Friday, September 21, 2007

Back in California

for a couple of days... I've decided to return to Boston after the weekend to finish packing and shipping things out, rather than waiting a couple of months. Shipping went well this week, and so I decided to wrap it up as soon as possible. (Especially before the USPS decides to increase rates again.) Tomorrow we are having a lunch banquet for the second niece--a red egg party. Tonight KK and her husband are taking me to BJ's to sample some beer. I don't think there will be any Chimay there. After I arrived at the airport, I met my mother there, since she was on her way back from SLO, and we headed to Palace BBQ for lunch. (Originally I had a craving for Indian buffet, but my mother doesn't really like Indian food...) Well.. Palace BBQ was ok, but I think I won't be going there again any time soon.

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Varia, 20 September 2007

Children from a preschool etiquette class play at Unhyun Palace in Jongno-gu, Seoul on Thursday./Newsis

The Two Transitions of Baek Ji-young

A Guide to the Chuseok Ancestral Memorial Service The ancestral memorial service is the central event of Chuseok, Korea’s most important holiday. It’s a complex affair, and many Koreans are unsure about the principles for setting out the Chuseok ritual table or the procedure for the service and just follow what others do. Here, the Chosun Ilbo explains the correct procedure in easy-to-follow steps. >>Full Text

Yoga for Chuseok With Chuseok, the traditional Korean Thanksgiving holiday, comes nationwide migration and gridlock on the country’s highways. Singer Ok Ju-hyun has just released her second exercise video, which may help people to withstand a long journey. Here, she recommends seven yoga poses which are especially useful for the Chuseok holidays. >>Full Text


Korean Minjok Leadership Academy

main page; page with some photos of their school uniform (modern hanboks), another, courtesy of Korean Catholic responding to the Western Confucian's post about adopting hanboks


I'd like to know if the students read any of the Confucian classics, or anything by the Neo-Confucians... or if there is any sort of religious affiliation for the school (it appears not).

The Kingdom... that's it?

You can find the ending of the movie here... this is the great political message of the movie? That's a bit disappointing. There is irrational hatred of the enemey on both sides? (And is the response of the Americans really irrational? After all, their friend and countrymen have just been killed, and it's not clear that what the character is advocating is indiscriminate killing of all Saudis, rather just those who are guilty. A desire for vengeance--now maybe both sides perceive that injustice has been done to them by the other side, but I don't think this is explained as being part of the terrorists' motivation in the movie.) It seems that there isn't any deeper inquiry into the differences between both sides (cultural, ideological, religious)? Sounds like it doesn't do as good a job as Syriana. Or perhaps we are reminded of all of this at the beginning of the movie, when it gives a quick overview of the relationship between the U.S. and Saudi Arabia. Will I still see the movie? I'm not sure.

It reminds me of Stephen Lang's portray of Stonewall Jackson in Gods and Generals--in one moment he will be praying to God and in the next he will be telling his adjutant that the proper response to the Yankee invaders is, "Kill them all." An Interview with Stephen Lang: Bringing Stonewall ...

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Iron Man trailer

IGN; Apple

I was thinking the CGI might be better than Fantastic Four, but it doesn't look like it is. And Robert Downey, Jr. as Tony Stark... hmmm. I guess I am used to the cartoon voice, Robert Downey, Jr. doesn't seem 'manly' enough. Though he undoubtedly can play the part of Tony Stark with issues.

History of the Dominican Liturgy, 1946-1969. Part III: Post-Conciliar Accomodations

The last part of Fr. Thompson's history of the Dominican liturgy




何日君再來 (sung by 李香蘭)

何日君再來 (sung by 山口淑子)

By... Judy Ong?



Close Quarters Battle (CQB) Live Fire

"We're It"

With stills taken from the movie Black Hawk Down.

Debates about culture and quality cannot be won

Because they are not purely intellectual--appetite either strengthens correct judgment, or it distorts it.

See this for an example: The Canon Wars

Subprime lending to trigger world’s worst financial crisis since 1929

Subprime lending to trigger world’s worst financial crisis since 1929

It is odd that AsiaNews would publish something like this; the first part is ok, but then there is this:

Amero, North America’s new currency

With a bank crisis looming on the horizon, an odd piece of information is becoming news. As unlikely as it may seem, the United States along with Canada and Mexico, appears to be getting ready to launch a new single currency: the Amero.

With the monetary bubble on the verge of bursting, one solution would be getting rid of the dollar, replaced by a currency, the Amero, to serve a would-be North American Union.

In addition to the United States, Mexico should join such a union and in principle might be even in favour of it. Canada, too, might join, setting aside its aversion to losing its monetary sovereignty, out of concern that its equity in US dollars might simply lose its value.

When US President George W. Bush met then Mexican President Vicente Fox and then Canadian Prime Minister Paul Martin in Waco, Texas, in March 2005, they discussed a North American union.

The idea resurfaced the same year in a report released by the powerful US Council on Foreign Relations, a group that has influenced most US presidents, both Democrat and Republican, and a tri-national task force involving ministerial-level officials.

Wikipedia already sports a page dedicated to the Amero with the photos of prototypes.

A news report on the Amero broadcast on CNBC is also available on Youtube [3].

Similarly, 20 Amero coins can be seen on the Hal Turner Show webpage, with a small D visible, D as in ‘minted in Denver.’ Curiously, the Denver Mint is currently closed to the public, ostensibly for restoration work, till September 28 [4].

Whilst AsiaNews is unable to determine whether there is any basis to such claims, it does seem certain that a plan for a North American union is being developed [5].

Such an entity would have a population almost the size of the European Union, and could adequately respond to the current bank crisis that is bound to end up in a monetary crisis.

However, far from being a simple monetary union, the operation is likely to mean a de facto US annexation of the rest of North America.

