Thursday, October 12, 2017
Monday, July 06, 2015
So part of the US anti muslim narrative is that the Qu’ran is a book full of hate that preaches jihad, war, intolerance, yada, yada. Another part says that Muslims are just barbaric like Christians were a few hundred years ago and they just need time to mature a bit. Muslim apologist say that radicals are a small part of the muslim world. Statistics say muslim extremist are less than 1% of all muslims. According to a 2010 study and released January 2011, Islam has 1.5 billion adherents, making up over 22% of the world population. If my math is correct, 15 million muslim fall in to the category radical or extremist, and therefore are potential terrorist. According to the Pew Research Center in 2015 there were 50 Muslim-majority countries.
In June of 2015 Pastor Rick Scarborough threaten to go up in flames if Gay marriage was rendered legal in the US.
He later, recanted his statement saying it was a metaphor from an old spiritual. He said, “I made that comment to paraphrase a spiritual song, Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego in which the three were given a choice—to bow to the image of Nebuchadnezzar or burn in a furnace,” said Scarborough.”‘We will burn’ means that we will accept any sanction from the government for resisting [Friday's] Supreme Court decision. We do not support any violence or physical harm.” Maybe some of you see an easy parallel but it is over my head, extremely premature at the very least. I guess he is anticipating a law that makes it illegal for churches against Gay marriage to opt out of performing them.
In a debate between ex British prime minister Tony Blair and atheist and journalist Christopher Hitchens, Hitchens argues, “Religion forces nice people to do unkind things, and also makes intelligent people say stupid things” your thoughts? Sadly, June 23 retired pastor Charles Moore sets himself on fire in protest of racism. The Tyler Morning Telegraph obtained a copy of the suicide note from Grand Saline police. In it, Moore lamented past racism in Grand Saline and beyond. He called on the community to repent and said he was “giving my body to be burned, with love in my heart” for those who were lynched in his hometown as well as for those who did the lynching, hoping to address lingering racism. “Giving my body to be burned with love in my heart,” is straight out of the new testament, 1 Corinthians 13 King James Version (KJV) 13.... 3 And though I bestow all my goods to feed the poor, and though I give my body to be burned, and have not charity, it profiteth me nothing. I doubt pastor Moore can be called a radical, fundamentalist Christian but I know little about him.
I’m more inclined to think that there was unfinished business in his life, sometime when, in his own mind, he should have acted and didn’t and it got to him. He could have been a religious person like he was or an atheist or agnostic and had the same end. Timothy McVeigh was raised Catholic but hadn’t practiced for a long time and at the time of his execution considered himself agnostic. http://www.rawstory.com/2015/06/texas-pastor-denies-plan-to-set-self-on-fire-if-gay-marriage-was-legalized-was-only-quoting-a-song/
Is Hitchens correct that religion makes good people do bad things? Does the good that comes out of religion, any religion, eclipse or even balance out the wrong doing? We’ve had the Inquisition, witch hunts, sex scandal cover up in the catholic church, the Ku Klux Klan, a religious organization vs., the Salvation Army, Abolitions, ecstatic, spiritual experiences in all religions and pissing matches: My God is the real thing, yours is fake and it says so right in the book. Is religion the culprit or the scapegoat? Less than one percent doesn’t sound too bad does it? If one percent of Islam is radical, fringe, and a potential hotbed of terrorism that is 16 million people. If one percent of Christianity worldwide is radical, fringe, and a potential hotbed of terrorism that is 22.3 million people.
