About Me

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Did Socrates say "Know Thyself", or was he misunderstood, as all are. Show Thyself is all we can do. The knowing is unknowable.  

I am filled with joy.  It can't be helped.  

Became a Farmer, Builder, Musician, Tank Commander, Librarian, Lawyer and Minister. I have failed at many things. And now retired.  Filled, just filled, with Joy. 

Saturday, June 04, 2016

Your Calling is calling. Sound the (pssst) Trumpets!

At this point in your existential journey, have you been "called"?  
What summoned you? 

What vision do you have of a purpose or mission in the world?  
Are you envisioning?     

Statement of Calling

The Journey.

As child of missionaries who traveled the globe, grew up with mixed Christian and non-Christian challenges.  Saw suffering, fear, rape[TK1] , murder, hunger, and many forms of “thirst[TK2] ”.  In our village, and on a global scale.

Faith:  Never asked, as in Book of Job: “Why God permits Righteous Ones to suffer?”  Never want to increase the suffering; not able to stop it.  Never feel lost—never feel at home, except everywhere, in the Journey.   Never feel Tempted. Not even Tempted to Exist[TK3]  -- leave that up to God to work out.  Never doubt God; many doubts of Men.[TK4] 

Asked my Father and Mother many questions. They did their best, and apologized for preparing me so little for this world. And now, they are passed from it.  Midway, look back, see patterns. Shades of gray outcomes, shape a life.

Career dipped in farming, academia, music, soldiering, and law. 

Many successes and failures – colorful challenging life.  In 2011, my head, handed to me, on platter.  Experience “spirit breakdown[TK5] ”-- euphemism for becoming Eucharist.  [TK6] Had to withdraw.  

Now seeking to rejoin the World in another role. Called not to attend, but to “attend”.  Get tune in right key.  Be good counsel.  Not be voice that “darkeneth counsel by words without knowledge[TK7] ”. Going for Light, staying for company.  Can help. Rebuild Temple.

Cultivating all and the nine fruits of the Spirit.  Clinging particularly to Kindness. (In Nahuatl, no direct word for Kindness which does not connote idiocy or gullibility. Even so, raised by kind people in village). Emulating. Beyond words is words.[TK8]   This won’t be easy. 

The Calling:

In being called, I call.   So much more needed, for counseling, spiritual guidance, and strengthening Churches.  Being called to the Collar is not something one does without building muscles and armamentarium. Need tools for tasks.  Need healthier, better, sharper, gentler perspective.  Kindness.

God’s Mission Statement

After the Fall,
It’s either God’s Call,
or it’s not a Call. 

Disputation abounds.
It is manifestly certain little is certain.
Must build Church. 

All is vanity, and ends.
Not a moment to lose:
Must begin.

Holy Cross is mirror: 

Look in, Son of Man looks back.
Rising vector, plunges down; arms swing open, also hold. 
Just when think  magnetism pulls, repels. 
Alone, looking inside outside, see seeing seer. 
Past and Future join black hole Now. 
Eternity spins, from dreidel[TK10]  to grave.
Hologram[TK11]  inside Holy Ghost.

 [TK1] Rape.  In fact, this exercise/indulgence explores the patter of issues I have had with “authority”, and whether “connected”. Always a surprise to me. But then again, don’t want to frighten them.

 [TK2] “Thirst” is less abstract than “Desire”.

 [TK3] Sidereal reference to Emil Cioran’s work.

 [TK4]  Unknowable – The answer for what you don’t know is God. Great Unknown.

Life everlasting. The Story of God. Simply the story of existence -- In the beginning...
"Life is self-sustaining." --Morgan Freeman

Regardless of what they believe, people are more or less the same, and different.

 [TK5] Not “spiritual”; nothing spiritual about it. Spirit broke, spat on and stomped. But other than that, just fine.

 [TK6] Eucharist – a thanksgiving meal;  cap to convey idea of Sacrificial Body/Blood of a lamb.

 [TK7] Job 38:3, repeated 42:1, twice.

 [TK8] Beyond IS beyond.

 [TK9] Maimonides Guide to the Perplexed, studied by Leo Straus, Persecution and the Style of Writing. For reflection, we have scriptures and symbols, usually with hidden meanings. Why?

 [TK10]Each side of the dreidel bears a letter of the Hebrew alphabet: נ (Nun), ג (Gimel), ה (He), ש (Shin), which together form the acronym for "נס גדול היה שם" (Nes Gadol Hayah Sham – "a great miracle happened there"). The reference is to Existence, which happened here.

 [TK11] Hologram - The intermediate photograph (or photographic record) that contains information for reproducing a three-dimensional image by holography.

Does anyone study "theology" anymore? Has the "miraculousness" of existence finally risen to Scientific standards? Finally!

Why are you interested in studying "Theology"?     

PURPOSE: To study the miraculous: Everything. Existence and Non-existence.

 Midway upon Journey. 

“Nel mezzo del cammin di nostra vita mi ritrovai per una selva oscura che la diritta via era smarrita.”  Now in a dark forest of mid-life, I find the pathway lost. Turning to Theology as a resource for exploring the next part of the Journey.

It is my intention to live my purpose as a “shining star”.  Philippians 2:15.  Of the nine legendary fruits of the Spirit, I choose kindness to specifically embody.  I was raped at the beginning of my life.  I advanced through a series of remarkably similar incidents which clearly look like a “pattern” of consequences.  I was unaware of the pattern.  The unawareness, in spite of being completely conscious, clouded my choices and judgment. 

