Deepest Worry: Where are you?

This is just an outline:

That terror call at night…informing of an accident

Where are you going?  Parents asks child.

When a parent dies, children as Where are you going?  To answer this as a parent is one of the most loving things a parent can do for their child.

CEO Compensation

I am a capitalist to the core.  I believe in free market.  I understand that this is not a ‘perfect’ system, but I do not see any other system that does the most good for the most people and gives incentives for those to create and prosper.

What I do not understand is how many CEO’s can make millions of dollars AFTER they drive a company into the ground.  I believe in rewarding profit  and positive performance (yes, even in the millions) but not rewarding poor performance.

Furthermore how do BOARDS allow this to happen while shareholders are getting the short end of the stick?  Boards who give incentives for performance is appreciated, but in times of loss, how do they have the conscious and lack fiduciary responsibility to shareholders for these atrocities .  I’ve heard the argument that ‘we won’t attract the best talent if we don’t offer these incentives.”  I call that total bull shirt!  There is no way the managers of a company would allow their underlings to get paid a bonus if they screwed up!

Something needs to change!  I’m pissed.  This is NOT a free market capitalist concept to reward failure.



Rights of Passage: Cultural Comparisons

This is my book idea:  Looking into different Rights of Passage in several different cultures.

Overview:  Distinct cultural praxis and nuance are most often apparent in commemorations of life stage transitions. Ritual, artifacts, and beliefs can overtly manifest at a birth of  a child, birthdays, coming of age, graduations, anniversaries,  courtship, weddings, retirement,  funerals, etc. Each culture has its own expression during these milestones.

It would be a fun study to bring these to the light and also help serve as a guide to become more culturally proficient.

Normalization of Praxis

One of my oldest friendships asked me a profound question: “What has been normalized in your church that might not be Christ-like or biblically based? And, do you feel free to question those practices, values, structures, and traditions? (This is an open-ended question that has been heavy in my heart for decades.)”

I’ve been pondering this since you sent it and as I saw your email and FB post.  I am just putting down some bullet points because each of the thoughts but could become a book if thought through.  I’m not sure what your objective in this is, but I would like to dialogue with the points if you’d like… I kind of like this stuff!. As I got into this list and thought a bit more about it, it feels like I could be posting on the new 95 Thesis on the Wittenberg Door!

I get to openly and freely question and dialogue about these issues with friends, colleagues, and within the Church.  Some areas of personal theology and praxis are continuing to evolve in my own life.  I have seen some of these issues change with in the church.  Here are a few of my thoughts…This list may grow (on my blog)

  1. Churches as buildings.  I get that we need places to meet and gather, but I think we have been too absorbed and vested in funding buildings that are under-utilized most of the week.  I totally get the stewardship/investment argument but we may have been sucked trap.  If we must build a building, maybe create a space that the community can use the rest of the week.
  2. Musical Worship:  I see many people connect deeply through musical worship, but sometimes this has become so formulaic that it almost becomes an idol.  Pretty songs, pretty stage, pretty lights, pretty people…sometimes this makes me gag.  When we come together as the church, I appreciate being intentional and deliberate, but sometimes I feel disconnected in the flashy and cheesy.  I understand people have differents ways to connect…so I am not throwing all of this out, but we have to evaluate what we do.
  3. Ordination:  I affirm having some standards for elders, teachers, and apostles, etc., but the process of ordination and the term ‘Reverend’ have been usurped by human made institutions. Even though the US prides of self on the separation of church and state, ordination has been closely associated with who is allowed particular benefits from the government (ie. taxation issues).  Ordination has been used to filter who gets privileges and benefits.
  4. Denominations:  I can live with the freedom to associate (congregate) with like minded thinkers, but when those become siloed, the turn into denominations that flaunt distinctiveness.
  5. Sunday vs Sabbath:  Do I need to say more?
  6. Dropping of a liturgical calendar:  sounds contarty to my comments on denominations/ordination, but the Bible celebrates a seasonal rhythm of life.  The protestant church has really left this behind.
  7. Value of independence vs interdependence:  This is a western  and especially a US value.
  8. Para-Church vs Church:  there really is no distinction
  9. “Appropriate age for marriage”:  I still believe Scripture still teaches ‘keeping the marriage bed Holy,” but our biological clocks do not match with societal views on marriage and family.  We  applaud the western notion of a nuclear family, but Scripture seems indicate more an extended family model.  I am in favor that we reaffirm kids getting married earlier and restructure households to become multigenerational again.

