Friday, January 30, 2004

I was good to see my dad today, to run up and give him a big bear hug! I really do think there is no man as special as my dad!

As I came through the front door of my home in London, I was affectionately attacked by my three dogs; Molly, my happy drooling black lab, Gibson, my chubby little French pooch and Leopold, the youngest and cuddliest of my 2 Jack Russell terriers. When I am welcomed like that, I wonder how I can live without them at school.

Upon entering our living area, I was instantly relaxed, the stress e..a….s…e…….d itself out as I snuggled under the blanket in front of the fire with my two pups snug on my lap and in the nook of my arm, Molly peacefully snoozing beside the warmth of the fire. In the low lamplight a bottle of wine sat ready to be poured in a glass and to be savoured s…l…o…w….l….y.

My mom was watching ‘Stargate' seasons, her latest movie watching addiction, after which she filled me in on her latest jokes.
Than, we popped in ‘Johnny English’ which I’ve been wanting to see and I took joy in seeing my father laugh his head off. (My dad’s a true Brit!) In fact, I was a bit concerned he’d have a heart attack he was laughing so hard; his cherry cheeks turned bright red like Santa Clause and I couldn’t help but giggle.

It’s hard to keep focused when you have a computer in your room. But one thing I will savour this weekend will be to wake up tomorrow morning; not to an alarm, but to the sun streaming in through my window, and perhaps a sneaky pooch that’s gotten into my room, kissed my fresh cheeks good morning and then settled in close to me. I’ll lie in bed and wipe the sleep sand out of my eyes slowly, reach for a book and j u s t r e a d. This I have missed! Christmas was all embracing in letting me indulge that luxury, now I may be spoiled for a single morning again! I will enjoy it to the fullest!

Tomorrow I plan to catch up on my readings for my classes, study Chagall, write a paper about Teurette’s Syndrome and a presentation on Phrenology. I will probably go with my best friend Lindsay to Timmy’s and enjoy a coffee that gets cold far too fast compared to the length of all we have to say to each other, and I hope to have an insightful conversation with my best friend from high school and brother in Christ, Matty.

God provides.

Thursday, January 29, 2004

Batter my Heart Three-Personed God, for You
John Donne, c.1610

Batter my heart, three-personed God, for You
As yet but knock, breathe, shine and seek to mend.
That I may rise and stand, o'erthrow me, and bend
Your force to break, blow, burn and make me new.
I, like an usurped town to another due,
Labor to admit You, but Oh! to no end.
Reason, Your vicorey in me, me should defend
But is captivated and proves weak or untrue
Yet dearly I love you, and would be loved fain,
But am betrothed unto Your enemy;
Divorce me, untie or break that knot again;
Take me to You, imprison me, for I,
Except you enthrall me, never shall be free,
Nor ever chaste, except you ravish me.
One day my emotionally promiscuous life may find this, if ever a 'prostitute' can be shown pure love by anyone other than her Heavenly Father.

~*My Milieu*~
As sharp capes reach out like fingers to the ocean,
my earth yearns for your waters.
Like a siren, luring sailors with song,
the voice inside me taunts my imagination,
no pedestrian one could resist.
Your deepness whispers secrets to me
that I just can't make out from this mountain,
My eyes can't catch the still pool's reflection,
So many ripples pulse over my mind.
You catch the light like diamonds,
and my eye in wonder as you dance.
I want to dive into you,
a grain of sand to be a pearl
when you be my milieu.
When you wash over me,
my scorched skin will glow as a jewel.
You'll draw me in as a stone is pulled in with each wave.
Slowly, you'll erode my hard shell,
my battle shield.
The nectors of my heart will flood and overflow into you,
As crimson as the sailor's delight
Unravelled, caught in your tide,
I'll drift through life at your side
No more fight
Till then, your breath stirs the leaves of my shade trees,
my roots dig deeper,
burning to feast at your table,
and my parched dunes tumble in the winds,
scouring for every oasis,
my dearest milieu.
~Jen Boddaert (Summer 2001)

