Sunday, March 31, 2013

Happy Easter, Fellow Humans

It is Easter and we are living away from family, but there's always somebody who wants to be treated as family, especially on holidays when so many are unavailable because they are busy with their blood families.  We've not really done any entertaining since we moved to this small condo, but we decided to resurrect our hospitality skills just for today. We're sharing the spotlight with our next door neighbor couple; she from Venezuela and he a good old American man.

The plan is that they will provide bread, beverages, and dessert. They are also providing a table big enough to seat six people.We're making smoked salmon stuffed eggs (After all, what is Easter without boiled eggs?), on an "Easter grass" bed of lettuce presented in the bowl I made in pottery class. This will be accompanied by a second appetizer of Brie baked with our homemade chutney made from pears that we got from my Mountain Mama's son's pear trees. The crackers will be displayed on another of my pottery pieces, and the salad course will simply be fresh asparagus tossed with Greek dressing and Feta cheese crumbles. i'm displaying this on the only piece of our china to survive Hurricane Katrina.

For our entree, which will also be displayed on a pottery piece I made, Beef Wellington will be served. Alongside the beef will be new potatoes, prepared in a way that our dear friend, Mary Jane from Coker Creek, generously shared on Facebook, just in time for our holiday feast. Those tiny little green beans that the French call haricot verte will be tossed in butter to complete the picture perfect presentation.

Here's the thing. All of us sharing this day have given up on organized religion, feeling that how we share our hearts is how we share our sacred spirits. All four of the men attending put their lives on the line in one of our wars. I am honored to be able to help make a holiday special for one man from each branch of our country's armed services.

I owe much appreciation to Kelly Landrum, my pottery teacher for making a dream come true for me.  I've never been considered artistically talented. I couldn't even color inside the lines, and my penmanship grades were abominable. I had always dreamed of being able to craft in clay, but was afraid to try. Kelly introduced me to a whole new world of creativity, something very akin to cooking, but that will last past the meal that sets on it.

I owe my neighbor, Maite, for miraculously believing that I was the person to tutor her in English, and my neighbor Daniel for insisting that he needed me to cook for him. I owe my long-time photographer friend Sheik for always sharing his enthusiasm for all things New Orleans and all of humanity with me through his fabulous photographs. But most of all, I am blessed beyond belief by the generosity of my husband. Without his sacred soul reaching out to me (with much prompting by my friend Queenie), I'd have nothing and nobody now.

Happy Easter. May you always have humans in your life resurrecting parts of your own Sacred Spirit.

Saturday, March 30, 2013

Resurrection and Relationships

I wish I could say that yesterday, I nailed my selfishness to the cross and that tomorrow I'll be a Sacred Spiritual being without a body to keep leading my spirit astray. I wish that all the scars on my psyche would only be a memory, and that all the wounds I've inflicted on others had simply disappeared, leaving in their places holy communion with all whose lives I've touched and by whom I've been touched.

Perhaps if I had died physically yesterday, this may all be true, but I am still a physical being. It matters not how much of The Sacred Spirit I have in me; I still have human needs. Even Jesus, who had a huge amount of The Sacred Spirit in his human manifestation needed food, drink, friendships, and time to himself. And Jesus made it clear that while he was willing to suffer and die with us for the resolution of the sins we commit against The Sacred Spirit in physical manifestations, he also made it clear that we owe each other healing of wounds that we have inflicted. He did not remove the thieves from their crosses; he allowed them to make restitution to their society by their deaths.

How do we go about resurrecting relationships that have been mortally wounded, other than by withdrawing our physical selves and hoping that The Sacred Spirit that we've shared eventually overcomes the pain the the relationships produced. There is always an empty spot in a soul that loses the physical presence of a deeply loved one in this earthly life. We seek to fill the emptiness with something; we often fill it with anger or even hatred. The struggle is to lose the physical pleasure of the person and to consciously focus on filling the soul with The Sacred Spirit of the person that you've so loved and by whom you've been loved.

Imagine the strength of The Sacred Spirit Jesus shared in his lifetime on earth that when he asked his friends to keep his spirit burning in their souls and lives to share with others, The Sacred Spirit is still growing over two thousand years later.  I hope the strength of my shared spark of The Sacred Spirit can salve the pain I've caused. I will probably miss the physical presence of many of my most loved ones, as long as I inhabit this body, but never will I lose The Sacred Spirit that they shared with me.

Friday, March 29, 2013

A Master (Mistress?) of Ministry

All of the conversation about Pope Francis washing the feet of females who may have been Muslim has got me thinking again of a recent day that glows brightly in my memory.

Both my daughter and her youngest daughter are very particular about who they allow to touch them. I applaud them on this, except when it's my touch that they're avoiding. My daughter is extremely protective of her two daughters, physically, mentally, and morally. I also applaud this, as I'm a firm believer in  authority being attached to responsibility.

Several months ago, this granddaughter revealed that, although she'd like to have a pedicure, her mother had not allowed her to do so. Her mother was with us when she made this statement, and agreed that I could take the teen and her older sister for a pedicure. Because my daughter had heard horror stories about fungus imparted from the soaking tubs, and being the due diligence type, researched how to make sure your salon is following proper pedi-tub procedure. This included asking how long the salons disinfected between clients.

I had seen enough of my salon to know that a quick spray and swish was all their pedi-tubs got between my toes and the next set. Not wanting to carry the burden of guilt (not to mention my "mother ain't happy" tones and looks) should I choose a less than sterile environment for my precious daughter's precious daughter's toes, I aborted the mission...until their next trip to Louisiana.

I planned with my daughter to have a surprise day with her and her daughter who had never had a pedicure. I arranged with one of my most glamorous friends to create a spa day at her house. She took us to the beauty supply store where we purchased everything necessary to do a spa pedi, as instructed on the internet. The afternoon was spent in my friend's delightful company, and that of her two dogs, with my friend massaging my loved ones' legs and making their toes twinkle.

What a wonderful day it was for me, watching my daughter and her daughter succumb to the gentle female ministrations of my friend, something that my daughter has never been prone to doing. And even more marvelous for me is how happy it made my friend to wash the feet of my daughter and granddaughter. She lovingly talks about it several months after the event.

This is my idea of ministering to each other.

Thursday, March 28, 2013

Save the Males!

I have a third-grade teacher friend who is worried about the future of males; I share her concern. She believes we need a movement to "save the males;" I believe the males need to take seriously the need to save themselves and their unique contributions to society. Women's choices have been unleashed by effective conception control, and men have been treating our new options as a cute trick that they don't have to take seriously.

My friend is a school teacher for a mostly black and Hispanic population. She has noticed that many of the boys coming to school are not ready to learn. Has this always been the case? I have heard for years that boys tend to be three years behind girls in "maturity." Girls seem to be reaching puberty earlier and earlier, while males seem to be less and less fertile. If we hold boys out of school for longer, will this set them back even more? Or should we put them in pre-school even earlier than their female counterparts? Maybe we simply need more men at home, setting examples of impulse control and compassionate caring.

Without forcible draft for unskilled warriors and with the advent of industrialization making brains more valuable than brawn, what is the future for those males that are not at the top of the educational ladder? Is it to be the same, or worse, than the women in the past who were not born with great physical beauty or family wealth to overcome this handicap?

