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Billionth Birthsecond
Calculate exact seconds elapsed
Sat January 11 2020  5:58pmComputer

It's probably a guy thing, like watching the car's odometer roll over to 100,000 miles. But, when you think about it, observing birthseconds is really no different than celebrating birthdays. Specifically, the occurrence of one's billionth birthsecond is a rather singular milestone in one's life span. It is the only birthsecond magnitude one can observe with any real appreciation. The next lower magnitude, that of 100 million seconds, occurs when one is just a tad over 3 years old, too young to grasp what such a number entails. The next larger magnitude, 10 billion seconds, occurs at an interval of over 300 years; no chance to observe that event.


Just shy of 32 years of age, the billionth birthsecond could be seen as a sort of coming of age. You're a complete adult now, having typically completed your formal education, embarked upon a career and vocation, fully established, experienced, and capable of assuming leadership while retaining the strength of youth. The moment marking the prime of life. Very close to a hobbit's coming of age at 33 years (ref. The Lord of the Rings).

One could also make an argument for observing one's conceptionsecond (and conceptionday), as that is when one's life really began. We are all about nine months older than our birth age. But it's difficult to determine the exact day, much less the time of day, marking that beginning. Births tend to be more public events than conceptions, and so birthdays and birthseconds are more readily observed.

At any rate, I thought it a worthy and interesting subject for thought. So much so that my first foray into javascript programming was a series of simple calculators that compute the elapsed seconds between two dates and times, and so facilitate (among other things) the observance of one's billionth birthsecond. If you're interested, check it out at ../calc/seccalc.php . If you're 31+ years of age, your billionth birthsecond is near!

  1 comment
rev. Wed May 6  11:50am
Two more false oppositions
Tue December 31 2019  10:20amFaith/Philosophy

Here are a couple more examples of true and false opposition, in which a hyper or exaggerated version of something becomes its very opposite:

Distributism vs. Capitalism

mega economy
local control
Many small
state controls all
control all

In conformity with modern parlance, I'm using here the term 'capitalism' to refer to our current experience of large corporate capitalism, what some might call late-stage capitalism. This is but a perverse exaggeration of a small-scale and more reasonable capitalism, what is now called distributism.

Distributism has been championed by such diverse thinkers as G. K. Chesterton and Thomas Jefferson. As the name suggests, distributism puts economic and political power in many small hands, mostly at a local level. I believe it was Chesterton who said, "The problem with capitalism is not too many capitalists, but too few capitalists". The original U.S. Constitution gave the vote to landowners, as these were seen as having a legitimate stake in setting government policies. Jefferson's vision was for as many small landowners and small businesses as possible, thus distributing economic and political power widely to many legitimate stakeholders.

Distributism, or small-scale capitalism, remains the most equitable and human alternative to the false opposition of socialism vs. late-stage corporate capitalism, both of which concentrate power in the hands of a few elite. In our present unwieldy system, the humongous state controls the corporations, and the humongous corporations own the politicians, so there isn't a nickel's difference between the two ideologies, opposite though they may seem. Either way, you're a slave, whether to Walmart and Microsoft, or to bloated government bureaucracy.

Love vs. Unconditional Love

& reciprocal
cold, unfeeling
unconditional love
makes no demands

Returning to a more specifically religious theme, we've all heard the seemingly inarguable axiom: God's love is unconditional. There are no limits to his love, and nothing we can do to increase or diminish it.

Since God's love is unconditional, one might surmise, it follows that he can never be displeased with any of us; his blessings are assured, no strings attached. Whether I seek his will or go my own way, God holds me in the same high regard. Even were I to deliberately commit grave sin, and willfully reject God, he would love and embrace me all the same. In fact, if God's love is all-encompassing, perhaps there is no such thing as sin. My consciousness of wrongdoing before God is just my over-scrupulous imagination; in reality I cannot offend God at all, since he loves me no matter what. Quite obviously, then, there can be no Hell, and I can be sure of enjoying eternal life hereafter regardless of how I may have lived in this world. Even Hitler and Mussolini must be in Heaven.

