Documentary: ‘Harmony, A New Way of Looking At Our World’

30 11 2010

Inspired by HRH The Prince of Wales, HARMONY captures on film in a way we’ve never seen before, an authentic leader on critical global issues. For the better part of three decades, The Prince of Wales has worked side by side with a surprising and dynamic array of environmental activists, business leaders, artists, architects and government leaders. They are working to transform the world, address the global environmental crisis and find ways toward a more sustainable, spiritual and harmonious relationship with the planet. From organic farms, to the rainforests of British Columbia, to rare footage of HRH interviewing Al Gore about climate change in 1988 – Harmony introduces viewers to a new and inspiring perspective on how the world can meet the challenges of climate change globally, locally and personally.

Harmony looks at the root causes of the global problems we face and offers solutions. HARMONY paints a picture of an awareness that is arising in people around the globe across boundaries of geography, race religion and socio-economic status. At a moment when we hear daily about challenges on an unprecedented planetary scale, Harmony proposes a way forward and provides the audience with a new perspective on the need to change our relationship with the planet. Harmony is a global call to action. We invite viewers to get involved and join those who are working to restore balance in their lives and on the planet. Harmony is narrated by HRH The Prince of Wales and produced and directed by award winning filmmakers with Academy Award and Directors Guild nominations to their credit.

“Imagine a healthier, safer and more sustainable, economically robust world. Because if we share in that vision, we can share the will to action that is now required.”

“Our children and grandchildren will ask not what our generation said, but what it did. So let us give an answer for which we can be proud.”

‘Harmony’ trailer:

Watch the full NBC Broadcast here.

Official website.

Follow ‘Harmony’ on Twitter.

Like ‘Harmony’ on Facebook.

Get the book here, and DVD here.


Movie: ‘Joyeux Noel’

29 11 2010

Joyeux Noël (English: Merry Christmas) is a 2005 film about the World War I Christmas truce of December 1914, depicted through the eyes of French, Scottish and German soldiers. In 1914, World War I, the bloodiest war ever at that time in human history, was well under way. However on Christmas Eve, numerous sections of the Western Front called an informal, and unauthorized, truce where the various front-line soldiers of the conflict peacefully met each other in No Man’s Land to share a precious pause in the carnage with a fleeting brotherhood. This film dramatizes one such section as the French, Scottish and German sides partake in the unique event, even though they are aware that their superiors will not tolerate its occurrence.

Movie: ‘Agora’

20 11 2010

In the 4th century city of Alexandria, in the Roman Empire, Greek philosopher Hypatia (Rachel Weisz), is a female teacher at the Platonic school, where future leaders are educated. Hypatia is the daughter of Theon (Michael Lonsdale), the director of the Musaeum of Alexandria. Hypatia, her slave Davus (Max Minghella), and her pupils, Orestes (Oscar Isaac) and Synesius (Rupert Evans), are immersed in the changing political and social landscape. She rejects her student Orestes’s love, because she prefers to stay an independent scientist. Davus assists Hypatia in her classes and is interested in science, and is also secretly in love with her.

Meanwhile, social unrest begins challenging the Roman rule of the city as pagans and Christians come into conflict. When the Christians start defiling the statues of the pagan’s gods, the pagans, including Orestes and Hypatia’s father, ambush the Christians to quash their rising influence. However, in the ensuing battle, the pagans unexpectedly find themselves outnumbered by a large Christian mob. Hypatia’s father is gravely injured and Hypatia and the pagans take refuge in the Library of the Serapeum. The Christian siege of the library ends when an envoy of the Roman Emperor declares that the Christians shall be allowed to enter the library. Hypatia and the pagans flee, trying to save the most important scrolls, before the Christians overtake the library and destroy its contents. Davus, torn between his love for Hypatia and the possibility of gaining his freedom by joining the rising tide of Christianity, and annoyed by Hypatia calling him an idiot for not being present when he is needed most to help saving the scrolls, chooses to join the Christian forces. He returns with a sword and starts sexually assaulting her, but quickly regrets this and offers his sword to her to kill him. However, she removes the slave collar around his neck and tells him he is free now.

Several years later, Orestes, now converted to Christianity, is prefect of Alexandria. Hypatia continues to investigate the motions of the Sun, the Moon, the five known “wanderers” (planets) and the stars. Some ridicule Hypatia for thinking that the Earth is a sphere, by arguing that people far from the top would fall off the Earth. When they ask Davus his opinion he avoids conflict by saying that only God knows these things.

Hypatia also investigates the heliocentric model of the solar system proposed by Aristarchus of Samos; by having an object dropped from the mast of a moving ship she demonstrates to Orestes that a possible motion of the Earth would not affect the motion, relative to Earth, of a falling object on Earth. However, due to religious objections against heliocentrism, the Christians have now forbidden Hypatia from teaching at the school. The Christians and the Jews come into conflict, committing violent acts against each other, with the Christians ultimately wresting power from the only other religious group remaining. Davus, remembering how Hypatia forgave him, suggests that perhaps the Christians should forgive the Jews, as Jesus did, but the Christians respond by rebuking him for comparing himself with Jesus.

