Lord, please make it so that we would rather choose death than partake in evils against humanity. Make it so that we would rather risk our reputation and security than deny your call to work for freedom for the oppressed.
From Common Prayer
Monday, December 31, 2012
Sunday, December 30, 2012
The Warrior Of Light And Resistance
by Paulo Coelho
The warrior knows that the most important words in all languages are the small words.
Yes. Love. God.
They are words that are easy enough to say and which fill vast empty spaces.
There is, however, one word – another small word – that many people have great difficulty in saying: no.
Someone who never says no, thinks of himself as generous, understanding, polite, because ‘no’ is thought of as being nasty, selfish, unspiritual.
The warrior does not fall into this trap. There are times when, in saying ‘yes’ to others, he is actually saying ‘no’ to himself.
That is why he never says ‘yes’ with his lips if, in his heart, he is saying ‘no’.
Saturday, December 29, 2012
The light which shines in the eye is really the light of the heart. The light which fills the heart is the light of God.
The first snow of the year fell lightly and disappeared by noon. Fortunately, I caught a shot before the beauty disappeared and remained only in my mind.
I'm not as faithful or consistent about shooting. So much has fallen by the wayside this year.
"Ease." My word for the year. That fell by the wayside, too. I've experienced some ease. Much of this year, I've completely forgotten that Ease accompanied me.
I wonder what the next year will bring....
Thursday, December 27, 2012
I cannot say whether things will get better if we change; what I can say is that they must change if they are to get better.
...and that way is change.
Rules like "one way streets" keep us safe. It's best to keep those in place. But some rules like "we've always done it that way" keep us stuck.
Spread kindness...not violence.
Spread Love...not hate.
Those are changes worth making.
Tuesday, December 25, 2012
Khalil Gibran says that for 20 centuries men have adored the weakness of Jesus, and do not fully understand his power. Jesus did not live as a coward, and he died without complaining and suffering. He lived as a revolutionary, and was crucified as a rebel.He was not a bird with open wings, but a violent storm that parted wings. He was not a victim of his persecutors, and he didn’t suffer at their hands, but he was free before all of them.Jesus did not come to earth to destroy our homes, and, in turn, build monasteries with his stones; he came to breathe a new soul into us, to build a temple in every heart, a soul in every altar and a priest in every human being.Looking carefully at his life, we see that, although he knew that his passion was inevitable, he tried to give us a sense of joy in every one of his gestures. He must have thought long and hard before deciding upon which miracle was to be his first; he must have considered the healing of a paralysed man, the resurrection of the dead, the expulsion of a demon, “a noble gesture”. After all, it would be the first time he would show the world that he was the son of God.And it is written that his first miracle was turning water into wine to liven up a wedding party. The wisdom of this gesture should inspire us and always be present in our souls; the spiritual quest is compassion, enthusiasm and joy.Tibetan monk Chogyam Trunpga says, “We do not need to have a mystical experience to discover that the world is good. We should just realise that there are simple things around us, see the raindrops trickling down the window, waking in the morning and finding that the sun still shines, hear someone laughing.”
Christmas day and banana still stands. His leaves more frayed from the wind, yet he still has leaves. Only one day brought snow that melted by late morning. No hard freeze knocked him down...yet.
I'm torn between wanting the seasons to be as they always have with cold and snow in the next several weeks, and never wanting it to get cold again. The former means that life goes on and the cycles remain the same. The latter, while desirable to my yearning for the tropics, could mean we are in deep doo-doo.
Here's the truth...it is what it is. I am just along for the ride.
Monday, December 24, 2012
Friday, December 21, 2012
Here we are. At the beginning of the New Age. Has the shift happened? Only time will tell.
It is my prayer that we never again have to go through a horror like this. We must stop.
We must start to see each other as individuals. The innocents pay when we don't.
Can we relate to these children? They didn't yet have a political party. Most of them were not yet aware of their sexual orientation. The religion they practiced was likely that of their parents.
