Goodness is perpetuated by individuals while evil, more often than not, is perpetrated by groups.
Culture is changing rapidly before our eyes. Here are 7 important ways for Christians to live out the Gospel in a post-truth, post-fact culture.
Here are Carey’s suggestions:
1. Anchor yourself to what’s true
2. Stop the spin
3. Confess your role in it
4. Embrace love
5. Keep some distance from your political positions
6. Love people who oppose you
Not easy. But who says living in truth should be easy?
David Benner on accessing the mind of Christ
My dear friend Phileena Heuertz has just published on the website of her organisation, Gravity Center, a reflection on the way in which a comptemplative stance could help Christians in the US (and I would say, anywhere in the world) get some perspective ‘from above’ on the messy world in which we live.
Here is summary of her suggestions, which she gathers under the acronym ACTION:
Rear HERE the entire text.
Nota: Nu stiu cum mi-a scapat acest exceptional text al lui Andrei Plesu din Dilema, despre riscurile libertatii. Redau aici doar primele paragrafe ale textului, si paragraful final, care mi se pare genial, si care exprima mult mai bine decit as fi putut-o face eu vreodata, propriile mele framintari si convingeri legate de ;roblema libertatii. Sper ca acestea vor fi suficiente motivatii ca sa cititi intregul text pe situl revistei.
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Una dintre cele mai frumoase teme ale teologiei creștine este tema libertății acordate de Creator omului, așa încît din alcătuirea sa (gîndită „după chipul și asemănarea“ Autorului) să nu lipsească un atribut esențial: dreptul la alegere și inițiativă. Nu există „persoană“, în sens deplin, fără liber arbitru, fără autonomia deciziei și fără răspunderea propriilor decizii. Dumnezeu nu ne vrea „gata programați“, ființe teleghidate, care fac „ce trebuie“ pur și simplu pentru că nu au, în codul lor de fabricație, altă variantă. Dumnezeu nu vrea să dialogheze cu niște roboți, într-o lume „perfectă“ prin monotonie. Din punctul de vedere al Creatorului Atotputernic, această „concesie“ făcută libertății umane este un sacrificiu, o autolimitare. Un fel de a-Și atenua „atotputernicia“. Cu alte cuvinte, Dumnezeu renunță la ceva din „absolutitatea“ Sa, pentru a lăsa spațiu liber de manifestare creaturii Sale (incluzînd posibilitatea greșelii, a orgoliului și, la limită, a apostaziei). Dumnezeu lasă, deci, o șansă paradoxală derapajului, erorii, impurității, ne-iubirii, ne-credinței. Cîți suverani sînt capabili de așa ceva?Read More »
Filosoful Ciprian Mihali vorbeşte într-un interviu despre fenomene contemporane, cum ar fi corectitudinea politică, post-adevărul sau hipsterismul.
Despre postadevar si corectitudine politia, cu domnul Ciprian Mihali.
The Oxford English Dictionary’s 2016 Word of the Year was post-truth, an adjective describing “circumstances in which objective facts are less influential in shaping public opinion than appeals to …
This is Kelly Flanagan at his best. A must read.
We all entertain all sorts of beliefs about people, depending on our natural inclinations or of our life experiences. It often takes a hard experience to test these convictions and prove their validity.
Here are a few harsh truths about life which, when accepted, will save you lots of disappointments.
1. Nobody is actually too busy to respond to you
2. Everyone puts their own interests first
3. It’s impossible to keep everyone happy
Parker wrote today on his Facebook wall:
Last week, my friends at On Being — Krista Tippett’s extraordinary public radio program — posted a short piece I wrote titled “The Big Question: Does My Life Have Meaning?”
In case that’s a question that interests you — not re. my life but your own! — clicking on the image below will take you to that essay (and the lovely poem at its heart).
If you want to “Like” and/or comment on it, please come back here to do so. Thanks!
Ever been lost in the wilderness — or in the wilds of your own life? Me too! Because I get outwardly and inwardly lost from time to time, this poem by David Wagoner means a great deal to me.
A couple of years ago, I got lost hiking alone on a poorly marked mountain trail at Ghost Ranch in New Mexico, where I was on a ten-day silent, solitary retreat. It was starting to get dark, I panicked and began to run. Just the right thing to do when you have no idea where you’re going, don’t you think!
