RSS

Category Archives: midrash

Oh to undo what’s been done in “1000 Years”

I’m posting an email (once upon a time people actually communicated this way) from a friend who was answering a question I asked about the lyrics of one of his songs which was compelling and provocative (in a good way). This friend was the lead singer of my favorite band, Shaking Tree. The shows his band put on were second to none and he is a lyrical genius. Unfortunately his band is no longer touring because as he put it, “They had to grow up and get real jobs.” so he is now in law school…whether or not becoming a lawyer is a real job or not is beside the point. 😉 This email is from a few years back, but still very relevant to this day about how the wider world views religion and Christians. Note: the way most view Jesus is normally very different than how most view Christians. I disagree with some parts and agree with most parts of the email but I’m not posting this to refute, or condone, but to allow the readers of my blog to consider the truths which Dain speaks of and to see how you can see God in Dain. I hope he’s strumming on his guitar and we’re throwing back beers together just like in college whenever we both get to the big Kansas in the sky. {I have corrected spelling so as not to be distracting from the message}

“Hey Derek,

About “1000 Years”…I really don’t like to get into my own views about Christianity and the church too much. In matters concerning faith I find that sometimes the things that one person finds ridiculous, is the core to someone elses spiritual perspective. As someone whose views, in spiritual matters, are not common place in main stream society, I recognize that we all walk down different paths externally and internally to find answers regarding our souls and our purpose. Because of that, I’m not interested in trying to completely uproot anyone’s internal beliefs. As a songwriter I’m just as concerned about what people think when they hear a song than what I am actually writing about. The meaning of most songs should change according to who is listening and what personal experiences the song reminds them of.

All that being said, my views about “1000 Years” have stayed consistent since I first wrote the song. I never intended for this song to be speaking about just religious leaders, but anyone who uses a doctrine that is intended to have absolute truths (the Bible, the Koran, Mein Kampf) with no room to compromise or adjust any principle, for political gain and control of a population.

I guess I wasn’t trying to strike a loud chord with this song, down with religion or anything like that, but just to make people think. Not about religion per se but about religion and politics. As someone who has read the Bible I would be extremely frightened if we, as a country, decided to prepare for the prophecies of Revelations. Also, what I see now is a political movement to christianize our schools, government, and the way law is decided and practiced. I have seen a few church leaders speak out against this fundamentalist movement, but I don’t see it as being effective. The fundamentalist/conservatives yell much louder. Like the song says (truth lacks the convictions of passionate lies) and the Bible is full of contradictions. The ability for debate is slowly eroding in this country because the argument that, “Jesus said…” can and has overridden many peoples sense of humanity and reason, especially in the great state of Kansas and to an extent in our policy in the middle east. This is not to say that religious concerns cannot be valid in a democracy, but with the spread of sexually transmitted diseases, the complexity of terrorism, individual rights and religions age-old bigotry towards science (and in many cases life saving science) I don’t see how theses issues can be solved by a more moderate form of christianity without disregarding part of the message that the bible promotes in the same way the conservative/fundamentalist do. I hope that the moderates are able to combat this path that we seem to be heading in.

Anyway, in a nutshell this is what goes on in my head. I hope I didn’t say anything offensive because I’m never really sure where people are coming from and outside of the political arena I’m extremely supportive of others’ beliefs even if they don’t even closely connect with my own. The cool things about music is that once the song is out of the writer’s hands, its meaning becomes the listeners regardless of the writer’s intention. I’m always a little reluctant to talk about songs because of this. The last thing I want to do is ruin a song for someone. Anyway–I’ll see you on Thursday –take care.   — Dain

This is me again.  Below are the lyrics of “1000 Years” to see what Dain is talking about in the description of his views on religion; if you want to hear the song, just let me know – it’s phenomenal.

Shepherds in Bethlehem wait for him to be born, what will man do in his name? They will call him a god, they will look for the marks, every free soul there will pay.

Whispers of innocence drowned out in tears, everyone must choose a side, truth lacks conviction of passionate lies, the sin is too fragile, to hurt us inside!

