Tuesday, February 28, 2006

Gonzaga Celebration

Here is a video of theGonzaga post game celebration after they finished their last home game. The highlight is when Batista's brother came out. They hadn't seen each other in 4 years.

Also, I just found a sweet blog about the zags. Its calledLA Revolucion/. Its pretty much hilarious, and the dude knows his stuff about the team and the game (a hell of a lot more than I do anyways). Check it out if you're interested.

Awesome Saint - Edith Stein

In philosophy we began studying the school of thought known as Phenomenology. In our studies, we've begun reading from a great Phenomenologist and relatively recently canonized saint, Edith Stein. She is absolutely fascinating. Her writing is fairly difficult to understand, but her life was what struck me as most interesting. Here are some highlights.

Edith Stein was born in Poland. She was raised Jewish, but embraced atheism in her early years. She loved studying philosophy and ended up earning a Ph.D in the subject. (If I'm not mistaken, at this particular time, the early 1900s, a woman earning a Ph.D would have been sort of a "new" thing) She studied under famous phenomenologist Husserl. She read the autobiography of St. Teresa of Jesus and was moved to convert to Catholicism. In 1933, she became a Carmelite and took the name Teresa Benedicta of the Cross. When the Nazis came into power, she had to flee the convent to keep her sisters safe from Nazi harm. Since she was of Jewish descent, she was arrested in the Netherlands and taken to the concentration camp at Auschwitz. Here, she was killed in the gas chamber, and her body was cremated. In 1998 she was officially canonized by Pope John Paul II.

Her philosophy also went on to influence Pope John Paul II. His encyclical "Faith and Reason," (Fidei et Ratio in Latin, I believe) mentions her.

St. Edith Stein, Pray for us!

Monday, February 27, 2006

Satellite Dishes = No good

So I'm watching the Gonzaga game and its going down to the wire. There are like twenty seconds left, and JP Batista makes a layin to go up by two. Then the rain knocked out the dish, so I couldn't see how it ended. I had to find that out on the internet, and it turns out the zags won on a last second 3 pointer by Altidor-Cespedes (who is quickly becoming one of my favorite players). And I missed it!

Anyways, I know this will sound messed up, but I kind of would have liked to see the zags lose. I know it was senior night, and I know it kept their streak alive, but come tournament time it is nice to remember how much it sucks to lose. It can just help you out a bit, I think. Gonzaga has a long winning streak, but when they get into the tournament having recently lost might actually help them realize that they aren't invincible. The field of 65 isnt exactly the West Coast Conference.

And with that Being said, it is frustrating to watch the second half of the zags conference schedule. The teams all failed to beat them playing technical ball, so they have to go ahead and make the game as physical as possible in order to win. It doesnt make for clean game. But maybe that will help the zags come tourney time.

I want to see them in the Final Four danget!

But enough of this stuff. I'm a seminarian. I should be studying.

New look

I decided to select a new design for this little blog. The other one kind of got annoying. This one is simpler, and I will be able to make more little changes here and there with my limited knowledge of html codes. The links on the side bar are gone for a little while, but they will be back soon.

Sunday, February 26, 2006

Great Video

American Papist put up a link for a great video.

Here it is. Give it a chance and watch the whole thing.

Friday, February 24, 2006

Some Good Nietzsche Quotes

This week in philosophy was probably one of the best weeks of that class we have had. We went over famous Athiest thinker Friedrich Nietzsche and then over Cardinal Newman. Nietzsche was interesting because of how absurd some of his statements were. Here are some "gems" from Nietzsche that demonstrate his disdain for what he considers to be weak:

- If a woman has manly virtues, one feels like running away; and if she has no manly virtues, she herself runs away.

- Women are considered profound. Why? Because one never fathoms their depths. Women aren't even shallow.

- What is more harmful that any vice? Active pity for all the failures and all the weak: Christianity.

- Christianity has sided with all that is weak and base, with all failures.

- The problem I thus pose is not what shall succeed mankind in the sequence of living beings, but what type of man shall be bred, shall be willed, for being higher in value, worthier of life, more certain of a future.

Some life worthier than other life? Wasn't it that idea that the Nazis ran with?


SWEET! The folks at Cosmos-Liturgy-Sex have added my little blog to their list of links! CLS is a great blog, so go ahead and give them a read.

Tuesday, February 21, 2006

Weekend at the OC

I had an awesome weekend away from the Seminary down in Orange County. I went to visit some friends in Dana Point CA, and Laguna Beach CA. The weather was incredible and I had some time to sit, think, and pray. Overall it was a much needed few days.

