who by force of intellect are able to apprehend these principles, and by force of character are able, at least measurably, to cleave to them. The masses are those who are unable to do either.”

So, in the 3 story rooming house metaphor, all us easy going folks on the first floor are the “masses” as noted above, and the folks on the 2nd floor of the rooming house are the remnant, the elite who “by force of intellect are able to apprehend these principles, and by force of character are able, at least measurably, to cleave to them“. Those are the ones who learned to handle stairs and doorknobs …

Fulton Sheen puts it like this: “… The first level is the subhuman, or the animal, in which a man is content to live only for his body, for his flesh and its pleasures; when a whole society lives thus, we have what Sorokin has called a “sensate culture”. If reason is used at all on this lowest level, it is only to discover new techniques for providing thrills and amusements for the animal nature.

Man can also live on a second, or higher, level, the rational; here he will pursue a good pagan life and will defend the natural virtues, but without great enthusiasm. Under the inspiration of reason alone, he is tolerant, philanthropic; he favors the underdog and contributes to community enterprises, but he refuses to believe that there is a knowledge beyond the reach of his own intellect or a strength exceeding his own will.”

But what about that 3rd floor, that no one seems to think or talk about …

I am thinking that the awareness of the existence of the 3rd floor starts only when the sword of the imagination is turned away from all the ills, evils, injustices, and trials of our neighbors and our current society.

The possibility of a 3rd floor is perceived when we stop thinking about “fixing” what is manifestly wrong with the “real” world, and first begin to turn that sword inward upon ourselves, cutting out the evil which we start to perceive in the worship of self, the evils which are only powerful in the complete absence of humility and meekness.

“Lord place in me a humble and contrite heart”…

The lenses of my heart sure see a different world than they did 47 years ago

Cheers

Joe

Time for a haircut …

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Venerable Fulton Sheen: Go To Heaven …

Promised myself that I would give equal time in my reading to secular health related reading, fantasy science fiction, and faith related books. The secular health related stuff is the heaviest going – like reading university text books, I can read about three times as much fluffy sci-fi as health stuff. The most satisfying so far at this time is the faith literature, which used to be even harder that the health textbooks.

Go figure … here is a quote from Venerable Fulton Sheen:

Venerable Fulton J. Sheen

Venerable Fulton J. Sheen, May 8, 1895 to December 9, 1979 (aged 84)

“… Not everyone, however, chooses to follow Christ, the Light of the world. This is not to say that men begin with a conscious hatred of the Light, because truth is as native to the mind as light to the eye. But when that Light shone on their souls and revealed their sins, they hated it just as the bank robber hates the searchlight the policeman has turned on him.

The truth which He brought, men recognized as a claim on their allegiance, because they were made for it; but since they had perverted their natures by evil behavior, His truth stirred their consciences and they despised it. All their habits of life, their dishonesties and baser passions, roused them in violent opposition to that Light.

Many a sick man will not undergo a medical examination, for fear the doctor may tell him something he does not like. He told them therefore that He was not a teacher asking for a disciple who would parrot His sayings; He was a savior who first disturbed a conscience and then purified it. But many would never get beyond hating the disturber. The Light is no boon, except to those who are men of good will; their lives may be evil, but at least they want to be good. His presence, He said, was a threat to sensuality, avarice, and lust.

When a man has lived in a dark cave for years, his eyes cannot stand the light of the sun; so the man who refuses to repent turns against mercy. No one can prevent the sun from shining, but every man can pull down the blinds and shut it out. Christ said that no one could be indifferent to Him. Every man, He claimed, had some contact with Him. He is free to reject His influence, but the rejection is the stone which crushes him. No one can remain indifferent once he has met Him. He remains the perpetual element in the character of every hearer.

No teacher in the world ever claimed that rejecting him would harden one’s heart and make a man worse. But here is One who, within three days of going to His death, said that the very rejection of Him would decay the heart. Whether one believes or disbelieves Him, one is never the same afterward. Christ said that He was either the rock on which men would build the foundation of life, or the rock which would crush them.