1000 die by some man’s foolish pride, 1000 lost to God and all his lies, 1000 loaves soon replaced by fear, it hasn’t changed in 1000 years. 1000 screams lost within the air, 1000 lives buried in the sand, 1000 mommas soon replaced by tears, it has changed within 1000 years.

Politicians and preachers corrupt from inside, ask us to lay down like lambs. They will say they’re for love they will talk of compassion, question ’em and they skate along.

Whispers of innocence drowned out in tears, everyone must choose a side, truth lacks conviction of passionate lies, the sin is too fragile, to hurt us inside!”

1000 die by some man’s foolish pride, 1000 lost to God and all his lies, 1000 loaves soon replaced by fear, hasn’t changed in 1000 years. 1000 screams lost within the air, 1000 lives buried in the sand, 1000 mommas soon replaced by tears, it has changed within 1000 years.

Whispers of innocence drowned out in tears, everyone must choose a side, truth lacks conviction of passionate lies, the sin is too fragile, to hurt us inside!”

1000 die by some man’s foolish pride, 1000 lost to God and all his lies, 1000 loaves soon replaced by fear, hasn’t changed in 1000 years. 1000 screams lost within the air, 1000 lives buried in the sand, 1000 mommas soon replaced by tears, it has changed within 1000 years.

Later this week I’ll be upgrading my space to include the songs, but until then you can check out: Dain and Dain on myspace You can buy some of his music on iTunes, unfortunately you can’t buy my two favorite songs of his, “Complications” (that I actually was able to record with him!) and “1000 Years”. But again, I have both of these if you want to hear them.

Advertisements
 
 

Tags: , , , , , , ,

“Goodbye Ward & June”; American Family Values

Midrash_GoodbyeWardJune[1]

Not everybody is political, artistic, an intellectual, or in to pop culture, but everybody has, or has had, a family. Come on out and discuss if the family is a good thing or if the family is still a relevant entity in today’s wired world.

“Goodbye Ward & June”; American Family Values. What does the American family look like today? Is there a norm for what families look like? Should there be a norm? Single-parent family, homosexual-parent families, broken families. Are families important…are they even relevant today?

Discussion free and open to absolutely everybody. Come on out, grab a brew, give your view, and lend an ear to others’.

Who: you and friends
What: Theology on the Rock
When: Wednesday (2/17), 7-9pm
Where: the oyster bar (3003 markham)
Why: because talking about these issues are fun and important

Midrash…commentary on culture since 2008

 
1 Comment

Posted by on February 14, 2010 in midrash

 

Tags: , , ,

Theology on the Rock, Jan 20, 7pm

*spoiler alert, there are many, many hyperlinks contained within this email – your mouse and browser will get a workout.

So here it comes…the second coming of Theology on the Rock!  Since Midrash made its long-awaited return last Fall we’ve had: a coffee-shop discussion, and a film night.  Sensing the ground swell of interest about to peak we bring back Theology on the Rock.  I’ll simply point you to some blogs that you can read if you want to be brought up to speed about our new connection with Eikon church.

Midrash-The Second Coming

Announcing Midrash-Eikon Blog

So…now that you’re caught up to speed, here are the details of Theology on the Rock.

Who: you and your friends

What: Theology on the Rock* (formerly known as Theology on the Rocks – see below for explanation of name change)

When: Wednesday, January 20, 7:00pm-9:00ish-pm – we’ll discuss for about 1.5 hours and then people are free to stick around and discuss more with their friends

Where: Oyster Bar – new location we’re very excited about!  There is a full bar and full menu available that evening during the discussion.

Why: Because the topics we discuss are topics people enjoy discussing!  For those who shudder because of introverted tendencies, it is equally as fun to just come and listen too – you do not have to share your opinion…but we’d like you to do so.

Topic: “Church in America – R.I.P?” Theology on the Rock is about to become the best forum in Little Rock for discussing the thorniest issues of our day. January’s topic is, “Church in America R.I.P.?” What role does church play in American culture? What role should it play or not play? Is church relevant or just a relic; a help or a hindrance to a better life, city and country? Come grab a brew, give your religious or irreligious views, and lend an ear to others’. Free and open to absolutely everyone.

