Dear Sports Fans, the computer has a bellyache and shall be in for service. You will be given a rest from my verbiage. Once the computer is up and humming, I shall tap the keys of the keyboard again (assuming I have not expired).

Thus I leave you to the wayward antics of the boys and girls in the vaunted government. That said, I note Jacques Barzun’s words in his outstanding book From Dawn to Decadence: 1500 to the Present. He says at the opening of the book this: “The Modern Era Begins … with a revolution … the violent transfer of power and property in the name of a new idea.”

Does history repeat itself? I’m not saying but I’d hang on to your wallet and anything else of value that is not nailed down or cemented into place. As a favor to you, I will offer to hold fast your earthy valuables. The Boston Irish mob origin notwithstanding, am I not a stellar risk regarding your valuables!!! Ah, com’on now …

In the interim, read some of the blogs already posted. They are a smashing good time, I assure you. Tally Ho. Be of good cheer – laugh at the clowns center stage – especially those who do not know they are funny. If MacArthur could return, so could I.

Shalom.

“A woman’s heart should be so close to God that a man should have to chase Him to find her.”

C. S. Lewis

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How wise an observation from Mr. Lewis and how timely for us in the United States and and the Western World.

You see here in the United States we have the Left set free to do their destructive and ill-informed “best” to collapse the nation and uproot its legacy, banish its wisdom and success as soon as possible. And people thought Donald Trump was a disaster! Seems at best he was one who foretold of real disaster in the coming winds.

I have always liked women. My mother was one and quite a good one at that. She was not alone, I had aunts and a grandmother and they too were women. Indeed, I married a woman and lost her to cancer – but even today my sweetheart is also a women. Fancy that!

Actually I have heard it said that without women as mothers men would not be born. Thus far that appears to be the case. And hurrah for that biological miracle.

Does the sacred nature of child-bearing not alone raise women above men? I hope so … because it ought to do just that. We should, in a healthy society, revere women and their special calling to be birth-givers, mothers and the single, greatest and most important influence on men. Yes, women make men – well, make good and decent men, gentleman – defenders and protectors – warriors nonetheless!

As I post my gaze on the culture today and see the propensity on the quarrelsome, secular Left to impose their worn-out and historically demonstratively lousy ideas on others in their blind intentions to remake or destroy Western Civilization and its grown jewel, the United States, I harken back to Lewis and his wisdom for he knew that the health, wealth, beauty, and value of the world is not in politics but in faith, in God and in women who make of men what is the best of them.

This said, women have so benefited me and the good men I have known in my lifetime that I far prefer the sanctity and the vital importance of women to the faulty secular Leftist nonsense aimed at re-hanging the stars, re-shaping the moon, throwing the earth off its axis and filling us full of nonsense and previously discredited ideology and trite misconceptions.

Yes, I propose a far simpler, more pleasant and far more useful task and that is to renew what Lewis saw so well.

Yes, think of the gains made as God and women were once again joined and men had to love and honor both God and women in order to earn their place in the world. Imagine honorable lads and ladies whom we would admire, treasure and revere! Now that is a task well work the contemporary efforts of men and women! This might just salvage families and create a common unity that spread across religious preference, race, age, ethnicity, income levels, work status, residential communities, counties, states and even restore a bit of sanity and dignity to the funny-farm we call Washington, D.C. Think also about this – following the words of Mr. Lewis might even free women from the bondage of the slave trade of we call pornography … now wouldn’t that be a stellar emancipation!

What we can wish, we can do. So let’s do!

Shalom.

“Mary’s role in the Church is inseparable from her union with Christ and flows directly from it.”

Catechism of the Catholic Church, Paragraph 964

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Mother Mary’s place in the Church, hence in the world and in the hearts of the human person is profound. But is this presently understood and reflected in the lives of women?

Think about Mary. She carried Christ with her, gave Him birth. She stood at the foot of the Cross and suffered with Him – no more painful burden could have been asked or had. No greater show of faith can one imagine.

