Some Follow-Up On What I’ve Been On About

In the comments of my response to Free Northerner there were a couple comments that I want to highlight. First, from MycroftJones:

Steven, I think he laid out his terms and conditions clearly enough. If you want someone to teach you, then treat him with respect. If you want to be a student, act like one. Not like a spoiled child demanding a toy from a stranger.

This is it; the main reason I wrote the post. It’s a counterpoint to my post on on the lack of respect older men show to the following generations; whether through current commentary, the obliteration of incentive for marriage, or by the acceptance and promotion of anti-Christian behavior in pop culture by Christians going back several generations.[1] This lack of respect and gratitude all around is part of the lack of love–and of the most basic sort. I give freely, and it is thrown in my face.

Peoplegrowing wrote:

I agree with those who have pointed out that art nevertheless has technique (which is not the same as a system). Technique is imminently teachable, but technique becomes art in the hands of those with natural talent, or lots of practice. For example, anyone can learn to draw, but only those willing to put in the time, or with the proper natural instinct, become masters. Nevertheless, everyone can benefit from a few lessons, and a little technique is all most people ever need to accomplish their basic goals.

This is a good point, and one that Hawaiian Libertarian expands upon, but it’s a rebuttal of something that I did not say. In fact, I have written techniques on this very site. Yet because I don’t endorse Game or a system, fans of Game either can’t recognize them as techniques, or they bluster that what I’ve said is actually Game even though the source was entirely different, and in fact predates Game by thousands of years. Such co-option cannot be combated with rational debate because the foundational assumptions are completely different, i.e., we have wildly different philosophies…different religions.

My assumption is that the Bible is true, and so if I see something in Game that echoes something found in the Bible I say, “That bit of Bible you got there is good stuff.” If you retort that this proves Game is true, then you’ve gone too far. If you go even further and say that the Bible is all right because it has some of this good Game stuff in it, you’re sold out on idolatry. The latter is my experience with fans of Game.

I don’t think they set out towards idolatry; I think that fans of Game tend to be lovers of systems who want to compile and codify information, and that they are seduced into thinking they can make straight what God has made crooked. It’s no coincidence that Game theory is so cross-pollinated with diet fads, evolution, HBD, conspiracy theories, natural law, scientism, and all these other systems of thought that claim to have figured out how things work; that they know what’s really going on. I think there is some truth to be learned in all those things, but they have to be tested against the Bible.

Here’s less serious example: As far as I can recall, the Bible has nothing but good things to say about wheat and bread; particularly unleavened bread. Any diet that tries to tell me that wheat bread is bad for me is a non-starter. That doesn’t mean that I approve of Monsanto, or that one can’t eat too much bread.

While the basic problem seems–from a systematic view–to be that there’s a lot of bad info out there, Christ teaches that the problem is one of the desires of our hearts, and that the heart is fixed not by the perfect transmission of perfect information, but only by the Holy Spirit. How this happens is–in very simple terms–by choosing to have gratitude for Christ’s sacrifice for us, that kick-starts a process[2] by which God changes our hearts. In turn, this change in our hearts will be reflected in our lives, i.e., bear fruit.

22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, 23 meekness, temperance: against such there is no law. 24 And they that are Christ’s have crucified the flesh with the affections and lusts. 25 If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit. 26 Let us not be desirous of vain glory, provoking one another, envying one another.

Things are the way they are not because we’ve been given bad information, but rather we’ve given each other bad information because of the way we are. And if a man’s contentment (love, joy, and peace) is predicated on the obtainment of a wife then he’s not walking in the Spirit but in the flesh, and he is in fact a slave to women and the flesh, and of cunningly devised fables and oppositions of so-called science.

[1] Again: Not specifically a recrimination of Zippy; of whom I am indebted. His comments were a jumping off point.

[2] Here we can get into deep denominational discussions about the ways and means God goes about this, but the Merely Christian fact is that this is what happens.

10 thoughts on “Some Follow-Up On What I’ve Been On About

  1. Both my father and I have managed to lose weight on Atkins/Paleo diets. Bread is a good source of cheap nutrition, but in the overabundance of the west, it has become easy to fall into gluttony (myself definitely included), and Atkins/Paleo, like Game, seems to be a cure to some of the symptoms of modern diseases. My father is strong in his Christian (Protestant) faith to the point that he rejects most Christmas festivities, and I lean the same way, but despite growing up in that environment, fasting is something I didn’t hear about as part of the Christian community until I was 20.

