Blessed are the meek: for they shall inherit the earth. Matthew 5:5
Just home from some of the gentlest holiday travels I have known—time with family and friends, connecting around food and games and sweet conversation. And yesterday as I was flying home from a Connecticut visit with a friend and the pilot reduced altitude for landing, I watched from my windowed seat as the fields and curves below me shifted from the appearance of a two dimensional topographical map to the earth-bound realities of texture and depth—the realities of landscape we experience in close proximity. Continue reading
This is a re-post of a piece I wrote in 2014. Given recent events, it is as relevant and concerning as it was then–maybe more so. Please consider taking action at the link in the 2017 Update.
Inevitably we look upon society, so kind to you, so harsh to us, as an ill-fitting form that distorts the truth; deforms the mind; fetters the will.
Three Guineas. Virginia Woolf, 1938.
This morning I rose with the dawn to spend a little time inspecting all the greens that emerged after the Mother’s Day snowstorm and several days of heavy rain. Surprises abound. Continue reading
And it is STILL my favorite Christmas story. Here’s hoping each of us wears what becomes us this holiday season.
I was listening to NPR yesterday—an interview with Sir Tom Stoppard, screenwriter for the new Anna Karenina movie. When asked about the meaning of love he posed the question, “Are we born self-interested and we have to learn to be good? Or are we born selfless and merely corrupted by competition and institution?” I’m guessing there’s not any black or white answer to the question, though I was taught in my young religious days that we were born in total depravity with the need, of course, to be saved in an institution that just happens to make a lot of money off such doctrines—a truth that seems to belie the first argument in support of the second. Then there’s my own parenting that seems to betray the truths of corruption.
When my older son was five, he had a passion for Mary Poppins. He loved her magic, her command, her…
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I have a familiar ritual that follows the storms in my life. It goes something like this:
1. I cue up a song—one with mantra-like capabilities—and with a touch of a finger, instruct artist du jour to sing over and over and over again. For today, it’s Ingrid Michaelson:
Women have served all these centuries as looking-glasses possessing the magic and delicious power of reflecting the figure of man at twice its natural size… That serves to explain in part the necessity that women so often are to men. And it serves to explain how restless they are under her criticism; how impossible it is for her to say to them this book is bad, this picture is feeble, or whatever it may be, without giving far more pain and rousing far more anger than a man would do who gave the same criticism. For if she begins to tell the truth, the figure in the looking-glass shrinks; his fitness for life is diminished. How is he to go on giving judgement, civilising natives, making laws, writing books, dressing up and speechifying at banquets, unless he can see himself at breakfast and at dinner at least twice the size he really is?
A Room of One’s Own Virginia Woolf, 1929 Continue reading