I'm going to continue on the bathroom theme. All the crazy rhetoric and fear is coming up into legislation that has passed in Mississippi and North Carolina. There are more states attempting to pass such "religious freedom" bills that would enshrine bigotry and bathroom gender into law. In Washington, my home state, after having bathroom freedom the law for 10 years, a legislative effort rose up to remove the freedom after the Human Rights Commission clarified the law already on the books. It failed in our legislature. Of course, now, there is an initiative effort to get it on the ballot in November. Because people are afraid.
I have a different challenge. Let's acknowledge it. People are afraid. Gender queer people are afraid to go to the bathroom because that is a place of violence and bullying for them. At a minimum, they get serious side-eye. People are afraid to let their children go into a bathroom with people they don't know, especially if they perceive higher risk. Everyone should feel safe. So, let's join the #IllGoWithYou movement!
Buy some stickers (or print them) or a pin (or make one) and become a public witness! Be there for transgender people who simply want to use the bathroom safely. Or for children. Or other adults who feel vulnerable. Let's be clear, the population that is the most prone to being abused in a bathroom is a transgender person. But students in general fear bathrooms as a place of bullying.
Market-Share to Mind-Share. Let's #StopTheHarm, #IllGoWithYou.
Today's practice is inspired by things I love. I include music from Christina Perri, a poem from Rumi, and sacred wisdom from St. Augustine along with readings from the Jewish and Christian lectionaries, the Qur'an, and the Bhagavad Gita. Today's prayer includes intercessions from the World Council of Churches. The photo is mine.
Let my heart rise up to meet mercy, my voice to meet compassion, my hands to meet action.
BIBOLOVE: Breath In, Breath Out--yum
Jar of Hearts by Christina Perri
I hear you're asking all around
If I am anywhere to be found
But I have grown too strong
To ever fall back in your arms
The Guest House by Rumi
This being human is a guest house.
Every morning a new arrival.
A joy, a depression, a meanness,
some momentary awareness comes
As an unexpected visitor.
Welcome and entertain them all!
Even if they're a crowd of sorrows,
who violently sweep your house
empty of its furniture,
still treat each guest honorably.
He may be clearing you out
for some new delight.
The dark thought, the shame, the malice,
meet them at the door laughing,
and invite them in.
Be grateful for whoever comes,
because each has been sent
as a guide from beyond.
translated by Coleman Banks
1 Peter 1:23-25
Qur'an Surah 3.110-120
Bhagavad Gita 4.7-11
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.
“We are talking about God. What wonder is it that you do not understand? If you do understand, then it is not God.”
– St. Augustine
For the oppressed and weary
Especially for #blacklivesmatter and
for the LGBTQIAP community.
For signs of despair and violence,
for those who have lost loved ones due to religious and political strife
for the conflict between the Christians and Muslims in Ambon, enduring decades of conflict
for refugees who long to return to their families and homes
for US victims of gun violence in the last 72, hours,
182 incidents, 62 killed, 120 injured
For signs of hope and peace,
for the witness of those who work towards ending violence
for those who work for greater understanding among different religions
for those who stand with the poor
for rice from fertile soil and fish from the warm sea
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.
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.
"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
The Complete Jewish Bible with Rashi Commentary
13 He shall slaughter the lamb in the place where one slaughters the sin offering and the burnt offering, in a holy place. For regarding the kohen['s service], the guilt offering is like the sin offering. It is a holy of holies.
14 The kohen shall take some of the blood of the guilt offering, and the kohen shall place it above the cartilage of the right ear of the person being cleansed, on the thumb of his right hand, and on the big toe of his right foot.
15 And the kohen shall take some of the log of oil, and pour [it] onto the kohen's left palm.
16 The kohen shall then dip his right index finger into some of the oil that is on his left palm, and sprinkle some of the oil with his index finger seven times, before the Lord.
17 And some of the remainder of the oil that is in his palm, the kohen shall place on the cartilage of the right ear of the person being cleansed, on the thumb of his right hand and on the big toe of his right foot, on [top of] the blood of the guilt offering.
18 And what is left over from the oil that is in the kohen's palm, he shall place upon the head of the person being cleansed, and the kohen shall effect atonement for him before the Lord.
19 The kohen shall then perform [the service of] the sin offering and effect atonement for the person being cleansed of his uncleanness. After this, he shall slaughter the burnt offering.
20 And the kohen shall bring up the burnt offering and the meal offering to the altar. The kohen shall thus effect atonement for him, and he shall be [completely] clean.
