Events Coming to Grand Rapids, MI

Your calendar for the week of September 18

Hi ?? ????, here’s what Meetup looks like for you this week.

Top Meetups for you
Language & Ethnic Identity
Food & Drink
Tuesday, 6:00 PM Sep 19
  
3 Beer Geeks — 7 spots left!
Wednesday, 6:00 PM Sep 20
 
2 Beer Geeks
Sunday, 12:00 PM Sep 24
     
21 Foodies
Socializing
Games
Singles
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JOIN THE RBG MOVEMENT

African People of Love Skills of a Leader.
Leadership Skills are earned through initiative and studying.
1. LEADERSHIP IS NOT JUST IDEAS BUT ACTION AND IMPLEMENTATION.
2. A TASK MUST BE DRAWN UP WITH PLANS, BACK-UP PLANS, AND ESCAPE
PLANS.
3. THE GOALS OF A LEADER WILL ONLY BE REACHED THROUGH DIRECT
COMMISSION OF DUTIES AND ACCESS TO THE RESOURCES NEEDED TO
PERFORM THE TASK.
4. THE EMPOWERMENT OF THOSE IN COMMAND IS FIRST REALIZED BY
THEMSELVES, AND ONE BECOMES A LEADER WHEN ACTIONS OF SELF-DESIGN
BECOME USEFUL TO A CAUSE.
5. LEADERS MUST BE WILLING TO MAKE MISTAKES AND SEEING WHERE
MISTAKES MAY BE PROFITABLE WILL GIVE HIM THE ADVANTAGE IN THE
NEXT BATTLE.
6. A LEADER SHOULD LISTEN TO ALL AND USE ONLY THE ESSENTIAL
ELEMENTS NEEDED TO PERFORM A TASK. THIS EFFICIENT USE OF MATERIALS
WILL GIVE HIM THE ENDURANCE NEEDED TO FIGHT TWO AGAINST ONE.
7. A LEADER WILL SEE CASUALTY LOSS AS AN UNPREVENTABLE WEAPON.
8. A DEFENSIVE LEADER WILL NEVER BE IMPATIENT. ONLY ON THE
OFFENSIVE WILL A LEADER AND HIS TROOPS FEEL THE NEED TO ATTACK.
9. A LEADER WILL RANK HIS TROOPS BASED ON THE AMOUNT OF SKILL,
DISCIPLINE, GROWTH, INDIVIDUAL AND TEAM EFFORT SHOWN WITH EACH
LESSON TAUGHT
10. LEADERSHIP IS ALWAYS A TEST OF KNOWLEDGE, DEPENDABILITY, AND
WORK. THEREFORE, IT IS A SIGN OF WEAKNESS TO A LEADER THAT SOLDIERS
DO NOT TRY.
11. LEADERS KNOW TO PASS ON THEIR POSITION WHEN THE RIGHT TIME HAS
COME. THIS SHOULD BE DONE WITH NO RESISTANCE AND TO MAINTAIN
GROWTH WITHIN THE ORGANIZATION AS WELL AS THE INDIVIDUAL.
12. TO A LEADER, WAR IS AN ART, BEAUTIFUL AND RESPECTED THE SAME AS
PEACE.

Join the movement now in the Phoenix area?  Leave us a comment or call 602-770-6649 and leave a message someone will contact you ASAP with details on how to join.

Black Women Are Selling Themselves Out For “Likes”

 

Pay attention, and you will see which women on social media get the most praise from men. It is the women who get online and totally dismiss any type of male accountability. Their whole message is rooted in shaming women for everything, blaming her past experiences with abusive men on herself, and then directing this same misdirected self-accountability at other women. Her entire message is nothing more than coddling men and apologizing to men for the women who won’t continue to stroke their egos.

These women do not love other women. They will constantly make references like “Brother” but you won’t ever hear them offer a helping hand to sisters. They promote male leadership. They won’t acknowledge the harmful misogyny in our community but they are quick to bring up terms like “misandry” which is nothing but a deflection as women do not have the social power to oppress men. These women have no honest intention to restore the community. They just know that in this world, the only real way to draw the collective of male attention is by selling themselves out and other women.

