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Showing posts from April 22, 2012

Political hypocrisy from Speaker Boehner

The following is a quotation from the Speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives Rep. John Boehner (R. Ohio)

His words are in the context of a legislative effort to extend the lower interest rates for student loans for one more year. This matter is being debated in the house of Representatives

Representatives who are members of the Democratic Party are in favour of this extension. They believe that it should be off-set by a revision of tax policies which give “breaks” to the big oil companies.

Representatives who are members of the Republican Part are in favour of this extension. They believe that it should be off-set by reductions in health care programmes for women.

Here is how Rep. Boehner put it:

“Why do people insist that we have a political fight?” Boehner said. “People want to politicize this because it’s an election year, but my God, do we have to fight about everything? “Now we’re going to have a fight over women’s health. Give me a break,” 
Give me a break about women’s heal…

Miss Penne failed her Canine elegance test

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After my rants I move to cats.

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My cats sometimes like each other. They are resting on a Union Flag "throw" - a gift from my cousin Janet. Senior cat Ada is on the left, Junior cat Adelaide on the right.  Ada, from time to time, asserts her authority and "bats" Adelaide who is then sent scattering to the wind.



Junior Cat Adelaide loves to sit on the window sill in the late afternoon.  Here she is, viewed through the sheer curtains  (1)



Junior Cat Adelaide loves to sit on the window sill in the late afternoon.  Here she is, viewed through the sheer curtains  (2)

On not attending Church two weeks in a row (3)

Careful readers of this blog will have noticed that I often write “G-d”, or “The Holy One”.  I have adopted this custom from Judaism which has a wise caution against the casual invocation of the name of “The Eternal One”
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To name something or someone is (in some fashion) an expression of a very limited human understanding.

When I see a cat I say “there is a cat”.

When I see a friend I say “hello Harry”.

I know these words, but they in no way express the meaning of “cat-ness” or “Harry-ness”.

Similarly I know the word “God”, but knowing that word does not mean that I have any deep inkling of God-ness.

That is why, in solidarity with my Jewish friends, I am sometimes wary of naming G-d.

It is important that my religious experience be rooted in awe and wonder, rather than in ** chumminess.

If the Creator is  awesome (and I believe that s/he must be so), then I will pray to that Creator not as “my best friend”, but as to a Being who is entirely above and beyond me -  viz: the Holy One.

Su…

On not attending Church two weeks in a row (2)

I added this comment to my own blog entry yesterday since a couple of folks thought that I was referring to a particular parish

"For clarification - my musings are rooted in my experiences in congregations in general (six where I have worshiped in SW FL,  and four where I was Rector in MA) - not in any parish in particular."

That having been said, my concern is about the busy, cluttered, noisy and unfocussed nature of much of Church life.

I confess that as a Rector I often thought “the busier the better”, and was rarely if ever open to the heartfelt desire of many parishioners: i.e. to clear away the clutter, and to enable prayer and the practise of the presence of G-d.

Now that I am on the “other side of the altar/pulpit” I have an acute awareness that Church services are not often the best vehicles for:

1.  our encounters with the Holy One;

2.  our sense of dependence upon G-d;

3.our experience of awe and wonder;

4. the ability to listen to what G-d might be telling us fro…

On not attending Church two weeks in a row

I didn’t go to Church this morning.  That’s the second Sunday in a row.

 I sometimes need to miss Church so that I can discern whether or not I value and need it.

That sounds fairly self centred, and it probably is. At one level I know that I need the discipline of shared worship, a discipline which can move me away from my hubris and self-sufficiency.

But I didn’t go to Church last week or this because Church is the last place on earth where I can pray; the last place on earth where I can expect God’s Word to speak to me. 

It’s all too busy, too cluttered, too noisy, too un-focussed.  It tries to please too many people for too many reasons.

Church can be very (or fairly) entertaining.  It can be informative.  It can be a pleasant enough place to meet my friends and colleagues.

There are many other groups and places at which I can be entertained and informed.  There are many other groups and places at which I can meet my friends and colleagues. G-d is present in those groups and place…