Wednesday, January 28, 2004

My dear,
Why do you sit
Sit here,
amoungst these ashes?
Why do you not clean the soot from your brow?
Why do you constantly tear at your dreams,
ripping open the seams?
What is it that you feel you can do alone here,
in this cold place?
Why stray here to gather strength,
to find your face?
The stains and cracks in your once perfect mold you hide,
you come back now to where you once sacrificed.
An aged display of courage once burning bright
and love that glowed such embracing peace past sight
So sad to see your hollow eyes
Your heart drip with fears
Your soul's demise.
Will you take this star i've plucked for you,
like a sweetly scented lily bloom?
Will you peirce your wound and fix it there,
so it can purge your soul and refresh your whole?
Are you willing to let it take root
and coil itself into your deepest hidden spots
and burst through you with radiance beyond light?
Take this gem that I offer,
it's crystle fortune with it
and rekindle your hard stoned heart
to be in love again.
~Jen Boddaert (2000)

\Lu"cu*brate\, v. i. [imp. & p. p. Lucubrated; p. pr. & vb. n. Lucubrated.] [L. lucubratus, p. p. of lucubrare to work by lamplight, fr. lux light. See Light, n.] To study by candlelight or a lamp; to study by night.

That's me ;)
It feels so great to find a word that is a niche of your own. :)

Too bad I keep reading it dislexically as lubricate...hehe, that's not like me...
I am restless!
One day I will set out to travel the world. I will see many beautiful places and beautiful things and take photographs of them so I can share them with others. I will write many wonderful things that people will want to read. I will learn so much I will be in the midst of Bliss.

I'm so out of it.
I love my school work and yet I feel 'stuck' and it's hard to move. Someone take me out!
I want to be FREE!
I could have taken a cookie while everyone was there,
but I like sneaking up and snatching one while they are cooling,
it's more fun to eat them that way
It fascinates me that, at the lethal scourge of lion teeth and claw in Nero's 'game' at Colosseum, the Christians raised their voices in Glory to God!
How often do we forget to praise God through our struggling, and our suffering?

Tuesday, January 27, 2004

There's more to life!! REALLY!!!
Isn't it interesting how actions speak louder than words? You can talk and talk and talk and talk, but if you do not show them what you say, than the person may not truly believe you.
In the scientific method, we come to conclusions based on what we observe.
We understand people by thier actions, we think we know them based on thier behaviours. Let's be truthful, ACTIONS MATTER!

BUT, we can't judge them based on thier actions. We must realize that we aren't always right in what we observe. We are to care for them for who they REALLY are, as a person, unconditionally.

EVEN when they are acting in a way that makes people imply things about them, gives others the wrong impression of them, and then they completely deny they ever did anything to give that impression. And, blame you for it.

Monday, January 26, 2004

My jealous friend
2004-01-23 16:50
I empathize my love ;) Let's run away together to Rome and be married amoungst the crowns of antiquity. Surely that will be exciting!! Perhaps we should find a cloud and paddle off into the sea of cumulus! Or perhaps we could fly on the wings of eagles to some tropical Island where we will sit on a hut and eat coconut and pineapple to our heart's content. But, woh, who wouldn't want to dwell in a villa overlooking the Mediterranean and glide across it on a white crested wave to Africa. We could ride elephants across the badlands and hear the laughing hyenas with their drunken whooping in the night. Yes, drunk like Irish men on too much of their mother's milk. Yes my dear, let's do it! ;)
Luvs, guess who! ;)
Henri Nouwen pointed out that trusting God is an active choice, not a passive withdrawal from the pain and difficulty of life;

"As long as we have only a vague inner feeling of discontent with out present way of living, and only an indefinite desire for "things spiritual," our lives will continue to stagnate in a generalized melancholy. We often say, "I am not very happy. I am not content with the way my life is going. I am not really joyful or peaceful, but I just don't know how things can be different, and I guess I have to be realistic and accept my life as it is." It is this model of resignation that prevents us from actively searching for the life of the Spirit."

Thursday, January 22, 2004

Why is it that when a guy starts dating, all the other girls, no matter how significant to them, are no longer worthy of their attention?

