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Religion

Nobody knows the time or the hour that Jesus will return to Earth, or even what form he will choose. It could be 4000 years from now, a million years from now, or it could be that he never even left. It could be that it’s incumbent upon us to change the world and change ourselves to prepare for his arrival. But one thing’s for sure — destroying the world will not get Jesus to return. Only embracing it will, but not in a physical way — in a mental way, for even a man who has looked upon a woman with lust has committed adultery in his heart.

I grew up not believing in any particular religion, but now I see that religion fulfills a critical need in peoples life — the belief in something permanent and unchanging outside themselves in an impermanent and changing physical world. Trying to tear down religion might be the right step at the level of fear, and ignoring religion might be the right step at the level of hope, but only embracing it is the right step at the level of love, tolerating it at the level of perfection, and loving it at the level of imperfection. As in the words of Data from Star Trek: The Next Generation, “to love him was to know him, and to know him was to love him.”

Therefore, it’s very important to first embrace religion, then reject it, and then recapitulate. Most people only go through this process once or twice in their lives, and if they go through it more than that they feel like a failure, when in fact they are much more successful at their human mission than people who never change mental states.

If you go through this process process too frequently, you might have a mental disease such as bipolar “disorder” or schizophrenia. If you don’t go through the process of recapitulation enough, you might suffer a midlife or even a quarter-life crisis. And if you go through it everyday, you might be a Beethoven, Tolstoy, or Einstein just waiting to emerge.

Hope is a level of consciousness lower than knowledge, but faith is a higher level than both combined. It takes courage to stay true when the whole world seems to be against you, because in truth, the whole world loves you, but this doesn’t mean you should embrace strangers, because the world commits itself to actions discordant with its beliefs. There are rights, and then there are privileges, but you can’t earn privileges — they must be given to you, and all privileges are the work of Satan, not Jesus.

Be careful in your worldly affairs, for nothing in this world can truly determine your fate in the afterlife besides your actions. Normally, your thoughts determine your actions, but in some people this isn’t true, so it may be best to just disregard bad thoughts instead of wasting time analyzing where they came from.

Photo: Stamp Collecting

Photo: Stamp Collecting

Stamp collecting is so much fun. :) This is a package Dad and I were mailing to Polyester Books in Fitzroy, Australia. It would have been more economical to mail a bigger package because 8 oz. cost us $7.32 to mail.

Canon PowerShot SD790 IS, 1/60, F2.8, 6.2mm, ISO80, 2010-11-02T12:01:24-04, 20101102-160124rxt

Location: Thripp Residence, Ormond Beach, FL  32174-7227

Download the high-res JPEG or download the source image.

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License. Credit me as Richard X. Thripp and link here.

Photo: Pink Hibiscus

Photo: Pink Hibiscus

Pink Hibiscus flowers at Daytona State College, against a blue cloudless sky.

Canon Rebel XTi, EF 50mm 1:1.4, 1/800, F4.5, 50mm, ISO100, 2010-12-02T12:31:47-05, 20101202-173147rxt

Location: Daytona State College, 1200 W. International Speedway Blvd., Daytona Beach, FL  32114

Download the high-res JPEG or download the source image.

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License. Credit me as Richard X. Thripp and link here.

Photo: Red Hibiscus

Photo: Red Hibiscus

A red Hibiscus in someone’s yard I found while going for a walk in October 2010.

Canon Rebel XTi, EF 50mm 1:1.4, 1/125, F5.6, 125mm, ISO100, 2010-10-05T18:05:50-04, 20101005-220550rxt

Location: Ormond Beach, FL  32174

Download the high-res JPEG or download the source image.

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License. Credit me as Richard X. Thripp and link here.

PHP echo quotes

Whenever I write PHP code, I always use single quotes to echo text, escaping apostrophes and necessary single quote marks with backslashes. Since “double quotes” are much more common in English than ‘single quotes,’ this requires less escaping, and the PHP parser parses single quotes slightly faster because it does not check the string for variables. For example,<?php $test = 100; echo ‘$test’; ?> will return “$test” whereas <?php $test = 100; echo “$test”; ?> will return “100”. Expanding on this, to include variables in single quote echo s, print s, printf s, die s, etc., they must be concatenated like so: <?php echo ‘Today is ‘ . $date . ‘ and the weather is ‘ . $current_weather . ‘!’; ?>. As you can see, I included spaces around the single quotes around the concatenation because those are the English spaces on the left and right sides. This is not necessarily the best way to write statements, but it’s the way I prefer and it’s best to stick with one style of programming (house style) and use it consistently. The same statement could be written as <?php echo “Today is $date and the weather is $current_weather!”; ?>, but that could get confusing later due to the way the human mind works.

Sometimes, it may be necessary to construct conditions based on idiosyncrasies in the English language, i.e. plural forms like <?php if($dog_count == 1) $word = ‘dog’; else $word = ‘dogs’; ?> or suffixes like <?php if(substr($num, -1) == ‘1’) $suffix = ‘st’; elseif(substr($num, -1) == ‘2’) $suffix = ‘nd’; elseif(substr($num, -1) == ‘3’) $suffix = ‘rd’; else $suffix = ‘th’; ?>. These are best handled with reusable functions.

