Kindness Is A Vitamin

“Verily, Allah is compassionate and is fond of compassion, and He gives to the compassionate what He does not give to the harsh.”  – Muhammad I’ve returned to a time in life when I’m supposed to take my vitamins.  I was force fed them as a kid, along with a spoonful of castor oil, and […]

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Confucius Says

If the leaders desire what is good, the people will become good also.  –Confucius Some people doubt if Confucianism is a religion.  Confucius never talked about a god; he didn’t discuss the afterlife.  His sole interest was establishing what he called The Mandate of Heaven upon the earth.  He envisioned a perfect society, without crime, […]

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Blessed Are Those Who Do Not Mourn

A story is told about Chuang Tzu, the Taoist philosopher.  His wife had died, after forty years of marriage, and a friend named Huizi came to offer condolences.  Walking into the house, he found Chuang Tzu playing drums on a wooden bowl and singing.  “What are you doing?” Huizi exclaimed.  “People will think you don’t […]

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The Parable Of The Unscrupulous Judge

Faith can seem like the easiest thing.  All we have to do is believe.  There’s no physical exertion required.  Education is often seen as a hindrance.  It’s not something we have to spend much time thinking about.  In fact, the less thought we give to our beliefs the more it seems like faith. Appearances, of […]

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Aiming At Nothing And Hitting It

When I became a minister, my role as a pastoral counselor had special significance for me.  I regarded counseling as a professionally recognized practice.  Everything else about being a pastor—the ceremonies, the praying, the studying of religious books, the time spent with women who were home all day—seemed to be seen as more akin to […]

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A Time For Silence

“It’s all beyond me—how can I reply to you?  I put my hand over my mouth.”  – Job 40: 4 Sometimes nothing can be said.  Not everything can be put into words.  Language often trivializes what we’re trying to express, because our lexicon is completely inadequate to the occasion.  To say the universe is vast […]

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Show Me Your Doubt And I’ll Show You Mine

When I was in seminary, I became friends with a young Coptic priest from Ethiopia.  His name was Marcus, and we both worked as chaplaincy trainees in a large urban hospital.  One day, as we relaxed in the chaplain’s office, he described his personal cave.  On graduation from priesthood training in Egypt, Marcus was given […]

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The Spirit Road- Knowing We’re Known

There aren’t many things I know for certain.  I know I’ll be tired after three days with my grandchildren.  I know I enjoy margaritas.  I know I like to fish with my buddy in Canada.  But knowing all that isn’t really knowing very much.  If you ask me questions on a larger scale, like do […]

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A God Of Love

The Aztecs probably hold the record for most human sacrifices performed in a calendar year.  They believed in a God who fed on human blood, and their priests tore beating hearts out of chests to offer up as food.  Going to war was a form of farming, harvesting captives, then herding the divine victuals home […]

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Finding God- 2

There are all kinds of ways to hide.  Some people stay out of sight; others hide in plain sight.  Some people conceal themselves behind anger and bravado, others behind helplessness.   Some people hide by lying to others and other people hide by lying to themselves.  Some use the truth to lie.  In their hands, truthfulness […]

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