But, reality hit now that I am back at School. I am planning a discernment retreat (for some dioceses I don't even belong to) that is less than three weeks away. I also have a greek test tomorrow that will be difficult. Then the writing starts, with Philosophy, New Testament, and systematic Theology all having assignments due.

Gonzaga looked good against Pepperdine. It was fabulous seeing Altidor-Cespedes have a career high 17. Raivio hit double digits again, and we saw more of the same from Batista and Morrison. I'm really liking Gurganious' defense off the bench too. Can't wait for tourney time!

Youth In Asia Part II

My Letter to the editor of the Western Front got published.

A couple things were changed, but overall I'm happy with it.

Friday, February 17, 2006

Mary Meets Dolly

Of all the links to Catholic Blogs I've recently added on the right side Mary Meets Dolly is one of the most interesting. It is a must read for any Catholic or Medical Ethicist. Check out this article about another breakthrough using ADULT stem cells to treat Alzeihmers.

This takes me back

Its Friday, and you know what that means. Room cleaning day! And you know what that means. Find something, anything, to do besides cleaning my room.

All I needed to do was think about something funny. Oooh! I know. Kiet fell down during Mass yesterday! That was funny! Kind of reminds me of watching people fall down at Western when the bricks get frosty.

Thats when I was reminded of one of my favorite columns in the Western Front. This pass time of watching people fall down on bricks was suggested by a guy who used to write for the Front named Mike Baab. So I've been reading all of his columns here on the front's website. (You'll have to type in "Mike Baab" to see his columns.)

My favorites include his trip to Canada on the Eve of President's day, his insiders view of Starbucks, and his BINGO experience in Ferndale. But the best is his final column in which he summarized his favorite (and least favorite) things about western, including the best place to go to the bathroom.

This weekend I'll be heading down to the OC and hopefully to San Diego. Should be rad.


Monday, February 13, 2006


The last couple of days (Sunday and Monday) I had the opportunity to go with some of my classmates from my seminary to an event called Intersem. This is sort of a forum for Catholic, Jewish, and Protestant seminarians to get together and discuss issues that affect our faiths. This years theme was "How Could God Let This Happen?" It focused on suffering in the world and how our traditions view it.

It also gave us an opportunity to see how the other faiths pray. We had Mass, and then members from the other faiths asked us questions about what and why we do the things we do. Then the protestants went, and then the Jews went. Since I have had quite a bit of experience with protestant worship, there wasn't a lot that was new to me. The Jewish service, on the other hand, was completely new to me and was very interesting. They sang Psalm 150 and Hebrew and it was absolutely beautiful. THey had a lot of physical symbolism attached to their worship, so it was intersting to watch, and listen to their explanations on what everything was.

We also had the chance to visit in small groups. My group was made up of 3 of us Catholics, and 3 Jews (1 conservative and 2 reformed). It was interesting that the Jews unanimously seemed to have a fear (all though it's probably better to phrase it as "foreseen annoyance) that we would try to prosletyze. Meanwhile, I think we were afraid of saying things that would offend. For example, it came up on whether it was considered offensive to refer to the Hebrew Scriptures as the Old Testament (none of them really cared, if you were wondering).

The weekend was spent not holding any of our traditions back. We showed each other everything, and without apologies, practiced our faiths devoutly. This was the most ecumenical experience I ever had. It makes me think back to college in the Shalomer, with Jews, Catholics and Lutherans, who never made it near what we accomplished in less than 24 hours at intersem. I think this is because we had been fed beliefs that practicing our faiths devoutly (in our case, displaying crucifixes or having anti-abortion materials on display) would offend others. I much favor the hold nothing back approach to ecumanism.

Hopefully in a week or so a couple of us catholics will head over to the UJ (university of Judaism) and dialogue more.

Friday, February 10, 2006

new blogging feature

Check out this article about Adam Morrison and his diabetes.

Its not that exciting. I'm just trying out a new blogging feature that allows me to add links to web pages faster. For a long time I've been wanting to post more links from Internet articles I read...But I'm too lazy. This will allow me to do that.

Youth In Asia

...Oh...I mean...Euthanasia.

