Sunday April 20 2008 Brain Soup


Saturday was Paint Fest. We had six artists in and we all crammed into the main office, hunched around little painting areas. We chatted and shared ideas and techniques. I managed to get my prototypes done for the studio Tau army. I'm overall satisfied with the dark green and ivory thing; but I just might try one other thing. In the FW Apocalypse book there's a Tiger Shark with these horizontal water-type camo stripes and I might try something like that.
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I really didn't get that much done, though, the plan is to get it all done in short order. And in other Tau news, the army will have maximum one of each type of unit. Normally, I try these one-trick-pony themed armies adn I'm going to break with that this time.
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I would suggest that any army where you take one of each type of unit will be fairly competitive. This is a game design issue. The only thing you have to think about is how the units work together.
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Wait, maybe that's not right. Because we see a LOT of armies coming through and there are definite patterns. For example: I have not seen more than one in ten Tau armies with Stingwings. So, they must suck, right?
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Mike was working on his Blood Angels, so I think that will be the next matchup for a batrep. Renn brought in his Death Korps army which has an impressing amount of Forge World resin in it. Wouldn't it be nice to be single and have no expenses! Oh wait, I remember that and it *was* great... except for the crushing loneliness. Ty was working on some Tyranids. I challenged him to a game, too: My High Elves v his Dwarfs. Yerm, that's a classic matchup.
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And for those of you wondering: it was food poisoning. Brutal. I think it was the shrimp tacos. I wouldn't wish that on anyone.
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Warning: No MORE game-related material in this post. I'm serious. I've got a massive brain stew cooking. Here are my various thoughts.
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Temples
As I watch the "Texas Polygamist" thing unfold on the news, I feel inspired to say that those people really don't have anything to do with current-day Mormons (the regular LDS church). I am a Mormon and married to a descendant of the Mormon pioneers. However, I am a convert to the church and consciously chose it at age 15. And I would choose it again.
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Anyway, I am very familiar with Mormon temples, and indeed I was a worker at a temple for over a year and got to have virtually free access to any part of it. I can say that I didn't ever once run into anything strange or immodest. Quite the opposite, everything about the temple is clean, modest, and uplifting. It is a quiet place, as close to heaven on earth as anything.
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Before I got married in the Salt Lake Temple, I was asked by one of my friends if it was true that Mormons got married naked. Turns out not. That's just one of a huge number of absolutely stupid things circulating around out there. Oh, here's another one I was asked: do they grab your privates during the ceremony and say "these are only for procreation." Good heavens! No! Again, I want to re-iterate that I have never once come across anything immodest or indecent in the temple at all. The opposite is true.
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If you want indecent and immodest, you can find that on FOX!
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When I was investigating the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints as a teenager I started looking for sources of information and so I headed down to the public library. What impressed me is that I found something like eighteen books speaking out against the "Mormons". Why would 80% of the literature decry this particular one? It was completely disproportionate.
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Additionally, what I read from these books that supposedly "exposed" the religion was completely at odds with the extremely positive experience I was having in person. I have since decided there are two "Mormonisms"; the one you actually experience living as one, and the one you read about in books (that supposedly enlighten you but are really just chock full of misinformation, half-truths, and exaggerations).
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The human soul is a receptor for light and truth. If it accepts correct principles and lives them, it becomes more receptive. The soul can sense light and darkness just as the human eye does. Have you ever wandered into a "dark" place? Where it just didn't feel right? And the opposite, a "light" place?
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Hell
Oh, yes, I'm going to take this one on.
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The stereotype of Hell is the old lake of fire and brimstone, which comes from the very end of the Bible, but if read carefully it is presented as a simile-- it is *as* a lake of fire. I mean, it doesn't make any sense. What loving father would put his child in a cauldron of lava? It's like the ultimate cosmic child abuse. To my mind, the concept of hell has been used over the ages indeed for a diabolical purpose: to gain power over other humans as a tool of coercion.
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In the Mormon view of the universe (which I contend matches up with the real universe) the human soul is the offspring of Diety, in the same fashion as one's own child. And what do I wish for my own children? That they grow up into their full potential.
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The universe is a huge place, full of beauty. I came across this scripture recently that deeply impressed me:
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32 And they who remain shall also be quickened; nevertheless, they shall return again to their own place, to enjoy that which they are willing to receive, because they were not willing to enjoy that which they might have received.
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33 For what doth it profit a man if a gift is bestowed upon him, and he receive not the gift? Behold, he rejoices not in that which is given unto him, neither rejoices in him who is the giver of the gift.
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34 And again, verily I say unto you, that which is governed by law is also preserved by law and perfected and sanctified by the same.
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And again in the famous John 3:16-20. A careful reading shows that there is condemnation, but it isn't imposed on a human by God.
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Here's my short version: You get what you want. What you really want.
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That's true in this life, and it's true in the afterlife. There's no lake of fire. Except in ones own mind. And that might just be worse than a real one.
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Clear as the moon, and fair as the sun,
and terrible as an army with banners.
The Book of Mormon has a middle part called "the war chapters". At first, I always skipped past them, but now I see how relevant they are. They show the true place of a Warrior in a society. I think Captain Moroni is my new hero. I've noticed how often he acts counter-intuitively. It's a good read.
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As usual, it's not my intention to come across as preachy. In fact, I don't think I'm a very good person-- I'm just picking away at my imperfections through the years. Again, I am NOT making any claim to any personal goodness or righteousness. This is what's really on my mind, and after all that's what you come to a blog for, right?

3 Comments:

RanAngel said...

From your comments about hell, I think you would enjoy reading a book called "Conversations with God", by Neale Donald Walsch. Ideas about how we create our own experiences, what we really want, I think you'd find it interesting.

I read it not long ago, at a time in my life when I was going through a big shake-up in my head about the way I think spiritually. Even if you think the idea of this guy having such a conversation in the book is a bit iffy, you don't need to put any stock in that. You can just think about the ideas themselves as they are presented.

Oh, and, you're not the only one who's just got over some very nasty food poisoning. Believe me when I say, I know the feeling. Very happy that it's over.

Hooray for being happy!
You're doing good work, so keep it up.

Best regards,
A loyal fan.

bluetablepainting said...

Thank you, RanAngel for the kind words and the book suggestion. I am reading a ton of books right now. I'm working through one called "The Holographic Universe" which has a similar vein. Again, thank you, it's nice to know someone actually reads this.

RanAngel said...

I know that one. I haven't read the book, but I've seen several articles on the topic. Interesting stuff, in a head-spinny kinda way.

Once again, you're not the only one. I also have way too much to read at present. Currently skipping between "The Three Musketeers", "Gormenghast" and one about a guy cataloguing mammals in New Guinea (not as dull as it sounds).

I'm glad you're getting it together again. You sounded like you were going through a tough patch recently (food poisoning not-withstanding).

And what do you think is the point and purpose of a blog if not for random ramblings?

Anyways, as I said, make with the happy and you can't go wrong from there. Keep up the good work.

I'll be watching.
RanAngel

 

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