Yes, their race and gender were set. That's all.
Would they have become part of the 1% or the 99%?
Would they be givers or takers?
Would they be healthy or chronically ill and in need of assistance?
We'll never know.
Yet people in everyone of these categories exist in our realm. We must care for one another.
We simply must. We are all like fingers on a hand. Different but connected. Only when we work together will we get anything done.
Thursday, December 20, 2012
Wednesday, December 19, 2012
A single conversation with a wise person is worth a month’s study of books.
This morning I reposted a picture (with words) on Facebook. I thought it was amusing. At first I didn't plan to repost it. I had misgivings, but couldn't put my finger on them. A gut feeling stopped me, but then I overrode that.
A (much-more-conservative-than-I) friend called me out: "Just what we need...threats."
I'm glad she did. Here's why:
1. I want to add to the discussion, not raise tempers and eyebrows by using a tone or approach that alienates. I did not clearly see the post as threatening. In fact, I disagree that it was. The point is that some people do--people with whom I would rather further the discussion than squelch it.
2. I overrode my gut. This instance is not a big thing, yet it is a lesson to me that my gut knows more than my brain sometimes does. Even when I can't put my finger on what that something-is-off is.
3. While the tone of the post was amusing to me, it was ironic bordering on sarcasm. Sarcasm has its place, though the timing of using it can be delicate. Some situations are just too raw and sensitive to stand up to that tone. Not now. Maybe never.
4. Shame. Often when people "call me out" I feel shame. Not this time. I felt educated. My friend's tone was not as gentle as I would have liked. That's okay. She also didn't accuse or call me names. For that I am grateful. She clearly stated her thoughts and I listened. In previous instances of similar interactions, I might have felt shame. I didn't. A testament to my progress.
5. Her response reminded me that I am not operating in a vacuum. I have friends who are more liberal than I (yes, it is possible to be more liberal than I) and friends who are more conservative (okay...that's not so hard to do). On Facebook, I can easily forget the numbers and identity of people who are reading what I post. I do try to remain positive. I don't always succeed even to my own standards.
After I read her response I said, "Good point."
I thought a little longer and wrote, "I'll delete."
Tuesday, December 18, 2012
Monday, December 17, 2012
Only a peace between equals can last. Only a peace the very principle of which is equality and a common participation in a common benefit.
If you have an hour and a half to watch, check out this movie.
It is about a Mayan elder and his call to heal the world. The shift of ages is about us (the humans on the planet) getting it that we are all one: "We are like fingers on a hand...different, but all connected."
It is the only thing that will save us. We must rise above our reptile brains that see different as a threat. Time is running out.
...and the colors and scenery are beautiful!
Sunday, December 16, 2012
Friday, December 14, 2012
So great has been the endurance, so incredible the achievement, that, as long as the sun keeps a set course in heaven, it would be foolish to despair of the human race.
Ernest L. Woodward
Mr. Woodward is far more optimistic than I. I hope he is right. Too much gets in the way of our being kind to one another. Too much keeps us from taking care of one another.
In tragedy, we all pull together. What about before tragedy strikes?
We need more kindness. We need more capacity to see the other in ourself.
God, hear our prayers.
Thursday, December 13, 2012
Love makes your soul crawl out from its hiding place.
Zora Neale Hurston
COME OUT! Everyone. Show your true self...your true soul. Love makes us want to do that anyway. And that begets more Love.
So come out now...as who your soul truly manifests through you.
Wednesday, December 12, 2012
One cannot be exceptional and normal at the same time.
Here we are...almost at the middle of December. We haven't had a hard freeze yet. Banana is still standing in all his glory.
On this auspicious date, my wish is that we are all still standing in our exceptional glory as the future unfolds.
Normal is not all it is cracked up to be, after all.
Tuesday, December 11, 2012
Peace is not an absence of war; it is a virtue, a state of mind, a disposition for benevolence, confidence, justice.
