Space, and there is a LOT of it.


People talk of how approaching seven billion, or already exceeded it in 2011 of the world population. If you are vegan it is estimate about one acer per person. If you prefer the hunter/gather method. More like ten acres per person. So I am going to take a harder science at that and figured that with technology and more micro-climate awareness etc, it should come out to roughly five acres per person. How? Not all plants need to grow on the surface of earth. Multi-level farming is a fairly new method in terms of how much of it is being done on a large scale. Multi-level has been done for centuries in small gardens around the world. But tackling it for large scale populace is a different methodology.  Right now, most of it in the United States is being done around large cities to decrease the amount of time, effort, and packing it takes to get food to the table. The closer you get, the better the food. Fully ripen food is better and more nutrious than partly ripe, under green, and hard like a baseball!

So for a planet that growing in human population (but many of the animals and needed bugs are not as of now, doing as well. Bees anyone?)

Besides the growing of things to eat, we also need room to take care of our waste, make drinking water (we are way past being able to drink from a stream. Even in the Himalayas tip top mountains there are pollutants! So many who believe that the only way to save the earth is not to have children. Well there is a problem with THAT. Most of those who chose not to have children tend to be well educated and are power brokers. Some use the reasoning that there are too many people to begin with. My argument is this, we are adapting. We are tackling the problem of how to live on a heavily populated world. I for one am  optimistic that we will adapt well because we are survivors first. Co-creators is something that also comes naturally to our speices. Rather than being overly worried about our population numbers, I would be more concern about the man-men (and they do tend to be male) who chose a life of crime and terror control of where ever they live. Drug Lords, Mini Kings, and Zealots of the worst kind (I mean that in a multi-national way btw). What is really pushing the space issue is not so much the number of humanity, but how we share. There is a tremendous desire to OWN things first, share when there is only when there is plenty.

Bit by bit some cultures are changing in seeing that sharing is actually more profitable than keeping the best for yourself, in the long run. For example, multi-level farming (This video site DOES have Captions but they are a bit haphazard to read. If anyone knows a better site with similar information, LMK). Can you imagine a skyscraper being turned into a farming that can feed thousands of people? This site talks just about that. There are amazing benefits when used the right way.

Then there is a more argumentative suggestion too. Start Colonizing other planets. It is a natural progression for us. Something that will take a couple hundred years for us to be fluent in how we do this. There will be casualties as well, any actions to work in non-native soil tends to require the acceptance that death is part of the learning curve. That does not argue that we should not do it. Some might find it odd that a Catholic would argue for us to go to the moon and beyond. After all, don’t I believe that Jesus Christ is coming back one day? Would he gather the people on Mars, the Moon, or Jupiter and other places? Yes he will. What we really need to understand, is that we will be carrying home with us. So how can I argue for us to spend so much resources going off planet when we should take care of what we have right now and right here? It is this, going off planet is very much like having children. It is, in my mind, our birthright to explore. The main thing is to take what we have learned here as humans, and apply it as our best selves, out there as well as at home. Space Travel has had a profound impact on our understanding of who and whom we are. It is not a thing to be feared in that in pricing the blackness we will become less. In fact I have every faith we will find more and greater Glory to God than we can perceive right now. If only because we see it from a new window on to life.

Nancy Louise

Advertisements

Can We Come Home?


President Obama today declared his thoughts on Gay marriage. ( He supports it). My blog is not about the political points he may or may not score with this, but more about what my Church says.

“Catholic teaching proceeds from an understanding of “natural law” which for them serves as the foundation for all correct morality but which most of the rest of society has long since abandoned.” Austin Cline

I chose Austin’s quote (and recommend you read his article as well), because it lays out without bias to either side the plain view of the Catholic theological thinking in plain english terms that even I can understand. Like most loving Catholics, I want my GLBT brothers and sisters to be able to have families as well if they so choose. Yet Natural Law would say One man and One woman. I have however a question.

