At least, not for people like me.[*]
At least, not for people like me.[*]
A few days ago, in the “smoke pit” awaiting entry to the homeless shelter where I stay, I sat facing a choice of whether to feel good or feel bad. I allowed myself to stay in that state for some time so as to examine it. As I’ve observed many times in the past, it proved to be, apparently, a completely arbitrary choice.
This really puzzled, and puzzles me. Choosing to feel good creates light. Choosing to feel bad creates darkness. There is so much “darkness” in the world, and I want to understand how it comes about. Can it really be as simple as a wholly arbitrary choice? Continue reading Choosing to feel good is not a no-brainer
A Friend posted this on FaceBook:
Someone commented, “I don’t know how to stop thinking. Not until I lay down at night. Brain is always busy with something. Wish I could turn it off.”
Here I will seek to meet that person’s need.
From my diary for Friday 2015-05-01:
Ta-Nehisi Coates has had two “provocative” HuffPost columns in two days. Wednesday she decried calls for calm in Baltimore. Yesterday she used the incident of Toya Graham’s confrontation of her son, to blame white people for every incident of violence among blacks. [P.S. 12:00. Correction: The latter was by Stacey Patton.] I may yet respond to the latter, but it’s best I not do so today. I need to direct my thoughts and choose my feelings, and I feel immeasurably better when I focus on my own affairs than when I allow myself to get engaged with her turmoil. Today’s task is to prepare materials for the prayer course; and it will be no excuse if I tell my students I came unprepared because she distracted me.
Originally posted 2015-05-02.
This could change everything.
In recent weeks it has been a matter of some chagrin to me that my Yahoo! News feed keeps bringing articles from major outlets that prove in my estimation to have far less merit than my own; while my own work continues to be ignored.
Frankly, it seems to me that my work is on a par with that of the Washington Post columnists. I see myself as in that league. If I can find my way there, my goal would be not so much to set forth my own views, as to alter the direction of public discourse; to influence, perhaps even at a national level, the way people talk about the great questions of our time.
Life-changing events may be easily forgotten.
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The Serenity Prayer does not depend on belief in God, but rather expresses basic principles of life:
God, grant me
the serenity to accept the things I cannot change,
the courage to change the things I can,
and the wisdom to know the difference.
This pertains to where one directs one’s attention, how one chooses to feel, and where one focuses one’s desires. These are acts not of the mind, but of the will.
Jeffrey Tayler says, “Given the possibility that terrorists may acquire weapons of mass destruction and nuclear states with faith-based conflicts may let fly their missiles, religion may be said to endanger humanity as a whole. No one who cares about our future can quietly abide the continuing propagation and influence of apocalyptic fables that large numbers of people take seriously and not raise a loud, persistent, even strident cry of alarm.”
Fact: those who direct Iran’s nuclear program aren’t likely to listen to an atheist American Islamophobe.
This may seem unrealistic, even delusional; and much of the time, it has felt that way to me. But I’ve been here before, and know it’s not unrealistic at all. One drawback: it will pull me even farther away from the societal mainstream. But if I feel a “call” toward anything at all, it’s this path that I feel called to.