Five Senses.

Here’s a test for you. Take out a sheet of paper, a #2 pencil or your favorite paper mate pen and write down these words: Eyes, Ears, Nose, Mouth, and Touch. Now choose one. Choose your favorite.  The one you like the most. Is it your nose because you love the aroma of roses. Is it your mouth that continually smiles and tastes the sweet tea? Is it the sight of a rainbow. Is it your skin so smooth and soft? Or, do you hate your ears because they stick out too far? Or, do you really hate your nose because it reminds you of a camel’s back?

Choose the one you’d agree to have disabled, removed so you could not see, could not hear, could not speak, could not smell or touch. Which one would you agree to do without? Place a big X over that word. Now, imagine what everyday life would be without that sense. No eyes seeing the moon, without your ears to hear your favorite words, without your nose to smell, minus your mouth to taste and smile, or without that sense of feeling you get when you scratch your back.

Which would it be? The sense of touch, smell, sight, taste or hearing?

Look at the animals; at your pet dog, your pussycat, the parakeet locked in the cage, your hamster running on the circular treadmill, at the horse in the barn, at your gold-fish tank. All of these creatures must be fed each day, provided with water, and a place to rest and play. The dog barks, the cat meows, the bird mimic your words, the hamster, well, I’ve never been around any, so I’m not aware of the sounds they make, and the goldfish no voice I assume. Every one of them has eyes, ears, a nose, a mouth or beak to eat with, and yes, that parakeet would not find the perch to stand on without that sense of touch.

Say something drastic happened to you. Perhaps a car wreck, a fist fight with a neighbor, the subway crashed, or you were in a train wreck. The flight to LA caught fire and had to land in the desert of New Mexico, a tornado tore the roof off your house, or an Alien broke through your back door demanding all five; eyes, ears, nose, mouth, and ability to feel the touch.  They are needed by the aliens to replicate the likeness of humans. Imagine any kind of scenario that would remove one of those five elements.  Choose the one you’d keep, choose the two you deem impossible to live without, the three or four most important ones to you. Or if you’re lucky, the Alien would only demand one be removed from you. Your choice, and then he’d go to your neighbors home.

Which would it be?

No doubt, you’ve seen a blind person navigating the street with a white stick he uses to strike across the path in front that he cannot see. You stop and talk, and his eyes appear to be looking out into space. He hears you wink and the honks of vehicles. He can hear the click of the red light changing to green. He can smell your perfume and is able to talk back to you. He just can’t see you. He can touch the shape of your face, feeling the soft smooth or the rough, wrinkled hands.  Would you willingly give the alien your eyes, if you could keep the other four, or beg or bargain with him to choose something else?

How about the person who’s born deaf, the veteran who lost his ears, or the aged man who operated loud, noisy machinery most of his life without ear muffs, slowly losing that ability to clearly understand words spoken in a restaurant or a small room where the sounds vibrate off the smooth walls. That’s my dilemma. Yes, there are hearing aids that magnify sounds, but it’s still not as those ears were designed to operate. No longer can I hear a pin drop. I could learn to read lips. I could learn sign language. Sure, when watching TV, I can choose closed captioning. Spending an evening out at the theater is useless. Would you give the Alien your ears?

The two nostrils of your nose enable you to smell the rose or choose which perfume you’d like best. You can inhale the aroma steaming off the dinner plate. And, also those smells you find visiting a farmers outhouse. Put a clothespin over your nostrils, and your mouth is forced open to breathe in the fresh air. Okay, Alien, you can have the nose. I can still breathe and smelling a rose is no big thing to me, but would the shape of my nose still be there? Huh? Would you enjoy looking in the mirror and see just smooth skin between your cheekbones?