For Asia the real point of interest would be economic rather than political since the Americas have been the United States’ backyard for a long time.

Firstly, the Amero would be definitely weaker than the US dollar because it would include the Mexican pesos, which was insolvent not so long ago.

A weaker North American common currency would quickly push the value of the currencies of China and the whole of Asia, which have hitherto been reluctant to do so.

Secondly, converting dollars used outside the United States would raise problems since in Asia as well as in many countries around the world payments in dollars are more common than one might think. In this case the impact of a North American union would also be very significant.

Pope: “well prepared married couples close the door to divorce ”

Pope: “well prepared married couples close the door to divorce ”
During his audience address, revoking the figure of St. John Chrysostom, Benedict XVI recalls the “sedition of Antioch” against taxes and comments : “you can see that some things never change in the course of history”.

Vatican City (AsiaNews) – “Well prepared married couples close the door to divorce”: this urges the necessity of a Christian formation from early childhood. It is also the “most current” lesson of “the authentic presence of Christian lay faithful in families and in society” which comes from St John Chrysostom and which Benedict XVI indicated to the 20 thousand people present at the general audience.

The figure of the great IV century bishop, St John of Antioch, also known as Chrysostom, mouth of gold, for his rhetoric capacity which makes him the “greates orator of all times” also gave the Pope food for an aside, when tracing the life of the saint he recalled the Antioch Sedition of 387, “when the people tore down the imperial statues to protest rising taxes”. “We can see that some things never change over the course of time”.

Born in 349 in Antioch, modern day Southern Turkey, St John Chrysostom – the first phase of whose life the Pope discussed today – became the Bishop of Constantinople after a period spent as a hermit. He was exiled twice in 403 and 407. He was among the most prolific fathers of the Church, counting over 700 homilies, 241 letters and many other writings, thus “we can say he is still alive today through his many works”.

His was a pastoral theology, based on preaching “which aims to develop the intellect of the faithful to understand and live the faith”, in so far as “the value of a man lies in his consciousness of the truth and rectitude of life”, “the conscience must be translated into life”.

In this logic of understanding and translating into practise the moral and spiritual exigencies of the faith to arrive at an integral development of the person, the great orator underlined the importance of Christian education from early childhood, a phase in which the consciousness of good and evil is introduced. This is why “God’s laws must be impressed as if on a wax tablet”. The formation must follow on in adolescence and marriage. In the family, which St John Chrysostom defined “the small domestic Church”, “well prepared married couplet close the door to divorce”.

And from the family it follows on that each one of us “is in some way responsible for the salvation of the other, this is the principal of our social life: not being only self-interested”.

Papal Homily in Loreto

Papal Homily in Loreto
"Jesus Has a Fondness for Young People"

VATICAN CITY, SEPT. 18, 2007 ( Here is a Vatican translation of Benedict XVI's Sept. 2 homily at the Mass celebrated with youth in Loreto, Italy.

* * *


Plain of Montorso
Sunday, 2 September 2007

After last night's Vigil, our Meeting in Loreto is now coming to an end around the altar with the solemn Eucharistic celebration. Once again, my most cordial greeting to you all. I extend a special greeting to the Bishops and I thank Archbishop Angelo Bagnasco who has expressed your common sentiments. I greet the Archbishop of Loreto who has welcomed us with affection and kindness. I greet the priests, the men and women religious and all those who have carefully prepared this important event of faith. I offer a respectful greeting to the Civil and Military Authorities present, with a particular remembrance for Hon. Mr Francesco Rutelli, Vice-President of the Council of Ministers.

This is truly a day of grace! The Readings we have just heard help us to understand the marvellous work the Lord has done in bringing so many of us here to Loreto, to meet in a joyful atmosphere of prayer and festivity. In a certain sense, our gathering at the Virgin's Shrine fulfils the words of the Letter to the Hebrews: "You have come to Mount Zion and to the city of the living God". Celebrating the Eucharist in the shadow of the Holy House, we too come to the "festal gathering, and to the assembly of the first-born who are enrolled in heaven". Thus, we can experience the joy of having come "to a judge who is God of all, and to the spirits of just men made perfect". With Mary, Mother of the Redeemer and our Mother, let us above all go to meet "the Mediator of a New Covenant", Our Lord Jesus Christ (cf. Heb 12:22-24). The Heavenly Father, who in many and various ways spoke to our fathers (cf. Heb 1:1), offering his Covenant and often encountering resistance and rejection, desired in the fullness of time to make a new, definitive and irrevocable agreement with human beings, sealing it with the Blood of his Only-Begotten Son, who died and rose for the salvation of all humanity. Jesus Christ, God made man, took on our own flesh in Mary, participated in our life and chose to share in our history. To realize his Covenant God sought a young heart and he found it in Mary, "a young woman".

God also seeks young people today. He seeks young people with great hearts who can make room for him in their lives to be protagonists of the New Covenant. To accept a proposal as fascinating as the one Jesus offers us, to make the covenant with him, it is necessary to be youthful within, to be capable of letting oneself be called into question by his newness, to set out with him on new roads. Jesus has a fondness for young people, as the conversation with the rich young man clearly shows (cf. Mt 19:16-22; Mk 10:17-22); he respects their freedom but never tires of proposing loftier goals for life to them: the newness of the Gospel and the beauty of holy behaviour. Following her Lord's example, the Church continues to show the same attention. This is why, dear young people, she looks at you with immense affection, she is close to you in moments of joy and festivity, in trials and in loss. She sustains you with the gifts of sacramental grace and accompanies you in the discernment of your vocation. Dear young people, let yourselves be involved in the new life that flows from the encounter with Christ and you will be able to be apostles of his peace in your families, among your friends, within your Ecclesial Communities and in the various milieus in which you live and work.