The leader of the Christians, Cyril (Sami Samir), views Hypatia as having too much influence over Orestes and stages a public ceremony intended to force Orestes to subjugate her. Hypatia’s former pupil, Synesius, now the Bishop of Cyrene, comes to her rescue as a religious authority counterweight, but says he cannot help her unless she accepts Christianity; she refuses. Hypatia makes a great discovery, finding that the Earth orbits around the Sun in an elliptic, not circular, orbit with the Sun at one of the foci. Cyril convinces a mob of Christians that Hypatia is a witch and they vow to kill her. Davus tries to run ahead to warn Hypatia, but she is captured by the mob. Before killing her they strip Hypatia naked and beat her until Davus tells the mob to stone her. When everyone goes outside to collect stones, Davus, with Hypatia’s consent, secretly suffocates her. Since she is already dead, she does not feel anything when the crowd begins to stone her.

Revelation: Shane Wood (Ozark Professor)

19 11 2010

Shane Wood is the husband of Sara Wood and proud father of Zion, Paige, and Maddox. After graduating from Ozark Christian College in 2004 with a B.B.L. and B.Th. (New Testament), he pursued his M.Div. and M.A. in New Testament Studies from Lincoln Christian Seminary, which he received with the completion of his thesis on the Exegesis of Revelation 20. Shane and his family are now living in Joplin, MO, and he is working at Ozark Christian College as the Director of Youth Minister Relations and teaching part-time in the college.
In September 2009, Shane began his Ph.D. at the University of Edinburgh in the area of the Politics of John in the book of Revelation.

Simplifying Revelation – Session 1: Introduction

Simplifying Revelation – Session 2: Are we Living in the Last Days? and What is Prophecy?

Simplifying Revelation – Session 3: The Genre of the Book of Revelation

Click here for the rest of Shane’s ‘Revelation’ seminar on YouTube.

For more info about ‘Revelation’ by Shane click here.

Click here for Shane’s book on Revelation.

Article by Shane: Jesus Didn’t Live the “Christian Life”

Jesus Didn’t Live a “Christian Life,” and We Shouldn’t Either: The List or a Lifestyle—The Problem of Spiritual Disciplines (Part 1) Wrestling with the Lists: Symptoms of a Problem

They gave simple, predictable answers, but I was still was shocked.

“What characterizes the Christian life?,” I asked.

As if reading from a script, the class began to offer answer after answer, “Prayer…Fasting…Devotions…Journaling… Meditation…reading your Bible…etc.”

Each answer was written on the board filling up the space with a definition of the Christian life—a List of things to do. This is what they had been taught from their Sunday school classes from the age of four. Or if they had just become a Christian, this doctrinal-like mantra was chanted in their ears each time they darkened the door of the church. “If you want to be a Christian—if you want to draw closer to Jesus, then this is what you do…[insert spiritual disciplines].”

In fact, these are the answers I too had been programmed to recite—The List being tattooed on my heart as I emerged from the womb. And sermon after sermon, lesson after lesson, devotional after devotional, from the time I was a baby and even through my years of Bible college, The List was repeated, repackaged, and restated. So their answers did not shock me…it was something else.

Another question was offered, “What characterized the life of Jesus?”

Without hesitation, answers began to erupt, “Eating with sinners…serving the least of these…loving his enemies…caring for prostitutes and tax collectors…seeking and saving the lost…loving the outcast…sacrificing for the marginalized…etc.”

Each answer was written on the board filling up the space with a definition of the life of Jesus—a lifestyle of love and sacrifice.

And then came a simple question that shocked me, “Why are the two lists different?” Why is it that when we think of the life of a Christian [literally, “little Christ”], do we focus on actions and duties that were present in Jesus’ life but did not characterize his life? Why are Christians not “known” for the things that Jesus was known for? In other words, if we claim to be “followers of Jesus,” then how is it that our List is different from his list? Shouldn’t the lists be…”

Click here to finish reading part 1 of this article.

Jesus Didn’t Live a “Christian Life,” and We Shouldn’t Either (Part 2): The List or a Lifestyle—On Not Beginning with the End. The Lord, Our Lens, and the Wardrobe: Making Jesus in Our Own Image

“Most of my life, Jesus looked like a white, middle-class Republican—a depiction that poses a major problem.

My problem with this representation is NOT that Jesus is “Republican” instead of “Democrat” or “white” instead of “black” or “rich” instead of “poor”—my problem is that I have turned Jesus into me and then started worshiping him. Now if I wanted to receive worship, I would change my initials to J.C. and start referring to myself as “the anointed one,” but I would rather allow the David Koresh’s of the world to continue their monopoly on this egocentric idolatry. Instead, I want to worship Jesus for who he truly is—which is not like me at all. I want to see him and hear him on his own terms—even if that means he would fit in modern categories that I am not comfortable with, like: “liberal” or “subversive” or “countercultural” or even “political revolutionary.” Because more than a political agenda or a national identity, I want to be molded by the King of kings to whom I solely pledge my allegiance.”

Click here to finish reading part 2 of Shane’s article.

Politics & Religion

2 11 2010

Signs from the ‘Rally To Restore Sanity’ on 10/30/2010

2 11 2010

Rally To Restore Sanity