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.
Connect the dots however you like. Can you connect them all?
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.
In a blog post of July 19, 2014, I declared my ambition to become the “Nemesis of the morning glories” in the garden out behind my church. My plan was to spend four hours per week specifically weeding the morning glories in that garden.
On Monday, October 20, 2014, I wrote, “The morning glories are vanquished. As of today, they are under control throughout the entire garden.”
On Tuesday 12/02, my therapist asked for a thumbnail summary of my overall situation.
I said, “I have goals, I’m taking concrete steps toward those goals, and I have a ton of hope.”
I know no way to account for this but the exact scenario I set forth in “Chaos overwhelms the poor:” I pay attention only to the concrete here-and-how, and to what I myself can do. (Related: Here – Now – Can.) From the farthest reach of my right fingertip to my right, to the farthest reach of my left fingertip to my left: within that range lies all my responsibility, everything that I can control. Here, the world appears orderly. Here, I can order and manage my affairs. Here I have power. I can act effectively. I can easily find hope.
I have seen pictures and videos of places where parakeets run wild; there are flocks of hundreds and thousands of them. I would love to live in such a place. It lifts my spirits every time I see their brilliant colors. Continue reading What great thing can I do?→
There is a song from The Sound of Music that relates; it concludes, “… I simply remember my favorite things, and then I don’t feel so bad.”
Wednesday morning I stood outside McDonald’s having my last smoke before leaving. I considered that as soon as I got to the library, I’d need to count my pennies and plan spending for the rest of the week. I pondered whether or not to buy a soda on my way there. I’d had some unusual spending earlier in the week, and faced some more unusual spending in connection with the 4th of July (The library’s closed.). The wisdom of having bought or not bought a soda at this time would depend on the outcome of that planning.