But what is it that makes people "young" in the Gospel sense? Our Meeting, which is taking place in the shadow of a Marian Shrine, invites us to look to Our Lady. Let us therefore ask ourselves: How did Mary spend her youth? Why was it that in her the impossible became possible? She herself reveals it to us in the Canticle of the Magnificat. God "regarded the low estate of his handmaiden" (Lk 1:48a). It was Mary's humility that God appreciated more than anything else in her. And it is precisely of humility that the other two Readings of today's liturgy speak to us. Is it not a happy coincidence that this message is addressed to us exactly here in Loreto? Here, we think spontaneously of the Holy House of Nazareth, which is the Shrine of humility: the humility of God who took flesh, who made himself small, and the humility of Mary who welcomed him into her womb; the humility of the Creator and the humility of the creature. Jesus, Son of God and Son of man, was born from this encounter of humility. "The greater you are, the more you humble yourself, so you will find favour in the sight of the Lord. For great is the might of the Lord" (3:18-20) says the passage in Sirach; and in the Gospel, after the Parable of the Wedding Feast, Jesus concludes: "Every one who exalts himself will be humbled, and he who humbles himself will be exalted" (Lk 14:11). Today, this perspective mentioned in the Scriptures appears especially provocative to the culture and sensitivity of contemporary man. The humble person is perceived as someone who gives up, someone defeated, someone who has nothing to say to the world. Instead, this is the principal way, and not only because humility is a great human virtue but because, in the first place, it represents God's own way of acting. It was the way chosen by Christ, the Mediator of the New Covenant, who "being found in human form he humbled himself and became obedient unto death, even death on a cross" (Phil 2:8).

Dear young people, I seem to perceive in these words of God about humility an important message which is especially current for you who want to follow Christ and belong to his Church. This is the message: do not follow the way of pride but rather that of humility. Go against the tide: do not listen to the interested and persuasive voices that today are peddling on many sides models of life marked by arrogance and violence, by oppression and success at any cost, by appearances and by having at the expense of being. How many messages, which reach you especially through the mass media, are targeting you! Be alert! Be critical! Do not follow the wave produced by this powerful, persuasive action. Do not be afraid, dear friends, to prefer the "alternative" routes pointed out by true love: a modest and sound lifestyle; sincere and pure emotional relationships; honest commitment in studies and work; deep concern for the common good. Do not be afraid of seeming different and being criticized for what might seem to be losing or out of fashion; your peers but adults too, especially those who seem more distant from the mindset and values of the Gospel, are crying out to see someone who dares to live according to the fullness of humanity revealed by Jesus Christ.

Therefore, dear friends, the way of humility is not the way of renunciation but that of courage. It is not the result of a defeat but the result of a victory of love over selfishness and of grace over sin. In following Christ and imitating Mary, we must have the courage of humility; we must entrust ourselves humbly to the Lord, because only in this way will we be able to become docile instruments in his hands and allow him to do great things in us. The Lord worked great miracles in Mary and in the Saints! I am thinking, for example, of Francis of Assisi and Catherine of Siena, Patrons of Italy. I am thinking also of splendid young people like St Gemma Galgani, St Gabriel of the Sorrowful Virgin, St Louis Gonzaga, St Dominic Savio, St Maria Goretti, born not far from here, and the Blesseds, Piergiorgio Frassati and Alberto Marvelli. And I am also thinking of numerous young men and women who belong to the ranks of the "anonymous" Saints, but who are not anonymous to God. For him, every individual person is unique, with his or her own name and face. All, and you know it, are called to be Saints!

As you see, dear young people, the humility the Lord has taught us and to which the Saints have borne witness, each according to the originality of his or her own vocation, is quite different from a renunciatory way of life. Let us look above all at Mary. At her school, we too, like her, can experience that "yes" of God to humanity from which flow all the "yeses" of our life. It is true, the challenges you must face are many and important. The first however, is always that of following Christ to the very end without reservations and compromises. And following Christ means feeling oneself a living part of his body which is the Church. One cannot call oneself a disciple of Jesus if one does not love and obey his Church. The Church is our family in which love for the Lord and for our brothers and sisters, especially through participation in the Eucharist, enables us to experience the joy of already having a foretaste, now, of the future life that will be totally illuminated by Love. May our daily commitment be to live here below as though we were already in Heaven above.

Thus, feeling oneself as Church is a vocation to holiness for all; it is a daily commitment to build communion and unity, overcoming all resistance and rising above every incomprehension. In the Church we learn to love, teaching ourselves to accept our neighbour freely, to show caring attention to those in difficulty, to the poor and to the lowliest. The fundamental motivation that unites believers in Christ is not success but goodness, a goodness that is all the more authentic the more it is shared, and which does not primarily consist in having or in being powerful, but in being. In this way one builds the city of God with human beings, a city which at the same time grows on earth and comes down from Heaven because it develops in the encounter and collaboration between people and God (cf. Rv 21:2-3).

Following Christ, dear young people, also entails the constant effort to make one's own contribution to building a society that is more just and sober and in which all may enjoy the goods of the earth.
I know that many of you are generously dedicated to witnessing to your faith in the various social environments, active as volunteers and working to promote the common good, peace and justice in every community. There is no doubt that one of the fields in which it seems urgent to take action is that of safeguarding creation. The future of the planet is entrusted to the new generations, in which there are evident signs of a development that has not always been able to protect the delicate balances of nature. Before it is too late, it is necessary to make courageous decisions that can recreate a strong alliance between humankind and the earth. A decisive "yes" is needed to protect creation and also a strong commitment to invert those trends which risk leading to irreversibly degrading situations. I therefore appreciated the Italian Church's initiative to encourage sensitivity to the problems of safeguarding creation by establishing a National Day, which occurs precisely on 1 September. This year attention is focused above all on water, a very precious good which, if it is not shared fairly and peacefully, will unfortunately become a cause of harsh tensions and bitter conflicts.

