Thursday, May 18, 2006

On DVC and Judas...

.:Today's LSS:.

Watch the wacky video and find out why this is my LSS... heh. Those Chinese dudes are crazy.

As Long As you Love Me
by The Backstreet Boys

Although loneliness has always been a friend of mine
I'm leavin' my life in your hands
People say I'm crazy and that I am blind
Risking it all in a glance
And how you got me blind is still a mystery
I can't get you out of my head
Don't care what is written in your history
As long as you're here with me

I don't care who you are
Where you're from
What you did
As long as you love me
Who you are
Where you're from
Don't care what you did
As long as you love me

Every little thing that you have said and done
Feels like it's deep within me
Doesn't really matter if you're on the run
It seems like we're meant to be

(Repeat Chorus)

I've tried to hide it so that no one knows
But I guess it shows
When you look into my eyes
What you did and where you're comin from
I don't care, as long as you love me, baby

(Repeat Chorus 2x)

.:Holy Cow!!!:.

The Cavaliers now lead the series at 3-2!!!

Go Lebron! Go Cavs!

That's taking things one game a time, all right.

I hope Rasheed Wallace eats all his words by the end of the series. He keeps on talking the Cavs down, and after two guarantees, and I quote:

I know we’re going to win it. We’re going to bust their ass. Tomorrow night is the last game here in this building for this year.

Y’all can quote me, put it back page, front page, whatever. They can send whoever they want to send. I know the crew I think they’re going to send. But it don’t matter. I know we can do it, and they know we can do it. We know what we’ve got to do.
(Pre-Game 4)


I ain’t worried about these cats. There’s no way in hell they beat us in a series. They played well. I give them credit. We lost. We shot thirty percent, and they had to play their best to beat us. (Pre-Game 5)

So, Mr. Big Mouth. Whatcha got to say this time?

Miami vs. Cavs? I don't care who wins by then. We're going to have an exciting finals is all that matters, if Cavs and Suns win. =P

.:The Gospel Of Judas: A Closer Look:.

As a pluralist, I have had my share of running into belief systems completely different from mine, but I have managed to find it rather easy to be not only tolerant but even open-minded of such systems. With the glaring exception of Scientology, I've realized that most other belief systems are all right when it comes to their core teachings. On paper, this or that belief system has only good will at heart. In practice, the issue arises. Scientology differs from that, but I'll talk about it in a while and stick to the heading now.

The Gospel of Judas is no different for me, as far as a different way of looking at things, which, at its heart, still holds water. You see, what a lot of people who subscribe to the bible fail to realize is that it is very likely that the four Gospels in the Bible, Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John, were not written by the named apostles. Furthermore, the means by which the canonicity of these four gospels were upheld was more arbitrary than anything else.

In an effort to combat the “heresies” of the Gnostic Christians, the Orthodox Christians, mainly spearheaded by the Bishop Iranaeus, have decreed only Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John as the Gospels that the Christians must adhere to, and while believing in a man who can raise the dead, resurrect himself, walk on water, and change water into wine presupposes a belief in divine inspiration as well, this belief leads to a double-edged sword, mainly for non-Catholics.

You see, Iranaeus was a clear ally of the Bishop of Rome. In some of his writings, he has gone as far as to acknowledge the authority of the papacy, essentially making him an ally of what would eventually be recognized as the Roman Catholic Church. Now, the very same man made the decision as to which Gospels belonged in scripture. Are we to conveniently ignore his allegiance to Rome and just say that he had a “one-time big-time” inspiration, assuming we're not Catholic? Or does that mean that if we can count on him to tell us which Gospels belong, then we can count on him on other things? Because if we push for the former, what becomes clear is that we are being very arbitrary of what we select from the Catholic tradition. Why would non-Catholics not question the Gospels selected by one whose allegiance is with Rome?

Now, that being said, I personally see no need to debunk the Gospel of Judas. It is a unique and different take on the matter, albeit more likely to be allegorical than historical (As the Gospel of John sometimes seems like, in contrast to the three Synoptic Gospels.). Nonetheless, it is still a very interesting viewpoint, and one that may or may not be true, in my opinion. And even if it be false, it still has its own merits in and by itself. I would be wont to believe that such Gospels, from the Gospel of Judas to the Gospel of Thomas, were written with malicious intent to mislead Christians back then or now.

Gospels back then were written as the good news. The good news, clearly, has taken many different forms, and one cannot deny the good intentions of whoever wrote the other Gospels, although their divine inspiration may come into question (As the four other Gospels may, in my opinion, if you still hold to the Iranaeus bit.).

