Friday, May 22, 2020

Reading "Dracula" According to its Own Timeline

Since it's World Goth Day, I thought I would reveal a current project I am hoping to get through. It should be easy enough and so far so good.

Dracula is definitely one of my favorite novels of all time, but it's been a while since I read it. For a long time I have said that I wanted to read it according to its own timeline. The novel is written in a diary format and takes place chronologically and largely in England and Transylvania within the same year between 3 May and 6 November.

Tuesday, May 19, 2020

Remembering Dr. Ravi Zacharias

In March 2020, it was revealed that world-renowned Christian apologist and evangelist Ravi Zacharias had been diagnosed with a malignant and rare cancer within his spine. With sadness, he succumbed this morning to this cancer that crept into his life a few months ago. He was 74 years old.

I can't say I knew Ravi personally, but I did take two courses of his while I was a student in Charlotte, North Carolina. One course was on World Religions and the other was an Introduction to Christian Apologetics. Pretty much the entire school took those two classes, being a popular and celebrity name, so it was almost impossible to interact with him during that time, though we did meet and I even have a few photos with him somewhere. If there is one thing I remember about meeting him, is that he was a very gentle and humble man, always with a smile on his face. In the classroom, he taught from a level of deep knowledge and personal experience, and you left every class not only better informed on a particular subject, but even inspired since he couldn't help but teach without his words invading your heart as well as your mind.

Monday, May 18, 2020

Not an Obsolete Debate

I think now is a good time to think about human freedom and whether or not our rights come from God or from the government. After all, the Declaration of Independence, by way of justifying the enormous steps the Founding Fathers were about to take, states “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.” And “That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men . . .” That is, first comes the Creator, who then endows his creatures with “certain unalienable rights,” and then the creatures form governments to “secure those rights.” Does the government today, not only on the federal level but on the local state level, recognize the fact that they are merely in existence to secure the unalienable rights endowed on humanity by the Creator, or do they think that our rights come from the government itself? This is an interesting debate that is going on in our country today.

Friday, May 15, 2020

Covid 19: Judgment Day

A few weeks ago I recorded my thoughts on the state of the world in the current circumstance we are in, told through some of my experiences since I last wrote about them on March 16th, and I concluded with my opinion on these matters and what should be done now. I got into some political issues as well. I never published this. It totaled 23 pages in length, written quickly with many random thoughts. I was going to publish it here. As I thought about it, it was decided by me to delete it and wipe it from existence. Even though I stand by everything that was written, I thought it best to not share with the public. This was my judgment, and I stand by it.

Sunday, April 26, 2020

Why I Watch "The Hunchback of Notre Dame" Every Year on the Sunday After Easter

When I returned from a trip to Paris a few years back, I started a tradition of watching different versions of The Hunchback of Notre Dame every year on the Sunday after Easter, which is known as Thomas Sunday or in the West as the Octave of Easter. The reason I do this is because I love the story and because of the link with the name of the hunchback: Quasimodo.

The deformed Quasimodo is described by Victor Hugo as "hideous" and a "creation of the devil". He was born with a severe hunchback, and a giant wart that covers his left eye. He was born to a Gypsy tribe, but due to his monstrous appearance he was switched during infancy with a physically normal baby girl, Agnes. After being discovered, Quasimodo is exorcised by Agnes's mother (who believed that the Gypsies ate her child) and taken to Paris, where he is found abandoned in Notre Dame (on the foundlings' bed, where orphans and unwanted children are left to public charity) on Quasimodo Sunday, the First Sunday after Easter, by Claude Frollo, the Archdeacon of Notre Dame, who adopts the baby, names him after the day the baby was found, and brings him up to be the bell-ringer of the Cathedral.