"I plead with you, for the love of God, do not give up on your prayer. Start over again every day. Do not look for consolations. Remember again and again that love begins when nothing is expected in return. You will have consolations enough when God wills it. Enjoy them when they are given, but do not look for them or become attached to them. Seek the giver, not the gifts."-- William A. Meninger The Loving Search for God
"For us let it be enough to know ourselves to be in the place where God wants us, and carry on our work, even though it be no more than the work of an ant, infinitesimally small, and with unforeseeable results."
-- Abbé Monchanin
Thursday, July 30, 2009
Wednesday, July 29, 2009
"A real Christian, as opposed to a cultural Christian, is not one who never sins. He or she is one who, having sinned, is willing to reach out and find his or her sufficiency in Christ and start over again--today!"--William A. Meninger The Loving Search for God
Tuesday, July 07, 2009
"Many years ago there lived a scholar who asked an old rabbi what could be learned from the Talmud. The rabbi told him of two men who fell down a chimney. One man arrived at the bottom dirty, while the other arrived clean. Is that the lesson of the Talmud? the scholar asked. No, replied the old rabbi, listen to me: the dirty man looked at the clean man and thought himself clean. Is that the lesson of the Talmud? asked the scholar. No, replied the rabbi, for the dirted man looked at his own hands and seeing them sooty knew he'd been dirted. This then is the lesson of the Talmud? said the scholar. No, said the rabbi. Then what am I to learn from the Talmud? asked the scholar. The rabbi told him: You will learn nothing from the Talmud if you start by believing that two men can fall down a chimney and not both be dirtied."
-- Len Deighton City of Gold
Sunday, July 05, 2009
"We were taught, as much by example as precept, to respect our minds and to use them; to examine the evidence before rushing in with our opinions; to distinguish between fact and theory; to see history through the eyes of the poor and vanquished, not merely those of the powerful and the conquerors; not to believe that something is true simply because it would be pleasant or convenient if it were and, when exposed to propaganda, to ask ourselves, 'In whose interest is it that I should believe this?'"
-- P. D. James Time To Be In Earnest
Unfortunately, this lesson has not been taught or learned by the majority of citizens of the U.S.A. today. We are too quick to voice opinions and too ready to view history through the eyes of the powerful and conquerors rather than consider the view from the eyes of the poor and vanquished. (This is a complete departure from the attitude of God revealed in the Bible and especially in Jesus. Ironic for a nation which so many claim to be a Christian Nation. Especially since those voicing the claim tend to be the ones least likely to empathize with the poor and vanquished.)
A good place to begin practicing to learn this lesson is the current health care debate. When confronted with the TV ads and proclamations of the politicians and lobbyists, let us ask ourselves, "In whose interest is it that I should believe this?" There is clearly a divide between those seeking to maximize profits and those seeking to maximize "life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness" of the citizens of this country.