Making Sense of Life (or: Three Decorating Ideas for the Mind)

Wallace Stevens once said, “How full of trifles everything is! It is only one’s thoughts that fill a room with something more than furniture.” At first glance, this perhaps sounds like a Disneyesque reflection on the uses of a hearty imaginal life. Or—since Stevens was a poet—a reflection on the power of metaphor to set [Read More...]

The Proof’s in the Pudding (or What’s Churchy about Church?)

Imagine I’m sometimes asked how humanists can have “church” without invoking god. Here’s how I think about it: Imagine this scenario: When Imhotep in ancient Egypt invoked the great god Ra, he was invoking the human consciousness, not Ra Almighty. Imagine this: When Zadok, son of Ahitub, entered the holy of holies of Solomon’s brand [Read More...]

Disappear or Die: Southern Black Trans-Experience

  Today we bless Tela La’Raine Love as she prepares for her gender reassignment surgery.  Every day, Tela blesses this world with her courage, her determination, and her clear vision of a world where transwomen of color live safe, fulfilling, and long lives. Only in her 30’s, Tela serves as an elder, a mother, and [Read More...]

Spiritual But Not . . . Keep Talking

Literary critic Terry Eagleton said, “The din of conversation is as much meaning as we shall ever have.” I like that. On first glance, it appears to be bleak—human conversation is all the meaning there is? But imagine what human conversation has given us. Imagine the din of conversation under the porches and under the [Read More...]

What to Wear

OK, time for the teensiest bit of a rant, here. It starts with the fact that a girl named Jessica had her photo kept out of her high school yearbook because she was wearing a tuxedo. (Class pictures are required to be in either a tuxedo or a drape.) Or maybe it starts with the [Read More...]

Bomb Throwers, Navel Gazers, and Goin’ All Thoreau: Doing Justice

Let’s consider an extreme example, a stark instance of the decision between doing something and talking about it. The abolitionist John Brown, fed up with the endless wrangling and political maneuvering over slavery in the early Nineteenth Century, decided to take matters in his own hands. He led a group that attacked a US military [Read More...]

Earth Day Notes from New Orleans

Last week the Center hosted two groups of youth, one primarily people of color, one primarily white people. As the groups co-navigated the space of the Center and the programming, it was pretty clear to everyone why we talk about race and an analysis of racism as a gateway to serving in the New Orleans [Read More...]

Pagans, Cheasters, and Nones: Easter and Open-Source Religion

This coming Easter morning, many people will rise and look east. Some will go to a Christian church for their only visit this year. Many will be reminded by priests and preachers that this one day is not enough. Those strangers to churches will be telling the oldest of religious truths: it is the people, [Read More...]

Earth: Our Deep Home Place

The Greater New Orleans Unitarian Universalist cluster gathered in an oak -filled park on Sunday to celebrate Earth: Our Deep Home Place. As Earth Day approaches, I share with you a meditation, my invitation to celebrate our beloved planet: Cosmologian Thomas Berry wrote “Nothing is completely itself without everything else. This relatedness is both spatial [Read More...]

Let’s Agree to Agree on Subjectivity

There ain’t no answer. There ain’t gonna be any answer. There never has been an answer. That’s the answer. ~Gertrude Stein   In last week’s post I looked at one way to smooth the waters between theists and non-theists, Pragmatism. Pragmatists say, if it works for you, it’s true. Now, I know that’s a bit [Read More...]


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