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Three Ways to Enhance Your Meditation

Three Ways to Enhance Your Meditation

While your actions certainly do make a difference in your overall happiness and spiritual health, we also must take the time to sit back and heed instruction. Time spent meditating allows you to listen to what God has to say to you, and it requires you to really listen and remove yourself from the many cares you experience during the course of any day.

Whether your meditation time consists of just a few minutes after you get the kids to bed or several hours in the morning as the sun rises, this time allows you to grow as a person, reflect on your life, plan for your future, and develop stronger character. There are three things you can do to ensure you’re making the most of this valuable investment of time.

1. Cooling Mattress Pads

cooling-mattress-padOne of the best places to be as we meditate is lying down in bed. This allows you to get into a comfortable position and more easily allow you to focus on the deep thinking you’re about to embark on. According to Learning Mind, when we meditate, our body temperatures are known to lower. This is also true as we drift off to sleep after a long day.

A great way to encourage relaxation in your meditate lying down in bed is to invest in a mattress pad with a cooling factor. These products begin cooling the body temperature more quickly, allowing you to more quickly transition into a meditative state. It can also significantly increase your comfort level, especially if it’s warm in the room, and comfort is a highly important factor in meditation.

2. Considering Your Diet

breakfast-mealWe don’t often associate what we had for breakfast or lunch when deciding how we can increase the quality of the little time we have to spend alone. However, the old adage “you are  what you eat” holds a lot more truth than many give it credit for. As the Harvard Business Review points out, the foods we eat have a direct impact on overall productivity whether that be work you’re doing with your hands or your mind. Just a few types of foods and their impact on your meditation include:

  • Fried, oily, and spicy foods can make you fidgety and less able to focus.
  • Canned and non-vegetarian foods can cause you to drowsy.
  • Fresh foods help keep you feeling light, so try to opt for foods on the outermost areas of the grocery store and avoid the aisles as much as possible.

3. Consider Group Meditation

group-sharing-at-the-beachMeditation is typically done while alone, and this certainly is an effective way to get in better touch with both God and yourself. However, consider inviting like-minded individuals to join you on occasion. This allows for you to become more engaged in your own meditation when you’re able to share your personal experiences with others. Furthermore, with the motivation of others, you are more likely to stick with a regular meditation schedule.

 

Getting Closer With God

We are encouraged in the Bible and other types of religious texts to take the time to speak with God through prayer. However, what all too many of us fail to do regularly and thoroughly is to take the time to listen to how God’s trying to answer us. Through regular meditation, you can develop a stronger relationship with the higher power that has a plan for us all, and these three helpful tips can help you make the most of this precious time.

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It’s a Pew, Not a P.U.

It’s a Pew, Not a P.U.

The Lord may excuse you, accept you and love you if you have bad breath, but other humans may not. People visit the church to get nourishment from the pew, not discouragement from the P.U. As church folk, you must be mindful of the fumes that you emit during the Hallelujahs and hymnal praises. Only the Holy Spirit has the right to knock people down in the church. Your breath shouldn’t do that. Use these tips to ensure that your assembly with the congregation is a fresh one.

Stay Hydrated at All Times

 

lemon waterOnly Christ can give you the true living water, but Deer Park and other such manufacturers can offer you the bottled water.Do drink the bottled water and ensure that you get eight glasses of it in your system every day. Water washes away bad breath by removing some of the bacteria in your mouth and helping to clear the rest of your body of vile contents. Gatorade is an acceptable substitute only if you cannot tolerate any form of water. Otherwise, you can drink flavored sparkling water, or you can add a pinch of lemon to your regular water.

 

 

 

Floss and Irrigate Your Mouth

oral irrigatorLodged food particles are some of the main culprits of bad breath. The particles rot away inside of your mouth and produce a highly unfavorable aroma. You must floss to eliminate this issue. Many people are moving away from traditional dental floss and using water flossers. These electric units run a stream of water in between the teeth and dislodge the particles that way. Nine out of 10 dental professionals recommend water flossers because of their level of precision. Pearlywhytes offers a detailed look at several of the top options. You can select the option that looks like it will work for you.