On Guns

I own guns.  Some are beautiful historical pieces and some are functional.

One of the reasons I own guns is what the government “can do” and “can’t do.”

What the government “can” do.

Part of the original arguments of the Second Amendment was to bring some balance of power to the people in relationship to the power of the state.  The framers of the constitution who lived under tyranny understood that the common population would be “subject’ to the government if that government would be only entity to bear arms.  The government can easily take away it citizens rights if it only fears the vote…  The government ‘can’ take away rights, but a populace with strength can more easily force a democratic and protect it from a tyrannical solution.  I trust the government….sort of.  Having the right to bear arms helps insure that.

What the government “can’t do.”

The government cannot always be there for me in a time if crisis.  There have been a few situations in my home and traveling where it was nice to know that I could have the option to defend myself if needed.  In calling the police, even in haste, too them way to long to respond.  Knowing that I could have protected my self avoided me from becoming a victim.

If you experienced the LA Riots or any other public disturbance, you in fact know how alone you were.  In time of significant turmoil, the government can’t be there for you.  The practicality of caring for your family is unfortunately necessary.

I am not saying that YOU have to get a gun…but what I am saying, is that I continue to be a proponent of having the right to bear arms.  I also support some reasonability of proving gun ownership such as background checks, mental stability, competence training, and type of fire arm.



Hawaii False Missile Alert

January 13, 2018 8:07am

38 minutes later, “false alarm” was issued.

2018 Hawaii missile alert.jpg

I cannot imagine what went through your minds during those precious 38 minutes.  This is no joke, and I am deeply sorry what you went though. What I’d like to know is what did your pray during those precious minutes?  How did the impeding doom shape what you thought about life, faith, family and friends.

Did you pray “God, “Please let this not happen?”  Do you ever wonder like me if He actually answered our prayers, but we really don’t even know it?

Patriotic Sin?

Today and people are condemning being patriotic regarding the all the issues surrounding kneeling during the National Anthem.  I am perplexed about this.  I get the protests and using seemingly the only voice that NFL players have, but when other religious types affirm this action and link patriotism to idolatry I cringe.

When Scripture is usurped by our flag or even our constitution, and used in the ‘name’ of God we break at least two commandments.  Put no other gods before me and take the Lord’s name in vain but I see a clear distinction of respect, honor, and pride juxtaposed to idolatry.

As an Asian American follower of Jesus, I can clearly function in a society, with a theological clear conscious, when I am in relationship (commune/fellowship, Im searching for a word to use) a community of  Buddhist, Hindi, non-believer, et. al., and still respect their practices, beliefs and culture even though I don’t agree with them.  I can freely navigate veneration without worship.  Respect to that community gives me a platform to share my allegiance to Christ.

Now as for rights to kneel:

Yes, they have the ‘right to kneel’ in protest, but the ‘companies’ they work for also have the ‘right’ to define how players conduct themselves.  This is the beauty of free a market and they are beholden to the market and not the government on this issue.  We’ll see how the power of free market effects the NFL’s franchise to keep both customers and sponsors.

Now for the first time in my life, I look forward to the NBA to see how they will navigate this…

Afterthought:  Last night 9/29/2017 I attended the Long Beach Poly and Wilson High School football game.  I saw a very broad ethnic demographic on the field and in the stands.  During the National Anthem, there was a respectful hush…I only perceived one person not standing…he was a photographer laying down to get a better video angle of all the boys with helmets off and standing with respect…

No I idolatry here…just one nation under God.