Dear young friends, after listening to your reflections yesterday evening and last night, letting myself be guided by God's Word, I now want to entrust to you my considerations which are intended as a paternal encouragement to follow Christ in order to be witnesses of his hope and love. For my part, I will continue to be beside you with my prayers and affection, so that you may persevere enthusiastically on the journey of the Agora, this unique triennial journey of listening, dialogue and mission. Today, concluding the first year with this wonderful Meeting, I cannot fail to invite you to look ahead already to the great event of World Youth Day that will be held in July next year in Sydney. I ask you to prepare yourselves for this important manifestation of youthful faith by meditating on the Message which examines in depth the theme of the Holy Spirit, to live together a new springtime of the Spirit. Therefore, I am expecting many of you even in Australia, at the end of your second year of the Agora. Lastly, let us turn our gaze, our eyes, once again to Mary, model of humility and courage. Virgin of Nazareth, help us to be docile to the work of the Holy Spirit, as you were; help us to become ever more holy, disciples in love with your Son Jesus; sustain and guide these young people so that they may be joyful and tireless missionaries of the Gospel among their peers in every corner of Italy. Amen!

© Copyright 2007 -- Libreria Editrice Vaticana

Gary North doesn't like the new 3:10 to Yuma either


Goo Hye Sun vids

She has a good, clean look, and she's starring in a period drama. Thumbs up!

Goo Hye Sun song


Love Song(Pure 19 Drama OST)sung by Goo Hye-sun

Jo In Sung & Goo Hye Sun - Tous Les Jours CF

1st episode, lip mark

Tous Les Jours cf - fresh episode 2 "cakes story"

Tous Les Jours - Fresh Episode Making

Tous Les Jours - 'lips mark' NG

Goo Hye-sun (Cheoeumcheoreom Ad)

[CF] elgaa cf

Ku Hye-sun & Sung Si-kyung MV(2002)-우린 제법 잘 어울려요

Ku Hye Sun - Photo Story(tribute)

Kim Ji Eun (YG new face) - 어제와 다른 오늘 MV

alt: Kim Ji Eun - Yesterday Different From Today (어제와 다른 오늘) MV

KIM JI EUN radio cut

Kim Ji Eun Self Interview

Kim Ji Eun - I Will Always Love You 06.19.07

Kim Jieun 06.19.07 sbs radio

Kim Ji Eun - Yesterday's Different From Today - Music Core

Ji Eun - Nobody's Suppose to be Here (Radio Perf)

Ji Eun - Love (Radio Perf)

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Monday, September 17, 2007

Cardinal Erdo: Parish Is Priority for Evangelization

Cardinal: Parish Is Priority for Evangelization
Budapest Hosts 5th International Congress

BUDAPEST, Hungary, SEPT. 16, 2007 ( The first step for evangelizing Budapest is deepening the faith and missionary zeal of those who work in parishes, said the city's archbishop.

Cardinal Peter Erdo, archbishop of Esztergom-Budapest and primate of Hungary, told ZENIT about the steps needed to spread the faith, as the International Congress for the New Evangelization begins in his city today.

Cardinal Camillo Ruini, vicar of the Diocese of Rome, will represent Benedict XVI at the conference.

Cardinal Erdo said: "In Budapest we saw that what was needed first of all was to deepen the faith, spirituality and missionary awareness of those who are already working in the parishes, that is, priests, religious, catechists and laypeople, those who are completely dedicated to parish service.

"Then in a second step we must get in contact with the whole parish community, also in a liturgical way.

"The third step is a gradual opening to the world. This opening up to the world is not just directed toward our immediate environment, our city, the quarter where we live and where many do not believe and do not know Christ’s message or have not been baptized; it is also a look at the whole world, the most distant continents, through the witness of those people -- priests, religious, missionaries and laity -- who have lived in those parts of the world."

This year's evangelization conference, which runs through Saturday, is the fifth in a series of like conferences hosted since 2003 in major European cities.

Father Miklos Blanckenstein, pastoral vicar of the Archdiocese of Esztergom-Budapest and rector of the archiepiscopal seminary of Esztergom, told ZENIT that during the preparation of the event "the communities and movements tasted the fruit and the joy of working together."

"Many priests recognized the help they receive from the laity and many laity recognized that priests are needed, but that each must find his vocation within a well-developed community," he added.

The first of these evangelization conferences was held in Vienna in 2003. In 2005, 2006 and 2007, they were held in Paris, Lisbon and Brussels.

The conferences were born from the celebrations of the Jubilee in the year 2000, a desire of Pope John Paul II.

Akiko Kobayashi - Koi ni Ochite - Fall in Love - 小林明子 恋におちて

Elisa Chan and Leslie Cheung - Fall in Love - 陳潔靈 張國榮 誰令你心痴

"Elisa Chan's 1986 duet with Leslie Cheung - a cover of Akiko Kobayashi's Koi ni Ochite - Fall in Love. (more) ."

Leslie Cheung concert 1997-月亮代表我的心


Hrm, one from Andy Lau too: Andy Lau - 月亮代表我的心

One done by an amateur?

Paul Gottfried on disentangling ourselves from Iraq

A Response to Justin Raimondo

(See also his review of The Politically Incorrect Guide to the Constitution.)

Period dramas out now

Two of interest... the third, the one with Bae Yong Jun... I'm not so interested in that one. (I think his look is too feminine.)

