Daily Practice for 2016.04.10

Word:

So much crazy rhetoric going around regarding bathrooms. Ultimately, it comes down to, "Who should be safe in a bathroom?" Actually, everyone should be safe. Everyone. If a person in a bathroom feels unsafe due to another person, that should be a reportable offense. But it should center on safety, not perceived gender of the other. Gender should not be a threat.

I think part of the crazy around bathrooms is the rhetoric that "men cannot control their base urges" (i.e. rape culture) and that women are vulnerable and need laws that tell them what to do with their bodies. After all, I am hearing no rhetoric about the men's bathroom being invaded and the fear men may have. A perfect storm of gender and cis politics. It is not helped by random cis men who use their privilege and power to intrude into the space of bathrooms to make a political point. These men are not trying to belong. They are trying to upset people and make them feel unsafe. Gender politics. Because we must control what others do with their bodies in order to feel safe in our own. What if we simply taught people to respect one another?

Market-Share to Mind-Share. Let's move from scarcity and control to sharing and freedom.

Today's practice is inspired by transgender artists. I include music from Coyote Grace, a poem from Lee Mokobe, and sacred wisdom from Laverne Cox along with readings from the Jewish and Christian lectionaries, the Qur'an, and the Bhagavad Gita.  The photo is mine.

Onward!

Opening:

Let my heart rise up to meet mercy, my voice to meet compassion, my hands to meet action.

BIBOLOVE: Breath In, Breath Out--yum

Music:

Guy Named Joe by Coyote Grace

Who am I to change my name?
Some things will always stay the same
There really ain’t no one to blame
Can’t expect nobody to live in that pain
But I know you miss me so
I said goodbye to everyone I know
And one morning I awoke
And I was this guy named Joe

Readings:

"Can you see how easy it is to talk people into coffins?"

Sacred Text

For full, typed-out scripture, follow this link 

Leviticus 14:1-12
Psalm 10-17
1 Peter 1:23-25
Luke 24:13-35
Qur'an Surah 3.102-109
Bhagavad Gita 4.3-6

Please bring your own sacred readings to the daily pattern. If there is something else you'd like to see, let me know! The readings are from the Daily Torah Study, the Christian Lectionary, and reading the Qur'an and Bhagavad Gita straight through.

Sacred Quotable

Each and every one of us has the capacity to be an oppressor. I want to encourage each and everyone of us to interrogate how we might be an oppressor and how we might be able to become liberators for ourselves and for each other. -Laverne Cox

Prayers:

2016.04.10

For the oppressed and weary
Especially for #blacklivesmatter and
for the LGBTQIAP community.
For signs of despair and violence,
for the use of tear gas on refugees trying to enter Macedonia
for the breaking of Uganda's only radiotherapy unit
for the fire in a temple in India, killing about 100
for US victims of gun violence in the last 72, hours,
158 incidents, 45 killed, 91 injured
For signs of hope and peace,
for the disruption of a terrorist plan to hit France
for the Syrian refugee run schools in Egypt, helping kids get back to school
for the bear cub rescued in a bush fire in Lake County, Florida
for the delivery of hay to Queensland, Australia, during severe drought
For East Timor, Indonesia, and the Philippines
For those who suffer, are homeless, or are sick
For those we love, those we hate and those we are indifferent to
For the transformation from ME to WE

Let peace prevail on earth.
So may it be.

Lord’s Prayer:

Translation by Neil Douglas Klotz, Sufi

O Birther! Creator of the Cosmos,
Focus your light within us— make it useful:
Create your reign of unity now-
Your one desire then acts with ours,
as in all light, so in all forms.
Grant what we need each day in bread and insight.
Loose the cords of mistakes binding us,
as we release the strands we hold
of others’ guilt.
Don’t let surface things delude us,
But free us from what holds us back.
From you is born all ruling will,
the power and the life to do,
the song that beautifies all,
from age to age it renews.
Truly— power to these statements—
may they be the ground from which all
my actions grow: Amen.

May Peace Prevail on Earth. Amen. So mote it be.