The Gospel of Judas was very unique from other Gospels in that it completely retells Christ's betrayal by Judas and turns Judas from a traitor to a reluctant hero who betrayed Christ upon Christ's orders because only he understood Christ's true purpose. The Gnostics were notorious for their notion of duality, particularly in how they view the spirit as divine and the body as human, and so believe that only through death can the spark of the divine in one's self be possibly unlocked. While I don't necessarily subscribe to this point of view, it has its merits, taking root from the Platonic Eidos, that the body is merely the copy of the spirit, the ideal, in this sense.

Now, Judas realized this, and as such is supposedly the favored apostle. Furthermore, the betrayal was something he had to do not only to be able to complete Christ's journey into unlocking the Divine, but also to cement his prominence among the apostles as the favored one.

Because the Gospel of Judas ends at Christ's betrayal, it becomes more and more about the relationship between Judas and Jesus than it is about the actual death and resurrection. Fairly odd for a Gospel, but that also means that it never talks about Judas' suicide, which is neither confirmed nor denied in this Gospel.

The texts are authentic. In the same way that biblical scholars and even priests no longer attempt to debunk the theory of evolution upon realizing the high likelihood that the creation story is more of a legend than an actual account of how the world was truly created, the texts of the Gospel of Judas cannot just be dismissed as an elaborate hoax. Now, whether or not the texts are divinely inspired is another matter, but as far as I'm concerned, what matters is that we are capable of accessing such basic information, and realizing for ourselves that this is a point of view that was once held by some people, which, while may or may not be true, is still not without its own merits.

Personally, I do not believe in this kind of duality. I do not automatically denounce the body as evil and the spirit as good. It doesn't work that way for me. However, I do believe that there is a spark of the Divine in everyone, and it does take some measure of effort to unlock it. I do not think that one must die in order for the Divine spark to be unlocked, but rather, it must be unlocked in this life. No matter how despicable, no matter how evil a person may be, there is still a spark there somewhere. It's just unfortunate that only few can ever find it, and harness it for the betterment of the self, and ultimately, the entirety of humanity.

Thinking upon the Gospel of Judas has given me a deeper appreciation for the goodness within everybody. It reaffirms my belief in having faith in humanity as a whole. That no matter how many times humanity may apparently fail me, it does not mean it will fail me all the time, nor does it mean to fail me. Given the limits of humanity, I am willing to appreciate intentionality far more than usual.

It's been said before, that in these times, there can be but only one mission: to be the miracle.

Got miracle?

.:Da Vinci Code: An Exercise In Futility:.

People have been walking out of theaters in early screenings of the Da Vinci Code the past few days.

And religious conviction has nothing to do with it at all.

Word is going around that the movie is clumsy and plodding, and while people try to protest to have it banned, they kinda lose sight of more important things, like, oh... poverty.

Yes, I know I hate that argument myself (Conjures memories of the Yan Ang Pinay fiasco.), but there's a difference between a worthy cause of uplifting the Filipina reputation and, well, trying to say that a work of fiction is not true.

How about that? Fiction isn't true! No crud, Sherlock.

The Opus Dei is awaiting the film with bated breath. Other Christian groups are actually holding screenings of the movie with Bible studies afterwards to analyze the point of the film and the gnostic point of view.

So instead of using a point of controversy which is classified as fiction to further the faith, why are we going to supress it and completely lose what we stand to gain? Isn't that a show of regressive, lazy thinking? What? The brilliant minds who want this movie banned aren't capable of correcting the things that they take as lies in the film? Have they even read the book, or are they just relying on hearsay? This was practically the same piece of lazy counter-evangelization that has gotten an otherwise boring movie like "The Last Temptation Of Christ" more attention than it ever deserved.

Let the people who want to see it see it. Let them decide for themselves if they will believe what they see, or if they will get to the bottom of it and realize that regardless of the facts, your relationship with the one whom you call "God" doesn't boil down to what historical facts about His life happen to be there, or whether or not he got it on with a woman who may or may not have been a prostitute.

Rather, the crux of your relationship with the one whom you call "God", if you are Christian, is that you believe He has saved you, and if He truly is God, you have no right to question what He may have done in His life, for He would know far, far better than you.

Besides, forget the fictional (Or non-fictional, for the conspiracy theorists.) allegations about Christ. Think of those who were truly demeaned in this movie.

According to the spokesman of the Albino Anti-Defamation League, there have been 68 films since 1960 to feature evil albinos. Tsk, tsk. For shame!

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