Happy Easter!!

ktadmin Post in Events & Holidays, Religion,Tags: , , , ,
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Sjesus-resurrection-tomb-maryPE SALVI facti sumus”: In hope we were saved, says Saint Paul to the Romans, and likewise to us (Romans 8:24).

Today, of all days, I thought it appropriate to share some of Pope Benedict’s words:(emphasis mine)

We who have always lived with the Christian concept of God, and have grown accustomed to it, have almost ceased to notice that we possess the hope that ensues from a real encounter with this God. The example of a saint of our time can to some degree help us understand what it means to have a real encounter with this God for the first time. I am thinking of the African Josephine Bakhita, canonized by Pope John Paul II. She was born around 1869—she herself did not know the precise date—in Darfur in Sudan. At the age of nine, she was kidnapped by slave-traders, beaten till she bled, and sold five times in the slave-markets of Sudan. Eventually she found herself working as a slave for the mother and the wife of a general, and there she was flogged every day till she bled; as a result of this she bore 144 scars throughout her life. Finally, in 1882, she was bought by an Italian merchant for the Italian consul Callisto Legnani, who returned to Italy as the Mahdists advanced. Here, after the terrifying “masters” who had owned her up to that point, Bakhita came to know a totally different kind of “master”—in Venetian dialect, which she was now learning, she used the name “paron” for the living God, the God of Jesus Christ. Up to that time she had known only masters who despised and maltreated her, or at best considered her a useful slave. Now, however, she heard that there is a “paron” above all masters, the Lord of all lords, and that this Lord is good, goodness in person. She came to know that this Lord even knew her, that he had created her—that he actually loved her. She too was loved, and by none other than the supreme “Paron”, before whom all other masters are themselves no more than lowly servants. She was known and loved and she was awaited. What is more, this master had himself accepted the destiny of being flogged and now he was waiting for her “at the Father’s right hand”. Now she had “hope” —no longer simply the modest hope of finding masters who would be less cruel, but the great hope: “I am definitively loved and whatever happens to me—I am awaited by this Love. And so my life is good.” Through the knowledge of this hope she was “redeemed”, no longer a slave, but a free child of God. She understood what Paul meant when he reminded the Ephesians that previously they were without hope and without God in the world—without hope because without God. Hence, when she was about to be taken back to Sudan, Bakhita refused; she did not wish to be separated again from her “Paron”. On 9 January 1890, she was baptized and confirmed and received her first Holy Communion from the hands of the Patriarch of Venice. On 8 December 1896, in Verona, she took her vows in the Congregation of the Canossian Sisters and from that time onwards, besides her work in the sacristy and in the porter’s lodge at the convent, she made several journeys round Italy in order to promote the missions: the liberation that she had received through her encounter with the God of Jesus Christ, she felt she had to extend, it had to be handed on to others, to the greatest possible number of people. The hope born in her which had “redeemed” her she could not keep to herself; this hope had to reach many, to reach everybody.

Aside: I love to study history and foreign cultures so the previous passage resonates with me.  It leads nicely into the next passage from the same encyclical from Pope Benedict, which ultimately leads us to ask, is being a good person, good enough, I am increasingly of the opinion that it is not; that much more is expected of us in this life.

Again from Pope Benedict’s Encyclical:

How could the idea have developed that Jesus’s message is narrowly individualistic and aimed only at each person singly? How did we arrive at this interpretation of the “salvation of the soul” as a flight from responsibility for the whole, and how did we come to conceive the Christian project as a selfish search for salvation which rejects the idea of serving others? In order to find an answer to this we must take a look at the foundations of the modern age. These appear with particular clarity in the thought of Francis Bacon. That a new era emerged-through the discovery of America and the new technical achievements that had made this development possible-is undeniable. But what is the basis of this new era? It is the new correlation of experiment and method that enables man to arrive at an interpretation of nature in conformity with its laws and thus finally to achieve “the triumph of art over nature” (victoria cursus artis super naturam). The novelty-according to Bacon’s vision-lies in a new correlation between science and praxis. This is also given a theological application: the new correlation between science and praxis would mean that the dominion over creation -given to man by God and lost through original sin-would be reestablished.

Anyone who reads and reflects on these statements attentively will recognize that a disturbing step has been taken: up to that time, the recovery of what man had lost through the expulsion from Paradise was expected from faith in Jesus Christ: herein lay “redemption”. Now, this “redemption”, the restoration of the lost “Paradise” is no longer expected from faith, but from the newly discovered link between science and praxis. It is not that faith is simply denied; rather it is displaced onto another level-that of purely private and other-worldly affairs-and at the same time it becomes somehow irrelevant for the world. This programmatic vision has determined the trajectory of modern times and it also shapes the present-day crisis of faith which is essentially a crisis of Christian hope.

So, I will leave you on this Blessed of Holy Days with these passages to reflect upon.  I would further ask, if faith is not individualistic, then which is the true path, which path contains Truth you need?