The Complete Jewish Bible with Rashi Commentary
If one merits a public miracle, he should offer a song to God, including in his song all the miracles that have occurred since the day the world was created, as well as the good that God wrought for Israel at the giving of the Torah. And he should say: "He Who has performed these miracles, may He do with me likewise."
1. For the Conductor. By the servant of the Lord, by David, who chanted the words of this song to the Lord on the day the Lord delivered him from the hand of all his enemies, and from the hand of Saul.
2. He said, "I love You, Lord, my strength.
3. The Lord is my rock, my fortress, and my rescuer. My God is my strength in Whom I take shelter, my shield, the horn of my salvation, my stronghold.
4. With praises I call upon the Lord, and I am saved from my enemies.
5. For the pangs of death surrounded me, and torrents of evil people terrified me.
6. Pangs of the grave encompassed me; snares of death confronted me.
7. In my distress I called upon the Lord, I cried out to my God; and from His Sanctuary He heard my voice, and my supplication before Him reached His ears.
8. The earth trembled and quaked; the foundations of the mountains shook-they trembled when His wrath flared.
9. Smoke rose in His nostrils, devouring fire blazed from His mouth, and burning coals flamed forth from Him.
10. He inclined the heavens and descended, a thick cloud was beneath His feet.
11. He rode on a cherub and flew; He soared on the wings of the wind.
12. He made darkness His concealment, His surroundings His shelter-of the dense clouds with their dark waters.
13. Out of the brightness before Him, His clouds passed over, with hailstones and fiery coals.
14. The Lord thundered in heaven, the Most High gave forth His voice-hailstones and fiery coals.
15. He sent forth His arrows and scattered them; many lightnings, and confounded them.
16. The channels of water became visible, the foundations of the world were exposed-at Your rebuke, O Lord, at the blast of the breath of Your nostrils.
17. He sent from heaven and took me; He brought me out of surging waters.
18. He rescued me from my fierce enemy, and from my foes when they had become too strong for me.
19. They confronted me on the day of my misfortune, but the Lord was my support.
20. He brought me into spaciousness; He delivered me because He desires me.
21. The Lord rewar-ded me in accordance with my righteousness; He repaid me according to the cleanliness of my hands.
22. For I have kept the ways of the Lord, and have not transgressed against my God;
23. for all His laws are before me, I have not removed His statutes from me.
24. I was perfect with Him, and have guarded myself from sin.
25. The Lord repaid me in accordance with my righteousness, according to the cleanliness of my hands before His eyes.
26. With the kindhearted You act kindly, with the upright man You act uprightly.
27. With the pure You act purely, but with the crooked You act cun- ningly.
28. For the destitute nation You save, but haughty eyes You humble.
29. Indeed, You light my lamp; the Lord, my God, illuminates my darkness.
30. For with You I run against a troop; with my God I scale a wall.
31. The way of God is perfect; the word of the Lord is pure; He is a shield to all who take refuge in Him.
32. For who is God except the Lord, and who is a rock except our God!
33. The God Who girds me with strength, and makes my path perfect.
34. He makes my feet like deers', and stands me firmly on my high places.
35. He trains my hands for battle, my arms to bend a bow of bronze.
36. You have given me the shield of Your deliverance, Your right hand upheld me; Your humility made me great.
37. You have widened my steps beneath me, and my knees have not faltered.
38. I pursued my enemies and overtook them; I did not turn back until I destroyed them.
39. I crushed them so that they were unable to rise; they are fallen beneath my feet.
40. You have girded me with strength for battle; You have subdued my adversaries beneath me.
41. You have made my enemies turn their backs to me, and my foes I cut down.
42. They cried out, but there was none to deliver them; to the Lord, but He did not answer them.
43. I ground them as the dust before the wind, I poured them out like the mud in the streets.
44. You have rescued me from the quarrelsome ones of the people, You have made me the head of nations; a nation I did not know became subservient to me.
45. As soon as they hear of me they obey me; strangers deny to me [their disloyalty].
46. Strangers wither away, they are terrified in their strongholds.
47. The Lord lives; blessed is my Rock; exalted is the God of my deliverance.
48. You are the God Who executes retribution for me, and subjugates nations under me.
49. Who rescues me from my enemies, Who exalts me above my adversaries, Who delivers me from the man of violence.
50. Therefore I will laud You, Lord, among the nations, and sing to Your Name.
51. He grants His king great salvations, and bestows kindness upon His anointed, to David and his descendants forever."
To behold God's might one should look to the heavens, to the sun, and to the Torah, from which awesome miracles and wonders can be perceived--wonders that lead the creations to tell of God's glory.
