Like A Rolling Stone: Bob Dylan Turns Seventy-Five

Robert Allen Zimmerman was born on this day in 1941.Bob Dylan provided a great deal of the background music of my youth. And, somehow over the years he just kept rolling along with one reinvention after another. But who would have thought three quarters of a century? … [Read more...]

A Feast for the Astronomers

You have to love the Episcopalians.They have marked out today as a Feast for Nicolaus Copernicus & Johannes Kepler.The Collect for the day begins, "As the heavens declare your glory, O God, and the firmament shows your handiwork, we bless your Name for the gifts of knowledge and insight you bestowed upon Nicolaus Copernicus and Johannes Kepler; and we pray that you would continue to advance our understanding of your cosmos, for our good and for your glory..." It then concludes with a … [Read more...]

In Case You’re Wondering. The Money Monster is No Big Short.

When Jan & I went to see Money Monster, I was thrilled. I enjoyed the trailers, and am such a big fan of George Clooney and Julia Roberts, who together with Jack O’Connell star in the film. I was about a third of the way through the movie when I realized I was not going to love it.Now don’t get me wrong. Alan DiFiore, Jamie Linden, and Jim Kouf’s script has truly fun moments throughout. The actors are fun and on occasion their characters are actually engaging. I loved the comic relief assis … [Read more...]

It was on This Day that the Unitarian Hindu Reformer Rammohan Roy was Born

Ram Mohan Roy (also spelled Rammohan Roy) was born in Radhanagar, Bengal, on this day in 1772.A towering intellect, seeker of justice, and religious reformer, Roy deserves to be more widely known outside of India. He is generally credited as coining the term "Hinduism" as an overall term for the family of religions on the Indian subcontinent. He was an advocate for women's rights best known as a fierce opponent of sati the practice of "suicide" by widows, called for a major reform of the … [Read more...]

No, I Ain’t Misbehavin’

Even if some may think so...And with that a tip of the hat to the wondrous Thomas Wright Waller, known to all as "Fats," born on this day in 1904. … [Read more...]

It’s On This Day in 325 that Constantine Opens His Council and Christianity Begins to Be Defined

For those who like to say that Christianity was "invented" by the Emperor Constantine, well, this is your day! It was on this day in 325 that the emperor convened what has come to be called the First Council of Nicaea. While a birthday wish for Christianity is a tad over the top, it is an enormously significant marker in the consolidation of a Christian orthodoxy. The council, the first of seven recognized as "universal" within mainstream Christianity established what is now considered the … [Read more...]

Ruben Habito, Christian Zen Master

A friend posted this interview with Dr Ruben Habito, one of my favorite spiritual teachers. A Christian, for many years a Jesuit, and a fully acknowledged Zen master within the Harada-Yasutani koan Zen school. I consider Ruben a friend and a mentor. It's a little old, from the late nineteen nineties. Worth a watch. Challenging to Christians. Challenging to Buddhists. And, I am firmly convinced, a direct pointing to the real.And, so long as we're on the subject, at no extra charge here's … [Read more...]

You Complain that Buddha is Hard to Find

Just found myself thinking of the poet and sort of Zen guy, Hanshan.Talking about food won’t make you full, Babbling of clothes won’t keep out the cold. A bowl of rice is what fills the belly; It takes a suit of clothing to make you warm. And yet, without stopping to consider this, You complain that Buddha is hard to find. Turn your mind within! There she is! Why look for her abroad?(slightly adapted from) Burton Watson, translator Cold Mountain: 100 Poems by the T’ang poet Han-s … [Read more...]

Recalling Marriage Equality Coming to Massachusetts

The good folk at Wikipedia inform us that it was on this day in 2004, "the first legal same-sex marriages in the U.S. (were) performed in the state of Massachusetts."A heady time...As the century turned it was becoming obvious that marriage equality was going to happen, if only here and there. In the United States various marriages of fleeting legality had been performed, as well as in many quarters, marriages without legal sanction. As a Unitarian Universalist minister, at the time … [Read more...]

Karma, Rebirth, & Seeking the Great Healing

After I delivered my sermon in which I unpack the renowned "Fox koan" for a Unitarian Universalist audience, and I was greeting people as they left the church, a man waited until near the end of the line. When most everyone was finished we shook hands and he introduced himself as a psychotherapist. He said he was concerned about the idea of reincarnation for a very practical reason. He had patients who were suffering terrible events in their lives. And they had been told by adherents of … [Read more...]