 

Use Mouthwash that Does Not Contain Alcohol

mouthwashMouthwash can be a huge helper for you as long as you do not choose a brand that has alcohol in it. Even the most seemingly effective brands have alcohol in them, which causes mouth dryness. To maximize your oral health and tame your breath, you should use a product that is alcohol-free. Biotene is an example of a brand that works well in preventing dry mouth situations.

 

 

Chew Some Gum

chewing-gumGum chewing is an act that can help to eliminate bad breath in several ways. First, chewing gum activates the salivary glands, which releases saliva. Saliva is your friend when it comes to bacterial cleansing. Secondly, the gum releases a pleasant odor that can neutralize bad breath, at least for a little while. The best gum to chew is gum that has cinnamon in it, such as Big Red. Cinnamon has antimicrobial properties in it as well as anti-inflammatory agents. Specialists say that cinnamon helps to prevent cavities. You can possibly chew your way to dental health.

Tame Your Tongue

The book of James goes into a lengthy discussion about how difficult it is to tame the tongue. The author refers to the tongue as an unruly evil that is full of poison. The author also says that the tongue can defile the whole body. That rings true from a spiritual aspect as well as a nasal aspect. Not many people will care to get to know the rest of you if your tongue ejects bacterial poison at them when you breathe. You can combat this little issue by using a tongue cleaner. A tongue cleaner allows you to scrape away bacteria and get to those hard-to-reach places that can cause halitosis.

You should be able to assemble with the brethren and enjoy a non-malodorous service by following the tips mentioned above. You can have confidence that your praise will be pleasant to those around you.

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Church Yard Maintenance Made Easier

Church Yard Maintenance Made Easier

As representatives of God on Earth, it’s important that Christians portray to the rest of the world what our way of living looks like. A great way to achieve this is to ensure you’re doing what you can to reflect an aesthetically-appealing presence of your place of worship. Whether you’ve never done anything special to maintain your church yard or just want some ideas on how to spruce yours up for the community to enjoy, there are a few things you can start doing to create a positive image.

Update Your Lawn Tools

robotic lawn mowerMost of us possess the main ingredients when it comes to lawn care tools. While a functional lawnmower is a staple, there are so many new and exciting machines available to maximize your maintenance success. Finding a good weed eater and more of the latest tools in lawn care has never been easier, and just a few you should consider investing in include:

  • Zero-turn mower
  • Battery-operated weed eater
  • Cordless mulching mower
  • Electric leaf shredder
  • Cultivator
  • Wood chipper
  • Hedge trimmer

Test and Improve Soil

Flowers and other flora can make a significant difference in the overall appearance of your church’s lawn, and what better way to pay tribute to God than by displaying just a sample of the beauty of His creation. However, in order to ensure your additions thrive, it’s a good idea to test and improve your soil.

You can start the process by contacting your local Cooperative Extension office. They can send a professional to test the soil. When they do, they will be checking to see if the soil is acidic, neutral, or alkaline through pH testing. The following measures can be taken to correct problems:

  • Soil is acidic- Acidic soil makes for a perfect breeding ground for nuisances such as weeds and diseases. It also makes various pesticides ineffective. To counteract acidic soil, lime can be used. This introduces a natural source of calcium and magnesium to encourage plant growth.
  • Soil is alkaline- Soil that’s alkaline typically occur in areas with little rainfall and can make it difficult for plants to receive the nutrients they need for optimal growth and health. In order to reduce alkalinity in your church’s soil, you can apply:
    • Soil conditioners with sulfur or gypsum
    • Sphagnum peat moss
    • Organic compost

For more information on the overall health of your church’s soil, you can visit the Government of Canada’s Canadian Soil Information Service.

Mow the Right Way

lawn-mowerMowing can prove to be a mundane task, and we typically just complete the job in rows until the entire lawn is finished. However, there are some helpful tips you should employ to maximize efficiency and quality of the work being performed. A few of these include:

  • Clear any debris ahead of time.
  • Review the turfgrass mowing height requirements to ensure you’re able to correctly prepare your lawn mower blade position.
  • Mow when grass is dry.
  • Mow moving forward.
  • Compost your bag clippings.
  • Keep mower blades sharpened and balanced to reduce the spread of disease and pests.