1. For the Conductor, a psalm by David.
2. The heavens recount the glory of the Almighty; the sky proclaims His handiwork.
3. Day to day speech streams forth; night to night expresses knowledge.
4. There is no utterance, there are no words; their voice is inaudible.
5. Their arc extends throughout the world; their message to the end of the earth. He set in them [the heavens] a tent for the sun,
6. which is like a groom coming forth from his bridal canopy, like a strong man rejoicing to run the course.
7. Its rising is at one end of the heavens, and its orbit encompasses the other ends; nothing is hidden from its heat.
8. The Torah of the Lord is perfect, restoring the soul; the testimony of the Lord is trustworthy, making wise the simpleton.
9. The precepts of the Lord are just, rejoicing the heart; the command of the Lord is clear, enlightening the eyes.
10. The fear of the Lord is pure, abiding forever; the judgments of the Lord are true, they are all righteous together.
11. They are more desirable than gold, than much fine gold; sweeter than honey or the drippings of honeycomb.
12. Indeed, Your servant is scrupulous with them; in observing them there is abundant reward.
13. Yet who can discern inadvertent wrongs? Purge me of hidden sins.
14. Also hold back Your servant from willful sins; let them not prevail over me; then I will be unblemished and keep myself clean of gross transgression.
15. May the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be acceptable before You, Lord, my Strength and my Redeemer.
If a loved one or relative is suffering-even in a distant place, where one is unable to help-offer this prayer on their behalf.
1. For the Conductor, a psalm by David.
2. May the Lord answer you on the day of distress; may the Name of the God of Jacob fortify you.
3. May He send your help from the Sanctuary, and support you from Zion.
4. May He remember all your offerings, and always accept favorably your sacrifices.
5. May He grant you your heart's desire, and fulfill your every counsel.
6. We will rejoice in your deliverance, and raise our banners in the name of our God; may the Lord fulfill all your wishes.
7. Now I know that the Lord has delivered His anointed one, answering him from His holy heavens with the mighty saving power of His right hand.
8. Some [rely] upon chariots and some upon horses, but we [rely upon and] invoke the Name of the Lord our God.
9. They bend and fall, but we rise and stand firm.
10. Lord, deliver us; may the King answer us on the day we call.
One who is endowed with prosperity, and whose every desire is granted, ought not be ungrateful. He should praise and thank God, recognize Him as the cause of his prosperity, and trust in Him. For everything comes from the kindness of the One Above.
1. For the Conductor, a psalm by David.
2. The king rejoices in Your strength, Lord; how greatly he exults in Your deliverance!
3. You have given him his heart's desire, and You have never withheld the utterance of his lips.
4. You preceded him with blessings of good; You placed a crown of pure gold on his head.
5. He asked of You life, You gave it to him-long life, forever and ever.
6. His glory is great in Your deliverance; You have placed majesty and splendor upon him.
7. For You make him a blessing forever; You gladden him with the joy of Your countenance.
8. For the king trusts in the Lord, and in the kindness of the Most High-that he will not falter.
9. Your hand will suffice for all Your enemies; Your right hand will find those who hate You.
10. You will make them as a fiery furnace at the time of Your anger. May the Lord consume them in His wrath; let a fire devour them.
11. Destroy their offspring from the earth, their descendants from mankind.
12. For they intended evil against You, they devised evil plans which they cannot execute.
13. For You will set them as a portion apart; with Your bowstring You will aim at their faces.
14. Be exalted, O Lord, in Your strength; we will sing and chant the praise of Your might.
Every person should pray in agony over the length of the exile, and our fall from prestige to lowliness. One should also take vows (for self-improvement) in his distress.