Have you ever seen a person without a mouth? Just a continuation of the skin from the nose to chin? Nope. No doubt you’ve seen various shapes to the upper or lower lips. The mouth provides us the ability to smile exposing the white teeth. It can grin, and cause the lips to droop and the tongue to stick out when you wish to express your emotion to a friend you suddenly hate. With the mouth, you separate the two lips and with the teeth chew your food. The ability to eat and drink that coffee first thing in the morning would be removed. You exhale and breathe through those two separated lips. You taste that java and the roasted bar-b-que hot dog, and the, oooh, hot spicy jalapeno pepper. The words you speak are propelled out of your mouth. Would you give it up? The Alien wants your mouth. Tough buddy, get one of those needles inserted into a vein to provide you with sustaining food.

Hey neighbor, the Alien greets you and holds you down and removes the sense of touch as you swap the fly. No big deal, or is it? Now, you wonder what’s going on as you walk barefooted to the Living room and you can’t feel the difference between soft carpet and the hard slippery ceramic tile you so carefully placed together.  You raise your hand against the wall to help your balance, hearing a thug. Your fingers do not sense the difference between cotton fleece or sandpaper, the hot pan or ice cubes. You want to operate the remote that your hand is holding and you’ve got to look to see if it’s really in your hand. You turn on the water faucet not knowing when the water is cold or blistering hot. You spend some time outside breathing in the steaming hot 105-degree afternoon wondering why the sweat is pouring off your forehead. You go to scratch the itching back but, did your hand reach the spot. You lay down in bed and pull the covers over. You see it over your shoulder, but you don’t feel the warmth and comfort. You jump into the pool and see it splash, but can not sense the touch of the cool water surrounding you.

Unlike the others, the sense of touch is without a single physical object like the nose, your ears, eyes, or mouth. It’s not confined to just your fingertips, the skin of your cheeks feeling the raindrops, or your ankles being cooled in the rushing waters of the creek.

“Nope, sorry,” the Alien says, “but we’re going to disable all those itty bitty nerves at the roots so we can finish our project. We’re taking that sense of touch, as you did not choose one of the others.?”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Watching a game.

Watching a ball-game the other evening as the right fielder was running hard to his left to catch a fly ball, the movements of his legs caught my attention, and my utter amazement. How does he do that? How do his legs know they must rotate like that, at that speed and in that direction? Two of those legs coming off the hip bone moving at opposing times: one leg forward, the other leg behind the torso, as the front foot lands on the ground pushing the spikes on the bottom of his shoes against the ground and pulling back causing the large thigh bone to rotate back which brings the rear leg forward, the hip bone moving back and forth, left and right.

Was the outfielder thinking along the way? Now the left, the right, left, right, left, let’s go legs, knees move, stretch out more, faster, faster more speed. There it is, I see the ball coming, it’s starting to come down.  Move legs, faster, faster, toes grab the ground and push.  Okay, now the left arm; stretch out all the way, shoulders turn a bit toward the infield, stretch some more arm. Yeah, you can do it, just a bit more. Okay good, now to the hand in the glove; here it comes, rotate palm up some but not too far, fingers open the glove and catch, now close it tight. You got it. Good work body. It’s ok slide along the grass a bit. Thank you. The coach, the teammates thank you. We won.

Unbelievable pieces of equipment. One long thick bone covered by muscles and tissue rotating off his hip connecting to a knee apparatus that connects to another tissue and muscle covering double bones connecting to an ankle which feeds the foot bones connecting to the toes. Two of those opposite mechanical apparatuses moving at the same precise cadence together. Truly amazing how this physical body of ours is put together.

 

When I was just a kid we used to sing a song.

The toe bone’s connected to the foot bone,
The foot bone’s connected to the ankle bone,
The ankle bone’s connected to the leg bone,
Now shake dem skeleton bones!

The leg bone’s connected to the knee bone,
The knee bone’s connected to the thigh bone,
The thigh bone’s connected to the hip bone,
Now shake dem skeleton bones!

