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
As someone who is moving into the outer fringes of what we may reasonably call “old age” – I will be 70 on 5 April 2019 – I have already learned some valuable lessons, all of which will apply to some and some of which will apply to all. For whatever it may be worth, the following is what I have learned so far. Pick and choose the lessons that are relevant to you.
o Old age need not advance gradually
With me, I began to move into the exurbs of old age in a single week, perhaps even a briefer time than that.
In late August of 2012, I was returning from a 3-week trip to Wichita, KS, to see relatives, what few I have left in my family of origin. I was jammed into the back seat, just forward of the tailcone, of a small Embraer jet on a flight to Denver to make connections
If there were more Christians and Christian ministers like the Rev. Terri Stewart, there is a pretty good chance -- who knows for sure? -- that I would still be one, too. And if there were more monotheists like Terri, it is a pretty safe bet that -- while there no guarantees -- I most likely would not, as I presently do, regard monotheistic religion as a malignant canker on the arse of human spirituality. (For the record: I do have deep and abiding respect for non-theistic religions, e.g., Buddhism and Taoism, where One Big Guy does not run Everything.) We do have our differences, e.g., Terri is much more reluctant than I to offend people. But let's not quibble. Most of all, let's not quibble, given that Terri recently wrote and published what I regard as the most realistic, level-he