Saturday, May 26, 2012

Our Lady of the Rockies--My Lady of the Rockies

I recently got back from an expedition and thought I should share some pictures of the event. It was a bachelor's trip to Montana with some friends. A bachelor's trip seemed appropriate because soon approaching is my own wedding next Friday. I don't think I gained any wise insight from the trip, so I won't be too wordy, but I will share some sweet pictures.

To explain the choice of destination, we'll have to go back 2 years while I was scouring the internet for cool places to visit. A web search returned a description of "Our Lady of the Rockies" in Butte, Montana that left me envious. Envious of my future self who would one day visit her. We decided to visit the Lady and make a trip of it, by visiting Glacier National Park (also in Montana) thereafter.

We arrived in Butte late in the evening, and decided to park ourselves next to the freeway and pitch our tent for a night of restful and safe sleep. We thought parking next to the freeway would help keep us safe from any creeps lurking the countryside.

Unfortunately right behind us was a creepy gulch/highway underpass combo.

This is a picture of Our Lady of the Rockies at night. She is radiant.

I think we hiked about 1300 feet in elevation and a couple miles in distance to get to Our Lady.

Paying my respects. We would note later, when reading a more detailed description of the builder's intentions of Our Lady, the irony of us four guys visiting a statue dedicated to women everywhere, while on a bachelor trip.

The view from Our Lady's perch. The road in the bottom part of the picture is the highway from which we hiked.

With bull, twisty cone in hand.

 These pictures are from Glacier National Park. It was beautiful, and looked eerily like scenes from Jurassic Park.

A log dam on Avalanche Lake. 

Thursday, April 5, 2012

In the spring a young man's fancy lightly turns to thoughts of love.

Alfred Lord Tennyson

Saturday, March 3, 2012

Pride and Love and Faith

I've been thinking a lot lately about pride and faith--and how love is usually the casualty in the conflict between the two. At work I get to talk with people who disbelieve, because of pride. In my personal life I get to interact with people who believe, largely because of pride. I'm starting to think it is a rare one who believes in something independent of his/her desired perceptions from others. I think this world would be a happier place if we followed what was in our hearts, instead of worrying about praise or respect.

I read this in Mormon, chapter 8 this morning:

36 And I know that ye do walk in the pride of your hearts; and there are none save a few only who do not lift themselves up in the pride of their hearts, unto the wearing of very fine apparel, unto envying, and strifes, and malice, and persecutions, and all manner of iniquities; and your churches, yea, even every one, have become polluted because of the pride of your hearts.
37 For behold, ye do love money, and your substance, and your fine apparel, and the adorning of your churches, more than ye love the poor and the needy, the sick and the afflicted.
38 O ye pollutions, ye hypocrites, ye teachers, who sell yourselves for that which will canker, why have ye polluted the holy church of God? Why are ye ashamed to take upon you the name of Christ? Why do ye not think that greater is the value of an endless happiness than that misery which never dies—because of the praise of the world?
39 Why do ye adorn yourselves with that which hath no life, and yet suffer the hungry, and the needy, and the naked, and the sick and the afflicted to pass by you, and notice them not?
Mormon 8: 36-39

If we could separate ourselves from our pride I think we would be drawn to God and to each other by an inexplicable attractive-force. Faith won't be resisted. Love won't be forgotten nor need to be remembered. Marriage won't be begun too soon, nor ended too early. Careers won't supplant time given to those we love. Money won't be as important as honesty and inspiration. If we thought of ourselves exactly how we thought of everyone else, we would seek not our own nor waste a minute of our time or thinking (more than necessary) on ourselves.

The short of the long of it is, I wish there was less thinking about ourselves and more willingness to love and believe in God. Not believing because it allows us to be socially accepted or differentiated, but believing because we trust, we love and we feel it in our hearts. And that takes some work--and a lot of good art and prayer.

For the record, when I write like this, it is never to chasten anyone but myself. I too often forget the faith that moves me. I forget the love that fills me.

Thursday, February 9, 2012


Since I have a lot more time on my hands these days, I do things like google "quotes" and read what follows. Here are some of my favorites from my hour of quote reading last night:

Such as are your habitual thoughts, such also will be the character of your mind; for the soul is dyed by the thoughts.

To the wise, life is a problem; to the fool, a solution.

Accept the things to which fate binds you, and love the people with whom fate brings you together, but do so with all your heart.

Be content to seem what you really are.

-Marcus Aurelius

I care not much for a man's religion whose dog and cat are not the better for it.

Labor is prior to, and independent of, capital. Capital is only the fruit of labor, and could never have existed if labor had not first existed. Labor is the superior of capital, and deserves much the higher consideration.

Sir, my concern is not whether God is on our side; my greatest concern is to be on God's side, for God is always right.

-Abraham Lincoln

I hear and I forget. I see and I remember. I do and I understand.

The superior man understands what is right; the inferior man understands what will sell.


Concern for man and his fate must always form the chief interest of all technical endeavors. Never forget this in the midst of your diagrams and equations.

Few are those who see with their own eyes and feel with their own hearts.

He who can no longer pause to wonder and stand rapt in awe, is as good as dead; his eyes are closed.

Information is not knowledge.

It is a miracle that curiosity survives formal education.

Love is a better teacher than duty.

Science is a wonderful thing if one does not have to earn one's living at it.

Science without religion is lame, religion without science is blind.

Try not to become a man of success, but rather try to become a man of value.

-Albert Einstein

Monday, February 6, 2012


A funny thing happens when you aren't sharing your thoughts. They either tend to lose meaning or you tend to lose them altogether. So, here I am sharing my thoughts in hopes that they will always be meaningful to me.

I've been thinking a lot about "meaning" lately. "Purpose" might also serve as a useful synonym, but I like "meaning" even more. It feels more fundamental. Where do we get purpose and meaning in our lives? I'd realized sometime last week that my life didn't feel very meaningful. Going to DC this past weekend made me realize why that was.

I think meaning in life is derived from the level to which we give ourselves to others. We are infants when it comes to trying to supply our own lives with meaning. We need the help and support of others if we want to feel like life has any purpose. When others are absent from our lives, the meaning we felt when they were present disappears slowly after their leaving.

But life feels so meaningful now!

A promise to an amazing girl is filling my life with so much purpose right now that I can hardly contain it! I am lucky to be loved. I am lucky to be able to love. And love her I do.

And love is the greatest meaning I can possibly imagine.