Scientists, biologists have it all mapped out how these things work. How the muscles and skeletal bones operate around the joints. They tell us how to use the legs properly. They tell us what could happen if they are abused or if we fall and break one of those bones. They’re quick to inform us of our need to exercise the joints and muscles, not just the leg bones, but this entire physical body of ours that the entire human population is similarly equipped with. They also point out the similarities of our bones with those of horses, cows, monkeys, apes and elephants. How often has a horse, whose legs are so thin seemly lacking in muscle tissue around the bone fall down and break a leg? Or, monkeys as they swing from tree to tree missing a branch falling 20 feet to the ground resulting in a broken hip bone? Have any elephants been found unable to walk because of a broken leg. Our legs are designed for this size body, not the body of an elephant, or a Chimp.

They tell us it’s our brain muscle that sends super-fast signals to these muscular legs to get to work, run and catch that ball . . . quickly. The brain? Another muscle? No, not just another muscle, but a mass, like billions of neurons with possibly trillions of connections working together sending signals received by the eyes, the ears, our sense of smell and touch sending those signals to the different parts of the body to do something. The following fact as explained by the scientists is interesting to me. The left side of this brain sends signals controlling the functions of the right side of the body while the right part sends the signals on how the muscles and bones of the left side of the body should operate, both using the one central spinal cord next to our back bone.

But, all these well-educated scientists leave out the why part and leave out the how was all this designed in the first place. They agree that it was a process of evolution over millions or billions of years as these different parts merged together because of a necessity to functionally operate. Two legs are better than one. One spinal cord can handle it. Five fingers are better than three or four. Two eyes closer together than where the elephant’s eyes are located are better. Wow, if only another eye was situated behind the head what a difference in sight that would be. The knee joints should only move the lower leg up and backwards. Strong bones protecting the heart muscle sending a red substance to nourish the body with fluid, and lungs that continually breathe in and out. And, we’ve got to nourish this body with food on a daily basis, which is digested by a stomach sending strength throughout and yes, discharging un-needed parts of that food through a long winding tube and out of the body. Hmm? And then this brain that recognizes sight and sound is also very curious about the hows and whys things work as our reasoning ability has invented modern technology, designing this computer by combining millions of 1’s and O’s into certain configurations, algorithms.  Yes, THE designer has imagined and assembled all these parts together into one physical body very different than the animal world.

We can catch a ball flying thru the air.

 

Alone with un-familar faces.

The other day as I sat having breakfast in the assembly hall of a large church in Houston, TX, I was  looking over the crowd, hundreds from all over the country in small groups enjoying the chatter over the eggs, a slice of sausage, a biscuit with gravy, I caught myself scanning from one to another wanting to know if there was anyone present I would or could recognize. Looking at their facial composition, skin tones from light to pitch dark, looking at the eyes and the raised brows above, ripples, the shapes of the nose, mouth and chin, the cheek bones and crevices flowing out from the eyes, from the sides of the nose down to edges of their lips, by their head of hair hiding or circling the ears, mustaches and beards, whether they were wearing glasses or still had good eyesight. All those unique features within an average ovalish area of 8 to 9” by 5 or 6”. There were many older folks close to or in retirement, many in the 50’s pushing the golden years, those still young enough that their hair was without grey streaks, 20’s to 30’s, teens and elementary children too were eating away before the morning devotional.

Nope, I did not recognize anyone. Hundreds of un-familiar faces.

My mind then wondered, how is this, why is this? Hundreds of people, each with totally different facial features contained within such a small oval shape.  Look at the features of a group of horses or herds of cows, a few monkeys and their head features are so similar, it is hard to distinguish one monkey from another, one cow from another. Would one monkey be able to recognize his cousin from a dozen of others perched in a nearby tree?

Humans are unique. Our DNA is unique. Our designer has made us this way. A photo of a face is used to identify a criminal walking the streets. Our finger prints are used as an identifying tool. The one and only designer must have wanted to be able to recognize each and everyone of us as an individual, as a unique person so very different from all the rest.  The designer, the grand architect wanted to recognize each one of us distinguished from the millions. Surely the maker could have formed us a bit more like monkeys with the addition of free will,  intelligence and enough curiosity to invent technology.

Yep, The Almighty creator made us this way so, that when I call upon Him, He can say: “yes Arnold, glad to hear your voice today? How can I help?”