Never did men just simply pass Him by; He is the abiding presence. Some may think that they allow Him to pass by without receiving Him, but this He called fatal neglect. A fatal crushing would follow not only neglect or indifference, but also when there was formal opposition.

No teacher who ever lived told those who heard him that the rejection of his words would mean their damnation. Even those who believe that Christ was only a teacher would scruple at this judgment about receiving His message. But as He was primarily a savior, the alternative was understandable. To reject the savior was to reject salvation, as Our Lord called Himself in the house of Zacchaeus.

The questioners of His authority had no doubt of the spiritual significance of the parable and the reference to themselves. Their motives were discovered, which only exasperated more those whose designs were evil. When evil is revealed in the light, it does not always repent; sometimes it becomes more evil. …”

Sheen, Fulton J.. Go to Heaven: A Spiritual Road Map to Eternity (pp. 59-60). Ignatius Press.

Cheers

Joe

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The Rule of St. Benedict … Rule #4

St. Benedict of Nursia, March 480 – 543 or 547 AD

St. Benedict of Nursia, March 480 – 543 or 547 AD

Reading “The Rule of St. Benedict“. Turns out to be amazingly easy reading, clear, short and easily understood by even simple minded folks like myself. It is kind of like a precis of everything we were always taught about the right way to live.

I have read through about 70% of the book and more than half of it so far is specific to the conduct of life in a monastery. While this is not really applicable to life outside a cloistered religious order the underlying principles actually apply well to daily life in the world, and what constitutes desirable conduct towards others, our neighbours.

But the most important observation so far is: ” 42If you notice something good in yourself, give credit to God, not to yourself, 43but be certain that the evil you commit is always your own and yours to acknowledge.” 

That just flies in the face of everything our modern society believes about how good we are. Man’s natural state is really one of misery and poverty. We, and our society are not, in  fact, good by any real measure of good, hence the popularity of religion of relativism these days.

The notion that the culture and society all around us is somehow “advanced” and that we are responsible for that advance is the fruit of our overweening narcissism. We are the woodpeckers and termites in the dead tree of Western Christendom.

As a famous writer remarked:

“Throughout history, poverty is the normal condition of man. Advances which permit this norm to be exceeded—here and there, now and then—are the work of an extremely small minority, frequently despised, often condemned, and almost always opposed by all right-thinking people. Whenever this tiny minority is kept from creating, or (as sometimes happens) is driven out of a society, the people then slip back into abject poverty.

“This is known as ‘bad luck’. ” – Robert A. Heinlein

Benedict of Nursia (Latin: Benedictus Nursiae; Italian: Benedetto da Norcia; Vulgar Latin: *Benedecto; Gothic: Benedikt; c. 2 March 480 – 543 or 547 AD) is a Christian saint, who is venerated in the Catholic Church, the Eastern Orthodox Churches , the Oriental Orthodox Churches, the Anglican Communion and Old Catholic Churches.[3] He is a patron saint of Europe.[4]

Benedict founded twelve communities for monks at Subiaco, Lazio, Italy (about 40 miles (64 km) to the east of Rome), before moving to Monte Cassino in the mountains of southern Italy. The Order of Saint Benedict is of later origin and, moreover, not an “order” as commonly understood but merely a confederation of autonomous congregations.[5]

Benedict’s main achievement is his “Rule of Saint Benedict“, containing precepts for his monks. It is heavily influenced by the writings of John Cassian, and shows strong affinity with the Rule of the Master.

But it also has a unique spirit of balance, moderation and reasonableness (ἐπιείκεια, epieíkeia), and this persuaded most religious communities founded throughout the Middle Ages to adopt it.

As a result, his Rule became one of the most influential religious rules in Western Christendom. For this reason, Benedict is often called the founder of Western Christian monasticism.

