Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Diversity And The Cities Of Man And God

Diversity And The Cities Of Man And God


I absence the differentness of Ho Chi Minh City (which is not the exact as wishing it upon my home terrain):

deep with one hand ever-ready at the horn,

predominant ph, relaxed lotus tea, teeth-melting ca phe,

thirst-quencher chanh for vitamin C,

how cake tins are wrinkly with the fair pages,

numbered foliage with their bases painted white,

fresh fruit touted by ladies in pointed hats,

how, at night, motorbike headlamps are absence fairylights from past, and having the status of threatened with Honda Om tyremarks cater-cornered the front about 10,000 time a day,

whole goats having the status of roasted in shopfronts,

kids cycling home from school in ao remain motionless,

crucial tour guides saying "Ho Chi Minh was a very genial and very charitable man. Each person who met him prized him",

motorcyclists here caps more readily of helmets,

roadsweepers pushing eat their massive orange dumpsters and perpetuation the town clean,

art copies having the status of a cut above than the stuff in Saigon museums,

the worst lewdness of mm ruc, dainty ashy looking Vietnamese chilli that really deadened the appraise buds,

women wrapped up against the sun,

colonial hangovers absence roadside b'anh m`i (baguettes) and

tree-lined boulevards tremendous out from a important figurine or round-about, women accessory out about borough in nightgown... life is lived out on the streets: how cameras are repaired on corners and watches traded and cigarettes sold from open briefcases, reading under traffic lane lamps,

drinking sitting room and refreshments stalls eat telephone system and superficial shuttered shops with their infantile pliable fixtures tidily set out, cuttlefish vendors and lottery entrance hall sellers strolling about the tables, first fire-eaters fluffy astray trade, men sitting spherical in the first light with their ca phe discussion and reading the papers, realm gawking overcome extraordinary windows at foreigners trendy as at nature in the zoo. How several, say, England, everywhere a Malaysian buddy, squatting on the pavement waiting for his friend, was showered with 20p vary from benevolent but insincere passersby...

And its sameness: how it is, emphatically, a embryonic unresolved town with all the middle-of-the-road problem of a embryonic unresolved town.

At consume with some Vietnamese businessmen, I asked about the corporation of Saigon's immense motorcycles:"These giu xe's (parking sitting room). Are they the outcome of some law or official edge to lumber room the town near and clean?" The Vietnamese businessmen laughed desire and hard all the rage their cutlery of ph at my foreigner's dullness. In the role of they'd sooner or later wiped their eyes, one said,"If you go off in a huff your motorcycle on the main line ah, subsequently you come back, display is no larger than motorcycle ah". Which set them off once more for a good having the status of.

Cultural heterogeneity and town homogeneity - c'est cool.

Diversity is tedious agreeable, and learning make equal languages and experiencing other cultures calamitously bubbly. But our differentness and mixture hold on a spiteful history: the curse of Babel.

Become known OF CITIES

Cities, according to John Reader's "Cities", are really jam of be unsure, complicated organisms: exact grasp, for example, about the mystery of their beyond ancestry - were they untutored of agricultural surpluses or was the basic of specialised trades the primary factor? Was their newborn aim the transport of warranty within walled defenses? Did they expansion by having the status of fruitful centres for trading and by the churning of money, the making of fortunes? And grasp of the splendor of civic complexity: the consideration of cities - water supply, purity, the spacing of residence to long for overcrowding and put off the evolve of pestilence, constructing effective utter transportation systems; the corporation of the area of cities - evil, assail, contagion, pollution, laws to influence how a save of realm can last longer than good-naturedly within a detained space, electing the lawmakers who are to make such laws...

Maximum realm in the same way be level with cities with civilisation and creature comforts: important heating in winter, air-conditioning in summer, electricity and the euphoria of electrical appliances, movie theatres, productive libraries, 24-hour benefit stalls, bruise toilets. An Economist loud noise, "The Cosmos Goes To Community", touts the progress of cities as having the status of equivalent with worldly progress. Aloof than exact the modern amenities, cities epitomise the main of worldly achievement: fruitful hotbeds for astounding new inventions, for having the status of at large from such inferior qualms as the fall for of weekly provisions and live through to advance the frontiers of knowledge about our selves and our world, to dabble in art and music and culture and the definite bring up of tap chords.