I then entered the auditorium of this church where the morning worship service was about to start.  Ah, what a different atmosphere this was compared to the churches I’m accustomed to in my old age. Lights streaming across the stage, a large TV type screen on each adjacent wall, the lights flashed a large picture of the pastor standing on the center stage. It did not have a pulpit raised up as many of the older cathedral churches have, most having two, one for the pastor to use as he delivered his morning sermon, and one for announcements. In the rear of this thousand plus seat auditorium, there was the sound booth with 3 guys adjusting the controls of the computer driven sound system changing the booming effects to large speakers, adjusting the lighting effects streaking down from the ceiling.

From the street, I would not have recognized the building as a church except for the steeple atop the pointed roof and the name emblazed on the marquee on the street.  It appeared more like an auditorium. In America there is the divide between Catholicism and the numerous protestant denominations and sects, but the basics are the same adhering to the one God, the creator of all things sacrificing part of Himself to remove our transgressions so that we could enjoy that blessed reunion in that heavenly realm along with those we never recognized here on earth.

Through the air it goes.

While scanning the latest news, uprisings, shenanigans just now, the mind went back 30 some years ago to my first computer: a Compaq. Wow, how that inspired me back then to see a sentence I typed appear on the screen and to also be able to play Pack-Man.  Fast forward to now, and I don’t get excited at seeing a sentence, a picture, a video or playing solitaire; it’s just business as usual, and why is that blue circle going round and round. Do I need an update?

Growing up as a kid in the 40’s and 50’s we had one telephone, a wire connecting it to the wall and then outside to the telephone post through the back yards of the neighborhoods. You could talk through that one wire to someone in another town far away.

In 1960, I learned the Morse-Code, a simple system of combining dots and dashes into words leaving a tiny bit longer pause between each word, sending the di-dah combinations electronically over the airwaves to the ears of another.  Hmm?  Now, technocrats have learned how to combine 1’s and 0’s into a series of 8 units, a break and then more 1’s and 0’s being combined as the binary code for electronic computing. These typed notes are being converted into those digits sending the signals over the air, then converted back into words on the screens of millions of hand-held smart phones.

The strings of a piano each of differing lengths producing different sounds lower to higher pitch going through the air making music to my ears. Put seven pianos together in the same room, each doing their own thing; wouldn’t that become just noise bouncing echoes off the walls?

I hear your voice. It went from your lips thru the air reaching my ears and into my brain muscle interpreting what you said. Sound vibrations. I’ve been in restaurants where the sounds of everyone chatting bounce off the ceiling and walls adding to the festive atmosphere. Now that I’m partially deaf, those sound vibrations, the echoes all mingling together getting messed up because the ear is not working correctly: those tiny hair fibers are either missing or are not vibrating as they ought, or something like that I’ve been told. That blue circle going round and round.

Yes, my ears need an update. I’ve had 3 of those man made electronic updates and neither has been able to reproduce the original ability of hearing and discerning sounds coming through the air.

Consider that there could be millions around the world doing the same as I’m doing pressing the ‘send’ button at the same time, and yet those signals do not collide into confusion; no echoes as it goes through the air. All that talking through a wire not bumping into other speech patterns. Through the air and wires without confusion, without bumping into each other without echoes.  How is that possible? Better ask a scientist about that.

Shout out at the walls of a great canyon and you’ll hear an echo.

How is all this possible? Frequency multiplexing is what it’s been named. Waves through the air. What happens to those vibrations when winds whip up a flurry, tornadoes swirling the air, rain drops and snow-flakes dropping?  Does that not interfere with those frequency waves?

How marvelous this is. All part of that first ray of light penetrating the darkness at 186,000 miles per second.

The-heavens-declare-the-glory-of-God

“The heavens declare the glory of God; the skies proclaim the work of his hands.