Benedict De Spinoza
Terrible tragedy struck in Portland today. A man started shooting in a mall. Three died. One is badly wounded. One of those who died was the shooter...at his own hand.
I don't listen to the news. I can't. Stories like these break my heart. I weep when I hear the stories of those who were in harm's way. I weep to think of someone being so desperate, angry, or ill that he would carry out such a horrific act.
In this season of holy days, I wish...I hope...that we will all find peace; that we will all find healing; that we will all be safe.
Sunday, December 09, 2012
Saturday, December 08, 2012
Friday, December 07, 2012
To celebrate growing older, I once wrote the 45 lessons life taught me. It is the most requested column I've ever written.
My odometer rolled over to 90 in August, so here is the column once more:
1. Life isn't fair, but it's still good.
2. When in doubt, just take the next small step..
3. Life is too short - enjoy it..
4. Your job won't take care of you when you are sick. Your friends and
5. Pay off your credit cards every month.
6. You don't have to win every argument. Stay true to yourself.
7... Cry with someone. It's more healing than crying alone.
8. It's OK to get angry with God. He can take it.
9.. Save for retirement starting with your first paycheck.
10. When it comes to chocolate, resistance is futile.
11... Make peace with your past so it won't screw up the present.
12. It's OK to let your children see you cry.
13. Don't compare your life to others. You have no idea what their journey is all about.
14. If a relationship has to be a secret, you shouldn't be in it...
15. Everything can change in the blink of an eye But don't worry; God never blinks.
16... Take a deep breath. It calms the mind.
17. Get rid of anything that isn't useful. Clutter weighs you down in many ways.
18. Whatever doesn't kill you really does make you stronger.
19. It's never too late to be happy. But it's all up to you and no one else.
20. When it comes to going after what you love in life, don't take no for an answer.
21. Burn the candles, use the nice sheets, wear the fancy lingerie. Don't
save it for a special occasion. Today is special.
22. Over prepare, then go with the flow.
23 Be eccentric now. Don't wait for old age to wear purple.
24. The most important sex organ is the brain.
25. No one is in charge of your happiness but you.
26. Frame every so-called disaster with these words 'In five years, will
27. Always choose life.
28. Forgive but don't forget.
29. What other people think of you is none of your business.
30. Time heals almost everything. Give time time.
31. However good or bad a situation is, it will change.
32. Don't take yourself so seriously. No one else does..
33. Believe in miracles.
34. God loves you because of who God is, not because of anything you did or didn't do.
35. Don't audit life. Show up and make the most of it now.
36. Growing old beats the alternative -- dying young.
37. Your children get only one childhood.
38.. All that truly matters in the end is that you loved.
39. Get outside every day. Miracles are waiting everywhere.
40. If we all threw our problems in a pile and saw everyone else's, we'd
grab ours back.
41. Envy is a waste of time. Accept what you already have not what you need.
42. The best is yet to come...
43. No matter how you feel, get up, dress up and show up.
45. Life isn't tied with a bow, but it's still a gift.
Regina Brett, 90 years old
The Plain Dealer Newspaper, Cleveland, Ohio
Thursday, December 06, 2012
Wednesday, December 05, 2012
I would teach children music, physics, and philosophy; but most importantly music, for the patterns in music and all the arts are the keys to learning.
Tuesday, December 04, 2012
If every 8 year old in the world is taught meditation, we will eliminate violence from the world within one generation.
Let there be peace on earth and let it begin with me....
And the kid down the block...and every other 3rd grader.
So be it.
Monday, December 03, 2012
dalton in action (tan uniform)
One should never do wrong in return, nor mistreat any man, no matter how one has been mistreated by him.
I have been sitting here trying to come up with a thread that will connect the quote to the picture. How about sportsmanship?
It was either that or karma.
They both work the same way, don't they? It's just that with karma, there is no referee on the floor to call the foul and make you pay the penalty. That's called "instant karma."