  2. Regarding bread, I’ve been reading Wheat Belly. Even the author acknowledges he doesn’t get the bad reactions from untampered with wheat that he gets from modern wheat.

    Modern wheat (dwarf wheat) has only existed for 50 years, but it is 99% of the world’s wheat production.

    The BIble says do not mingle seed, or breed diverse kinds. It is talking DIRECTLY about hybridizing plants and animals. The “Green Revolution” and other sinners violated that command. We participate by buying their malnourished wheat. The consequence: wheat belly, diabetes, and many other ailments.

    The second change to bread happened 100 years ago. Pasteur isolated yeast from sourdough culture. Sourdough culture contains many symbiotic organisms that process grain in many unique ways into a healthy product.

    Yeast, only processes gluten. So, with yeast, you need higher gluten content.

    The Bible isn’t wrong about wheat/bread. They are a blessing. What is wrong is the hybrid varieties of wheat that were bred in violation of God’s Law. Note, unleavened bread was only to be eaten for 1 week out of the year. Sourdough is the proper way to process wheat into bread. Without sourdough, you CANNOT make 100% Rye bread. Rye doesn’t have enough gluten for yeast alone.

    This all happened before, as in the days of Noah, when the Watchers corrupted the seed of man, but also corrupted “all flesh”, all animal and plant varieties.

    The book “Wheat Belly” tries to “explain” things with evo-psych. It is much easier just to take the Bible’s explanation: don’t hybridize things!

  3. And I’d like to take this opportunity to express appreciation for the part of your last post where you explained how to identify what a nerd, and how to reign in one’s nerdy impulses. Noone ever outlined it clearly like that in an actionable way.

  4. Mycroft, you stole my words about wheat.

    Actually, Cane, the Bible had some brilliant things to say about diet regarding macronutrient balance. Specifically, after the flood, man was given permission to eat animals, and as a result, the fear of man was put into them. This seems to be because post flood conditions were such that physical degeneration increased and mutations resulting in an inability to process nutrients increased as well. See the declining life spans in the descendents of Shem. And thus for groups that live in on the fringes as Hunter-Gatherers, mutations making for lactose intolerance or gluten sensitivity world be used on because they don’t effect Hunter-Gatherers negatively.

    I do the paleo thing because it helps with preventing gluttony, but also because I still don’t have the time to make bread that didn’t make us sick.

  5. MyCroft Jones said what I was going to say about wheat. So instead I’ll just point out that when you look at photos of large crowds in 1930s America, you often can’t spot a single fat person. It’s not because everybody ate less and exercised more then; in reality, most white collar workers exercised less. It’s because the food supply has changed in fundamental ways, and much of it isn’t really food any more. Wheat is just one example; our wheat isn’t what those characters in the Bible ate.

  6. @MJ, LtRM, & JC

    Wheat is just one example; our wheat isn’t what those characters in the Bible ate.

    Just to be clear: I’m not an expert on those things, and I wasn’t telling anyone else that if they don’t eat bread they’re not a “Real Bible Christian”, or that the eating of wheat bread is imperative for Christians. I’m telling you my approach to any topic.

    Does the Bible talk about _______? If yes, follow Its example on ________ . If no, more research is needed. Wheat bread is not a very important topic; considering that I still routinely break the Ten Commandments; routinely trespass against the Two Great Commandments; routinely produce fruit of the flesh and not fruits of the spirit. Such research can probably wait while I go ask forgiveness for my trespasses, or any of the other things that I really need to do.

  7. Pingback: Responses to Alternatives | Free Northerner

  8. Oh, understood. My point was only that the Bible gives ingesting hints at an alternative explanation to the paleo fairy tale for why eating “bread” isn’t a good idea now.

    Avoiding fads and critically examining their premises isn’t a bad idea at all, and I whole heartedly agree that the evo-psych blather used to justify much of Game is very shaky ground indeed.

    You don’t need Just So Stories about cavemen to explain why people do what they do, when perfectly good and valid explanations are already available to the Christian.

  9. “Interesting”, not ingesting. Your blog does not format well phone for some reason.

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