Day after day they pour forth speech; night after night they display knowledge” (Psalm 19:1–2)

In need of Help

I needed help today. Help from fellow members of this human race did not, could not, would not, whatever. I was pondering the problem of technology beyond my understanding. A password was needed. I knew the one I have been using, but it was rejected. I tried another one close to the primary one, it was rejected. I tried an older one, it was rejected. I got on-line to the site after logging in and then requesting help on the “chat” line. Information given. To cut this short, after almost an hour of back and forth chats, printing out the ‘help pages’ to follow, I got nowhere except; “click” end of chat. Is it because, well yes, it’s because I am a user of technology which can get burned out just as I’m about to be burned-up because of this. Why couldn’t the programmers know something like this could happen? Or, their job is more secure when things like this happen: more chat times.

Am I pushing the wrong button? All I see is the result of the configurations of the 1 and 0’s. All I see is my fingers pushing keys on the keyboard resting on my knees which sends signals to the screen which shows in black on white the combination of keys punched combined into English words: “I need help”, then waiting for the answer.

Isn’t that the same position we the people are in?

We say and believe that God created this universe and all that is in it, and we didn’t have any input into its design, as there would have been a few things I’d have changed making it easier for us tech dummies to understand. I use basically the same sign-in code and password for all my tech—stuff. Have I been hacked? Is that devilish one unnerving me? That good book we look to for guidance and answers says He (God) is ready and willing to help when in need, just ask. And, often when we ask for help, nothing seems to arrive relieving our frustration. “End of chat. Click”.

Try someone else for advice. No, I got to figure this out on my own. Get into that closet on my knees and try again. What am I doing wrong? I used the password (the name of Jesus) and the closet is still just as dark as when I entered; no light exposing my asked for help. Try again. But where does my voice go? Where? Seems like it bounced off the ceiling. Maybe go outside and ask again. Shout into the air: “I need help.”  Swat the air; nothing there.

Advice I get is: “Patience brother. Did you miss-spell the password? No, tried it three times. Is there some area of your life you need to correct first?”  Well, yes, undoubtedly, I’m full of it, but I don’t recall anything specific at this moment. Hey, I try to treat all my fellow humans with the same kind of love. It’s me. Sometimes I must work at it, but it’s the way it is, I didn’t have anything to do with the creation of any of this. This technology thingy is the way it is. Hard to understand when something goes amiss. I want help now, yes NOW.

Hmm? Too many like me crying for help at this time and my number has not come up yet, so be patient. Sure, how can God answer all the requests for help at the same time. Could be the guy next door be wanting to chat also, and one down the block, in the next neighborhood, the next town, the pastor of the church, the rural farmer stuck in the mud, traffic jams in the big city, tornado in the next state, the governor, a rep about to lose the election, yeah and even homes across the seas. Millions of us wanting for a “chat time” at the same time. Wait your turn buddy, I’m number 156741. Others waiting their turn on the “chat line”. Be patient.  Yes, Okay, no doubt some of those cries for help are more serious than mine, even life or death, a child fell thru the ice, a witness life threatened, a woman buried under a crashed vehicle, a youngster about to jump. Yes, thousands more pertinent than mine. Let them be ministered to first. Now I’m # 846123.

I’ll go shopping a bit while waiting my turn.

While pushing the cart down an aisle a thought came: “go over to the technology section and select a new one.” Okay, what have I got to lose, just the $35, that’s all. I’m here. Why not?

I did. Spent the $35, took it home, unwrapped it, read the instructions, installed it, typed in the same code again and whoosh, problem solved. Throw the old one in the trash, no longer working as it developed a flaw. Answer received, but hold on, I was way down the list. Didn’t think I’d get an answer at all. It really was kind of quick and unexpected. Did a bunch ahead of me cancel out?

My summary.

Technology? Who can understand the interworking’s of technology? Only the programmers, not the users. Who can understand the interworking’s of spirit and physical? Only the creator, not the creation. The Almighty God is outside our time zone as that spiritual unseen world is without time. We as physical elements are restricted to time; the physical law of gravity keeps us in this physical time zone. For us time keeps moving. For the Creator there is only now: here there everywhere all the time, every millisecond of our time.