We still have too many males coming into the world in old-fashioned patriarchal societies, where women defer to their infant boys' demands. Those who have impulse control will eventually control others. The female ability to wait and gestate ideas, plans, and progeny may be outpacing the need for physical superiority. What are we, as mothers, sisters, wives of the males to do? Should we hold back the females or give the males responsibilities other than procreation and protection of the children?

If we are to re-define the role of males as nurturers with greater bursts of physical energy, we must be willing to share with them the skills of nurture and nesting. How else can we hope to create true parenting partnerships? We must share with them the secrets of our own waiting periods instead of scorning them for their own "stop and start" behaviors. They must be willing to give up their macho images for the sweetly sacred innocence of a child's trust.

If we will not incorporate men into our secret societies of settling down to family life, we may be looking at a future without males. IVF is a first step to separating procreation from emotional bonding of parents. Cloning isn't very far in the future. Cells, science, and a womb are all that is necessary to create life without a male. There is now the real possibility of a world of only women. Is this the future we want to see?

Religions of the world need to take note and stop placing gender definitions on The Sacred Spirit's manifestations. It seems that our earth needs both male and female energy in order to prosper. Humans may succeed in fooling nature, but cloned life will lose part of its strength and increase part of its inherent weakness in every subsequent generation. Think of this fact from many years of animal husbandry before you answer this question.

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Blessed Be the Womb that Bore You and the Breasts that Nursed You

"Blessed be the womb that bore you and the breasts that nursed you." - Luke 11:27. There must be a reason that both mothering functions were separately honored. Many of us were born to women who, for one reason or another, were unable to "feed" us, spiritually, emotionally, mentally, physically." Very few of us can do all of these jobs and do them all well, especially for more than one child.

Many months ago, I wrote about stopping abortion through community mothering, and a minister friend who had spent years in Africa, said that children in Africa have many mothers. The birth mother is mother #1. He did go on to say that polygamy is also part of the family life in Africa, but that's another issue.

Coincidentally, a friend from another country was recently telling me about a time when the mother of her godchildren had to be away for an extended period of time to take care of a family medical emergency. My friend, who had never had nor wanted to have children of her own, stepped in as the "mother." There were times that the smallest of the children could not be soothed by any means; she instinctively put them to her dry, but welcoming breast. The babies were soothed.

Many years ago, in some areas of the country, slaves were required to do much of the mothering, never being honored as "other mothers." There is still a disproportionate number of "other mothers" being paid near-slave wages to tend to the children of the wealthy. Shouldn't we be honoring these "breasts that nurse" our children as "mothers" to them, giving them a share of our resources proportionate to the importance of the task they are taking on themselves?

I was blessed with a middle age in which I don't have to earn my own living. This freed me up to have time and energy to devote solely to being "another mother." I have tutored a perfect stranger's child in reading. I have "nursed" four grandchildren, a godchild, and the children of many neighbors and friends. I have also been refused the role as godmother by a church authority that clearly didn't understand the nature of the human elements of faith.

Both my daughter and daughter-in-law are teachers of children with special needs. My daughter's charges are from extreme poverty; those of my daughter-in-law are what we refer to as "special education" children. Both of them not only mother their own children, but participate in "mothering" many other children in their neighborhoods and schools. Both of them are in strong parenting partnerships with their spouses and several close friends, so they are able to also specialize in their own areas of "mothering" expertise.

It is time to rethink what "mothering" means and how it should be honored right here on earth. It is not enough that we write flowery verses singing of a mother's love. It is time that we impress upon our society the desperate need to be prepared to not only give birth, but to provide for all the needs a human baby has in our ever more complex society. It not only takes wombs and breasts to bring up a human baby; it takes brains, immense energy, and a huge financial commitment.

Contrary to religious reasoning of the past, children do not reach the "age of reason" at the age of eight-years-old. It is not the responsibility of an older sibling to "take care of" their little brother or sister. Only responsible adults should be tasked with such an awesome undertaking.

The only way we actually show honor is by sharing our physical resources fairly. There are no master's degrees in mothering, and our society doesn't truly honor the efforts of anyone without a specialization. Community property, as established in some states, may begin to address the inequity in the "wages" for mothering, but not all states have these laws. The nature of the marriage contract should be discussed before any marriage license is granted. Why aren't the churches advocating for this in their social justice campaigns?

There are too many babies being born by those who live only by their animal instincts, procreating and acting as if the rest of society owes it to them and their progeny to be the "breasts that nurse" their offspring. We expect our teachers to do the work that should be done in their own homes and communities. The burden is breaking the backs of our teachers and our educational system.

Perhaps we, as a society, did owe some restitution for all the years that we robbed the slave's families of the mothering energy. I know many white wealthy women who have given untold hours teaching and otherwise "mothering" the children who have few resources at home. It is time that we are realistic about honoring the "other mothers" with resources and honest authority over the burdens put on all those who are responsible parenting partners.

The issue with our old patriarchal mindset is that women are to have all the primary parenting responsibility without commensurate authority or remuneration. If we are to participate in "mothering" the children of others, we should be able to limit the numbers that we will absorb into our hearts and homes. Our society has long been too complex to need a great deal more unskilled laborers. Why are we resistant to free conception control for these less-than-responsible sexually active people?

I have retired from "mothering" because the religious right continues to look at responsibility as a personal relationship between them and their "God." The individual rights advocates refuse to admit that they are part of a community that requires rules of justice in order for partnerships (parenting and other partnerships) to work.

The "blessing" I want for the efforts of my womb, my breasts, and my brain is justice, meaning shared responsibility, shared authority, and shared resources. This, I am blessed with by my husband who did not even father my children, but I know too many women, biological mothers, teachers, nurses, cooks, waitresses, housekeepers, waitresses, clerical workers who are not equally blessed.

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Breaking Bread

As a Roman Catholic child, I was taught that my body was a temple of The Holy Spirit and that Jesus was the vine of our faith, we are all branches on this vine. We were also taught all sorts of thoughts, words and actions that would get us pruned from the vine for all eternity. There was only one way to become a part of this vine and to be re-grafted onto it if one was pruned off; this was through a priest in The Roman Catholic church.

I have been thinking of the sacraments that were supposed to instill in us extra grace for daily life, and they did. But giving all this power over to a lone priest or two in each community was a set-up for corruption. And handing the ministry over to people who had no training in humble hospitality was doomed to failure. Women for millenia have tended the home fires and the kitchen gardens. When I ask my husband to prune a peach tree, I'd best be right next to him lest he cut off the blossoms with the branches.

I understand all the grand theater and symbolism makes hearts swell and thoughts turn to gold-lined streets in a future heaven. I just don't see this as the way Jesus did things while he lived.  How and why did the humble home become not good enough for the grand celebrations of shared faith? When and how did religions become a competition for filling the most seats?

It seems to me that another way to look at the creation of the body and blood of Christianity, is not to look at the ritual consecration by the priest of a dry wafer and a bit of fruity liquid. Perhaps the transubstantiation of the bread and wine at our family dinner tables should be treated as the sacrament of changing the blessings of the planting, harvesting, preparing, serving, and sharing in eating and drinking into the earthly manifestations of The Sacred Spirit in the bodies of those who use this energy in service to the sacred earth and its inhabitants.

Do we ever wonder who cooked the loaves and fishes? Who grew and ground the wheat for the bread? Who caught and cleaned the fish? Who served the food to the masses? And what about the food and wine for The Last Sabbath Supper of Jesus? Humans gave their bodies over to the procurement, preparation, and presentation of that banquet. And somebody always has to clean up after any great gathering. Perhaps we should tithe to the "unwashed masses" who fill these functions in our daily lives.

