Sunday, February 27, 2011

People around me

I was reminded again of the ending part of Lewis's "The Weight of Glory": " All day long we are, in some degree, helping each other to one or the other of these destinations [meaning heaven or hell]....There are no ordinary people."  I know wrote about this before but it just seems so important and something I really lose track of.  There are no insignificant people.  I can't just dodge people I feel uncomfortable being around.  Another thing I've been thinking about is being in a Christian community.  At Calvin College, I have all these people who are like-minded in the sense that they are pursuing a relationship with God.  Bonhoeffer says, "It is not simply to be taken for granted that the Christian has the privilege of living among other Christians....It is true, of course, that what is an unspeakable gift of God for the lonely individual is easily disregarded and trodden under foot by those who have the gift every day.  It is easily forgotten that the fellowship of Christian brethren is a gift of grace, a gift of the Kingdom of God that any day may be taken from us, that the time that still separates us from utter loneliness may be brief indeed.  Therefore, let him who until now has had the privilege of living a common Christian life with other Christians praise God's grace from the bottom of his heart."   I have such an opportunity here, to fellowship, to have people to support me, and for me to support, to have this community.  I feel like I haven't been taking good advantage of that.  This is kind of a hard thing for me, stepping out and initiating but when will I have this same  blessing around me?

Here is a big excerpt from "The Weight of Glory".  I found reading it aloud helped it stick and grow in my mind.  Just let God speak to you in whatever way He wants.

"The load, or weight, or burden of my neighbour's glory should be laid daily on my back, a load so heavy that only humility can carry it, and the back so f the proud will be broken.  It is a serious thing to live in a society of possible gods and goddesses, to remember that the dullest and most uninteresting person you talk to may one day be a creature which, if you saw it now, you would be strongly tempted to worship, or else a horror and a corruption such as you now meet, if at all, only in a nightmare.  All day long we are, in some degree, helping each other to one or the other of these destinations.  It is in the light of these overwhelming possibilities, it is with the awe and the circumspection proper to them, that we should conduct all our dealings with one another, all friendships, all loves, all play, all politics.  There are no ordinary people.  You have never talked to a mere mortal.  Nations, cultures, arts, civilization - these are mortal, and their life is to ours as the life of a gnat.  But it is immortals whom we joke with, work with, marry, snub, and exploit - immortal horrors or everlasting splendours.  This does not mean that we are to be perpetually solemn.  We must play.  But our merriment must be of that kind (and it is, in fact, the merriest kind) which exists  between people who have, from the the outset, taken each other seriously - no flippancy, no superiority, no presumption.  And our charity must be a real and costly love, with deep feeling for the sins in spite of which we love the sinner - no mere tolerance or indulgence which parodies love as flippancy parodies merriment.  Next to the Blessed Sacrament itself, your neighbour is the holiest object presented to your senses.  If he your Christian neighbour he is holy in almost the same way, for in him also Christ vere latitat - the glorifier and the glorified, Glory Himself, is truly hidden."