Have a Happy and Blessed Easter

The Way

ktadmin Post in A Zen Thing, Religion, State of Mind, Video,Tags: , , , , , ,
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The Way we should live but usually don’t. As Martial Artists we are supposed to be role models, we usually are not.  Like so many we do things for selfish reasons.  We miss the multitude of opportunities God sends our way to do those small (and big) things and improve the lives of our fellow man.  Selfish.  Any discipline requires some denial of the self, be it diet to lose weight or not watching TV so you can practice that kata or technique a few more times.  If only we would apply that same sacrifice in our dealings with others.  The noise of the modern world seduces us so we can ignore those small important acts of kindness and love which help us grow and find internal peace.  What surprised me was the fact that it was a TVC Thai Life Insurance commercial/public service announcement that inspired me to reflect on this very fact…

Who did you help today?

Women Only?!… Not Cool!

ktadmin Post in Fitness, Training notes,Tags: , , , , ,
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I came across some new footwear from Nike, the Nike Studio Wrap.  See for yourself:

Nike-Studio-WrapsI know!  Perfect for martial arts training, in the sometime less then dirt free Dojo Floor!  Practical, has a cover you can wear on your way home.

Nike-Studio-Wrap-Pack-555173_004_C_PREM

I can do without the other accessories however they could be turned into non-obvious self-defense tools in a pinch… ;-)  There is one really big problem…They are for Women Only!  What was Nike thinking, why are they discriminating against Men who practice Karate (or Yoga)?!  I’ve written Nike but I doubt I’ll get a response…

I wonder how you convert men’s sizes to women’s…?  …Nah…

Dark Chocolate!

ktadmin Post in Diet, Fitness,Tags: , , ,
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Dark-chocolateLike we needed a reason…A new study finally explains why Dark Chocolate is good for your Heath!!   The study, released by Louisiana State University, tested cocoa powders in the digestive tract and found some microbes in the gut use the dark chocolate to improve heart health.  ”Good bacteria in the stomach feasts on the chocolate and then produce compounds that are anti-inflammatory cardiovascular tissues that absorb the compounds, improving your heart health.”

The study’s lead researcher, John Finley, elaborates, saying, “When these compounds are absorbed by the body, they lessen the inflammation of cardiovascular tissue, reducing the long-term risk of stroke.”  (Via HealthDay)

So go ahead, reach for that extra piece of dark chocolate. But while you’re at it, add some fruit. “Scientists say combining dark chocolate with solid fruits like pomegranates and acai could provide even greater benefits.” Dark chocolate is also full of antioxidants and can help reduce blood pressure, ease depression and control blood sugar.  Just make sure your dark chocolate is made up of 70 percent cocoa or more!

Dislocated Shoulder

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Let me tell you a dislocated shoulder hurts!  I wish I had a good story to go along with the dislocation but I don’t.  It is actually embarrassing, I sneezed.  Yup, you read right.  I am recovering from shoulder surgery and I sneezed, thereby dislocating my shoulder Friday afternoon.  Obviously things like always happen late on a Friday or just before a long weekend.  Why, because that is Murphy’s Law.

I decided to get some sleep and see how it felt in the morning.  In the morning the pain was the same and I had a nice egg on the top of my shoulder.  So what am I to do, my shoulder hurts a lot, constant pain, not the comes and goes variety.  If I go to the Emergency Room at the local hospital, I am probably going to wait a minimum of 18 hours, and that is if my arms was mostly severed and there was excessive bleeding.  With a dislocated shoulder I couldn’t imagine the wait.  I had a choice, I could:

  1. reset it myself,
  2. wait in pain until Monday or
  3. take my chances of at the ER and possible contract something worse during the gruelling wait.

Obviously I chose option 1 since I know a little about how my body goes together.  …I wedged myself in a wing back chair, had my wife pull the arm out while I bent and twisted it back into position.  She was not a willing participant but she knew I would find a way to do it myself.  I then iced the shoulder repeatedly through out the day. By Sunday morning the swelling was greatly reduced and the constant pain was gone.  By Monday morning the swelling and 80% of the pain was gone.  I headed to PT.  After looking at me like I was insane (for not going to the ER) they performed some further minor adjustments; during one of my exercises I experienced a sever, sharp sudden pain, which quickly dissipated. I left PT sore but feeling better.  While the dislocation seems to have temporarily pushed back my recovery a week or so things are looking up!

However, when possible go to the Emergency Room.

Karate Dog versus John Voight

ktadmin Post in Entertainment, For Kids, Fun Stuff,Tags: , , ,
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Time for a Friday Funny….

What appears to be an older Mr. Myagi!

Not sure I want to deal with the Karate Tongue any time soon…

Get Karate Fit!

ktadmin Post in Fitness, Karate,Tags: , , , ,
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We are all looking to get in and stay in shape.  If you want to get serious practice Karate!  Karate combines core, cardio and stretching to give you the best workout available.

fitness facts for karateOSU!

