Monday, February 27, 2006

Ooo, me Brain!

psy·chol·o·gy {si-kol'e-jee} n. pl. psy·chol·o·gies

1. The science that deals with mental processes and behavior.

2. The emotional and behavioral characteristics of an individual, group, or
activity: the psychology of war.

3. Subtle tactical action or argument used to manipulate or influence
another: He used poor psychology on his employer when trying to make the point.

4. Philosophy. The branch of metaphysics that studies the
soul, the mind, and the relationship of life and mind to the functions of the
body.


And I'll be learning all of them!

I just had my first day at Uni doing Psych and it's looking good.

I'll be (1) learning how brains work and how neurological pathways do their thing (or don't do it, depending).

I'll be (2) learning why we behave the way we do (all the way down to first principles in animals) as an individual and in a group.

I'll be (3) learning how influence works, and how we create and manage impressions of ourselves in others' minds.

And when I take all this knowledge back with me to do my Theology Masters, then I'll be (4) amalgamating psychology and theology to help us better relate to God, each other, and ourself.

Wednesday, February 22, 2006

The Beauty of Creation



The sky might display God's glory, but how about the Night Sky?

I find the calm serenity of the universe - daubed by the soft paintbrush of nebulous gasses and shining with the light of millions of stars - to be as beautiful as any green, mountaintop vista on earth. We don't even need to travel to see this view. We just need to go outside at night and stare upward into the inky blackness.

To me, there is something magical about the fact that this beauty is so quiet and slow-changing, not like our season-swept earth. Take the above picture of the Horse-Head Nebula, for example, where this nebula only happens to be shaped like the head of a horse right now. It only happens to have been sculpted like this by stellar winds and radiation, but it will stay in this anthromorphically interesting shape for many more years to come.

Imagine the beauty that we might find in the smoke from a burning fire if it moved as slowly.

This NASA Website will provide an astrology photo each day. There is also an archive of their previous photos.

Monday, February 20, 2006

S'me!

[BREAKING UPDATE: For those of you who know my friend Dave G from New Lynn, AKL, he is having an Operation tomorrow and would appreciate prayer. Retroactive prayers still appreciated, I'm sure (I believe Dave's god-paradigm allows for retroactive prayer-granting)]

Hello!

It's a post!

Awesome, lets get into it. No time like the present...

So 2006 is going to be a big year. I've been having a summer of fun with my girlfriend, Charlotte. Things have been going well generally, save a few slight hiccups in my homelife just recently.

However studies have fallen into place for this big year of much studious efforts.

My five year plan is something like this...

Finish my "secular" degree: a BSc now majoring in Psychology!
Finish my "sacred" degree: a BMin or possibly a DipGrad depending on ease of completion.
Bridge to Masters of Thelogical Studies and upgrade quickly to Masters of Theology.
Start my PhD either fulltime (if I can't find any Church or Academic-teaching type jobs) or work and do it part time while I be a Minister or a Lecturer (or both).

So it's a big year for me since I'll be tackling my BSc again, but this time my major will be Psych instead of CompSci!! Yes, in keeping with my people-personality this degree should prove useful to both my career and my upcoming Bible College research. Michelle Burstall from the Psych department was extremely helpful and ended up providing me with everything I need to complete my BSc in two semesters. So Convocation Ceremony here I come! (finally!)

It will feel really good to complete both my Auckland Uni and my BCNZ degrees, and it will make my none-too-limited loan worthwhile.

Next episode: Stay tuned for more exciting news as Iain investigate the Anglicans!