Then I remembered the wisdom in this poem, stood still, and listened. I could not tell you what I was listening to, except that it was something both in me and around me. After five minutes or so, as my fear subsided, that something told me to turn around and walk slowly back up the mountain, looking to the left as I climbed. That’s how I found the trail I’d missed in my fearful run down.
For me, that story and this poem have all kinds of implications for those times when I’m inwardly lost. I’ll spare you the long version of what I mean! I’ll simply say, with the poet, “Stand still. The forest knows/Where you are. You must let it find you.”
by David Wagoner, from Collected Poems 1956-1976
Stand still. The trees ahead and bushes beside you
Are not lost. Wherever you are is called Here,
And you must treat it as a powerful stranger,
Must ask permission to know it and be known.
The forest breathes. Listen. It answers,
I have made this place around you.
If you leave it, you may come back again, saying Here.
No two trees are the same to Raven.
No two branches are the same to Wren.
If what a tree or a bush does is lost on you,
You are surely lost. Stand still. The forest knows
Where you are. you must let it find you.
(Source, On Being.)
Parker J Palmer
is a columnist for On Being. His column appears every Wednesday. He is a Quaker elder, educator, activist, and founder of the Center for Courage & Renewal. His books include Healing the Heart of Democracy, A Hidden Wholeness: The Journey Toward an Undivided Life, and Let Your Life Speak: Listening for the Voice of Vocation.
A beautiful image gallery inspired by 11 quotes from Saint Augustine in his work The Confessions. May these words keep inspiring us as much today as yesterday in our search for the truth, which is nothing other than the search for God.
Some great truths to ponder for Catholics and non-Catholics alike.
I found this older post by David Benner o be most appropriate advice at the neginning of a new year. Here is just a quote:
‘Physicist Neils Bohr is famous for saying that while the opposite of a correct statement is a false one, the opposite of a profound truth is often another, seemingly contradictory, profound truth. No where is this more true than in the case of spiritual truths. But in order to grasp the larger truth – or better, to be grasped and held by it – it is essential that we be prepared to hold the tension associated with the two apparently contradictory elements.’
The particular mind of the ocean
Filling the coastline’s longing
With such brief harvest
Of elegant, vanishing waves
Is like the mind of time
Opening us shapes of days.
As this year draws to its end,
We give thanks for the gifts it brought
And how they became inlaid within
Where neither time nor tide can touch them.
Read More »
Cum zice la Scripturi, ‘prostia este lipita de inima omului’. Dar, cum credea Steinhardt, nu se poate ca cineva sa fie crestin si sa fie prost. Sau se poate, totusi?
Desi am cam fugarit de aici pe cei care ar putea face obiectul acestei povesti veridice, se mai aciuiaza cite unul, din cind in cind, mai ales cind apare vreun scandal. Asa incit, ca la sfirsit de an, ofer aici un prilej de meditatie. Multumesc ‘ieseanuluil’ Ion Creanga.
‘Today, any assertion of expertise produces an explosion of anger from certain quarters of the American public, who immediately complain that such claims are nothing more than fallacious “appeals to authority,” sure signs of dreadful “elitism,” and an obvious effort to use credentials to stifle the dialogue required by a “real” democracy.’
This, unfortunately, is true not only for the American public, but, increasingly also for the European cultural milieu.
Tom Nichols is an expert, and he dares to tackle this matter directly. In an article published by The Federalist, he suggests’ some things to think about when engaging with experts in their area of specialization.’
Here they are:Read More »
Felicitari prietenilor de la Edictum Dei. O initiativa superba.
For nine years now, the wonderful Maria Popova is sharing with us her Brain Pickings. I have received infiinite joy and wisdom from reading her pieces and sometimes digging further into the ‘wells’ she takes us to. Tis is truly life-changing for me. Thanks a lot, Maria.
Here are nine life-learnings that Maria is sharing with us after these years of intellectual and spiritual delight.
- Allow yourself the uncomfortable luxury of changing your mind.
- Do nothing for prestige or status or money or approval alone.
- Be generous.
- Build pockets of stillness into your life.
- When people tell you who they are, Maya Angelou famously advised, believe them. Just as importantly, however, when people try to tell you who you are, don’t believe them.
- Presence is far more intricate and rewarding an art than productivity.
- “Expect anything worthwhile to take a long time.”
- Seek out what magnifies your spirit.
- Don’t be afraid to be an idealist.
