Sunday, December 24, 2006


'Tis Christmas eve, traditionally one of my most favorite days of the year. The traditions we have associated with Christmas all start on this evening and last until I'm hyped. Christmas rocks. But, surprise surprise, I actually have something a little more thoughtful to write about today.

I've been thinking alot lately about incarnation. For those of you who don't know what it means, it means "enfleshment." The doctrine of the Incarnation is that which states that God became enfleshed when he became a human in the form of Jesus. Anglicans are traditionally very incarnational be incarnational means that we believe God to be present in the world in a very real and tangible way. But that all started at Christmas...

Annie Dillard wrote a passage about Easter and how Easter is so profound and radical that we should all be going to church on Easter Sunday not dressed in our finery but wearing crash helmets. While I wholeheartedly agree, I feel the same could be said (and may even be more appropriate) for Christmas. Easter could not have happened in the first place without it. But even more importantly, the fact that God became fully human is so profound that it should make us want to run around like crazy people! In other traditions of the world, God does participate in human life. Particularly if one were to look at the Hindu tradition, one will find very real interactions between God and God's people. Just look at all of the stories surrounding Krishna, or even just look at the Mahabarata and you'll get the idea. But what makes Christianity different is that God didn't just come down to the earth, God became human. Just like us. Look at the Christmas story if you're unsure. I have a rather long passage that I would like to post, written by Evelyn Underhill called "The Light of the World."

"...the heavens open and what is disclosed? A Baby, God manifest in the flesh. The stable, the manger, the straw; poverty, cold, darkness--these form the setting of the divine gift. In this child God gives his supreme message to the soul- Spirit to spirit-but in a human way. Outside in the fields the heavens open and the shepherds look up astonished to find the music and radiance of reality all around them. BUt inside, our closest contact with that same reality is being offered to us in the very simplest, homeliest way-emerging right into our ordinary life. A baby-just that. We are not told that the blessed, virgin Mary saw the angels or heard the Gloria in the air. Her initiation had been quite different, like the quiet voice speaking in our deepest prayer- 'The Lord is with thee!' 'Behold the handmaid of the Lord.' Humble self-abandonment is quite enough to give us God...

It is easy for the devout to join up with the shepherds and fall into place at the crib and look out into the surrounding night and say, 'Look at those extraordinary intellectuals wandering about after a star with no religious sense at all! Look at that clumsy camel, what an unspiritual animal it is! We know the ox and the ass are the right animals to have! Look what queer gifts and off types of self-consecration they are bringing; not the sort of people who come to church!' But remember that the child who began by receiving these very unexpected pilgrims had a woman of the streets for his faithful friend and two thieves for his comrades at the end: and looking at these two extremes let us try to learn a little of the height and breadth and depth of his love--and then apply it to our own lives.

Beholding his glory is only half our job. In our souls too the mysteries must be brought forth; we are not really Christians till that has been done. 'The Eternal Birth,' says Eckhart, 'must take place in you.' And another mystic adds that human nature is like a stable inhabited by the ox of passion and the ass of prejudice; animals which take up a lot of room and which I suppose most of us are feeing on the quiet. And it is there between them, pushing them out, that Christ must be born and int heir very manger he must be laid- and they will be he first to fall on their knees before them. Sometimes Christians seem far nearer to those animals than to Christ in his simply poverty, self-abandoned God."

Just some food for thought. Merry Christmas everyone.

Sunday, December 17, 2006

Rick (and Hilary)

Rick and I at the Winter Waltz. I love this picture :)


Howdy everyone. Sorry it's been a while since my last post...tons of things have been happening in my life, and I've been slacking when it comes to blogging. Hopefully over the holidays I will be able to get things back in to shape in that respect. So mea culpa, and I hope you will forgive me.