The creator, the programmer whispered thoughts to this mind of mine as I pushed the cart.

Like technology, I develop flaws and don’t quite work as well, so one day I’ll be down and out of this time zone being replaced by another.

Too busy to be still.

We’ve all got a navigational system built within guiding us and leading us to and down a peaceful loving fulfilling confident path, but along the way we may see another path that looks and appears to be the one as the footprints are too many to count. It sure looks neat and easy, so why not. Yes, do it. After some time following the deep footprints, getting involved in the brush, shooing away wild dogs, we settle on a neat comfortable grassy plain by the rippled waters watching others doing the same. Yes, this is it. This is the way. I’m happy as a lark.

Then that guidance system knocks on the door. Take another look.

I once was too busy reveling in the pursuit of the comfortable grassy plain while periodically fighting off the dogs, I was following the footprints, negating my own built in guidance system into unconsciousness. Too busy to be still. Too occupied to know. Too comfortable enjoying the entertaining fellowship.

Then one day I noticed a trail of ants, a hummingbird, a butterfly, an eagle doing what they do.

How do they do it?  What path are they following? Can an ant fly? Does a hummingbird get mad? Does the butterfly smile when full? Does an Eagle laugh at the conquest? Do they talk, leaving footprints?

I was watching. I was intrigued by the wonders. I was still. I began to know. I was being renewed. Oh, that peace that is beyond understanding.

  • And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind,so that you may prove what the will of God is, that which is good and acceptable and perfect.” Romans 12:2
  • He restores my soul; He leads me in the paths of righteousness for His name’s sake. Psalm 23:3
  • Come, behold the works of the LORD, what desolations he hath made in the earth. He maketh wars to cease unto the end of the earth; he breaketh the bow, and cutteth the spear in sunder; he burneth the chariot in the fire.
  • Be still, and know that I am God: I will be exalted among the heathen, I will be exalted in the earth.
  • The LORD of hosts is with us; the God of Jacob is our refuge. Psalm 46: 8-11

Computers and Creation

“You’re looking at the computer screen before you turn it on; it’s black, it’s nothing, just a blank screen. Was that how it was before the Almighty created light? You press the on button and that energy makes the screen come alive with the background you chose. You see the pictures or diagrams of your favorite places to go, waiting for you to point to it pressing the button on the mouse. Who created those icons? How did they get there? What makes it tick? If it’s overloaded or the devise is old, you may see a tiny blue circle going round and round.

“This entire physical universe is made up of millions and perhaps billions of trillions of configurations of those tiny atoms and molecules. That computer is made up of different configurations of the basics of 1 and 0, millions or billions of those two basics in different bunches create the pictures, the software, the games within that cell phone and computer. Someone, or the entire office full of programmers figured out how to do it. That computer did not fall into place over millions of years by random happenings of 1 and 0, the electrical current of a positive and negative, a yes or a no, it’s on or it’s off. Nope, a designer made it appear alive and do what it does when you press buttons, and there are certain rules you must follow and be mindful of to use it correctly.

“The same with this universe: a master designer had to do it and we must take to heart and apply those rules for us to live correctly as the designer programmed, or we just go round and round in circles.

“We want to solve our mysteries, but some will never be scientifically solved and we don’t like that.

Okay, the major question to these secular humanistic atheists is: how and where did that first physical molecule or atom come from? What caused those to expand into more, expanding into more? They say it was a big bang. Now a bang must have a force making something go bang. “Was there a time when it all began? There it is, the one element that’s missing in our deliberations: the concept of time. Time always moves. The clocks ticks. The sun and moon rise and disappear. The calendar changes. But, the almighty is beyond time, before time; therefore no beginnings, no endings, only now. Its something we can’t comprehend as we’ve been immersed in this time element with a beginning and an ending. Time was a brand new element from the first ray of light, just as this physical realm was a brand new element inside the spiritual.”

 

Copied from “Considering the Ant”. The novel by Arnold