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Integrative Essay

Erica Chan
DCM – C.S. Lewis
Profs. Ribeiro
Joy in the Journey

Joy.  This seemed to be a common theme throughout interim class.  Joy has been a rather difficult thing because sometimes I can be too serious, but I was surprised in the many places and ways joy can manifest itself.
We should find joy in our work, in our calling, our vocation.  God has called us to many different roles in life, whether it is a daughter, a mother, a sister, a teacher, the family snow plower.  In every aspect, whatever our calling, we should be “working as unto the Lord”, as it says in Colossians.  To work unto the Lord, we should be “doing well a thing that is well worth doing” (Sayers); we should be enjoying your work for the work itself, not what rewards we will receive upon completing the task.  Joy can be found by doing “the work for which he is fitted by nature…and in the fulfillment of his own nature, and in contemplation of the perfection for his work” (Sayers). We find joy because the work fits us.  In working solely for the work, we are put our skill and talents to use.  Because we know these are God’s, not ours, all praise goes to Him. We can have the satisfaction of having done our best, stewarded God’s gifts, and served His kingdom.  I like Even when we are doing so-called unimportant things, we can find joy because they build character and we know it is preparing us for our future callings.  As Plantinga says in Engaging God’s World, we learn the skills in order to have more freedom and more ability to solve the problems that come your way (130).
In preparation, for our work, we often learn these skills through education.  While skills and education are necessary for future occupations, one must pursue learning simply for the sake of learning.  As Lewis says in “Our English Syllabus”, a college student’s “business is to pursue knowledge” (85).  People may question the importance of learning and the joy found in it, when there seem to be more important and entertaining things to do that overshadow learning.  Students wonder why they must sit through a boring professor’s lecture or why they must still be in a lab at 9:00pm. Joy is found by learning about “’What do I most want to know?’” (Lewis, Our English Syllabus).  By delving deeply into a topic, we can marvel at God’s handiwork, his creation, his greatness.  Learning can be a duty, our work, our calling, which is glorifying to God, because “an appetite for these things exists in the human mind, and God makes no appetite in vain.  We can therefore pursue knowledge as such, and beauty, as such, in the sure confidence that by so doing we are either advancing to the vision of God ourselves or indirectly helping others to do so” (Lewis, Learning in War-Time).
In light of these two things, learning and our future occupations, college students struggle to find the balance.  Sometimes they can go together, but especially in our economic times, it is more difficult for most people.  They worry about the future.  Well, basically everyone worries about tomorrow.  But as Christ says in Matthew, “But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself.”  We do not have to worry because we know God is in control.  Instead, we should focus on the present, or eternity, like Lewis describes in Letter XV of The Screwtape Letters:
He therefore, I believe, wants them to attend chiefly to two things, to eternity itself, and to that point of time which they call the Present. For the Present is the point at which time touches eternity. Of the present moment, and of it only, humans have an experience analogous to the experience which our Enemy has of reality as a whole; in it alone freedom and actuality are offered them. He would therefore have them continually concerned either with eternity (which means being concerned with Him) or with the Present—either meditating on their eternal union with, or separation from, Himself, or else obeying the present voice of conscience, bearing the present cross, receiving the present grace, giving thanks for the present pleasure."

We cannot always plan ahead because God can do some crazy things in our lives.  was reading Choosing to See by Mary Beth Chapman, and she listed three things she said she would never do: adopt, home school, and speak in public.  But God led her to do those very things, and she has received many blessings and also been a blessing to others as a result of her obedience to God.  By focusing on the present, we can find joy.  “Happy work is best done by the man who takes his long-term plans somewhat lightly and works from moment to moment ‘as to the Lord’.  It is only our daily bread that we are encouraged to ask for.  The present is the only time in which any duty can be done or any grace received (Lewis, Learning in War-Time).  The question we should be asking is not “What am I going to do tomorrow?”  but “What am I going to do today to grow? What am I doing to glorify God and encourage others along in their journey as well?”
            Plantinga describes each person has having responsibility over a little kingdom within God’s big kingdom.  In order to best serve God’s kingdom, we have to work with our neighbors and develop true friendships.  We cannot find joy in longing to be part of some group simply to be a part of it because “as long as you are governed by that desire you will never get what you want….The quest of the Inner Ring will break you hearts unless you break it” (Lewis, The Inner Ring).  Instead, we can find joy by choosing to spend time with people simply because we enjoy spending time with time.  We can find joy by running “the race marked out for us”, helping others to “throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles”, as the author of Hebrews writes.  As Lewis describes in The Screwtape Letters, it is easy for a person to not realize they are wandering from the narrow road; they only have this “vague, though, uneasy, feeling that he hasn’t been doing very well lately.”  But as fellow brothers and sisters in Christ, it is our job to keep each other accountable.  We can find joy by sharing in their happiness and sorrows, in helping each other live in Christ and grow in grace. 
All this joy is a result of surrendering to Christ.  It is when our will is given to God’s that it “becomes truly creative and truly our own when it is wholly God’s” (Problem of Pain 101).  This is shalom, “the way things are supposed to be” (Plantinga 15). And we will only have shalom when Christ returns, when we can finally enter the pearly gates.  Even when we are joyous here on Earth, it will not compare to the joy found in heaven.  Here, we long for something that we can only see glimpses of in this world, in a glorious piece of music, on a hike through the mountains, in uncontainable falling-off-the chair, belly busting laughter.
These things – the beauty, the memory of our own past – are good images of what we really desire; but if they are mistaken for the thing itself they turn into dumb idols, breaking the hearts of their worshippers.  For they are not the thing itself; they are only the scent of a flower we have not found, the echo of a tune we have not heard, news from a country we have never yet visited” (Lewis, Weight of Glory).

