Lizards, transgenesis and magic

As you know, I’m participating in April Camp Nanowrimo 2019 and I’m working on a story that I’ve already written. But don’t get yourselves in a twist or outrage. It’s not a long story and as much as I do like it, it has plenty of problems.

A lot of problems. You know how I wrote a checklist of things to do before you write? I didn’t do any of that the first time I wrote the story (let’s call it, “first draft”). As a result, I have a huge problem on genre.

My story follows a character named Dustin, who lives in a world different from us human beings. There’s a light side governed by the sun and the dark side, governed by the moon. This is 24/7, meaning that one part of the world never gets evenings or nights and the other part of the world never gets mornings or days. You can see, there’s a bit of fantasy element to the story. But unfortunately, there’s also sci-fi as well.

I mean, of all the two genres to accidentally mix, why did I choose sci fi and fantasy?

Gaaaaargh!

Do you know what Transgenesis means? This is a type of bio-science that does exist on Earth, but in this other world, the science is a lot more advanced. Transgenesis can happen on a whole new level-the “humans” can mix with “animals” creating hybrids. We can also clone “humans” too.

I’m writing like “this” because since this is on another planet, they’re not exactly humans.  Well, except they ARE human-like except for the mutations.

So, not only do I have aliens on another planet who are humans, but I’ve got science that I don’t understand and an under developed world as well. But, these are early days and one point of Nanowrimo is to write as much as possible. It’s about getting it written, not right. My dilemma is then really, that I want to have by the end of this month, a story with lots of wild imagination and crazy ideas, but also a story that I can READ and work with.

The first draft (current story), is small. I can read it quickly, but I can edit as yet because I haven’t finished creating. Anyway, that’s my writing woes at the moment.

Any thought for advice for me?

Maybe if I pushed through, it would be okay to have a fantasy novel with sci fi elements to it. But…magic. Ugh. Should there be magic in there too? I suppose, as long as I would read this story, it’s okay if not one else does. Haha. If it fails, I’ll post the story here, for a good laugh and to let you all in on what NOT to do when writing a story.

 

 

 

 

 

ten days into Camp Nanowrimo, here we go!

Hi all! I’m sorry for the late post-Camp started over a week ago. But I thought to dedicate the rest of April to camp. -tips, hints and advice on surviving camp whether you win or lose, and also my mediocre advice on writing.

Seriously folks, you should not be coming to me as first choice for advice on writing. But I’m glad you’re here anyway and I’ll try my best to impart my knowledge and wisdom, without sounding like I’m just saying good common sense that any writer would know anyway. Here we go!

Before you even start to write, you need to tick off everything from the checklist below. It’s best to do these things the week before camp starts but if not, that’s okay. Just do it as soon as possible.

Checklist before you write:

  • set up a profile on Camp Nanowrimo
  • Do you want “cabin mates” or do you like to bunk it alone? -Note on cabins: It’s not really that fun in my experience because everyone’s so busy writing their story that they might not reply to you or give you advice. It’s just generally not really a good time. It’s best if you have friends whom you know and arrange a cabin with them.
  • Set up the story on Camp Nanowrimo-eg. Do you have a title, a little synopsis (optional but interesting), a word count goal. I suggest a range between 20 and 100 K words. I’m attempting for the first time, 100k word count goal because I want my novel to be a fully fledged novel, and because I’m cheating a little bit in that I’m writing on top of a story that I’d already written. (more on this later).
  • What’s your genre? Use this time to research both for the content and plot of your story, but also your genre. If you write in a specific genre, then you have rules to follow. These rules can limit and squash you, but they can also be used as restriction to play around and work with. It depends on your outlook. In my experience, a little direction goes a long way in creativity.
  • Who are your characters? -normally for any kind of nanowrimo, you don’t need to plan a lot, if at all. But it does help in the long run (because it can be a very long and gruelling month), if you have an idea of who you are writing about, why and for what kind of audience. Just saying, it helps in the long run in terms of, getting back on track, concentration and motivation. You will probably trip over yourself at some point this month but with a bit of planning written down, you will have more chance to trip over yourself less.