TahmiJoh’s Core Memories

Yes, this is inspired by the movie “Inside Out” (2015).  One concept that really struck me was about “Core Memories” and if we lose them, we lose our a significant part of our identity.  I’m going to capture some of these by chronology and categories.

0-4 Years:

  • Stepping on a bee and getting stung.  North side of Bellefontaine house.
  • Pooping on the south side of porch.  I remember knocking frantically on the door and no one answered…do I had to do what I had to do.  Later I learned that Mike had to clean it up!  I do remember the shovel!
  • Japanese Garden in front, visiting the nursing home next to us, the trees, some of the houses on Bellefontaine. Flying the toy airplane in the Huntington Hospital Parking lot.
  • 3 or so, getting shocked after putting the key in the outlet at Garfield.  I remember the blue flash and brunette fingers.   I remember the round light fixtures in the classroom and hall way.
  • Razor on my left pinky…still have the scar.  Uncle Sei didn’t hid that too well!
  • Seeing my dad work in the ‘basement office.  Smell of ammonia from blue print machine.
  • The shed in the back by the swing set with all that junk….including a ‘bowling’ arcade game that I couldn’t use.  Was there a huge eucalyptus tree by the gas pumps?
  • Riding Trikes, playing with corn starch, naps at Special 4 and pre-school
  • Burying Catharine or a puppy in the garden (southside of driveway).  Growing sweetpeas near there
  • Dad getting hit in the head with the crane ball when lifting a sego tree.
  • That trailer for the tractor and how it pivoted when you got to the end.  And also remember when it fell and now I have a scar on my left cheek.
  • Dr. Ogawa for stitches…
  • Christmas in my crib
  • Asking for a bottle
  • Staple in my finger but I didn’t cry
  • Surf fishing with dad
  • The smell of his clothes and that weird hard hat
  • Fishing in the ponds at Descanso Gardens with Mike….caught blue gill
  • LA Count Fair and me being dressed in a Kellogue  Fertilizer Costume (per dad).  Getting lost there…
  • The green kitchen table
  • Getting poked at grandpa or grandma’s burial service by a wire
  • Mochizuki and cleaning ducks in the backyard
  • Someone shooting out the back of the station waggon
  • Sliding down freshly folded news papers right before cousins delivered them on their paper route.
  • Riding the tractor with dad at Bamiko’s
  • Gardening routes, sprinkler main at Altadena Presbyterian, Trailer park development (Especially Carson).  Cutting my hand on alfalfa there.
  • 2nd Street office…”Imperial Mobile Estates
  • Red quarters used for washing machine repairs
  • The Elkaim’s apartment.
  • Hanging out with Troop 41 on outings.  Mr. Skinner, “watermelon creek.”  Baths on the tail gate.  Getting burnt at ???Hot Springs.
  • Perch derbies and Santa Barbara
  • “Barbara” my mythical friend
  • Rose Parade on the back of the truck.
  • Fishing on the pier…with no rails

5-8 years

  • Red rug in the TV room
  • The yard full of plants and watering them from the top and bottom.
  • The Honda 50 in the back yard next to the fertilizer stacks.  The smell of DTD in the garage.
  • Snoopy Room!
  • Oshogatsu at our house
  • Going to Union Church and singing in the Sunday school hall.  Playing with the office safe with Jon Toriumi.  Miss Kakimi helping with my penmanship.
  • Walking to Jefferson Primary: Miss May (1st), Mrs. Montgomery (2nd), Mrs. Markarian (3rd)   Nancy Udder and Halloween.  Donna Brennen and in the Jungle
  • Watching the old Jefferson building getting torn down and building the new one in its place.  Mr. Bronson’s owls and paddle.




Using Science for Ironic Logic

I’ve been noticing some militant camps that use ‘scientists’ to back up their claims, but both have agendas that cloud interpretations.

Advocates for vaccines use scientists to back their position, while dismissing scientists that point to climate change due to human activity.

Conversely, advocates for climate change use scientists to back their position, while dismissing scientists that point to vaccines as an essential tool in public health.


Blog at

Up ↑