Sportsmanship and karma are both about going beyond obeying the rules. They raise the bar to a level of behavior that goes above just following the rules of the game. They ask us to do what is right in relationship to others regardless of the circumstances around us.
Even when no ref is on the floor.
Sunday, December 02, 2012
Thursday, November 29, 2012
Wednesday, November 28, 2012
We don’t teach meditation to the young monks. They are not ready for it until they stop slamming doors.
Thich Nhat Hanhto Thomas Merton in 1966
I love this!
I've always thought of meditation as a way to get myself to stop slamming doors. Perhaps I have it backwards.
I'm much better than I used to be at holding onto myself. I do still have my moments, as those who know me can attest.
Note to self: Daily practice = stop slamming doors.
Tuesday, November 27, 2012
Monday, November 26, 2012
Each one according to [their] means should take care to be at one with everyone else, for the more one is united to [their] neighbor, the more [they are] united with God.
Dorotheus of Gaza
An abbot who lived in the sixth century spoke words that we still need to hear today. Whether you believe in God or not, what is true is that we are all connected. The sooner we realize this, the more chance we will have to save us all.
Granted, I am not always willing to help a panhandler, though I have been known to do so. This isn't about giving handouts to everyone. This is about recognizing that we share the human condition.
If you suffer, I suffer. If you celebrate, I celebrate.
We are in this together.
It's as simple as that.
Sunday, November 25, 2012
i love it when grandma comes. i get to sleep in the guest bed.
I never thought there was the possibility of getting that close to a dog before. There were nights when it was so cold out that I would have him crawl into my sleeping bag with me just so I could stay warm.
Marine Cpl. Joseph Singeron his bonding with a bomb-sniffing dog while in Afghanistan
Sometimes...okay, often I am at a loss for words. I have a warm bed. I am safe. I love my cats and they love me.
I will never know what it must be like for Corporal Singer and his dog. I thank them both for their service.
May they be safe.
May they be warm.
May they know they are loved.
Saturday, November 24, 2012
Friday, November 23, 2012
Thursday, November 22, 2012
Put your ear down close to your soul and listen hard.
She walked out of the house one frozen morning to go to work. This is the message she received.
May we all remember this every morning.
Wednesday, November 21, 2012
Climb the mountains and get their good tidings. Nature's peace will flow into you as sunshine flows into trees. The winds will blow their own freshness into you while cares will drop off like autumn leaves.
Light exists in all things, if only we have eyes to see it.
Tuesday, November 20, 2012
Saturday, November 17, 2012
In war, there are no unwounded soldiers.
I have no idea how I did this. No war...not even a battle. No injury that registered on my screen or made me say ouch.
Many warriors have wounds that don't even show up this much. If only we could get it that even though their wounds may not show up on the outside, their souls are bruised and battered.
May we find peace. And may we take care of the soldiers whose wounds show and those whose wounds don't show.
Friday, November 16, 2012
We are always the same age inside.
At the beginning of the month, Mom and I went to Wyoming to visit my sister and her family. While there, we went to a middle school basketball game. See #5? He's in the foreground. That's my great-nephew. He made the first basket of the game!
Thursday, November 15, 2012
I used to allow other people to mistreat me. I wanted to be loved so badly I thought the attention they paid me, even negative, was love. One day I realized abuse, disrespect, neglect, rudeness, control, etc., is never love. The day I started respecting myself was the day I stopped the self-abuse of allowing other people to abuse me.
Regina Victoria Cates
Self-love is sometimes the hardest lesson. It's okay if it takes a while to put your finger on it and see that you are being mistreated. The point is seeing it and taking action.
The more practiced we become, the quicker we see it and take appropriate action. Abuse is never love.
Wednesday, November 14, 2012
Monday, November 12, 2012
One of the benefits of being a mature, well-educated woman is that you are not afraid of expletives. And you have no fear to put a fool in his place. That's the power of language and experience. You learn a lot from Shakespeare.
I will try to refrain from the expletives in this post on general principles. Just be aware, I am a mature, educated woman and I am not afraid of expletives...nor am I afraid to use them.
