Monday, April 28, 2014

And Now, Bragging about my Kin...

Will Clark Green (my cousin) won the Lone Star Music awards!  Here's a clip of the song that won him the award.  Give a listen, I think you'll love it.  Unlike many songs on the radio these days, this one includes humor, gives a sense of time and paints a long scope of a relationship.  

Enjoy  "She likes the Beatles" and if you like it, go check out his whole CD, Rose Queen.  The rest of the music contains similar narrative stories of pain, love, loss, regret and family.    I'm not normally a CW fan as far as music goes, but I love the poetry of his work, and would even if he weren't my cousin.  



My second brag involves my son Peter.  He struggles with many things, not the least of which is being that hard age of 14 in a large family, athletic where most of us are bookish, and surrounded by as he puts it, "too many girls." This weekend, he ran in a 5k --piece of cake for him really, with his older sister.  The run had approximately 200+ people in it, to raise money for Good Counsel, the high school his sister attends.  

He came in second.  He didn't want to let me take his picture or I'd have it plastered over the internet by now.  The cool thing was the young men who came in after him, all six inches taller, four of them walked over to Peter.  They asked how old he was, and said if he came to Good Counsel, he'd better be on the cross country because he just beat half the team, and by quite a margin. 

It was a moment of what just happened here?  Wow! for me.  

Friday, April 25, 2014

7 Quick Takes

 
1.  So I didn't post Small Success Thursday on Thursday as I didn't want it to crowd an already written post.  So here's your link to participate in yesterday's celebration of everyday victories over minutia, schedules, clutter, exercise, resisting the urge to hunt down your children's hidden stashes of Easter Chocolate, etc.     Stop over at Catholicmom.com and visit by clicking here.

2. This week is Prom week for our second oldest.  She and I went shopping and found her whole outfit.  She's going with friends tonight, but I'm posting the "selfie" she did for Facebook so you can see, she looks lovely and happy, all you could ask for.  
 
 
3.  What am I reading?  Well, this week I finished rereading Watership Down, and polished off A Kitchen House.  The former was a dream, the later, not so much.  Now I'm working on a book my husband gave me, "How the Irish Saved Civilization."  Can't pour out what I don't put in.  Which leads to the next part of this post. 

4.  What's in a review?   I belong to the community of Catholicmom.com and as such sometimes get books to read and review.  In January, I received Daughters in Danger by Elayne Bennett. I wanted this particular one, given I have 6 daughters and one is going off to college. 


I read it in February and prepared to post it when we got to March.   It is now April.   I am posting the review here and at Amazon, I wanted to give 4 or 5 stars because I know the blood, sweat, time and energy that goes into writing a book, I know no one ever feels good when they get something other than 4 or 5 stars, I wanted to really dig into the topic.

The Good: 
Bennett's assessment of the multiple threats facing children growing up in the cyber age is spot on. Her work and writing indicates a sincere desire to help arm today's youth with the tools to maintain their innate dignity and security, and she has twenty years of serving at risk populations to back up her solutions. Her message is good, we must do better by our daughters as a matter of justice, if not love.
 

 I know the culture we must raise them in has serious threats that must be vigilantly met, and the author has the history and background chops to really dig into this topic. She gives good qualitative examples of the problem torn from the headlines of recent years, I remembered most of these cases and understand the problem of how to teach our girls to be alert, to be aware, and to be savvy not just about the world but themselves.
The Mixed and the Frustrating:
However, her solutions would be better received if they were bolstered by quantitative research, which it would seem she could add given her 20 years of running a nationwide program that reaches out and seeks to help at risk children. I kept waiting for the stats, they came but late in the book. The stats bolster what she asserts and if she were to illustrate from the 2 decades of providing community based support the before and after or the outcomes 5, 10 years out, of those who participated and those who didn't, statistically speaking, she could win people easily. I also think, the politics of the issues, while facts, unintentionally distract and detract from her presentation. Stick to what you do and why, reveal why it works, make the case for why it should continue.

