What I Believe Makes Me Who I Am

Who am I? What do I believe? And, can I name a few of my beliefs?

Let me name a few things I believe about myself. They’re in no particular order. Continue reading

Calling all ‘Spiritual Soldiers of Fortune’

I believe that I have become a “spiritual soldier of fortune” and would travel anywhere my heart beckons me to learn, to pray and to find answers about the universe.

I got an inkling of this calling when I was a teenager. It came about when I was 18, just out of high school and experimenting with grass and LSD. Timothy Leary enticed me with his message in the 1960s, advising all to “turn on, tune in and drop out.” I turned on and tuned into the message, but couldn’t afford to drop out because I was from a working class family that saw work as a way out of poverty and into the middle class. Continue reading

Contentment: Learning to be Content OK

Good enough is the lazy man’s way to enlightenment . . . There’s nothing more to do . . .  Your job is good enough . . . Your spouse is good enough . . .Your life  is good enough . . . Your meditation practice is good enough. . . You don’t need anything more, and what you now have is good enough. — This is all according to a young monk, – Ajahn Khemavaro, who spoke on Impermanence, in a 2008 presentation, “Everything Will Be alright.Continue reading

Ups & downs of life provide me lessons

When you’re down and feel like nothing, God is usually up to something just for you.

That’s a saying on a church sign outside of Philadelphia hat I edited and slightly changed and can safely say is now mine. Continue reading

‘Do’s’ and ‘Don’t’s’ of Radiating Wisdom

 Today’s meditation showed us that we all have a profound and innate wisdom. How have you experienced this in your life? Write about a time that you spontaneously said the right thing at the right time to someone. What did that communication feel like for you? — Deepak & Oprah 21-day Meditation Experience.

As I struggle to come up with a satisfactory answer for this question, let me focus instead on what Deepak had quoted William Blake as saying in reference to wisdom. Wisdom is “organized innocence.” What a concept! In order to have or to cultivate wisdom, I know that I must be in awe of something; I must see that thing with wonder, with the eyes of an innocent child. Continue reading

Love notes discovered from a distant past

Him: God, I miss being in love. I guess I could say I miss you.
You helped me to tap into the feelings I usually only got with Shekinah, what the Kabbalah says is the feminine side of the divine. She’ll always be with me, and I see now you simply took her place for a little while here on Earth. Love is still there but only redirected now.
Thanks. Continue reading

Spiritual love flows on, says the Maiden

(Continued from What’s next for love’s mysterious ways?)

The Maiden of Athena to the Foolish Knight:

Is this not, yet another spiritual practice for you?

 For me too.

 I think it is very possible, even natural, to go from one form of love to another. And back again, and forward again.
 You are resisting the flow of things, that is for sure. I think, my very good friend, you must go to your countrymen for answers. The Greeks. The Greeks!
 I never considered the different faces of love before hearing of Eros, Philia, Agape, and Storge. I never made the connection between “platonic love” and Plato. My goodness, I didn’t know any of these distinctions, and they are so nice.
 Why?
 Because they are freeing. 
Love can have many forms. There is no right form. These are the distinctions the Greeks made. For me, just the fact that love is formless is enough to set me free from its potential traps. We don’t have to cling to definitions the Greek put forth, although they are quite nice!
 
Why does love die?
Because we have an image of it. We trap it. We trap it in the form in which we think it belongs. We do not let it transform itself. We annihilate it. 
When it rains and the it stops raining, do we become sad and doubtful that we will never see rain in its purest form again? Where is it? It has filled the lakes and oceans of the Earth. The process of condensation begins, and the water becomes vapor and it becomes one with the atmosphere again. We don’t necessarily perceive this process. And then it rains again. Water has so many forms. Because it has changed form, has it died? Isn’t that THE question. The BIG question. The form has changed, the thing has transmuted, it has taken a different shape, and it will become something else, but it has not died. When a single raindrop hits the surface of the ocean, has it died? Such is the rain, such is the soul.
 
Didn’t someone say that upon observing the lotus flower, you can become wise? So it is with all the natural processes. 
Love, too. 
We don’t have to discipline ourselves because there is discipline in the world. 
Love is so concentrated when it’s passionate. It has an earthly form, the form of the person who we direct it towards. Is this sustainable? No. Is anything? No. Forms change. 
Don’t resist the flow. Your love will be a spiritual love yet again.
See below for the question the wise maiden answers here:

What’s next for love’s mysterious ways?

Divine Mother, spare the Fem-in-’em now

Take ’em. Break ’em. Make ’em.

O Grand Master, it is your females that will save this species. It is through their power, their innate abilities that man will be saved. Compassion and love must rule the day again. And power must be crushed by the mallet of humility before any dare send another child into war that old men dream of winning as if playing games of adolescent ruffians. Continue reading

Truly Living May Just Be Worth Dying For

The thought of going to prison never bothered me. I’d survive and flourish behind bars where I’d have more than enough time to reflect and write which I have found is my true love in life.

No, I could kill without worrying about the consequences. It would be my first offense. I am certified as a Vietnam veteran with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder and I don’t see any judge or jury putting me to death for the crime.

