Letter to Dickinson

 

Dear Emily Dickinson,

I know that not many of your writings have been published, but I believe that you should publish many more of your writings. The ones that have been published have been an inspiration to me and I’m sure many other people. Imagine how many more people you could reach if you released more of your poems. I know that this world can be a scary place, but this could help many people to see that and do something about it.

Christians are called to be different and to be lights for God. If we sit at home all day and never go out, we can’t be a light. I’d encourage you to begin to step out of your comfort zone. With how good of a writer you are, you can do this by just publishing a few more poems. You really wouldn’t even have to leave your house. As your poems begin to build more and more fame, it may be a good idea to start leaving your house to show your boldness and bravery even more. All this can help set a fire in many people’s hearts who might have the same feelings about life as you.

You may feel like you are alone in this, but I can almost guarantee you that you are not. It just takes a little step of faith to see that you aren’t alone. This is another thing that Christians are called to do by God. Although the situation may look bleak, we have God on our side and we should feel confident taking that step. Maybe once that step is made, you can begin to make friends with people who have much in common with you. You can make a positive impact in their life and they might even be able to make a positive impact in your life as well. Remember, God has your back and won’t have you do this just to fail.

Sincerely,

Archibald Whitman

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Letter to Poe

Dear Edgar Allen Poe,

I am a huge admirer of your writings. You have captured me with your topics and your view on life. Although some may say it is too dark for people, I find it very intriguing. Most things today are written to make you feel good, but you are opposite of that. You see the truth and just present it from the other side of the spectrum. I have noticed that the afterlife was a common subject within your later works. As a Christian, I know that the afterlife is something not to be concerned with. When you trust in the Lord as your savior, you know that you are going to live eternal life in Heaven. You do not have to spend the rest of your life in hell.

From your writings, I also found that your interpretation of women was interesting. Seeing them as angelic figures is not too far off from what God created them as. He created them to be loved and taken care of by a man. I know that you sought to do this with the important women in your life. This is a wonderful things. Later in your life, however, you began to see women a different way. You turned to them to try and fill the hole left by Virginia. You weren’t searching for the next women that God had for you, if there was fit to be one, but you rather were searching for just pleasure.

I offer my deepest condolences for your mother, step-mother, and wife. I know how hard it must have been to lose them all to the same terrible disease. I hope that they were all believers and have had the pleasure of joining Jesus in Heaven. I know that after their deaths, especially your wife’s, you turned to drinking. This only offers a temporary fix to the sorrow you may be feeling. If they were believers, you should take comfort in the fact that they are in a better place and that one day you too can join with them again. Jesus offers you refuge in your sorrow so you do not need to be turning to drinking and gambling.

I know that your life has brought many hardships, from death to unsuccessfulness, but I would like to remind you once more that this things are only temporary. There is a Heaven where there will no longer be pain or suffering, but rather eternal joy. You can go to this place if you simply turn away from the things of this world and turn to God who is offering you a ticket into the kingdom of Heaven. I would like to highly encourage you to accept this offer. If you have any further questions, please feel free to reach out to me. I would love to spend more time telling you about the wonderful riches of heaven.

Sincerely,

Archibald Whitman

Emily Dickinson Commentary

In Emily Dickinson’s poem “A Word,” she speaks a very powerful message within a small poem.  It is so true that many people believe a word is “dead” when someone speaks it.  People can think this because when a person says a certain word, they may overuse it and there for cause it to die.  The exact opposite happens.  When someone says a word, they are truly bringing it to life.  That word was unspoken and hadn’t been brought into the light until the moment that it was spoken.  Also, depending on the word, it may become a common word amongst a conversation and there for live on even longer and have more life behind it.  I believe this is what Emily Dickinson was trying to convey in her poem.

To Lie or Not to Lie

Lying is outlined in the Bible as something God clearly does not want us to do. However, all people still do it.  People may lie for different reasons, but they are still guilty of disobeying God.  Different consequences come with different forms of lying.  Some of the most common forms of lying include not wanting to look bad in front of friends, wanting more benefits from the government, and not wanting to receive punishment from parents; and these lies result in people believing someone is not who he or she truly is, the possibility of arrest for lying on official documents, and the loss of trust with one’s parents.

Wanting to fit in and not be bullied for who you are has become a big deal in today’s culture.  People pretend to be someone they are not to avoid conflict or to gain friends.  It is very easy to do because people do not know what is truly going on inside of someone or who he or she truly is.  They often take people at face value, so all someone has to do is look like someone that that person isn’t.  However, people not only lying to those around them, but they are lying to themselves.  God created them with a specific image in mind, and when people go and change that just to fit in, it is disrespectful.  Also, if someone comes to find out that people are truly lying about who they say they are, then they could potentially lose even more friends and face more humiliation and bullying than they would have if they had just been their true self.  It is never a good idea to get in the wat of God’s perfect plan.