The King and I: official website

King and I (2007) - Main trailer

King and I (2007) - Opening theme

"The King and I" Official Promo

King and I (2007) - OST (The theme of Cheo-seon)


[Preview] SBS The king and I [Part 1]

[Preview] SBS The king and I [Part 2]

Goo Hye Sun & Lee Jin - The King and I (Sketch)

Yi San thread at soompi; official website. Yi San is projected to run 60 episodes? Aiya.behind the scenes photos; wallpaper; VOD sketch; cast

Yi San 李祘 (2007) - Trailer
"MBC 사극 "이산(李祘, 2007)" 예고편
Korean historical drama "Yi San (a.k.a. King Jeong-jo, the Great)" (2007, MBC) Trailer

Prince Yi San : I am the crown prince you should kill.
King Young-jo : You're good-for-nothing!
Queen Jeong-soon : Are you trying to kill the crown prince, your majesty?
King Young-jo : Prove that you are a king worthy of the throne!
Prince Yi San : I dreamed of the kids I met that night.
Song-yeon : Your highness, It's me. Song-yeon. Don't forget us. Don't...

Set in the late 18th century, this TV series evolve the tale of Prince Yi San(李祘)'s life full of ups and downs. Yi San's mentally ill father (Crown prince Sado, 思悼世子) was forced to commit suicide by King Young-jo(英祖大王, 1694~1776, Yi San's grandfather), and Yi San himself suffered assassination all his life. But his name is remained as one of the greatest monarch in the Korean history : King Jeong-jo, the Great (正祖大王, 1752~1800).

Starring Lee Seo-jin(Damo / 茶母), Han Ji-min(The Great Jang-geum / Jewel in the Palace / 大長今), Lee Soon-jae etc.

Directed by Lee Byeong-hoon (The Great Jang-geum/ Jewel in the Palace (大長今), Heo Jun(許浚), Sangdo(商道), The Ballad of Seodong(薯童謠)) (more) "

Yi San (이산) - Press Conference


Lee Seo Jin - Lee San/Yi San/I San Interview & Preview

Lee Seo Jin - Lee San/Yi San/I San Preview

[Clip] MBC Yi San Preview Part 1; part 2

Lee Seo Jin - Lee San Press Conference

Lee Seo Jin - Section TV 09.14.07

Yi San 李祘 (2007) - MBC Section TV (2007-08-24)

[Clip] section TV 082407 for MBC Yi San


Misc: Lee Yo Won in Starstyle
Get Karl, Oh Soo Jung thread; Lee Yun Hee

Soulstar - Forget You MV ft. Goo Hye Sun

HanJiMin&OhnJooWan - Interview Anatomy Classroom (Ent Relay)

Han Ji Min - Star Talk (Cinema Today)

Showbiz Extra Arirang Interview - Han Ji Min

Lee Jun-Ki and Han Ji-Min on fashion show

On the Parables of Mercy

On the Parables of Mercy
"The Road That Jesus Shows"

CASTEL GANDOLFO, Italy, SEPT. 16, 2007 ( Here is a translation of the address Benedict XVI delivered today before reciting the midday Angelus with the people gathered in the courtyard of the papal summer residence at Castel Gandolfo.

* * *

Dear Brothers and Sisters!

Today the liturgy re-proposes for our meditation the 15th chapter of the Gospel of Luke, one of the high points and one of the most moving of all pages of sacred Scripture. It is beautiful to think that wherever in the whole world the Christian community gathers to celebrate the Sunday Eucharist, there resounds on this day this good news of truth and of salvation: God is merciful love. The evangelist Luke has gathered together three parables of divine mercy in this chapter. The two shorter ones that are also found in Matthew and Mark are those of the lost sheep and the lost coin; the third one -- long, detailed and unique to Luke’s Gospel -- is the celebrated parable of the merciful Father, typically referred to as the "parable of the prodigal son."

In this page of the Gospel it seems as though we can almost hear the voice of Jesus, who reveals the countenance of his Father and our Father. At bottom, this is what he came into the world for: To speak to us of the Father; to make him known to us, lost children, and to reawaken in our hearts the joy of belonging to him, the hope of being forgiven and restored to our full dignity, the desire to live in his house forever, the house that is also our house.

Jesus recounted the three parables of mercy because the Pharisees and the scribes spoke ill of him, seeing that he allowed sinners to draw near to him and he even ate with them (cf. Luke 15:1-3). Thus, he explained, with his usual language, that God does not want even one of his children to be lost and his soul overflows with joy when a sinner converts. True religion therefore consists in being in tune with this heart "rich in mercy," which asks us to love everyone, even those who are distant and those who are our enemies, imitating the heavenly Father who respects everyone’s freedom and draws all to himself with the invincible force of his fidelity. This is the road that Jesus shows to those who want to be his disciples: "Do not judge … do not condemn … forgive and you will be forgiven; give and it will be given to you … be merciful as your Father in heaven is merciful" (Luke 6:36-38). In these parables we find very concrete indications for our daily conduct as believers.

In our time, humanity needs the mercy of God to be vigorously proclaimed and witnessed to. The beloved John Paul II, who was a great apostle of divine mercy, intuited this pastoral urgency. He dedicated his second encyclical to the merciful Father and throughout his pontificate he was a missionary of mercy to all nations. After the tragic events of Sept. 11, 2001, which obscured the dawn of the third millennium, he invited Christians and men of good will to believe that God’s mercy is stronger than every evil and that in the cross of Christ there is found the salvation of the world. May the Virgin Mary, Mother of Mercy, whom we contemplated yesterday as the sorrowful one at the foot of the cross, obtain for us the gift of always trusting in the love of God, and may she help us to be merciful as our Father in heaven.

