Transitions


Western thought is difficult to untangle from Western religion since the latter so often formed the former.   We like to be sure of things.  Sure there is a God.  Sure that sins are forgiven. Sure that God called me to this or that. Sure that there is an eternity, that it has...

On listening for a shy God’s voice in a noisy culture


It is very odd knowing that Something exists and seeks connection with us (we often refer to her as “God”) and yet having no actual proof. We call this “faith” and sometimes “belief.” Recently something happened in my life that reminded me of this tenuous hold I have on the...

The Fall Into Grace


Might we please reconsider the idea that God tells us if we are good or bad? Through disasters or cancers interpreted as celestial discipline? Through clergy telling us, they have interceded on our behalf to pronounce blessing or absolution? Through the ups and downs of “It’s Easter - hurray -...

Formation


To examine one’s own life is to notice the patterns.  What keeps appearing?  What happens over and over again? What is life trying to teach me? Yesterday I had an open house at my pottery studio.  Guests came to visit, in masks, some from an hour’s drive, one at a time and sat...

Loopholes


The difference between faith and belief is one of those loopholes which has long kept me out of trouble among my more pious clergy friends.  I’m always getting yelled at about things I write. It’s fun; it’s sort of like ecclesial bumper cars. I love loopholes.  They can be so...

Resilience


The clay I form on the pottery wheel when I have some time off from work, is a kind of companion to me.  We talk.  Sometimes we argue. Sometimes we just sit together looking out the long windows that offer a view of the island’s rainy, green forests. Yes, we sit together,...

Delightful Darkness


In the darkness of the Dark Ages (about 500 ad to about 800 ad), God was presented to the people by the bishops and clergy as a fearful, veiled mystery, off in the distant darkness, angry, brooding and vengeful. God was presented more like a vicious teenager than a loving creator.  It kept...

Leaving a mark


These are the chop markers I use to leave a mark on the pots I make at my potter’s wheel.  This is a tea bowl that I had recently turned upside-down, up-ending it to carve the “foot” of the bowl smooth and then marking it as “by the hand of...

It’s Dangerous


“It’s dangerous being a prophet; especially in times of upheaval.”  Episode two, late December 2020  from The Stand, CBS All Access, based on the Stephen King novel of the same name and spoken by a kind, good, pandemic survivor. More than half a century ago, about when President Kennedy was...

Martinis and Miracles


As Christmas approaches, I wondered today, what made me happy about the season.  Gingerbread martinis.  I know. A good Christian would have thought perhaps, of Lessons and Carols Festivals - I was that Christian once. Or perhaps of Midnight Mass - well, to be honest, I found it horribly exhausting....