Read HERE what she means by these nine things. Enjoy!
Dr. Jonathan Camp discusses the book A Failure of Nerve by Edwin Friedman, who owes many of his ideas of leadership to Murray Bowen (1913-1990), a pioneer of family therapy. Central to Bowen’s family systems theory is the concept of differentiation, or the ability of a person to maintain a strong sense of “self” within the family. The anxious family system is composed of emotional triangles, in which two conflicting members try to diffuse the anxiety between them by bringing in a third member. But this only heightens the anxiety of the system. A well-differentiated person is able to resist the lure of emotional triangles, which causes the family system to mature by influencing others to take responsibility for themselves. In A Failure of Nerve, Friedman applies Bowen’s family systems theory to organizational leadership.
An excerpt from Plato’s Republic, the ‘Allegory of the Cave’ is a classic commentary on the human condition. It is a story of open-mindedness and the power of possibility.
Brene Brown studies human connection — our ability to empathize, belong, love. In a poignant, funny talk at TEDxHouston, she shares a deep insight from her research, one that sent her on a personal quest to know herself as well as to understand humanity. A talk to share.
FORGIVENESS is a heartache and difficult to achieve because strangely, it not only refuses to eliminate the original wound, but actually draws us closer to its source. To approach forgiveness is to close in on the nature of the hurt itself, the only remedy being, as we approach its raw center, to reimagine our relation to it.
Strangely, forgiveness never arises from the part of us that was actually wounded. The wounded self may be the part of us incapable of forgetting, and perhaps, not actually meant to forget, as if, like the foundational dynamics of the physiological immune system our psychological defenses must remember and organize against any future attacks — after all, the identity of the one who must forgive is actually founded on the very fact of having been wounded.
Stranger still, it is that wounded, branded, un-forgetting part of us that eventually makes forgiveness an act of compassion rather than one of simple forgetting. To forgive is to assume a larger identity than the person who was first hurt, to mature and bring to fruition an identity that can put its arm, not only around the afflicted one within but also around the memories seared within us by the original blow and through a kind of psychological virtuosity, extend our understanding to one who first delivered it. Forgiveness is a skill, a way of preserving clarity, sanity and generosity in an individual life, a beautiful way of shaping the mind to a future we want for ourselves; an admittance that if forgiveness comes through understanding, and if understanding is just a matter of time and application then we might as well begin forgiving right at the beginning of any drama rather than put ourselves through the full cycle of festering, incapacitation, reluctant healing and eventual blessing.
To forgive is to put oneself in a larger gravitational field of experience than the one that first seemed to hurt us. We reimagine ourselves in the light of our maturity and we reimagine the past in the light of our new identity, we allow ourselves to be gifted by a story larger than the story that first hurt us and left us bereft.
Source, Brain Pickings.)
1. Prayer is not a “spare wheel” that you pull out when in trouble, but it is a “steering wheel” that directs the right path throughout life.
2. Why is a car’s windshield so large & the rear view mirror so small? Because our PAST is not as important as our FUTURE. So, look ahead and move on.
3. Friendship is like a BOOK. It takes a few seconds to burn, but it takes years to write.Read More »
Scholars Aren’t the Enemy
Whenever I bring up the topic of the importance of culture and context in understanding the Scriptures, folks sometimes respond with: “What about new converts, or uneducated people?” Aren’t you putting the gospel out of reach of the “non-scholar masses?”
However, Christian anti-intellectualism is a work of the flesh just as much as sexual immorality. Only it is more dangerous as it has been given tacit approval under a form of perceived superior spirituality in large segments of the Body of Christ.
From the first second of a REAL conversion a human is indwelt by the Spirit and that is good enough for kingdom fruitfulness!
I have the privilege of working with a church where new converts are present in good proportion and have seen this with my own eyes. This blog is not rhetoric and philosophy for me. They are amazingly effective, transformed, and empowered, operating in the gifts of the Spirit, and they don’t know Genesis from Revelation . . . in the beginning of their walk.Read More »
“If someone proved to me that Christ is outside the truth and that in reality the truth were outside of Christ, then I should prefer to remain with Christ rather than with the truth.”
Dostoevsky said that if he were forced to choose, he would choose Christ over the truth. That is a very bold and provocative claim.
What do you say?
Yes, I know, we don’t have to choose. I get that. I agree. Of course.