Lying can even be at a criminal level.  Every year, people who have received income must fill out tax returns.  With millions of people holding jobs, that is a lot of tax returns to go through.  Do people think the government has time to check every single one of these thoroughly to make sure no one lied on them?  Absolutely not.  It may take them years to find out; and by then, that person could be long gone and the government might never catch them.  This makes it very easy to lie on one of these forms, and it costs the government dearly.  LiveScience reports, “[T]he IRS says unreported income costs the U.S. Treasury $250 billion or more a year in lost taxes” (Britt).  That is a lot of money lost that if the government recovered could help get America out of debt, as well as help make the lives of people better.  Those people being the ones who have to lie on their tax returns so they can survive.  Granted, some just do it because they can and want the extra money.  The punishment for this lie can cost more than if the person had just told the truth.  The International Revenue Service states that someone who evades taxes “shall be imprisoned not more than 5 years, or fined not more than $250,000 for individuals ($500,000 for corporations), or both, together with the costs of prosecution” (“Related Statutes and Penalties–General Fraud”).  This is a perfect example of why it is not often worth it to lie.

It seems as if parents are the easiest to lie to. They put trust in their children because as a parent they want to trust their child.  They want to believe their children and they want to let their children to be free to mature.  However, the heart of a young adult is deceitful and rebellious.  Their parents may tell them not to do something, but that mostly ignites their passion to do that certain activity more and more.  The child will then go behind their parents back to accomplish what he or she wants to do.  Sneaking out to hang out with a boy or girl is something that a child will often do and this is something that the child will maybe regret later when their parents find out.  Sometimes kids are so clever that their parents never find out, and they never have to worry about it again.  If the child’s parents do find out, though, that child is going to face some harsh reality.  First off, the parents may become quite mad that their child did not obey their instruction.  Then there are the punishments for the child.  There are short term and long term punishments for the child.  The short term could include grounding or having things taken away.  The long term can be even more severe.  That child has now lost trust with his or her parents.  Now children may not be able to go out and do things with their friends that they used to do, even if those activities have good intentions.  The parent has no choice though because they want what is best for their child and want to protect the child from themselves.  Lying is very damaging to a relationship between parents and a child.

Sometimes lying can be done for the good of someone, such as lying about a present to help make the surprise that much better. However, it is still a lie and is still not something honorable to God.  So whether a person lies to their friends to avoid being picked on, only to be found out and receive harsher punishment, or to lie on tax returns and spend time in prison, or whether they lie to their parents and lose privileges, lying is never worth it.

Splash Zone

Water, the most abundant resource on Earth, is constantly changing forms and moving around.  You can pick any point in the water cycle to begin with. FiltersFast states that “[t]he water cycle describes the movement of water on, above and below the surface of the Earth.”  (“The Water Cycle: From Evaporation to Precipitation.”).  Water goes through many stages, from liquid, evaporating into condensation, coming back down to earth in rain or snow, then soaking back into the earth’s surface; and there it can either become water again or help a plant.

When in the ocean, water is a liquid.  The molecules have plenty of room to “swim” around because the oceans cover a large part of Earth.  Water is the most abundant resource on planet Earth.  It covers almost seventy percent of the earth’s surface.

Not all water stays in liquid form because it can evaporate into the earth’s atmosphere.  The molecules in the water are heated up by the sun or by underwater vents and volcanos.  The steam coming off the water rises into the sky.  When in the atmosphere, it collects into clouds where they take on the form of condensation.

Now that they are flying high in the atmosphere, they can overlook the place where they just were, as well as the places where they could potentially land in their next form.  One form in which they can return to the surface of the earth is water.  The particles become too heavy for the clouds to hold them, so they are released in rain.  This rain can either infiltrate the soil or run into rivers or lakes. The other form in which they can return to the surface is ice or snow. When they return to the surface as these, they can create packs and stay in one place until they are melted.  During the process of being melted, they can both turn into water and begin their journey down the mountain back to the ocean, or they can be evaporated back into the atmosphere once more in the form of steam.