This will be brief:
I fucking hate the new blogger interface. (Oops...that was short-lived.) It's unfriendly and won't do some of the things it used to. Those things-it-won't do are things that made my postings quick and easy. Now? Not so much.
My daily posts come in batches now. So check back when you can. I'll try to catch up and keep up.
Sunday, November 11, 2012
The only answer in this life, to the loneliness we are all bound to feel, is community. The living together, working together, sharing together, loving God and loving our [neighbor], and living close to [God] in community so we can show our love for [God].
What do you do when you feel lonely?
I used to pick up the phone and call one of a dozen people to chat or get together to do something. Seems like spontaneity is a thing of the past when it comes to social interactions.
Give me some hints....
Saturday, November 10, 2012
Thursday, November 08, 2012
Wednesday, November 07, 2012
All differences in this world are of degree, and not of kind, because oneness is the secret of everything.
I don't know about you, but I am glad this election season is over...well, almost over--all but the instant replays.
Learning to work and play together was one of the lessons of elementary school, wasn't it?
Perhaps it is time to return to basics.
Tuesday, November 06, 2012
A lie can travel halfway around the world while the truth is still putting on its shoes.
Today is election day. Vote or not. It is your choice. However, if you do vote, please be informed. Check your sources. Don't just assume that if the stories you hear support your prejudices they are accurate.
Monday, November 05, 2012
Sing in the shower. Dance to the radio. Tell stories. Write a poem to a friend, even a lousy poem. Do it as well as you possibly can. You will get an enormous reward. You will have created something.
The important thing is...DO SOMETHING.
You will feel good for having done something...even sweeping the floor.
Sunday, November 04, 2012
Saturday, November 03, 2012
Humor has bailed me out of more tight situations than I can think of. If you go with your instincts and keep your humor, creativity follows. With luck, success comes, too.
And I'm gonna go see my sister. Laughter will prevail.
Friday, November 02, 2012
Thursday, November 01, 2012
Tuesday, October 30, 2012
Never, never be afraid to do what's right, especially if the well-being of a person or animal is at stake. Society's punishments are small compared to the wounds we inflict on our soul when we look the other way.
Martin Luther King, Jr.
...from the front porch. He doesn't really like the rain.
Monday, October 29, 2012
Sunday, October 28, 2012
Saturday, October 27, 2012
Friday, October 26, 2012
Certain thoughts are prayers. There are moments when, whatever be the attitude of the body, the soul is on its knees.
Victor HugoLes Misérables
Getting there is a process. I am in a continual state of working on myself. Those of you who are close to me (sorry SO, Mom, and Thithter...) know that I sometimes spew my less than loving thoughts. But I do try NOT to do that in public.
And I continue to work on my awareness and get brought up short on a regular basis. In the meantime, I thank you for your patience.
Thursday, October 25, 2012
The opposite of love is not hate, it's indifference. The opposite of art is not ugliness, it's indifference. The opposite of faith is not heresy, it's indifference. And the opposite of life is not death, it's indifference.
May your days (as well as your nights) be full of passion. Life is much fuller that way.
Wednesday, October 24, 2012
The only thing I fear more than change is no change. The business of being static makes me nuts... Art is the only way to run away without leaving home.
Change is all there is! Nothing doesn't change. (Wrap your head around that sentence.) Even in death--change continues.
What would happen if no change even could occur?
I don't think I want to know.
Tuesday, October 23, 2012
Monday, October 22, 2012
Warriors confront the evil that most people refuse to acknowledge.
And for the record, confrontation doesn't always mean fighting. Just acknowledging and naming is sometimes all it takes.
True warriors pick their battles carefully. They fight only when necessary.
Sunday, October 21, 2012
Saturday, October 20, 2012
I think laughter may be a form of courage. As humans we sometimes stand tall and look into the sun and laugh, and I think we are never more brave than when we do that.
Laughter does so many things that are good for us. Laugh on! And bring someone with you!