I still agree with her premise and the promise of this book. I believe to help all teens thrive, we need to engage them on a personal level, to teach them that they must have respect for their minds, hearts and bodies if they want to break out of the shackles of low expectations that can often plague girls in particular and foster a cycle of poverty hard to break.

If they gave half stars, I would feel more comfortable, 3.5. 

Final Opinion: 

My impression was that the final chapter should have been the outline for the structure of the book, to give it a sharper focus, because the book gives good stories, outlines the problems young women face today, and provides suggestions for solutions, but those strong points are marred by the method of presentation which feels bloggy in style, jumping topics. I wanted more meat to the bones of the argument being put forth, and I felt it could have been given, so it frustrated me as a former educator of at risk students, I wanted to delve into it deeper. This should be a better book given the hard work being done and being proposed, the daughters in danger deserve our attention.

5.  I follow an  Archeology site as part of ongoing research for Penelope. They found a statue of Demeter in Turkey owing to two people doing an illegal excavation.  You can read the story here.

demeter
I thought it cool, you have to wonder, how many other treasures are lurking under our feet around the world? 

6.  This weekend, in addition to Prom, we have two teens running in a 5K, two birthday parties --one of which we're hosting, and the normal every week stuff that tends to crowd up the weekend.  Next week is 1st Communion, and then we get into the super crazy part of May, with Confirmation, exams, graduations, a birthday, Mother's day and still the ordinary stuff that makes up life.   Writing may become more scarce as a result. 

7.  I missed the sign up sheet for swimming lessons, which always fill up early around here, with sign ups being some time in March, but I always forget to think Swimming and Summer until some time in April.   So I'm now searching for a place to sign up the 7, 8, 10 and 12 year old for lessons, the 14 year old to learn lifeguard skills, and the 3 and 5 year old to start water safety.   Some day I'll remember that every season is best planned two months before, but I'm almost always playing catch up.  

Thursday, April 24, 2014

Hold onto the Nails, not the hurt.


Facebook brings us many people talking about and linking to many things, not all of them just, kind or beautiful. One had an angry screed at the top because the person felt outrage at the callus laughter of those who beat a man as the description of his beating and injuries were discussed in court. He called them not human.
 
Another posted smugly about her politics, and how uneducated the other side stubbornly remains for daring to think otherwise.
 
I received an email demanding I stand up against my own Church because it does not sanction what the world has decided must be.
 
In every case, and I saw people rallying to the other side, people assembling on the internet in camps of left and right, Republican and Democrat, White and Black, Christian and non Christian, those in favor and those who oppose the redefinition of marriage as recognized by the state, and in every place, I saw people declare the other side, Not Human. Or less worthy human. Or even worthless. All matter of civility and principles, manners and charity were exchanged for vitriol, I'm right, you're a dunderhead. But in less gentle terms. Everyone everywhere felt entitled, justified to hold onto the hurt. 
 
And all I could think over and over again is Human. All too Human. Human. Human. Human.

As are all of you. And yet, we keep discarding that belief in others and presuming to keep it for ourselves. Even if what they did was wrong, callus and horrific, they remain human, like all of us, human, broken, sinful, wrong, capable of great wrong, and still, fully human. One does not lose humanity by daring to think differently, or by opposing what is popular, or by being flawed, or being old, or being young, or being unborn or by having failed mightily, or by having engaged even in great evil.  Even the abortionist, even the pedophile, even the terrorist, remains human. Nothing divorces our souls from being souls. 

Praying and even loving our enemies, foreign and domestic, political and social, is a direct command from Christ, a direct instruction on how to "turn the other cheek."  Hate can only be diffused by love.  Christ willed himself to stay on that cross to the end, until the last drop fell, until He knew he could say, "It is finished." because of love.  He didn't hold onto the hurt, He held onto the nails.  He could have come down from that cross, but He didn't, because He held onto those nails for our sake. 