1. For the Conductor, on the ayelet hashachar, a psalm by David.
2. My God, my God, why have You forsaken me! So far from saving me, from the words of my outcry?
3. My God, I call out by day, and You do not answer; at night-but there is no respite for me.
4. Yet You, Holy One, are enthroned upon the praises of Israel.
5. In You our fathers trusted; they trusted and You saved them.
6. They cried to You and were rescued; they trusted in You and were not shamed.
7. And I am a worm and not a man; scorn of men, contempt of nations.
8. All who see me mock me; they open their lips, they shake their heads.
9. But one that casts [his burden] upon the Lord-He will save him; He will rescue him, for He desires him.
10. For You took me out of the womb, and made me secure on my mother's breasts.
11. I have been thrown upon You from birth; from my mother's womb You have been my God.
12. Be not distant from me, for trouble is near, for there is none to help.
13. Many bulls surround me, the mighty bulls of Bashan encircle me.
14. They open their mouths against me, like a lion that ravages and roars.
15. I am poured out like water, all my bones are disjointed; my heart has become like wax, melted within my innards.
16. My strength is dried up like a potsherd, and my tongue cleaves to my palate; You set me in the dust of death.
17. For dogs surround me, a pack of evildoers enclose me; my hands and feet are like a lion's prey.
18. I count all my limbs, while they watch and gloat over me.
19. They divide my garments amongst them; they cast lots upon my clothing.
20. But You, Lord, do not be distant; my Strength, hurry to my aid!
21. Save my life from the sword, my soul from the grip of dogs.
22. Save me from the lion's mouth, as You have answered me from the horns of wild beasts.
23. I will recount [the praises of] Your Name to my brothers; I will extol You amidst the congregation.
24. You that fear the Lord, praise Him! Glorify Him, all you progeny of Jacob! Stand in awe of Him, all you progeny of Israel!
25. For He has not despised nor abhorred the entreaty of the poor, nor has He concealed His face from him; rather He heard when he cried to Him.
26. My praise comes from You, in the great congregation; I will pay my vows before those that fear Him.
27. Let the humble eat and be satisfied; let those who seek the Lord praise Him-may your hearts live forever!
28. All the ends of the earth will remember and return to the Lord; all families of nations will bow down before You.
29. For sovereignty is the Lord's, and He rules over the nations.
30. All the fat ones of the earth will eat and bow down, all who descend to the dust shall kneel before Him, but He will not revive their soul.
31. The progeny of those who serve Him will tell of the Lord to the latter generations.
32. They will come and relate His righteousness-all that He has done-to a newborn nation.
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.
a. Isaiah 40:6b–8
Quran Surah 3.102-109
Quran: A Simple English Translation
110 You are indeed the best community that has ever been brought forth for [the good of] mankind. You enjoin what is good, and forbid what is evil, and you believe in God. If the People of the Book had also believed, it would have surely been better for them. Some of them are true believers, but most of them are disobedient.
111 They can do you very little harm; if they come out to fight you, they will show you their backs; then they shall not be helped— 112 abasement shall attend them wherever they are found, unless they make a covenant with God or with man. They have incurred God’s wrath and have been utterly humbled, because they have persistently disbelieved in God’s signs and killed prophets unjustly. This resulted from their disobedience and their habit of transgression.
113 Yet they are not all alike. Of the People of the Book there are some who stand by their covenant; they recite the word of God during the night and prostrate themselves before Him, 114 who believe in God and the Last Day, who enjoin justice and forbid evil and vie with each other in good works. These are righteous men 115 and they will not be denied [the reward] for whatever good deeds they do: God knows the righteous.
116 As for those who deny the truth, neither their possessions nor their children shall avail them in the least against God. They will be inmates of the Fire. They will remain there for ever; 117 that which they spend in pursuit of the life of this world is like a biting frosty blast which smites the harvest of a people who have wronged themselves, and destroys it. God is not unjust to them; they are unjust to their own souls.
118 Believers, do not take outsiders as your intimate friends, they will spare no effort to harm you. They love to see you suffer; their hatred is evident from the words which fall from their mouths. But what their hearts conceal is far worse. We have made Our signs clear to you; will you not understand?
119 It is you who love them, but they do not love you; you believe in all the revealed Books. When they meet you, they say, ‘We believe,’ but when they are alone, they bite their fingertips with rage. Say, ‘Die of rage!’ God is aware of what your hearts contain.
120 Whenever something good happens to you, it grieves them; but when evil befalls you, they rejoice. If you persevere and fear God, their designs will never harm you in the least: God encompasses all that they do.
Khan, Maulana Wahiduddin; Goodword (2013-12-11). Quran: A Simple English Translation (Goodword ! Koran) (Kindle Locations 1034-1052). Goodword Books. Kindle Edition.
Bhagavad Gita 4.7-11
Whenever righteousness falters
and chaos threatens to prevail,
I take on a human body
and manifest myself on earth.
In order to protect the good,
to destroy the doers of evil,
to ensure the triumph of righteousness,
in every age I am born.
Whoever knows, profoundly,
my divine presence on earth
is not reborn when he leaves
the body, but comes to me.
Released from greed, fear, anger,
absorbed in me and made pure
by the practice of wisdom, many
have attained my own state of being.
However men try to reach me,
I return their love with my love;
whatever path they may travel,
it leads to me in the end.
Mitchell, Stephen (2007-12-18). Bhagavad Gita: A New Translation (Kindle Locations 562-569). Potter/TenSpeed/Harmony. Kindle Edition.