I have had extraordinary women in my life. My Mother gave birth to me while my nominal father deserted my Mother and me. I had an extraordinary maternal Grandmother who was like a second mother to me – so loving, so caring – I never saw her get angry. She adored babies, children and had five children of her own: my mother and four boys after my mother was born. So remarkable was my Grandmother’s place in my childhood, when she died while I was in the sixth grade I could not mention her name but that I cried even at the thought of her. As my Dear Friend Jerry Shannon says of my Grandmother: “Everyone loved Mrs. Frost” – she was that kind and warm-hearted a person.

My point is the: women are essential to us … as Mother Mary is essential to Christianity and each of us who identify as Christians.

I add that I had and extraordinary number of remarkable women in my life who, I now see, reflected the grace and love of Mother Mary.

I think of by maternal Great Grandmother who I knew as a small child, my witty and loving Great Aunt Dot (my Grandmother’s sister). I add a wonderful neighbor Mrs. Shannon – one of my Mother’s closest friends and the mother of my childhood best friend. I add also my loving aunts “Tippy” and Ginnie, my delightful wife – the petite and most pleasant and fun Sylvia who died at 29 – the victim of a cancer that had no name. I add my sweet, generous, thoughtful, loving, fun, petite and beautiful companion Phyllis-McGillis – who herself raised two fine lads without a father being present to her or her two boys … and think of my Daughter-in-Law Mary … a dedicated Mom and excellent wife who graciously welcomes me into her life, the lives of my two grandchildren. I think as well of the terrific women with whom I have maintained friendships that have lasted for years.

So why mention Mother Mary and these women in my life?

One reason only. I look about now and ask myself: are the women of today like Mother Mary and the strong, kind, fun and loving ladies that I knew so well and who, each in of their daily lives, presented Our Mother Mary to me not by name but my their pure loving heart?

I go a little further: I ask what effect has feminism had on our relationship with Mother Mary? Do we see Mother Mary in today’s woman?

If we do not then we face great jeopardy. We risk losing contact with a critical element of our Christian faith. Neither the human being, nor the Church, nor the person can prosper and grow to fullness without Mother Mary being present in the women we meet, interact with, befriend, socialize with, date or marry.

Good, loving, tender-hearted, maternal, strong, sacrificial, faithful women are indispensable to the development of children, of good men, the Church and a strong Nation.

Presently I fear we may be seeing the demise in some significant volume of the women of Mother Mary in the post-feminism era.

Perhaps it’s time we think about what exactly has been the cost of feminism. Has it separated women from Mary and if so has that not been a very costly development for us all – women, men, families, children, the culture, the Church, our peace and harmony, the Nation and our future?

Men standing alone DO NOT do well without good and faithful women – for such women mediate our strength and any good we do.

”Mother, behold your son. Son, behold your Mother.”

Shalom.

Postscript – Gentlemen, let’s make sure we are treating women with the care and dignity they deserve. Our Nation’s future depends on this as do our children, and our dignity and integrity as well is amplified when we treat ladies with the upmost respect.

Lately I have been stunned and surprised at the easy access to pornography on the internet. I have tried to understand how seemingly nice women can find themselves involved in these activities.

I have no explanation for this but the over-sexualized nature of our present culture. However, I fear we have failed women and I hope we can help them come to know they are held in the highest esteem by us and especially when they fulfill a Marian role and credit themselves with our love of, and devotion to, them as indispensable to their wellbeing and our collective welfare as a Nation.

”The most authentic thing about us is our capacity to create, to overcome, to endure, to transform, to love and to be greater than our sufferings.” (Emphasis added.)

Ben Okri

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Want to know what is the problem we have in the United States, in Western Civilization and in secular culture, and American politics today? We have stopped being first and foremost individuals, human beings. We have been collectivized.

I grew up in the post World War II world, in a city and neighborhood that was full of big families – mostly Catholic families that had lived through the Great Depression and many whose immediate ancestors journeyed to America from Ireland or Italy.

We were common workers, laborers, wage-earners. Poverty and war kept us close to one another, allowed us to watch out for one another. In a broad sense we were neighbors and friends – a group of individuals each of whom carried themselves with honor, in faith, as friends and extended family no matter their native origin prior to becoming proud Americans who loved this nation and the individual freedom it allowed – and protected and promoted!

