Monday, February 19, 2018

Books, Podcasts, Video Channels & More for the Curious

While I am interested in a variety of weird and interesting conspiracy type things, as a Christian, I try to be careful about sources. I can be pretty discerning about sifting through information to discard what may not be in line with my faith.

There are a few books, websites, and YouTube channels I've checked out that I'd like to pass along.

Books




I checked this out a few weeks ago from my local library. I'm in a teeny-tiny town so, if our library had a copy, I'm sure most libraries have one.

This book takes you through the ways Hollywood (and its culture) has infiltrated and influenced society and even politics. It touches on morals, social programming (brainwashing), and how the various "enlightened" (see postscript)  new age agendas have trickled from Hollywood and into the lives of consumers.

Some of the things I learned about - or at least want to look more into:

- How the movie rating system began and how it's evolved;
- stories behind some popular films and the filmmakers (especially Oliver Stone); and
- the various connections between Hollywood and the political world.
My one big criticism of this book is that it goes all no-holds-barred on any left-wing influencers (think Clinton, Obama, and their circles) while it holds back a bit on conservatives (Reagan really gets a pass).  This is my pet peeve with most of my Christian brothers and sisters when we assess the secular society. We are like voters who toe the party line and stick with our side no matter how awful they might be. If we have any "line" drawn in the sand, the only two sides should be Behaving Badly and Striving to do Better.

This is a huge book so be ready to take notes unless you buy your own copy.


The Truth Behind Hip Hop (by G. Craige Lewis)

I discovered the Truth Behind Hip Hop (TBHH) video series a couple of years after it started coming out in 2009. There are now 11 videos in the series which have trailers and purchase options here. If you opt for downloading a video - rather than having a copy mailed to you-you will be using a custom player called LYNX that you have to download or access via a browser. There is a short (very short) trailer for the 12th installment of the series that you can view here. I know I am interested!

You can find some audio downloads of the author speaking here.

G. Craige Lewis is seen as controversial by some people, but I enjoy his ministry which can be checked out here (sermons) and here. He is an in-your-face, no-holds-barred, going to speak the truth kind of pastor. I might not always completely agree with every opinion he voices, but I respect the fact that he sticks to the Bible. He has a heart for the lost. Now on to the book:


This is my copy of The Truth Behind Hip Hop which is available from the ministry website or from Amazon.

I got the book that came in in 2009 because I wanted something I could refer back to again and again. There are many good lessons for living a Christian life in addition to what the author has to say about the music industry. 

When I told my family about this book, some of them didn't want to hear what I had to say, but now none of them can deny that the author has an important message. One of my nieces went home and threw out most of the music in her house. I myself have radically changed the way I view the music industry. When I do listen to music, I'm always listening for the deeper message that I'm sure is there.

Let me also say this: Lewis' ministry is one of the few I've known of that doesn't try leeching money from the people. This is why it's so important that you don't pirate the books or videos.  Oh, and since I'm about to list some podcasts, here two for Lewis that you should check out: True Church Perspective and EX-Cast.


PODCASTS & YOUTUBE CHANNELS

These are some podcasts I like. The player I use on my phone is Podcast Addict; I use iTunes on the computer. I will link to YouTube channels and websites but assume you can search out the podcasts.
  • 4th Watch with Justen Faull describes itself like this: "Supernatural and paranormal topics with Biblical perspective" and that is true. I'm new to this one and still haven't decided if I agree with the hosts perspective. On the Plus side, the show is very interesting and the host does depend on the Bible or his views. This is his YouTube.
  • Mysterious Universe is definitely NOT a Christian podcast. The topics are what attracts me. The hosts are very articulate and skilled at presenting their information. The only downside for me is that they seem to have zero religious beliefs, let alone any Christian viewpoints. I can say that I have never heard them bash Christianity as much as some other hosts do. The guys are a lot of fun to listen to. YouTube here.
  • Higherside Chats is another non-Christian podcasts/YouTube channel. There a lot of great conspiracy topics covered. 
  • Christian Theories (link here is for Soundcloud but iTunes carries this one also)
  • The Free Zone w/Freeman Fly (This guy's not a Christian. He can be... thought-provoking.)
  • Josh Peck Disclosure (I have zero ideas about him yet, but the titles sound interesting.)
AND, of course, BIBLE RELATED