I have a Roman Catholic friend who asks for blessings on the meals we share, ending with "and bless the cook." I feel very honored that he verbalizes appreciation for the effort that goes into putting a meal on the table. Because a person has a gift that is a humble hospitality function should not make this person's efforts invisible. Give me this kind of communion over the walk-through communion of the churches any day. This kind of communion feeds my soul so that I can be a better temple of The Sacred Spirit.

Monday, March 25, 2013

A New Age of The Sacred Spirit

Although I am loved by many, I have scared away many of my Catholic friends who honestly believe that I am damned to hell because I can't subscribe to their belief system. I saddens me that they can believe that I am damned when I so enjoy The Sacred Spirit that I see in each of them. I know the doctrine of the church, as I lived it in the marrow of my bones for most of my life.

It is true that the gifts of these friendships came through the years of Catholic school that I was awarded on scholarship. For these gifts, I am grateful. My departure from the church was based on wrongs done by the church to me, my family, and my friends. For years, I silently lived with the shame of the abuses, as my own mother regularly informed all who would listen that I was a  "not a Christian" and am a "pervert."

I have been scorned as a "heathen" and a "whore" by my own sisters and brothers. I have listened to my Catholic friends spouting "insights" that they have picked up from religious radio programs regarding the people in typhoon torn countries somehow deserving of the "wrath of God" for their lack of Christian beliefs. How could a group of people who feel their own lives to be righteous, having lived the ravages of Hurricane Katrina, be so blinded by their religion-centered prejudices?

I have heard, from the mouths of the people who have committed these acts, that they have sprinkled "holy water" on the mentally ill and on Jews to "drive out the demons." I have sat at a wedding mass and heard the priest turn people away from the "table" of "the Eucharist" who were there as supporters of the newly formed couple, simply because these people did not subscribe to the church's creed. I have heard sneering remarks from these mouths regarding the possibility of a "universal religion" as if that would be a bad thing. I have taken it upon myself to remind these friends that "Catholic" means "universal."

I have been asked to serve as the honored godmother of several children in whose lives I'm considered family, and have been banned from this honor because I had once been baptized in the church. It matters not the way we live our lives; it matters to what creed we subscribe.

I have been told that I am bitter and unforgiving, and been encouraged to approach the communion rail with my Catholic friends; this I cannot do until all my friends of every faith, color, and creed would be equally welcome. It is not about forgiveness; it is about the agony of becoming homeless because I walked away and finally revealed the sins being perpetrated and protected in my own former home.

Many of these devout Catholics sneer at "new age" religion. I pray every day that we are entering a new age of The Sacred Spirit when we are humble enough to see our own sins and confess them to one another as we sit down to our sacred feasts; when we welcome all people of responsible compassion to our community tables; when lives of loving service are more honored than the creed that one has memorized as a child; when a woman's words are as honored as those of any man, be he pope, priest, or pauper.

I have not been asked, by the perpetrators, for my forgiveness, and many of their acts that I abhor aren't in my purview to forgive. Am I to be a Judas who kisses the pope's ring while knowing that I am praying for the dissolution of the Roman Catholic church in favor of a truly Catholic community over all the earth?

Perhaps we could start with the baptism of clean water for all the earth's people, communion of enough food for all the earth's families, and a treaty to stop sacrificing sons and daughters to the god that demands blood sacrifice.

Sunday, March 24, 2013

The Religion of Minds and Mates

I learned meditation while watching a baby from the most unlikely source, my very strait-laced, very buttoned-up, neurologist husband. I had already found ways to get into a deep meditative state just before falling asleep, but I had real trouble with meditation "in the moment." Watching my husband soothe babies (I suspect while soothing himself, as people do with pets) changed all of this for me.

When he would come home from his always stressful days at the office, to a houseful of borrowed children, I would ask him to take the children for long enough that I could complete our evening meal. Having been a caterer for many years, this could usually be achieved in less than an hour. It mattered not to my husband how the babies screamed and thrashed, he would sit with the small children in his lap, repeatedly kissing the tops of their heads. The baby would soon settle down, and usually sleep.

As I would marvel at his lack of anxiety; he would simply reply, "Crying is a baby's job." The only other person I had ever seen who had this ability as a baby whisperer had been my maternal grandmother. It was beautiful to behold. The father of my children, not now my husband, had this trait. My children picked up this trait from their father, even though a divorce was in order to allow them all to embrace this.

The father of my children and I came from city stress on everyone, exacerbated by unrealistic expectations of isolated family units. When one has too many responsibilities, something has to suffer; it is usually the most vulnerable members of society.My husband comes from an animal husbandry background, where he was taught that content mamas produce healthy offspring, and safe babies make better for breeds.

Religions have attempted to deny our animal natures, thereby separating us from the ways of human "herds." In the process, they have created a culture of fear and shame that is infecting our attachment to proper stewardship of all things on earth. We have not become immune to our animal instincts, no matter how many punishments have been inflicted on us to attempt it. Unfortunately, we also haven't been taught the value of accepting them and channeling them into greater responsibility and compassion.

Our religions have fostered fear of anything that we can't explain, and anger toward what we can't control. They have separated the yin and the yang of nature into opposing forces, rather than embracing a harmonious whole. We are creating new life without the cooperation of the male and female energies that are so important for balance in the universe.

It is time that we realize that much of technology is not fostering humanity; it is attempting to create life without souls. What was invented to give humanity more time to meditate has only led to more insistence on activity and attempts at "perfection". Contraception control was invented to give mother's bodies more time to heal and the children more time to be held. It has helped lead to less sons being slaughtered in war and incarcerated. All good animal husbandry includes responsible fertilization by people who have information and free will. When will religions realize that we are not sheep, but human beings with minds, mates, and communities that are more important than any religion?

Saturday, March 23, 2013

Sharing Our Secrets

FRIDAY, MARCH 22, 2013

Hearing the Voice of God - by Gayle Nolan

 We can have confidence in what we are experiencing because it has already been revealed in Scripture. ( -- from yesterday's entry)
I realize that there is some kind of glitch in blogspot that prevents people from responding to the blogs.  Up until very recently, I have not been able to respond to people who responded, because I was told that I did not 'have access to this site.'  But the last time I tried, a couple of months ago, I was successful in posting a response.  I know 'they,' whoever 'they' are, have been working to improve blogspot.
So today, I am going to pose a question for reflection.  Whoever wants to respond may do so:
How does the Spirit of God speak to you?
When do you tend to 'hear' Him?
How does He guide you?
This is the same question posed three different ways, so anyone is free to answer just one or all three. I wish there were a way to have answers posted as part of the blog itself instead of just as a response, but we'll see how this works.  If anyone wants to reflect in the e-mail format, I'll cut and paste the responses tomorrow.             

From Y:
From my point of view, these are questions worth answering. I felt free to call the spirit that infiltrates my being when I'm not "thinking" The Sacred Spirit. I don't think Gayle will take offense if you don't call your inner voice "God." Sometimes my voice sounds like my son or daughter, sometimes like my daddy, sometimes like Gayle, sometimes like the halyards on the sailboats in the harbor, sometimes like the seagulls, etc...

Friday, March 22, 2013

Are All Anointed?