Why is it that when people have crushes, they ignore the person, instead of really getting to know the person and finding out whether they really do love this person, or that they just like them as a friend? If you ignore the person, than you won't be able to ever be friends, or know if you may have a chance with that person!!

Why are so many people of the perspective that other people are 'potential mates' instead of getting to know people for who they really are and liking them genuinely and regardless?

Back to my hard Christian music.....

Wednesday, January 21, 2004

Mixed-up Media

I am not so conservative in my media watching as some Christians are. I am an artist myself and appeal to the drama in the expression of the human condition. But, I must ask how far is going too far? How can Christians be more discerning in the things they watch and observe daily, while not giving non-Christians the wrong impression?

I wish to take joy in the truth of the things I'm watching. This involves empathy in the human condition, and sympathy pertaining to those situations that reflect the human condition even if they do not appeal to you.
(For example, even though, as a Christian, you do not believe in sleeping around, it doesn't excuse that this is something that other people may struggle with and that it isn't so easy for them to just turn from it. So, instead of saying, "lets do away with all sex scenes in media", lets look more at the circumstance in which the scene is presented because perhaps it has a theme that is helpful to that person who struggles with promiscuity.)

My question concerns movies such as Eminem's newest movie and 'The Hours' and I will also include 'Frieda.' These movies in particular are glorified biographies that express raw negative aspects of the human condition. They are extreme cases, presenting blatant examples of suffering. It's likely someone is going to empathize with them as they are amplified expressions of the things people may come to deal with in life.
The initial reaction that some people come away with from these movies may either be that they felt moved and touched and empowered somehow (?), or they leave depressed, upset and feeling abused.
There's also the question of what is the long term affect? If we keep seeing movies like this, will we all be desensitized? Will we all be more aware of reality and therefore function with more vitality? Or are these artistic expressions encouraging people to dwell in the negative aspects of life? To glorify the dark side of life? (Ex. How many teens these days want to be like Eminem?)

How can we as Christians take a stand against the perversion of certain medias and for the truth resounding in others? What is the 'ruler' of discernment?

Monday, January 19, 2004


Twenty-Four -Switchfoot

24 oceans
24 skies
24 failures
24 tries
24 finds me
in 24th place
we're 24 dropouts at the end of the day
Life is not what i thought it was, 24 hrs ago
Still i'm singing Spirit take me up in arms with you
and i'm not who i thought i was 24 hrs ago
Still i'm singing Spirit take me up in arms with you

It's 24 reasons to admit that i'm wrong
with all my excuses still 24 strong

See i'm not copping
not copping out
not copping out!!!
When you're raising the dead in me
I am the second man
I am the second man now
I am the second man now
and your raising these ...
24 voices
with 24 hearts
all of my symphonies in 24 parts
but i want to be one today
centered in truth
I'm singing Spirit take me up in arms with you
You're raising the dead in me
I am the second man
I am the second man now
I am the second man now
And your raising the dead in me!

I want to see miracles
to see the world change
I wrestled the angel
for more than a name
for more than a feeling
for more than a cause
I'm singing Spirit take me up in arms with you

A song by Skillet;

I want to be locked in a cage,
I want to be strapped in a chair,
I want to be where you are,
if my insanity comes
Wrapped up inside your...
I want to break my legs
in case a thought to escape
keep the hammer out of my reach, if my pounding impulse comes
Wrapped up inside your arms
Locked up inside you
Hold me down cause I want to know you
You bring calm to my rage
You are life and I'm thirsting for you
Hold me, Hold me, Locked in a cage
I want to be caught by you
I want to be trapped in your arms
Your cage is rest for my bones

Wrapped up inside your arms
Locked up inside you
Hold me down cause i want to know you!!
You bring calm to my rage!!
You are life and i'm thirsting for you
Hold me, hold me
Locked in a cage

Friday, January 16, 2004

Textbook Aggression

MY PSY 341 prof happened to mention that the writer of our current text book readings has assumed that the Christian Church acquired things like communion, and the idea of blood sacrifice along with other ideas, from cult activities. This is complete nonsense since we know communion is described in the bible and is from the time of Christ. I would think it’s much more likely that a cult took Christian ideas to a perverted extreme. Well, or, perhaps the idea of blood sacrifice is a universal concept/symbol easily acquired by passionate groups of people; that only Christ may perfectly embody.