Friday, October 19, 2012
Here I stand. I can do no other.
I've often said to people. "I know you don't like where you are, but until you accept it, you can't go somewhere else. You are at the mall looking at the directory and the X tells you you are in front of Sears. You want to go to Macy's. You say, 'I am not in front of Sears. I am in front of Penney's!' The route to get to Macy's is completely different. You won't make it there unless you accept that you are in front of Sears.
Thursday, October 18, 2012
If we are to love our neighbors, before doing anything else we must see our neighbors. With our imagination as well as our eyes, that is to say like artists, we must see not just their faces but the life behind and within their faces. Here it is love that is the frame we see them in.
Frederick BuechnerWhistling in the Dark
I know what it is like to be invisible. Frequently, people just don't see me. Prejudices get in the way and we become blind.
Because I know what it feels like to be invisible, I try to see people. I try to smile at someone every day--even when I'm having a cranky day.
And it is hard to truly smile at someone without seeing them--with the eyes and the heart. People get it. They know they are being seen.
When I started this practice, I was amazed (and I am a bit embarrassed to say this) at how many smile back.
Wednesday, October 17, 2012
Indecision may or may not be my problem.
Did you know that Jimmy is a wonderfully, fun author? I stumbled upon A Salty Piece of Land while on vacation one year. Now I re-read it periodically because it is so much fun. (If you listen to his music, you'll see it in his books.)
Tuesday, October 16, 2012
Monday, October 15, 2012
Sunday, October 14, 2012
Saturday, October 13, 2012
Sometimes your only available transportation is a leap of faith.
Seems lately I've been walking by faith more often than by sight. I say to the Beloved, "I wonder how you are going to work this out." Frequently, I say that.
I know the Beloved has my back. I know things will work out.
I don't know how things will work out. I don't know what the outcome will be.
I do know that the process and outcome may look completely different from what I expect. And I may not like all of it.
However, I do know the Beloved and I trust. Some days, it's all I can do.
Friday, October 12, 2012
Thursday, October 11, 2012
Did you hear about the 8 pound 9 ounce baby who was born on 10/11/12 at 13:14 (military time)?
I love new babies.
I love new babies.
Wednesday, October 10, 2012
Tuesday, October 09, 2012
Abbot Pastor said: Get away from any man who always argues every time he talks.
The Wisdom of the Desert
Being able to argue well is a good skill to have. It means we have the capacity to hold an idea and parse our feelings and thoughts about it. It means that we know why we stand where we do on an issue.
Being argumentative as a way of life or as a trait of character is not at all the same.
Monday, October 08, 2012
A "No" uttered from the deepest conviction is better than a "Yes" merely uttered to please, or worse, to avoid trouble.
Wouldn't it be wonderful if our yesses and nos were honored?
Wouldn't it be wonderful if when someone said "yes" you could really believe that they meant it from the bottom of their heart?
Same with "no."
The ability to agree ("yes") or disagree ("no") defines us. That same ability grants us power--personal power...the ability to control our own lives.
Wouldn't that be wonderful?
Sunday, October 07, 2012
But I also had my mother. And she said she never saw the conflict between religion and evolution. Louis Leakey—my great mentor who dug up early man—he felt the same. So I had this, and then, yes, it all came together in the forest. But you have to remember, I didn’t start as a scientist. I wanted to be poet laureate, and I wanted to be a naturalist. That’s how I began. I didn’t have any desire to go and be a scientist. Louis Leakey channeled me there. I’m delighted he did. I love science. I love analyzing and making sense of all these observations. So it was the perfect rounding off of who I was into who I am.
I'm not a scientist, but I had a mother (and other people) who believed I could be whoever I wanted to be. I remember a number of teachers who encouraged me and thought I could do anything.
Believe in someone who is in the process of becoming. It makes a difference. You can change their life.