The way it’s painted there is a line in the sand and never the twain shall meet, terrorist on one side and people who frown on terrorism on the other side. However after watching terrorism in the US just since the turn of the 20th century through today it seems to me there are a lot of terrorist sympathizers who systemically support terrorism against People of Color, our LGBT brothers and sisters, filling the gap between terrorists on one side of the line and their antithesis. They have posh jobs in the media. Six churches have been set on fire since Dylan Roof, I think they are terrorist attacks because of the number and the timing to the 9 South Carolina deaths and because they are black churches, but the media is showing an unusual amount of restraint calling this arson,: “The Southern Poverty Law Center's Hatewatch blog reports that as of Friday, "a string of nighttime fires have damaged or destroyed at least six predominately black churches in four southern states in the past week." Investigators have determined at least three of the fires were set by arsonists.” “ One Tweet Nails The Hypocrisy of Media Coverage as Black Churches Burn Across the South” http://mic.com/articles/121461/one-tweet-nails-the-silence-of-media-as-black-churches-burn-across-the-south
Sunday, March 01, 2015
These poor people in Mumbai and probably all over the world are mislead flocking to a statue of Jesus in Mumbai purportedly weeping. So often religion is at odds with truth and physical evidence. Pure and genuine religion in the sight of God means caring for orphans and widows in their distress and refusing to let the world corrupt you. Of course it doesn't mean just widows and orphans but at the time and in the place this was written these two groups held the most helpless of society; I doubt that it is much different in 2013.
All organizations be they churches, temples, mosques, social service agencies or governments are oganizations that work against the good of human kind out of human and organizational nature. The number one "instinct" of organizations (which I believe the U.S. and most of the world consider a legal person) and people is self preservation.
Once a church forms we must realize, the church it self must acknowledge that it puts its existence and comfort ahead of worshipping (upholding) the Life, the Way, the Truth. In keeping with this the church in Mumbai upon being proved wrong about the miracle weeping statue sued Sanal Edamaruku the bringer of bad tidings who had to flee the country to Finland to maintain his freedom. The church will drop the charges if Edamaruku apologizes.
Governments put self preservation ahead of the common good of the people en mass that they serve.
It is up to all individuals to see this and realize individuals do the same thing. Once we realize this we can balance it against our actions on behalf of others. Next step the more we realize that we are all one then we find ourselves being holistically healthy so as to benefit others. Then we will see that a huge part of our own self preservation, happiness and wholeness hinges on giving, loving and meeting the needs of others. We will see we have needs that others need to fill.
Thursday, December 04, 2014
Rear Admiral Grace M. Hopper,
USN, Ph.D. By James S. Davis
via Wikimedia Commons
By Cavana Faithwalker, Organizational, Community and Personal Empowerment Strategist, Facilitator
Saturday, June 28, 2014
Integrity and Mindfulness: A Father's Special Brew of Squirrel Pee Tea - I-Open
I hope you enjoy this piece I wrote for I-Open. Comments welcomed.
I hope you enjoy this piece I wrote for I-Open. Comments welcomed.
Friday, January 10, 2014
One of many struggles people deal with when considering the question, 'is there a god' is the question of pain. Pain can register from minor social irritants like the loud neighbors next door to homelessness, the ravages of death and disease.
Some people reason that all pain is necessary and has benefit. Pema Chodron, a Buddhist nun and teacher in the Shambhala tradition,in the Tibetan tradition, she says that in the vaJiana tradition of Buddhism your teacher becomes your biggest trouble maker. The idea is these irritants reveal chinks in the armor so to speak.
Pema Chodron "Troublemakers"
Does all pain have value if one knows how to leverage it? Do we value the human irritants in our lives or shun them? Part of a healthy meditation regimen is bringing your 'third eye' to bear on uncomfortableness in yourself. Do your experiences bare this out or not agree? What about pain inflicted by war or natural disasters, necessary and fruitful? To those of you that are perhaps Buddhist initiates or laymen forgive me for not talking about what Buddhism says and for making pain and suffering synonymous.*Your thoughts?*
Once in the early 80s when I managed a Howard Johnson restaurant in New Jersey, I had inherited a very good staff that got along with each other for the most part and were kind of on auto pilot.
At one point a young man interviewed to be a waiter. Spencer had big strawberry blond curly hair and had the biggest attitude I'd seen in a while. He was FLAMING gay, and a white boy, 'girlfren' neck jerk, two snaps up down hands on hip, 'I ain't the one' in your face individual,.