That country is heaven.  There in heaven we will be able to “be united with the beauty we see, to pass into it, to receive it into ourselves, to bathe in it, to become part of it.”  No longer will we just look at the beauty; we will be able to look along it.  We will be able to experience glory, “good report with God, acceptance, by God, response, acknowledgement, and welcome into the heart of things” (Weight of Glory).  We will be able to experience the wonderful pleasure and joy of praise from God; we will be able “to be a real ingredient in the divine happiness…to be loved by God...delighted in as an artist delights in his work or a father in a son.”   Heaven will be a place where we can be healed from all our pain, sorrow, and suffering and filled with joy for “the whole man is to drink joy from the fountain of joy” (Weight of Glory).
And for us this is the end of all the stories, and we can most truly say that they all lived happily ever after. But for them it was only the beginning of the real story. All their life in this world and all their adventures in Narnia had only been the cover and the title page: now at last they were beginning Chapter One of the Great Story which no one on earth has read: which goes on forever: in which every chapter is better than the one before.

-C.S. Lewis, The Last Battle

Works Cited

Holy Bible: New International Version. Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 2006. N. pag. Print.

Lewis, C.S. “The Inner Ring.” Print.

Lewis, C.S. “Learning in War-Time”. Print.

Lewis, C.S. “Our English Syllabus.” Print.
Lewis, C. S. The Problem of Pain,. New York: Macmillan, 1944. Print.

Lewis, C.S. The Screwtape Letters. New York: The Macmillan Company, 1958. N. pag. Print.

Lewis, C.S. "The Weight of Glory." Print.

Plantinga Jr., Cornelius. Engaging God's World: A Reformed Vision of Faith, Learning, and Living. Grand Rapids, MI: William B. Eerdmans Publishing Company, 2002. N. pag.  Print.

Sayers, Dorothy.  “Why Work?”. Print. 

Monday, January 24, 2011

Why Work?

By Dorothy Sayers

The writer describes work "as a way of life, in which the nature of man should find its proper exercise and delight and so fulfill it to the glory of God.  That it thought of as a creative activity undertaken for the love of the work itself...." People "should make things...for the sake of doing well a thing that is well worth doing."   She argues "we should ask of an enterprise, not 'will it pay?' but 'is it good?'; of a man, not 'what does he make?' but 'what is his work worth?'; of goods, not 'Can we induce people to buy them?' but 'are they useful things well made?'; of employment, not 'how much a week?' but 'will it exercise my faculties to the utmost?'"  Her reasoning is that "work is the natural exercise and function of man" and as an offering to God, we should do our work well.

Sayers asks some very good questions.  I really like her comparison of work to a hobby because we do not gain monetary reward from doing it; it is simply the satisfaction and joy of doing it. 

"Work is not, primarily, a thing one does to live, but the thing one lives to do." Because of this, we should a) not focus on our wages, as long as we receive enough to keep on working because our reward is found in working; b) do, and have others do, what job/work we are best suited to; c) not think of our work as something to get done so we can have "leisure" but to enjoy it; d) fight for the "quality of the work that we do" - is it honest, beautiful, or useful? 

I agree with Sayers on the purpose of work but as to wages, one must make sure they are making ends meet.  She had a different way of looking at leisure, that it should be "the period of changed rhythm that refreshed us for the delightful purpose of getting on with our work."  I always thought of people doing their jobs because it was their job, even if it was enjoyable.  I never thought of fighting to produce a good product, of going beyond doing your job well to making sure what you are doing is beneficial. 

Sayers argues that the Church should view work as sacred because people are called to serve God in their work, not to separate their work and their Christian lives.  In order to serve God, we first have to make sure our work is done well, "that work is true in itself, to itself, to the standards of its own technique....The only Christian work is good work well done."  Because the work is an expression of a person, the work of a Christian will "naturally be turned to Christian ends." 

One must have integrity with their work.  God wants us to be faithful, and this is one way of doing it.  I'm not sure if I agree with the last sentence of the previous paragraph because sometimes a Christian's work, though it is done with good intentions, can lead to bad results, or un-Christian results.  If they forget to take some things into consideration, it can mislead people or have bad results. 

