Friday, October 23, 2009

Profound Reminder

I received this from a friend and thought I'd pass it along.

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Technical Frustration

To all you lovers of computers and processing applications, I implore your knowledge, wisdom and service.

I've created a Microsoft Excel spreadsheet survey and have emailed it to several people; however, not all have Excel available for opening the said application.

So, my question is this ----does anyone know how to convert an Excel file to a fillable PDF (for free---most sights require fee)? Or to save an Excel file so that anyone can open it as an attachment without actually having Excel as one of their program files, and still be able to fill out the form?

Someone suggested exporting it into a PDF, but when I opened Microsoft Excel I was unable to find anything that would allow me to export it.

I was able to "save as" a webpage, however, from what I can tell it's not a fillable form in this format.

I'm just trying to figure out a way to get this survey to a mass of people without inconvenience them in anyway to fill it out and return it.

Any assistance would be greatly appreciate.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Is Religion the Answer?

We have been so busy this last month and October is looking about the same, but alhamdullilah it's all good.

I read something interesting the other day and thought I'd share. It's rather lengthy just so you have fair warning. ;-)

Is Religion the Answer?

Religion is both the savior and bane of mankind. How many millions have been comforted by organized religion over the ages, and how many millions have been killed, tortured, raped and plundered over these same ages? How many religions have not been persecuted? The answer is none. All religions have been persecuted at some point in their histories, and that continues to this day. In the modern "civilization," we still have not learned to love and tolerate one another. We have all the problems of economy, racism, ethnic purging, discrimination, hunger, poverty, politics, power, greed, terrorism, and on and one....seemingly endless it goes. Isn't this world wonderful? No wonder we're all depressed and tired--we hear about and experience these problems every day. It has got to stop, or the generations that follow us will have nothing.

We must start with organized religion, for it's both part of the problem and the key to the salvation of the world. The major religions of the world have got to band together and not only preach but practice religious tolerance.

Islam, the fastest-growing religion in the world today, has got to go back to its roots of religious tolerance (it is one of the most tolerant of religions) and oust the extremists who practice terrorism in the name of holy Jihad (holy war) on the "infidels" of other religions or countries. Most of the message from Mohammed was Christlike, teaching love and tolerance for others...his teachings have been warped by extremists and conservative clerics who lust for power and greed at any cost of human life. Most Muslims are very devout and loving people who treat others with respect and kindness; but extremists are grabbing the headlines and perpetuating their wars against Israel, India, Europe and the United States by playing on the emotions of the followers of Islam in their self-proclaimed "holy war".

Peace will never be obtained through terrorism, for it is the method of despicable evil. Peace can only be obtained through tolerance and negotiation in which both sides bend and compromise. Gone is the day when military might could conquer and bring a forced peace---the world might not sand for any country conquering and taking over another (the United States included). Yew, we still have places such as Iraq and Afghanistan that were subdued by military might, but he outrage of the world was heard, and these countries are being given back to the people that inhabit them. The world of Islam must go back to its messenger and practice what he brought forth in love and tolerance to climb that mountain of self.

Christianity also has some major problems that it must face. The Catholic Church has many internal problems that hurt others, and it's on the wane because it's slow to change and make compromises. It has lost the respect of many for its many internal scandals and failure to acknowledge its mistakes both in the past and present. It has trapped itself in its own unbendable traditions and become stagnant, and certainly makes less of an impact on the world today. It must make wholesale changes or it will go down, as so many inflexible dynasties have, and not the powerful voice it once was.

The Protestant movement is also becoming more inflexible and conservative, with its right-wing politics creating myriad problems in the forms of bigotry, intolerance, and its propensity to try to gain power in the political arena. What's the old adage--religion and politics don't mix well? Christianity is one of the least tolerant toward other religions, which makes the task of bonding with other worldwide religions, in order to accomplish an overall good for the world, seem near to impossible, but it must be done.

Christianity today has become warped in many areas, namely that of preaching and practicing the worship of an all-loving and merciful God. Many churches concentrate more on the "hellfire and brimstone" approach to the battling evil, invoking the fear of God and His wrath on those who "sin" or constantly using the Bible to rule their congregations by fear. It seems like a complete contradiction to me, as Christ always preached about an all-loving and merciful God. Some of these so-called Christian churches use the Bible so much that they ought to be named "Bible worshipers" instead of "worshipers of Christ."

If Christ was to come down to the world today, I doubt he'd proclaim himself a Christian. Christianity need to practice more religious tolerance, get out of the political arena, and really put forth the concept of an all-loving and merciful God--rather than a wrathful, vengeful God Who has all the imperfect emotions of mankind. In order for Christianity to take its place in saving this world, they have got to leave their hidden agendas of politics and getting wealth behind and put forth the agenda of Christ. They have got to climb that mountain of ego that has been built up with their wealth and power and get down to helping others in the way that Christ would have matter what their ethnic, racial, religious, or sexual background may be.

If you want people to be part of your religion, do it with the truth and love of God, not with your own self-righteous agendas. Concentrate more on the joy, truth, and love of God, not your own human-made truth.....for you should at least be able to recognize that you may be wrong. Christianity has always been ruled by fear and money: the fear of being wrong and the money to build more churches (to get even more money). Its bloody history and its intolerance toward other faiths and beliefs proves this to be true. The Christian motto seems to be: If you're threatened in your faith, for God's sake don't tolerate the right of others to believe otherwise. Instead, just destroy them, whether it be from the pulpit, in the political arena, with propaganda, or the sword.

I know I'm on a soapbox, and I know I'm being tough and harsh in my criticism of some of these major religions, but damn it, someone has got to speak up. The religions of this world have to band together to help the planet, not tear it apart and asunder with their own agendas. I know that there are millions out there who aren't being helped by the faith they're now following, and I know that there are millions out there who have left their faith because it didn't give them the truth and comfort they were seeking. It's such a tragedy that the major religions of this world have messed up the simple act of worshiping God. God created us all in our many different colors and ethnic backgrounds, and He even sent messengers to help us find the way to His all-loving, merciful, and perfect Self. We turn around and disregard or warp all that and make war and commit atrocities on each other. It is the tragedy of tragedies. ---Author Anonymous