Friday
Nov082013

"If There Is No God"

This came to me this morning. It is along the same vein as C.Lewis' "The Screwtape Letters" (though not half as well written). Much of it is meant tongue in cheek and should be read as such.

If there is no God (and I say this merely for the sake of this paper since God is as real to me as my children), if we are "accidents" of time created not with purpose, but rather evolved as a byproduct of the collision of certain forces of nature (the universe's refuse if you will) then there is no point to humankind. We are merely consumers of other accidental byproducts of nature (which happen, by chance, to provide the exact nutrients the human body needs thank God who doesn't exist anyway) and the whole majestic, magnificently balanced universe exists for no reason except to advance forward in time until the whole thing is destroyed by the next great accidental collision. If humankind exists without purpose and our existence is limited to our brief inhabitation of this fleshy vessel, then I submit to you that a person's greatest ambition must be to achieve maximum happiness (which we shall refer to as "self-gratification" for the purpose of this discourse) and our every effort should be to attain that goal. In short, every individual should "grab all they can while they can and as much as they can."

Let us toss aside conscience (or at least ignore it mightily) and every other obstacle that might hinder us in the pursuit of this chief aim! Anything and anyone that does not add to our happiness is folly and a waste of our finite time in this current fortuitous epoch of clashing matter that erupted into existence by some unknown hocus pocus. I apologize, "hocus pocus" connotes the existence of some invisible (or other realmed) magician, suffice it to say that at some point in the past history of the visible universe there was nothing and then matter suddenly, inexplicably appeared. Now, back to the main point of my one-sided discussion.

Babies have already achieved the highest end of accidental man, they exist in a perpetual state of desiring instant and complete self-gratification, no matter the detriment to others around them. As a matter of fact, it seems that we must become better at imitating them in order to achieve maximum self-gratification for ourselves. But since they are already the pinnacle of man (in a world where honor, achievement, purpose and charity only exist where they might benefit the individual's gratification who deigns to exhibit such traits) we shall leave them and move on to that stage in development in which we transition from babe to self-aware individual. The moment we are aware of ourselves and our limited time in this precarious place, we should begin to pursue self-gratification.

For those who are able, they should lie, cheat and steal with impunity and avoid detection at all costs for this is the quickest way to obtain the desired effect of instant gratification. Please don't live as if someone if keeping track of our deeds; it's important to force such archaic limitations from our thoughts. The acquisition of your chief desires may indeed inhibit another's desire, but their needs are of no consequence unless they aid in furthering your own gratification. If you are able to infringe on another's self-gratification while increasing your own, then by all means, do so! Perhaps carry a picture of an infant around to remind you of the goal of your endeavors. But for those of us unable to master the evolutionary stricture called conscience or who simply lack the innate ability to employ these abilities in a way that benefits ourselves, we should look to our employments, relationships, hobbies and inborn desires to achieve our aim.

Unfortunately, it is still too often the case that one must work in order to eat. And since eating leads to gratification, it is vital that we discover a way to acquire food, shelter and the other necessities of existence. For those of us for whom lying, cheating and stealing is detrimental, we must either find a way to be supported by another or a government agency, or we must find gainful employment-preferably employment that achieves maximum gratification. It is important to remember that, as an accident of the collision of forces, no allegiance is owed, so please choose an employment unencumbered by any limiting moral responsibility. The most we can hope for in our limited timeframe is gratification, therefore it is not necessary that the employment benefit anyone or anything else as long as it is paying a living wage. We do not need to "save the world" (or the children for that matter) unless doing so will deposit more gratification currency in the universal bank of me, myself and I. Consider the picture of the infant; life is all about you.

Without an almighty presence violating the prime directive of self-gratification at any cost, we must reconsider the way we approach our relationships. If you are able to maintain a relationship with anyone or anything that is immensely gratifying to you even if it causes the other party distress, then you are well on your way to devolving into that infantile creature from whence you sprang. There is no divine purpose behind a relationship; they exist solely to further our ambitions. It is necessary to continually weigh any relationship on the balance of pleasure or pain. If a relationship causes any amount of pain or consternation, flee from it. If a relationship is pleasurable, remain in it-but keep an eye out, the moment that pleasure runs out it is necessary to run out along with it. Relationships are made simple when one has a clear world view of things unhindered by any constraint but the god of self.

