‘Dad, Is Santa Real?’

We know the answer, but our kids likely don’t. I have a two-year-old and a four year-old, so they certainly do not. They are smart, and like any kids, they ask tons of questions. I took a personal oath early to tell them the truth. That’s why this issue has been so difficult for me.

Santa doesn’t add up. Our narrative gives us more questions than answers. Kids are supposed to simply accept this story, with very little evidence. Except perhaps the most important of all: presents. So we take these young people who are most vulnerable and moldable, and indoctrinate them in a lie. Why?

I want my kids to think. I want them to ask questions. And I want to be able to tell them the truth.

But they could tell their friends. Yes, they could. It sounds terrible, but is it? Is it bad that your child would learn that a fairy tale was a fairy tale from my child? I think the faster we are to sort out the part where people’s feelings matter more than the truth, we get to the bottom, and our kids begin to grow.

I have no doubt that my four year-old would play along knowing Santa is ‘pretend.’ They imagine all the time. Is it so ludicrous to think that they could deal with this simple truth?

The silver lining is the belief in something you cannot see. In the Christian worldview, this is what we call faith. But I simply do not what my kids to have faith in something that they have no reason to believe.

What if my kid tells your kid Jesus exists? It’s something that she and I believe is true, but you don’t necessarily believe. The point here is to have a discussion. To figure out which is more justified, belief or non-belief. If we can’t discuss what we believe and why we believe it, what are we doing?

I’ll hold off telling her for now. But I don’t know how long I’ll last.

Keep Worse Records

  1. God is love.  1 John 4:16
  2. It [love] keeps no record of wrongs.  I Corinthians 13:1
  3. So God keeps no record of wrongs. Fair enough. But what about loving myself? 

We’re supposed to ‘love our neighbors as we love ourselves. (Mark 12:31)’ Thus, part of loving ourselves is keeping no record of wrongs.

I think this is one of the things separating me from true happiness. I live in a delicate place in between worry and regret. As soon as I’m done worrying about what the right thing to do is, I start either regretting what I decided or doubting that what I did was right. It’s a no-win situation.

But if I try to love myself, I must keep no record of wrongs. I have to know that my sins are forgiven. This, there is no reason to worry about making a mistake. It’s not that we shouldn’t avoid paths that lead us away from God, quite the opposite.

So not only does God keep no record of wrongs, I shouldn’t either. For my own sanity, and because I think the Bible alludes to this as well.

He Has Done it

“My God, My God, why have you forsaken me?” Jesus’ last words on the cross have stuck in my mind for years. Yesterday, I was watching a debate between Jimmy Akin and Bart Ehrman about the reliability of the Gospels, when I heard that Jesus was simply quoting Psalm 22 when he spoke these last words.

And yes, this Psalm is very appropriate. Jimmy Akin talks about it in the debate.

My point here is as simple as it is unqualified. I think that perhaps Jesus spoke only these first words of the Psalm so we would be led to the last words of the same Psalm: “He has done it.”

That may be the most important theme of the Bible, certainly the New Testament. He overcame sin and death gave us eternal communion with God.

Maybe it’s just a coincidence, but I think it may at least be an Easter Egg left to shed light on the situation. Jesus knew that he had done it.

i Step onto the Air

I stand on an edge, looking down
Unsure of what I see
Beneath me, a blur
Something overtakes me
I step onto the air, unsure
With seconds to think
My mind is black and white
I blink
Not fearful of death
Scared of what’s next
Saved or damned
Unclear, uncertain
Heaven or hell
I obsess,
Then reassess
Am I unworthy,
Or unwilling
Justified or guilty
Apostate or regenerate
Falling faster
I become peaceful in doubt
Accepting my fate
A smile on my mouth
My final moment,
Fear creeps back in
My frequent opponent
Finds his place again
At least now I will know
Where I will go
After my last breath
and death,
Up or down below.

I am a Mirage

The truth doesn’t hit me fast
I’m lost for words, for meaning
Trapped in a sea of emotion
Locked and chained
Behind empty words
A memory gone and a future fading
Playing a game I don’t understand
For God knows how long
I’m a mirage in a desert
Fading with every step
Future unknown, walking fast
Only certain the sight won’t last

Hanging by a Thread

I stare at tomorrow
With nothing but dread
Yesterday looks like today
And today, tomorrow
And without delay
Slumber becomes sorrow
Shame wakes me late
I can’t function,
I hesitate
Lurching onward,
Grasping on a strand
Of hope, of light,
How much more can I stand?
The loop continues
As I grow older and weary
I wonder if my soul is sold
And I can no longer see clearly
The walls narrow now
Nearly crushing me within
But I’ll stay and make may way
As long as I can.

