The Wreck of the Old 97

Old 97

The wreck of the Old 97 took place on this day in 1903. … [Read more...]

Thinking of Mr Andrewes’ and that Bible, If Only for a Moment

King James Bible

The Anglican communion marks today as a feast in honor of Bishop Lancelot Andrewes. The English speaking world owes him honor as one of the principals among the forty-seven scholars who proved a committee could in fact produce a literary masterpiece, what we now call the King James Bible.I have friends who cast about earnestly looking for evidences of God's hand. Something, I fear, not often in evidence. However, thinking of forty-seven scholars producing something for the ages comes darn … [Read more...]

When the Saints Go Marching In: Celebrating Thomas Merton & Dorothy Day

Day & Merton

I must admit I've not devoted my full attention to the pope's visit to the United States. I find him an attractive figure, and particularly am impressed with his devotion to the poor, and appreciate his challenge to unfettered capitalism and his call to religious attention to the ecological crisis. However, while he has moved the issues to the back burner and has provided a more compassionate face to their enforcement, he has not moved from the church's Medieval understanding of anything that … [Read more...]

It’s over: Noting the Passing of Yogi Berra


The author of numerous cultural commentary "Yogiisms," such as "It ain't over till it's over" and "When you come to a fork in the road, take it," and almost incidentally a baseball player and coach, came to that famous fork in the road and took it. He died on Tuesday. He was ninety years old.A loss for all of us... … [Read more...]

SPIRITUALITY AFTER GOD: A Terrible and Beautiful Presence

Death Smiles

SPIRITUALITY AFTER GOD: A TERRIBLE AND BEAUTIFUL PRESENCEA Few Words on Why I Don’t Believe What I Don’t, and Why I Believe What I DoJames Ishmael FordIn a recent blog posting I celebrated a singular Anglican thinker, but quickly digressed into a rumination on how I find the premises upon which the Christian churches are founded to be past unlikely. I continued to say there could easily be a new church not based in theism, but elsewhere. This fairly quickly generated a rejoinder fro … [Read more...]

Images of the Divine Feminine: The Buddhist Shrine to Mary in Long Beach

Mary Shrine

Sunday evening as Jan and I were driving along Ocean Boulevard in Long Beach (in California for those who live near other Long Beaches) we noticed the Mary shrine attached to the Sagely Monastery was particularly lovely, with flowers and candles already lit and maybe half a dozen people there offering prayers. It was all quite wonderful. I recall the first time we drove by that corner of Ocean and Redondo and saw what appeared to be a couple who were either East Asian or both of East Asian … [Read more...]

THE BOOK OF JONAH: A Rosh Hashanah Meditation


THE BOOK OF JONAH: A Rosh Hashanah MeditationJames Ishmael Ford20 September 2015 Pacific Unitarian Church Rancho Palos Verdes, CaliforniaA StoryNow God said to Jonah, “Arise, go to Los Angeles, that great city, and cry against their wickedness.” But instead Jonah rose up to flee to Seattle and went and found a ship. God sent out a great wind into the sea, and there was a mighty tempest, so that the ship was about to be broken up off the coast of Santa Barbara. The mariners were … [Read more...]

Don’t Miss It! Today is International Talk Like a Pirate Day…


September 19th, International Talk Like a Pirate Day! One of those important holidays people too often miss. Now, if you need a little inspiration, here you go... … [Read more...]

A Passing Meditation on Edward Pusey, the Rise of the High Church Party in Anglicanism, Followed by a Sharp Digression Thinking About a Christianity Without Beliefs


While Edward Bouverie Pusey died on the 16th of September in 1882, and that day is observed as a feast throughout much of the Anglican communion, the feast itself in observed here in America on this day, the 18th of September.So, happy St Edward Day!I've always been fascinated with the High Church stream of Anglicanism. And, I must admit, I've always wondered why. My, as I like to think it, mature spirituality is pretty pure "liberal Buddhism." I find the insights articulated first by … [Read more...]

A Walk on the Beach

Palm Trees in Long Beach

This morning after breakfast (chopped up nectarine, Russian yogurt, and granola, washed down with freshly ground and recently roasted Polly's coffee) we took off on our morning perambulation.The Tsunami washed through our neighborhood about four thirty this morning. I'd not been able to do the walk yesterday having had to go up to the church early, but Jan said they'd been digging trenches along the natural washes from the bluff down to the beach. Only a couple of hours after the surge we … [Read more...]