 

St. Benedict of Nursia

St. Benedict of Nursia

CHAPTER 4. THE TOOLS FOR GOOD WORKS
1First of all, love the Lord God with your whole heart, your whole soul and all your strength, 2and love your neighbor as yourself (Matt 22:37-39; Mark 12:30-31; Luke 10:27). 3Then the following: You are not to kill, 4not to commit adultery; 5you are not to steal 6nor to covet (Rom 13:9); 7you are not to bear false witness (Matt 19:18; Mark 10:19; Luke 18:20). 8You must honor everyone (1 Pet 2:17), 9and never do to another what you do not want done to yourself (Tob 4:16; Matt 7:12; Luke 6:31).

10Renounce yourself in order to follow Christ (Matt 16:24; Luke 9:23); 11discipline your body (1 Cor 9:27); 12do not pamper yourself, 13but love fasting. 14You must relieve the lot of the poor, 15clothe the naked, 16visit the sick (Matt 25:36), 17and bury the dead. 18Go to help the troubled 19and console the sorrowing.

20Your way of acting should be different from the world’s way; 21the love of Christ must come before all else. 22You are not to act in anger 23or nurse a grudge. 24Rid your heart of all deceit. 25Never give a hollow greeting of peace 26or turn away when someone needs your love. 27Bind yourself to no oath lest it prove false, 28but speak the truth with heart and tongue. 29Do not repay one bad turn with another (1 Thess 5:15; 1 Pet 3:9).

30Do not injure anyone, but bear injuries patiently. 31Love your enemies (Matt 5:44; Luke 6:27). 32If people curse you, do not curse them back but bless them instead. 33Endure persecution for the sake of justice (Matt 5:10). 34You must not be proud, 35nor be given to wine (Titus 1:7; 1 Tim 3:3). 36Refrain from too much eating 37or sleeping, 38and from laziness (Rom 12:11). 39Do not grumble 40or speak ill of others. 41Place your hope in God alone.

42If you notice something good in yourself, give credit to God, not to yourself, 43but be certain that the evil you commit is always your own and yours to acknowledge. 44Live in fear of judgment day 45and have a great horror of hell. 46Yearn for everlasting life with holy desire. 47Day by day remind yourself that you are going to die. 48Hour by hour keep careful watch over all you do, 49aware that God’s gaze is upon you, wherever you may be. 50As soon as wrongful thoughts come into your heart, dash them against Christ and disclose them to your spiritual father.

51Guard your lips from harmful or deceptive speech. 52Prefer moderation in speech 53and speak no foolish chatter, nothing just to provoke laughter; 54do not love immoderate or boisterous laughter. 55Listen readily to holy reading, 56and devote yourself often to prayer. 57Every day with tears and sighs confess your past sins to God in prayer 58and change from these evil ways in the future. 59Do not gratify the promptings of the flesh (Gal 5:16); 60hate the urgings of self-will.

61Obey the orders of the abbot unreservedly, even if his own conduct—which God forbid—be at odds with what he says. Remember the teaching of the Lord: Do what they say, not what they do (Matt 23:3). 62Do not aspire to be called holy before you really are, but first be holy that you may more truly be called so.

63Live by God’s commandments every day; 64treasure chastity, 65harbor neither hatred 66nor jealousy of anyone, 67and do nothing out of envy. 68Do not love quarreling; 69shun arrogance. 70Respect the elders 71and love the young. 72Pray for your enemies out of love for Christ. 73If you have a dispute with someone, make peace with him before the sun goes down. 74And finally, never lose hope in God’s mercy.

75These, then, are the tools of the spiritual craft. 76When we have used them without ceasing day and night and have returned them on judgment day, our wages will be the reward the Lord has promised: 77What the eye has not seen nor the ear heard, God has prepared for those who love him (1 Cor 2:9).
78The workshop where we are to toil faithfully at all these tasks is the enclosure of the monastery and stability in the community.
The Rule of St. Benedict in English (pp. 26-29). Liturgical Press.

Something to think about. How does one put these principles into practice in our worldly life?