[After praying the Angelus, the Holy Father addressed the pilgrims gathered at Castel Gandolfo in Italian, saying:]

This morning in Poland, at the shrine of Lichen, Cardinal Tarcisio Bertone, my secretary of state, in my name proclaimed as blessed Father Stanislao Papczynski, founder of the Congregation of Marian Clerics. I address a cordial greeting to the faithful gathered together for this happy occasion and to the many people who are devoted to this newly beatified son of the Church in whom they venerate a priest who was exemplary in preaching, in the formation of the laity, a father of the poor and an apostle of intercessory prayer for the dead.

And also this morning in Bordeaux, Cardinal José Saraiva Martins, prefect of the Congregation for Saints' Causes, in my name proclaimed as blessed Sister Marie Celine of the Presentation of the Blessed Virgin Mary, a professed nun of the Second Order of St. Francis. She wanted her life, which was marked by the cross, to be a sign of Christ’s love, as she herself said: "I thirst to be a rose of charity."

I would also like to mention Father Basile Antoine-Marie Moreau, founder of the Congregation of the Holy Cross, who was beatified yesterday in Le Mans by Cardinal Saraiva Martins. I entrust in a special way to the intercession of these newly beatified their spiritual sons and daughters, that they follow with ardor the luminous testimony of the prophets of God, who is Lord of every life.

Today is the 20th anniversary of the adoption of the "Montreal Protocol" on the substances that deplete the ozone layer, causing grave damage for human beings and the ecosystem. In the last two decades, thanks to exemplary collaboration between politicians, scientists and economists within the international community, important results have been obtained with positive repercussions on present and future generations. I desire that, on the part of everyone, cooperation intensify to the end of promoting the common good, development, and the safeguarding of creation, returning to the alliance between man and the environment, which must be a mirror of God the Creator, from whom we come and toward whom we are journeying.

[Translation by ZENIT]

[In English, the Holy Father said:]

I extend heartfelt greetings to the English-speaking visitors here today. In this Sunday’s Gospel, we hear of God’s infinite merciful love for all those who stray from the right path. With great confidence we turn to him and ask his forgiveness for the times we may have offended him. Upon all of you, and upon your families and loved ones at home, I invoke God’s abundant blessings.

© Copyright 2007 -- Libreria Editrice Vaticana

[Again in Italian, the Holy Father said:]

I am happy to welcome the prior general and the confreres of the Order of St. Augustine, who are celebrating their general chapter in these days. I assure them of a remembrance in prayer, that the Lord favor with abundant graces the work of the chapter and the life of the entire order in the various countries of the world in which it is present.

Father Cantalamessa on the Joy of Fatherhood

Father Cantalamessa on the Joy of Fatherhood
Pontifical Household Preacher Comments on Sunday's Readings

ROME, SEPT. 14, 2007 ( Here is a translation of a commentary by the Pontifical Household preacher, Capuchin Father Raniero Cantalamessa, on the readings from this Sunday's liturgy.

* * *

His father ran out to meet him
24th Sunday in Ordinary Time
Exodus 32:7-11, 13-14; 1 Timothy 1:12-17; Luke 15:1-32

In this Sunday's liturgy the entire 15th chapter of Luke's Gospel is read. The chapter contains the three "mercy parables": the lost sheep, the lost coin, and the prodigal son.

"A man had two sons": Anyone who has even the most minimal familiarity with the Gospel on hearing these five words will immediately exclaim, "the parable of the prodigal son!"

On other occasions I have focused on the spiritual significance of the parable; this time I would like to consider an aspect that has received little attention, but which is very relevant at this moment and close to life. At the bottom of the parable is simply the story of a reconciliation between father and son, and we all know that such a reconciliation is essential to the happiness of fathers and children.

Who knows why literature, art, theater and advertisements all concentrate on a single human relationship: the erotic one between man and woman, between husband and wife? It would seem that this is the only thing in life.

Advertisements and the cinema do nothing else but cook up the same dish using a thousand sauces. But we leave another human relationship, that is just as universal and vital, unexplored, one that is another great source of the joy of life: the relationship between father and children, the joy of paternity.

The only piece of literature that really deals with this theme is Franz Kafka's letter to his father. Ivan Sergeyevich Turgenev's famous novel "Fathers and Sons" does not actually treat of the relationship between natural fathers and children but between different generations.

If we serenely and objectively look into the human heart we will find that, in the majority of cases, a good, understanding, and untroubled relationship with his children is, for a mature, adult man, no less important and fulfilling than the relationship between a man and a woman. We know how important this relationship is for both sons and daughters and the tremendous void that is left by its disintegration.

As cancer usually attacks the most delicate organs in men and women, so also does the destructive power of sin and evil attack the most vital relationships in human existence. There is nothing worse in the relationship between a man and a woman than abuse, exploitation and violence, and there is nothing that is exposed to deformation like the relationship between fathers and children: authoritarianism, paternalism, rebellion, rejection, lack of communication.

We should not generalize. There are beautiful relationships between fathers and children and I myself have known various ones. We know, however, that there are also more numerous negative cases and difficult relationships between fathers and children. In the prophet Isaiah we read this exclamation of God: "I raised and reared these children but they have rebelled against me" (Isaiah 1:2). I believe that many fathers today know from experience what these words mean.

The suffering is reciprocal; it is not like the parable in which the fault is entirely the son's. There are fathers whose most profound suffering in life is being rejected or even despised by their children. And there are children whose most profound and unadmitted suffering is to feel misunderstood, to not be esteemed, to be rejected by their father.

I have focused on the human and existential implications of the parable of the prodigal son. But we are not only dealing with this, that is, with the amelioration of the quality of life in this world.

The undertaking of a great reconciliation between fathers and children and a profound healing of their relationship is something that is important for a new evangelization. We know how much the relationship with an earthly father can influence, positively or negatively, one's relationship with the heavenly Father and thus the Christian life as well.

