Challenge

Going Steady With Buddhism

Going Steady With Buddhism

"Life" Issues, affirmation/s, Atheism, autonomy, awareness, Buddhism, Challenge, Change, Christianity, contemplation, critical judgment, God, inner peace, liberation, meditation, Mystery, spiritual growth, spiritual practice, The Divine, Uncategorized, way of life
What follows is strictly and exclusively based on my experience and should in no way or to any extent whatsoever be interpreted as normative for others. I am speaking of and for myself here, no one else. Nor should anything I say be interpreted as a critique of Christianity, the tradition I was raised in and that I followed for about 55 of my 70 years. Whatever critique I have of Christianity is strictly and exclusively a critique of Christianity in relation to my thought, life, and experience, no one else’s. That said … I am pretty sure I am in the process – it is a process – of becoming a practicing Buddhist. I have been flirting around the edges of Buddhism for some time, studying Buddhist texts, reading books by, e.g., Alan Watts, D. T. Suzuki, Thich Nhat Hanh, et al. And all t
Nationhood And “The Root Of All Evil”

Nationhood And “The Root Of All Evil”

Abundance, activism, awareness, bigotry, causality, Challenge, Change, citizenship, civics, Compassion, conflict, conservatism, Consumerism, critical judgment, culture, Economy, Ethics, Failing, Fascism, hate, history, Ideology, injustice, justice, law, Muslims, Naziism, Paul von Hindenburg, political rhetoric, Politics, Poverty, racism, resentment, Secularity, social justice, soldiers, Statistics, Suffering, Tolerance, Treaty of Versailles, Uncategorized, Weimar Republic, World War I
I recently told my Beguine editor, Terri Stewart, that, because I regarded the re-election of Trump as quite likely, I considered politics a dead subject for leftists / progressives, at least for the near- and medium-term future, and that I would henceforth write about science, art, philosophy, in other words, anything except politics. I had every intention of abiding by that resolution until I read a column by Hugh Hewitt in the Washington Post of April 27 exulting in his prediction – which, to repeat, is probably accurate – that Trump would not only win the election in 2020, but that the election would not even be “close” (Hewitt’s word, not mine). The reasons Hewitt cites for that prediction, while factually accurate, go straight to the heart of what it means to be a nation – and,
Jumping The Abortion Shark

Jumping The Abortion Shark

"Life" Issues, Abortion, activism, autonomy, awareness, Challenge, Change, Christianity, citizenship, civics, conflict, conservatism, contraception, critical judgment, culture, doubt, entering into suffering, epistemology, First Amendment, Freedom, God, Ideology, justice, life, Ontology, Pain and Suffering, Philosophy, political rhetoric, progressive politics, Rationality, Religion, Science, Secularity, Sexuality, Suffering, Supreme Court, Theology, Uncategorized, Women
I have been closely following the history of the hyper-restrictive – grossly over-restrictive, in my estimation – abortion laws and bills, including the so-called “heartbeat” laws / bills. As a result, I have become convinced that the biggest problem with the abortion debate – both pro-choice and pro-life -- is that both parties assume they know one helluva lot more than they actually do, in fact, one helluva lot more than anybody knows about what a fetus in a womb actually is, “ontologically”. In fact, both parties assume that they know one helluva lot more than anyone can know, even in principle. First, we need to define some terminology.  Consider the word “phenotype”. “Phenotype” refers to those characteristics of a biological organism that are naked-eye, empirically,