Their self-esteems are low and damaged. By now, the only way they can feel validated is by having other men tell them, “You are a true queen. The world needs more women like you. You understand us, men. You are different than other women.”
These women will talk about how women need to be more respecting of men, but go view their page and you will see just how many men go unchecked after they resort to calling women “hoes” and “bitches”. But the moment a woman stands up to a man on that same page, the woman who owns the page will say, “Stop. This is why men do not protect us. Because you treat them like this.”

These self-hating women have the same topics always. And here they are.1. Women who lie about rape.

Women who lie about rape.

Statistics show that as low as two percent of rapes (or less) are detected as “lies” but yet these women dedicate their entire page to “exposing” women who supposedly lie about being raped and sympathizing for “men who were falsely accused”, but when it is time to talk about ACTUAL rapes which are extremely rampant in our community, they don’t want to talk about that because they feel it can “go both ways”.
Black men come on the page saying things like, “THANK YOU, QUEEN. YOU GET IT. MOST OF THESE BITCHES LIE ABOUT RAPE. THEY ARE JUST TRYING TO PAINT US OUT TO BE RAPISTS. I BET THE MAJORITY OF RAPE CASES AREN’T EVEN REALLY RAPE.” And then the woman sits up there agreeing with that, despite the fact that SHE was raped herself! Because she finds comfort in having men congratulate her for having an opinion that coddles men.

Women who make twerk videos.

For some odd reason, women love to judge other women who twerk online. This has become a big topic among men who want any reason to make women seem like a problem. Women caught onto this and seen how much men love to talk down on twerk videos. So now women who need male attention jumped right aboard. They share videos of women twerking and say, “Is this a real woman? Is this what we are asking men to protect? Now I bet if a man was to jack her ass up, yall would have a problem with that. But why are we not enraged at this woman twerking?”

Hmm, maybe we are not enraged because a woman shaking her own butt online is not a death threat to the community. Maybe we find rape and domestic abuse to be ten times more detrimental than a twerk video online.

Is that really ALL you have to talk about? Really?

Single mothers.

Women know how much Black men despise single mothers and blame single mothers for all the problems this world has to offer. So now women, EVEN WOMEN WHO ARE SINGLE MOTHERS THEMSELVES, are riding this train. They tell men that they are right about single mothers. They say things like, “Before we judge men for leaving mothers single, let’s talk about what women do to scare men away. Women do not listen. They always want to think for themselves instead of letting the man lead. We can’t blame men for leaving us. This is our karma. Live with it. We will be lucky if any man wants to commit to us at this point. Men have no reason to be with a woman with kids.”

Just a bunch of desperate self-accountability so that a sorry man will see and say “DAMN. I DON’T HAVE TO DO ANY WORK WITH THIS WOMAN. I AM GOING TO MAKE HER MY QUEEN. WHY AREN’T ALL WOMEN LIKE HER?”

“Whores”

These women really feel like they are changing the condition of the world by shaming sexual women. They expect an ultra increase in respect just off the strength of being sexually reserved. They bash women who do not gear their sex lives around society’s standards. They call other Black women “hoes”, “sluts”, and “whores”. They say “Act like a lady. Have some class. Then maybe men will start to respect you.”
The irony is that men will come on there praising her for shunning these sexually uninhibited women BUT yet these are the same men who put in an extreme effort trying to have sex with the same “hoes” they talk down on.

But you know what? These are the Black women online who have damn near the whole entire male collective supporting their page. Not supporting HER of course because they won’t give her even a dollar donation and wouldn’t step in if a man was beating her up. But they support her message because it makes them feel good!

Black women can have all the attention they want from having internalized misogynistic pages like this, BUT you are only attracting men who will NEVER accept responsibility. You are only attracting men who will ALWAYS blame you no matter what they do. You will attract men who will only “respect” you if you fit their criteria.
Face it. Your whole life is geared around approval from MEN.

You do not care about Black women. Stop trying to act like saying, “Cover up. Don’t be a whore. Dress like a woman.” has anything to do with caring about Black women. You will let ANY man disrespect ANY woman as long as it means you will get all the male attention you need.