When the precursor, John the Baptist, was born the angel said that one of his tasks would be "to turn the hearts of the fathers to the children and the hearts of the children to the fathers" [cf. Luke 1:17]. Today this is a task that is more important than ever.

America's religion

Mr. Kunstler, as far as I know, is not a great fan of Christianity, but he recognizes the spiritual malaise affecting the United States:

This, of course, represents an insidious psychology. It could only happen in a culture that has come off the rails mentally, so to speak, as ours has in the sense that nobody has any sense of consequence, neither the leaders nor those who affect to follow the leaders. The leading religion in America is not evangelical Christianity, it is the worship of unearned riches, and its golden rule is the belief that is is possible to get something for nothing. Its holy shrines are Las Vegas and Wall Street. (And, by the way, has anybody heard the evangelical Christians complain about Las Vegas? They complain about a lot of things, but are themselves among the greatest believers in unearned riches -- given their preference for prayer over earnest effort in the service of solving life's problems.)

This week's commentary is dedicated to Alan Greenspan, whose interview with 60 minutes was broadcast yesterday.

Sunday, September 16, 2007

Hanbok vids

The Western Confucian has gone native, giving up the Western suit and tie for the Korean hanbok.

Some youtube vids of hanbok...

Yoon Eun Hye YTN Star 07-13-2005

Han Ji Min - Fashion Show (Entertainment Relay)


Hanbok- The Clothes of Nature (1/2)

Hanbok- The Clothes of Nature (2/2)

How to wear a hanbok (pt.1), pt. 2


Hanbok - Traditional Korean Dress

Yu-na Kim in HanBok(Traditional Korean Costume)

How to Put on a Hanbok

Not many vids of men wearing hanbok... though there may be some footage on the variety shows.

Lee Sung-Ja Hanbok. I think one needs to join to see the catalog. (I don't know if there is a fee.) But here are some photos taken by customers. I'll have to ask someone to register for me, if possible...

Li Mei Hanbok
Bok Shin Hanbok
Lee Young Hee Korea Museum

Wish I could have attended the following:

flickr hanbok pool
Hanbok: The Art of Korean Clothing by Sunny Yang

鄧麗君 - 月亮代表我的心

Teresa Teng 鄧麗君 月亮代表我的心

Teresa Teng 鄧麗君 誰來愛我

Heart-Broken Love ~Teresa Teng

A fast version by Linda Wong: 王馨平 - 月亮代表我的心

The Independent: Oil industry 'sleepwalking into crisis'

Another one posted by Matt Drudge. Maybe he can get the word out to the rest of the U.S.

Oil industry 'sleepwalking into crisis'
Former Shell chairman says that diminishing resources could push price of crude to $150 a barrel
By David Strahan and Andrew Murray-Watson
Published: 16 September 2007
Lord Oxburgh, the former chairman of Shell, has issued a stark warning that the price of oil could hit $150 per barrel, with oil production peaking within the next 20 years.

He accused the industry of having its head "in the sand" about the depletion of supplies, and warned: "We may be sleepwalking into a problem which is actually going to be very serious and it may be too late to do anything about it by the time we are fully aware."

In an interview with The Independent on Sunday ahead of his address to the Association for the Study of Peak Oil in Ireland this week, Lord Oxburgh, one of the most respected names in the energy industry, said a rapid increase in the price of oil was inevitable as demand continued to outstrip supply. He said: "We can probably go on extracting oil from the ground for a very long time, but it is going to get very expensive indeed.

"And once you see oil prices in excess of $100 or $150 a barrel, the alternatives simply become more attractive on price grounds if on no others."

Lord Oxburgh added that oil majors must invest more heavily in developing viable alternatives to oil and gas. "If you look at it from oil companies' point of view, effectively what they're doing at the moment is continuing business as usual, and sticking their toes in the water in a number of areas which might become important in future.

"But at present there is a relatively poor business case for making significantly greater investment in these new areas."

Commenting on whether "peak oil" – the point when global oil production goes into terminal decline – was likely to be reached in the near future, he said: "In a way it scarcely matters; what really matters is the gap between production and demand. I don't know whether there is going to be a peak in world oil production, whether it's going to plateau and then slowly come down.

"It could well plateau within the next 20 years, and I guess I would be surprised if it hadn't."

The price of crude oil closed above $80 a barrel for the first time on Thursday, as a hurricane in Texas raised supply concerns.

US light crude hit $80.20, two cents higher than the price it touched on Wednesday. Oil prices have risen 30 per cent since the start of this year and are four times higher than their 2002 level.

The latest figures from the US Energy Information Administration show that global liquid fuels production in August was almost a million barrels per day lower than the same period in 2006.

The International Energy Agency has forecast what it calls an oil "supply crunch" by 2012, a prediction that Lord Oxburgh said could possibly come to pass. Lord Oxburgh is currently chairman of D1 Oils, a biodiesel company listed on the AIM market.

The difference between milkshakes and smoothies

I used to think that it was the absence of milk in the smoothie, and the substitution of frozen yogurt for ice cream. This was confirmed by the wiki entry on smoothie. Some people don't understand this, and use "smoothie" and "milkshake" interchangeably. (Like that one vendor at Pacific Mall in Toronto.)

Tonight I met the New Scot's Ethiopian friend over at White Mountain Creamery, across the street from BC. I got a strawberry smoothie, which wasn't very thick and not that tasty... and the frozen yogurt was a problem. I suppose I like smoothies made from sherbert more. They did use fresh strawberries and bananas, but no crushed ice.

Apparently the Melkite is now in Scranton--I think someone had already told me that before, but I had forgotten. I should write him a letter some time.