And then I went to a blog where a mother journals her struggle to care for a child with a condition that fused her fingers into mittens, and her cranial plates, and I can see from her pictures, from her writng, this is a family that has embraced their daughter and seeks to love her as fiercely and as perfectly as possible.

And I know, this is what we are called to be, to be fully human. All made in the image of God, and beloved by God and made to love as God loves, even those we see not doing their part, not seemingly worthy or educated enough or polished enough or beautiful enough, still supposed to be beloved by us. Human. Human. Human.

Hold onto those nails.  Hold onto the words, "Father Forgive them, for they know not, what they do." It is the only way to remind the world, of how it was truly intended to be. 

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Book of Penelope Update and The Book of Helen

Wrote this for my Facebook page, but since more people read the blog, I'm posting it here.

What have I been up to? Well, writing took a back seat in the month of March and April. I am listening to the Iliad on CD and it's very well done. Additionally, hearing it, you get something of the experience of the early Greeks and how the poem was intended, and thus those vivid descriptions stay with you in a way they don't when you're... going through the marathon equivalent of words. You hear more of the side stories, they pop.

I'm also slowly reading the Odyssey. My tendency in reading, as in writing, is to race through words. Being deliberate feels very Penelope to me, hers is a pensive reflective intellect as opposed to Odysseus's crafty and often impulsive mind. They are complimentary but not entirely opposite, as both she and he enjoy riddles, games of the mind, and strategies. He just loves the accolades of revealing his brilliance to the world --hubris, whereas she finds satisfaction in trying to get the right answer.

The Problem with Penelope...

Penelope's hubris is more subtle, a conviction she can find the right answer in all situations, and that hers is the right answer. She errs toward being self satisfied by her efforts, knowing she's exhausted the options. That doesn't seem bad, and it isn't necessarily, but relying solely on one's own mind, can mean one doesn't see the options others might think of, and having full faith and credit in one's own decisions, does not mean other choices are not valid if they disagree. She's like a writer, who has to learn to hear edits and suggestions if she would make her work better than it is. (Not me you understand, but every other writer in the world--sorry, channeling Helen there for a moment).

Additionally, drawing Penelope out in words remains a challenge, as she is an introvert. She reluctantly takes the center stage, but knows what is expected of her and will perform to her utmost, whereas Helen was and remains the ultimate extroverted celebrity who wouldn't understand why anyone wouldn't want the stage in the first place, but gets that if anyone should get the stage, it should be her. Even when I'm writing about Penelope, Helen is there poking my shoulder, "Hey, what about me?" I need a character exorcism, but in the meantime, she's useful in that I just think, what would Helen do, then how would Penelope do that in contrast, it helps sharpen the story.

Last bit of writing business...

The Book of Helen is up for a critical review at Catholicfiction.net on May 9th, and being reviewed by Eat Sleep Write some time in the next few weeks. I need to start looking for conventions where I can plug Helen and introduce her to others. I need to create some physical drawings from the book for display, for physical events. I'm sifting through the book to determine what scenes would convey best.

Here, we run into a little problem, as one reviewer noted, we don't know specifically what Helen looks like. That decision was deliberate on my part, as she is an archetype, and whatever we paint, will fall short, so rendering her becomes more difficult as that would stamp her for all the world. But I did have a vision of how she looked, so I'm going with that image when I draw. I'll post when Helen is satisfied with my work. I've also been told by others who do book promotions to create a short film/trailer, (except I don't know how to do that). Maybe I'll ask my teens over the summer to take this on for me.

Monday, April 21, 2014

How to Get a Baby to Come (Not Really)

*Inspired by a cousin and his wife, who are expecting a baby any day now.  Please do not start rumors about me.  

Having weathered ten successful pregnancies, I can tell anyone who asks with absolute certainty, there is no way to make those people get a move on absent a petocin drip, and sometimes, even that doesn't work.  Nope.  Best to understand now before the kiddo shows up, these little people, despite their small size, have minds of their own and schedules that do not consult you.  