So. Big things have been coming my way. I have two big pieces of news.
1. I have a new love. YAY!!! His name is Rick, and he's the most amazing man I've ever been with before in my life. I mean...I could just list the ways that he's so awesome. He cooks for me, he fixed my bike for me, he walks in traffic before me (if we can't see if anything is coming), he took me to the Nutcracker for Christmas...he's amazing. Simply amazing. I can't gush enough about how great he is. Hopefully he'll be down in KY sometime this spring so I can introduce him to you all. I think you'll really like him. He's 28, works in publishing, and owns a house. I know, right? A house! Needless to say, he's responsible, which is nice. And a gentleman, which is incredibly hard to come by, especially up here. For those wanting to know, we met online (at Yahoo). I had actually given up on the whole thing and had seen Rick's profile, thought he was cute, but figured that he would be like the rest of the guys on there and not respond to my emails. But apparently Rick was notified when I viewed his profile and he sent me an "icebreak." So I wrote him back...we emailed for a week or so and then im'ed, and then went on a date! And it was amazing...and it's been fantastic since then! I'll post a picture here in a minute once I finish this blog. But like I said, he's an amazing man. Truly amazing. Not to mention that he has a college degree (which has been a rarity in my love life) and he's nice (another rarity). Just when I had consigned myself to a love life of Bridget Jones-like proportions, here comes Rick. :) He makes me smile.

2. I got in to Duke!!!! This was my number one choice for seminary. It was an amazing fit when I went there, and all I could think when I left was how good of a fit it was. And I got in! Pray that they call me this next week about money, because I could really use the financial help...but woohoo!! Now that I'm in, I'm goign to start applying for scholarships. I decided not to apply anywhere else. I think I could really grow at Duke more so than at any of the other schools I looked at, so I'll find a way to make it work.

Other than that...I would say the semester is almost over, but that would be a lie since it doesn't end until January. But break is almost here, which will be nice. I have a Greek quiz in the morning and a tomorrow night. So I'll be writing the paper all day tomorrow. Nothing like waiting until the last minute, eh? But after I study Greek tonight I'm going to try to get an outline put together that will make my life a little easier tomorrow. And I have to pack, as I'm leaving for Louisville on Tuesday. So if I don't talk to some of you before then, have a MERRY CHRISTMAS!!!!

Friday, December 01, 2006


I was looking at a friend's notes on Facebook today, and one of them is this thing you do with some music on your playlist. I think what's on someone's mp3 can tell you a lot about a person, in the sense of figuring out how ecletic they are, what they like, etc. So what you do is put your music player on shuffle and write down the first 40 songs that come up. Then you answer some questions. Here's how it turned out for me...these are the first forty that came up out of 2165 that are on my ipod. It goes song title, artist, album

1. Kathy's Song, Simon and Garfunkel Live
2. Move, Jonathan Elias, American River
3. Get it Like you Like It (Acoustic), Ben Harper, Both Sides of the Gun
4. Perhaps Love, John Denver, The Best of John Denver
5. Smile, Weezer, Green
6. Save it For A Rainy Day, The Jayhawks, Rainy Day Music
7. Personent Hodie, Choir of King's College Cambridge, Essential Carols: The Very Best of King's College Cambridge
8. What You Are, Dave Matthews Band, Everyday
9. Angel of Harmlem, U2, The Best of 1980-1990
10. Trouble, Coldplay, Parachutes
11. Mozart Requiem K 626 .3 Sequenz-Dies Irae (can't remember the group)
12. Galileo, Indigo Girls, 1200 Curfews
13. Carriage, Counting Crows, Hard Candy
14. She Thinks I Still Care, James Taylor, Live
15. Eraser, Nine Inch Nails, The Downward Spiral
16. Guitar Man, Bread, Singers and Songwriters 1972-3
17. Millworker, James Taylor, Live
18. How Sweet it Is (To Be Loved by You) Live (there seems to be a string of these..)
19. A Ceremony of Carols, Op. 28 ix Spring Carol; Choir of King's College Cambridge, Britten: Choral Music
20. God Rest Ye Merry Gentleman, Manheim Steamroller, Christmas
21. Spies, Coldplay, Parachutes
22. Hurt, Nine Inch Nails, The Downward Spiral
23. Faraway Land, Alison Kraus and Union Station, AKUS Live
24. Glory and Worship, Choir of King's College Cambridge, Handel Coronation Anthems
25. Stuck in A Moment You Can't Get Out Of, U2, All That You Can't Leave Behind
26. Hand in My Pocket, Alanis Morsette, Jagged Little Pill
27. Lie In Our Graves, Dave Matthews Band, Live at Red Rocks
28. Nights in White Satin, The Moody Blues, Singers and Songwriters, 1972-3
29. Pslam 23, The Choir of Christ Church Cathedral, Oxford, Howard Goodall Choral Works
30. Track 11 (forgot title and it's not in there), Bonnie Raitt and Norah Jones, Bonnie Raitt and Friends
31. Wunderkind, Alanis Morisette, The Chronicles of Narnia
32. Taking Over Me, Evanescence, Fallen
33. Constellations, Jack Johnson, In Between Dreams
34. Too High, Dave Matthews and Friends, Some Devil
35. Lover Lay Down, Dave Matthews Band, Under the Table and Dreaming
36. Enough to be On Your Way, James Taylor, Greatest Hits 2
37. Welcome to the Cruel World, Ben Harper and the Innocent Criminals, Live from Mars
38. Where Could I Go, Ben Harper and the Blind Boys of Alabama, There Will Be a Light
39. Joking, Indigo Girls, 1200 Curfews
40. The Black Gate Opens, Howard Shore and Sir James Galway, The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King
41. Copland Concerto for Clarinet (I had to include this because it's thebest clarinet piece EVER)