An Investment Worth Making

investmentWe only have one life to live, and walking in the footsteps of God is a great way to ensure you can live yours to the fullest. By following these tips, you can encourage both your flock and the community to follow the right path. You hold the keys to the creation of a positive image of your church in the community, and it all starts with their first impression when they drive by the church yard.

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Christian Love – The Best Gun Control?

Christian Love – The Best Gun Control?

gun salesAs the seemingly endless debate over second amendment rights continues, gun sales have increased. One could argue that people are buying guns while they can, with the fear that they may not be able to do so at some point in the future. Along with the sale of guns goes the sale of accessories as well. Individuals looking for the best rifle scopes, for example, can find products and information, at Ship Mate List.

 

The information found online at http://gun-control.procon.org/, contains a lengthy list of arguments for and against gun control. After reviewing the points made by people on both sides of the issue, it becomes obvious that gun control is a subject that will continue to be debated for a long time. Christians may even find themselves wondering what the appropriate view from a biblical perspective is.

Since all the books of the Bible were obviously written long before the invention of gun powder, guns are not mentioned. Therefore, it is necessary to base our convictions on the basic principles taught by the Bible. One does not have to read very far into the Bible to find a record of the first murder. Genesis 4:8 tells us that Cain attacked and killed his Able, his brother. From that, it is easy to conclude that gun control will not prevent murder. When guns were not available, people simply used other weapons. For example, in Judges 3:16, Ehud made a short double-edged sword that he used to kill the king of Moab. Judges 4:21 tells of Jael driving a tent peg through Sisera’s head to kill him.

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Can we fairly say that banning guns will stop murders? The answer is no, since brutal murders have been taking place long before the concept of guns. It is likewise unreasonable to think that a person whose intent is to break the law will be stopped from obtaining a gun because the law says he or she can’t have one. In this situation, the gun control law will do little more than assure criminals that they are less likely to be confronted with guns by the law abiding citizens they intend to hurt. Could this be why cities with the toughest gun control laws seem to have the highest crime rate in crimes involving guns?

 

Gun safety instructors will tell you that, more often than not, it is not necessary to fire the gun when it is used for protection. The threat alone is enough to scare off a would-be attacker. Therefore, is it fair to take this protection away from responsible people? Since laws will not stop criminals from breaking laws, and since murders have been taking place throughout history, perhaps there is a better way.

Christian LoveIn I Corinthians 13, Paul wrote about the better way of Christian love. Paul also spoke at length about salvation by grace through faith rather than the law. He goes on to say that the law is then established by faith. What this means is that Christian love does not require a law to prevent murder. Since laws do not prevent violence, perhaps the promotion of Christian values should be at the forefront of our discussions rather than seen as a politically incorrect subject to be discussing. The promotion of Christian love would go further in reducing violence than would enacting more laws that criminals are likely to find a way around anyway.

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Christianity & Science: Friends Or Foe?

Christianity & Science: Friends Or Foe?

For years, some people have seen science and religion as enemies, battling over leadership in this culture. Others see them as separate facts of life that remain unrelated and atheists are saying that science is debunking religion and superstition of all forms. Even though none of those voices hint at the positive relationship between science and Christianity, there are several ways the relationship between the two can be viewed.

Are They Separate?

One of the only ways that you can ease the conflict between Christianity and science is to view them as two totally different things. The one way to do that is to think about science as the knowledge of the world and its behaviour and think about religion as morality, God, and the afterlife. If they are addressing different beliefs, then they cannot conflict.  the reason there is such conflict is because there is a lack of understanding of the fundamental differences between the two.

 

Christianity vs ScienceEverything in the science and religion world is at peace until someone claims that the Bible answers a scientific question and science answers a question about God, the the conflict erupts again. This is why it is best to keep them separate.

Science and Christianity Enhancing Each Other

Most of the time we can classify a question as scientific or biblical, but there are also those few questions that are on the borderline. The categories of these questions include evolution, medical ethics, and climate change. According to Pope John Paul II, “Science can purify religion from error and superstition; religion can purify science from idolatry and false absolutes. Each can draw the other into a wider world, a world in which both can flourish”. By guiding the practical application of scientific discoveries, science can be positively impacted by faith.