Only in maturity, only by the gift of hindsight, was I able to see patterns.
 I was not able to gauge at the time.  Not all Crosses are visible. Without being aware of it, bear its weight. Becoming aware of it, bear its fruit.

4    Without an Absolute, the Particulars are Meaningless - Plato

Not sure. Hope to find out and focus soon.  Am fairly certain “particulars” are not as important as Absolutes, but what is that in relationships?  The goals of studying are neither necessary nor an excuse.   Life is a long-delayed fulfillment of the opportunities and obligations laid before me.  Journey gives and takes.

Feel free to post your "Religious Autobiography" in the Comments

 Religious Autobiography.  
[Reflect on your past religious experience, including the most significant spiritual event/influence in your life, the role of a redeemer/Christ in your religious experience, your involvement in service, and your reason(s) for attending your church/temple/mosque/forest/desert. (minimum 250 words; maximum 500 words]

Religious Autobiography

Christian Experience

Born again.  In beginning was Word.  And translation issues.  Not born with language.  Baby picks up used tongue and puts in mouth[TK2] . Was third child of missionaries living in Aztec village about 60 miles and 400 years outside Mexico City.  Spoke Spanish, Nahuatl, and English, and none of them.  Father said learn to speak by Grace.  Mother said learn to read by Bible.  Experience constant miracles.

Moved to Bolivia, grew up in tropical jungle of Amazon delta. Visits to  Andes, Pampas, and flights to Mexico City, Guatemala, United States.  Intermittent attendance in public schools of Michigan, Oklahoma, Texas and California.  Sunday schools in synod–approved Presbyterian Bible Schools. Eagle Scout. Music for worship in over 100 Churches. Music creates ecumenical outlook. 

Spiritual experience

Every thought. Thoughts are God to a child always in His Hand.  Could not separate from His Presence, and never so inclined. Listening to others.  Began to understand Power of Prayer.
Learned of Ancient Egyptian civilization.  Now-lost lineages of Pharaoh took up Trinitarian God. Sons of women claimed to be Sons of God, prepared for Eternal Life.  Pharaohs believed Thoughts constituted evidence of divinity: “I think, therefore I am”.

When 17 years old in 1968, traveled  States, living off kindness of strangers and playing music.  Found little “chaos” and rebellion often described now of then.  Found constant generosity and kindness.  Huddled against cold nights, experienced ecstasies and out-of-body visions. (Recently, during hospitalization, saw “Heaven” clearly).  Hard-wired.

Drafted in last month of Vietnam era Draft. (Mexico and US universal Draft). Found, repeatedly, importance of Chapel to Soldiers.  So often facing displacement, boredom and death.

Role of Christ

Limned clearly in earliest Joban literature, great crying need for Redeemer, leitmotif of Whole Story. Christ, exemplar and Numen. Transgression against Name of Iesus Christo brings tear to eye. Message of love, is clear. Why rejected?

Involvement in Christian Service

Led Bible Studies in Claremont College. Before graduating from University of San Diego, began to build Church. Struggled for decades in Ramona.  Supported by farming, soldiering (300th Armor, National Guard), music, and construction. Passed Bar Exam, became Director of law firm with 29 employees.  Service-connected injury lit up deterioration and partial disability.  Led counseling programs for Veterans and their families. Lobbied in Washington DC.

With wife, tried to adopt orphans.  When political economy collapsed in Summer of 2008, clients gone. And Church still not built.  Lost health, peers, property, pride and hopes for family.
Failed so many ways, feels like success. Failure made us free.  Wife close, still have garden home with library. Continuing quietly “in service”.

Reason(s) for attending your Church

This Light beams me toward Unitarian Universalism:  Its creed adopts Christic exemplar.

 [TK2]OR We must pick up a tongue before we crawl.  

Sea Words

Every word is a question

In the beginning was the Question
From the first word spoke,
And that Question is the wall
Around which we poke.

Sea Walls hold back our Words
As we float upon the Sea,
Picking vocabularies from Seaweeds
Often snared, stuck in the Nets of our hearing. 

And our speeches are little spittle seeds

Sown upon the waves.

Bubbles of hello goodbye yes no hello
Where can we grow?

Why are so many "Christians" so unclear on the teachings and the concepts of Christianity? Hopkins "got it".

As Kingfishers Catch Fire 

As kingfishers catch fire, dragonflies draw flame;
       As tumbled over rim in roundy wells
       Stones ring; like each tucked string tells, each hung bell’s
Bow swung finds tongue to fling out broad its name;
Each mortal thing does one thing and the same:
       Deals out that being indoors each one dwells;
       Selves—goes itself; myself it speaks and spells,
Crying What I do is me: for that I came.
I say more: the just man justices;
       Keeps grace: that keeps all his goings graces;
Acts in God’s eye what in God’s eye he is—
       Christ. For Christ plays in ten thousand places,
Lovely in limbs, and lovely in eyes not his
       To the Father through the features of men’s faces.
"As Kingfishers Catch Fire" by Gerard Manley Hopkins. Public Domain.

Gerard clearly saying that in God's eye, each of us Christ.

It's not that There is no God; it's that all are.

Reverend Father Gerard Manley Hopkins, S.J*. was an English poet, Roman Catholic convert, and a Jesuit priest, whose posthumous fame established him among the leading Victorian poets. Wikipedia
DiedJune 8, 1889

  • Society of Jesus (formal name for Jesuits, Roman Catholic Order of men)