Sunday, September 20, 2009


I've decided to publish my knitting posts over at my main blog, Blue Gal, which also includes posts primarily about left-wing politics and occasionally about religion and faith. I've decided there is no point segmenting my life online any more than it already is. Thanks.

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

For friends and family

Send your own ElfYourself eCards

A friend, who's also a Friend, writes....

Are you still attending Quaker Meeting? Just curious.

I hope that you are well. Merry Christmas!

I've found a working out on that. I got in touch with the local Quaker group through Quaker finder and they do not currently have a First Day School, plus they are at the point where they are meeting in people's homes. That's all fine, but I really prayed about whether to walk into that vacuum at this point in my life and the way seemed closed to that...I am just not available spiritually and physically to do the amount of church building that I used to do in my 20's.

My children and I are attending United Methodist services. Their Sunday School program is absolutely awesome, especially for my 10 year old son. You may know he has high functioning autism. Anyway, his class has two GUY teachers who are cool and inspiring and call him "Dude."

The best thing about this church, though, is they have services all morning long, people coming and going, and they have a lovely quiet chapel off the main greeting room where I can walk right in and sit and be quiet for an hour after I drop off my kids. It's my own unprogrammed meeting, but it's what I need and doesn't offend anyone. I really see all of that as an example of God meeting the needs of everyone.

Anyway, I definitely still consider myself a Friend. I'm going to read A Holy Silence in January and write some about it, if so led...

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

The Mayfly Project

One of my readers kicked me to begin posting here again.

Yoga pointed me to The Mayfly Project, where you sum up your personal story for the past year in 24 words only. I made it into an art project:

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Blog Against Theocracy 2008 - Details

The Blog Against Theocracy blogswarm is coming Easter Weekend, March 21-23. If you wish to participate, write a post to your blog in favor of the Constitutional guarantee of the separation of Church and State, and submit the URL via this online form. More details are available at the Blog Against Theocracy website.


Wednesday, September 26, 2007

A safe place?

I've been thinking a lot this morning about this post from Sheffield Quakers, which dismantles the canard that "the Quaker Space is accepting because it is largely content-free - you can bring anything you like to it, but it has little to offer in itself." (Again the writer at Sheffield Quakers isn't saying this, but rebuffing it just as I am.)

Quaker meeting is not content-free. God is there. Silence and the trusting willingness to listen is present and required of us.

What is safety anyway? If being accepted for your humanity makes you feel safer, welcome to Quaker meeting. Now get ready for real danger. The battle is not out there, and it is not in the seat next to you. The battle, like the light, is within, and it is as painful and un-safe as anything you may have experienced outside your own thought. Those of us who have already been to hell, thank you very much, are not comforted by the "safety" of knowing that it "doesn't matter" to the person sitting next to us if we are gay, divorced, orphaned, in recovery, or unemployed. It doesn't matter anyway.

We've got listening to do, and the fight that requires the most strength is surrender. Surrendering any definition of human self in order to let God in, to let God define who we are and what we do. It is the hardest battle any of us will ever wage.

Looking for a safe place? Heh. Psalms 46.

(image from here)

Sunday, September 09, 2007

Death and silence.

Today meeting was very very quiet. We've lost another Friend this week, a 91 year old woman in an advanced stage of Alzheimer's. She was a hard-working contributor to the Quaker Meeting where ever she lived for most of her life, and many at Meeting today clearly felt a sense of quiet sadness over the loss, not just due to her death, but the loss of her mental presence when this horrible disease took her self-awareness away from her.

It was quiet. For the entire hour.

I thought about death and how we are tempted to think it's goodbye forever when someone passes away. I don't hypothesize about what happens after we die. But I do try to listen to God and the God I listen to is present and real to me. And I don't believe that omnipresent Love is absent or dissolves because we go through some physical change we call death.

So I won't write about what I think is true about human "life after death" but I can write unswervingly about what I believe to be true about God. And in the end I think that is what matters.

A fellow Friend wrote me just yesterday about the passing of his parents several years ago, that there were "still a whole list of "should have's" written on my heart. But they are fading."

I don't think they fade. I think those "might have beens and should have dones" are healed as we get closer to God and recognize our one-ness with Life and Love and Truth. We can connect to everyone else on this planet, and yes, those who have passed from it, by recognizing that one-ness. I love the term Namaste, which the blog by the same name points out:

As defined by Mahatma Gandhi: In India when people meet and part they often say, Namaste' which means:

"I honor the place within you where the entire Universe resides;
I honor the place within you of love, of light, of truth, of peace;
I honor the place within you, where,
when you are in that place in you,
and I am in that place in me,
there is only one of us."

That place within that is holy? It outlives death. I am convinced.

Friday, September 07, 2007

You are probably too busy to read this post.

Did you read this post?

I had two comments about it.

One is I loved this comment:

Quakerism just barely organized? Not my experience. I belonged to a meeting where active members had to be on 3-4 committees each in order to staff the cumbersome organization. I don't think that is very atypical. Quakerism today, particularly liberal unprogrammed Quakerism, tends to represent organization gone crazy, almost like a spreading cancer.

Secondly, I sat there wondering what would happen if all this turmoil about what it means to be Quaker were spent in silence with God... I have a LOT of work to do in that regard but I hope I'm awake to it part of the time, at least.

I remember when I worked for The Christian Science Mother Church during a time of great public turmoil. We had gone into TV and radio and were losing tons of money and it was about to fold and ultimately TV and radio did fold. I long time woman member in the church called and got me on the phone called me in TEARS. Sobbing and she wanted to talk to my boss it was sooo important. I took a deep breath and asked her if I could speak to her church member to church member, that I was NOT speaking officially for "The Church". She said yes I could. I told her very frankly that I thought the devil (CSer's call it Animal Magnetism but it's the same thing) was trying to get her so upset and busy that she would forget to pray. She got it right away. She took a breath herself and said she no longer needed to talk to my boss and she thanked me, she was going to go pray for church. My boss was grateful to hear about the call, natch, one less thing.

I think Quakers like Christian Scientists tend to be self-motivated thinkers, but that can getcha into trouble. Lack of humility, spinning wheels when it comes to what is going on in the church and in the world, and a sense of human busyness. Keeping the main thing the main thing is what matters. And for me the main thing about being a Quaker is putting a finger to the lips and listening.