But for a moment entertain the matter as Dostoevsky intends it — as a kind of thought experiment. If it were conclusively proven that the central claims regarding Jesus Christ were outside of the truth, what would you do? Would continue to worship and follow Jesus Christ or not?
I’ve pondered this question a lot and I have a few thoughts.Read More »
Joanna Macy is a philosopher of ecology and a scholar of Buddhism. Her translations include Rilke’s Book of Hours: Love Poems to God and A Year with Rilke. She is the author of Active Hope: How to Face the Mess We’re in without Going Crazy.
This is the latest interview that Krista Tippett made for her American public radio programme On Being.
We all want to use our talents to create something meaningful with our lives. But how to get started? (And … what if you’re shy?) Writer Kare Anderson shares her own story of chronic shyness, and how she opened up her world by helping other people use their own talents and passions.
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Here is the transcript of this motivational speech:
1:16 So my idea to reimagine the world is to see it one where we all become greater opportunity-makers with and for others. There’s no greater opportunity or call for action for us now than to become opportunity-makers who use best talents together more often for the greater good and accomplish things we couldn’t have done on our own. And I want to talk to you about that, because even more than giving, even more than giving, is the capacity for us to do something smarter together for the greater good that lifts us both up and that can scale. That’s why I’m sitting here. But I also want to point something else out: Each one of you is better than anybody else at something. That disproves that popular notion that if you’re the smartest person in the room, you’re in the wrong room. (Laughter)
2:23 So let me tell you about a Hollywood party I went to a couple years back, and I met this up-and-coming actress, and we were soon talking about something that we both felt passionately about: public art. And she had the fervent belief that every new building in Los Angeles should have public art in it. She wanted a regulation for it, and she fervently started — who is here from Chicago? — she fervently started talking about these bean-shaped reflective sculptures in Millennium Park, and people would walk up to it and they’d smile in the reflection of it, and they’d pose and they’d vamp and they’d take selfies together, and they’d laugh. And as she was talking, a thought came to my mind. I said, “I know someone you ought to meet. He’s getting out of San Quentin in a couple of weeks” — (Laughter) — “and he shares your fervent desire that art should engage and enable people to connect.” He spent five years in solitary, and I met him because I gave a speech at San Quentin, and he’s articulate and he’s rather easy on the eyes because he’s buff. He had workout regime he did every day. (Laughter) I think she was following me at that point. I said, “He’d be an unexpected ally.” And not just that. There’s James. He’s an architect and he’s a professor, and he loves place-making, and place-making is when you have those mini-plazas and those urban walkways and where they’re dotted with art, where people draw and come up and talk sometimes. I think they’d make good allies. And indeed they were. They met together. They prepared. They spoke in front of the Los Angeles City Council. And the council members not only passed the regulation, half of them came down and asked to pose with them afterwards. They were startling, compelling and credible. You can’t buy that.
4:29 What I’m asking you to consider is what kind of opportunity- makers we might become, because more than wealth or fancy titles or a lot of contacts, it’s our capacity to connect around each other’s better side and bring it out. And I’m not saying this is easy, and I’m sure many of you have made the wrong moves too about who you wanted to connect with, but what I want to suggest is, this is an opportunity. I started thinking about it way back when I was a Wall Street Journal reporter and I was in Europe and I was supposed to cover trends and trends that transcended business or politics or lifestyle. So I had to have contacts in different worlds very different than mine, because otherwise you couldn’t spot the trends. And third, I had to write the story in a way stepping into the reader’s shoes, so they could see how these trends could affect their lives. That’s what opportunity-makers do.
5:32 And here’s a strange thing: Unlike an increasing number of Americans who are working and living and playing with people who think exactly like them because we then become more rigid and extreme, opportunity-makers are actively seeking situations with people unlike them, and they’re building relationships, and because they do that, they have trusted relationships where they can bring the right team in and recruit them to solve a problem better and faster and seize more opportunities. They’re not affronted by differences, they’re fascinated by them, and that is a huge shift in mindset, and once you feel it, you want it to happen a lot more. This world is calling out for us to have a collective mindset, and I believe in doing that. It’s especially important now. Why is it important now? Because things can be devised like drones and drugs and data collection, and they can be devised by more people and cheaper ways for beneficial purposes and then, as we know from the news every day, they can be used for dangerous ones. It calls on us, each of us, to a higher calling.