Saturday, October 06, 2012
Friday, October 05, 2012
Thursday, October 04, 2012
What you see here is the result of banana blowing in the wind. And Blowing in the Wind (the song) wonders aloud, "When are we going to get it?"When man avoids violence and war, although the way of war is open to him, he chooses the noblest line of conduct – restraint.
Zuli ~ ॐ
Truth is...if we don't get it soon we are all going to look a lot like banana after a wind storm--ragged. Beautiful still--but much broken down by the wear.
Wednesday, October 03, 2012
My hunger for the freedom of my own people became a hunger for the freedom of all people, white and black. I knew as well as I knew anything that the oppressor must be liberated just as surely as the oppressed. A [person] who takes away another [person's] freedom is a prisoner of hatred ... is locked behind bars of prejudice and narrow-mindedness. I am not truly free if I am taking away someone else's freedom, just as surely as I am not free when my freedom is taken from me. The oppressed and the oppressor alike are robbed of their humanity.
Tuesday, October 02, 2012
There are three kinds of patriots, two bad, one good. The bad ones are the uncritical lovers and the loveless critics. Good patriots carry on a lover's quarrel with their country, a reflection of God's lover's quarrel with all the world.
The Rev. William Sloane Coffin
I love my country. So do many people I know (or know of) with whom I disagree. All of us who love our country are patriotic. And there is more than one way to do it.
However, just like I want my beloved humans to be the best they can be, so I want that for my country. Being mindless and going along with those who do not have the good of everyone at heart (and in their plans) falls in the first category. Hating all politicians and wanting to throw all the bums out falls in the second.
Politics is a career. It is not something that Joe, The Plumber (or I) can step in and do. Certainly, not do well, anyway.
When I was younger, I probably fell more in the second category. Now, I have a lover's quarrel going on. And I am trying not to let those who woo the first category mess us all up.
Monday, October 01, 2012
I will never say anything that couldn't stand as the last thing I ever say.
Sunday, September 30, 2012
I don't mind if I have to sit on the floor at school. All I want is education. And I'm afraid of no one.Malala Yousufzai
14 year old Pakistani girl, shot for her activism for education for girls
I don't know what I would have done if I couldn't go to school.
Saturday, September 29, 2012
Thursday, September 27, 2012
Bernard McGinn says that mysticism is “a consciousness of the presence of God that by definition exceeds description and . . . deeply transforms the subject who has experienced it.” If it does not deeply change the lifestyle of the person—their worldview, their economics, their politics, their ability to form community—you have no reason to believe it is genuine mystical experience. It is often just people with an addiction to religion itself, which is not that uncommon.Mysticism is not just a change in some religious ideas or affirmations, but it is an encounter of such immensity that everything else shifts in position. Mystics have no need to exclude or eliminate others precisely because they have experienced radical inclusivity of themselves into something much bigger. They do not need to define themselves as enlightened or superior, whereas a mere transfer of religious assertions often makes people even more elitist and more exclusionary.True mystics are glad to be common, ordinary, servants of all, and “just like everybody else,” because any need for specialness has been met once and for all.
Wednesday, September 26, 2012
Tuesday, September 25, 2012
When you refrain from habitual thoughts and behavior, the uncomfortable feelings will still be there. They don’t magically disappear. Over the years, I’ve come to call resting with the discomfort “the detox period,” because when you don’t act on your habitual patterns, it’s like giving up an addiction. You’re left with the feelings you were trying to escape. The practice is to make a wholehearted relationship with that.
Not all habitual behaviors are to be avoided...like blogging. Sorry. I'm trying to get back into the swing of things.
Sunday, September 23, 2012
Thursday, September 20, 2012
The rule for us all is perfectly simple. Do not waste time bothering whether you 'love' your neighbor; act as if you did. As soon as we do this we find one of the great secrets. When you are behaving as if you loved someone, you will presently come to love him [or her].
It's true, you know. I wrote about my airport experience several days ago--the part where I go in with a Love Bomb and people are nicer. I've been doing that more and more. I don't know about anyone else, but I feel better.