* Theology on the Rock – as a note; our event formerly known as “Theology on the Rocks” has changed it’s name to “Theology on the Rock” – see here for a quick run-down for why:  pomomusings blog So basically the twist with our new name is that we’re playing off the nick-name of Little Rock as “the Rock”.  If after this name change somebody decides to pursue something against us, then so be it.

Feel free to pass this email along to all your friends and we’ll see you next Wednesday, January 20th at 7pm!

– Midrash…commentary on culture

 
2 Comments

Posted by on January 12, 2010 in culture, midrash, theology

 

Tags: , , , , , , ,

email conversation with Tad

Recently I gave Tad DeLay the book,  Structure of Scientific Revolutions, by Thomas Kuhn; this book continually has had a profound impact on my life in the way it has shaped my life overall and also with influencing culture via Midrash. (sidenote – my #1 favorite book is “Inferno, by Dante Alighieri, translated by Elio Zappulla)

As a bit of context for what I’m about to post, in his book Kuhn relays how people and/or institututions naturally resist paradigm changes and also what happens when people and/or institutions start to change their paradigms. Paradigms aren’t small changes people make in their lives – it’s not changing from  Maple & Brown Sugar Oatmeal to Cinnamon & Spice Oatmeal.  Paradigm changes are major changes of believing the earth is round vs. flat, or that the Sun is the center of the universe, or as moving from an atheist to a follower of Christ. These changes have a profound impact on the way an institution behaves and the way a person lives their life.  So taking that brief context into consideration below is a brief email conversation Tad and I had (his email first and then my reply) about a section he read in Kuhn’s book and some keen thoughts he sent my way. Maybe it makes sense, maybe it doesn’t, but I thought it was worth posting.

…………………………………………………………………………………………………………………..

Tad:

…………………………………………………………………………………………………………………..

I had a thought on theology today while reading Kuhn. In a scientific paradigm shift, kuhn explains how a shift is initiated when an anomaly is found that is unexpected by current paradigm. So it happens as a result of the scientific method, but actually becomes philosophical because you have to move beyond normal science to explain what you are seeing.

So how about this as a correlate in theology: though theological discovery comes as a result of study of scripture ( like sci method), I can’t think of a single theology in history that did not require the theologian to move outside of scripture into pure philosophy in order to produce a new thought. So maybe theological discovery ‘requires’ that we move beyond the bible to get started ?? Sounds a bit foolhardy, but I can’t think of a single example in theological innovation ( good or bad) in which this was not the case

Sent from my iPhone

…………………………………………………………………………………………………………………..

Me:

…………………………………………………………………………………………………………………..

I think there’s some good truth in that.  In my opinion it’s not that we discard scripture (and you obviously weren’t saying that), but the way we interpret scripture moves us to, “if X, then Y” while still balancing it with scripture, our experiences, other books, mentors, etc.  So I think they all go hand in hand – it’s like you said going beyond scripture to start things.  God tells us to use our heart soul  and mind. He didn’t say everything you need is completely found in the Bible.

 
2 Comments

Posted by on December 24, 2009 in culture, midrash, theology

 

Tags: , , , , , , ,

upcoming blogposts from yours truly…

I’ll be posting some thoughts on the movie “planet 51”, our all or nothing society, a conversation between a friend and I on if the Bible is absolutely everything we need, and some more on word intentionality and of course some good cigar and beer recommendations.  I just need to find some time!

First recommendation: Rocky Patel Renaissance cigar.  I had this over thanksgiving with my brother in law (he enjoyed his first ever Rocky Patel the Edge) and I must say this cigar actually can give the Edge a run for it’s money; although it is a little more expensive $12.50 vs. $8.50. It was a very smooth draw, has a little bit of spice and is just as tasty as the Edge; you could consider the difference between these two cigars as Vino’s Pale Ale to Diamond Bear’s Pale Ale – if you never have had either of those you don’t know what I’m talking about. sorry. 😉  The Renasissance has an Ecuadorian Sumata wrapper and a blend of Ecuadorian and Nicaraguan filler.  I also employed the use of my bullet cutter for the first time and I think I’m now a convert to the bullet cutter.

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on December 3, 2009 in culture, midrash, theology

 

Tags: , , , , , , , , , ,