I Don’t Need A Holiday

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While I’m having a quiet day at home this Thanksgiving, I’m feeling the deep settled-in peace of gratitude. Made it through surgery last month, made it through 2 days of fasting and an unpleasant medical procedure, made it most of the way through a difficult work project, family and friends are all relatively well. Life’s not perfect, but it sure is an adventure, one I’ll happily take. It’s tempting to comment today on such recent firestorms as the riots in Ferguson, the continuing atrocities by … [Read more...]

What We All Want

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The light bulb came on for me this week.It was a big interfaith week for me here in South Carolina.  Last Sunday Interfaith Partners held our annual meeting, at which I gave a very brief report on something Cherry Hill Seminary students are doing.  Then Thursday I traveled to Aiken to meet with a fledgling group there.  Yesterday I popped by the big dedication festivities for a new Hindu (BAPS) temple in my own neighborhood.I love this stuff, love the people I meet, love the friends I’ve … [Read more...]

What’s Compassion Got to Do With It?

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In a few hours I'll be on a panel for the annual meeting of Interfaith Partners of S.C.  Each faith represented is supposed to share what they have been up to in terms of expressing compassion.  For months I have wondered how to approach this task.  The following are the remarks I will make when it's my turn; I'd love to hear your responses, or even suggestions for the future.For followers of one of the earth-based spiritual paths which are collectively referred to as Paganism, articulating a … [Read more...]

Talking Our Way to Understanding

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The living room dialogue went swimmingly.  We started by going around the circle, first person sharing with the person to their left something about their religion that they think is different from everyone else, second person reflecting back what they heard the first person say.  Then the second person turned to the third person in the circle, and so forth.  No big surprises or problems here.Then I asked the group to think about the people who do not understand their religion, perhaps even f … [Read more...]

People Like Me

"We know we all believe in the same god."I sighed as a couple of friends around the table caught my eye with a knowing look. The new people at last week’s interfaith meeting were introducing themselves, and their use of this tired, inaccurate aphorism was, no doubt, their way of stating that they were in harmony with all the others present. As often as I refer to plural “gods” or say out loud that we are not all the same, I have come to accept that most people cannot hear that message. They d … [Read more...]

Cynicism, Solidarity & Communitas

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Do Pagans have a basic misunderstanding of what is meant by the term “interfaith”?Comments to a recent Wild Hunt blog were disturbingly juxtaposed with evening news reports of horrible sectarian violence in the Middle East. A sampling:“Interfaith work is often just another way for other people to try and convert us” “No thank you. Pagans need to focus on Pagans and leave others to do their thing.” “I'm sure at those meetings it's rainbows and butterflies. When the rubber hits the road t … [Read more...]

Same and Different

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Respect for our differences is our common ground. – Don FrewThis was just one nugget of wisdom gleaned during an interfaith panel at last week’s Covenant of the Goddess annual Leadership Workshop, “Standing On Common Ground,” held this year at the beautiful Chattahoochee Nature Center in Roswell, Georgia. CoG interfaith representatives spoke from a panel during the morning session, and in the afternoon they were joined by community representatives of several faiths: Baha’i’, Unity, Buddhist, … [Read more...]

Journey to Ithaca: Remembering Dr. Hal French

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“When you start on your journey to Ithaca, then pray that the road is long, full of adventure, full of knowledge.” (from “Ithaca” by Constantine Cavafy)On Wednesday I attended the funeral of my venerable friend, Dr. Hal French, along with 400 or more others.  The ceremony was grand, loving, thought-provoking and tender, with three lovely hymns, three eulogies and a magnificent organ-recital piece at the close. The line to greet family stretched through and in and out of several buildings; wai … [Read more...]


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