Blood Moon and Passover

Posted: April 17, 2014 in History

Blood Moon

With the blood moon all over the news (nothing makes headlines like the end of the world) I got a little curious as to just what all the fuss was about. I’ve seen plenty of lunar and solar eclipses and the fact that we’re having four in the next 24 months is hardly worth losing sleep over. It’s not like it never happened before. So I began asking around and sure enough a friend of mine was buying into it and shared her thoughts and even invited me to join in on a ritual to protect us in these end of days.

First, let’s take a look at what is actually happening, documentable events. There will be two total lunar eclipses, one on April 15 and another on October 8th. There will be two solar eclipses this year, on April 29th and October 23rd. The first lunar eclipse will be visible from North & South America. It will not be apparent to anyone in the Middle East. If you want a good seat for the annular solar eclipse in April, you’ll have to travel to Antarctica to see it, parts of Australia will get a glimpse of it. The total lunar eclipse of October will be visible in the Pacific Ocean and along the coastal areas. The partial solar eclipse of October will only be visible to North America. So as far as any Luddites sitting in Israel or other Middle Eastern countries, there will be no heavenly events to observe. They will have to rely on second hand modern communications to even know that they occurred. Not exactly the best way to send a sign to the people of Israel, at least it’s not how I would do it.

In 2015 there is a total solar eclipse on March 20th and a partial solar eclipse on September 13th, and there will be a total lunar eclipse on April 4th and September 28th. Only the very last lunar eclipse will be easily viewable by anyone in the Middle East.

So as I understand it, a tetrad is a set of four consecutive total lunar eclipses and these occur at approximately six month intervals. There will be nine sets of tetrads in our current century. There were none from 1600-1900, so it is not a regular recurring event in the human life span.

So, what’s all the fuss? The lunar eclipses all fall on Jewish holidays, April 15, Oct. 8, April 4, Sept. 28. Mark Blitz in his book, “Blood Moons: Decoding the Imminent Heavenly Signs” says with prophetic certainly that this is no coincidence and that something significant will happen soon. Not a very specific prediction, but one that I can agree with, something significant will probably happen somewhere in the world over the next two years and even if nothing significant does happen we can count on the press to sensationalize it.

Evangelical pastor John Hagee picked up the baton from Blitz and wrote his own book with his own predictions. “The only reason that Iran will not acquire a nuclear bomb will be that Israel chooses a military solution to that crisis,” Hagee told CBN News.

 

“I believe that if that happens, it will start a series of events that will change the course of world history,” he said. “If Israel does not, then it will still change the course of world history.”

Blitz holds nights to honor Israel in churches across America to insure that we are on the winning side in this battle between good and evil.

Which leads me back to my Christian friend and her invitation to honor Israel with a traditional Jewish Passover Seder. Her church was broadcasting the ritual over the internet and we all sat around the table with an iPad at one end and symbolic foods like horse radish and matzah in the middle. My friend doesn’t partake in alcohol, so we had grape juice instead of wine and there were other substitutions as well, but it’s the symbolism not the actual recipes that matter in the Passover Seder, my friend explained.

I won’t go through the entire ritual, but in a nutshell it was a ritual to symbolize the Jews slavery and freedom from Egypt. Each act in the ritual was intended to remind the participants of some aspect of the story.

It makes sense to use a rigid unchanging ritual as a way to pass down a people’s history from generation to generation. The ritual helps preserve the original story and prevent changes or loss of information in a world before reading and writing were common. The religious rituals served a purpose.

But I was struck by the contrast of an ancient ritual and a modern device that held access to more historical information than any one person could ever hope to acquire. In the center of the table there sat symbolic food meant to convey a story to illiterate people and at the end of the table was an electronic device transmitting the video of the story teller, and the device itself could provide a greater volume of data with a greater accuracy than the story teller, who erroneously attributed the famous painting of the last supper to Rembrandt instead of Leonardo da Vinci.

Why are we still clinging to these ancient rituals? They served their purpose in times past, but they are no longer needed any more than a village cobbler. And yet, we hang onto them and decorate them with a reverence far out of proportion to any benefit that they provide. In fact, it is our unquestioning faith in leaders of ritual and ceremony, keepers of ancient knowledge, that makes us so vulnerable to predictions of doom and blinds so many people to the proven reality of our world.