2016 04 10

Notes:
"Amen" means "may it be so."
"May peace prevail on earth." is an addition inspired by Michael Dickel 
BIBOLove is an addition attributed to the work of Soyinka Rahim, InterPlay practice, BIBOLove

bibo

News Notes:
Mass shooting resource
Wars in the World
Prayer cycle of the world's countries
Good news

Today's Scriptures:

Leviticus 14:1-12

The Complete Jewish Bible with Rashi Commentary

1 And the Lord spoke to Moses, saying,

2 This shall be the law of the person afflicted with tzara'ath, on the day of his cleansing: He shall be brought to the kohen.
3 The kohen shall go outside the camp, and the kohen shall look, and behold, the lesion of tzara'ath has healed in the afflicted person.
4 Then the kohen shall order, and the person to be cleansed shall take two live, clean birds, a cedar stick, a strip of crimson [wool], and hyssop.
5 The kohen shall order, and one shall slaughter the one bird into an earthenware vessel, over spring water.
6 [As for] the live bird, he shall take it, and then the cedar stick, the strip of crimson [wool], and the hyssop, and, along with the live bird, he shall dip them into the blood of the slaughtered bird, over the spring water.
7 He shall then sprinkle seven times upon the person being cleansed from tzara'ath, and he shall cleanse him. He shall then send away the live bird into the [open] field.
8 The person being cleansed shall then immerse his garments, shave off all his hair, and immerse [himself] in water, and become clean. After this, he may enter the camp, but he shall remain outside his tent for seven days.
9 And it shall be, on the seventh day, that he shall shave off all his hair: [that of] his head, his beard, his eyebrows; indeed, all his hair, he shall shave off. He shall then immerse his garments and immerse his flesh in water, thus becoming clean.
10 And on the eighth day, he shall take two unblemished [male] lambs, one unblemished ewe lamb in its [first] year, three tenths [of an ephah] of fine flour mixed with [olive] oil as a meal offering, and one log of [olive] oil.
11 And the kohen who is performing the cleansing shall place the person being cleansed [together] with these [things], before the Lord, at the entrance of the Tent of Meeting.
12 And the kohen shall take one [male] lamb and bring it as a guilt offering, along with the log of oil, and wave them as a waving before the Lord.

http://www.chabad.org/library/bible_cdo/aid/9915#lt=primary

Psalm 10-17

The Complete Jewish Bible with Rashi Commentary

Chapter 10
This psalm tells of the wicked one’s prosperity and his boasting of it, until he says: “There is neither law nor judge. God pays no attention to the actions of mere mortals.”

1. Why, O Lord, do You stand afar, do You hide Yourself in times of distress?
2. The wicked man in his arrogance pursues the poor; they are caught by the schemes they have contrived.
3. For the wicked man glories in the desire of his heart, and the robber boasts that he has scorned the Lord.
4. The wicked one in his insolence [thinks], “He does not avenge”; all his thoughts are, “There is no God.”
5. His ways always succeed; Your retribution is far removed from before him; he puffs at all his foes.
6. He says in his heart, “I shall not falter; for all generations no evil will befall me.”
7. His mouth is full of oaths, deceit and malice; mischief and iniquity are under his tongue.
8. He sits in ambush near open cities; in hidden places he murders the innocent; his eyes stealthily watch for the helpless.
9. He lurks in hiding like a lion in his lair; he lurks to seize the poor, then seizes the poor when he draws his net.
10. He crouches and stoops, then the helpless fall prey to his might.
11. He says in his heart, “God has forgotten, He conceals His countenance, He will never see.”
12. Arise, O Lord! O God, lift Your hand! Do not forget the lowly.
13. Why does the wicked man scorn God? Because he says in his heart, “You do not avenge.”
14. Indeed, You do see! For You behold the mischief and vexation. To recompense is in Your power; the helpless place their trust in You; You have [always] helped the orphan.
15. Break the strength of the wicked; then search for the wickedness of the evil one and You will not find it.
16. The Lord reigns for all eternity; the nations have vanished from His land.
17. Lord, You have heard the desire of the humble; direct their hearts, let Your ear listen,
18. to bring justice to the orphan and the downtrodden, so that [the wicked] shall no longer crush the frail of the earth.

Chapter 11
This psalm declares that the suffering of the righteous one is for his own benefit, to cleanse him of his sins; whereas the wicked one is granted prosperity in this world-similar to the verse, "Wealth remains with its owner, to his detriment."

