Musings of the Chronologically Challenged™ Fourth Generation
Sunday, August 22, 2004
In the past weeks of computer confusion and personal chaos, I have fallen far behind in clearing my Inbox. Yesterday I began the long ordeal of scanning, reading, and/or deleting backed up emails. Do you believe there are only coincidences? Well, you can call it a coincidence that I came upon the following from John Two-Hawks' July newsletter, but it struck a special chord in me, considering some bloggers' trials and tribulations over the last couple of weeks. It's been really tough on some of them. I hope they read this excerpt and it sparks something in them, as it did in me. ~B. Indigo
Let us give thanks....
Many of you are likely familiar with the 'Traditions' CD, in which I collaborated with premier Celtic composer and musician, Manach. Manach, who is also known as Seamus Byrne, lives a contemplative, monastic life in the Wicklow Mountains of Ireland. To put it simply, he is a monk. His community has a creed which is the focus for their lives and spiritual contemplation. It is - "To see the goodness of God in all things." Anyone who has spent any time with Manach will tell you that the man embodies this creed. Many times in life, it can be difficult to find a blessing. Clouds of despair or trouble can hang over us, overshadowing our hopes and even our happiness. Yes, that's right, sometimes life can just plain suck! I can tell you that after having been on tour with Manach for a few weeks, I often find myself wanting to be a better person. It seems that little irritations don't bother me as much, and I find myself wanting to be kind even to people who drive me bananas! Manach is truly a special human being. Without really trying, a friend like Manach can open your eyes to a blessing you didn't see before.
I have a painting in my home which is entitled "Entering the Spirit World". In the painting, a plains Indian man is crossing the river that divides the physical world from the Spirit World. Throughout this piece of art, there are several images which are hidden deeply, so deeply that if I didn't tell you there were hidden images, you would never know. It amazes me to watch someone look right at a hidden image and still not see it. Life is the same. Often the answer to a problem, or a beautiful blessing is right before our eyes, yet we can't see it. Then someone like Manach comes along, and provides a hint and suddenly it comes into view. So when the dark clouds roll in, and life just plain sucks, seek a friend who can help reveal the silver lining in those gray clouds. It will be good medicine for your soul to find the hidden blessings which show us 'the goodness of God in all things'....
In the spirit of mending the sacred hoop of the nations of the world,
Your Oglala Lakota brother & friend,
BEN STEIN WRITES HIS LAST E! ONLINE
Perhaps his best yet
I no longer think Hollywood stars are terribly important. They are uniformly pleasant, friendly people, and they treat me better than I deserve to be treated. But a man or woman who makes a huge wage for memorizing lines and reciting them in front of a camera is no longer my idea of a shining star we should all look up to.
A real star is the soldier of the 4th Infantry Division who poked his head into a hole on a farm near Tikrit, Iraq. He could have been met by a bomb or a hail of AK-47 bullets. Instead, he faced an abject Saddam Hussein and the gratitude of all of the decent people of the world.
A real star, the kind who haunts my memory night and day, is the U.S. soldier in Baghdad who saw a little girl playing with a piece of unexploded ordnance on a street near where he was guarding a station. He pushed her aside and threw himself on it just as it exploded. He left a family desolate in California and a little girl alive in Baghdad.
The stars who deserve media attention are not the ones who have lavish weddings on TV but the ones who patrol the streets of Mosul even after two of their buddies were murdered and their bodies battered and stripped for the sin of trying to protect Iraqis from terrorists.
We put couples with incomes of $100 million a year on the covers of our magazines. The noncoms and officers who barely scrape by on military pay but stand on guard in Afghanistan and Iraq and on ships and in submarines and near the Arctic Circle are anonymous as they live and die.
Read Ben Stein's entire article here. It spotlights Americans who are the real stars of our nation and tells of his learning what the important things in life really are. According to Mr. Stein, having dinner in a Hollywood restaurant is not one of them. He ends his essay with a quote from the real JFK. A good one to remember. ~B. Indigo
Christ a Democrat? No Way!
Written by Kevin Stone
Sunday, August 22, 2004