Reading my text for Research Methods I came across this blatant stab at Christians with the belief that the earth is made only a few thousand years ago. The only evidence for this side that the writer offers is that dinosaur bones must be rock formations that resemble bones (which definitely sounds ludicrous!) or remains of the victims of the Great Flood.
He says that the contrary evidence (carbon dating proves dinosaur bones are millions of years old) is “apparently interpreted to appear consistent with the belief.”
I wouldn’t say this writer is very learned in this topic. I’ve heard that the key argument for this issue is in fact that the method of carbon dating may not be completely accurate! Only if we spend a million years waiting to dig up a bone we buried will we truly know if the method of carbon dating really works accurately. It is not observable; it’s only calculated as a mathematic probability. Surely, that makes a large difference in the argument!

So, because something is not provable makes it right? Scientists are basing their ‘beliefs’ on theories, like the theory of evolution, these are things that cannot be proven! How is choosing these scientific theories not just as much a leap of faith as believing in Creation?

Look at the bones that were found as proof for the evolution of man from an ape; found in different parts of the world and there is no blatantly obvious link between what is a monkey to what is a man. How can we prove that some of the skeletons in between aren’t hunched little men with leprosy? Or that each of the skeletons are made up of all the same mammal if the bones were found in places some distance from each other?

I’d have to look into it all a bit more to completely understand where I stand, but these were things that I constantly was confronted with in high school and I regularly encountered people putting down Christians for either not believing in these things or that they would even think of questioning them. I sought out Christians and went to speaks which could help me understand the Christian’s side and came out believing that Christians had more evidence than the scientists gave them credit for. They call it belief-based Explanations, that there is no evidence to support the Christian claims, but it was my impression that the scientists had less evidence.

Anyways, the writer of the text also, in trying to make his point, very subtly, but undeniably admits that evolutionary biologists have stretched some of their observations to fit their hypothesis by saying “some simple assumptions about the rate of mutation in the genetic material allowed biologists to develop ‘family trees’ indicating how long ago the various species separated from one another.”

Arguing from another perspective, I could say he assumes that these Christians don’t believe in any type of evolution anyways.
Furthermore, he does not give the scientific Creationists any space to even find more evidence to back up their theories and perhaps do experimentation to prove their ideas. He gives the impression that these Creation Scientists are not submiting to the Tentativeness of their proposals as true scientists, that they are absolutists, which for one; is not true and for two; is also giving them the pompous impression that their theories are somehow superior or more scientific just because it doesn't involve a religion. Surely Christian Scientists are true scientists following the Scientific Method and are not all going to jump into taking on a specific idea as truth just because it fits into their belief system.
Also, it is not surprising to note that part of the Scientific Method is to take the explanation that is the simplest explanation (Parsimony). We have biases and we will lean towards evidence that is more preferable. Scientists will ignore data that doesn’t fit into supporting their hypothesis, it happens outside the Christian communities in areas that were thought to be valid experimentation just as well.

Ya, so,… reading that brought me back to some of my old high school angst… perhaps I’ll look deeper into these issues. In the meantime, my ears are open if any can correct me if I may be wrong here.