Cheers

Joe

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Life in a small town, Pen as Sword - Social Commentary, The Inner Struggle

Fulton Sheen quotes … the masses, and coat-tails again

Albert J. Knock

Albert J. Knock

I am thinking again of Albert J. Knock’s essay which first appeared in The Atlantic Monthly in 1936 under the title “Isaiah’s Job”.

article found at:  http://mises.org/library/isaiahs-job

Again, I quote (since I could not do better) :

*****

As the word masses is commonly used, (especially today in the early 21st century) it suggests agglomerations of poor and underprivileged people, laboring people, proletarians, and it means nothing like that; it means simply the majority.

The mass man is one who has neither the force of intellect to apprehend the principles issuing in what we know as the humane life, nor the force of character to adhere to those principles steadily and strictly as laws of conduct; and because such people make up the great and overwhelming majority of mankind, they are called collectively the masses.

The line of differentiation between the masses and the Remnant is set invariably by quality, not by circumstance. The Remnant are those who by force of intellect are able to apprehend these principles, and by force of character are able, at least measurably, to cleave to them. The masses are those who are unable to do either.”

*****

And Archbishop Fulton Sheen had some thoughts in a similar vein, seeing the masses and reality with a clarity I find refreshing. It’s not just me. This truly is “the Never ending Story”. Anyway, here are some quotes which are more understandable and more credible in light of Venerable Mary of Agreda’s “The Mystical City Of God” visions

So … quotes by Sheen – taken from various sources, including Facebook, and  http://motheofgod.com/threads/archbishop-fulton-sheen-1895-1979-prophetic-quotes.11156/

Archbishop Fulton Sheen and St. John Paul II, 1979

Archbishop Fulton Sheen and St. John Paul II, 1979

“It is characteristic of any decaying civilization that the great masses of the people are unaware of the tragedy. Humanity in a crisis is generally insensitive to the gravity of the times in which it lives.

Men do not want to believe their own times are wicked, partly because they have no standard outside of themselves by which to measure their times. If there is no fixed concept of justice, how shall men know it is violated?

Only those who live by faith really know what is happening in the world; the great masses without faith are unconscious of the destructive processes going on, because they have lost the vision of the heights from which they have fallen.” Fulton Sheen

Yes, man, created to be full of grace and faith and fallen so far. I found another site which seems to hold Fulton Sheen in as high opinion as do I. There are a collection of quotes in a post from August 2917 …

“I am amazed at how clear a vision Archbishop Sheen had of both his time and of the future. How would the Vatican view him if he were alive today? Here are a few selected quotes from “AZQUOTES.COM” for us to ponder:

Moral principles do not depend on a majority vote. Wrong is wrong, even if everybody is wrong. Right is right, even if nobody is right.Fulton Sheen

And another 24 good ones are here.

Happy Good Sunday Morning.

Cheers

Joe

 

 

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Life in a small town, The Inner Struggle

The Never Ending Story …

Kojo No Tsuki” (Rentaro Taki), performed by Yo-Yo Ma, Michio Mamiya, & Patricia Zander, from the album “Japanese Melodies” (1990)

Aizu Castle

Aizu Castle

Why do we suffer? In the movies the hero usually wins in the end, albeit occasionally dying heroically for others, as in the movie “Armageddon”.

But it does seem that in the “real” world, outside of the story teller’s fantasies, it is usually the bad guys who seem to always end up on top.

Why does this seem to be the case? In this world, at least, no good deed goes unpunished. All the ruined castles of our dreams are stark testimony to this sad fact.

I have observed this and wondered about it for decades, once it became apparent that there were good guys and bad guys and good causes and bad causes outside my own narrow personal concerns.

In my teens I left the church of my birth and headed out into the wide world on my own. In my attachment to my own intelligence, my human imagination, my pride, I couldn’t conceive of a God who created the whole universe and everything in it, that still had time for a person called Joe, some lonely grain of sand on the beach of life.

The idea of being loved personally by God was “inconceivable”. I measured everything in human terms, my own yardstick. Now, at 66 years young, I find myself with a completely different point of view. I have seen enough and read enough, and thought enough to understand that although it “seems” that the bad guys always win, in fact this is a never ending story.