The New Scot's friend may have an opportunity to do some liturgical studies in Berkeley...

smoothie recipes; another website
Jamba Juice
Smoothie King
Planet Smoothie

Pickup Stix


Hrm, there are locations in Northern California. I suspect it might be better than Panda Express (but maybe it won't be...) There are a lot of Asians who work at Panda Express. How about Pei Wei? Yan Can is gone... I never got a chance to try the food there, thould I know people didn't have a high opinion of it, especially of its ready-made sauces.

Gods and Generals

I finally watched the movie all the way through last night.

When I watched Gettysburg (in the movie theater with Will Rx, if I recall correctly--he later gave me the videotape of the movie as a present), I was cheering for Colonel Chamberlin and the Federals, and against the Confederacy. Since then, a reversal has taken place, and my sympathies lie with the South, even if the agrarian and conservative legacy of the South has that glaring negative aspect of being tied to chattel slavery.

If I were Anglo, I'd want to have ties to the South, in particular Virginia (if only because that's the only southern state that I've spent time in). Shouldn't we who claim to be conservative be envious of those who are rooted in a locale, possessing a history and memory, local culture, and ties to other families?

It's unfortunate that the movie did not do well at the box office, and I don't think this is primarily due to the movie's defects, but a reflection of American society. Americans just aren't interested in their history or culture--there is no sense of local identity or one's roots. They don't care about the past, or about the issues behind the war. Many who are critical of the film's perspective reduce the war to a question about slavery. It seems to me that things are not that simple.

I don't think American conservatives are wrong in being concerned that more and more people are not being assimilated to Anglo culture. But more on this in another post.

It's interesting to note that only the mobilization of Virginia is shown--there are no comparable scenes taking place in the North (though we do see Joshua Chamberlin deciding to join the Federals). (And the agrarian nature of that society is clearly manifest; also, the movie makes it clear that not everyone in the South was a slave-owner, and they went to war not primarily to defend slavery but to protect local sovereignty.)

The movie is not bloody compared to other modern films, though casualties are shown; I was struck by the senselessness of the way they fought. Did they (particularly the South) not learn anything from the "irregular forces" operating in the South during the American Revolution (Rebellion?). It's not clear that one can cheer for one side or the other given the way the film presents battle and its aftermath.

Are firearms a more "humane" weapon, in comparison to a nuclear bomb or to edged weapons?
Can someone make that sort of comparison when it comes to tools that are meant to inflict harm on one's fellow human beings? Maybe if one is looking at something that will cause the least amount of pain and suffering, or the least amount of damage should one survive the wound.

Is there is a longer "director's cut" waiting to be made? It does seem like there is something missing from the film. (Some have criticized the movie for the absence of Antietam and some other major battles. What would have been presented in a TNT mini-series?) Perhaps some explanation of the South's strategy could have been helpful (especially since the movie spans 3 years), even if it's not really necessary for the movie. While it takes a "fair and balanced" approach to both sides, someone with an axe to grind would no doubt show the actions by the "Lincoln administration" in a more critical light.

Of course the exposition of each side's case is done quickly, through the characters--there's no in-depth treatment, like what you would expect in a history book. I need to find a good history book that actually discusses the evidence, instead of offering simplifications and moral judgments based upon them. What did the elites and generals of both sides write and say, in public and in private?

Much of the movie in fact focuses on Stonewall Jackson (perhaps too much?)--is he overrated as a military leader?

[Reader response to Why the South Lost the Civil War]

Some of the accompanying music in the first part of the movie seemed out of place. I haven't read the original novel, so I don't know if all of the lines are lifted from it or not, but some of the things some of the characters said struck me as a bit odd. (For example, Col. Chamberlin's speech before his regiment marches to the front at Fredericksburg.) It is interesting to note what Francis Blair says to Gen. Lee in offering him command of the forces of the Union--Ft. Sumter is used as a pretext. iirc, Chamberlin talks about defense of the Union and of the Constitution.

This is definitely not a movie for those with short attention spans. While there are some weaknesses to the film (which is probably to be expected when one is trying to do so much with so little time), they can be tolerated.

Ron Maxwell, Director of "Gettysburg" & "Gods and Generals"

Hayley Westenra, Abide With Me

Cantonese opera vids

好戏連台 - 合兵破曹


粵劇精選(1) - 紫釵記之拾釵

粵劇精選(2) - 獅吼記之休妻
粵劇精選(3) - 李後主之去國歸降

粵劇精選(5) -李後主之自焚

粵劇生旦(1) - 丁凡, 蔣文端

粵劇生旦(2) - 彭炽权, 曾慧

粵劇生旦(3) - 葉幼琪, 李淑勤

粵劇生旦(4) - 阮兆輝, 尹飛燕

粵劇生旦(5) - 姚志強, 蘇春梅

花旦 - 琼霞專輯


范蠡與西施 - Parting sorrows



Can't take an old dog new tricks

Pushy seniors... like those who cut to the front of the line because they think that they're only asking a question and therefore that makes it ok, such as the woman at the post office this morning. Or worse, they think they're entitled (even though having seniority does not make it so in every situation). Meanwhile, they're taking attention away from the customer the clerk is attending and holding up the rest of the line, all because they don't want to wait in line to ask the question, and they want things to be convenient for them.

People do become set in their ways, but I still think that one should feel ashamed for having lived so long and having so much time and opportunity to improve one's character, and yet not doing so, neglecting even basic courtesy.

If only more people would be acquainted with Cicero's De Senectute.

In the dialogue, Cato tells us "that the arms best adapted to old age are culture and the active exercise of the virtues. For if they have been maintained at every period - if one has lived much as well as long - the harvest they produce is wonderful, not only because they never fail us even in our last days (though that in itself is supremely important), but also because the consciousness of a well - spent life and the recollection of many virtuous actions are exceedingly delightful."

Alas, most people just don't give a thought to the cultivation of character.

If the only person you love is yourself, what rotten company you must have.