Tuesday, August 18, 2015

Not Even All That Late Night Maunderings

You know I started a really long rant about how just believing in God doesn't necessarily mean anything but I'm not feeling it anymore so I deleted it.

My point, I think, was that it's not just enough to believe in God or gods or what have you. You can have an incredibly passive kind of faith in that way. After all, I believe in God but does that inform my life in any way?

I can tell you that at this point it really doesn't. It's not even as though it's an elephant in the room or something that I worry about very much. I know that I'm a better person when I believe, when I follow a religious path in my life. General *waves hands* belief doesn't do it for me in the long run. I actually forget about it and treat religion like an interesting though experiment. But it doesn't make me want to be better, for all it's inherent fascination when you're picking theology apart.

So for me, agnosticism (though what I've described really isn't agnosticism after all) doesn't really work. It leaves me *wanting*. I know that many people can live quite happily like this or without any faith at all and more power to them, right? But I need the framework of a religion in order to feel *correct*, I guess.

Then again, that brings me back to the always present issue....which one?

So far I've wavered mostly between Christianity and Islam. But neither feel right in the way I need them to in order to make a choice. Why not just choose the one that seems almost right? Well, but I did that when I converted to Catholicism and we see that I just eventually fell out again because I couldn't make it stick, mentally. I've no desire to do that again. And maybe I should take the 'feel' of things out of the equation, but what else are you supposed to go on when nothing seems factually more likely than anything else?

Arguments can be made for and against pretty much everything. When you choose a religion there must inherently be that leap of faith. Ha ha, see what I did there? LOL Okay it wasn't *that* punny. :P

Still, that leap has to be based on something, right? A feeling or the certain knowledge that what you're leaping to is correct. Lacking the knowledge of 'correctness' and the feeling of rightness, what am I supposed to do?

Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Who Do You Think You Are?

Every so often I get an urge to really get into my genealogy. My great-grandfather did a family tree (back before you could do such things on the internet) and my grandmother and now my mother became the keepers of it. So I even have a pretty good place to start.

Well the bug has bitten again, only this time I mean to do something about it. I joined Ancestry.com and they have this thing which I think is pretty neat where you can get your DNA tested and they'll tell you the genetic background of your family. As in, you're 50% Scottish, 10% German, 5% Native American, etc. etc.

I bought the kit for this, so now I'm just waiting for it to show up in the mail so I can spit in a tube and learn my past! Admittedly, on my mothers side there's not much mystery. We're German. So German. Much German. And some Czech. Maybe some Polish. But mostly German. So sayeth the Family Tree! And my grandmother, when she was alive, bless her So Very German soul.

But my father, for obvious reasons, is a mystery. I was always told his family was Scottish but his last name actually has an Irish...flavor to it, I guess? And honestly, who knows? Not me.

I'm actually kind of excited to find out where my genes come from, in broad strokes. And I'm working on the genealogy itself, as I get time. This coming weekend I'm going to dig out all the boxes of family stuff my mother has and lay claim to it for a while. The site is really interesting, even just knowing the couple of things I know off the top of my head I've found censuses from when my Grandmother was growing up and from my great-grandfather's childhood too. And they have a picture of my great-grandparents' headstone up in Ohio which I found pretty neat.

I'm not telling my mother about the DNA testing though. Couldn't tell you why, but I feel like I want to keep that private (as she posts about it on the internet for all and sundry to see). It'll be a couple of months anyway, between waiting to get the kit and then waiting for the results, but there you go. Aside from goggling at the idiotic kinds of books that get published and the people we have running for president, that's my new hobby.
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