You all should stop supporting pages from Black women like this. It only contributes to our demise.

http://www.facebook.com/motherafrika

Who taught you to hate the texture of your hair? Who taught you to hate the color of your skin? To such extent you bleach, to get like the white man. Who taught you to hate the shape of your nose and the shape of your lips? Who taught you to hate yourself from the top of your head to the soles of your feet? Who taught you to hate your own kind? Who taught you to hate the race that you belong to so much so that you don’t want to be around each other? No… Before you come asking Mr. Muhammad does he teach hateyou should ask yourself who taught you to hate being what God made you.

We don’t steal, we don’t gamble, we don’t lie and we don’t cheat.
You can’t get into a whiskey bottle without getting past a government seal. You can’t buy a deck of cards without getting past a government seal. Here the white man makes the whiskey then puts you in jail for getting drunk. He sells you the cards and the dice and puts you in jail when he catches you using them.

The most disrespected woman in America, is the black woman. The most un-protected person in America is the black woman. The most neglected person in America, is the black womanAnd as Muslims, the honorable Elijah Muhammed teaches us to respect, our women, and to protect our women. And the only time a Muslim gets real violent, is when someone goes to molest his woman. We will kill you, for our women I’m making it plain yes, we will kill you for our women. We believe that if the white man, will do whatever is necessary, to see that his woman get respect and protection, then you and I will never be recognized as men. Until we stand up like men and pays the same penalty over the head of anyone, who puts his filthy hands out, to put it in a direction of our women.

Events Coming to Your Neck of the Woods….

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UYIP’s 7th Annual Royal Afrikan Dance Fundraiser

marriage todayThis is an affair for adults ages 21 and over. Our reasons for organizing The Royal Afrikan Dance are: 1) to provide African American adults with an opportunity to have fun at a purpose driven and culturally grounded event, 2) to pay honor and respect to African History & Culture and 3) raise funds for U. Y. I. P. This is not just another dance, this is a Fundraiser.
The Royal Afrikan Dance is an up-scale and elegant affair. It’s formal; the dress code is the best of traditional African attire. The atmosphere is ecstatic yet peaceful. The environment is harmonic and the energy melodic. There’s an African Ancestral presence. This is a dance of royalty; resurrecting the regality within African Americans. The African King-ship and Queen-ship is represented in full force at the Royal Afrikan Dance.

**There will be a tour of the museum beginning at 7pm, so come early! Tour facilitated by Anani Kulu Fatiu!
**Entertainment By Dj Spirulina Green.
**Savory, Fulfilling, Nourishing Vegetarian friendly food to satisfy your Royalness!

Tickets are $40 in advance, more at the door so come out and raise funds for UYIP( Urban Youth Initiative Project, Inc. ) You can also pay at Paypal: paypal.me/uyip/40
Website www.uyip06.org

42 attendees (None invited)

I’m goingI might go

 

Philosophy of Religion

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What is Religion?
Definition of Religion

I.    Introduction

II.                    The Questions

III.                The Requirements of a Definition

IV.                The Definition

V.                    Final Questions

I.      Introduction

Once people start to think about religion seriously and they study a variety of religions they are prompted to ask questions about the very nature of religion itself. What is the essence of religion? What is religion all about? What is the common element that links all religions that makes them belong or fit into the same category? A variety of answers has been offered by philosophers, theologians, scientists and a host of others from various disciplines and worldviews

II. The Questions

1.    What is religion?

2.    What is the essence of religion?

3.    What do all religions have in common?

4.    What is it about religion that makes it so distinct from other forms of life, from other worldviews?

5.    What is it about religion that makes it appear resistant to the efforts of philosophers and scientists and skeptics to disprove religious claims?

6.    How can religious believers go on believing without evidence to support their positions and beliefs and even against arguments that show their beliefs to contain irrational elements such as inconsistencies and contradictions?

III . The Requirements of a Definition

Note: What follows is based upon the work of Frederick Ferre in his Basic Modern Philosophy of Religion.

Any definition of religion must satisfy not only the general criteria that all definitions must meet, but a few additional concerns specific to religious phenomena as well. Definitions must:

1.    use ordinary language

2.    avoid ambiguity

3.    avoid contradictions

4.    include all that needs to be included

5.    exclude all that needs to be excluded

6.    avoid circularity

Ordinary language usage of the term “religion” is inadequate to the task of definition because it is among other things, ambiguous and oftentimes contradictory as well. Ordinary language usage is blind and can not deal with new phenomena and can not resolve confusions.