Natural Law dictates that what is deformed should be left to die and for a long time, many cultures did do this. Other more compassionate cultures did not. However, how much a person could participate within the community was another matter. Deafness was seen as unnatural either by birth or by some other means later in one’s life except perhaps extreme old age. As a results it would be unnatural for those who were deaf or unsound, to marry.  This comes from the

Eighteen Treatises from the Mishna, by D. A. Sola and M. J. Raphall, [1843], at sacred-texts.com

 1. “When a deaf and dumb man marries a sound 1 woman, or a sound man marries a deaf and dumb woman, he may either divorce his wife or keep her, and even as he married her by certain signs [made before witnesses] thus may he divorce her in the same manner. A sound man who had married a sound woman, who afterwards became deaf and dumb, may either divorce or keep her as he pleases, but if she became afflicted with madness, he is not at liberty to divorce her. Should he become deaf and dumb, or mad, he may not divorce her at all. R. Jochanan ben Noori asked, “Why may a woman who became deaf and dumb be divorced, and a husband who thus became affected may not divorce his wife?” They [the sages] replied unto him, “Because there is a material difference in this respect between the two parties, for a woman may be divorced with or without her consent, but the man’s consent is necessary to render a divorce valid.”

This of course is no longer true. The Church was no different until the Enlightenment.  Before that Plato and Aristotle who both help build the foundation and philosophy of natural law believed that the deaf were incapable of outward signs of intelligence since otherwise all humans are born with a perfect abstracts and language within and it only takes time for these things to come forth. It took more than 1500 years after Christ before the idea of natural law concerning disabled people being viewed as a people, and even being allowed to do something as sacred as marriage which seemed so UNNATURAL between either those of sound mind and body and one of not, or two unsound mind and or bodies.

May I ask are we now wrong? Or did we evolve as we did in understanding God’s role in so many more things. For hundreds of years those who misshapen, unappealing, not understood were told to stay and shunned from the Church just as those who are Gay until fairly recently have been. We finally decided as a Church that being Gay in and of itself was not the sin, but to act upon it is.

Yet here we stand today, Deaf Priest good gosh, ten of them at lost count in the United States if I am not mistaken, DEAF!  Sign Language declared by the Pope to be a valid language (with no sound) to say MASS! How UNNATURAL is that to comprehend? Then, it is not is it. For how can God heal, if we reject those who suffer out of fear, those who are different. We NEED each other. Please, can we all come home, finally?

Nancy Louise


When a Child is Gone.


Next to a child being killed, a child stolen is another petrifying fear that sits at every alert Mom and some Dad’s gut. Some parents are more blasé about it than others. My own sister was taken from a grocery cart and almost walked out of a grocery store if it was not for our Mom who just had her back turned for a second to pick something off the shelf had not seen the woman walking past her with my sister in her arms. I was with my Mom and shocked that something could happened with her between the two of us. She was supposed to be safe! From then on, any child with me, was alway, always within physical contact if I ever had to turn my head. My husband I have to say was constantly reminded, even as he reminded me he could hear. I reminded him, so could my Mom.

It was while we were homeless and among more unstable folks, that we became much more paranoid about whom and where our children were. So missing children are something that while my kids are no longer young children, it is something that still draws fervent prayers from me. I am aware that most of those taken are Custody disputes. There is one Missing Child however I have chosen to keep on top of until some kind of conclusion is decisively made. There is little I can do, except pray, and maybe because I live around here, keep my eyes and ears open. Doubt I will ever come across anything, but then, I won’t discount that either. I can at least keep the child before the Lord. It was August 10, 2009 that he was last seen. A child with cerebral palsy , Hasanni Campbell.