But when I was expecting, I got all kinds of kindly advice about how to make the babies arrive ahead of schedule, most of them about as useful as hiccup cures, and being based on about as much scientific evidence. 

5) Eat something.  Usually, around 8 months, I'd begin getting suggestions from local establishments about how if I ate #14 on the a'la carte menu, I'd be pushing the latest kid out before the dinner rush.  These testimonies often included vivid descriptions of flooding said restaurant, or deliveries I could take out and take home.  They also often resulted in sad faces on said owners of establishments when I'd deliberately opt not to eat whatever it was, if only to be able to return again some other day and not die of embarrassment.  

4) Whatever you do, you're doing it wrong.  I found if I was exercising, the general consensus was rest.  If I was resting, "You should exercise." The bottom line, everything not causing a contraction must be preventing it.  

3) Smells.  There is something about having a belly the size of a basketball that makes strangers want you to sniff things.  Note to eager perfume hawkers, cigar experts and other fans of aroma based therapy, it doesn't work.   It does however make the pregnant woman nauseated, which one might suspect is a bad idea. 

2) Lucky hats, socks, coats, maternity sweaters...if they were lucky, you used it up. But they are probably just hats, socks, coats and maternity sweaters you happened to be wearing when the little timer in your kiddo finally popped up and said, time to get going!

1)  The only thing I know works is this: Go about making plans. Make them fun. Make them big.  Get to work on making them happen. Eventually, the baby will disrupt plans.

Friday, April 18, 2014

FYI

No Blogging until Easter Monday. 

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Heaven is Real Discussion

My husband and I try to pray Saint Louis Marie de Montfort's Total Consecration to Jesus through Mary.  Some years we do better than others.  

But the language often trips us up, and nearly always sparks a discussion, most often around the absolute certainty of our being able to never do anything good save via God's grace.  It would seem then, the only free acts we have, are to sin, i.e. not cooperate, or to cooperate, and that no virtue should be attributed to the individual for cooperating, since that was the result of God's grace proposing God's will first, and our response to it.  It leads to statements like "we are nothing but worms..." and other such phrases that don't sit well. 

Shouldn't we if we do not merit Heaven by either words or deeds, then be shooting to mold our wills to God's so as to qualify for Purgatory?  the discussion went.  

Should we be worried so much about merit? was another part of the discussion. 

Multiple saints engage in this constant re-joiner of being worthless and useless absent God's will and abundant grace.  Blessed Mother Teresa called herself God's pencil, making herself the passive tool by which God's word could be written, but which could generate nothing on her own. 

But asking to be God's pencil, wasn't that a sign of merit so to speak, of being willing, just as the Blessed Mother said, "Behold I am the handmaid of the Lord."  And so the discussion became, can one claim any part of merit in being good?  

I said no, we do, but no. 
My husband said yes, and that to do otherwise is false humility, we are weighed, measured, our words and our deeds, and given the dose of mercy and justice plus a surplus of love that we dolloped out.  I didn't disagree, but we did still work around those words.  Do we really have to be comfortable saying we're worth less than worthless?  We could cite scripture pro and con, remember thou art dust, and made in God's image.  Both and, a contradiction. 

Then I read the former mayor Bloomberg's article in the New York Times.

Mr. Bloomberg was introspective as he spoke, and seemed both restless and wistful. When he sat down for the interview, it was a few days before his 50th college reunion. His mortality has started dawning on him, at 72. And he admitted he was a bit taken aback by how many of his former classmates had been appearing in the “in memoriam” pages of his school newsletter.

But if he senses that he may not have as much time left as he would like, he has little doubt about what would await him at a Judgment Day. Pointing to his work on gun safety, obesity and smoking cessation, he said with a grin: “I am telling you if there is a God, when I get to heaven I’m not stopping to be interviewed. I am heading straight in. I have earned my place in heaven. It’s not even close.”