Lastly, Sayers argues that we should serve God before serving the community.  So in our work, we have to serve it, not the community or else you be distracted by questioning what others think of your work, you might think people owe you for your work, and you will only serve the community's wants, which is always changing, instead of doing good work. 

This relates back to "Learning in War-Time" where Lewis talks about learning as our duty.  Here, our job, our work, is our duty to God.  Plantinga, in his chapter "Vocation" also emphasizes the idea of finding what God has called you to, and doing the best job you can.  Also, in "The Weight of Glory", Lewis says "if God is satisfied with the work, the work may be satisfied with itself" (work meaning each person).  One still has to remember that while you want to do your job well, you must not be so focused on it so you ignore other people or other responsibilities, other callings God has for you.

Joining in the Dance

 I found this poem and gave my sister a copy of it for Christmas.  Dr. Ribeiro was talking about joining in the holy dance, and this seemed fitting:

Instruments (1)  By Madeleine L’Engle

The sky is strung with glory.
Light threads from star to star
from sun to sun
a living harp.
I rejoice, I sing, I leap upwards to play.
The music is in light.
My fingers pluck the vibrant strings;
the notes pulse, throb, in exultant harmony;
I beat my wings against the strands
that reach across the galaxies
I pla


It is not I who play
it is the music
the music plays itself
is played
plays me
small part of an innumerable
I am flung from note to note
impaled on melody
my wings are caught on throbbing filaments of light
the wild cords cut my pinions
my arms are outstretched
are bound by ropes of counterpoint
I am cross-eagled on the singing that is strung
from pulsing star
to flaming sun

I burn in a blaze of song.

The Problem of Pain: Ch. 6- Human Pain

The pain Lewis talks about in this chapter is "any experience, whether physical or mental, which the patient dislikes" and is synonymous with "'suffering', 'anguish', 'tribulation', adversity', or 'trouble'."  He says "the proper good of a creature is to surrender itself to its Creator" so we human beings as God's creation should be surrendering ourselves to God.  However, Lewis describes us as "rebels who must lay down our arms" because we find that "to surrender a self-will inflamed and swollen with years of usurpation is a kind of death"; we won't do it unless we find something wrong with our own will.  I found it interesting how Lewis says surrendering ourselves to God is "good".  I had never really connected this idea of surrendering to God and the concept of good and evil.  But it's true, apart from God, we cannot be good.

Lewis goes on to describe three purposes for pain:

1). "God whispers to us in our pleasures, speaks in our conscience, but shouts in our pain; it is His megaphone to rouse a deaf world."  Pain is God's tool to alert people know when something is wrong, either their actions or their surroundings. "A bad man, happy, is a man without the least inkling that his actions do not 'answer', that they are not in accord with the laws of the universe....But pain gives the only opportunity the bad man can have for amendment.  It removes the veil; it plants the flag of truth within the fortress of a rebel soul."  I had never thought of pain as giving a chance for people.  I guess it would be considered pain when someone rebukes or corrects you.  Sometimes you dislike the correction, but in the end it makes you confront and change yourself.

2).  Pain is used to show we cannot be self-sufficient; we have to depend on God.  If life if good, people don't recognize their need for Christ, that all their blessings could be gone and ultimately, God is the only One who will be there. Maybe the normal family that doesn't hurt anyone experience pain so they depend on Christ all the more.  Lewis describes a quality of God which he calls "Divine humility".  "[God] stoops to conquer. He will have us even though we have shown that we prefer everything else to Him, and come to Him because there is 'nothing better' now to be had."

This reminded of some verses from James 1: "Consider it pure joy, my brothers, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith develops perseverance."  By facing hard times, we can grow stronger in our faith.  God's Divine humility struck me because it shows how patient God is. God will still accept us and love us even though He is our last resort before Hell.  It shows how He is willing to be ignored, to wait on us, until we can figure out with our stupid minds that He is the only one we can depend on and there is no way we can survive on our own. 

