I love how Arya Stark has a list and the fact that she is religious about it. Yes, I did realise that the above image is outdated. The point though is all of us have some kind of list that we keep crossing things off. In my case, it is the imprecatory Psalm 69. I am not going to run around with a needle and stab the people on my list. I leave it in the hand of God. I do not know if I am wrong or right to maintain this list. If I am wrong then I know that I will be told off by my maker for I have made my peace. I have been clear in my mind for nearly 25 years that I want my epitaph to read “The Lord gave and the Lord taketh away; blessed be the name of the Lord.” Now I am considering adding my list of names below that. It just may work. Maybe when my time comes there will be some names that can be struck through and others that can be chiselled through after.
I love alternate indices. RAFI which can be invested through PowerShares is probably my favourite investable index. The other index I really like is the Christmas Price Index. I had written a post on the following topics
- Religion-based Indices
- Condoms and Chocolates
- Analysis Test Series England vs. South Africa
I am still in the process of tweaking my cricket index. The common assumption in all this is my strong belief that the methodology used to measure certain indices is not completely accurate and some like the ICC cricket ranking is completely wrong. One decision I really liked was a recommendation to buy the shares of Apple when the news that Steve Jobs had cancer broke out. Yes, I did feel sad that Steve Jobs had cancer but I absolutely was furious at the people who thought that Apple would collapse because Steve Jobs would no longer be involved and would die. Today I feel the same way about the negative ratings given by analysts about Apple. The good thing though is that the fall in the share price of Apple is a good opportunity to buy it. Apple is an innovative company and will continue to do so. Everyone initially predicted that the cost of the iPhone X would under perform the iPhone 8 and would eat into the profits of Apple. Analysts more often than not get their calls wrong. Does it really matter if a company distributes less dividend than analysts expected? The important thing is that Apple is a good company. I read an interesting astrological article on the numerology analysis of certain tech companies. I am not a great believer in astrology or horoscopes. I do consider that there is a certain amount of science in numbers. It does not matter whether it appears as numerology or the significance of numbers in various religious texts. This post on the thirteen tribes of Israel is extremely good. There is a logic in Shmita. Apple will always be an attractive company to buy into. Buying it when the share price is down is a bigger bonus.
Filed under Apple, Business, Christianity, Cricket, ETF, Healthcare, Indices, Investments, Islam, Leaders, Market Outlook, Market Timing, religion, Test matches
(Originally posted on 27th April 2010)
I wonder if it is a coincidence that I am writing another post related to religion. Any cataclysmic event will have an effect on a person’s psyche. On the surface, I do not think I have become more religious. However, there may have been a subconscious change.
My fascination with indices and especially those that have an alternate view should be apparent by now. So the launch of Europe’s first Christian Equity Index has caught my eye.
First, there must be a legitimate reason for launching an index. The reason for this is that there is an apparent demand by investors for so-called ethical stocks. First, the companies are drawn from the Stoxx Europe 600 Index. Second, they should derive their revenues from sources that are not against the values of Christianity as defined by a committee are only included.
Therein lies the first problem. The companies will be based on the interpretation of Christianity as set by people. Companies that have birth control are not included. This is an obvious reflection of the fact that members of the Vatican are present in the committee. Secondly, I refuse to believe that each and every company that will be listed there has not made any profit from non-Christian principled companies.
Thirdly is there a need for such an index? Shariah indices, for the most part, should act similar and contain the same underlying as a Christian index. Off the top of my head, I would say alcohol companies and the way interest is treated would differ.
I have stated earlier that the futures or stock market can reflect how well the country may perform in sports. Going by this philosophy then if this Christian index outperforms the European index and a shariah index then does that mean that Christian values are better than those of a secular world or Islam?
According to me, actions do not mean anything. What matters are your beliefs? In my mind, a Christian company is one that is led by people who have accepted Christ as their personal Saviour. If Christians are looking to invest in ethical companies then this should be the starting point. Everything else will flow.
