Monday, September 29, 2008
Sunday, September 28, 2008
Compassion is sending violet roses to an admirer of violet roses (esp. when the sender believes crimson roses are ideal).
Compassion is taking the weary hare in one's arms and carrying him to the finish line (esp. when one believes slow-and-steady should win the race).
Compassion is sharing the joy a homosexual couple holds (esp. when one believes heterosexual couples are ideal and necessary to 'win the race').
Compassion is true empathy. Compassion is an extension of love. Compassion is forsaking the entire self and taking in its place the neighbor doubly.
Compassion is feeling hunger when hunger is felt, not in oneself, but in one's neighbor. Compassion is then filling the hungry neighbor's belly when only a few scraps would suffice.
Compassion is feeling weariness when weariness is felt, not in oneself, but in one's neighbor. Compassion is then taking hold of the weary neighbor and supporting him for the journey when only a mile would suffice.
Compassion is feeling joy when joy is felt, not in oneself, but in one's neighbor. Compassion is then rejoicing for a lifetime with the joyful neighbor when only an afternoon would suffice.
Compassion is neither offensive nor defensive. Compassion is adjoining.
Compassion is becoming one.
Saturday, September 27, 2008
I have learned:
Love is seeing a violet rose and seeing a violet rose -- and not seeing not a crimson rose. Love is seeing the beauty in a violet rose -- and not seeing not the beauty of a crimson rose. Love is seeing the value in a violet rose as well as seeing the value in a crimson rose (esp. when one believes crimson roses are the ideal roses).
Love is seeing a hare and seeing a hare -- and not seeing not a tortoise. Love is seeing the hare's speed -- and not seeing not the tortoise's slow-and-steadiness. Love is seeing the value in the hare's speed as well as the value in the tortoise's slow-and-steadiness (esp. when one believes slow-and-steady is superior to speed).
Love is seeing a homosexual couple and seeing a homosexual couple -- and not seeing not a heterosexual couple. Love is seeing the contributions of a homosexual couple -- and not seeing not the contributions of a heterosexual couple. Love is seeing the value of a homosexual couple as well as the value of a heterosexual couple (esp. when one believes heterosexual couples are ideal/superior to homosexual couples).
Love is embracing the goodness in someone or something -- and not not embracing the perceived, feared, or even actual badness in someone or something. Love is trusting the goodness in someone or something -- and not fearing the perceived, feared, or even actual badness in someone or something. [This is what I believe is meant by "love the sinner, not the sin."]
Love is seeing someone or something as it is -- not as it is perceived or "should be" ... but as it is.
Friday, September 26, 2008
My little brother, Spencer (number 11, the lasht [sic] one -- 10 points if you can guess the reference), is the one helping my pa with the 120 lb pumpkin.
My nephew, Seth (scrud, I don't know where he lies in the Pankratz Niece/Nephew Cardinality... but he's the first son and second child of my brother, Peter -- number 7) is the kid running through the field at the beginning.
I would assume it obvious who my mummsie and pa are.
In other news, I guess it's customary to throw confetti and make annoying sounds to signify my 100th post... so... [confetti] ... [annoying sounds] ...
... do people ever get confetti 'shrapnel' ? I've had many-a-hay sliver... not pleasant... festers almost instantly.
Jumping off of a stack of three one-ton bales of hay onto concrete is not pleasant on the legs.
Using several acres of alfalfa as an imaginary world... priceless.
Thinking about slipping away permanently into your imaginary world... worrying... freeing ... ?
[Insert nervous face here]
Actually, I'm *really* excited. Even though Tap is my worst dance, I feel confident in my teaching skills, and even if I can't do a step perfectly, I sure as Flanagan [?] can teach it.
I also danced with my new ballroom partner today. I'm *really* excited about this as well -- I think it's going to be a good match. We are starting with the Rumba. She hadn't really danced the Rumba before, but she's picking up on it quickly. Again, I'm excited.
I actually probably shouldn't have danced today, though, what with my sinus infection and the stomach churning effects of the antibiotics I'm taking... but I don't regret it (even though I feel incredibly ill right now).