The third use of pain is to know when we have chosen to follow God's will.  Before the Fall, what we enjoyed doing was what doing things for God's sake.  "Pleasure was then an acceptable offering to God because offering was a pleasure."  But after the Fall, our desires often ignore God.  If our pleasure is the thing God wants us to do but we don't do it because it is God's will, "it remains a happy coincidence.  We cannot therefore know that we are acting at or, or primarily for God's sake, unless the material of the action is contrary to our inclinations, or (in other words) painful, and what we cannot know that we are choosing, we cannot choose.  The full acting out of the self's surrender to God therefore demands pain: this action, to be perfect, must be done from the pure will to obey, in the absence, or in the teeth, of inclination."

Again, I had never thought of this application of pain.  It was really interesting how Lewis describes the before and after of the Fall.  But if you have the perfect relationship with God, then you will want to do what He commands.  I agree with Lewis that pain is definitely an indicator for God's will.  And yet, I don't think every time we choose to follow God's will, pain is a part of it.  Nobody is perfect, but I think there are people who have reached a point in their faith where they find pleasure in doing what God says, just because it is His will, at least some of the time. 

"Human will becomes truly creative and truly our own when it is wholly God's, and this is one of the many senses in which he that loses his soul shall find it."  This is totally opposite of what one thinks; one usually thinks holding on tighter will give them the ability to control their life. 

A question I was thinking about is whether pain is evil.  Is it something that is evil that God turned for good?  I don't think I mean pain, in Lewis's sense, in which we dislike it, but where it hurts us? 

*Reminder: Lewis is talking about Pain as any experience, whether physical or mental, which the patient dislikes" and is synonymous with "'suffering', 'anguish', 'tribulation', adversity', or 'trouble'."

Friday, January 21, 2011

Vocation in the Kingdom of God

Ch. 5 by Plantinga

I found it interesting how Plantinga talks about each of us having our own little kingdom within God's kingdom.  I had always thought of us being just a servant in God's kingdom.  I guess this gives us more of a sense of responsibility, this area I have to take care of.

A vocation is what a person is called to do.  One person can have many vocations, such as father, lawyer, elder, son, and coach.  These vocations all fall under the vocation of serving the Lord.  Plantinga lays out questions lays out questions one should ask when looking for a career: 
"Where in the kingdom does God want me to work?  Where are the needs great?  Where are the workers few?...How honest is the work I'm thinking of doing?  How necessary and how healthy are the goods or services I would help provide? How smoothly could I combine my proposed career with being a spouse, if that's also my calling, or a parent, or a faithful child of aging parents?  How close would I be to a church in which I could give and take nourishment?"  Is my job going to result in me conquering less evil than I take in? 
While I do not think one should compromise his standards, I thought some of these questions seemed really ideal because there are always circumstances which stop you, for example the current economy, distance, people you need to care for, the lack of money.  Then I saw how Plantinga said we should also consider how it goes with our other vocations, especially those related to other people.  Maybe ultimately you are to become a doctor, but at this point in time, you are called to be a waiter, in order to fill the needs of your family.  A part of this chapter was on the idea of doing our best whatever the calling is, even in the small mundane tasks.

A problem I have had with the discussion on vocation is how do you know what God is calling you to?  I know that right now, my calling is to be a student, to "prepare for further calling", as Plantinga says, but I have no clue, nor much idea how to find out, what that exactly is.  

Plantinga discusses the difference between a secular and Christian college education. Most Christians in secular education will have a harder time developing a Christian philosophy, or worldview on everything in life, and will not take the time to differentiate between good and evil on campus and develop such a philosophy whereas a student in a Christian college will have their faith integrated into their learning.  He warns the Christian-college attending student to be wary of just going with the flow and to really think about what you are learning, to push yourself out of your safe zone.  While I agree a secular education has many difficulties that a Christ-centered education does not, I have found we, at Calvin, get caught up in work and don't have time to think about our own Christian philosophy, just like the secular student.  For example, our floor class was focused on origins of this world.  It was supposed to present different views, give people a better understanding of what those views are exactly, and to promote discussion.  One of the things I discovered is that it didn't help get any closer to finding out what I believed. 

