Sunday, May 25, 2008

“If you were all alone in the universe with no one to talk to, no one with which to share the beauty of the stars, to laugh with, to touch, what would be your purpose in life? It is other life, it is love, which gives your life meaning. This is harmony. We must discover the joy of each other, the joy of challenge, the joy of growth.”
Mitsugi Saotome (b. 1937) [via Jesus Needs New PR]

Monday, May 19, 2008

Contact by Twyla Toews

the point where the sun and the horizon meets
reverberates with passion
and the water misses the shore
until they touch
it's the contact of the rock and pond
that creates the uniformity of circles
rippling outward
the sweet caress of sonic waves
against the eardrum, bliss
is the embrace of light and the eye, sweet
is the blend of spices that dances with the tongue
in closed position, breath on skin
scent winds through emotion
and the wind and trees unite in this
music of connection


I haven't seen Prince Caspian yet, but since it was the "No. 1 Movie" this weekend, let's revisit what that wonderful little book was about:

Prince Caspian is about beer. {continue...}
[via slacktivist]

Monday, May 12, 2008

Their Identities Among Many

Perhaps precisely because Evangelicals have had the experience of acquiring massive political power and squandering it, they are singularly qualified to provide a lesson to American Muslims, who have virtually no power as a religious community. When religion becomes inextricably tied to partisan politics, it can be bought and sold like stocks, simultaneously cheapening the faith and corrupting the secular principles of liberal government. Addressed to every faith community in the US, the Evangelical Manifesto is a warning American Muslims should heed. To be accepted as full members of a liberal polity, they have to be prepared to accept that their profession of faith is just one feature of their identities among many, and not the one that should dictate their engagement with politics.
[via Jewcy, HT: The View From Her]

The Range of Possibilities

Israel is in the midst of celebrating 60 years of independence. Palestinians, on the other hand, grieve the loss of their homes and lands. The papers are filled with essays, articles, and op-ed pieces that wrestle with the issue. Some from a Palestinian angle, others from an Israeli one. As I have noted elsewhere, I find myself caught in the middle of a nearly century old dispute. Part of the problem is that the parties involved have yet to come up with a solution that would be acceptable to all parties -- including within their own communities. Thee are Jews and Palestinians supportive of a two state-solution. There are others, on both sides that take an all or nothing perspective. There are still others, more Palestinian than Jewish that look to a one-state secular democratic solution. To go that route, of course, would mean abandoning the idea of a Jewish state.

Further complicating the issue are the facts on the ground. There is the idea of a right of possession. Who has claim to property -- the ones who held title sixty years ago, some who still have keys to their old houses, or the ones living three now -- who perhaps are the second or third owner since possession changed?

To get a sense of the range of possibilities, consider some of the pieces that have appeared the last couple of days. {continue...}
[via Ponderings on a Faith Journey]

When you are on the same page, but a different paragraph, it's easy to doodle in the margins.

Sunday, May 11, 2008

Prayer for All Who Are Abused by Vienna Cobb Anderson
[via The Owl's Song, HT: Emotional Abuse and Your Faith]

Just A Moment

My friend shared one such moment the other day. He’s got a number of challenges ahead of him and in some ways he’s trying to face them alone. When I asked him what would happen if he found himself face to face with one particular thing he struggled with, his response was simple, “I’ve never done that particular thing, so it shouldn’t be a problem.”

And in some sense, he had never done the thing in question. But the truth is that everything you’ve ever done is something you once had never done. Everything in this life has a starting point. A moment where it leaps from never to first time.

Maybe it’s slow, the daily build up of rain washing against your walls. Maybe it’s unexpected, a storm colliding against you with waves and water you never dreamed could be so deep. But in that moment when you stand on the top of your damn and can see the water rising, don’t try to go it alone. Reach out to a friend. Wake up your neighbors. Ring the church bell.

Because in this damn life, it’s just so easy for never to turn into first time ever.
[via Stuff Christians Like]

Deserved It The Most

“I’m sorry you met me.” I said through angry, frightened tears. I was desperate for her to go, to pull away from me so I could inflict pain on only one person. The person I felt deserved it the most. Me.

“I love you.” She yelled through the phone.

“How can you say that? That doesn’t make any sense.” I responded.

“You don’t get to decide who I love. I love you. That’s my decision. You can’t take that away from me. I love you. I choose to love you.” She repeated words like these over and over again. She attacked me with love that day. And forgiveness I didn’t deserve. Forgiveness I couldn’t earn or make sense of.

I was overwhelmed that day. {the rest...}
[via The Prodigal Jon]

Detecting Mysteries

Fictional Clergy Detectives
Fictional Clergy Detectives II
Fictional Detectives III
[via Levellers]

What would Mother’s Day be without some gentle musical satire?

Glad you asked. {continue...}
[via get it? got it. good., HT: The View From Her]

Friday, May 09, 2008

Living simply and living poorly are matters of generosity.
Simply living and poorly living are matters of miserliness.