I called my husband and read him the pull quote.  I am now going to have to work to merit purgatory for gloating online, and for envisioning with no small amount of mischief in my heart, Mayor Bloomberg in Heaven waiting for someone, anyone to interview him. 

Friday, April 11, 2014

7 Quick Takes

1.  I forgot to post a link to yesterday's Small Success Thursday, so here's one now.
Come join us over at Catholicmom.com to share your week of successes!

 
2.  Decision Time!  She chose it for the art program. It's an intense 79 hours worth of course work in art, including a showing at the art gallery every semester.


The campus is beautiful, it's small and surrounded by gorgeous trees, beautiful architecture and the beach.  But what I think tickled her heart the most, was their crest: 
Which in turn generated this: 
http://legacy.flagler.edu/products/hogwarts-t-shirt
 
3.  We're deep in birthday paloozah now, with Faith's party with her friends tonight, and Regina's actual birthday Sunday, and the need to schedule her party with her friends for after Easter.  Tonight, it's pizza and the second installment of the Hobbit  for Faith and her friends while the boys take in Captain America with their dad.  The older girls will be holding down the fort with the littles and a separate showing of probably Frozen, but they don't know that yet.   
 
I've seen it.  It's a b-movie except for the production value and power ballad.
 
It's immature and sophomoric...I still laughed.  
 
Then there's the hilarious fund raiser Simcha Fisher did where she promised to sing Let it go if they raised $4000, they did.  You can help her friend with the start up business and watch her sing in fulfillment of the pledge here.  I love when she says "Oh shoot."
 
4. Our son Paul is starting to talk and that's leading to interesting and unexpected conversations.  Yesterday, Regina's teacher came over to visit with me in the van in the parking lot. She reached over and chatted with Anna who gave her lots of smiles and was equally chatty back.  Paul looked over and said, "HEY! I'm Over Here!"  So she stopped and said I see you there. He nodded his head, all was right with the world. 
 
5.  Hey Sherry, how is the writing coming?  Well, slowly, but more frequently.  I logged in 3K on The Soul of the Minotaur this week, and 1K on Penelope, who seems to be stepping forward a bit more.   
 
6.   This week is the Erma Bombeck Conference, and I see many of my friends hosting the seminars, and it's hard to not be there, it's hard to feel like this year, writing has been at best, thwarted.  Bad computer, bad timing, I'd planned to host two seminars at the Catholic Writer's Conference Online, but that fell through because of a family emergency, it was scheduled for the Monday following Dad's death.  I cancelled because I didn't know 1) how I would be and 2) where I would be.   I'd submitted The Book of Helen for a few opportunities, but so far, it's like a bad fishing trip, nothing is biting.  I'm reminded of my dad's story about praying to his mother for a fish, and catching a beautiful speckled trout almost immediately, and it was the only fish of the day,  Admittedly, I'd like to get a line in the water this year.  Successfully finishing the second book would be the equivalent of a pretty good fish in my case.    
 
7.  Sacrament Season Starts soon.   We've got one month to First Communion, two months to confirmation and three months until my newest niece gets baptized.  
Marc will be the Godfather. 
 
That's seven, it was more work than I thought it would be.  Happy Palm Sunday and hav a good Holy Week.
 

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Being a Crocus

It has been winter so long, I think people don't quite believe spring will come.  I believe, it is why God made crocuses, those over eager flowers that bloom first, sometimes surrounded by snow.