  • The John Ankerberg Show has a podcast. (I will be covering the JA Show and site in my next post on specific Bible studies.
  • A study on Paul's message about the last days and times. Because, like most Christians have since Christ ascended, I believe we are living in them.
  • Let Us Reason is a site I refer to often when studying the Bible. There's tons of information for someone who may be new to the faith or just curious about Christianity. And, yes, you will find info on some weird stuff here too. 
I will expand on the Bible study list in a soon-upcoming post. I have a bunch more links and things to talk about for the curious person.


Peace
--Free


** I like to use the term "enlightened" (so-called) instead of "Illuminati" for a couple of reasons. First, Satanists and other pagan/anti-Christ folk think of themselves as being enlightened. Second, the term Illuminati has been dirtied up and is an easy target of silly criticism. Lucifer/Satan is referred to as "Light-bearer", son of the morning, and Morning Star. His followers (of all sects and organizations) think of themselves as "illumined". Maybe I will have to do a post on some of this!

Saturday, February 10, 2018

My Childhood Soundtrack Just Skipped

I was born in 1961 and didn't really pay attention to music until I was around 13 or 14. I guess, then, my memories should reflect against the music my parents played. Through mom and dad, I was exposed to all things Motown, jazz, blues, and some country. Through my friends, it was the Jackson 5 and the Sylvers. TV shows gave me music from the Archies, the Monkees, and whatever was on shows like the Brady Bunch.

I used to joke that my in my soul I was a little bit of a hippie. That's because I somehow my memories connect me to songs like "Downtown", "Mr. Tamborine Man", "Monday, Monday", "San Fransisco (Wear Flowers in Your Hair)", and "For What It's Worth". Now, because of the way my brain works, I don't ever think of the song titles; I just get a whiff of the melody and can run with it.

Recently, I chose an Audible selection that blew my mind and some of the cobwebs off my youth. It's made me rethink the whole thing about that period of music. Those hippie years weren't as innocent and beautiful as my soul would like to think. Matter of fact, that whole scene just got real dark for me.



This book by the late DaveMcGowen is something else. Among other things, here is some of what the book talks about:

  • Most of the singers/groups that came out in the 60s had parents that were military. And not just your military as in the run-of-the-mill soldier but as in high-security cleared folk. "Lizard King" Jim Morrison's dad was a Navy commander during the Gulf of Tonkin mess, er, I mean incident. John Phillips (think Mamas and Papas - you know, "Monday Monday" and "California Dreaming") dad was a Marine Corps captain; David Crosby (of both Crosby, Stills & Nash and The Byrds with songs like "Turn, Turn, Turn" and "Teach Your Children" which I find funny) was son of a WWII military intelligence officer); and even Frank Zappa whose dad was a freaking chemical warfare specialist). 
  • Suicide was like a plague among many of the cultural icons that came out of the Canyon - claiming either the icon or a close family member. 
  • A lot of these people not only hung out with Charles Manson but befriended him, put him up in their homes, and even used some of his music on their albums.
  • Many of the Laurel Canyon talent pool not only were not what we'd think of as "hippies" but most had very blue bloodlines. Seriously tied-to-historic-American-royalty blue.
  • A lot of the artists started with zero talent - as in not able to even play their instrument - but they were signed to labels immediately.
  • Check out this page if you want to read more about some of this.
I know that cultural celebrity is all about manufactured images, but this goes beyond that and into social manipulation and I feel so duped. Actually, a few years ago, I started looking at the contemporary music scene and realized this same thing. I guess I just thought the music of my youth was more "pure" and innocent. Nope. 

More seriously, I have been hearing more and more about how music can be used to manipulate the brain. Because I know that not everyone reading this post has a biblical worldview, I will list some sources that might appeal to the secular mind:
  1. The first article from Scientific American on how music can change the way we think.
  2. The second article from SA (a guest post) that goes a little further on the same subject.
Now, for those who don't mind being called a religious nut or conspiracy theorist, check these out this article by someone who studies music (and happens to be  Christian). 

