About Carl Gregg

The Rev. Dr. Carl Gregg is a trained spiritual director, a D.Min. graduate of San Francisco Theological Seminary, and the minister of the Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Frederick, Maryland. Follow him on Facebook facebook.com/carlgregg and Twitter @carlgregg.

Dissent: For Such a Time as This

(This post is a continuation of yesterday's theme of "Dissent.") When considering the ongoing struggle in this country to genuinely achieve peace, liberty, and justice for all (not merely for some), it is vital to remember that in the beginning of our nation, the deep injustice of slavery was inked into our Constitution. Article I, Section 2 calculates membership in the U.S. House of Representatives based on counting enslaved human beings as “three-fifths” of a person. And Article I, Section 9 e … [Read more...]

Dissent

In my tradition of Unitarian Universalism, it is significant to recall that this past Wednesday was the 200th anniversary of the birthday of our Unitarian ancestor Henry David Thoreau, who was born on July 12, 1817. Among many examples of dissent in Thoreau’s life, the most famous is that at age twenty-nine, during his time living in a cabin he built at Walden Pond, Thoreau spent the night in jail for nonpayment of a poll tax to protest the use of tax dollars to support slavery and unjust wars ( … [Read more...]

Robots (Not Immigrants) Are Coming for Your Job: Promise & Peril of Dataism as Religion

(This post is a continuation of yesterday's post on “A Brief History of Tomorrow”: What Apple, Facebook, & Google Don’t Want You to Know, inspired by Yuval Harari's book Homo Deus: A Brief History of Tomorrow.) There are positive benefits of big data. Public monitoring based on Google searches, called “Google Flu Trends,” can already give a warning about flu outbreaks “ten days before traditional health services.” It could be even more accurate, of course, if Google also searched private ema … [Read more...]

“A Brief History of Tomorrow”: What Apple, Facebook, & Google Don’t Want You to Know

I have posted previously about the bestselling book Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind by Yuval Harari, a professor of world history. His book wrestles with how we humans reached our present state. To take just one data point, a mere 150,000 years ago, there were approximately one million humans alive on earth. Today there are more than 7.3 billion of us, with more than one new human being added to the total each second! So what does the future hold? Will we continue to grow in number and … [Read more...]

Chögyam Trungpa & the Level/Line Fallacy

(This post is a continuation of yesterday's post on "Chögyam Trungpa & Pragmatic, Modern Meditation.") Given my post yesterday about Trungpa's shortcomings, why mention him at all today? The main reason is that despite his seeming ethical violations in some areas, it is nevertheless true that he had a particular genius for presenting traditional Buddhist teachings in a way that was accessible to a Western audience. He was a trailblazer in bringing Buddhism to the West. One significant pa … [Read more...]

Chögyam Trungpa & Pragmatic, Modern Meditation

I have posted previously about my interest in pragmatic approaches to meditation. Such approaches seek to balance the best of traditional Buddhism with all that we know here in the early twenty-first century. One significant figure in this movement (broadly speaking) is Chögyam Trungpa, who died in 1987 at the far too young age of 48 from health complications followings a heart attack. You’ll sometimes hear a title added at the end of his name, Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche, a Tibetan honorific that m … [Read more...]