The Dawn Fog

The spark once surged in my mind
Racing from this to that
Relentless, rapid
Ravenous and curious
Seeking nothing but truth
The spark departed
And fog moved in
To cloud my judgment
To silence my voice
I try to ignite it myself
But I seem to have no choice
Manufactured thoughts
Rehearsed speech
Who am I?
I can’t be me.
Am I living a lie?
Or fighting the flesh?
Is this the good fight?
Or a hot mess?
The worst is a sentence
That starts from the heart
The next words never come
Nothing makes sense
I try to improvise
And react in self defense
But I know that I’m impaired
I’m scared.
Should I open my mouth?
Does anyone care?

Electric Thoughts

I have some personal experience with intrusive thoughts. There were times in my life where I have been overcome with thoughts that were not my own. It’s terrifying, especially when the advisors at my disposal just believed that I was completely losing touch with reality. But wait…in the Christian worldview, spirits exist. And Paul even says that we should ‘test the spirits.’ So not only do they exist, but we should communicate with them, and figure out whether they come from God or not. In short, the spirit world can communicate with us.

Neurologists can stimulate different areas of the brain and trigger thoughts. My only thought here is that if a doctor can do this with a probe why couldn’t spirits? If the brain is so altered, surely God [or spirits] could plant thoughts. (A Thousand Brains, p. 37)

And honestly, I think this is how the spirit world works, in part. A spirit would be an entity with a probe of sorts. The inception of thoughts would be plausible.

I say this to say that the statement that ‘thoughts are simply electric activity of the brain’ may very well be true, but the source of that electric activity is the question. If a doctor can simulate thoughts during surgery, surely an all-knowing creator could simulate thoughts as well.

I’d also like to reference the boy that Jesus cured of epilepsy in the New Testament. We are told that the cause of the epilepsy is a spirit. But does that jive with what we know about seizures?

We can induce seizures with electric brain stimulation. If seizures are simply electric charge on the brain, and the spirit world can manifest itself by way of electricity, I think it would follow that spirits could cause epilepsy. I am not saying that all epilepsy is caused by spirits. Or that all spirits cause epilepsy. What I do know is that both of these things are true, and this is how I reconcile them.

TLDR: Thoughts are electrical activity. Seizures are electrical activity. Spirits can plant thoughts, therefore, spirits can cause seizures. And if we can remove spirits in these cases, we can remove the seizures.

The Explanatory Power of the Christian Worldview in Mental Illness

Essentially we don’t know how the brain works. We can’t cure neurological diseases. We can’t cure all depression. We can’t really improve intelligence.

But what if a worldview has an untapped resource of explanation? Christian theism offers just that. Although it seems farfetched, and it is slightly terrifying.

Anyways, in Christianity humans are the battlefield. Constantly encountering spirits. And in this spiritual world, we are introduced to the explanatory power of the Christian worldview in the area of psychology.

We know that the chemical imbalance theory is likely false. What if depression is caused by a spirit of some sort? More importantly, what if Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s are explained by the spirit world?

What’s more important is that in subscribing to this model, we no longer need explanations about miracle healings of Alzheimer’s, because we know that if the presence of a spirit is causing the malady, the absence of it would lead to a miracle healing.

Not to mention, probably the scariest part: schizophrenia. If there is a spirit world, people that hear voices are actually hearing spirits. And we know that spirits can be cast out. Thus, schizophrenia is curable. But not by any pill or treatment, by the sovereign grace of God. Thus, the unexpected mitigation of this disease becomes less farfetched and more realistic.

So everywhere we look at the world, Christianity has answers, including the human mind. Perhaps the best answer to some of the biggest questions of medicine and science have been right under our nose this whole time. Maybe our biggest problem was trying to reconcile the complete with the incomplete, trying to merge modern psychology and psychiatry with the Christian narrative.

The Eye as A LED

As I theorized in Hawking Eye Radiation, I think there are some good reasons to believe that the eye produces light. The question becomes, ‘how does it produce this light?’

I learned recently that LEDs act as light sensors when turned off. I think that this could be the way that the eye works. I don’t mean how the eye works in the traditional sense, but how this potential added sense could be explained.

If the eye produces light during normal hours, even if it is a relatively small amount, perhaps the light shuts off at a certain point each day. Maybe when we get tired. And if the eye shuts off when we get tired, current would flow through this light sensor, increasing the electric charge on the brain. And that would make the subject more susceptible to seizures.

Next, is to determine, if true, how this system works.