Also, I wanted to share a video that I found interesting. The effect of sound waves on rice just blew my mind. 

I've been doing some Bible study lately that focuses on Lucifer and what he is and is not capable of. One of the things I always kind of sort of knew (from spending so much time in church as a child) is that Lucifer was involved with music in Heaven. How funny that I can see now how music can be used to manipulate us. As one minister has pointed out (and I am paraphrasing from my weak memory):
 
"Music is worship. In church, we sing praises and raise our hands to God. Ever notice how in concerts fans are encouraged to say the name of the performer or to raise their hands? Who are they worshipping - the performer? The god the performer worships?"

This same minister also pointed out the power of music by reminding us of David using the harp to soothe Saul.

Sometimes, I regret learning stuff because then I can no longer hide behind ignorance. Now that I am more aware of how music can be used to manipulate and control us, I am careful of what I let into my heart and mind through sounds.

On the last note (see what I did there?), I would suggest that when you listen to music make sure you pay attention to the lyrics. I never used to and now I am always surprised at what I hear. Go look at the lyrics for Beatle George Harrison's song "My Sweet Lord" (which I always thought was a Christian song). Then look at what he says about the song:

"My idea in "My Sweet Lord," because it sounded like a "pop song," was to sneak up on them a bit. The point was to have the people not offended by "Hallelujah," and by the time it gets to "Hare Krishna," they're already hooked, and their foot's tapping, and they're already singing along "Hallelujah," to kind of lull them into a sense of false security. And then suddenly it turns into "Hare Krishna," and they will all be singing that before they know what's happened, and they will think, "Hey, I thought I wasn't supposed to like Hare Krishna!" Interview with Mukunda Goswami (4 September 1982)

His sneakiness sure worked because I didn't even notice the Hare Krishna part for years. Harrison wanted nothing to do with the God I worship (because he saw no "proof" of Him) and he made that clear. That's okay because I want nothing to do with Harrison's god. I do hope that he had a chance to find God before he passed from this life into eternity with whatever choice he made.

So, yeah. There's my post about how a book made me take yet another look at the music I grew up on.

Peace
--Free

Friday, January 26, 2018

Not the Jabbawockeez!

If you read my other blog, BeingFree, you might know I was able to see the Jabbawockeez live in Vegas in December.

I'm adding them to my What. What? list of possible sellouts to the System. I was watching YouTube videos of Jabbawockeez performances when I started to notice something.




What. What?

For those of you still reading this post, there's more than one thing that bothers me about that hand sign:
  • Even if it doesn't mean all the evil, creepy stuff I think it does, why are so many people throwing it up?




  • The Jabbas are, I believe, famous for managing to be unique in the world of dance. Following the crowd with that hand sign is not unique. 
  • If that sign isn't sinister it still is, at the least, just plain silly.
By the way, I posted about some of these signs a long time ago. I won't go into all of that here, but you can check out this page to see more photos. I'm sure it's all coincidence. 

After noticing that first little hand sign, I was willing to give the Wockeez the benefit of doubt. But I kept noticing things in their other images:

INSERT

Once again, you'd think that a person might just be making a random gesture, but I have to wonder when so many different people make that same gesture:

INSERT


Especially when this dude does it:


At least he doesn't try to hide his philosophy:

Or who he admires:


Of course, I can wear a WWJD t-shirt and still be a poor Christian, but you would have an idea of what I'm trying to be.

I think we get so used to hearing about and seeing these signs and symbols that we don't think about where they come from or what they mean. According to various sources, they horns symbol (Mano Cornuto) could be mistaken for the symbols used by sports fans, heavy metal fans, etc. It's also used by Wiccans to represent the horned god, and has been known as being the sign to ward off the 'evil eye'. I'm just not sure why so many people use it so often.

At any rate, I'm watching those Wockeez to see if they are originals or followers.

Peace
--Free

Books, Podcasts, Video Channels & More for the Curious

While I am interested in a variety of weird and interesting conspiracy type things, as a Christian, I try to be careful about sources. I can...