Thursday, December 22, 2011

Reaction to Kung Fu Panda 2

Inner peace is really what we are all looking for.  Everything else is, in the words of the soothsayer, "a cup that can never be filled."

Inner peace and power come from knowing who we are, a theme also present in the Lion King.  We come to know who we are as we 1) accept our past, 2) feel we are loved, and 3) choose who we will be.  Actually, I wish it were this simple.  But, in fact, I believe we come to know who we are by revelation.  It is a spiritual journey.  It cannot be forced, any more than you can force a seed to sprout and flower.  (But you can plant the seed, and nurture and protect it.)  It was such for Po in this movie.

And this is a weird one.  As I looked at the menacing wolves at the beginning of the film, bustling about in the foundry making cannons, I thought, What could sustain someone in such a dark and evil life?  What sustains any of us?  If we are more than just physical beings, then we need more than just physical nourishment.  Some pine away in a life of addiction, feasting on pleasures and escapes that increasingly do not last.  Some draw continual strength from prayer, fasting, the Word of God, and losing themselves in service to others.  Most of us lie somewhere in between these extremes, struggling each day to make our choice.  But I believe our power to choose is greatly affected by what we feed on, whether it be dreams and plans of comfort and security; schemes of lust and power; or entering into covenants with God, and walking in His ways.

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

How To Make a Trapezoid in Inkscape

Inkscape is a "free treasure," if there is such a thing.  My thanks to all who have spent countless hours bringing this powerful vector graphics editor to all of us freely.

I struggled to learn how to make a simple symmetrical trapezoid in Inkscape.  I found the answer here but it took some searching.

  1. Draw a rectangle.

  2. Convert it to a path (Path > Object to Path)

  3. Use the node select tool (F2) to select the two corners of the rectangle that you want to adjust to form a trapezoid (You have to hold down the shift key to select multiple nodes).

  4. Press the comma or period keys to move apart or bring together the nodes.

Step 4 doesn't seem to be well documented, but it sure is a handy trick!

"Draw Freely!"