It's a funny thing, we all know we need food, water, shelter, and friends to make life bearable, but we forget that within those larger categories, in each of them, is something more.  We don't just want a house, we want a home.  We don't just want food, we want it to be good, warming, revitalizing.  We don't just want to know people who know us, we want some deeper connection, real community, family, friends that run deeper than likes and dislikes.  We want people who know us, and still love us.    What we want in all of those generic categories, is beauty.   "For beauty will save the world." --Dostoevsky

Deliberate design, art, competent cuisine, thoughtful planning, exposure to thoughts and music, all of these come from someone else seeking to carve out of the every day, a slice of greater pleasure than can be found in mere substance and shelter and somebodies.  We all know this, and yet we forget.  A day where you open the mail box and find a love letter, is a brighter day than one with only junk mail.  A garden full of blooms fills something we don't even know we need.  The smells of something baking elicit a smile before the first bite.   A favorite song makes people sit up, start to dance, sing, smile, even if before, the mood was much duller.  

So today, we are charged to be crocuses, who in turn will inspire others to do the same.   Be deliberate in cultivating beauty for others.

Put on fun music, start a book you've put off that you want to read. Plan your dinner so people will when they ask, "What's for dinner," respond with "Yum." when they hear the answer.  Roasted Rosemary chicken with roasted potatoes, green beans, Caesar salad and mixed berry pie is on our menu. Play a piece on the piano, sing even if you can't.   Write a letter to someone saying "I love you" and why.  Mail it.  

Because the world right now needs to know, to witness crocuses dotting the landscape of life, that spring is here, hope is coming, and there will be and is more than mere existence right now.

Happy Last two weeks of Lent.


Saturday, April 5, 2014

Cassandra Question for All of Us

Cassandra tells the truth and no one believes her.  By the time they know it to be truth, it doesn't matter.  I'm wondering, are we Troy?

Brendan Eich was forced to quit.

His crime?

Donating $1,000 to support a marriage amendment in California -- eight years ago.

 The firing of the Mozilla CEO for daring to have a non popular opinion is telling, and chilling.  How long before anyone who wishes to hold office must give a loyalty oath to prove they aren't out of touch with whatever the powers think important?  We now live in a world  where retroactive vindictiveness is harnessed to create a Social Media Hulk Smash Flash mob that uses prior actions and opinions to destroy the designated target in the present.  Lovely!  What could go wrong?

All of this is done to create a new society, one which tolerates, but not you...and not you....and not you.  Mobs that win through mob actions or at least silence opposition, don't dissipate, they rage on, they look for new victims, emboldened by the successes.  Others will see, Mozilla caved, and new attempts to purge corporations and other organizations of anyone who once or currently holds a position of power who espoused wrong thinking or contributed to the wrong political party will emerge.  Why?  Because it theoretically worked in this circumstance.  

But this sort of behavior on a societal level, it doesn't bring good, it doesn't create understanding and it certainly doesn't evangelize tolerance.  It promotes the equivalent of thumbs up thumbs down.  All we're doing now, is determining who the next meal is for the lions. 

The problem with this social media driven resignation/socially demanded firing is it wasn't based on anything but disagreement with a position.  Judgment and verdict in one swoop, for expressing an opinion once upon a time that people disagree with now. 

No reason, no mercy, no discussion, no grey areas, no belief that anyone can ever think differently, was involved.  Just the rage that the present selected opinion wasn't always the opinion, and fear on the part of those surrounding the man, of what would happen if they did not capitulate.  

But the message sent by sending him packing, was no one should have ever thought differently.

And that sort of non thinking disguised as ideological righteousness is dangerous.  If you agree with the prevailing wind, you have nothing to worry about...unless you used to disagree with the prevailing wind, or until that day when you might.  Diversity of opinion is no longer tolerated.  

The standard reaction to this sort of a post by those who approve of the virtual dismissal of this person is to say, pshaw, that's just hyperbole, we're still a reasonable people.

We aren't ...insert unreasonable action here.  It's just HE shouldn't be thinking this way because he's in a position of power.

No one believes Cassandra, but our freedom of speech, our freedom of expression, our freedom of religion is being eroded in favor of everyone being "tolerant" by in no way differing.  