In other, dance related news:
I know I was thinking this last year and chickened out... but, I'm going to start working toward getting the cojones, chutzpah, etc. to audition for the next season of So You Think You Can Dance. Unlike last year, though, I now have the opportunities to really practice both Ballroom and Tap -- I figure I should get Tap down really well so I can tap during the 30 second "Dance For Your Life" pre-elimination dances (since Ballroom isn't very fabulous solo).
To be honest, I'm not necessarily looking to win but to at least make it into the top 10 so I can tour.
To be honest, I'm worried I'm going to chicken out again.
So, here's what I hope to do: starting in a few months I'm going to start posting videos of my dancing so y'all -- all two of my readers -- can encourage me (or discourage if I'm not good... seriously, I want honesty).
It's not set in stone (and it depends on my partner's okay), but expect the first video to be a Rumba I will have choreographed to "One Night Only" (Highlights Version) from the movie, Dream Girls.
Thursday, September 25, 2008
Wednesday, September 24, 2008
Tuesday, September 23, 2008
During the discussion, my mom said, "You know, I'm getting a strong feeling about the name [Stanislav] (not the real name)."
My eyes widened -- though I hopefully hid it.
[Stanislav] is the name of the guy I was totally crushing on at the time... okay, okay... still am.
Coincidences such as this have happened so many times with this guy that if we were to end up together (God granting), I could easily spin it as, indeed, a match made by God, Himself -- or perhaps God, Herself (God, Himself's wife).
Yes, I do believe our Heavenly Father is straight and eternally sealed to a woman. To be honest, I've always sort of felt a connection with Her -- which makes sense, I mean the gay sons are supposed to be buddy-buddy with their mom's, right?
In fact, I remember one day in Primary we were talking about... well, I forget exactly what we were talking about, but I made the comment, "... and Heavenly Mother!"
I was laughed at -- oh, the irony: I was laughed at then because of my belief in a Heavenly Mother; I am laughed at now because of their belief that a Heavenly Mother is required.
Anyway, moral of the story: my doctor's appointment is on Thursday... THURSDAY... and I don't know if I'm going to make it (meaning alive).
If I do end up giving up my ghost, there is one very important thing I want everyone to know:
Please... no dogs at my funeral (or near my grave at any time). We are sworn enemies, dogs and I, and I will carry my hatred to the grave.
Monday, September 22, 2008
I should have been working on the websites I'm coding, but my sinus pain has been rather dehabilitating ... my laziness isn't the point of this post, though.
In one episode, the challenge was an interview -- where the models were instructed to try to spin difficult questions into a positive tone. This got me thinking: if I one day become well-known in some way and was asked, say by The Advocate, something like, "Is your family supportive of your being gay?" then how would I respond?
(Yeah, I know, I have rather fanciful... and somewhat specifically detailed... fantasies.)
How would I try to sound positive when my family is, perhaps for lack of a better phrase, ashamed of who I am becoming in respect to my homosexuality? How could I sound positive on a subject that is the current greatest source of my anxiety, fear, and grief?
Then I thought, "Well, why did I choose 'coming out' over making my family proud?" Therein I found my answer.
When I came-out, I made a decision to trust the inclinations of my heart -- not just the inclination to love men, but the inclination that falling in love with a man (and acting upon that love) is not abhorrent to God.
Basically, I decided to trust love (how corny, I know), and that's what I need to do with my family. I need to trust in the love they have for me. I need to trust that such their love will see the truth and soften their hearts toward me and my choices.
And I think I'm beginning to trust.
(Speaking of The Advocate, they just interviewed my very first celebrity crush -- I've never really had one up until just a couple weeks ago. I mean, sure, there have been celebrities that I've thought, "Gee, he's good-lookin'" ~cough~James Roday~cough~ but none that I've ever truly thought, "Gee, I would like to date him" ... until now.)
Saturday, September 20, 2008
THE DANCE YOU HAVE BEEN WAITING FOR IS FINALLY HERE! IT'S FOR AGES 18+1. I cannot wait until April's LDS Conference Dance XXX
CONFERENCE DANCE NUMBER XXIX. EVERY SIX MONTHS WE HOST THIS DANCE JUST BEFORE LDS CONFERENCE. THIS IS A CHANCE FOR LDS SINGLES AND FRIENDS TO MINGLE AT ONE OF THE BIGGEST LDS SINGLES EVENTS OF THE YEAR!