So there you have it! My quick checklist of things to do before you write. And really, no matter when we write, whether it’s during Camp Nanowrimo or a normal month, we should plan ahead, at least a little bit. We need to have knowledge before we write, otherwise, we’d be using things we’ve seen in the movies. Those movie plots don’t make the best books.

What’s your checklist? Is there anything you would add or take away from the list? What’s your checklist of things to do before you write a blog post?

 

 

Four domains of spirituality

It’s really annoying for me that I can’t remember what book I originally got this information from. But on the bright side, Google has everything. 

There are four domains of spirituality and these are:

  • Personal-relation with self
  • Communal- relation with others
  • Environment -relation with the environment
  • Transcendent- the God stuff or transcendence

Let’s skip the argument over whether or not there is such thing as spirituality and spiritual things. Let’s dive deeper into these four domains to gain a clearer understanding on what they are and how we can have spiritual well being in all four domains.

Personal-relation with self

Personal domain—wherein one intra-relates with oneself with regards to meaning, purpose and values in life. Self-awareness is the driving force or transcendent aspect of the human spirit in its search for identity and self-worth.

The personal domain is about the big questions in life such as What’s my purpose? Why do I exist? What is the meaning of life? It also includes:

  • questions about self and life
  • Purpose
  • Values
  • Self awareness
  • Self identity and self worth
  • Journey of discovery

A lot of people go on journey of discovering and finding out who they are and what they’re made of. I’d place a bet that the reason why people enter mid life crisis is because so far, they had been participating in the Rat Race while at the same time, ignoring these questions. Now, they are in a point in their life where they can’t ignore their self awareness anymore. Who are they and why are they here?

Don’t ignore the questions you may have even if they’re scary questions. Face them head on and gain understanding and knowledge. Find out who you are and what you’re made of. What are your values? What do you want out of life?

Communal Domain-relation with others

Communal domain—as shown in the quality and depth of interpersonal relationships, between self and others, relating to morality, culture and religion. These are expressed in love, forgiveness, trust, hope and faith in humanity.

The relationships we have with the people around us is not only a physical thing but has a spiritual aspect to it as well. In christian culture, we say that our relationships have three people, me, you and Jesus.

Jesus is always in the centre of every relationship that we form because without him, there’s no chance that the relationship would last.

However, I believe this because I’m dependent on Jesus. Whether or not you’re a christian like me, or a strong atheist with an atheist youtube channel, you can form long lasting relationships. Just know that there’s a spiritual aspect to it.

I love learning about this domain because for many years, one thing I believed was that morals come from the bible. However, people who do not read or follow the bible are not all immoral. Likewise, (and unfortunately so), people who do read the bible seems to use it to go down a destructive and harmful path.

The communal domain means that morals are a part of our spirituality, but not necessary only for people who are christians. This makes me happy because it’s something that makes sense, that doesn’t view God in a bad light and can also make peace with secularist.

There are many reasons why I think we as humans are bad at developing spiritually, but one reason I’ll point out is that we don’t link inter personal relations and morality with the communal domain of spirituality. We don’t realise this aspect of these things.

Environment domain

Environmental domain—beyond care and nurture for the physical and biological, to a sense of awe and wonder; for some, the notion of unity with the environment.

 

The indigenous people of America were good at this. They were one with nature. They were in awe of the nature surrounding them and some took it to far and worshiped nature. One of my purpose in life is to care for the people around me, the resources we share and also the animals that are under our mercy and rule. I’m not a tree climbing girl or an outdoors person, so this domain is one that I admit I need the most work on.

At the same time, I think these three domains are pretty difficult and there isn’t a lot of guidance for spiritual development. It’s a good thing that this year, I’m asking questions and I’m exploring spirituality in general but also on a personal note.

This is a journey I’m taking this year. A journey of self identity, self awareness but also of taking care of what I have and the friends in my life.

Trascendental -relation with something beyond

Transcendental domain—relationship of self with some-thing or some-One beyond the human level (i.e., ultimate concern, cosmic force, transcendent reality or God). This involves faith towards, adoration and worship of, the source of Mystery of the universe [41].

Russell Brand is an example of someone with a good relationship with the transcendence. If you watch any of his videos on youtube, you’ll soon be able to see how the transcendence, and his belief in something beyond that which we can see, has helped to shape and form the man he is today.

Transcendence is probably the domain that most people associate with spirituality with the exception of those who are “spiritual but not religious”.