7:00 But here’s the icing on the cake: It’s not just the first opportunity that you do with somebody else that’s probably your greatest, as an institution or an individual. It’s after you’ve had that experience and you trust each other. It’s the unexpected things that you devise later on you never could have predicted. For example, Marty is the husband of that actress I mentioned, and he watched them when they were practicing, and he was soon talking to Wally, my friend the ex-con, about that exercise regime. And he thought, I have a set of racquetball courts. That guy could teach it. A lot of people who work there are members at my courts. They’re frequent travelers. They could practice in their hotel room, no equipment provided. That’s how Wally got hired. Not only that, years later he was also teaching racquetball. Years after that, he was teaching the racquetball teachers. What I’m suggesting is, when you connect with people around a shared interest and action, you’re accustomed to serendipitous things happening into the future, and I think that’s what we’re looking at. We open ourselves up to those opportunities, and in this room are key players and technology, key players who are uniquely positioned to do this, to scale systems and projects together.
8:29 So here’s what I’m calling for you to do. Remember the three traits of opportunity-makers. Opportunity-makers keep honing their top strength and they become pattern seekers. They get involved in different worlds than their worlds so they’re trusted and they can see those patterns, and they communicate to connect around sweet spots of shared interest.
8:55 So what I’m asking you is, the world is hungry. I truly believe, in my firsthand experience, the world is hungry for us to unite together as opportunity-makers and to emulate those behaviors as so many of you already do — I know that firsthand — and to reimagine a world where we use our best talents together more often to accomplish greater things together than we could on our own. Just remember, as Dave Liniger once said, “You can’t succeed coming to the potluck with only a fork.” (Laughter)
9:38 Thank you very much. Thank you. (Applause)
Mă uit în jur, răsfoiesc ziare, stau la televizor şi constat că problemele dintotdeauna ale vieţii omeneşti au fost evacuate în spaţiul anonim al vieţii private, sau al culturii de nişă. Despre dramă se vorbeşte mai curînd în cheie telenovelistică, despre suferinţă – în cheie clinic profilactică, despre idealuri şi reuşită – în cheie pragmatic corporatistă. Avem puzderie de „manuale“ care ne învaţă (în doi, trei, sau zece paşi) cum să obţinem bunăstarea lăuntrică şi succesul profesional, avem nenumărate compendii de buzunar pentru deprinderea „tehnicilor“ zen, yoga, sufi, reiki etc., dar, în realitate, atenţia noastră, reflexivitatea noastră au alte priorităţi. Dincolo de o generală nevoie de „reţetar“, viaţa noastră interioară e pustie, amuţită de urgenţe, de oboseală, de gata-făcutul unei exteriorităţi sufocante, oferite, pînă la indigestie, de scena publică. Pe scurt: nu e zi să nu fiu întrebat cu cine votez, ce cred despre X sau Y, cum apreciez cutare sau cutare situaţie, dar nimeni nu mă întreabă dacă sînt fericit. „Bine“, mi se va răspunde, „dar ar fi o indiscreţie“. Nu vorbeşti despre lucruri de genul ăsta la colţ de stradă, cu primul venit. Păi, tocmai asta spun: am ajuns să evacuăm din spaţiul nostru de comunicare tot ce priveşte tulburarea noastră lăuntrică, zbaterea cotidiană, mereu nemărturisită, pe care suferinţele, iubirile, spaimele noastre o întreţin mocnit, dincoace de cuvinte. Nu ne ruşinăm să „consumăm“, la lumina zilei, secrete de alcov „dezvăluite“ de tabloide, sau de „picante“ emisiuni de divertisment, dar sîntem pudici cu sentimentele noastre, cu depresiile noastre, cu euforiile şi neliniştile noastre.Read More »
A new text by Maria Popova on CS Lewis.
Legea morala nu-i una de care asculti, ci una cu care comunici, care stie sa te asculte. Inainte de a cere obedienta, legile sunt sispuse a fi lasata sa fie puse in discutie, si eventual induplecate… Respectarea legii molare nu are sens devcit daca e precedata de o optiune libera, de libera recunoastere a validitatii si a suprematiei ei. Legitima e doar legea pe care o alegi, in cunostinta de cauza. Iar pentru a fi eligibila, ea trebuie, pe de o parte, sa ti se faca placuta… iar pe de alta parte sa-ti lase dreptul unei alte alegeri, (Andrei Plesu – Minima moralia)