And it goes without saying that our hobbies are our own and an area in which we can continually focus on our need for gratification. The only law (and I apologize for using a word that may or may not be laden with judgment for some) for the desirable life of an evolved being is the consideration of whether or not the hobby brings pleasure. A hobby is immensely desirable since it can be undertaken without the need for dreadful interactions which can limit personal enjoyment and therefore, in the privacy of shelter, one is free to enjoy whichever hobby ones whims, desires or caprices dictate. But I'm preaching to the choir aren't I? Our hobbies and darker pleasures are an area in which we excel the best at heeding the  infantile whimsy of self-gratification. Well done, there is no need to speak on it further.

As the pleasure is waning in my continuing with this discourse, it is time to leave off with a few final comments. If carried out to its logical conclusion, the idea of humankind existing as a result of a biological accident which occurred many millennium ago strips our lives of both context and meaning. How we view God, the universe and our world at large directly effects the lives lead and the impact we have along the way. And many will agree with me that the idea of self-gratification being the chief objective of our existence is a juvenile intention reserved for infants. The compelling question is why we feel that way. If there is no God, no purpose, no greater import for our actions or inactions then we may as well "eat and drink, for tomorrow we die."

 Think about it.

 

Tuesday
Oct012013

Thursday
Aug152013

Omaha author to donate portion of sales fromupcoming novel to local organization

Chaka Heinze creates partnership with Abide Network, a nonprofit organization

 
Under A Withering Sun By Chaka Heinze
Under A Withering Sun By Chaka Heinze
PRLog (Press Release) - Aug. 1, 2013 - OMAHA, Neb. -- OMAHA, Neb. – Local author Chaka Heinze announced July 23, 2013, she will donate a portion of the sales from her upcoming novel, Under A Withering Sun, to Abide Network, a 501 (c) 3 nonprofit organization on a mission to end the inner city in Omaha.

“I knew from the beginning that I wanted to use this book to further God's purposes,” Heinze said. “I am excited to have the opportunity to benefit the Abide Network and their mission to transform north Omaha neighborhood by neighborhood. I love that they aren't about handouts, but rather about creating community.”

The nonprofit organization, begun by Ron and Twany Dotzler in 1989, strives to involve caring people in the lives of children, youth, and families in under resourced areas. To reach this goal, Abide Network has been actively involved with civic, community, corporate and religious organizations and their leaders to build relationships and strengthen the community.

The staff of Abide Network reside and work within the urban community and have experienced firsthand the complex issues and problems that exist. According to the organization’s website, Abide “is a dynamic multi-ethnic movement of caring people committed to the transformation of hopelessness in our city. Since 1989, Abide Network has supported and/or developed more than 120 emerging leaders, 68 brand new community programs and outreaches as well as mobilizing more than 23,000 volunteers to serve in the community. These leaders, outreaches and volunteers are impacting more than 2,200 children, youth and families on an annual basis.

“Abide Network exists by the grace of God to meet the needs in the inner city of Omaha and is funded by donations from various individuals, corporations and churches," said director Ron Dotzler. "We want to thank Chaka Heinze for generously donating the money raised from her book, Under A Withering Sun, to further our work in the inner city of Omaha."

Slated for release on Aug. 26, Under A Withering Sun ($14.95 USD) is the first full-length novel released by the Omaha native. The young adult fiction novel tells the story of Regina Leeman, an emotionally troubled college student who volunteers as a creative writing teacher at an urban recreational center. The epistolary novel is published through Athanatos Publishing Group.

Heinze said volunteers similar to Leeman are the prototypical people who make Abide Network stand out in the community.

“When I first began writing this book, I had no idea at the direction it would take. One of the central directives of Jesus is that we help one another when we can and where we can. The quest of Regina Leeman, the protagonist in my story, to volunteer in the inner city reflects God's dual purpose to transform both the individual and the greater community at large. The Abide Network has put Jesus' directive into action and is actively participating in the transformation of Omaha,” Heinze said.

Interested in volunteering time or donating to Abide Network? Visit www.abidenetwork.org. To learn more about the author and her upcoming release, visit her website at http://www.chakaheinze.com or http://www.awitheringsun.com

Photo:
http://www.prlog.org/12185797/1
Tuesday
Sep252012

Author Shows Spiritual Winter Turn to Summer in Story Set in Inner City

Athanatos Christian Ministries announces the release of Under a Withering Sun, a novel by Chaka Heinze. "Under a Withering Sun" is the debut novel of Chaka Heinze. The novel is expected to be released during the summer of 2013.