1. For the Conductor, by David. I have placed my trust in the Lord; [thus] how can you say of my soul, your mountain,1 that it flees like a bird?2
2. For behold, the wicked bend the bow, they have readied their arrow upon the bowstring, to shoot in darkness at the upright of heart.
3. They destroyed the foundations; 3 what has the righteous man done?
4. The Lord is in His holy Sanctuary, the Lord's throne is in heaven, [yet] His eyes behold, His pupils probe [the deeds of] mankind.
5. The Lord tests the righteous, but He hates the wicked and the lover of violence.
6. He will rain down upon the wicked fiery coals and brimstone; a scorching wind will be their allotted portion.
7. For the Lord is righteous, He loves [the man of] righteous deeds; the upright will behold His countenance.

FOOTNOTES
1.Your king (Metzudot).
2.And will eventually be captured by Saul (Metzudot).
3.Refering to the murder of the priests in the city of Nob.

Chapter 12
This psalm admonishes informers, slanderers, and flatterers.

1. For the Conductor, upon the eight-stringed instrument, a psalm by David.
2. Help us, Lord, for the pious are no more; for the faithful have vanished from among men.
3. Men speak falsehood to one another; with flattering lips, with a duplicitous heart do they speak.
4. May the Lord cut off all flattering lips, the tongue that speaks boastfully-
5. those who have said, "With our tongues we shall prevail, our lips are with us, who is master over us!”
6. Because of the plundering of the poor, because of the moaning of the needy, the Lord says, "Now I will arise!" "I will grant deliverance," He says to him.
7. The words of the Lord are pure words, like silver refined in the finest earthen crucible, purified seven times.
8. May You, O Lord, watch over them; may You forever guard them from this generation,
9. [in which] the wicked walk on every side; when they are exalted it is a disgrace to mankind.

Chapter 13
A prayer for an end to the long exile. One in distress should offer this prayer for his troubles and for the length of the exile.

1. For the Conductor, a psalm by David.
2. How long, O Lord, will You forget me, forever? How long will You hide Your countenance from me?
3. How long must I seek counsel within my soul, [to escape] the grief in my heart all day? How long will my enemy be exalted over me?
4. Look! Answer me, O Lord, my God; give light to my eyes, lest I sleep the sleep of death.
5. Lest my enemy say, "I have overcome him," [and] my oppressors rejoice when I falter.
6. I have placed my trust in Your kindness, my heart will rejoice in Your deliverance. I will sing to the Lord, for He has dealt kindly with me.

Chapter 14
This psalm speaks of the destruction of the two Holy Temples-the first by Nebuchadnezzar, and the second by Titus.

1. For the Conductor, by David. The fool says in his heart, "There is no God!" [Man's] deeds have become corrupt and abominable, no one does good.
2. The Lord looked down from heaven upon mankind, to see if there was any wise man who searches for God.
3. They have all gone astray together, they have become corrupt; there is none who does good, not even one.
4. Indeed, all the evildoers, who devour My people as they devour bread, who do not call upon the Lord, will [ultimately] come to know [the consequences of their actions].
5. There they will be seized with fright, for God is with the righteous generation.
6. You scorn the counsel of the lowly, that he puts his trust in the Lord.
7. O that out of Zion would come Israel's deliverance! When the Lord returns the captivity of His people, Jacob will exult, Israel will rejoice.

Chapter 15
This psalm speaks of several virtues and attributes with which one should conduct oneself. He is then assured that his soul will rest in Gan Eden.

1. A psalm by David. Who may abide in Your tent, O Lord? Who may dwell on Your holy Mountain?
2. He who walks blamelessly, acts justly, and speaks truth in his heart;
3. who has no slander on his tongue, who has done his fellowman no evil, and who has brought no disgrace upon his relative;
4. in whose eyes a despicable person is abhorrent, but who honors those who are God-fearing; who does not change his oath even if it is to his own detriment;
5. who does not lend his money at interest, nor accept a bribe against the innocent. He who does these things shall never falter.

Chapter 16
When one is in need, he should not implore God in his own merit, for he must leave his merits for his children.