Plantinga talks about how knowledge, skills, and virtues are necessary to fulfilling our vocation.  I like Plantinga's description of skills as "'how to' disciplines that...require a certain amount of sweat and repetition, and then yield some wonderful freedoms" and his comparison of this idea to a jazz musician.  By learning the skills and having discipline, the basics, the jazz musician has the freedom to improvise.  A student will be able to use the skills they have learned and apply it new ways and to different problems.  Virtues I feel are less emphasized in society but play a huge part.  A person who slacks off but is extremely knowledgeable or skillful may end up being of less value than a person who is very diligent, doing the best he can, and sets out to learn everything they can about the job.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Man or Rabbit?

"Can't you lead a good life without believing in Christianity?" Lewis said one should never ask this question because that means you are not considering if Christianity is true or not; you simply want whatever is most helpful to you. Lewis argues we cannot avoid the question of whether Christianity is true or not.  If we just try to ignore it because we don't want to think about it or the consequences when one does find out about it, we are "shirking....[We are] in a state of dishonest error, and that dishonesty will spread through all his thoughts and actions: a certain shiftiness, a vague worry in the background, a blunting of [our] whole mental edge, will result."  Lewis says such a person is "an ostrich, hiding its head in the sand", not a Man.

Lewis was especially convicting when he seemed to be talking about things he himself did: "evade the Son of Man, to look the other way, to pretend you haven't noticed, to become suddenly absorbed in something on the other side of the street, to leave the receiver off the telephone because it might be He who was ringing up, to leave unopened certain letters in a strange handwriting because they might be from Him....."  After reading this, I was like "Ahhhh.  That's me."  Not about pursuing Christianity's credibility but about other problems I need to face such as choosing majors, greeting people I don't really know, or just things I don't want to find the result of.  But I can't put things off because I simply do not like doing them because I will end up doing them anyways.  I find that if I try to ignore things, it ends up catching to me.  And when I just start out avoiding a couple of things, I get into the habit of doing so, like Lewis said.  It also applies when I know I am sinning and/or not being the best steward of my time, but I try to come up with some excuse for it.

A point brought up in class was errors or sins found in others.  Dr. Ribeiro talked about how she would try to avoid seeing them because she didn't want to confront others.  I found myself doing the same thing sometimes.  Or if I do see it, I don't want to do anything for fear of insulting them or not wanting to cause trouble.  But God has called us to watch out for others and correct them in love, in order to help them grow; it is our responsibility. Lewis emphasizes this: "Knowledge of the facts must make a difference to one's actions."  I have failed at living this out because I know of God's grace and love, I know what He has commanded me, but often it doesn't influence my actions.  I need to live it out, on Christ's strength.
I like how Lewis doesn't want to give us an answer to whether you should be a Christian.  He says, "Here is a door, behind which, according to some people, the secret of the universe is waiting for you."  He wants you to search for it yourself.  "Isn't it obviously the job of every man (that is a man and not a rabbit) to try to find out which, and then to devote his full energies either to serving this tremendous secret or to exposing and destroying this gigantic humbug?"  It seems the problem today is that most young people don't care what others believe.  Something I heard often in high school was, "This is what I believe.  It's okay for you to believe whatever you want to." Or there was just a general ignorance about religion.  I remember in a high school literature class, we were discussing allusions to the Bible, and I was astounded to see the Biblical illiteracy.  What surprised me more was the general apathy to anything even religious.  One of my classmates asked, "This stuff is just myths, right? Science has already proved all this wrong, I thought."  They hadn't even bothered to think about it for themselves and just took what people said as truth, which was discussed in "Our English Syllabus."  

Lewis continues by saying you can never be good on your own, to refute the original question.   That, in fact, is not our purpose:
"We are to be re-made.  All the rabbit in us is to disappear - the worried, the conscientious, ethical rabbit as well as the cowardly and sensual rabbit.  We shall bleed and squeal as the handfuls of fur come out; and then, surprisingly, we shall find underneath it all a thing we have never yet imagined: a real Man, an ageless god, a son of God, strong, radiant, wise, beautiful, and drenched in joy."
This reminded me of Eustace when Aslan peeled off his dragon skin, which was also discussed in class.  How glorious it will be when we become who God has made us? 

"Morality is a mountain which we cannot climb by our own efforts; and if we could we should only perish in the ice and unbreathable air of the summit, lacking those wings with which the rest of the journey has to be accomplished.  For it from there that the real ascent begins.  The ropes and axes are 'done away' and the rest is a matter of flying."