The stark contrast between the scientific prediction that an eclipse would occur on April 15th and another on October 8th, and the vague prediction of Pastor John Hagee, “we’re going to see something dramatic happen in the Middle East,” kept occupying my mind as my friend tried to explain to me what was going to happen and how we needed to prepare and protect ourselves through this Passover ritual.

I politely took part in the Seder, and kept my skepticism to myself. I knew I would never change her mind or her beliefs. But the experience for me, was not the same as she had hoped for. I left, wondering how anyone could be so wrapped up in meaningless predictions and how can we as a people possible hope to move forward as long as these anachronistic rituals continue to provide a foundation for those that seek to profit from fear and faith.

 

 

 

Posted: March 16, 2014 in Uncategorized

selfieSelfie-the hard way

Walking Dead

Posted: March 11, 2014 in action, post apocalyptic
Tags: , ,

walking dead tv

Lately I’ve gotten to be a big Walking Dead fan. How big? Well, after my daughter introduced me to the series by sharing the first episode of season 1 with me, I began watching all the season 1 episodes. Then I began watching Season 2. I was hooked and wanted to start watching the new shows, so I did a Walking Dead marathon and watched all of the old shows-season 3 and season 4-to prevent the new episodes from spoiling the story line of the past episodes. Now I anxiously await each new episode on Sunday nights, just like the other fans.

What makes the series so intriguing? The excellent story lines that depict the interpersonal relationships between a mixed group of people in an extraordinary environment. Each character has a back story, but we have to wait to find out just what it is, which leads to a sense of mystery. There is a clearly defined goal in each of their lives-survival. There are different ways to achieve that goal, but they often come at a cost, either a moral cost or a personal cost. This creates an endless variety of dilemmas for the characters to overcome and leaves the audience imagining what they would do in such a situation. We find ourselves relating to characters that demonstrate our own values.

The other element of the show that creates a sense of intrigue is the constant loss of main characters. There is never any assurance that any one character will survive to the next week. Unlike many series that have come before, there is no group of central characters that are essential in carrying the series. Even the actors don’t know if their characters will survive from one episode to the next.

The Walking Dead embodies all the great traits of a zombie classic along with great character portrayal and excellent story telling.

Tumbler image

DNA Photograph

Posted: March 9, 2014 in Uncategorized

DNA photographed

This is a photograph of the DNA molecule, revealing its structure. When James Watson and Francis Crick first deduced its shape, based on theory, intuition, and x-ray diffraction, they could only dream of the day that such imagery would be possible. Science has advanced by incredible leaps since their 1953 paper.

Enzo di Fabrizio, of the University of Genoa, Italy developed the technique, which actually pulls a cord of DNA composed of seven strands between two silicone pillars. It may soon be possible to refine the technique and actually image DNA at the level of single bases.

Its getting hard for science fiction to stay ahead of science fact.

The BLACK OPS wallet protects against RFID skimming, which is becoming a bigger threat as more and more credit/bank cards and driver’s licenses incorporate an RFID chip. By 2015 all credit/bank cards may have this technology embedded in them.

The BLACK OPS wallet is designed to fit in any pocket, even your shirt pocket. Its minimalist design is lightweight and sturdy.

It’s available now for a limited time on Kickstarter, at below its retail price.

(in a pinch its even good for bashing zombies) Don’t forget to share on Facebook and Twitter

THE BLACK OPS WALLET

Bring it on Life

Image  —  Posted: February 9, 2014 in Humor
Tags: , ,

Who is Chuck Norris and why his endorsement for a wallet?

Chuck Norris is not just a name, it is a synonym for TOUGH. Browse around on the web and you will encounter numerous “Chuck Norris Facts,” such as…

The quickest way to a man’s heart is Chuck Norris’ fist

Chuck Norris has a grizzly bear rug in his den. The bear isn’t dead, it’s just afraid to move.

There used to be a street named Chuck Norris, but it was changed because nobody crosses Chuck Norris and lives.

Chuck Norris

So who is Chuck Norris? He’s the guy that fought Bruce Lee in Return of the Dragon, and  David Caradine in Lone Wolf McQuade. That’s enough to be defined as, tough as nails, in anyone’s movie book. In real life he won the Professional Middleweight Karate championship not once, but for six consecutive years. He was also the first Westerner to earn the rank of 8th Degree Black Belt Grand Master (Russia’s president, Vladimir Putin, was recently awarded an honorary 9th Degree Black Belt and the press made a big deal about it. But Chuck Norris’ black belt was not honorary).  So, yes, he has the skill to back up his tough guy movie persona. You’d have to be crazy to pick a fight with Chuck Norris.