1. A michtam,1 by David. Watch over me, O God, for I have put my trust in You.
2. You, [my soul,] have said to God, "You are my Master; You are not obligated to benefit me.”
3. For the sake of the holy ones who lie in the earth, and for the mighty-all my desires are fulfilled in their merit.
4. Those who hasten after other [gods], their sorrows shall increase; I will not offer their libations of blood, nor take their names upon my lips.
5. The Lord is my allotted portion and my share; You guide my destiny.
6. Portions have fallen to me in pleasant places; indeed, a beautiful inheritance is mine.
7. I bless the Lord Who has advised me; even in the nights my intellect admonishes me.2
8. I have set the Lord before me at all times; because He is at my right hand, I shall not falter.
9. Therefore my heart rejoices and my soul exults; my flesh, too, rests secure.
10. For You will not abandon my soul to the grave, You will not allow Your pious one to see purgatory.
11. Make known to me the path of life, that I may be satiated with the joy of Your presence, with the bliss of Your right hand forever.

FOOTNOTES
1.A psalm that was especially precious to David
2.To fear and love God (Rashi)

Chapter 17
A loftily person should not ask God to test him with some sinful matter, or other things. If one has sinned, he should see to reform himself, and to save many others from sin.

1. A prayer by David. Hear my sincere [plea], O Lord; listen to my cry; give ear to my prayer, expressed by guileless lips.
2. Let my verdict come forth from before You; let Your eyes behold uprightness.
3. You have probed my heart, examined it in the night, tested me and found nothing; no evil thought crossed my mind; as are my words so are my thoughts.
4. So that [my] human deeds conform with the words of Your lips, I guard myself from the paths of the lawbreakers.
5. Support my steps in Your paths, so that my feet shall not falter.
6. I have called upon You, for You, O Lord, will answer me; incline Your ear to me, hear what I say.
7. Withhold Your kindness-O You who delivers with Your right hand those who put their trust in You-from those who rise up against [You].
8. Guard me like the apple of the eye; hide me in the shadow of Your wings
9. from the wicked who despoil me, [from] my mortal enemies who surround me.
10. Their fat has closed [their hearts]; their mouths speak arrogantly.
11. They encircle our footsteps; they set their eyes to make us stray from the earth.
12. His appearance is like a lion longing to devour, like a young lion lurking in hiding.
13. Arise, O Lord! Confront him, bring him to his knees; rescue my soul from the wicked [who serves as] Your sword.
14. Let me be among those whose death is by Your hand, O Lord, among those who die of old age, whose portion is eternal life and whose innards are filled with Your concealed goodness; who are sated with sons and leave their abundance to their offspring.
15. Because of my righteousness, I shall behold Your countenance; in the time of resurrection, I will be sated by Your image.

http://www.chabad.org/dailystudy/tehillim.asp?tdate=4/10/2016

1 Peter 1:23-25

The Voice version

23 You have been reborn—not from seed that eventually dies but from seed that is eternal—through the word of God that lives and endures forever. 24 For as Isaiah said,

All life is like the grass,
and its glory like a flower;
The grass will wither and die,
and the flower falls,
25 But the word of the Lord will endure forever.[a]
This is the word that has been preached to you.

Footnotes:
a. Isaiah 40:6b–8

Luke 24:13-35

The Voice version

13 Picture this:

That same day, two other disciples (not of the eleven) are traveling the seven miles from Jerusalem to Emmaus. 14 As they walk along, they talk back and forth about all that has transpired during recent days. 15 While they’re talking, discussing, and conversing, Jesus catches up to them and begins walking with them, 16 but for some reason they don’t recognize Him.

Jesus: 17 You two seem deeply engrossed in conversation. What are you talking about as you walk along this road?
They stop walking and just stand there, looking sad. 18 One of them—Cleopas is his name—speaks up.

Cleopas: You must be the only visitor in Jerusalem who hasn’t heard about what’s been going on over the last few days.

Jesus: 19 What are you talking about?

Two Disciples: It’s all about the man named Jesus of Nazareth. He was a mighty prophet who did amazing miracles and preached powerful messages in the sight of God and everyone around. 20 Our chief priests and authorities handed Him over to be executed—crucified, in fact.

21 We had been hoping that He was the One—you know, the One who would liberate all Israel and bring God’s promises. Anyway, on top of all this, just this morning—the third day after the execution— 22 some women in our group really shocked us. They went to the tomb early this morning, 23 but they didn’t see His body anywhere. Then they came back and told us they did see something—a vision of heavenly messengers—and these messengers said that Jesus was alive. 24 Some people in our group went to the tomb to check it out, and just as the women had said, it was empty. But they didn’t see Jesus.