Working Together

Although some believe that Christianity and science should be separated, there are those, such as the evangelicals that believe they can work together. It is proven that 20 percent of the U.S. attends church along with 18 percent of scientists who also consider themselves very religious. A new study has found that 27 percent of Americans do believe that there is a conflict between the two, but sociologists believe that these results will help to change the idea that the two are at ideological odds. For science policymakers and educators, they should not have to approach religion with an attitude of combat rather than approach it with collaboration in mind.
For those who love Christianity and science, there is something called Christian Science. This is the feeling and understanding of God’s goodness.  “He that believeth on me, the works that I do shall he do also”, these are what the teachings are based on, the word of Christ Jesus. Those who practice Christian science are allowed to make their own individual choices about what to think and what to do in each situation, including health care, relationships, employment, and other personal and global issues through prayer. This is a way to get closer to God and humanity without conflict.

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Religious Freedom

Religious Freedom

According to the First Amendment in the U.S. Constitution, everyone in the United States has the right to practice his or her own religion, or no religion at all. The first amendment was meant to keep the government out of religion and guarantee the separation of church and state. This is one of the main reasons why the United States has avoided a lot of religious conflicts that have been responsible for the fall of other nations. There is also the Free Exercise Clause of the First Amendment. This clause gives you the right to worship or not as you choose. You cannot be penalized because of your religious beliefs by the government.

Teaching Religion in Public Schools

This seems to be a hot topic for debate. Half of the nation does not see a problem with incorporating religion with schooling while the other half does. Unfortunately, since public schools are run by the government, they must obey the First Amendment. The schools are allowed to teach about the influences of religion in history and such, but they cannot promote religious beliefs in any way. The only schools that are allowed to do so without criticism are private and parochial schools because they are not government run. Although, even though public schools frown upon religion, students who need to be excused from a school activity because of conflict with their religious beliefs, may do so.

Starting The Day with Prayer

This is another debate that is swirling around the internet, should a teacher be allowed to start the day with a prayer? No. Since 1992, when the Supreme Court decided that graduation prayers are unconstitutional in public schools, it no longer exists. If teachers started doing this, it would give non-believers or the kids of other faiths the feeling that their participation is required. The same goes for student-led prayer, it is unconstitutional. If a student wants hold a private alternative event that includes a prayer, such as a baccalaureate, they can do so but it has to remain off of school grounds.

Is It Okay to Pray in School, Ever?

So, the million-dollar question, is it ever okay to pray in school? Absolutely. Each individual student has the right to pray whenever they please, as long as it does not disrupt anyone else. They cannot try to force others to join in. If a student has been told that they cannot pray at all during school hours, they have the right to exercise their religion is being violated.

Celebrating Religious Holidays in Public Schools

We have all gone into a school and have seen decorations set up for Christmas, Easter, Hannukah and Thanksgiving, is this acceptable? It depends. Making stockings for Christmas, eggs for Easter and dreidels for Hannukah are okay because over a period of time, these have become secular customs. If a student wanted to put on a Nativity pageant, this would be unconstitutional because of its religious meaning.

In public schools, there are no bibles allowed, no praying unless it is to yourself or outside of school and there are no Nativity pageants. Do you think this is unconstitutional? Many people do because back in the day, there was prayer, bible verses and more. This is what religious freedom is all about. You are free to choose to worship or not.

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Philosophical Article On Isis

Philosophical Article On Isis

What drives ISIS, the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria, to go as far as killing people? To what extent are they going after, until they are satisfied? Many people have conjured their own understanding of who these groups of people are, but the world knows how brutal and violent this group can be. They have hundreds of innocents who try to defy them, or even those that just do humanitarian aid.

 

General Information About ISIS

The United States of America has identified and classified as an international terrorist group. They are mainly operating in Syria and Iraq, and its main goal is to establish an Islamic state or caliphate, in the very same area they are occupying, including Lebanon. They are known for other names as well: the Islamic State of Iraq and Greater Syria or the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant.