Consider some of these examples of common definitions offered by ordinary language.

Religion is:

a.    belief in god

b.    conviction in supernatural realities relevant to human well being

c.     all of life

d.    whatever gives meaning to life

These offerings make religion into something that is irrational, too superficial or they are too inclusive or too exclusive as definitions for they fail to appreciate the breadth and depth of religious phenomena.

Whatever religion is it must be relevant to:

1.    all kinds of people

2.    all aspects of life

3.    relate to social and public practices

4.    relate to private experiences and practices

Furthermore, any definition of religion must satisfy these requirements:

A.  Scope

i.      inclusive

ii.    specific

A.  Cruciality

i.      Unspecialized- relevant to all types of people and all aspects of life

ii.    hospitable- to the diversity of the phenomena

iii. permissive- as to personal and social role

iv.  open- as to the truth or falsity of claims

v.    unprejudiced- as to possible harm or benefit of the phenomena

So, considering all of the above requirements what would the definition need to notice about religion?

Religion:

a.    involves the whole of life

b.    is open to all kinds of people

c.     issues naturally in widely various activities

d.    issues in widely various ideas and beliefs

e.     exists and is exhibited in private and social settings

f.      is open to different opinions as to the truth or falsity of its beliefs

g.    has consequences considered to be either harmful or beneficial to individuals and groups

 

IV. The Definition

To satisfy the above requirements and conditions religion must be placed within a category of human phenomena that manifests itself in a manner with features illustrative of the characteristics listed above.

After placing religion in such a category it is necessary to distinguish it from other members of that category. What is the genus and what is the species that identifies religion uniquely?

VALUATION is the genus and the distinguishing characteristics of religion that separate it from other forms of valuation are intensity and comprehensiveness.

Religion is the most intensive and comprehensive method of valuing that is experienced by humankind.

Religion is a way of valuing that is most comprehensively and intensively experienced.

This definition is both ideal and actual. It enables us to both understand and explain religious phenomena better.

It enables us to understand how it is distinguished from other types of human experiences.

It enables us to understand better how it relates to other forms of life or language games.

Organized religion is an institutionalized way of valuing that is comprehensive and intensive.

As cultus it involves ritual and practices as aids to emotions and expressions of the valuation.

As doctrinus it involves ideational elements that enable the comprehensive inclusion of the valuation.

People participate in religion in different ways. People are religious to different degrees.

People have a religion in different manners:

  1. to be associated with a religion
  2. partial personal appropriation –”latent residue” in experience once religion has been internalized
  3. religion guides and integrates a person’s valuing in all aspects of life

This definition and this view of religion includes all the religions that have been traditionally thought of as religions and it excludes phenomena such as magic, art, and science from being considered as candidates for the title of religion. It has the power to discriminate among phenomena.

When religion is seen as a form of valuing and the most intensive and comprehensive form of valuing at that, then it is possible to understand why scientific findings and philosophical criticisms do not necessarily disturb its adherents.

Religion is about valuing and not about reasoning or about truth! This explains why the following is true of religion:

  • Religion is more important than GOD!
  • Religion is more important than TRUTH!
  • Religion is more important than reasoning!
  • Religion is more important than nearly anything else!

Think again of the ideas of Paul Tillich that faith is the state of being ultimately concerned and how the word ultimately reflects what is most intensely valued.

Faith as Ultimate Concern” by Paul Tillich     Summary by Meghan Ramsay (QCC, 2004)