Ok now on to the questions.

01. Which song do you prefer, #1 or #40? Depends on my mood, but probably 1.
02. Have you ever listened to #12 continuously on repeat? Maybe in high school, but I don't remember ever doing so.
03. What album is #26 from? Jagged Little Pill
04. What do you think about the artist who did #15? Well, NIN is good workout music or for when your pissed off. Although I don't really ascribe to any of Reznor's outlook on life, he's very talented musically (I think), not to mention hot.
05. Is #19 one of your favorite songs? No, but it is on one of my favorite albums
06. Who does #38 (Eclipse - Be Happy (Brisk & Vagabond Remix)) remind you of?
I'm not sure.
07. Does #20 have better lyrics or music? Seeing as this one's not pop music, I dont' think they can really be separated...but I'm not sure what the translation from the Latin is here, so I'll jsut say music to play it safe.
08. Do any of your friends like #3? Heck yeah. A good many, probably.
09. Is #33 from a movie soundtrack? Not that I know of.
10. Is #18 overplayed on the radio? I don't listen to the radio, but I'm sure some stations play it.
11. What does #21 remind you of? Freshman year of college.
12. Which song do you prefer, or #22 ? 5 definitely. Although 22 is good, as is Johnny Cash's remake.
13. What album is #17 from? look at the list.
14. When did you first hear #39? Well, I was probably at Bear Creek, so probably in eight of ninth grade, so almost 10 years ago (sheesh now I feel old)
15. When did you first hear #7? Last year.
16. What genre is #8 ? Rock.
17. Do any of your friends like #14? Maybe my mom. Don't know if my friends even know this album exists.
18. What color does #4 remind you of? Purple or blue I guess.
19. Have you ever blasted #11 on your stereo? Well, I don't have a stereo. But if I I've never blasted this anywhere. It would be cool to blast on a car stereo though when driving slowly down the street.
20. What genre is #37? Acoustic Rock
21. Can you play #13 on any instrument? Never tried.
22. What is your favorite lyric from #30? No clue.
23. What is your favorite lyric from #23? if you have been running too, stop now in your tracks, turn again to the one in you, put your burden on his back.
24. Would you recommend #24 to your friends? Sure, but I dont think they would listen to it.
25. Is #2 a good song to dance to? Nope. I'd like to see someone try though.
26. Have you ever heard #16 on the radio? On the oldies station.
27. Is #32 more of a "nighttime" or "daytime" song? Either I guess.
28. Does #36 have any special meaning to you? Not really.
29. Do any of your friends like #31 ? Probably not. I don't even like it that much.
30. Is #25 a fast or slow song? Slow.
31. Is #35 a happy or sad song? Happy, but in a melancholy kinda way.
32. What is one of your favorite lyrics from #9? It's U2, therefore it's all good.
33. Is #34 (better to listen to alone or with friends? With friends, preferably with beer involved.
34. When did you first hear #27? Oh man...1998 I think.
35. Name 3 other songs by the artist who did #29? The Marlborogh Canticles, Ecce Homo, and he did a mass that's pretty nice.
36. Do you know all the words to #6? Yep.
37. Does #28 (have better lyrics or music? About the same I think, but if I had to choose I'd say music (I'll almost always choose music over lyrics)
38. What album is #10 from? Parachutes.

Well, that's all folks. Just thought I would waste some of my time and yours with this fun little diversion...