After the entire history of the world, the bad guys are still trying their best to overcome “good” in their own narrow interest, no matter how big it appears to be to those of us experiencing it personally in the here and now.

Still trying, never actually winning, no matter how loudly they brag, or threaten, no matter how often they declare victory, no matter how often they declare the case closed, the matter settled, that “all right thinking people” know the truth … they never actually win.

Just witness Child Justin’s recent embarrassments concerning splash-back about “groping” and pedophile friends getting arrested. Paraphrasing Jesus “virtue signalling is its own reward”.

Total victory always eludes the bad guys, and this story, through all of historical time, this entire struggle, is but a split second in eternity … The Angelic creatures, the Heavenly host, exist in God’s eternal now and their choices are instant for eternity and irrevocable.

But we, we mortals are truly blessed, mankind has been gifted by our Divine Father with a lifetime, an existence within time, a time for rousing, a time for choosing, a time for conversion, a time for repentance.

Someone famous and holy once remarked that “our entire life is but a single night in a bad hotel”. Another remarked “What does it matter in the light of eternity, “Quid hoc ad aeternitatem” in Latin.

Our default condition is love of self, this is our “natural state. And uniquely amongst all the created, we are gifted with intelligence, free will and time, time enough for change, for conversion, for repentance.

I am reading a book right now called:

THE MYSTICAL CITY OF GOD,  THE DIVINE HISTORY AND LIFE OF THE VIRGIN MOTHER OF GOD MANIFESTED TO MARY OF AGREDA FOR THE ENCOURAGEMENT OF MEN.

Translation from the Original Authorized Spanish Edition BY FR. GEORGE J. BLATTER under his nom de plume Fiscar Marison COMPLETE EDITION CONTAINING ALL FOUR VOLUMES WITH GENERAL INDEX AS WELL AS SPECIFIC TABLE OF CONTENTS FOR EACH VOLUME ILLUSTRATED

Edited by Paul A. Böer, Sr. VERITATIS SPLENDOR PUBLICATIONS et cognoscetis veritatem et veritas liberabit vos (Jn 8:32) MMXIII

I have a hard copy in 4 volumes and also an eBook on my Kindle. It was heavy going at the start but I have reached chapter 13 in volume 1 now and it is much easier. And it is very much to the point regarding why things are as they are in the world as we know it.

Mary of Jesus of Ágreda (Spanish: María de Jesús), OIC, also known as the Abbess of Ágreda (2 April 1602 – 24 May 1665), was a Franciscan abbess and spiritual writer, known especially for her extensive correspondence with King Philip IV of Spain and reports of her bilocation between Spain and its colonies in New Spain (now New Mexico and Texas). Also known as “The Blue Nun”, she was a noted mystic of her era.

She is an “Incorruptible” and her body is  on display at her Abbey in Agreda. The skeptics of this world have no rational or scientific explanation for the documented fact of multiple cases of “Incorruptibility”. The Communist Party of Russia (a few of the modern “Bad Guys”) tried to replicate it with the body of Lenin using modern embalming and makeup techniques.

Anyway, I would not have given her book a second glance at age 16, I knew everything already back then. But now it sings a True song.  I am going to quote at length from it, and also from St. Paul’s 2nd letter to the Corinthians, because I watched the new movie Paul, Apostle of Christ” a couple of days ago and was much impressed.

So if that sort of stuff is not your cup of tea then just give it a pass. When and if you are ready for it it will sing to you as well … here goes: from volume 1 pp 109 vs 112 thru 113

“Crux Fidelis”, Benedictines of Mary, Queen of Apostles, from the album “Lent at Ephesus”, (2014)

*****

Venerable Mary of Agreda, incorruptable

Venerable Mary of Agreda, In 1909 her casket was opened for the first time after her death in 1665. Her body was found to be completely incorrupt.

” … the eternal Father conferred with the other Persons of the blessed Trinity in regard to this petition. He also partly revealed to the holy angels the decree of this divine consistory, saying, in regard to the sacraments resolved upon: “Lucifer has raised the banner of pride and sin and will persecute with all his malice the whole human race.