If "Christianity" is to be true, we must go back to the beginning,
Before Jesus was seen as the only way to cure sinning.
The Christ is an anointed one in religion, it is true;
In the history of the universe, could there be more than a few?

The early "Christians" were not angry competing crusaders,
But, through violence, they were overshadowed by invaders.
Fear of physical death has led to much false religion;
Martyrdom for a cause is not an easy decision.

It is especially difficult to see our babies tortured and slain,
When we're afraid that only the angry and hate-filled will remain.
How many have been anointed to show us a way to peace?
In recent generations, this passion seems to have increased.

Moses was an anointed leader who put down his sword,
Uniting his people with only the power of the word.
Jesus showed the Jews that salvation wasn't through blood;
It was a choice to follow in a path of peace and good.

The apostles decided that gentiles could be tamed
If only they would bow to their savior's holy name.
But the true "Christians" were converting by simply being,
So others would want the joy that they were seeing.

But "Christianity" bowed to Constantine to move forward;
It became not about acts and about the creed's words.
The message Jewish Jesus lived by was not new;
The Sacred Spirit has existed since the first winds blew.

The Sacred Spirit leads humanity to choose justice;
There is enough for all, if we only learn to trust this.
Buddha may have been an sacredly anointed one,
And Krishna may have been The Sacred Spirit's son.

Isn't it also true, from the Jewish perspective,
Acceptance of The Sacred Spirit is humanity's elective?
Was Gandhi an anointed one to lead a nation to peace?
And was MLK anointed to, our nation's unity, increase?

It is not about any one soul in any one generation;
It is about connecting all paths to the unity of nations.
Only joyful community living of compassionate purpose
Will take the place of violently competing discourse.

Only when religions go back to paths of peace on earth
Will humans honor the reason for which we're given birth.
Animals live in fear of losing territory and of starvation;
Humans can choose to share strengths with all nations.

We continue to live contrary to what we say we believe
Because we, by those who lead by fear, have been deceived.
Look for The Sacred Spirit in each person's eyes
And you may find, beneath the anger, fear in disguise.

We have been shown that the power of unity in peace
Is a proven way for The Sacred Spirit to increase.
Silence those preaching future hell fire and damnation;
They have made hell on earth in all "Christian" nations.

The spirit of all the anointed ones lives on in humanity;
We can follow the light of any one that we can see.
The light of peace burns brighter than any explosion;
Only responsible compassionate living can stop its erosion.

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

False Faith

Corporations are, by their very natures corrupt entities. The purpose of a corporation is to create an entity that is free from any personal accountability. This is antithetical to the basis of a moral society. Morality (my definition being responsible compassion) is dependent on personal conscience and accountability.

Our society began to collapse as soon as we stopped dealing with individuals and started dealing with corporate entities through lawyers. The goal of civil law is not justice, it is competition for who can best another with the most clever argument or the most political or financial pull. Might makes right in our legal system, but it does not lead to peace on earth.

The same goes for our criminal justice system; it is about who can best use fear to its advantage. It honors token amounts of money and an eye-for-an-eye in the form of years of one's life, as restitution for wrongdoing. this is decided by juries of strangers, rather than by the victims and the perpetrators. There is no reconciliation in that, only revenge, which leaves those wronged and their perpetrators less than whole.

Every time those claiming sacred authority hide behind the courts, they are denying their own profession of faith. Every time a religion is threatened by not becoming the law of the land, the religion is weakening the basis for belief. The true test of faith, in my opinion, is the ability to hold to one's beliefs without the protection of the legal system or consensus by one's neighbors.

Each family unit is a legal entity, a domestic corporation, if you will. It matters not how the family is constituted. Those living in a halfway house are, for that period of time, functionally a family. They share certain rules and responsibilities. Marriage has been robbed of the sacred by confusing it with domestic partnerships and allowing clergy to perform the legally binding contracts as if they were sacred bonds.

My marriage is a corporation of two adult entities, responsible individually and jointly for all decisions that are made by either of us. There are some things that were exempted before our legal contract of marriage by a legal pre-nuptial agreement, as Louisiana is a community property state. I insisted on this document to protect my husband's assets from members of my family.

We were married by a member of the clergy who knew nothing of either of us personally. This was allowed in both the state and the church. Most of the attendees were professed Christians, many of whom took some responsibility for helping us in our marriage journey. This time, I was blessed that the man I married was a truly moral man. This was not luck, or Divine intervention in the usually accepted sense. I had exposed our relationship to those with whom we had each shared The Sacred Spirit throughout our lives. This community embraced us as a couple, as they had embraced each of us individually. The commitment he made to me and to my community was a commitment of The Sacred Spirit that had been passed down from his parents, friends, and his religious upbringing.

We did marry each other for better and for worse, and both ends of the spectrum create their own sets of challenges to our commitment. Too many people don't realize that responsible compassion requires that we attempt always to offer our best, while knowing that we will often fall short. Too many people honor the letter of the law of marriage without ever having committed to The Sacred Spirit of a true marriage, not simply a domestic corporation.

Whoever said, "Love means never having to say you're sorry," was clearly not in a Sacred union. Forgiveness begins where willingness to ask for forgiveness begins. In corporations, and other areas of the legal system, admission of guilt and offering of restitution in the form of changed behavior is anathema. Long before the legal contracts, we had committed to each other, bodies and souls. Our joined souls are our sanctuary, and our home is our tabernacle for service to others, which the synergy of our marriage creates.

All of this in spite of sickness and health, in-laws, and stinky feet. We often have to say we're sorry to each other and to others. I am happy when given the opportunity to do so, as it means that the other continues to want a relationship with me.

Any religion that is married to a legal corporation is not acting in good faith; therefore, I believe it to be a false faith.  Religions, are you listening?

Matthew 6:2: "Therefore when thou doest thine alms, do not sound a trumpet before thee, as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and in the streets, that they may have glory of men."

Matthew 6:5: "And when thou prayest, thou shalt not be as the hypocrites are: for they love to pray standing in the synagogues and in the corners of the streets, that they may be seen of men."

Matthew 6:16: "Moreover when ye fast, be not, as the hypocrites, of a sad countenance ..."

Matthew 7:5: "Thou hypocrite, first cast out the beam out of thine own eye; and then shalt thou see clearly to cast out the mote out of thy brother's eye. "

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

A Home of Holy Communion

It is a great insult and proof of the lack of understanding of family life for the Roman Catholic Church to call itself Holy Mother Church and the men who have probably never changed a baby's diaper our "fathers."  There is no mother on earth who can properly care for a "litter" of infants. In order to bring up a fully human individual being, one must have the time and resources to attend to each child personally, learning how to communicate through focused compassion.

Families are not armies, who should be scared into following a strict set of rules or suffer eternal expulsion. Families are breeding and training grounds for individuals to learn to work within respectful, cooperative, complimentary teams. The fallacy that the church should supersede the boundaries set by the individual family denies the sanctity of the first "religion," that of husband and wife.

The fact that so many "Christians" have been brought into the fold of "faith" as "soldiers of Christ" says all we need to know about the falsity of this pseudo-faith masquerading as "Christianity." If Jesus is The Christ, then there is no such thing as a "soldier" to bring about the conversion of others to his way. There is a set of guidelines laid down in the ten commandments for creating sacred family and community that was simplified to two commandments by this man that most religions, even today, consider holy.