Fun fact: I technically fall under this category as I don’t think of myself as religious, but I digress.

I used to be a panicky little squirrel who was concerned for people who didn’t know what would happen after they died. I was scared of hell. Today, I spit in hell’s open pit. But I’m still on edge a little bit. Like with WBC, it’s something I can’t completely let go of and if you don’t understand, you will when I write about my heavy heart.

I think I was going about things the wrong way. It’s not the transcendent domain that’s the important bit, it’s all the other domains that are actually important to everyone even to secularists.

Because we all will go through death but no one ever talks about it.

We all have questions but no one seems to provide us with answers.

We all want good relationships but there are a lot that gets in the way of that.

So, I think, personally, I should focus on the other three domains, connect with this world that I’m in, this life that I have right now, develop in these three domains and hopefully one day, help others develop spirituality in these domains too.

 

 

 

 

You realise the top buttons work, right?

Hey everyone, today is a lighter post which seems appropriate since it’s the last time I’m going to write about or even mention WBC. I mean, I won’t forget them and I will probably write about them in the future but that’s in the far distance.

I’d like to quickly point you to the links at the top of my website which are where I keep all my pages for your convenience. Today’s post is actually at the top under the heading, “company”.

It’s a poem about WBC. It could just as easily have been under the heading, “care”, but I thought “company” was a good reminder that the world gets very small when we have to share it with someone we hate.

So, as hard a sit might be, let’s not have hatred in our hearts. Let’s surround ourselves with good company, and not haters.

One last thing about WBC and other haters out there

I feel sorry for them. Even more than my other emotions, disgust, hatred, anger, sadness, above all of them, I pity them. A lot.

 

Please keep checking the top links for more pages. I will write a mix of pages and posts. Thanks.

A reminder

I appreciate everyone who reads and likes my blog. I would love to return the favour so if you happen to read something of mine that you like, please leave a comment. This is the easier way for me to go to your blog because when I click on your icon, I get directed to Gravatar. But when I click on your name, it directs me to your website.

 

Brainwashed by the Westboro Baptist Church Part 1/2

I want to talk about a particular family who joined the Westbaro Baptist Church. It is the Drain family. One week ago, I wrote a post on a woman who left that cult after seven years and her name was Lauren Drain. Yes, this is in fact, about the story of her family and how they came to WBC in Topeka.

It all started when Steve Drain went to Topeka to create a documentary that he called, “Hatemongers”. His intention was rational, a reason that most people who support and rally for. He wanted to make a documentary on WBC that would expose them for what they were.-Snake oil sales men.

fox-and-cat

To go from his original intentions, to where he is now and what he’s doing now, is a scary thing and it makes me think twice about entering WBC. By the way, the only reason why I would enter that church would be to write a documentary on the hate mongers. Although, I don’t think they need a book made about them.

WBC is a primitive church meaning it follows the way of what the christian church was like in the old days. This is ‘old days’ as in when the LGBT could not marry and homosexuals were thrown in jail or even put to death.

 

I’m going to say it again-

WBC breaks apart families, not just their own but other families that comes in their cult.

This is one reason why I’m speaking out against WBC and all of their man-made views on everyone. I don’t know how a civil rights lawyer could start a hate cult this big and influential.

A bit of context:

Fred Phelps used to be a good guy once upon a time

He was a civil rights lawyer who fought for African-Americans who claims discrimination in the school or anywhere else. No white lawyer would defend them, so that’s what Fred Phelps did. This is one example of it being okay to go against the grain or the norm, and fight for what you believe.

Then Fred committed perjury and lost his licence. What a shocker that he carries anger towards everyone. But despite the good that he had done in the past, it isn’t enough to condone his present acts now.

And going against the grain this time, will not work in his favour. I was going to write a post on part two of Vice’s documentary, but I’ve decided you can search for the video yourself on youtube. Because I think I’ve said enough.-at least for now. But this isn’t over because as long as there are people like Fred Phelps, who do and say things in the name of the God whom I worship and believe in, I will keep speaking up and I will keep writing about it so that the world may know that this is not okay and I will not sweep this under the rug.

