3 thoughts on “Sunday’s Sermon

  1. It has been my experience that people need spirituality in their lives; at least that I need sprituality in my life. Without it, a loss of meaning and connection occurs. However, this need and fulfillment has been found (to a greater degree of late) in other ways beyond more traditonal and widespread ‘religion’. I know it has for me.

    I knew I was major pissed off at our local Mennonite minister (who is a friend of mine, by the way) when he pontificated one day about how families needed to look after their elders as opposed to making assisted living arrangements. While he was going ‘off’ I flashed back on when my mom had a fall 8 years ago due to her Alzheimers, and how I had to spend the next two weeks diapering and trying to feed her until we could obtain an emergency placement at a local VIHA facility. The nurses at Emergency told me to, “Just leave her here in Emergency and walk away”. But no, in shifts we did what we could and I don’t think I slept for the entire two weeks. As my minister friend expounded on his theories I experienced several revelations, (excuse the Sunday/Biblical pun). One, I asked myself how many diapers he had changed for his mom?, and knew that in a similar situation his wife would be doing all the changing for sure! Two, how on earth has he evolved in his discourse to simply expound on his ideas as if they were undeniably and obviously true and most right? Then, it hit me. Every Sunday this man has been standing in front of our local congregation doing same, and it has been received and reinforced over and over by an intent and focused listenening audience. Coupled with the fact that he absolutely believes with all his heart that the Bible is the literal word of God, and that its wisdom is filtered and flowing out of his lips and into the ears and soul of his parishoners, well….a lot of ‘bad habits’ have been allowed to metastisize.

    I accept the organized “Day of Worship” is well intentioned and something people need. However, I have decided for now and in future to say Grace and Give Thanks in my mind, privately, and to myself throughout the day and when it strikes me to do so.

    Some of you may be interested in the linked article. From same: “Looking at this progression, the Dalai Lama’s words came back to me. The animating force behind life simplification has gone from religious to secular, from ethics to optimizing and minimizing, from values (morality) to value (more for less).”

    Article title: “Is God a Four letter Word”
    Author: Vikki Robbins co-author of “Your Money or Your Life”
    http://www.resilience.org/stories/2017-09-06/is-god-a-4-lettered-word/

    Liked by 3 people

  2. Thanks for your thoughts, Paul. Your words remind me once again why I thought you were an excellent student back in those early days in Arts 1. I believe that “How many diapers have you changed for your Mom?” is an excellent response to all who disappear into another imagined world peopled with beings who never need them.

    There are, I have learned, a number of ways to connect to something larger than ones own ego. (I remember for example my days in mathematics when a great feeling came from solving problems by suddenly SEEING the solution. Or, in philosophy when suddenly understanding “the Absurd” in a profound way, or in literature when seeing suddenly beyond the words on the page the “vision of life” that the author was presenting.) People have done so for centuries by imagining an “other world” with gods, spirits, angels, etc. – untouched by shit. But, of course, we live and die in this world – witness to acts of good and evil and to the overwhelming power of nature.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. As much as I continue to bristle at the name “The Brights” I do agree with the vision:
    Our nations, cultures, politics, genders, occupations, interests, and so on differ widely. However, we are generally “in sync” with one another because we share a worldview that is free from supernatural and mystical elements. We are set apart in a broad sense from those who have worldviews that embrace such elements, whether entities such as deities, or forces, or both. Most of us find our naturalistic worldview regarding “ultimate beliefs” marginalized in the society in which we live (perhaps utterly disparaged, or even proscribed). Our common interest is to work in varied ways to change this situation for the better. Persons are not excluded from the Brights by politics or other characteristics.

    Liked by 1 person

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