Human Nature

Human nature is to be able to oscillate between polarities without changing states. Men naturally suppress this and women naturally embrace this, which is why women tend to engage in backwards post-rationalization and most men choose not to understand why.

One of the reasons why you see more acronyms, initalisms, innuendos, and euphemisms now is because our controllers, be them space aliens, the Pentagon, the European Union, Queen Elizabeth II, or Pope Benedict XVI, want to polarize the people between clean and dirty minded, kill the clean minded people, and foster the dirty minded people. This is either a Really Bad thing or a Really Good thing, depending on your current State of Polarity.

Most people adopt a neutral state of polarity that is either positive or negative, but never neutral. I choose a neutrally negative state of polarity (like an electron instead of a proton), so I see the New World Order as being a very bad thing.

Throughout your life, you have the free will to choose whoever and whatever you want to be. Because of advanced technologies, new and unprecedented freedoms are emerging for humanity. For example, you now have the freedom as a man to have sex freely (contraception + social acceptance), marry other men (Massachusetts), dress up like a woman (Ed Wood as Johnny Depp), or even become a woman, and if you do not have the money to afford sex change surgery, you can choose to increase your income or petition the State. As a woman, you have even more freedom, because you can choose to either be soft or rugged, i.e. a princess or a tomboy.

At the same time as these new freedoms emerge for humanity, new and unprecedented responsibilities emerge, legitimizing the philosophical argument that humans do not have free will, but instead, we have a collective, singular will. This would be the best State to present ourselves to space aliens with, but because there is a backlash against this, nationalist movements are emerging, which you see now in Egypt and the Middle East. In fact, according to Alex Jones, gas is going to go up to $4-$5 a gallon by the end of this year and we are going to see the collapse of the U.S. federal government unless a significant change in course is immediately procured. The 1990s brought us the Internet, which kept the U.S. afloat throughout the 2000s, despite the significant real estate bubble, but it’s possible another, more advanced bubble is about to form in the 2010s, thanks to companies like Google, Facebook, and to a lesser extent, Microsoft, Raytheon, and Lockheed-Martin. We will definitely be seeing a roller coaster ride in the price of precious metals including, but not limited to, gold, silver, platinum, palladium, nickel, copper, and zinc (editor’s note: in reality, all metals are infinitely precious compared to greenbacks).

All great freedoms are actually both great freedoms and great responsibilities simultaneously, because with freedom comes power and with power comes responsibility. A person incarcerated for life in a supermax prison has either the minimum or the maximum freedom depending on his oscillating state of mind, because he can choose to be a slave or he can attempt escape, which would be next to impossible. This is why in the Mission: Impossible television series the viewer is told to believe in the impossible, by believing that the good guys will win despite the title of the TV show indicating that their mission is impossible. In reality, their mission is squarely possible, but it is necessary for them to adopt the state of mind that it is impossible in order to accomplish the task.

One example of a great freedom that also has great responsibilities is tattooing. In Central Florida, tattoos are an integral part of redneck culture, because you have the freedom to instruct your tattoo artist to tattoo anything on your body, but once it’s there, it’s very difficult if not impossible to remove. In all matters of great important or suspicious unimportance, great caution or no caution must be used. The body is the Temple of the Lord.

Photo: Chairs and Tables

Photo: Chairs and Tables

Chairs and tables outside of the cafeteria at Daytona State College, over winter break when contractors were re-tiling the floor.

Canon Rebel XTi, EF 50mm 1:1.4, 1/100, F4.5, 50mm, ISO800, 2011-01-06T16:53:55-05, 20110106-215355rxt

Location: Daytona State College, 1200 W. International Speedway Blvd., Daytona Beach, FL  32114

Download the high-res JPEG or download the source image.

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License. Credit me as Richard X. Thripp and link here.

Photo: Building 500

Photo: Building 500

Building 500 at Daytona State College, as seen from the balconies on building 100.

Canon Rebel XTi, EF 50mm 1:1.4, 1/200, F2.8, 50mm, ISO400, 2011-01-05T17:02:08-05, 20110105-220208rxt

Location: Daytona State College, Building 100, Wetherell Student Services and Administration, Floor 4, 1200 W. International Speedway Blvd., Daytona Beach, FL  32114

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This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License. Credit me as Richard X. Thripp and link here.

Photo: Laser Power

Photo: Laser Power

In the future, your electrical outlets will all look like this and everyone will be afraid to use them… just kidding.

Canon Rebel XTi, EF 50mm 1:1.4, 5/1, F20.0, 50mm, ISO100, 2011-01-05T18:16:26-05, 20110105-231626rxt

Location: Daytona State College, Building 100, Wetherell Student Services and Administration, Floor 1, 1200 W. International Speedway Blvd., Daytona Beach, FL  32114

Download the high-res JPEG or download the source image.

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License. Credit me as Richard X. Thripp and link here.

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