SO BIG WE HAD TO MOVE IT TO THE SOUTH TOWNE EXPO CENTER FROM STUDIO 600. THIS IS OUR 29TH CONSECUTIVE CONFERENCE DANCE WITH OVER 100,000 ATTENDEES IN IT'S HISTORY
THE SOUTH TOWN EXPO CENTER IS LOCATED AT 9450 S STATE STREET IN SANDY.
TOP 40 HIP HOP
TEXT “STUDIO” TO 83361 FOR $5 OFF
SPONSORED BY STUDIO 600
LDS STANDARDS APPLY
THERE WILL BE A MID SINGLES DANCE HELD AT STUDIO 600
FOR AGES 30-45 9PM-2AM 600S AND 26E
*Note* This event is not sponsored or endorsed by the LDS church. However it is designed for LDS singles and their friends,
2. "Hip Hop" ... "Latin" ... "LDS standards" ...
3. Okay, so I only had two chortles here ... my mind's on the episode of What Not to Wear that I have recorded but still need to watch.
Friday, September 19, 2008
I know it's not allergies -- I was tested for allergies about a year ago and I am allergic to nothing.
I have tried decongestants, and they do not help me what-so-ever.
I don't know what's wrong, but it's almost to the unbearable stage.
Thursday, September 18, 2008
Nor is it a bad thing, this impending radioactivity. We will no longer need to worry about toilet paper or soft shoe.
And ice cream will never taste better.
Tuesday, September 16, 2008
If I can finish the framework for the websites I'm working on right now (wow, it's tough trying to work a million jobs at once!), I'm thinking I'll be able to start up a very, very small website development business under my own name.
(Notice how many side-projects I keep juggling around? It keeps me entertained, even if they never go anywhere. I'm sure one will take off -- even if just somewhat -- one of these days, though. After all, many business experts say that such 'disruptive products' are vital to the success of a business... on verra...)
Monday, September 15, 2008
Sunday, September 14, 2008
I'm such a hopeless romantic... hopeless in the most maximum of ways. In fact, if you were to ask me why I am, as the saying goes, "saving myself for marriage [in the states/countries where it is legal]" I wouldn't respond with any sort of religious answer but instead with, "It's just so... romantic..."
And, of course, how could one be a hopeless romantic without unrequited love. Oh unrequited love, on one hand it makes me smile (because it's so romantic) and on the other hand it tares [sic] at my heart and squashes the bleeding pieces into a pulp of anxiety and restlessness.
The title of the article is "Wonder What the War in Heaven Was Like? Watch California This Fall," was written by Gary Lawrence, and can be found here, at Meridian Magazine.
In this article, Gary -- with his "35 years of studying arguments in political campaigns, and a bit of reverse engineering" -- presents what he believes were Satan's tactics in the 'War in Heaven":
"Argument 1: Equality. Lucifer sets the foundation by appealing to fairness and the equal worth of every spirit child."
"Argument 2: Sympathy. Having set the logic, Lucifer turns to emotion."
"Argument 3: Hate. After playing on the victim angle, Lucifer gradually steers emotions to the negative. Knowing that rebellion against righteousness can never be sustained without hate, he sows doubt about the Father Himself and leads the gullible step by step to that absolutely necessary ingredient if he is to win."
"Argument 4: Change. Now Lucifer returns to logic."
"Argument 5: Guarantee. Amid the arguments about the consequences of each choice, Lucifer administers his clincher [a false guarantee]."
Although such isn't the main thesis of my post, I think it's important to realize that these tactics can be projected upon the Mormons' efforts in regards to same-sex marriage (or even same-sex attraction in general) just as equally as Gary is projecting the arguments upon proponents of same-sex marriage.
Equality: The LDS Church's main stance concerning same-sex attraction is that a all males' potential eternal destiny/heritage are strictly equal and all females' potential eternal destiny/heritage are strictly equal.It's very simple to twist someone's beliefs/efforts into 'tactics' and use this tortion [sic] as propaganda. Misrepresentation is a very powerful tool -- because it can create a fearful barrier which greatly handicaps an individual's willingness to listen to the other side. And it's actually this misrepresentation, not the tactics themselves, that I believe begins to "parallel the LDS belief of Satan's efforts in the pre-existence."
Sympathy: Sticking with 'sympathy' alone, one need merely read the more recent comments of the LDS General Authorities to see how often the "sympathy" card is played.