Thursday, January 15, 2004

Diary; Dec. 20, 2003
We struggle with this. Our usability is our worth. We try to be perfect for God, we forget that God will choose to use whoever He desires, He could use anyone. Why search for God’s favour when you already have it? There’s nothing wrong with striving to better ourselves, but God wants us to experience the life He’s given us, the gift He’s given us and the opportunities He’s given us with joy! This includes accepting that there will be pain, that we are only human and that we will sin and fail and have faults; but that these things do not affect the worth that God has put upon us with His unconditional love. You cannot be the person God wills you to be by trying to eliminate your faults, by trying to be something beyond your human capabilities, don’t be anxious, submit to God, empty yourself, go limp and then GET UP and take joy in the beautiful life around you!
It doesn’t matter how much you try to convince yourself to be ‘better.’ It is not that your efforts are in vain, God will surely bless you for seeking His Will, but you must remember that no matter what you do, your worth in God’s eyes will not change. He loves you deeper that your efforts. His plans for your life are bigger than your own.
Added later;
The next step! Claiming our spot in the kingdom of heaven! It is part of our role, now that we are in Christ, to joyfully take hold of our position as God’s child. We know we’re not worthy, our transformation is a GRACIOUS gift, but we must learn to allow the change and to delight in the truly wonderful thing God’s blessed us with! We are no longer alone, but part of a beautiful family! We are no longer in chains to fear, for God is always with us and is faithful to guide and provide. We no longer have complete despair at times, for God is able to bring joy into the deepest of sorrows.
How Awesome and Glorious is our Father God!!!
When we can accept and live joyfully in His Truth, God may work through us, perhaps without our even knowing exactly how. Thank God!

From my devotional Today; “A Women’s Journey to the Heart of God”-Cynthia Heald

Caught in the Act of Being Imperfect
The old self will pay any price to be loved and accepted. When we strive for great approval, when we maneuver people and circumstances to our benefit, we are saying a giant ‘yes’ to our old self. Then when we don’t get the recognition we think we deserve, we blame ourselves or become bitter towards others.
(When you feel like a single sock in a drawer full of pairs, or that you just don’t fit in, or that you just can’t get it right, remember), God loves and accepts you! Be reminded of the truth of His unconditional love. He looks at your heart. He accepts you no matter what. Is your journey, toward His heart? Or towards acceptance from others? Or yourself?
The old self is always ready to rear it’s ugly head and tell me I need to be perfect. What is the truth? I will never be perfect while I’m on my journey. I love Peter for following Jesus through his own failures, and I love Paul for confessing that he was the chief of all sinners. God knows that we are always in process.
What’s important to God is the how I respond when I’m confronted with inadequacies. Do I condemn myself? Do I blame others? Do I get mad at God for creating me this way? Is my significance bound up in being perfect for everyone? When thoughts like this assail me, I go to the One who knows and accepts me just the way I am. And He helps me discern how to respond appropriately, in attitude or action, in front of those who witness my shortcomings.
We are continually being transformed and moving towards conformity to Christ. Now that I am in Christ, I can ‘lay aside’ the self that demands perfection. I smiled when I saw this proclamation on a plaque; ”I’ve given up my quest for perfection- I’m shooting for five good minutes!”

Wednesday, January 14, 2004

Praise of Fra Angelico

In my Art History we are studying, in my opinion, the most exciting period of Art History; the Renaissance. Today we were introduced to Fra Angelico, a second generation Renaissance painter. I found him really inspirational as he was so genuinely a Christian who painted in the ‘Style Nouveau’ while situated in the heart of the scholarly humanistic Florence of the 15th Cent.
His work did not gain recognition until he had joined a monastery where he got his name for his angelic demeanor and manner of painting. He loved simply to paint and believed in God’s ability to work through him this way. His countenance was gentle and patient, he never got angry. He believed that to offer representation of God and His word, one must be in a relationship with God every day. He led a quiet withdrawn life, and found this to be the ideal life for those practicing painting.
One thing that astonishes me as an artist is that he never took up a brush without spending time in prayer. He’s said to have been so moved in painting his representation of the crucifixion that tears streamed down his face, and the expressions of the people at the foot of the cross took on the same pious reverence.

He dominated Italian painting from the 1430-1440s along with the extremely opposite scale personality of Fra Lippi who painted for recognition and money in order to go about satisfying his lusts and raping women! That’s not to say he isn’t a good painter, (He was mentor to Botticelli who’s art I ADORE!!) but, his art is lacking in piety and is very down to earth.
Proposed for the next DSM is 'Shopoholic.'
At first, this seemed to me more of a symptom than a syndrome. But, Sarah brought up that Obsessive Compulsive is also considered a symptom of say, Depression, and it's in the DSM. A good point, but Obsessive Compulsive can also be a disorder in itself. Can 'Shopaholic' be?
Is it the root of a deeper problem within the individual or a deeper problem within society? Either way, would this not make it eligible for the DSM? Would it be labeled as a type of Obsessive Compulsive disorder, or a symptom of it?

