Our Duty: Find our Place, Do Our Duty (Shakespeare’s Coriolanus)

Nothing is worse than when the rich oppress the poor except, perhaps, when the poor revolt and murder for justice. Oppression and revolution are both ugly. America has a ruling oligarchy too content in power, but also a rising underclass full of envy and ill considered anger. Nobody is right and everybody is wrong. We [Read More…]

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Worse things than Losing, Better things than Winning: Richard II

We have a Presidential candidate who says we are going to win so much as a nation that we will get tired of winning. On the other hand, he looks like a sure loser in the general election. Should winning (if he can fulfill his promises) or losing (if he can’t beat Hillary) determine if [Read More…]

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Did I ever tell you you’re my hero? (The Search for Henry V or Siegfried)

We are always looking for heroes. Often we find someone we admire, a political, religious, or cultural leader, only to be let down when we learn more about them. I have known some actual heroes and it gives me hope for the future. William Shakespeare helps us recognize a real hero by giving us an [Read More…]

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Woe is not Romantic: Just Ask Juliet and Romeo

Woe is not romantic, but art can make it feel that way. If a piece of literature, a movie, or a play is true to life, woe or sorrow or misery are good signs that you are in trouble. If nothing else, when romance hurts, physically or mentally, it is time to step back, get [Read More…]

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Lovers Win, Wise Guys Lose (Living “As You Like It”)

Love can make you stupid . . . or seemingly stupid. People in love believe all kinds of things and have hope that kingdoms can grow out of the wilderness. Shakespeare made kingdoms grow out of nearly nothing on the stage, surviving critics, censors, and plagues to achieve unmatched greatness . . . and yet [Read More…]

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Ending Envy and Revenge in Redemption (Learning from The Winter’s Tale)

It should be a tragedy, because envy and revenge always end in tragedy. They are the work of devils and Satan always comes to steal and destroy.  The Winter’s Tale does not end in death, but in marriages, the mark of a classical comedy, and so the author, William Shakespeare, reminds his audience that all tragedy [Read More…]

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Plato and Jesus

Certain critics of great books education fear that the books will replace the Book. They understand that not everyone who loves wisdom falls into vanity, but know that some of us do. They are right to worry, because certain authors are so good, so true, and so beautiful that they appear sufficient. Plato is one [Read More…]

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Patience to Be Free: Numbers is a Good Book

I get so tired in the book of Numbers of all the numbering. In fact, I grow impatient and then I pause. The book has done the work that needed to be done: I am impatient and a book theme of Numbers is the tragedy of impatience. God sends Moses to deliver Israel from Pharaoh [Read More…]

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Do Not Be A Scrooge (The Early One)

There is a weird fashion amongst conservatives to say something nice about Scrooge: he paid relatively well, he had a dry wit. Both of those are “facts” and yet nobody should want to be Scrooge . . . the early one. You can pay your workers (relatively) well and still make the workplace miserable if [Read More…]

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Islam: For the Sake of the Gospel, Let’s Tell the Truth

We cannot love our Islamic neighbor or expect them to come to Christianity through any ministry that misunderstands or lies about their beliefs. The so-called Islamic State (Da’esh) is not much of state and is not mainstream Islam. Don’t be confused. I am a Christian who belongs to a church with no illusions about Islam. If [Read More…]

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