Recently there was an article written in wwu's newspaper, The Western Front, about Euthanasia. The Article was a fairly shallow view of the issue, and arrived at the wrong conclusion, I felt. So I wrote a letter to the editor. Here it is (minus a few last minute changes):

Oppinion piece fails to address most common reasons for euthanasia

Dear Editor,

I would like to comment on Megan Lum’s opinion piece in the January 27th issue of the Western Front entitled “Terminal Patients Deserve Dignity.” Although I felt Miss Lum displayed remarkable compassion towards the dying, this compassion has led her, and many others at Western, into misguided beliefs relating to end of life issues, resulting in advocacy for euthanasia and physician assisted suicide (PAS).

There were some glaring misconceptions about patients requesting euthanasia and PAS that Miss Lum made crucial to her argument. First, she assumes that pain is a leading reason patients request death. This is not actually the case. I encourage anyone reading this to google “Requests for euthanasia AND pain,” and they will find many articles suggesting that pain is not a widely held motive to request euthanasia or PAS. Rather, the most common motives are hoplessness, depression, and psychological distress. It seems to me that providing better psychological care to dying patients is a better solution to dignify patients, as opposed to the killing of patients.

Miss Lum argues that, ”Assisted suicide merely allows a person the choice to end an already lost battle on their own terms.” This sheds light on another misconception that all euthanasia patients are in a “lost battle,” and very near death. Euthanasia.com, a website cited by Miss Lum, explains that most euthanasia laws around the world, including the ones she mentioned in her article, extend the right to die to those with difficult to manage (yet treatable) illnesses. Again, it is more likely that the psychological state of the ill person is a more likely motive for euthanasia or PAS than the physical condition of the person.

Miss Lum correctly stated that our nation was founded on the principle of liberty. However the other inalienable rights, those of life and the pursuit of happiness, are also present. These principles can’t be compromised as easily as Miss Lum thinks. A person should not be able to take a life for the sake of liberty, even if it is their own. This idea, I realize, is very difficult for many people to grasp. Miss Lum’s attempt to justify euthanasia or PAS, while noble in its intention, unconscionably fails to draw attention to possible unforeseen consequences that will surely stem from protecting the “right to die” through legislation.

Bryan Ochs

Western Alumnus

Tuesday, February 07, 2006

Sad Super Bowl Loss

The super bowl was rediculously sad. I thought the Seahawks played pretty bad. I thought the Steelers played bad too, and it was hard not getting any breaks from the officiating.

Its interesting though, that all the talk about the bad reffing originated in the non-Steeler, non-Seahawk fan world. It came from the people who didn't have any loyalty to either team that felt the most cheated. I reviewed a transcript on ESPN. Com of a Live Game Chat. The Seahawks fans, at the end of the game, congratulated the Steelers fans. Then it was the people from the midwest, one from Chicago to come to mind, that said if he was a Seahawk fan he would be pissed off at how bad the officiating was. Then I started poking around different websites and watching shows on ESPN like Around the Horn and PTI that showed a lot of anger at the officials.

It is kind of consoling. what can I say other than that. I'm still disapointed. Hopefully the Seahawks will be back next year, but we have some improving to do, and we need to resign some players. If Alexander wants that much money, I think we can let him go. We will use our franchise tag for Hutchinson, if we don't sign him to a long term deal. Then I would love to see Jurevicious back in a hawk uniform. The odds arent in our favor though. The last few super bowl losers finished with losing records.

In Basketball, I sure hope the huskies figure out how to win again. It has been rediculous watching them lose.

The Zags are still playing fairly well, but they will be in trouble come tournament time if Adam Morrison is even a little bit off. I would love to see Raivio start making some buckets. I'm starting to love Pierre Marie though. I will definately be checking out that Stanford at Gonzaga game coming up.

Other than this its just studying and praying. Not much other than that.

Friday, February 03, 2006

Day of Recollection

Originally uploaded by oakdog6079.
My Class and I went on our Day of Recollection last wednesday. We went to a Passionist retreat center in Sierra Madre called Mater Dolorosa. It was very nice. This picture is from the chapel at the retreat center.

Our retreat director was an Opus Dei priest named Father Paul Donlan. He gave us some great talks on what it means to be a priest and a gentleman. We got a lot of prayer in, and it was good to be able to come together as a class.

If you want to see more pictures of Mater Dolorosa, please check out my FLICKr page.

Walk for Life West Coast

Walk for Life 1
Originally uploaded by oakdog6079.

I have uploaded my pictures from the Walk for Life West Coast onto my FLickr page. Check them out. It was a very intense time, but well worth it. I will be back next year.

For a summary of the day, please go to this link. But not if your sensative to Curse words or ugly women.