However, the way Gary uses this argument, a better name for such would be "Pathos" -- playing on emotion. I just need one link here (although there are many).
Hate: "After playing on the victim angle ... "
"The opposition must be shamed, vilified, and demonized. These descriptors of defenders of traditional marriage can already be found in anti-Prop 8 literature and blogs, and the list will grow:
Christian extremists, anti-gay, right-wing radicals, old-fashioned, hung-up, homophobes, bigots, stupid, intolerant, mean-spirited, knuckle-draggers."
"... Lucifer gradually steers emotions to the negative."" If same-sex marriage advocates can dilute and hollow out the central part of the Creator's plan, the whole structure collapses — the family, the nation, and in time civilization itself."Change: See the nearest quote of his article as to how Mormons approach change -- and we also see a tactic I believe Satan would have used very often that Gary fails to mention: fear.
Guarantee: What does the LDS Church have to offer a homosexual but a guarantee that simply cannot be proven valid until after death?
At core of the misrepresentation is the following statement made by Gary in his article:
"Now turn to the present battle. Whereas the principle under fire in the war in heaven was agency — the right to choose — the target in 2008 in California is marriage, both a principle and an institution"This is false. "The principle under fire" then and now are the same: "the right to choose."
It's understandable, however, that Gary misrepresents what is truly under attack here:
- Proponents of same-sex marriage are saying an individual has the right to choose whom he/she marries.
- According to LDS doctrine, it was Christ's plan and desire that the children of God have the right to choose which-so-ever life they desired (He would give guidelines as to how best live life, but those guidelines would not be forced upon anyone).
- Opponents of same-sex marriage are saying that there is only one kind of marriage [that is approved by God] and that this marriage must be enforced upon all mankind, despite personal beliefs, choices, etc.
- According to LDS doctrine, it was Lucifer's plan that the guidelines for perfect life must be enforced upon all mankind, despite personal beliefs, choices, etc.
They just make me feel... I don't know, anxious? Frustrated? Sad? Angry? Scared? I don't know.
... I do know I have something in my eye right now... ouch...
What I find most troubling are attitudes like this. The attitude, itself, isn't what grabs at me -- I mean, if someone truly believes that homosexuals parallel Satan, fine. To be frank, I think the words of this article parallel the LDS belief of Satan's efforts in the pre-existence (my next post's topic).
But what is... irksome, maybe... to me can be found in the "About the Author" section:
Gary Lawrence is a California pollster and the author of a forthcoming book How Americans View Mormonism; Seven Steps to Improve Our Image.I am specifically referring to the title of Gary's book. Here we have a fellow who has written a book about, I'm assuming, the misrepresentation of Mormonism in America ... and what is he doing but misrepresenting the beliefs of homosexuals in America.
... and he expects to help improve the American image of the LDS faith? Really?
Saturday, September 13, 2008
Then I looked at the label. Sugar-Free. I GRABBED THE FREAGGIN' SUGAR-FREE BOTTLES!
They should really put a different color of label on the sugar-free bottles. Seriously.
No wonder why I haven't been sleeping the greatest.
... I'd also like to get proficient at Tap... and I must absolutely learn Flamenco...
But where will I find the time for all this?
sigh... maybe I'll dream in Ballroom.
Friday, September 12, 2008
I'm trying to overcome this, to learn to be 'settled,' to try to not get bored with being in one place.
It's tough, but now that I'm learning that it's okay to worry about me, I think I can handle it.
You know what's really interesting: I've found that worrying about me has been enabling me to worry about others much more efficiently... if that makes sense.
In other news, and completely off subject (hehe, I'm a Cucumber just started to play... I love that song), I've recently had a few friends comment -- usually with rolling eyes -- at how 'Mormon' I still am; how I don't drink, how I don't go out clubbing... basically how I'm not experiencing the life restricted by Mormonism.
The thing is, though, that -- save for the not loving whom I love part -- the life I was living wasn't me following a prescription, it was how I wanted to live my life and how I still want to live my life (again, save for the whole not loving whom I love part).
Even if I were to abandon my belief in God or in an afterlife or in anything as such, I would still be who I am, living how I am... even if that means I don't fit in anywhere.
