Saturday, May 20, 2017


PERSONAL REFLECTION : I came across this 'preaching' video the other day. That may be enough to make one not want to look further. "Preaching" has become such a negative force in many ways and places, being either irrelevant or humanly divisive. The discovery of this video is very personal to me for it is the 'teaching person' in my original religious heritage(from which fate compelled a separation) who seemed to have the most specific transforming influence on me of anyone. He seemed, more than three decades, ago to have a 'Bible' message that transcended what had been emphasized to me in the years before. I 'heard' something different but timeless from him.

I've not had communication with Landon Saunders since those influential days when his teaching emphasis lead me in turn to other influential voices far outside my heritage. I've wondered since those days if I'd still hear Landon as one who speaks with the same transformative kind of words as I heard then? I'm not disappointed as I watch this video. He may not say things the way I would now but I am not embarrassed to recommend any person to hear this in its context of a 'church of Christ' liberal arts Universtiy. It makes me proud that my original heritage produced such a person with such preaching words. I'm sure his well chosen words would do no harm to anyone and just may bring something that can help guide some others as his message did me way back when.

I keep in mind Landon is speaking to the very church folks in which I was born , raised and was a minister for until mid life. When I hear him now( he and I both are old men) I have confidence he is doing a good thing for those in my beloved 'church of Christ' heritage. This is very refreshing to me.

Note: The only thing that I would add is that 'loving neighbors' seems to insist that we have a keen desire that any persons or groups be just as valued by and equal under the law as we who are more privileged. This means an interest and an outward stance that goes beyond just our personally treating all with mutuality and respect whom we actually encounter. That is an interest and goal that all persons and groups would become as protected, made as safe and have opportunities as any in the mainstream are.

Friday, May 19, 2017


    James Comey, Former director of the F.B.I.

    I suspect this is a man, and trained experienced professional,  who tries to do the right thing.  I would not speculate what this turning of the Presidency  will be. But it seems like something has legally developed that  no amount of bullying or name calling will be effective, even for a president. Mr. Comey  appears to have stood up to the president when that is what his job description required. I hope there are many more such people scattered around in high places ..integrity it's called.


Image may contain: 1 person, suitSomething very important and very American I think happened today. Our president(from illness, ignorance or malevolence?) , with the power the office gives, had been able to use the nation, world and our laws and institutions as a toy for his own personal whims. It appeared nothing could stop the horrible train wreck from reaching its destination.

Now with the unexpected and timely appointment of a special prosecutor even the president has hit a wall that every human must hit in our own way: The reality that there is some impersonal law or restriction that is far bigger than our personal ego and will. This in a very rich sense can be a primary religious or spiritual experience. It is how genuine humility is formed in the human personality.

This event today gives the nation and the president a chance to return to solid ground which had been far left behind for months. I fear Mr. Trump is not interested in or has value for real solid ground but instead chooses time and again to live in in his own untrue constructions of reality. And carry many others with him.

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Hopefully this sobering but necessary kind of process is one every American and every human can learn from. This 'hitting the wall' is a fundamental nature of our personal and collective human situation.

We can be grateful for the one who had the political will to make this personal decision - Deputy Attorney General Rod J. Rosenstein and for Robert S. Mueller III , the special prosecutor, who seems very prepared by life and training to take on this important task for the nation. He is a professional in that important sense of being ethically disciplined, something tragically missing in President Trumps character. He surely deserves our support and prayers as the nation seeks to find grounded stability. We were likely headed for something worse than most of us have let ourselves imagine.

There can be little doubt that it is the steady professional 'best and changing truth' reporting by our national major news outlets and papers that have been instrumental in this happening. The 'mainstream media' in its imperfections has kept before us the issues of Russia involvement in our free elections and the dynamics involved in the president firing James Comey, head of the F.B.I. Without a free and straight shooting press such turns toward greater national truth would not happen when powers such as the white house or other would seek to cloud it or cover it up.

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