Hate and Homo Sapiens

STAR LOG Had space aliens stopped by planet Earth a hundred thousand years ago, as homo sapiens first began to migrate north out of Africa, I suspect they would have noted in their star log that these evolving creatures had a very serious challenge before them: tribalism. Yes, the aliens would have noted, homo sapiens [Read More...]

#Baltimore and the Failure of Human Flourishing

HONESTY DOESN’T RULE Huffington Post called the president’s remarks on the Baltimore uprising “the most honest fifteen minutes of Obama’s presidency.” What did Obama get honest about? He said, In those environments, if we think that we’re just gonna send the police to do the dirty work of containing the problems that arise there, without [Read More...]

My Tribe by Alberto Blanco: A Way to Belong

In celebration of National Poetry Month, a translation from the great Mexican poet Alberto Blanco. In a few short sentences, Blanco excludes exclusion. My Tribe From lake to lake, from forest to forest: “Which is my tribe?” —I wonder— “What is my place?”  Perhaps I belong to the tribe of those who have no tribe; [Read More...]

Commit2Respond

The Unitarian Universalist (UU) faith has taken the stand that “Advancing the human rights of communities affected by climate change is a moral imperative.” The UU Commit2Respond call to action declares: “As people of faith and conscience, we have a responsibility to defend our home and care for each other, working to be in solidarity [Read More...]

Humanism and a Theology of Liberation (Without Strangling Priests)

Humanism does not require the death of God. All it requires is the affirmation of human freedom. William R. Jones ONE OF THOSE VICIOUS CIRCLES The French philosopher Denis Diderot, an Enlightenment era humanist, gets my vote for the most succinct summary of the connection between government, religion, and oppression: “People will never be free [Read More...]

Selma Plus Fifty: Time For an Eight-Lane Bridge

WHERE ONLY BLACK MEN JAYWALK We are rightly celebrating the bravery of people—both the famous and the forgotten—who contributed to the events at Selma, Alabama fifty years ago, events that led to a sea change in the civil rights of many US citizens. The anniversary has led inevitably to a question: Are things better now? [Read More...]

Apocalypse: What Death Cults Really Want

The recent Atlantic article by Graeme Wood, “What Isis Really Wants,” examines the Isis phenomenon from the vantage point of apocalyptic movements. It’s an insightful article. I’m just a bit confused at the reaction. We’ve had apocalyptic thinking living in our midst here in the US for some time. I grew up Pentecostal. Now that’s [Read More...]

Greenery Without People: The Future of Post-Religious Community

I don’t get it about the natural world. Like, greenery, without people in it, is supposed to do what? ~Charles Smith   How to do religious community in a post-religious world . . . . As a senior minister in an urban congregation, it’s something I think about every day. For most urban North Americans, [Read More...]

Selma: Death of a Meta-narrative

OK, I admit it—I love it when postmodernism calls it right. And the screeches and whines that have emanated over media since the film appeared are the sound of metanarratives dying. It was the French philosopher Jean-François Lyotard who postulated that the essence of postmodernism is “incredulity toward metanarratives.” A metanarrative is a big overarching myth [Read More...]

As the movement builds, let us remember

I learned in school that the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. had a dream. What I did not learn in school was that he had a vision and a clear sense of what it would take to get there. I was taught about how he worked to end racism, but not taught that he had [Read More...]


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