Tuesday, January 13, 2004

How far should we trust our instincts?

My art teacher has encouraged us to trust in our instincts. I struggle with this every day. Being in psychology, I wonder if intuition is a key element that most psychologists are gifted with and that is one reason why they can be helpful towards others as they are. But, my impression of my Research Methods text is that it tells me that intuition is only really helpful in helping one form a hypothesis, not in proving it. That’s what the Scientific Method is for. Anyways,…
Particular people tell me I can read their mind. I astonish them with my insight into knowing what they think without them having to tell me. This is not always the case, let me tell you, I AM NOT A MIND READER like they like to think. And, quite often I’m sure I am quite false in the things that I sense. Sometimes, in asking questions, I find I was on the wrong track. But, none the less, I do tend to know things about people that they don’t realize that I know, it’s like I have this extra sense that sometimes tells me other people’s secrets. Sometimes it is not so fun to know these things!!!! And I find myself wondering how many of the things I sense are accurate or not. When one of my senses is confirmed, I consciously can confirm my intuition was correct and pat myself on the back. But, what of those ideas that come to mind that aren’t confirmed? Some of them hover around like a ghost, only to change and morph into others. How far can I trust these senses? Did it really change, or was it even there at all? This is why I may sometimes hesitate to write perhaps, in fear that something I sense may not be truth.

Which brings me to the subject of criticism. People say “You are your own worst critic.” Perhaps, but when all my artwork from high school ends up in the dumpster by incompetent teachers at the end of the school year, I find it difficult to blame myself for my hesitation in doing my art.
Funny, Rob likes to get into the Art of War, well, my ball game is the ‘War of Art’, a book I purchased recently to help me with my struggle.
Just as I find myself hesitating at the nakedness of my words on the page; I hesitate to scar the page with my conte, the canvas with my brush. There is much to be expressed and yet, one must have the creativity and mode of expression in order to do it satisfactorily. The work I do, I need to do, whether I like it or not, this combination causes such a frustration that I vision gashing the materials to pieces with a steak knife. But of course, that wouldn’t be productive, and I would have wasted quite a bit of money…I would say I am artistic, and perhaps a bit dramatic, but not so creative. Something to work on I suppose…
Criticism can be damaging. Just the process of critique can be an overwhelming experience. Producing pieces so that people can look them over and judge them and in the end give you a grade on a scale, a scale of what? How do you mark art anyways?
Should critique be done at a high school level when people are developing their talents and growing as artists?
Can’t we make art for the love of making art!?
This I find I have a chance to do this semester, it is an exciting and challenging process.
Trust your instincts,…but how far?
I have not practiced art enough on my own, outside of class, to be versed in my own style, to understand my own hand and then to learn to trust it.
Trusting in oneself is needed before one takes the plunge. How else will we learn if we don’t try and see what comes of it? It is a process and a journey of exploration and experimentation. There is a joy in this that can be swayed or nurtured through criticism.

Ones instincts (or intuition) are biased, have particular perspective, have particular values and may be based on certain experiences. I am much freer to express them artistically, (though I believe we should still be considerate of the reaction to our work) than in a psychological/social context, in which it’s ideal to be as objective as one can be. When I find myself getting confused I remember a bible verse that caught me once;
Proverbs 28:26 “A person is a fool to trust himself! But those who use God’s wisdom are safe.”
And found this one, which keeps me humble;
Proverbs 3:5-7 “Perhaps you want favor with both God and people. You might want to be known for good judgement and common sense. If so, then trust the Lord with all your heart. Don’t ever trust yourself. In all you do, put God first. He will direct you and crown your efforts with success. Don’t be proud and sure of your own wisdom. Instead, trust and respect the Lord.”