I don't know how common it is to truly not care about fitting in, but I really don't. I mean, you get people who are all, "I don't care about fitting in," but then they're almost always grouped with a bunch of others who "don't care about fitting in."
I've always chortled at such. The people, like I, who truly don't care about fitting in are... well... alone -- because we don't really fit in anywhere.
And, yet, as I think about it, it's more that I don't permanently fit in anywhere. That is to say, at any time, I could be found in almost any clique, genuinely getting along with everyone -- I just wouldn't make it into the group's 'little black book' (however, that's not to say I wouldn't be sincerely welcome again).
At least, people seem to genuinely enjoy my company most times -- they could just be putting on airs until the little spaz leaves... which is quite possible.
Anyway, I'm really just rambling... because I'm feeling a little antsy.
(Oooh, did you see how I tied everything together right there?)
Thursday, September 11, 2008
Wednesday, September 10, 2008
I think I might want to be a professor.
Tuesday, September 9, 2008
Hopefully I'll sleep wonderfully tonight and be all refreshed and vibrant tomorrow.
In other news, apparently you can't park on the streets in SLC with expired license plates.
In other news, apparently my license plates are expired.
Monday, September 8, 2008
I will be making a demo version of a software program utilizing said method.
I will hopefully be able to present this demo to the presidents of the company for which I work.
The presidents will hopefully be as excited as I am about the possibilities, benefits, and implications of my method.
Then hopefully one of my ideas for software will finally be more than 'just an idea' !
That's the plan, anyway...
Friday, September 5, 2008
You see, what they were saying was almost exactly, word-for-word (literally) what I felt I was getting from the Spirit. The difference, however, came from the translations thereof.
It's actually quite amazing how translations of the virtually same message can be so different -- quite amazing.
(off topic: I just saw a commercial for high fructose corn syrup... ha... oh yeah, I can fast forward...)
I noticed that there are a lot of different biases that affect a translation.
My parents hold a framework of what can and cannot be possible. My translation simply is not possible within this framework. (Please note, I'm not saying they are necessarily wrong.)
My translation was formed according to the scriptures -- and the thoughts concerning these scriptures -- I was reading when the believed revelations came. (Please note, I believe that revelation comes through a connection to the Spirit and not through that which connected one to the Spirit... if that makes sense.)
(off topic: Does anyone know a good tailor in the SLC area? Maybe I should learn.)
Of course, one only need look at the different religions rooted in the words of the Bible to see how drastic translations of the same message can differ -- and then look at history to see what sorts of things affected these translations.
... so, I guess my question is: How do we know what translation (if any) is the true translation?
Applying this question to my situation: On one hand, I have those whom I believe are men of God saying one thing with my parents backing them up... then on the other hand, I have a very different personal feeling telling me another thing.
At first, this dilemma was very troubling to me... it caused a lot of conflict and confusion... but then I took a deep breath and trusted those whom I believe are men of God.
"WHAT!?" you say?
Well, there's something else that these men teach: an individual has the most authority when it comes to personal revelation.
Of course, I say this so casually and lightheartedly... but it's quite a heavy decision to make, and it takes a terrible amount of self-trust... extremely difficult to come by... and easily exhausted.
It took place in an African desert and was focused on an older, female meerkat who had yet to find a mate. (I don't even know if meerkats mate for life... but anyway...)
There was some sort of ceremony or something where a bunch of meerkats were gathered together. During such this ceremony, the older, female meerkat met eyes with an older, male meerkat.
She batted her eyes and, blushingly, looked away. He smiled and stepped a little closer. There was that romantic, gooshy atmosphere for a few minutes until, finally, they started to run towards each other.
Then ~WHACK~ the female is hit by the front wheel of a landing plane -- a plane carrying a group of Christians (I was one of them). We noticed the injured meerkat (which was thrown several yards) right away. We were very concerned and began immediately to find the medical supplies to heal the meerkat -- I think one of the Christians was a doctor.
Somehow, we ended up at an abandoned drive-in movie theatre where I was able to find (in the men's bathroom) a first-aid kit that had the sufficient tools to help the meerkat.
Soon, we were back to the plane, performing surgery on the injured animal...
... but I woke up before I found out if she ended up okay or not.
Thursday, September 4, 2008
Then 'Good Morning Baltimore' from Hairspray came on, and I perked right up...
I'm so gay.