Happy Birthday, John Adams

John Adams, second president of the United States of America was born on this day in 1735. He assisted Thomas Jefferson in the writing of the Declaration of Independence. He is the author of the Massachusetts constitution.One of the more moving events for Jan and me not long after we relocated out here to Massachusetts, was visiting the First United Parish in Quincy, the Unitarian Universalist congregation where Adams, his beloved wife Abigail, their son John Quincy and his spouse Louisa are all … [Read more...]

Teresa of Avila

I see how yesterday was the feast of St Teresa of Avila, one of only three women to be named a “Doctor” of the Roman Catholic Church, and to my mind one of the greatest of Catholic theologians. I wish I’d noted this significant marker yesterday, but am happy to do so today. Actually, writing as a Unitarian Universalist Buddhist, somehow perhaps this slight lag is appropriate. Teresa is one of my favorite believers in the Christian religion. She and her special friend and sometime confessor St Joh … [Read more...]

Shunryu Suzuki on Breathing

When we practice zazen (Zen meditation) our mind always follows our breathing. When we inhale, the air comes into the inner world. When we exhale, the air goes out to the outer world. the inner world is limitless, and the outer world is also limitless. We say 'inner world' or 'outer world,' but actually there is just one whole world. In this limitless world, our throat is like a swinging door. The air comes in and goes out like someone passing through a swinging door. If you think, 'I breathe,' … [Read more...]

HERDING CATS: Toward a Unitarian Universalist Spirituality

HERDING CATSReflecting on Unitarian UniversalismAnd the Way of Radical HospitalityA Sermon byJames Ishmael Ford14 October 2007First Unitarian SocietyNewton, MassachusettsTextHow wonderful it is to live in harmony with all people: like stepping out of the bath, your whole body fresh and vibrant; like a morning dew, glistening on the tiniest blade of grass. It is God's infinite blessing, a taste of eternal life.133rd Psalm (trs by Stephen Mitchell)It hasn’t been a month, a blink of an eye, a … [Read more...]

Al Gore

While pretty widely expected, I was, nonetheless, excited to learn Al Gore has won the Nobel Peace Prize together with the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.I think it is way too late for him to throw his hat into the ring for the Democratic nomination, but a google search showed at least three organizations pushing to draft him and several opportunities for people to sign petitions urging him to do so.Frankly, I prefer the "recovering politician."But, I have to admit, I find myself … [Read more...]

Voices of a Liberal Faith

There is some interesting conversation about the video at Philocrites. … [Read more...]

St Thomas Didymus

St. Thomas Didymus In the hot street at noon I saw him a small man gray but vivid, standing forth beyond the crowd's buzzing holding in desperate grip his shaking teethgnashing son, and thought him my brother. I heard him cry out, weeping and speak those words, Lord, I believe, help thou mine unbelief, and knew him my twin: a man whose entire being had knotted itself into the one tightdrawn question, Why, why has this child lost his childhood in suffering, why is this child … [Read more...]

Susan Murphy Asks What is Forgetting the Self?

"There is no curriculum for work on character except life, and no graduation from it except death. How we die is just the final articulation of our character spoken in the hearts of those we leave behind. The whole matter is properly a modest business. Good character is not expounded, it is merely lived. And shame, not praise, is its compass. Perfection of character is indeed a koan, like the bodhisattva vows - we must resolve what it may be as moment by moment enquiry into who we really are, … [Read more...]

On Not Acknowledging the Armenian Genocide

When practical politics becomes shameful."Who, after all, speaks today of the annihilation of the Armenians?" Adolf Hitler … [Read more...]

Dharma Cowboys

Check 'em out! … [Read more...]