I want to start a project of writing Psalms. This is my first attempt. I would love to get some thoughts and comments on this
I bury my head in my hands to quell tears from my eyes.
They flow like a river starting at its very source.
The priests they dress in their mighty finery.
The sadducees mock me aplenty.
When will you hear my cry?
When will my enemies be slain?
Protect me my merciful God.
Save me from those who seek me harm.
May they perish into darkness,
May their souls wander between worlds.
May their children know no peace,
May their childrens children walk baren in the desert.
Save me my Lord.
Save your humble servant.
I prostrate myself before thee.
For only you are holy.
People that I have known have died. However the news of the death of David has shaken me to the core. I broke down in tears yesterday. This is something I have never done before. There seems to be a void left in my very soul. I have heard sermons where people have preached about having a hole which only God can fill. However how can you fill space left by a good man? I have known David for a couple of years. However he is one of the few people I count as my friend. He was a gem of a person. His fiancée is also a wonderful person. We were looking forward to them getting married in January because both of them deserved happiness and each other after the hardships they went through. If and when we had children then they would have been perfect God parents. David had this wonderful ability to connect with kids at their level. A few minutes later he would be talking to adults about Dostoevsky and classical music. He was passionate. I sincerely wish that I had known him longer. We will treasure the time and meals shared. They will be ingrained in my memory for as long as my mind lasts.
I recently decided to take part in NaNoWriMo. He was one of the reasons I decided to take part. He provided the spark of life to characters until then existed only in my head. A nice conversation that I had with him as we took a bus from church was all that was needed. I do not know if I will be successful in NaNoWriMo or not. However I do hope I can complete my novel. I think David would like that. I pray that he has found peace and I hope his family will have the strength to go through this loss. Goodbye David. Goodbye my friend.
I came across a beautiful poem by Sneha called Curse to you. It moved me and resonated to me like no poem has ever done in a long time. The rawness of the emotions is just brilliant. I felt guilty initially that I loved it. I felt guilty that there are at least 50 people that I want to send this poem too. I questioned whether I am a good Christian. After all did not Jesus say to turn the other cheek? Everyday when I say the Lord’s pray I sincerely pray that I will be able to forgive those that sin against me. I am reminded of the Psalms. The Psalms is more than a book of poetry. Psalm 69 is a cry for help. Even more it is brutal in the way the curses are made. There is hope in both these poems. Those that vindicate will be brutally punished.
Filed under Poetry, Prayer
Lately I have been trying to reconcile various aspects of my faith. I have been following two different daily readings and prayers. I have found that one focuses more on the personal and the other on the community of Christians. We had a prayer 24+ in our church. We had 30 hours of continuous prayer. That provided a nice impetus for me to start praying daily. I have come to realise the benefits of prayer. It calms me. The more I pray the more I realise that I end up praying for others more than I do for myself.
I have come to realise that it is better to be a good Christian than a good follower of a denomination. To become a Christian you have to believe that you have sinned and Christ died to save you from your sins. You also should be baptised at some point in your life based on your conviction. Everything else is doctrinal or theological beliefs.
In this world there are only four people that I would ask to pray. I believe that they pray in sincerity. They pray faithfully. They have the gift of prayer. I believe that through their prayers God will do what is best for me even if it means that my prayers are not answered in the way that I hoped. They are special people. I have learnt a lot from their life. Each one of them have a different method and style of praying.
I have found myself asking them to pray for me. The more I contemplated and the more I prayed the more I found that I felt comfortable in praying Novenas. The basis of my faith is rock solid. Anything above that is doctrinal and theological. To me there is no difference in asking a friend of mine to pray for me and going to him and giving him a gift and saying a Novena and then going to a church dedicated to that saint and giving an offertory. The only sign of life is change. I like examining my beliefs from time to time. It is only then that I can know where I stand in my faith.