 

Connection Between al Qaida and ISIS

They were once allied with each other, but at some point in time, they seem to have internal struggles about the role of ISIS over Syria. al Qaida has said that ISIS’s ways in pushing their ideals are too brutal and have gone astray from the current push in toppling the President of Syria, Bashar Assad. Recently, the chief of al Qaida, Ayman al Zawahiri has issued an order to the leader of ISIS, Abu Bakr al Baghdadi, that they should withdraw, including its forces away from Syria, but the leader ignored such order.

 

Scale of Power Between ISIS and al Qaida

There is no exact details as to how much power both group holds, but basing on the recent victories on ISIS’s capture over military power and their control over a large expanse of land in many countries is enough to give them that their influence and power is far greater than al Qaida today. They have shown their prowess by besting the military of Iraq and has been able to resist the assaults by the affiliate of al Qaida in Syria, which is the Nusra Front. The radical philosophy of ISIS has been dismissed by multiple jihadis as too violent and bloodthirsty, but it is obvious enough from their recent successes that it will win many adherents to it. The strength of al Qaida is dependent of their affiliates that are operating in different countries, while ISIS is controlled centrally.

 

ISIS Influence in Raqqa

Ever since IS has taken over the city of Raqqa, it has become a kind of place back in the Stone Age, imposing their laws arbitrarily on the occupants of the city, claiming that the things that were taken for granted are no longer allowed in Islam. Those who oppose their ideals are arrested. Furthermore, they are imposing their exceedingly brutal doctrine through various universities and schools, which is the lifeblood of the culture of the city. A lot of the students from secondary schools are forced to travel to cities that are controlled by the Syrian leadership, and at the same time schoolteachers are even obliged to go through a course that spans a week. If they refuse to attend, they are not allowed to teach. Most of the core subjects are claimed incompatible with the law of God, which is supposed to be important in all kinds of education, such as sports, arts, history, geography, science and philosophy.

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What did Dawkins try to say?

 Clinton Richard Dawkins was born on 26 March 1941. He is an evolutionary biologist ethnologist, and writer. He is a resigned fellow of New College, Oxford, and was also teaching the Public Understanding of Science at the University of Oxford’s from 1995 until 2008. Today he is famous for being an atheist. Voltaire’s anti-Semitism was thorough. In its contempt for the primarily “primitive,” it forestalls greatly that is said about Muslims in Europe and the US nowadays. He is also saying that the Jews never were native philosophers, geometricians, or even astronomers.
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That would major Islamophobe of modern world, famous Richard Dawkins proud, that can be concluded after he said that Nobel Prize winners who were Muslim are fewer than the University of Cambridge and then made a joke about middle ages when Muslims were the most modern group. In the wake up what’s happened in France, I think it’s worth m
aking a couple of points:
1) Free speech is not negotiable. Do we truly want to live in free societies (A question we should consider carefully before answer!)? If so, we must accept offensive, vile, destructive, and reductive speech as part of the bargain.
2) Accepting that those forms of speech will not be censored or punished by the government does not mean that we must personally find them ethically acceptable.
3) Free speech is also a negative right– the right NOT to have words put in your mouth. This goes for pledges of allegiance, motions of solidarity, etc.
4a) Charlie Hebdo magazine is a xenophobic, racist, obnoxious, destructive, reductive exercise in free speech. I want nothing to do with the kind of person who subscribes to such a magazine.
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4b) Charlie Hebdo magazine exists to attack deeply held ideas indiscriminately. They have spent an inordinate amount of time attacking what amount to powerless populations in France (minority populations, relatively economically disenfranchised, socially ‘separate,’ lacking significant representation in government). This is not an action of a brave organization. This is punching down; it’s pure cowardice and it’s despicable.
4c) at the same time, I acknowledge and support their right to be all of those things in physical safety and without official recrimination.
At this moment in history, I think it’s more appropriate to say “I am with the people of Paris, I am not supportive of racist and destructive magazines, but I believe in dissent and the right of the ugly to exist.”
To mock a whole civilization and set of values on the basis of its number of Nobel Prizes, is as disappointing (rationally) as doing the same to women because men have won 20 times as many Nobel prizes, or implying on grounds of race that white Europeans or Americans are superior because they have more Nobels than others.