I think I hired him on the spot and others just knew at some point upper management would fire me for this.
Man, Spencer turned that restaurant upside down and inside out especially Peggy. Peggy was probably 60 years old, a career server, and a devout fundamentalist Christian, as was I. Well after this she didn't think I was, lol.
I should have had a badge for Spencer, 'I push buttons,' and another one, "my button stays pushed." I had to suggest to him time-outs, shut down cat fights, and constantly cool off Peggy and others too.
The other side of Spencer? Spencer was very professional on the floor, conscientious, and one of the most talented people person, food delivering waiters I've ever seen in the ten or so years I was in food service. He had a great sense of humor, used the word 'bitch' way too much, and seemed to accept others, and didn't hold a grudge. Spencer was an authentic person and I am so glad I hired him.
The culture of the staff improved, he was a great salesperson and other's sales went up. At first one or two _maybe_ because they weren't gonna let 'that fag' outsell them but mostly because of his example and egging them on. As time went on it was very hard to ignore Spencer's humanity... He bonded well and became part of the Hojo family and developed great working relationships and relationships outside work.
A poem from an irritant.
Thursday, January 31, 2013
Metabedu Incremental Change
Ways to change yourself, then your community and neighborhood, then the world.
|graffiti by Banksy|
A fundamental concept at Metabedu is changing things through the changes you make in yourself that leads you to action. When one is educated about where one can become empowered, one may choose to become empowered and then action and empowerment are one in the same.
Many times we belong to well meaning groups centered on change of some action such as fracking, on some issue, such as who gets taxed how much or some societal malady such as homelessness.
It is clear that in most examples, surely the ones mentioned previously there are identifiable reasons dis-eases exist and reasons they haven’t gone away. Many issues exist because many people allow them to exist. Some would say they are part of the problem if not part of the solution.
There are pages and pages of websites about changing and listening.
I would like to challenge you to listen to yourself, the inner being and make decisions toward change, some incremental some perhaps more radical.
What is it you don’t like that you participate in? What is it you like that you can reinforce?
I once caught myself tsk tsk tsking the grounds around a local middle school as I entered. I made the decision I could be part of the solution and now I pick up a piece of trash or two when entering places; just a piece or two and not every time.
Incremental change is not completed in a vacuum ever. We may not see the ripple but there is a ripple internally and many times if not always externally.
A few days later at the same school I saw a child’s glove on the ground. I know my daughter’s mom and I work hard to provide for her and to replace one glove is to replace two. One more pair of gloves goes into production then and all of the resources in making, distributing and marketing those gloves. I got out of my car, picked up the glove and hailed two students walking into the school; “are yall going into the school,” “ yes,” they replied. “Will you take this glove to the lost and found?” they looked at me like I was a nut and took the glove. Apparently they walked some distance away and threw the glove back on the ground before entering the school because I saw it the next day. Now two ripples are set in motion. The first was my moving from “litter police” to lost and found pariah. The second ripple was two young people gently being confronted with a value apparently not their own and making a decision. How many confrontations before they take the glove to the lost and found? Maybe they never will. Maybe next time they are honest explaining that it is too much trouble and they are late for the basketball game and tell me where the lost and found is. Maybe they will endure a twinge of guilt talking to a gloveless classmate whose parents couldn’t buy another pair, and have an epiphany about our connectedness. To be clear this is not about picking up trash and replenishing the lost and found it's about little moments of involvement that add up, really add up.
I told a colleague about my zeal for picking up trash, it’s not that I’ve haven’t done it before, but now I looked at what prevented me from doing it on so many occasions. My colleague suggested having a box of those surgeon’s gloves on hand, cause ya never know what you are touching, comething to consider.
You may be wondering what was going through my mind when I picked up the glove on the next day. I didn’t pick it. I’m working on me too family.