Good enough. And if it changes them as well as me...so much the better.
Wednesday, September 19, 2012
If you're going to care about the fall of the sparrow you can't pick and choose who's going to be the sparrow. It's everybody.
Every night when I go to bed, I take a handful of food for Mijo and put it on the table at the head of my bed. He comes in to say good night and have a snack before retiring. Sometimes he cuddles a while. Other times he can't get out of there fast enough.
In the morning, he waits for me in the hall outside my room...sprawled to cover as much area as possible. At his size, that's a lot of area.
Tuesday, September 18, 2012
It's almost gone now. Only the part on the underside of my arm remains, fading fast. Surely, this can't mean that vacation is over and I have been back at work for over a week.Wrinkles will only go where the smiles have been.
Turtle ink--fun while it lasted. Made room for some wrinkles, we did.
Sunday, September 16, 2012
We have lived our lives by the assumption that what was good for us would be good for the world. We have been wrong. We must change our lives so that it will be possible to live by the contrary assumption, that what is good for the world will be good for us. And that requires that we make the effort to know the world and learn what is good for it.
We sat on the patio of Lava Java. Most days we drank fresh juice and coffee. Many days we ate meals there because it was fresh, local, organic.
It was good for us.
Saturday, September 15, 2012
In Captain Cook, Hawaii, the restaurant at the Manago Hotel is famous for pork chops. Cast iron pans have been used for 100 years to prepare them. Only pork chops are cooked in those pans.One of the things Jesus did was to step aside from the organized religion of his time because it had become corrupt and bogged down with rules. Rules became more important than feeding the hungry.
Friday, September 14, 2012
For grace to be grace, it must give us things we didn't know we needed and take us places where we didn't know we didn't want to go. As we stumble through the crazily altered landscape of our lives, we find that God is enjoying our attention as never before.
Thursday, September 13, 2012
Wednesday, September 12, 2012
Sunday, September 09, 2012
|(click on the picture to see the whole sign)|
Michelle O'Neill at Full Soul Ahead sent me a copy of The Daughter of the Drunk at the Bar so that Janie could go on vacation.Undressing Learn the alchemy true human beings know. The moment you accept what troubles you’ve been given, the door will open. Welcome difficulty, as a familiar comrade. Joke with torment brought by the Friend. Sorrows are the rags of old clothes and jackets that serve to cover and then are taken off. That undressing, and the naked body underneath, is the sweetness that comes after grief.
She liked it so much, she stayed. Now she lives at the Kailua-Kona Public Library.
(If you haven't read it yet...do. It's powerful!)
Saturday, September 08, 2012
I'm such a softie and these guys got my number. They are feral cats who do quite well getting the tourists to feed them.Along with love, compassion is the face of altruism. It is a feeling from deep in the heart that you cannot bear others’ suffering without acting to relieve it. As compassion grows stronger, so does your willingness to commit yourself to the welfare of all beings, even if you have to do it alone. You will be unbiased in your service to all beings, no matter how they respond to you.
One of the orange guys didn't look well. He had weepy eyes. He looked old. As we were leaving on the last day, he came out of the garbage can. I don't know if he was rummaging or had spent the night there. I managed to coax him back to our unit where I put out a can of food. He was the only one there at the time so I hope he got his fill before the others arrived.
I don't know whether they made me miss my kitties more or less....
Thursday, September 06, 2012
Let me tell you how to love all equally…Do not demand anything from those you love. If you make demands, some will give you more and some less. In any case you will love more those who give you more and less those who give you less. Thus your love will not be the same for all. You will not be able to love all impartially.
Wednesday, September 05, 2012
Monday, September 03, 2012
Sunday, September 02, 2012
Laughter is an instant vacation.
Magic Sands Beach. With a name like that, one hopes for good things.
The shorebreak looked like fun. Not so much.
And that is where the Serengeti met the ocean. The sunglasses, not the desert.
I made an offering. I hope Mother Ocean is styling with her new shades.