Missing Child
Hasanni Campbell, age 6 in 2009 age 5 or 6, his age has been reported as both. So he would be 8 or 9 now, if alive. This too is a form of Social Justice on a local scale. A local missing child. It seems his family life was badly fragmented, and being a little boy with disabled issues meant he got the shorter end of the stick than most. I have no doubt he was seen as a drain and 'nothing but trouble' by some. It might not have been spoken out loud, but that is the sense that many folks feel when there is someone disabled in the family. It is the huge elephant in the room or yard whenever people get together. Trust me, us disabled folks get squeezed all the time by that elephant. I finally decided to start riding that Elephant instead of standing in its, you know... 'shadow'.

So here is my challenge to you, pick ONE child from your area that is missing. Keep a page, photo, name and date of missing and pin it up where you look everyday. Say a prayer, check for updates. Even if its years down the road. If the child is found, give praise, but don’t think it is all over, keep the child in your prayers, because trust me, the kid gonna need it. That child will always be disabled, we just can’t see the wound. Just ‘adopt’ that child for your prayer, for life. Its a small thing to ask, but it is a ripple that spans out farther than you can know. If the child remains missing, don’t give up, because the family still aches and has no closure. Can you commit this for Christ?

I put my hand in yours in prayer.

Nancy Louise

Zero Emission or a Mission of Impossibility?


San Francisco sits on land of enviable climate and gorgeous views. We are a world class city that people clamor to live here. In a city where there are more dogs than children, people who live here cry out for the need to diversify the population. Many of the population is older retirees or younger single, or young parents with one child. I remember clearly when my husband and I had our second child, we needed a two bedroom and there was no way we could afford one, even as a middle class working family. So we had, with much grief moved out of the area. Four years later we returned having miss greatly our support system, parish, and a way of life we dearly loved in the city. Fortunately for us, Treasure Island opened up and had more affordable two, three, and four bedroom homes on the Island available and we could live there. We have been here for almost twelve years now.

Not everyone is so fortunate as we are. By 2020 San Francisco has a goal as a city to produce zero emissions. What that means is no air pollution from buses, cars, or industry. No garbage to the landfill, zero toxic products being used in government buildings and business in San Francisco (and hopefully by volunteers). All this while at the same time, being able to increase affordable housing for families. While thinking about this, I suddenly had a vision that went something like this.

The Bay Bridge and Golden Gate Bridge had only One lane each open for emergency vehicles and Prior approved delivery trucks which were driven electronically. The rest of the bridges had been turned over to bike riders and walkers who commuted by foot or bike to work or visiting the city or east bay. Personal vehicles were no longer used in the city of San Francisco, not even for politicians. Restaurants abounded everywhere as most people no longer cooked at home and ate out for all their meals. All buildings had businesses on the ground floor and upper floors were for housing. Historical buildings were preserved, but new buildings had been built all over the south part of the city in the old Navel Yard that included several miles of elevated walk paths. San Francisco by 2040 became known not only as a zero emission city, it also was known as the healthiest city.

So was this a vision of thing to come? Humm more like of things that COULD be done. It would take a lot of power and of course $$. Some I know would ask me, hey what about those who are disabled that can’t use public transit for what ever reason? Being one of those people, I often wondered about that myself. While there were no personal vehicles in the vision that did not mean there were no cars (although they did not look like the gas guzzlers we have now). My guess is people would put in orders for rides and be picked up. Granted it would grate teeth to wait. Trade off is that many things were now being delivered to the house, so shopping was not done by carrying packages home anymore, but secured delivery. People ate out or did take out, so groceries were pretty much a thing of the past. Yes the food was locally grown and in fact many people grew their own and contributed to local kitchens where they ate. If you did have a hankering to cook, there were facilities. All of this was done to conserve energy. By keeping the number of where food was stored in smaller areas, the amount of energy needed for refrigerators was cut down drastically. Eating out became a lot more affordable because people did it so much and unemployment was less than 1% which was primarily those who are severely disabled.

So, what do YOU think?

Nancy Louise

East side of island
Dawn on the East side of Treasure Island looking out to the Bay Bridge and towards Hayward.What can I say, I live here, see why?Hard side of the city.