Jesus was very emphatic that the concentration on only "God' without human compassion is immoral. Jesus spoke lovingly of the animals of the earth, as he did of humans, and yet we allow disrespect toward both that leads to abuse. Man and woman hold dominion over the gifts of the earth, and we have allowed the greater physical strength of the male to scare us into submission to the them, especially as we make our bodies vulnerable to carry their seed into full humanity. We have even been frightened into allowing them to have us kneel to them as representatives of "God" on earth.

Jesus came forth from a woman's body and lived in a real marriage and community. The "Holy Mother Church" has made a mockery of the marriage by insisting that sex would somehow diminish the sacred in the seed that became Jesus. The church has shamed men for wanting to be held by their women, as the women long to be held by their men. Children's souls learn to love by being embraced in the sacred bonds of marriage. The church cannot be a substitute for these very physical ways of passing on The Sacred Spirit.

It is anathema to deny that the family is the basis of the church and not the other way around. My body was split open to bear the children of a man who had no respect for the sacred of sex or my motherhood because his "Christian" religion had made a mockery of physical family by denying the authority of woman in the marriage of male and female. A mother was to be looked upon as separate from her sexual self. The father of my children was "married" to his mother and I was the breeder of their babies.

Our children were baptized in the waters of my womb that held the love of their father and mother for them  before they were even born. Their lives are the reconciliation of the spirits of their father and mother. Every day that we are in loving relationship is confirmation of our sacred bond to The Sacred Spirit that we share. When I am ill, the only anointing I want is the loving touch of those who share The Sacred Spirit of my life with me. Holy Orders are any acts of compassion for the earth and others to which we are led.

My mother was a breeder of "soldiers of Christ," having nine children for the effort, only two of which she had the strength to care for. Against the wishes of her husband and family, and against the advice of her physician, she was counselled by her priests to understand that "God," in the form of the church, would care for her children. My father submitted to his wife and the church, against his own better judgement. Why is there not a commandment to honor one's children's father and mother?

The young boys who were made priests before they were out of puberty had been taught that the church came before the family, and that they had the wisdom to lead the faithful in areas that they had no way to understand. The faithful accepted that these same young men had the ability to permanently deny reentry into the eternal family with a wave of a "wand" in a confessional.

The holy communion that I practice happens right at the dinner table where the efforts of  my husband's brain,  the sweat of the farmer's and grocer's brows, and my loving preparation to honor their efforts feed the bodies that house The Sacred Spirit, that makes a holy place of my home. And when my husband and I, who are long past child-bearing age touch each other, whether sexually or in simple friendship, we are filling each others spirits with the energy that we then impart to others. This multiplying of The Sacred Spirit through our connection is the sacrament of marriage in our home. This marriage enables us to continue going forth and being fruitful so others may magnify and share our love.

In my opinion, every home should be a place of celebration of The Sacred Spirit, where respect for ourselves and others is the religion and the only rule.

Monday, March 18, 2013

Home as Safe Harbor

If today, I can be of service to one person's life in filling a human need,
If today I can lighten the soul of just one, have I paid for the air that I breathe?
Many lives are lived in tiny steps, not in grand gestures and accomplishments;
Keeping positive air under others' sails is sometimes why we are sent.

There are so many who refuse to celebrate, choosing fear instead;
Faith is not the same as fear of the punishments that we dread.
Faith is absolute assurance that we'll never stand on our own
Without loving hearts, hands, and souls beaconing us home.

The greatest gift I was given from grandchildren to grandmother
Was their belief that I'd step in if they lost father and mother.
From the strong bonding to my children and to their young,
This absolute trust in my continued care had naturally sprung.

My husband and I created a home where we honored every spirit;
When defeatist thoughts were proposed, we didn't want to hear it.
We believed in building competent empowerment of each;
It continues to be our joy that we were allowed to, these souls, teach.

We've spent our lives attempting to protect childhood innocence;
Once innocence is destroyed, there can be no recompense.
We see the dangers outside our homes and hold them at bay
This is the only method by which The Sacred Spirit will stay.

We do not judge the right or wrong of what others do,
But we insist, in our homes, on values we hold as true.
Each person has a place in his or her own journey;
We provide a place where, our values, others can see.

I miss the days of little feet and innocent children's laughter;
Circumstances beyond our control, this life shattered.
I hope that we made some positive difference in the universe
Before our attempts at sharing our fortunes were reversed.

We had no children of our loins and love, but we were parents
To every child that, for any amount of time, we were sent.
We have lost touch with most of these, the children of our souls,
But their innocence that blessed our lives continues to make us whole.

Sunday, March 17, 2013

The Sacred Spirit and Jewish Jesus

What if the bible is actually an analogy of the faith journey of all of humanity? What if different segments of humanity come to spiritual maturity at different times and places in the universe, and each person in each generation has to live out their destiny with an eye on becoming more spiritual with each succeeding generation? What if we stopped focusing on exclusion and began to focus on inclusion, with the goal being a return to a wholeness of The Sacred Spirit through universal unity?

What if, as cosmologists say, all matter in the universe, including humans is made up of star dust, which originated with one source of energy. What if, at the end of the earth, all The Sacred Spirits are all bound in one glowing ball of Eternal energy? Do you want to be part of the dark black holes that destroy energy or part of Eternal light?

It seems to me that Jesus was very clear on his feelings about all the competition for "God's" favorites, and the apostles voted to include gentiles in their mission of spreading the quest for unity of spirit. How did worldly religions manage to hijack The Sacred Spirit and invent rules for belonging to The Scared Spirit's tribe that even rejected the original leaders on the paths back to perfect peace?

Will humans ever fully grow up instead of beginning again and again rather than studying the elders before plowing ahead; or are we eternally doomed to be two year olds and teens who will always refuse guidance until we have self-destructed. Don't tell me what to do; simply give me the resources without any instructions or restrictions. Oh, but always be waiting in the wings to rescue me.

The real problem with our culture, as I see it, is competition for more than what we can ever enjoy and certainly don't need. Having spent four years with evil being explained to me in great detail, I know that I was much happier when I had less knowledge from the tree of good and evil. I also have more peace, the less I own and am responsible to keep alive.

I am so grateful for the great variety of skills that are employed to provide peace and prosperity in our ever- shrinking physical lives. The skills of others free up all the time I could possibly want to learn of the wonders of the universe, contemplate their places in the grand schemes of creation, and share love with the people most important to me.

Many mistake my positive passion for naivete or lack of intelligence. Suffice it to say that nothing could be farther from a description of what my life has exposed my poor brain and spirit to. I could say that I'm happy to be alive, but more accurately, I'm grateful that I've had the opportunity to do my best to make a positive difference in at least one life while I've lived. I hope that, when I die, I will have left a legacy of a universe a tiny bit better because I lived in it.

I think this way because I stopped looking backward to ancient religious beliefs at a very early age, and have stayed focused on only The Sacred Spirit as perfectly exemplified by Jewish Jesus and his Jewish family with their many generations of growth in spirituality. I want to be part of The Eternal Light of The Sacred Spirit.

Friday, March 15, 2013

Seeing The Sacred Spirit

Let's say The Sacred Spirit is the energy of "God" with many manifestations. I awoke this morning at the home of one of my best friends; some of the greatest manifestations of The Sacred Spirit in my life being loving friends and family. She shared with me that she was spending the day walking with another friend enjoying the teeming life in the French Quarter. Sounds like a sacred way to spend a day to me.