According to Tillich, “faith is the state of being ultimately concerned.”  The Ultimate Concern is that which demands complete surrender of the person who faithfully accepts the Ultimate.  Additionally, faith in and surrender to the Ultimate promises total completion regardless of what must be sacrificed in the name of faith.  Tillich argues that faith is a task for the believer’s complete being—for instance, it is an act of both the conscious and the unconscious.  He refers to faith as a “total and centered act of the personal self, the act of unconditional, infinite and ultimate concern.”  Tillich then goes on to examine the sources for faith.  He asserts that faith arises out of man’s awareness that he is a part of the infinite yet he is not the owner of this infinity.  Additionally, he points out that God cannot be an object of faith without also being the subject of man’s faith.  God, asserts Tillich, is present as the subject and object of ultimate faith while at the same time is transcendent beyond both subject and object.  Tillich warns that there are finite things that claim infinity, such as the nation or state.  However, unlike God, believers can approach such finite things with “ordinary knowledge.”  Since God is infinite and ultimate and faith in God is the ultimate concern, Tillich asserts that only symbolic language is sufficient to express faith and God.  Thus, he outlines the definition of the term “symbol.”  Like signs, symbols refer to that which is beyond themselves.  For instance, a stop sign points to the command to stop the movement of a vehicle.  Similarly letters refer to sounds and meanings.  However, unlike signs, symbols play a part in that which they represent and cannot be easily replaced.  For instance, a country’s flag not only represents the nation that it stands for but also is an active participant in portraying the country’s “power and dignity.”  Thus, it cannot simply be replaced unless the character of the nation itself is also changed.  Tillich also asserts that symbols allow us to experience other levels of reality that are normally off limits to us.  For instance art creates a symbol for a plane that we cannot move toward by science alone.  Additionally, symbols open aspects of our souls which allow us to experience awareness of ourselves that we were not conscious of prior to experiencing the symbol (such as the depths that we can reach by listening to the “melodies and rhythms in music”).  Another characteristic of a symbol is that it cannot be manufactured.  Symbols arise from the unconscious and must be accepted on that level before conscious acceptance.  Finally, since symbols cannot be intentionally produced, they come about and cease to exist in due time.  In essence, they are borne out of a need and they perish when they no longer generate a reaction within the group that originally used them for expressive purposes.

Tillich then goes on to assert that anything that achieves ultimate concern for man is elevated to the status of god.  However, when things like a nation or success become elevated to the level of ultimacy, they are merely false or idolatrous symbols of ultimate concern.  Tillich also discusses that myths are an integral part of our ultimate concern.  While a myth must be recognized as a myth (much like how a symbol must be recognized as a symbol), Tillich argues that any attempt to remove the mythological from our consciousness will be unsuccessful because myths signify a collection of symbols which stand for our ultimate concern.  One might be able to replace one myth with another, but s/he could never completely remove mythology from human consciousness.  In fact, Tillich argues that even a “broken myth,” one which has been proven to be understood as a myth and has not been removed from or replaced within consciousness, cannot be replaced with a scientific substitute because myths are the symbolic language of faith.  However, Tillich also warns that one cannot simply accept myths as literal truths because they then loose their symbolic meaning and rob God of his standing as the ultimate.

Tillich, Paul.  Dynamics of Faith.  HarperCollins, 1957.

There are other sources that serve as the object of faith for humans.  People can have faith in science and in their family.  But there are few other sources for value.  People need to have faith and meaning and value in order to orient themselves to life in this world.  Religion is a phenomena that arises out of that need.  Religious people are willing to live according to and at times to die for what they most value.  Religion is the primary form in which that valuation is expressed and transmitted from one generation to the next.  It provides for a foundation for a moral order and in past times it has supplied answers to many questions of great importance.  Science may now serve many people as a better source of answers for many of those questions but it does not serve as a source of value.

Religion is likely to continue for some time as a popular and important feature of human culture.  As more people come to have a better understanding of the nature of religion there will be a more intelligent and penetrating questioning of religious phenomena.  Philosophy serves to provide a methodology for that activity.

To satisfy the above requirements and conditions religion must be placed within a category of human phenomena that manifests itself in a manner with features illustrative of the characteristics listed above.

After placing religion in such a category it is necessary to distinguish it from other members of that category. What is the genus and what is the species that identifies religion uniquely?

VALUATION is the genus and the distinguishing characteristics of religion that separate it from other forms of valuation are intensity and comprehensiveness.

Religion is the most intensive and comprehensive method of valuing that is experienced by humankind.

Religion is a way of valuing that is most comprehensively and intensively experienced.

This definition is both ideal and actual. It enables us to both understand and explain religious phenomena better.

It enables us to understand how it is distinguished from other types of human experiences.

It enables us to understand better how it relates to other forms of life or language games.

Organized religion is an institutionalized way of valuing that is comprehensive and intensive.

As cultus it involves ritual and practices as aids to emotions and expressions of the valuation.

As doctrinus it involves ideational elements that enable the comprehensive inclusion of the valuation.

People participate in religion in different ways. People are religious to different degrees.