Now we see NOT individuals, full of confidence – geared to sacrifice and caring for one another – now we have the herd of complainers who cannot act individually but need a group to pester others with this or that complaint of some “injustice.” Yes, now we have professional complainers where honorable men and women of faith, compassion, daring, fellowship and strength once stood. Before we had those who complain, we had people who just did.”

Now we have those who are professional complainers and are too busy whining to “do.” This is the way of the Democrats. They are “collective people.” They do not see individuals they see groups. They do not see a human but rather faceless people who join them in condemning others.

The Dems have no place for individuals, for the sustaining individual responsibility, for faith, or individual freedom. They divide people. They scoff at religion, individual freedoms insured in the U.S. Constitution. They look at the world the erroneous way Lenin looked at the world – humans are not valued so much as they are used, pushed around, policed, monitored, their spirits crushed and known privately as “deplorables” – to be used, not valued.

Imagine for a moment what life might be like if each and all were valued as human beings, scared individuals to be cherished and for whom government would do virtually anything to preserve each person’s value and retain all that allows a person to grow, work hard, strive to excel.

Restoring the individual – expecting each person’s excellence and strong character, personal responsibility, a life of virtue practiced by all as a matter of individual honor and pride. Imagine a nation in which people reflected what the primary Western faiths have taught us.

Tell you what – we’d be far better off, more mature, more honorable, more successful and better people and nation if we returned to being individuals endowed with all sorts of achievements waiting to be realized.

Shalom.

Postscript – Our former Democrat friends have strayed way off track. They used to value the working person, the elderly, the value of the individual person, the ill and imfirmed. They used to be deeply committed to their faith.

Now they are the Party of the privileged class, Leftist faculty sheltered from real life, the tech mavens of the easy money and global wealth sufficient to embrace all sorts of exotic “causes,” without serious cost or consequences, those that assert sweeping grievances as a substitute for work, abortionists, et al. Lost to them is the individual.

Would we welcome their fellowship? Yes, if they returned to their roots and their senses. But alas thus far they have consumed the cool-aide and are far from home and sanity. Far from “peace and love” and closer to the gulag as public policy.

Breaking News – It is reported that Professional Golfer Tiger Woods (father of small children) has had a very serious automobile crash and is in critical condition. It is also reported that some on the Left have expressed happiness because “he was a Trump supporter.” This is precisely why I wrote what I did today. The Left presents us with this – they have lost their way and act, too often, like nothing matters but their own bias and prejudice and “special” complaints and needs. Not much humanity detected in such an attitude and apparent belief.

“Man, tempted by the devil, let his trust in his Creator die in his heart and, abusing his freedom, disobeyed God’s command … All subsequent sin would be disobedience toward God and lack of trust in his goodness. (Emphasis added.)

Catechism of the Catholic Church, Paragraph 397

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Our greatest error is in not trusting in God. We routinely think we can do life without God. We act daily as if to say -“I am God.” Proof of this is seen so clearing in those mortals who govern us, those who lust for power, carve to control others. We see it habitually on the political Left, among Liberals. What a haughty bunch they are. Godless and haughty.

The notion of “wokeness” and the idea that all Caucasians have superiority over others by the mere skin color is a stunning rebuke of God and Creation – amazing evidence of an inability to TRUST in God. That primary failure is repeated and repeated and repeated again, and again, and again ad infinitem. That Dear Friends is precisely what we do over and over again. This is THE SOURCE of all of our woes – we refuse to trust God.

If there is one thing you and I might put our heart and mind, soul and self to in this lifetime it is this simple proposition: trust in God. Make that your prayer as you begin each day, many times a day and when you set yourself to sleep. Ask of God but that you trust in Him … Nothing matters more than this. As an ancillary but critical caution I suggest this: do not listen to anyone who does not manifest a trust in God.

Shalom.

“ … no one can escape the experience of suffering or the evils in nature which seem linked to the limitations proper to creatures, and above all to the question of moral evil.”

Catechism of the Catholic Church, Paragraph 7, The Fall, Section 385

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We are quite capable of evil and of moral evil. This is part of our nature – a fallen part of man and woman with hubris and natural desire, who can succumb to temptation.