Even though I looked forward to sharing some sacred time with my neighbor, practicing her English pronunciations, she was emotionally under the weather. When her husband called to communicate her situation, he and I had the opportunity to share our joy in my friendship with his wife. There is nothing that manifests The Sacred Spirit more than shared community.

The Sacred Spirit is bonding my daughter with me from five hundred miles away, as she sits on her backyard deck grading students' writing assignments. She must be enjoying the same weather as we are. She couldn't bear to contain her joy, so she posted the perfection of her evening's manifestation of the glory of The Sacred Spirit on her facebook page.

This evening, The Sacred Spirit on the water looks bright and sunny with gentle ripples instead of waves. The way I see The Sacred Spirit in this evening's sky is as a bright cloudless blue The seabirds are soaring with The Sacred Spirit's breezes under their wings, preparing for their safe, sacred, warm nighttime roosts.

There was a sunbather by the pool soaking up The Sacred Spirit's manifestation as sunlight, so welcome in the last days of winter. And the workman who had been sharing The Scared Spirit in his repair work headed off to, hopefully, an evening filled with The Sacred Spirit of a loving family and home. And my sacred husband returned home to me from his day of volunteer work, happy to have shared his manifestations of The Sacred Spirit.

Sacred water, sacred waves, sacred sea;
All of this glory, all of ours for free.
Sacred men and women serving others,
Sacred Spiritual sisters and brothers.

All I see in all of balanced creation
Is The Sacred Spirit's manifestations.
I know others see God as only a man;
This I've never been able to understand.

The negation of The Sacred Spirit is easy
When we limit the manifestations we see.
If we recognize The Sacred Spirit in all things
We'll look for it in all that life brings.

When I slow down and take the time
To know that what I need is already mine.
I love to share my sacred visions with others,
As children do with their fathers and mothers.

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Is Unexamined Belief Worth Believing?

Today on facebook, a young woman that I've loved since her conception posted this quote from Harry Potter“This boy will be famous. There won’t be a child in our world who doesn't know his name.” – Professor McGonagall. This young woman is a dedicated, devout, practicing Christian who has read the complete Harry Potter series over and over again. In seeing this post, I asked myself whether she had gotten the same messages from the Harry Potter series that I had gotten, a restating of a message of scripture in a world to which adults and teenagers can relate in modern times.

This may only be that I find scriptural connections in every book I read and conversation I have, always attempting to find some new avenue to universal truth. I can even talk about a recipe and find some biblical message to paraphrase. This often makes people very nervous, as if I'm attempting to ridicule their biblical "beliefs." But are unexamined interpretations by others really beliefs, or are they simply words that have been memorized? 

I know many women who have spent their lives studying the bible, and yet few of them reveal their interpretations of their studies. I have asked many to do so, and have usually been told, "My faith is a private affair, between me and god." I have attended bible studies led by clergy, and invariably, the group defers in their opinions to the "expert." Perhaps the only way to become familiar with what others glean from their reading is to have bible studies operate more like book reports, where the books are read in private and reported on in papers independently written by the readers. 

For this reason, I enjoy the blog by dear friend Gayle Nolan, in which Gayle relates her everyday life to scriptures stamped on her heart. I also enjoy several blogs posted on, which hosts conversations on faith from every angle imaginable to my mind. What better way to open our souls to universal truth than by hearing The Sacred Spirit as heard by all ages in all religious traditions on earth?

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Preparing for Peace

What if we all started creating peace while we're on earth?
Is it possible we could replace fear and hate with mirth?
What if we believed that any energy we pass along
Will return and remain with us in our eternal life's song?

Would we then spend our time singing of the good,
Trying to, in all we meet, create brotherhood?
Would we continue to fill our souls with greed,
Or would we help to fill each other's needs?

If we knew thought that salvation belongs to all or none,
Would we continue to, all who are different, shun?
Or would we, with joy, open wide our arms,
And celebrate The Sacred Spirit, in all its forms?

Those who share the negative and then seek more,
Seem to be those who, the thought of death, most abhor.
Perhaps if they sought and shared celebrations daily,
They wouldn't, their own last breaths, find so scary.

Singing songs of gratitude for all that crosses our paths
Is the only way The Sacred Spirit grows and lasts.
What we allow to feed our souls and others while we breathe
May be the seeds of eternity that we ourselves conceived.

When we destroy the peace in another, we destroy some sacred;
It is our own souls that we are eternally stripping naked.
Fear, instead of friendships, is how many protect their souls.
What if each part of the universe is eternally part of the whole?

If we believed this, would we, with each day, begin
Attempting to welcome new people and ideas in?
Or would we continue to diminish our own energy,
The energy we will pass into universal eternity?

Monday, March 11, 2013

Feed 'em Fish

For the first time in the almost six decades in which I've known him, I heard him speak of god. We were there to help prepare a sampling of the freezer full of fish that he had bought from a door-to-door salesman. His daughter, a best friend since I was six, isn't familiar with cooking of fish, and was very concerned about the prices he had paid for food with which she isn't familiar. On the menu were fried shrimp, shrimp remoulade salad, grilled tilapia with langostino sauce, and lyonnaise potatoes.

I had carefully orchestrated that Richard would be in the kitchen with the gals to save him from the octogenarian's constant comments on armaggedon and other cheerful subjects of the sort. Seeing as he loves conversing with any man who happens by, and loves to ask Richard's opinions on all the pseudo-science that he is exposed to, this ended with our friend's father sitting in the kitchen, talking to Richard's back.

Richard's voice is so soft, he says it doesn't carry any farther than his own nose; the octogenarian is rather hard of hearing. This, as usual, led to my repetition of all Richard's comments, which invariably leads to much ridicule of me. It seems like any words that come from the lips of a woman, even if the woman is repeating, verbatim, what a man has said, somehow poisons the words.

I can often best verbal opponents, if not with erudition, with rapier wit; this is a gift I got from my father and regularly practice with my beloved Richard. Both of these men are, or were, sarcastically gifted scientists. Unlike Richard, my father had no boundaries on his snark. I try to keep mine from doing harm.

Our aged friend and I sparred for an hour or so while he intermittently admitted that he and his caretaker daughter were getting a good deal in our volunteer labors to fix their food. I reminded him that I am a food-service professional and that Richard was serving as my staff. At this point, he offered to assist with preparation by peeling shrimp. Perhaps he only felt like the work was valuable if he could be on a team that included a man.

As these things do, kitchen conversation while engaged in feeding of family, turned to talk of family values. I almost fainted when this avowed non-religious man admitted that he thought that god was in each of us. This led to a discussion of heaven and hell and eternal energy. I always knew that Jesus had a good reason for feeding people while he talked to them.

We didn't have any loaves to serve with the fish, but our friend requested that I prepare a second batch of fish before we went home.

Saturday, March 9, 2013

Nice Neighbors

My second "son" arrived after work yesterday;
This time I asked that while I cook, he'd stay.
Richard had purchased new technology
For watching his favorites on TV.
I knew I was in for a tense night,
If Richard was left alone with this fight.

He wants to navigate technology,
But this a gift from which he's free.
I had made a deal with my second "son,"
We'd, for technology help, to him run.
In exchange, I will cook meals for him;
I don't know that we'll ever be real friends.

A student on one side, a "son" on the other,
I'm feeling again like a den mother.
I'm determined to make this equal exchange,
But, for me, this is a big change.
If friendship grows, it's baggage free,
With no primary responsibility.