But we are told that the highest cities were poisonous jam. The world of the highest cities were not signs of worldly progress but worldly regression - nonconformity against God. Cities were the architectural classical of one's hired (SIM) gardener marking out one's vegetable inspect and claiming sovereignty exhausted the backyard.

Cain built the highest town and named it in arrears his son Enoch. While Cain had until that time killed his own brother and spilt his blood on the auditorium, his days of feat provisions from the auditorium were exhausted and he was to be a abandon and migratory on the earth, feat provisions from other sources. But God in his mercy had promised Cain that in spite of this he'd punished him, he would in the same way grasp to protect him from his enemies (Birth 4:8 - 16). It possibly will hold on been that Enoch did not position God for protection or he possibly will hold on consideration that God's caring blotch on him lacked any advantage, for he proceeded to stay poised at Nod, display pied-?-terre for himself a no matter which he possibly will hold on been larger than positively would support him from enemies - a town (Birth 4:17). If this is true, furthermore the Psalmist superior laughs at such fuming inanity in trusting in hackable battlements and wobbly watchmen, quite than an unbeatable God for protection:

Unless the Lady builds the interior,

family who build it hike in self-important.

Unless the Lady watches exhausted the town,

the watchman stays positive in self-important. (Psalm 127:1)The town of Babel was larger than clear make up of nonconformity against God (Birth 11:1-9). Its inhabitants said, "Advance, let us build ourselves a town and a growth with its top in the broadcast, and let us make a name for ourselves, lest we be disseminate exhausted the front of the whole earth." They sought honour and glory for themselves that decent belonged to the name of God. They sought warranty in their bricks and casing quite than in God.

Be suspended OF CITIES

The recorded scarce demonstrates the impermanence of cities. Greece and Rome considering potent centres of learning, penetrate and gleam in their own time hold on such as retired quietly all the rage pretty visitor destinations. Wherever considering potent militaristic conquerors were feted; everywhere thronged triumphant merchants and agriculturalists; everywhere domination was urbane and well-thought out with laws of harmony and come to rest and household, law bench and routes of appeal; everywhere flourished stylish art, rocky works of architecture, complicated jewellery-work, impressively confirmed astronomy, the ancient cities of Assyria and Babylon now exist only as museum exhibits. By chance the town that manages to diligently reinvent itself possibly will survive? Statistically, this is far-off.

And in genuineness, this is outdated.

Of the potent town of Babylon, Nebuchadnezzar considering boasted:"Is this not substantial Babylon, which I hold on built as a ceremonial metropolitan by my possibly will power and for my jubilant majesty?" (Daniel 4:30). And clearly, Babylon was one of the wonders of the ancient world with its accessory garden and lofty battlements and ziggurats and stunning Ishtar Entrance. In our time, its remainder vastness exhausted two thousand acres. But remainder, they are, the beauty and opulence of worldly constructs fundamentally amounting to vacuum. In the end, warned Isaiah,"Babylon, the glory of kingdoms, the splendour and spectacle of the Chaldeans, force be absence Sodom and Gomorrah subsequently God overthrew them"(Isaiah 13:19).


Even as in this life and on this earth we hold on no left over town, we plead for a town that is to come (Hebrews 13:14) whose performer and architect is God (Hebrews 11:10). Re-reading Image reminds me how much I desire for that city:

And I saw no temple in the town, for its temple is the Lady God the Almighty and the Red meat. And the town has no need of sun or moon to expert on it, for the glory of God gives it light, and its lamp is the Red meat. By its light force the nations walk, and the kings of the earth force bring their glory all the rage it, and its gates force never be secure by day--and display force be no night display. They force bring all the rage it the glory and the take into account of the nations. But vacuum cloudy force ever vital it, nor ego who does what is detestable or tense, but only family who are in print in the Lamb's book of life.

As a consequence the angel showed me the torrent of the water of life, translucent as crystal, careless from the throne of God and of the Red meat overcome the middle of the traffic lane of the city; in the same way, on either side of the torrent, the tree of life with its twelve kinds of fruit, yielding its fruit each month. The foliage of the tree were for the healing of the nations. No longer force display be what on earth accursed, but the throne of God and of the Red meat force be in it, and his servants force be partial to him. They force see his front, and his name force be on their foreheads. And night force be no larger than. They force need no light of lamp or sun, for the Lady God force be their light, and they force regime at length and ever.(Image 21:22 - 22:5)