With cunning he will pervert many men, availing himself of their own passions for their destruction.

In the blindness of sin and vice men will prevaricate, heedless of danger. But his lying pride, his sins and vices, are infinitely distant from our nature and wishes.

We will therefore bring out the triumph of virtue and sanctity; for this purpose the second Person will assume human nature; He will exalt and teach humility, obedience and all the virtues, and thus will secure the salvation of mortals.

Being true God He will become humble and submissive. He will be the Just Man, the Model and Teacher of all virtues. These alone shall be accredited before our tribunal and shall always triumph over vices.

We will raise up the lowly and humble the proud (Math. 11, 28) ; we will make labors and endurance praiseworthy in our sight; we resolve to help the afflicted and the sorrowful. Let them be corrected by afflictions and thereby advance in our grace and friendship and, according to their capabilities, reach salvation in the practice of virtue.

Blessed will be they that weep (Math. 5, 3), and happy the poor and those that suffer for justice sake and for Christ, their Chief; and the insignificant ones shall be magnified, the meek of heart exalted.

The peaceful shall be loved as our sons. Most dear shall those be to us, who forgive and suffer injuries and love their enemies. We will assign to them copious benedictions of our grace and an immortal glory in heaven.

Our Onlybegotten will put in practice these decrees, and those that follow Him shall be our chosen ones, our cherished ones; they shall be refreshed and rewarded by Us; their good works shall be engendered in our own mind, which is the first cause of all virtue.

We give permission to the bad ones to oppress the good, thus helping them to gain the crown, while for themselves they increase the punishment. Let there be scandals (Math. 18, 7) for the common good; unhappy be those that cause them, and blessed they that are proved by them. The vain and the proud will afflict and despise the humble; the great and the powerful will oppress the lowly and abject ones. They will give benediction instead of curses (I Cor. 4, 12).

While they are pilgrims, they shall be rejected by men, but afterwards they shall be ranked with the angelic spirits, our sons, and they will enjoy the seats and crowns, which the unfortunate and unhappy apostates have lost. The stubborn and the proud shall be condemned to eternal death, where they will recognize their foolish proceedings and their perverseness.

113. “In order that all may have a true model and superabundant grace, if they wish to use it, the Son will descend, capable of suffering and as a Redeemer, and He shall save men (whom Lucifer defrauded of their happy state); and He shall raise them up through his infinite merits.

We have resolved and determined upon the salvation of men, through a Redeemer and Teacher, who shall be able to propitiate and to teach, who shall be born and live poor, shall die despised, condemned by men to a most ignominious and frightful Death; who shall be esteemed a sinner and a criminal, and yet shall satisfy our justice for the guilt of sin.

On account of his foreseen merits We will show mercy and kindness. All will understand, that those who are humble and peaceful, those that practice virtue, that suffer and yet forgive, are the followers of Christ and our sons. Nobody will be capable of entering by his own free will into our kingdom, unless he denies himself, and, taking up his cross, follows his Chief and Master.”

*****

Venerable Mary of Agreda. The Mystical City of God: Complete Edition Containing all Four Volumes with Illustrations. Veritatis Splendor Publications. volume 1 pp 109 vs 112 thru 113.

and

*****

The Mystical City Of God

The Mystical City Of God, by Venerable Mary of Agreda

” … As soon as Lucifer with his followers entered hell, they assembled in general council, which lasted to the morning of Thursday.

During this time Lucifer exerted all his astuteness and diabolical malice in conferring with the demons and concocting plans to offend God so much the more deeply, and to obtain revenge for the chastisement, to which he had been subjected.

They came to the conclusion and resolved that the greatest vengeance and injury against God would be to impede the effects of the love, which they knew God bore toward mankind.

This they hoped to attain by deceiving men, and persuading them, or even, as far as possible, compelling them to neglect the friendship of God, to be ungrateful toward Him, and to rebel against his will.