Jesus: 25 Come on, men! Why are you being so foolish? Why are your hearts so sluggish when it comes to believing what the prophets have been saying all along? 26 Didn’t it have to be this way? Didn’t the Anointed One have to experience these sufferings in order to come into His glory?
Luke has told his story. It ends with joy and praise. The crucified Jesus has been resurrected and has ascended to heaven to take His place at God’s right hand just as the ancient prophets predicted. For the band of disciples, Easter joy has eclipsed Good Friday sorrow.

This ending point becomes the starting point for Luke’s sequel, known as the Acts of the Apostles. The story isn’t really over; it’s just begun. The life and ministry of Jesus that Luke has just recounted is the mustard-seed stage of the kingdom of God that continues to grow and grow and grow. Now it’s time for this Kingdom to fill the world. If Luke’s Gospel is about what Jesus began to do and teach, then Luke’s sequel is about what the risen Jesus continues to do and teach through His followers for millennia. Luke writes in hope that future believers will be taken up into this beautiful story that will never, ever end.
27 Then He begins with Moses and continues, prophet by prophet, explaining the meaning of the Hebrew Scriptures, showing how they were talking about the very things that had happened to Jesus.

28 About this time, they are nearing their destination. Jesus keeps walking ahead as if He has no plans to stop there, 29 but they convince Him to join them.

Two Disciples: Please, be our guest. It’s getting late, and soon it will be too dark to walk.
So He accompanies them to their home. 30 When they sit down at the table for dinner, He takes the bread in His hands, He gives thanks for it, and then He breaks it and hands it to them. 31 At that instant, two things happen simultaneously: their eyes are suddenly opened so they recognize Him, and He instantly vanishes—just disappears before their eyes.

Two Disciples (to each other): 32 Amazing! Weren’t our hearts on fire within us while He was talking to us on the road? Didn’t you feel it all coming clear as He explained the meaning of the Hebrew Scriptures?

33 So they get up immediately and rush back to Jerusalem—all seven miles—where they find the eleven gathered together—the eleven plus a number of others. 34 Before Cleopas and his companion can tell their story, the others have their own story to tell.

Other Disciples: The Lord has risen indeed! It’s true! He appeared to Simon!

35 Then the two men report their own experience—their conversation along the road, their moment of realization and recognition as He broke the bread.

Quran Surah 3.102-109

Quran: A Simple English Translation

102 Believers, fear God as is His due, and when death comes, be in a state of complete submission to Him.

103 Hold fast to the cord of God and let nothing divide you. Remember the blessings He has bestowed upon you; you were enemies and then He united your hearts and by His grace you became brothers; you were on the brink of an abyss of Fire and He rescued you from it. Thus God makes His signs clear to you, so that you may find guidance.

104 Let there be a group among you who call others to good, and enjoin what is right, and forbid what is wrong: those who do this shall be successful.

105 Do not be like those who, after they had been given clear evidence, split into factions and differed among themselves: a terrible punishment awaits such people.

106 On the Day when some faces are bright and some faces are dark, it will be said to those with darkened faces, ‘Did you reject faith after accepting it? Taste, then, this punishment for having denied the truth!’

107 But as for those with shining faces, they shall abide forever in God’s grace.

108 These are God’s revelations; We recite them to you in all truth. God desires no injustice to mankind.

109 His is all that the heavens and the earth contain. To God shall all things return.

Khan, Maulana Wahiduddin; Goodword (2013-12-11). Quran: A Simple English Translation (Goodword ! Koran) (Kindle Locations 1022-1033). Goodword Books. Kindle Edition.

Bhagavad Gita 4.3-6

This is the ancient doctrine
that I have taught you today,
since you are my devotee and friend.
This is the innermost doctrine.

ARJUNA SAID:

But you were born countless eons
later than the god of the sun.
How, then, is it possible
that you taught this doctrine to him?

THE BLESSED LORD SAID:

Many times I have been born,
and many times you have, also.
All these lives I remember;
you recall only this one.

Although I am unborn, deathless,
the infinite Lord of all beings,
through my own wondrous power
I come into finite form.

Mitchell, Stephen (2007-12-18). Bhagavad Gita: A New Translation (Kindle Locations 554-562). Potter/TenSpeed/Harmony. Kindle Edition.

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