 

 

 

Questioning my faith

Earlier this year, I was devasted and rocked when I found myself reading Genesis (the bible) and writing in another book, questions upon questions. Many of these included homosexuality, dinosaurs and what “the expanse of heavens” actually mean.

I found myself questioning my faith and watching Atheist youtubers didn’t help either. It didn’t matter if they targeted catholics, mormons, or people with different ideals than mine. I became cynical and rational.

“God couldn’t be real. Surely not. It’s impossible.”

Plus, he didn’t answer any of my dinosaur-related questions.

I knew christians weren’t stupid people. So this stands to reason that we can ask questions. This is only to get a clearer understanding and picture of what we say we believe. If we don’t understand, we can’t explain this to others.

Still, I found that the more questions I asked, the more answers I didn’t have, the more cynical I became.

But then something happened that changed how I felt about what I was doing. I had just come back from Hong Kong and I met my christian friends at an event (more on this in a later post). As I had fellowship with these peeople and worshiped God with people who were secured in their faith, and had an aura of confidence in God, I realised something. I wasn’t asking questions to prove that God wasn’t real. I wasn’t doing it to rennounce my faith and step away from it.

I’m not asking questions to rennounce my faith and step away from it. But I’m asking questions in order to re-build the foundation blocks stronger and steadier and according to what I actually believe.

This is what this short blog post is about. Although it’s short, it was a happy revelation so I hope sharing this might also brighten someone’s day too.

I have to keep looking for answers and keep asking questions because I don’t have a full revelation or a complete big picture yet, but as I search, I’m confident I’ll find what I’m looking for.

Questions to think about:

  1. What do you believe?
  2. Why do you believe this?
  3. Does what you believe actually make sense and feel right to you?

 

 

Why did God make LGBT+ women?

I feel like I’m going to get backlash for this. Look, I don’t have any final or definite answers for you. But I’m bringing this question up because I realised that in my series “Why did God make women?” where I respond to a blog post with the exact same title from “Biblical Gender Roles” website, I was focusing on heterosexual women in marriage.

Both men and women were made to procreate, look after the earth and keep each other company. I’m going to talk about these three points and link them to LGBT+ women (particuarly homosexuals as to talk about the whole spectrum would require a lot more than one post).

We were made to procreate and fill the earth

A lot of christians believe that because God told Adam and Eve to have children, it means that this is the duty of everyone on earth. But this is not right. First on a practicle scale, there’s over 7 billion people in the world so I’d say we’re close to over filling the earth.

Second, not everyone can get pregnant and not everyone want children. Then there are the women who don’t identify as hetero at all. Surely if these women were in an intimate relationship, it would look a lot differently than in a hetero relationship. (Well, not that differently. I mean, the main reason to be with anyone for the rest of your life is to do with love, not making babies).

So while there are many of us who are excited to go down that life path of starting a family, some prefer no children, some will adopt and some will not get married. I mean, we’re so diverse, we can’t possibly say that this is the purpose of every women on the planet.

On another note, the fact that women can bring life into the world is a crazy, scary and amazing gift. So thanks to all you mothers out there who chose to bring life and/or raise a child.

We were made to look after the earth

I insist that yes, this reason still stands. More than ever before, we have reason to look after our earth. This is the only home we have and if we lose it, there’s no second earth to fall back on.

Let’s look after one another. Let’s look after our animals, our sea, our trees and overall, our planet.

We were made to keep men company

As soon as God created Eve, Adam and Eve married. Because of this, many christians believe that men and women need to keep each other company through and by marriage. But for you LGBT folks, this is most likely not the case. Or then again, maybe it is for some of you.

Let’s not be romantic for a second. We are lonely because there isn’t another species or race whom we can converse with like we do with each other. Parrots don’t count.

So yeah, how about we keep each other company? Again, not in a romantic way or through marriage, but just through being friends, being nice to each other. In this way, this really link back to the second reason, how we are to look after the earth.

In a romantic or “marriage” sense”, this is not always true and since the GMB have passed in many countries, it is even more not always true. So no, we weren’t made to marry men or keep them company. We can now be with whoever we want which is great.

But let’s keep each other company because if we don’t, then this earth won’t be big enough for everyone.

It is a compliment that God made us, the counter part to men, who are equals in everyway and side by side, we can join forces to make the world a better place for the next generation of humans.