All of this went through my mind when I was waiting at the train platform and a rather tall, white guy walked in front of me. I was standing near the tracks. I was close enough and in line with others stranding on either side of me that I never thought someone could make their way between me and the tracks. But the man did. He walked around me. He stood directly in front of me. No one else stood that close. I recall thinking how totally inappropriate and rude his actions were.

That’s when I planned to kill him. Continue reading

Yearning for you grows with each touch

What is a monk to do when he is lonely? When he is blue?

When you reach that low point where you feel you are the loneliest person in the world, who or what do you turn to for relieve? Continue reading

Doors are Opening for All Doing Good!

There’s a passage in Mark’s Gospel in which Jesus’ disciples complain that someone — one who is not one of them — is casting out demons in Jesus’ name. It seems that fundamentalists of all ages have held a belief that there was only one way to get to the kingdom; only one way, and that was through Jesus. Continue reading

I wish all compassion found in meditation

On February 5th, 2012, a friend who calls herself, the Frugal Xpatcommented: “I always wanted to meditate . . .

I didn’t respond to the comment until now, but want to share how everyone could enjoy this exercise  the frugal expat spoke of  in Daily Meditation Desperately Needed. As she describes her life’s quest, she is on “An expat’s journey in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates.” Continue reading

Being present for the dying brings all alive

Death entered into my life recently and I have never felt more alive than with — and in — its presence. Continue reading

How many times must we say “I’m sorry”?

Saying you’re sorry can be downright scary. Particularly, if you’re not sure if the other party will accept your mea culpa even though it’s from the bottom of your heart. Continue reading

IN HOT WATER AT THE GYM

I never knew the hot water I’d get in at a local gym until I waded into a hot tub and saw one of the gym staffers assault a fellow bather when he paid more attention to the person he was speaking to via headphones than the operations manager, who yanked at his headset, telling him to get the hell out. Continue reading

A change in time helps change my reality

Reality shifted on me the other day, and it helped me realize that I have more control than my “preshifted” thoughts allowed me to see. Now, with a “time-control outlook,” I can try to change my world for the better. Continue reading

Rush Limbaugh should study reproduction

We should accept Rush Limbaugh’s apology for calling a woman a slut only if he agrees to take, and pass, a course on female reproduction. Then, and only then, can we be assured that someone other than locker-room juveniles has finally taught him the real facts about the birds and the bees. Continue reading

Let Catholics ‘opt out” in birth control plan

I don’t understand all the fuss that Catholic universities and hospitals are raising over providing health care for woman that includes mandatory birth control provisions. Why not let “practicing Catholics” following the teachings of their church to “opt out” for the coverage, while permitting non-Catholics what doctors and women’s groups say is a health benefit? Continue reading

We the People, not We the Corporations

“Corporations are people, my friend”

Well, if you trace the history of something called corporate “personhood,” you can blame this inglorious recognition on an unelected clerk writing a summary of a court decision that never actually decided this issue. Continue reading

Too afraid to say a woman scared you

“Why did you shoot her?”

“I don’t know.”

With these three words, the defendant buried himself, and no matter what I did to rehabilitate a self-defense claim before the jury, we were sunk. It showed that no matter what one plans, sometimes something can, and always will, go wrong. Continue reading

Like to change history? Try writing it

How’d you like to go back in time and correct mistakes made in the past? No, you couldn’t go back to the moment before you were conceived, or any other time in your far distant past. Go back to more recent moments – say in the past year or two — when you believed you knew so much about life and how to live it without doing harm to others. Continue reading

Newt, a big-headed, brain-bloated bully

Newton Le Roy Gingrich is a big-headed, brain-bloated bully who is best understood if you picture what kind of kid he might have been and remember why you disliked him and his sophomoric antics while growing up. Continue reading

When a criminal defendant wants to lie . . .

Someone asked me how a criminal lawyer could ever represent a person who‘s guilty.

I told ‘em that was it was easy. My job as an attorney was never to judge, but to uphold something called the Constitution.

It’s the one time, however, that a guy planned to lie to a jury that really got to me.

————————-

Continue reading

My life is dependent on the rest of you

I am as dependent on you as you are on me, as we all are on the kindness and labor of others we too often take for granted.

As I look around, I see that my fortune is dependent on the cooperation and contributions of others. Continue reading

These are true signs of our times

When I read the Occupy Wall Street demonstrators were unfocused and without a coherent message, I took a closer look at them in Philadelphia, and disvovered some were disheveled street persons looking for handouts, and one a graduate school political science major spouting Marxist teachings.

They represented only one percent.

The 99 percent of the other protestors were mostly young, highly educated unemployed or underemployed men and women who got tired of the debt-ceiling fiasco and took to the streets to mobilize against the Tea Party followers. Continue reading

End needless suffering in US debates

Tone it down America. You are cutting off your nose to despite your face. The face of the body politic, that is, and we are creating needless hurt for the countrymen we’d like to lead to our mutual goal: the pursuit of happiness. Continue reading

WHY I AM A DEMOCRAT

Why am I a Democrat?

I was born this way. No, that’s not right. I was raised this way. No, that’s not quite right either. I chose to be a Democrat. Continue reading