2015 is not 1960

Teach Love, and hate will be homeless.
Teach Peace, and war will starve.
Teach Community, and crime will be unemployed.
Our priorities are what’s wrong.

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Throwing Christian Poop

I graduated many decades ago from a Christian university. It was a good school, highly ranked, challenging classes, so on. But one thing the school officials did then, and are doing now, apparently, is to throw poop like angry chimpanzees.

I had several professors back then who were bright, opinionated, but committed to a mission of teaching young people how to think for themselves. Most of those free-thinkers were eventually forced to get jobs elsewhere, though, because something about their philosophy or religion eschewed a tenet of the school’s doctrine. It didn’t matter if they knelt and prayed. They were targeted and pepper-sprayed (only figuratively).

It appears that Christian school is doing it again, only this time the targeted professor is a leading figure in their religion (he’s written books and articles and stuff), and students and staff are standing on his side of the line in the sand. I only met the guy once. His younger sister was a friend of a friend. But I’m impressed with the outcry over this.

What I’m not impressed by is that this sounds so much (figuratively) like another group of jokers in a desert, who scream and yell and throw bombs at people who don’t subscribe to their religion. And when the infidels leave, they scream and yell and throw bombs at people who do subscribe to their religion, but have chosen a different brand of sweetened drink.

Why do religious leaders act like chimpanzees in suits? Why do they throw poop like this? And do they use hand sanitizer?

First Draft Completed

My next novel, currently titled Killing Oak, has a completed first draft. It’s both exciting and disappointing to finish something like this. There’s more work to be done, but most importantly, everything is written down. It worked out to 73,000 words. I like my novels to be around 100,000. That’s unlikely to happen with this one, even after more drafts. But very few of the books I have edited are over 100,000 words.

I’ll start the editing and checking process tomorrow. But I’m excited to be in this place now.

Have a great day!

Your Life is Probably Pretty Good

I don’t believe in the practice of religion, although it does not matter to me if others do. I don’t care about converting anyone to my way of thinking or believing.

I do believe that there is a power of goodness. I don’t judge you if you call that power God. We can get into the nature of this goodness, but that would be mostly pointless because neither of us knows jack about said nature.

What I do know is that sometimes things happen that you ought to smile and be humbled about. You ought to appreciate those good things, and see what you can do to make good things happen to others, too. I don’t care what you call that.

A bunch of good things have happened recently that most people (possibly) would complain or whine about because they would appear to be stressors. But I look at these things as amazing timing.

I don’t believe Einstein plays dice with the world. But I am grateful and humbled that certain things have worked out the way they have.

Be well.

It Has Been

My wife was telling me about a friend going through some rough times. Personal stuff. Emotional stuff. And she said it was sad. But I disagreed. What this friend is experiencing is certainly challenging, but hardly sad. She’s in a negative situation and needs to get out of it. She needs to find her own place, her own footing, her own voice. And while she may cry a lot about her circumstances, they will make her stronger. One day that friend will look back at this year and know that it was a good year because of what she learned about herself.

This year has been one of those years for me. It hasn’t been sad. But it has been challenging. I prefer to look at it in terms of victories, though. We had to put my father in a memory care home, but that was a victory over confusion. Now he doesn’t have to worry about keeping his finances and groceries straight. My mother passed, but that was a victory over pain, as she had suffered for years with cancer, COPD and spinal issues. I had a regular job I didn’t care for most of the year, but that was a victory over unemployment. Now I have a better job, and my editing business is getting busier and busier.

Every failure leads you down a road toward victory, as long as you keep walking or running or driving in good faith.

If you never experienced defeat, never saw blood, never witnessed suffering or death, then you’d never have thick skin. You’d never overcome. And you probably wouldn’t care.

Suffering makes us stronger. And it makes us care.