 
Quote startThe emotion in the book is authentic, not contrived. The main characters read like real people and the setting feels like a real place.Quote end

Omaha, NE (PRWEB) September 22, 2012

Athanatos Christian Ministries announced the summer 2013 release of "Under a Withering Sun", the debut novel of Chaka Heinze. The novel, an inspirational romance, is the first of its genre published by ACM, where one of their focuses is on "literary apologetics."

"Chaka's book is one of a kind." Director Anthony Horvath expounds, "The emotion in the book is authentic, not contrived. The main characters read like real people and the setting feels like a real place. I never thought I'd see ACM publish a work like this, but I think after you read it, you'll see why we did, and how it fits into our vision for "literary apologetics."

"Under a Withering Sun" transports its readers into the life of Regina Leeman, a young college student struggling through the emotional turmoil of an incredible tragedy. Regina arrives one summer with journal in had to record her life as she volunteers to teach a creative writing class at an urban recreational center. Overcome by grief at her recent losses, angry at a God whom she feels has abandoned her, and outrunning another nervous breakdown, Regina sets out to bring meaning to an existence she finds increasingly intolerable. Her attempts to glean meaning while staying emotionally aloof from those around her are thwarted when she meets an attractive basketball star named Damion, who, intrigued and enchanted, relentlessly pursues her.

Heinze adds, "'Under a Withering Sun' is an inspirational love story poignantly narrated by Regina as she struggles to function while in the grip of great sorrow, little realizing how the very ones she seeks to keep at arm's length will give her the strength to face her family, her failures and her faith as she finds the will to live again."

Horvath says he like many readers are skeptical about stories set in journal form, but "Withering Sun" shows it can be done compellingly. "Almost despite myself, after just a few pages, I really wanted to know what was going to happen to Regina. Readers who might otherwise turn their backs on this format really should give Chaka's book a chance."

Always a writer at heart, Chaka Heinze dabbled in poetry and storytelling from an early age. While attending the University of Nebraska, she penned a column for the college newspaper and was recognized for her Short Story writing abilities in a contest sponsored by the University. The past several years have both challenged Heinze’s faith, and forced her into deeper communion with God as she and her husband struggled with the health of their youngest son.

Her book, "Under a Withering Sun", is a story which encapsulates the heartache of suffering commonly experienced in the fallen world we all share, and the triumph of how a God, intimately familiar with our circumstances, often works in the background of our everyday experiences to both glorify himself, and to draw people everywhere into a more meaningful relationship with him.

Chaka Heinze resides in Nebraska with her husband, four children and a crazed terrier named Kenya. After receiving her JD from the University of Nebraska College of Law, she imagined partnering with a friend to launch their own firm, but God intervened, and instead Heinze has spent the past thirteen years at home caring for her children and has never regretted the decision. Her law degree still proves useful whenever she is forced to arbitrate disputes between her kids.

Heinze understands that one of ACM's publishing goals is not to "club people over the head with religion" which was also the perspective of one of her favorite authors and theologians, C.S. Lewis. "The mission of Athanatos Christian Ministries (ACM) commitment to promote 'Christian thought in a variety of contexts, including through the publishing of books,' is the same sort of methodology employed by Lewis, and it both encourages me as I join with them for the grand endeavor of glorifying God through the use of the written word, and it excites me to work alongside Anthony Horvath and his team as they challenge themselves to creatively advance Christ’s mission of seeking and saving the lost."

To learn more about the author, visit her webiste, http://www.chakaheinze.com, where she invites you to share in meaningful snapshots of her life. Chaka Heinze is available for interviews and can be contacted through the publisher.

Other titles that Athanatos Ministries publishes include the award winning title "Diamonds in the Dust" by Shirley Mowat Tucker and upcoming releases "The Devil's Choir" by Chris Morrow and "Life Unworthy of Life" by Derek Elkins. ACM's entire catalog is online.

Contact

To read the full article: http://www.prweb.com/releases/chakaheinze/witheringsun/prweb9933384.htm

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