The purpose of our country is to allow people to think as they will, believe as they will, even if we disagree.  People are supposed to be legally able to create businesses and do the work and not have to pass a political, ideological litmus test to do so.   Politicizing everything in order to mold it to our own satisfaction is a lousy crazy way to live. I have friends with whom I disagree on multiple things, even important things, but they are still my friends because we see each other as human beings first, and that what is valuable in the other, is beyond where we differ.

People are still free to do so, but incidents like this erode the moral diversity of our society.   The cases against those who wish to operate their business under certain moral parameters like Hobby Lobby or the baker in Colorado, or the photographer in Arizona, are examples.  Our country no longer allows for live and let live. No, not agreeing, past or present, is designated as some sort of irreparable psychological harm, that must be censured. It's speak, speak perfectly, donate perfectly, align yourself politically correctly,  or die.  (business wise). 

The public nature of the consequence of a perceived act by those who perceived it to be hateful and declared it as such, should chill anyone who has ever entered or ever might enter into the public square.  Personal Political expression has just become a permanent threat to livelihood, no matter your acts. Your past is present, all sins equally fatal if judged guilty.  Every business is affected by what happened to Mozilla.  All it takes is one real or imagined grievance, and a committed individual to whip up a storm.   We have been to a person, doused with moral kerosene.  All that is needed, is for life to provide the match.

True tolerance, does not involve demanding the head of the other in capitulation.  True tolerance reveals the error of the other side through something other than sacking, vilifying or destroying livelihoods and mocking people for daring to disagree.  Look at Martin Luther King Jr., or Ghandi, or Pope John Paul the II, all three of these people faced evils they knew to be evil, and they managed to bring about a change in the hearts of peoples, whole peoples, not by firing people or declaring the other side evil, but by simply standing out against what they knew to be wrong.  

If the goal is to change hearts, threatening people's livelihood if they voted or donated a certain way may create a climate of complicit silence, but it isn't tolerance.  It's tyranny, it's mob rule, it's simply switching who is the bully and who is the bullied. 

If one wants a world where bullying is acceptable, carry on, and understand, one day, each of us will be on the losing side of whosoever has the greatest force and momentum. 

If you are really against bullying, if you really want tolerance, if you really want a world where COEXIST means something, you can't demand everyone act, think, speak, vote and work all the same way.  It's like demanding that all restaurants be five star, but serve McDonald's.  You have to allow for more than right and left, Republican and Democrat, secular and religious, you have to allow for diversity of thinking and the manifestation of that thinking in real life, as applied in work, play, association, business policies, family life, everything, all things. past and present.  

There is a great spectrum of diversity of being in this world.  We are all beautiful souls, and we are called to love all souls, to hope we will have the distinct pleasure of knowing each other, all each others for all of eternity.  That isn't tolerance, that's love, that's fellowship, that's a deeper community than can be generated via hunting down anyone and eventually everyone who fails to meet the ever moving standards of acceptability within the culture.   The prevailing thinking that all is relative means that limited parameters of tolerance are forever moving, excluding more and more always in favor of the new, which must necessarily dismiss the old.  

Do I feel sorry for a CEO?  No, it's not a case of pity for the rich man, it's a question of what type of society will we be.  Will we now have a free society, which does not declare whatever is not popular is immoral and illegal, or will we be slaves to fashion and politics and the forces that demand ideological fealty retroactively for all of time as proof of the purity of their own positions and vindication?  Will our society tolerate anyone being out of touch with whatever is not yet decided?  Can any of us endure such a scrutiny?  I would say, if the eyes of the world are turned on us, there is not one of us that would not be withered by the experience.  Such a world will not end well.

So here's my Cassandra question: How will we love if we will only tolerate perfection? Will we be able to bear the realness of being if we keep deciding that we can bear less and less of what it means to be real?

I know where I'd rather live.  I'm just not sure how we hold onto it.  

 

Leaving a comment is a form of free tipping. But this lets me purchase diet coke and chocolate.

If you sneak my work, No Chocolate for You!