This may only be the way of neighbors,
With the giving and the taking of favors.
I don't need any more kids or friends,
But a good neighbor can be a godsend.
Small crises can be, by neighbors, greeted,
A cup of sugar or band-aid is needed.

If we have a mission that is true,
We should focus on what we can do.
It is important to check ourselves
Before opening wide to someone else.
Neighbors quite often move away,
True family and friends, in the soul, stay.

Friday, March 8, 2013

The Sacred Spirit at Death

When I was afraid of losing you, I became greedy for your spirit,
And that your gentle voice, I'd never again be able to hear it.
I wanted to soak up enough of you that I wouldn't feel the pain
When your sight, sound, touch was taken away from me again.

I spent years shunning new friendships because I was drained,
Worrying that the depths of my emotions couldn't be restrained.
I prayed for death so that the terrible anxiety would finally cease;
There were no relationships that could bring me lasting peace.

Over the years of your renewed health, it became plain to see
That so much of your Sacred Spirit will always live on in me,
That I no longer feel anxious that I will lose your presence
My heavenly communion with you lives in our present tense.

I believe The Eternal Sacred Spirit that lives in us
Opened up in me the thoughts of death issues to discuss.
I have come to see The Sacred Spirit of life as a continuum
We don't know, at our physical deaths, what new life it becomes.

I believe that, with fear, Sacred Spiritual Energy is snuffed;
Fear becomes anger and hatred in those who have been rebuffed.
When we're led by fear of the unknown, instead of embracing it,
We create an environment where only a few spirits can fit.

When my physical spirit begins to wane and create negative energy,
I hope that only my Sacred Spirit lives on in those who've loved me.
If I, in any way, have caused another's Sacred Spirit to be diminished,
I hope that, with my death, their Sacred Spirit is replenished.

I wish we had a dying farewell ritual of final forgiveness,
Where, we with our loved ones, and possibly a loving witness,
Could come together and confess our sins against each other,
Husband to wife, neighbor to neighbor, and sister to brother.

We have been to taught to eternally hide our sins in shame,
Fearing the eternal punishment taught in "God's" name.
The ones who are punished when we deny our sins
Are the new lives that, with those we touched, begins.

Even in war, would it be healing for combatants to apologize
To the dying father of a family, before he closes his eyes?
Fear turned into anger and hatred kills a part of the soul;
The passing of pieces to another may, once again, make it whole.

We must begin to see death as only our breathing will cease,
The Sacred Spirit passed into the breath of another, may increase.
Will we ever, with peaceful, loving arms hold each other while we die,
And wash away all our sins against each other as we, together, cry?

Thursday, March 7, 2013

Pronunciation and Peace

I'm supposed to be helping my neighbor learn to pronounce English;
For universal pronunciations of any language, we can only wish.
I have a workbook of everyday polite, conversations that are boring,
But our sharing of bawdy stories has sent her understanding soaring.

We both share grandma wisdom, in which our lives are full.
We laugh as much as we converse; earthy stories are universal.
She took English at several churches and was usually quite bored;
Apparently they didn't know how new memories are truly stored.

When I tutored a child of seven, my teacher-daughter said to me,
"Teach this child familiar words that he can plainly see."
This second-grade child resonated to his own family's names;
So, for my new student, I'm doing the adult version of the same.

She came over full of sadness and worry for her country;
The president had died, leaving her people leader free.
I spent the first half hour commiserating in her pain;
By the time she went home, she was laughing again.

She's a respected doctor of law in her homeland;
Here, only her husband, can she talk to as a friend.
Though she is younger than I am by thirteen years,
Naughty Catholic girl stories bring us both to tears.

She talks of her many experiences in her international world;
During these rowdy exercises, her English sentences unfurl.
We are now at the point where I want her to teach dancing
To my friends who will, her culture, enjoy understanding.

Multicultural communication can be accomplished in ways
That, through universal language of laughter, has all of us engaged.
Is there any one of us without a old naughty relation's stories
That will cross over any race, religion, or language boundaries?

Dance, sing, laugh, cry, touch; there is always a way
To get across, with emotion, what we really want to say.
And, if we are willing to be mutually vulnerable,
We'll create a world that is, in peace on earth, full.

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Fight to Make It Right

Things we can't talk about are things "polite" society rejects;
This is the reason we have been forbidden to speak of sex.
But in all the history of the animal kingdom, including humans,
Sex has been the strongest force in The Sacred Spirit's plans.

What a travesty of The Spirit's source to deny spiritual sex
By taking the power of the physical out of the sacred's context.
By being taught to be ashamed and afraid of our animal natures,
We have become less noble than other living creatures.

We were given free will in order to make responsible decisions,
But the religious leaders have treated individuals with derision.
Couples were robbed of authority in defining limits of their broods
Based on what, for their union, were considered, by them, good.

There should be no more sacred bonds upon the earth
Than the unions of man and woman in order to give birth.
Because our religions have long-since become civil institutions,
They have perverted the privileges of family solutions.

The house divided against itself has always been doomed to fail,
Like that of religion and government, against which we should rail.
Domestic partnerships, designed only to protect property,
Should never have been accepted as sacred marital unity.

The churches wielded such influence over government,
We forgot the reasons for our ancestors commitment.
We must insist on actual division of state and church motives;
One seeks to take and the other is created to give.

Religions set parameters on behaviors they will support;
The "charity" of government is evil's power resort.
Religious charity is a system of personal accountability,
From which our country's enforced giving is free.

In days of old, charity was the responsibility of community,
Not something handed out with complete anonymity.
When a small group knows and vouches for an individual
The whole community, on the recipient's action, has some pull.

We must stop funding individual "charity" with anonymous taxes;
With this system in place, all justice and conscience relaxes.
Even Jesus, our guiding Jew, said, between Caesar and our religions,
We should always recognize distinctly moral divisions.

Did he not preach limits to the amounts workers should give
To the poor and downtrodden to help them to live?
He did not say, "Plant, harvest, and cook it for them."
This, in truth, takes away the dignity of the human.

And when he died upon the cross, as an innocent human,
He didn't take off their crosses those who'd sinned against man.
He recognized that there were two steps to true repentance
The first was to satisfy the human wrong, in the present tense.

Their are so many who want to deny responsibility to humans
As part of our inclusion in The Sacred Spirit's redemption plan.
Only those who accept The Sacred Spirit and live accordingly
Can recognize and honor all  life's appointed sacred dignity.

Their are laws deemed by humanity seeking earthly peace;
These have been instruments for some worldly wars to cease.
If warring nations agree to honor cease fires and truces,
Don't we see that humanity, to pawns in games, this reduces?

I, as a mother, put my body and my soul at great risk
So that my husband's spirit and mine could, in new life, exist.
There is no power on earth that could make me send my son
To save the greedy values that my nation and religion have become.

Neither sex nor war should be inflicted on the innocent,
But this is how the energies of the supremely powerful are spent.
Domination is the game for which they set the rules;
All creation is simply treated as their power game tools.

In my lifetime, there has never been a war to protect our land;
The definition of "just war" has been in corporations' hands.
I will not only not send my sons, daughters, and granddaughters;
I will also fight to defend any innocent person's slaughter.

Until the leaders of our nation are prepared to be just and brave,
Instead of living by the rules of power that protect the depraved,
I will continue to promote the destruction of their power bases,
Hoping that their fall, eventually, corporate power erases.