People have a religion in different manners:

  1. to be associated with a religion
  2. partial personal appropriation –”latent residue” in experience once religion has been internalized
  3. religion guides and integrates a person’s valuing in all aspects of life

This definition and this view of religion includes all the religions that have been traditionally thought of as religions and it excludes phenomena such as magic, art, and science from being considered as candidates for the title of religion. It has the power to discriminate among phenomena.

When religion is seen as a form of valuing and the most intensive and comprehensive form of valuing at that, then it is possible to understand why scientific findings and philosophical criticisms do not necessarily disturb its adherents.

Religion is about valuing and not about reasoning or about truth! This explains why the following is true of religion:

  • Religion is more important than GOD!
  • Religion is more important than TRUTH!
  • Religion is more important than reasoning!
  • Religion is more important than nearly anything else!

There are other sources that serve as the object of faith for humans.  People can have faith in science and in their family.  But there are few other sources for value.  People need to have faith and meaning and value in order to orient themselves to life in this world.  Religion is a phenomena that arises out of that need.  Religious people are willing to live according to and at times to die for what they most value.  Religion is the primary form in which that valuation is expressed and transmitted from one generation to the next.  It provides for a foundation for a moral order and in past times it has supplied answers to many questions of great importance.  Science may now serve many people as a better source of answers for many of those questions but it does not serve as a source of value.

Religion is likely to continue for some time as a popular and important feature of human culture.  As more people come to have a better understanding of the nature of religion there will be a more intelligent and penetrating questioning of religious phenomena.  Philosophy serves to provide a methodology for that activity.

CONCLUSION
This has been a very long series of sections with a great deal of material in them.  You will have your notes and references to refer to over the years should you wish to refer back to these materials and think about these matters some more.

The topic of religion is one that is capable of raising great passion in human beings. Hopefully, the reader is now better informed as to the major issues in and perspectives on religion and  may have a better understanding of religion as a human phenomena and of the intensity of experience with which it is often associated.  The key questions concerning the nature of faith and the existence of divine, spiritual or supernatural beings have not been resolved in this work.  It is for each person to make the best reasoned judgment on these matters after a careful consideration of all the evidence and all the alternative positions.   To avoid such judgments becoming matters of faith and doctrine and dogma then such judgments, in the realm of Philosophy and rational discourse, must also be kept under continuing scrutiny in the light of new evidence and the presentation of new perspectives and arguments.

 

Prayer

African People of Love! - Webmaster Newsletter - December 2010
What is this word prayer?  The dictionary defines prayer in a general sense, the act of asking for a favor, and particularly with earnestness; to make a request in a humble manner to address God or a god with adoration, confession, supplication, or thanksgiving.

When we think of prayer we often think of asking God for something.  Indeed,  prayer would certainly include asking as well as worship and adoration but I am thinking that prayer could be  a dialogue with God.  In other words, not a one-sided conversation but also listening for a response from God.

In Mark chapter 9, Yahshua is transfigured and Peter, James and John get in on the experience.  In this amazing instance where Yahshua was shining with the glory of God and Moses and Elijah appeared talking with Yahshua:  vs 4 of Mark chapter 9 says;

And there appeared unto them Elias with Moses: and they were talking with Yahshua.

Not talking to Yahshua but talking with Yahshua.   Expressly, Yahshua spoke and Moses and Elijah spoke.  It was a conversation.  They were dialoguing.  They were exchanging words and thoughts.  There was a back and forth interaction.  Speaking and listening.  Peter spoke up in the middle of the exchange resulting in a gentle admonishment from heaven.  Mark gives us the details in Mark 9:5-7:

And Peter answered and said to Yahshua, Master, it is good for us to be here: and let us make three tabernacles; one for thee, and one for Moses, and one for Elias. 6 For he wist not what to say; for they were sore afraid. 7 And there was a cloud that overshadowed them: and a voice came out of the cloud, saying, This is my beloved Son: hear him.

In prayer, there is a time to speak and a time to listen.  This is the balance of prayer.  We talk and God responds.  God talks and we have a discussion.   The lesson of prayer is to learn what the preacher says in the book of Ecclesiastes chapter 3 and verse 7:

…… a time to keep silence, and a time to speak.

Prayer is a great benefit and enjoyment…. if we do it right.