But wait - can love be thrust upon someone who doesn't want it? Would that be true love? It may be better to say that love, by definition, must be freely offered, not forced upon the recipient. And if freely offered, it must be freely received and reciprocated. This means it may also be freely rejected. This is what sin is: a rejection of God's love, and of the demands of that love. We must, in fact, be able to completely and finally reject God's offer of love. This is what Hell is. Jesus, the very embodiment of God's love, warned of eternal Hell more than any other prophet or teacher of the Bible.

Moreover, an unconditional love which makes no demands, which always accepts the recipient just as he is, seems quite passive. Neither participant is expected to do much of anything; it is an agreement to just let be, much the same as indifference. But God's love is anything but passive or indifferent. Jesus loves us to the point of dying on the cross to restore our broken relationship with the Father. He requires something from us as well.

If true love makes demands, God's love, being perfect love, demands everything in return. To be sure, God knows our frail nature, and his demands are very lenient. He offers to forgive and cleanse us of our sins and gather us into his eternal home. In return, we must agree with God that our sin is evil, repent of those sins, and join ourselves completely to the crucified and risen Jesus, holding nothing back. Is this unconditional love? I think it's the opposite, and immeasurably better.

  1 comment
true and false opposites
Wed December 18 2019  8:07amFaith/Philosophy

Patriarchy vs. Machismo

Patriarchy literally means 'fathers rule'. If you think 'machismo' means patriarchal, you've got another think coming. The machismo man may strut and crow like a banty rooster, but the last thing he is is a responsible father. The machismo spirit that some consider patriarchal is very compatible with feminism. If the man is cocky and irresponsible, it's probably because the woman is independent and responsible for everything, or because of socialist programs that undermine his paternal obligations.

So when feminists (or egalitarians) equate machismo with true patriarchy, they are equivocating. What at first (read article)

rev. Sat Feb 22  1:49pm
CyberJerry software license
Tue December 3 2019  12:42pmComputer

Starting a few days ago, the comments area on Jerry's Blog now contains a few words reminding you that your comment is a public work and may be quoted, copied, and shared freely by other people. This is simply an explicit disclaimer of what was always implicit, applicable to pretty much any blog comment on the internet. What's new is that large segments of this website, including Jerry's Blog, are now protected by the Gnu General Public License (GPL). A public license is sometimes called copyleft protection. Conventional copyright means that nobody can copy the work without explicit permission. Copyleft means that the public may freely copy it, but they cannot later claim (read article)

Honoring the name my father gave me
Thu October 24 2019  4:33pmMisc.

Am planning some small website changes soon, but first want to publicly clarify another matter that is of great personal import and may also have a slight impact on the planned website changes.

My family name is DePyper, a compound, two-part surname of Belgian origin. Am not sure of the etymology; it may originally have meant something like 'the piper', as in the village flute player, or, more likely, 'of (the town of) Pyper'. Either way, 'Pyper' was the important part, and 'De' (or 'de') merely the prefix.

I grew up learning to write my family name as DePyper, but also to recognize and accept De Pyper and de Pyper (read article)

  1 comment
rev. Nov 26 2019  6:40pm
Massive flight away from reality
Fri July 19 2019  12:30pmFaith/Philosophy

A principal symptom of psychosis, especially of schizophrenia, is a profound disconnection from reality. The patient, for emotional or organic reasons, does not relate to his surroundings in a rational manner. He often constructs his own private reality quite different from the world in which more sane folks live.

We are in the midst of the modern Dark Ages, an epoch of human history marked by a mass departure from reality. An age in which certain psychoses become acceptable because believed in by so many, perhaps by the majority. But if everybody believes in an alternate reality, does that alternative therefore become true? I think not.

100 or even 50 years ago, it (read article)

New Math
Fractional-Exponential Integer Math
Thu July 11 2019  10:09amComputer

This old dog is learning a new trick. Specifically, a new math programming technique, called Fractional-Exponential Integer Math. Less complicated than it sounds. It is "a programming technique for storing and computing fractional and exponential numbers without the inaccuracies inherent to floating point numbers. . . It is precise because all numeric values are stored internally as integers."

It began for me earlier this year when I participated in an online math challenge at , my favorite online forum. My (read article)

  1 comment
I'd rather have a bottle in front of me than a frontal lobotomy.
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12/14/17Sudoku Challenge
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Copyright (c) 2017-2020 Gerald DePyper - Jinotega, Nicaragua, C.A.
rev. 2020.08.05