Now that the particles have returned to Earth’s surface, they have a few more paths to choose from.  If the rain soaks into the earth, it has even more choices of roads it can take.  The water can seep back to the surface in springs or freshwater lakes or rivers.  Another road it can take is groundwater storage beneath the surface of the earth.  Once in these deep water storages, the hot core of the earth heats these large masses of water like a pot of water.  Just like steam is released when you boil water, these underground storages release steam through underwater vents and volcanos back into the ocean.  These very things were the reason these molecules were released into the atmosphere in the first place.

When in the surface of Earth, plants can suck water up through their roots and take the water molecules on a whole new journey.  When sucked up through the plants straw-like roots, the molecules can be turned into sugars or other molecules in the process of photosynthesis.  Another path within the plant releases water back into the atmosphere once again through the plants process of transpiration.

The other road I mentioned these molecules can take is seeping back to the surface in springs or lakes.  From here, the molecules reach even another fork in the road.  The molecules can heat up again from the sun and be released back into the atmosphere in the form of steam.  The molecules also have the choice of making their way through the rivers and lakes and back into the ocean where the cycle began.

When the molecules are in the lakes and rivers, they become nutrients for another species on earth, animals.  Animals can come and drink the water to help them survive.  Within the animal, the molecules go through the process of being excreted through the animal.  When the animal dies, the molecules can either be taken by another animal to go through the same process, they can soak into the earth, or they can be evaporated into the atmosphere.

Water particles can go through quite the journey in their lifetime. There are always so many different options the particles can choose to take (see Fig. 1).  Wherever they start, they can go from liquid, to vapor, to liquid again or ice, to soaking into the earth’s surface or soaking into plants.

 

Scratching the Surface

The United States is known for being one of the greatest countries on planet Earth. However, there are some characteristics about America that they share with another country.  China is very similar in some areas that make America so great.  So, is China right there behind the United States?  Looking deeper into the governments, the geography, and the culture will help better answer this question.

The governments of these two countries are run differently, but have aspects that resemble each other.  The United States has three branches that help keep the country functioning: the legislative, executive, and judicial.  Each branch is comprised of people appointed by the people of the country.   Each branch has its own responsibilities, but the other branches have powers that keep the other branches in check.  China is governed primarily by the Communist Party.  This party changes the country’s constitution as it sees fit.  Both countries are headed by a president who is a part of the executive branch.  They both also have constitutions that can be changed.  The United States created their Constitution in 1787, ten years after declaring their independence from Great Britain.  Under Great Britain, they were run by a monarchy.  Once the United States broke away from Great Britain and became a democratic republican nation, the citizens gained more freedoms, as well as more say in the government.  China only became a Communist nation after Moa Zedong declared it one in 1949.  Throughout the years, China has slowly lost its freedoms and say in the government and has become more corrupt.

When I used to think about the geography of China, I always just pictured a very flat country with not a lot of mountain ranges and not a lot of deserts. For the United States, I was able to picture very clearly all the different types of geography because I live here.  When I looked up the geography of China, I found that they also have large mountain ranges.  In fact, “[i]n the west of China there are the Himalayas, with some of the highest mountains in the world” (“Geography”).  I had no idea that these were located within the borders of China.  China also contains the Turfan Depression which is comparable to Death Valley in the United States.  Both are the lowest points in the countries, thus being the hottest.  Both of the countries also contain tropical regions, with that coming in the form of rain forests in the southern part of China and in the form of Hawaii for the United States.  The one thing I definitely did not expect China to have was tundra areas. The northern part of China that is close to Russia becomes very cold in the winter.  Thus, both countries have very similar and diverse geographies.

While the geography of these two nations is very similar, the cultures tend to vary much more.  Beginning with language, the United States has no official language, but almost every language is spoken within the United States.  In China, however, “the official national language of China is Pŭtōnghuà, a type of Mandarin spoken in the capital Beijing” (Zimmermann).  Another big difference in the cultures is religion.  The United States is a very tolerant country; and similar to languages, many different religions are practiced within the United States.  In China, however, there are five official religions, and any other religion practiced is considered illegal.  The Chinese Constitution states that people are granted the right of freedom of religion, but the government has ignored this.  Christians, as well as other religions, are largely persecuted.  Many people are killed for their faiths and often time, meet in secret to avoid this.  Two things that tend to have some similarities are celebrations and holidays.  Both countries celebrate the New Year with large celebrations.  They also both celebrate birthdays of important people that helped shape the country into what they are today.  The people of these different countries will be raised differently because of the diversely different cultures.

Both of these countries are unique in their own ways.  They each have people or areas that help define them.  When you look beneath the surface, however, you find that they both have more in common than one would imagine.  Government, geography, and culture are all big areas that give the country character, but some other characteristics are similar to each other.