I have very little hope that, in my lifetime, religions will lose power
Or that our less-privileged will, at their commands, fail to cower,
But, my great hope for the future of all humanity
Is that the generations coming after us are Divine Right of Kings free.

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Neighbors, Friends, "Family"

What fun I had yesterday; our next-door neighbors dropped in.
One came to practice her English; she has become a friend.
She came in to learn; we began with coffee and a few laughs
About something that, in the day before's lesson, had come to pass.

She had been sharing a recipe that she called "blasted potatoes;"
I struggled with her over pronunciation, but this is what she chose.
She finally, in frustration, spelled the words on a pad for me,
Hoping I would understand if only I could hear and see.

In the dead of night after this lesson, I woke up with a start;
Her words, during my sleep, had taken themselves apart.
Because she had explained the recipe's preparation process,
My subconscious realized what her procedure suggests.

"She was saying basted!" my subconscious screamed.
Perhaps this came together in something I'd just dreamed.
"You were saying basted," I sang out, and we celebrated.
The tiny victories in communication can't be overrated.

Then my most pious Jewish friends came for lunch.
We had pork and potatoes; they're not an orthodox bunch.
I always love our meetings; we discuss much theology;
Our talks are about our shared Judeo-Christian history.

Our religions' foolish territorial natures cause our laughter,
But we know, among others, these religions cause disaster.
Would that all with differences could be fascinated by others,
And honor each other's ways, like sisters and brothers.

When these friends had taken their leave, with much hesitation,
I thought I was finished with that day's community relations.
My student and her husband dropped by to consult with Richard,
Concerning a family medical problem about which they'd just heard.

They left after a nice visit; surely it was time for our privacy.
Here came our other next-door neighbor, with a request of me.
A three-time veteran of Iraq, and college student who can't cook;
He had a stir-fry kit that he brought over for me to take a look.

I had offered to be his pretend mom and cook for him
If he would be willing to be Richard's techno-savvy friend.
Neighbors, friends, "family" -- what better way to spend the day?
These are the blessings of life for which I always did pray.

Monday, March 4, 2013

Shared Spirit

There's a video going around the internet of a father "giving away" his daughter. As is common for my reactions to things, what makes many smile sweetly, puts my teeth on edge. The daughter in the video is a nurse who has traveled the world with the missions. She is obviously fully adult, and her obviously southern, bible-belt believing father is "giving his girl away" to her husband. "How sweet," many say. "How sad," I say,  because we have not moved on from this archaic scripture-sanctioned salute to slavery.

As our children are growing, it is wonderful to begin forming friendships with them as they come of adult age. This is a tentative task, at first, as boundaries must continually be reevaluated and moved closer and closer to equal status. When our children are grown, what I pray for is inclusion in the partnerships that they form in their adult lives. It is barbaric, in my opinion, to continue acting as if our daughters are chattel to be owned and traded.

In functional families, the older parents should make themselves available to assist and guide the less experienced family, at the request of the younger couple. In this way, community is expanded; there is no joking about "Now she's your problem," when the couple is wed. There is no "gaining a daughter" or "losing a son" involved. There is simply growth of sacred community.

It is not easy to accept that our children will make their own decisions, without our input being their primary guide. Healthy marriage partners focus on the values that they share to create a new nucleus of family. It is also not easy to sit on the sidelines, with our hearts ever open to a call from our closest community members. The most difficult part for me has been in areas where my values and those of the new couples don't agree. All I can do is state my boundaries and refuse to take part in any activity that too severely challenges my boundaries.

It is our duty as community members, in any form of friendship, to refuse to participate in destruction of our own values. It is sad that often protection of our boundaries means ejection from the communities closest to us. It is the nature of life that all physical things, including friends, come to a physical ending, but a great consolation to know that spirit shared lives on in us forever.

Sunday, March 3, 2013

Lively Lessons

Preaching is not what converts a soul;
It's practice with guidance that makes us whole.
When we bond with another, child or man,
Only then can we help them understand.

Why is "no" an adult's favorite word?
We're correcting before the child is heard.
The color-blind child sees a brown tree;
Is he wrong when green is what I see?

Who put certain colors in our heads
Where the color-blind child dreads
Any attempts at coloring or art,
And eventually thinks he's not smart?

What of penmanship class to show
Writing styles that went out long ago?
If we want the child to communicate
Don't use it for chances to, him, berate.

It takes much time to form a thought;
Many children feel overwrought
When faced with impatient adults,
Who, then, their intellects insult.

The days of shoving children into a mold
Should have gone out in days of old.
By labeling everything unique a disease,
It is only the despots that are pleased.

We all may learn through what we hear,
But putting in practice makes lessons clear.
While some learn by what they see,
Others learn with kinetic energy.

We are given five senses for learning
Why to only two do we keep returning?
The more of them that teachers utilize
The less our children are minimized.

America is meant to be multi-cultural;
Only Anglo culture is nurtured in schools.
Sitting down for hours and listening
Is not the way that all children can win.

What others say turning what we can do,
Seems to apply to only a few.
If someone stands beside a child while learning
The lessons taught, may continue burning.

Everything we do with a child's rhythm
Is a way to impart our values to him
If we fit ourselves into a child's mold
It seems that we may never feel old.

Tasks that work a child's growing limbs
Make their lessons parts of them.
Here's a new and quite radical notion:
Let's have all our lessons while in motion.

Saturday, March 2, 2013

Sacred Smiles

The Sacred Spirit = faces and other manifestations of God = Infinite Universal Energy = The Infinite "I Am." = Sacred in humanity = Sacred Spirit of Jesus and all who lead us back to our sacred origins with their own lives. Upon their physical deaths, The Sacred Spirit that was manifest in them, some in greater measures than others, is left to inhabit the earth.

Is this also the sound "Om" which is believed by some to be the sound of the Infinite Universal Energy? How can Infinite Universal Energy have only one name, one "face," one manifestation, and one path for faith? How can there have only been one book of The Sacred Spirit ever recorded?

All of creation may be The Sacred Spirit enclosed in physical manifestations. Some manifestations are in human form, some of these forms with more Sacred Spirit than others. We may be helpless in choosing how much of The Sacred Spirit inhabits our bodies at birth, but all adults with normal judgement can control how and with whom they connect. The choices we make either grow or diminish The Sacred Spirit in us and The Sacred Spirit in those around us. Sometimes all it takes is a sacred smile to light the lamp of The Sacred Spirit in a soul.

Friday, March 1, 2013

Receiving Re-Birth

I've sat in the presence of many a friend,
Wishing that my scarred life would end.
They lent me their ears and their joy,
That I passed on to my girl and boy.

My children are grown; there are none
Who now need what I've become.
It is up to me to take my own reins,
And find the path that's been ordained.

Perhaps finding it is not to be;
Maybe it will freely find me.
Until then, I write of the everyday;
This is how I'm led to pray.

I see other's lives and am inspired,
By the energy with which they're fired.
As an observer, I like to spread
The joy by which others are led.

It's a fact of life that, as we age,
We must learn to step off-stage.
It is enough for me to observe others
Practicing being good sisters and brothers.

And the friends who are parts of my soul
Continue on in making me whole.
I live in gratitude for their presents
Of sharing with me their very essence.

My Sacred Spirit has many faces
That neither time nor distance erases.
Everyone who ever truly loved me
Remains a part of my spirit in eternity.

It is sad that also the great pain
Comes to visit again and again,
Not only my spirit, but the earth.
I pray that our chaos results in re-birth.