123. “This we must strive to do,” said Lucifer, “toward this end we must apply all our forces, all our solicitude and knowledge. We will subject the human creatures to our influence and will, in order to destroy them. We will persecute this race of men and will deprive them of the reward promised to them.

We will exert all our vigilance, to prevent them from arriving at the vision of God, which was denied us unjustly. I will gain great triumphs over them; I will destroy them all and subject them to my designs. I will sow new sects and errors, and set up laws contrary to those of the Most High in all things.

I will raise up from among men false prophets and leaders, who will spread these doctrines (Act 20, 30) and I will scatter this seed through them and afterwards I will assign to them a place in these profound torments. I will afflict the poor, oppress the afflicted, and persecute the timid.

I will sow discord, excite wars, and stir up nations against each other. I will raise up proud and haughty men to extend the dominion of sin and after they shall have executed my designs, I will bury them in this eternal fire, and in so much the greater torments, the more faithfully they followed me.

This is my kingdom and this is the reward which I will give to those who follow me.” 124. “I will wage fierce war against the incarnate Word, for although He is God, He is also man, and therefore of a lower nature than mine.

I will exalt my throne and my dignity above his; I will conquer Him and will humble Him by my power and astuteness. The Woman who is to be his Mother shall perish at my hands. What is one Woman against my power and greatness?

And you, ye demons, who were injured together with me, follow me and obey me in the pursuit of this vengeance, as you have followed me in disobedience I Pretend to love men, in order to destroy them; serve them, in order to ruin them and deceive them; help them, in order to pervert them and draw them into these my hellish regions.”

No human tongue can explain the malice and fury of this first council of Lucifer and his hosts against the human race, which although not yet in existence, was to be created. In it were concocted all the vices and sins of the world, thence proceeded lies, sects and errors; all iniquity had its origin in that chaos and in that abominable gathering, and all those that do evil are in the service of the prince of this assembly.”

Venerable Mary of Agreda. The Mystical City of God: Complete Edition Containing all Four Volumes with Illustrations. Veritatis Splendor Publications. Volume 1 pp 117-119 vs 122 thru 124.

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And St. Paul has something similar to say:

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The Light of the Gospel

1Therefore, having this ministry by the mercy of God, we do not lose heart. 2But we have renounced disgraceful, underhanded ways.

We refuse to practiceth cunning or to tamper with God’s word, but by the open statement of the truth we would commend ourselves to everyone’s conscience in the sight of God.

3And even if our gospel is veiled, it is veiled to those who are perishing. 4In their case the god of this world has blinded the minds of the unbelievers, to keep them from seeing the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God.

5For what we proclaim is not ourselves, but Jesus Christ as Lord, with ourselves as your servants for Jesus’ sake. 6For God, who said, “Let light shine out of darkness,” has shone in our hearts to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ.

Treasure in Jars of Clay

7But we have this treasure in jars of clay, to show that the surpassing power belongs to God and not to us. 8We are afflicted in every way, but not crushed; perplexed, but not driven to despair; 9persecuted, but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyed; 10always carrying in the body the death of Jesus, so that the life of Jesus may also be manifested in our bodies.

11For we who live are always being given over to death for Jesus’ sake, so that the life of Jesus also may be manifested in our mortal flesh. 12So death is at work in us, but life in you. 13Since we have the same spirit of faith according to what has been written, “I believed, and so I spoke,” we also believe, and so we also speak,

14knowing that he who raised the Lord Jesus will raise us also with Jesus and bring us with you into his presence. 15For it is all for your sake, so that as grace extends to more and more people it may increase thanksgiving, to the glory of God.

16So we do not lose heart. Though our outer self is wasting away, our inner self is being renewed day by day. 17For this light momentary affliction is preparing for us an eternal weight of glory beyond all comparison, 18as we look not to the things that are seen but to the things that are unseen. For the things that are seen are transient, but the things that are unseen are eternal.

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Paul’s 2nd Letter to the Corinthians, Chapter 4

I suppose that is pretty much enough inner struggle for now …

So, more cancer stuff to follow, as I make more progress in my new Cancer book.

Cheers

Joe

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