Critical Thinking by John Wayne

ktadmin Post in A Zen Thing, Articles of Interest, Politics, Video,Tags: , , , , , , , ,
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This is an interesting interview with John Wayne, from 1975.  It is interesting because what he says in directly applicable to current events.  The Duke speaks to the tactics used by liberals then and still in use today.  Yes, John Wayne is something of a hero for me.  Yes, John Wayne wasn’t his real name; the audio is important for what he says, not necessarily who is saying it.

LANGUAGE WARNING, the audio contains some swears and curses that may not be appropriate for children.

The audio starts out with this quote… “Hell yes, I’m a liberal. I listen to both sides before I make up my mind. Doesn’t that make you a liberal? Not in today’s terms, it doesn’t. These days, you have to be a fucking left-wing radical to be a liberal. Politically, though … I’ve mellowed.”

Another great John Wayne quote:
“I’m quite sure that the concept of a Government-run reservation… seems to be what the socialists are working for now — to have everyone cared for from cradle to grave…. But you can’t whine and bellyache ’cause somebody else got a break and you didn’t, like those Indians are. We’ll all be on a reservation soon if the socialists keep subsidizing groups like them with our tax money.”- John Wayne

The audio is from TonyMacklin.net, the interview took place in 1975.  The complete interview can be heard here.

How to Cure a Cold in a Day (or Two)

ktadmin Post in Control, Fitness, Recipes and Health Facts,Tags: , , ,
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Mid-February I was scheduled to have surgery.  A few days before the surgery, 3 days to be exact, I came down with a terrible head cold.  Two days before surgery I was miserable, the doctor said we would probably have to reschedule if I wasn’t better and I saw no way that was going to happen.  However I was very determined not to reschedule, I was stronger than any cold!  FIrst thing I did was hit the cold with a strict regiment of Sudafed (the good kind), Robitussin and Tylenol, in addition I was drinking 3-4 16 oz glasses of fluid an hour, plus Airborne several times a day.  Since my stomach was fine, I could eat so I consumed the hottest, spiciest food I could get.  It was painful but amazingly helpful for the congestion!

Basically I created what I like to call a hostile work environment for whatever bug had taken up residence in my body.  To my wonders, it worked.  Less than a day and a half after I began my super cold regiment I had surgery with just a tinge of remaining congestion, which surgery seemed to clear up, probably from the oxygen and anaesthesia.  From past experience I have no doubt that if I had not been so aggressive my surgery would have been rescheduled.  Was it the regiment, a sort lived cold or just dumb luck?  Guess I won’t know for sure until the next time I get a cold, though I am in no hurry to find out!

Here are some of the resources I found to help me come up with my cold remedy regiment:

Get Rid of a Cold Naturally Fast
How to beat a cold in 24 hours
10 remedies that do not treat a cold
Cold Remedies

Here are two other neat health tricks that helped me out:

Clear Nose Congestion

While Sudafed works it isn’t always practical, especially at night.  Here’s an easier, quicker, and cheaper remedy to relieve sinus pressure:  Alternate thrusting your tongue against the roof of your mouth, then pressing between your eyebrows with one finger. Basically you are massaging or rocking the vomer bone in your nasal passage back and forth which helps loosen and breaks up your congestion.  It takes about 20 seconds for your congestion to start to drain and you to feel some relief.

Cure a Tickling Throat

A healthy remedy for that tickle in your throat that can cause you to cough and gag.  There is a better way to scratch your throat itch other than a lozenges:  Scratch your ear!  That’s right scratching your ear creates a nerve reflex in your throat that can relieve the tickle causing muscle spasm.

As always, wash your hands, don’t touch your face, drink plenty, get plenty of sleep, exercise, eat healthy; basically live a healthy lifestyle, this is the best way to prevent a cold.  But when the inevitable happens, hope these help you as much as they have helped me.

Happy Saint Patrick’s Day

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st.patrickThis day is not all about leprechauns, shamrocks and green beer.  This is a day to honor and pray to St. Patrick.  He was an influential saint who, 1,500 years ago, brought Christianity to the little country of Ireland.  He was born about 385 in the British Isles, was carried off while still very young during a raid on Roman Britain by the Irish and sold as a slave.  At the end of six years he contrived to escape to Europe, became a monk and was ordained; he then returned to Ireland to preach the Gospel.  During the thirty years that his missionary labors continued he covered the Island with churches and monasteries; in 444 he founded the metropolitan see of Armagh. St. Patrick died in 461.  After fifteen centuries he remains for all Irishmen the great bishop whom they venerate as their father in the Faith.

While St. Patrick most likely did not drive out all the snakes in Ireland (there is no record that there were any) he did convert a nation state, I think driving out the snakes might have been easier!

Read more here.

st.patrick-facts

Have a Happy and Blessed St. Patrick’s Day