Chuck Norris was born in 1940 in Ryan, Oklahoma and now lives on a ranch in Texas. He is an Air Force veteran and true patriot. He has made over 35 films and was the star of Walker, Texas Ranger. The TV show proved to be popular and ran for over 8 years with 203 episodes. It is the most successful Saturday night series on CBS since Gunsmoke.

So when it comes to synonyms for tough, Chuck Norris can’t be beat. It is exactly how I want to describe my Black Ops metal wallet product-Chuck Norris tough.

Update on meeting Chuck Norris-I’ve written to Chuck Norris through his website and column on WorldNetDaily.com, as yet, no response. I’ve also begun asking relatives and friends if they know Chuck Norris or anyone that does. I hear his house in Dallas is up for sale, if anyone is interested.

Black Ops Wallet

Chuck Norris

from Chuck Norris’ website

I recently launched a Kickstarter project for an RFID blocking wallet. It is a rugged, minimal design, lightweight, and unobtrusive. I wanted it to be durable and be a wallet that would last for years, if not forever. The design incorporated three 16 gauge aircraft grade aluminum plates, anodized to harden the surface and prevent scratches.

black ops wallet

But simply having a good product is not a guarantee of success. Getting the word out to people in today’s world of electronic communications, where everyone is hit with an avalanche of messages and advertisements, is a difficult task. I knew I wanted to send a message that would get attention and also reflect the properties of the wallet which I wished to convey, toughness, durability, versatility.

I decided that I needed an endorsement. The name I had chosen for the wallet, THE BLACK OPS WALLET, was meant to convey toughness, stealth, and a “get the job done” attitude. I needed an endorsement from a special forces veteran or someone associated with special forces. After a lot of thought I boiled it down to one question: whose name is synonymous with tough?

The answer was obvious: Chuck Norris. When I think of tough guys, Chuck Norris is at the top of the list. I needed to get Chuck Norris to endorse my product. I needed to meet Chuck Norris, to talk to him and to give him one of my wallets for his own personal use. Besides, just meeting Chuck Norris would be a blast regardless of whether he agreed to endorse my Black Ops wallet or not.

So this is my quest, to meet Chuck Norris, present him with one of my wallets and to get his endorsement on my Kickstarter project. I will be posting my adventure of tracking down Chuck and meeting the toughest man on the planet. I have two advantages going for me, I live in the same state, Texas, and I am very resourceful. Did I mention that I’m also a big fan of his movies?

Chuck Norris joke:

At night ghosts sit around campfires and tell Chuck Norris stories

Tired of thieves stealing your credit card information? Well it’s only going to get worse in the future.

 all 3 chr

The major banks and credit card companies are transitioning to cards with an RFID chip instead of a magnetic strip. It makes it easier and faster for merchants to conduct transactions and it supposedly makes it harder for thieves to make fake credit cards. But is it really safer for the bank/credit card owner?

Consumer Reports did a test to see just how secure those new encrypted RFID equipped credit cards really are.

They hired hacker Chris Paget to use an RFID reader purchased off the internet for $100 to capture credit card information, without ever touching the credit card. The reader could skim the information off the credit cards from a few inches away, through a leather wallet, clothing, purses, or mail envelopes. The RFID reader could easily be carried in a brief case or laptop carrier, concealing it from the victim’s view.

Chris Paget then transferred the skimmed card data onto a blank magnetic-stripe card to produce a counterfeit card. The fake card was then used to successfully make a purchase.

“If I put the reader next to a turnstile at Grand Central Terminal at rush hour, I could probably capture data from 5,000 cards in an evening,” said Mark Rasch, a former Justice Department computer-crime prosecutor.

Around 200 million bank/credit cards have RFID chips in them now. Many states have embedded them in driver’s licenses as well as parts of Canada. The RFID chip in credit cards is expected to be the standard by 2015.

I have been the victim of credit card fraud in the past, and my wife was one of the 120 million people that had their credit card information stolen through a breach in Target’s security. Some of my cards have the RFID chip and I decided to do something about it for myself. I designed and machined an aluminum wallet for my cards that is lightweight, totally secure, and very functional. It is my daily carry. I am offering it on Kickstarter to anyone that would like the peace of mind to know that their financial information is safe from RFID skimmers, and I think it looks great as well.

For more information, check out: The Black Ops Wallet