St. Augustine in his Confessions acknowledged that he did not see where evil comes from but that he did realize that one’s protection from it came when with his conversion to the living God. His view was this: “the mystery of lawlessness” was clarified only in the presence of “the mystery of religion.”

It follows that we are blessed to have the example of Christ as the way to minimize or avoid evil. This be so because Christ showed us his love, love itself – love we are capable of knowing and acting upon. That said, our best way of living is to keep our eyes on Christ and tilt our ears to his words and the study of his life and teaching.

Christians – the Nation, the West and the world can ill afford to live without Christ, exist without Christians. This is so much more important in a period where Leftist in politics and the academy seek to disparage Christ and attack Christians, the Church, religion, worship, and beliefs flowing from faith. Those, knowing or unknowing, seem intent on dismissing God and in His absence follow paths that have proven in history to be utterly destructive of nations and its people.

If one seeks evil – dismiss Christ, Christians and the Churches that provide understanding, a way of life experience, and the strength and wisdom that Christianity brings.

Shalom.

Postscript – I have been surprised recently to see how readily the internet allows for access to pornography. I am actually completely puzzled by what I see and the ease with which one can access this. Evil? Well I see in this material what looks very demeaning to women and to men, and that which is both addictive and abusive in its appearance. I am saddened to see woman lend themselves to what looks like brutal abuse. If this is life without Christ, we are in for some very mean times by forsaking a relationship with God. God bless you all.

“ … the Lord embraces the way of the righteous, and the way of the wicked is lost.”

Psalm I, verse 6

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Psalm I warns us against accepting the counsel of the wicked. Likewise, it cautions us against living in the way of offenders or joining the company of scoffers.

Think about this. We are cautioned not to adhere to the wicked, nor join the offenders or those who scoff at what is good. This is, if you will – casting a large net … and putting us on notice that we must be alert and very discerning as to whom we listen to, follow and keep the company off.

Some say that religion and politics do not mix. Yet are not the instructions in the very first Psalm advising us to dismiss the counsel of the wicked, the company of those who offend the Lord and avoid joining the ranks of scoffers – those who perpetually disbelieve and routinely claim no good may be had in this life?

Do these wise admonitions guiding us to a “good life” not seek that we refute those who counsel what is wrong, false, unjust? Are we not warned to stay free of those who break the law, offend the Lord, engage in injustice and are we not told to keep our distance from those who scoff at the opportunity in this mortal life to see that what is good will prosper and prevail?

In a highly communicative culture are we not to take particular care to carefully follow only what is good and actively reject what is not? If that be the case, can we accept of those in governance who advance the abortion of the unborn child? Can we follow the counsel of those in the public square who pursue violence as a means of advancing their point of view? Are we not obliged to screen very carefully the words and conduct of those who advance this policy or that and ask of these men and women – do these who speak reflect any connection with, or understanding of, God and what the Lord seeks of us? Are we not required to avoid the voices of the godless?

Indeed taking the advice of the godless cannot be justified for all are asked to pursue what pleases the Lord and that is the acquisition of a “good life” – one that fulfills God’s plan of each of use and our place in this great Garden of Eden, God’s magnificent Creation.

In my view we face, for the first time in my life, a broad and bold public assault on the Lord and His ways by those who have seized power and broad influence and prominent presence in the public square. I think of politicians, ideologues, selfish special pleaders, those whose ways are wicked and demoralizing, those who look upon the populace as “deplorables,” the sickly egotistical ones who seek total control over others so that their views of life may displace those of God.

Yes, we have prominent people who advance the opposite of what Psalm I advises and in this make it difficult to embrace the “good life” that the Lord offers to us.

We live in serious times, life threatening times – our soul is at risk. It is best to carefully think about what you hear and how what you hear may turn you away from what is good and point you in the direction of what is precisely good’s opposite – self-destructive evil, the opposition to God. Yes, if you are not careful and stand to refute those who counsel opposition to what is good and pleasing to God then you will have lost your soul and happiness, and your dignity, and your identity will be wiped away.

Best we choose the quest to live a “good life,” one of interior peace and happiness – a life as God offers to His children … a life of righteousness and contentment.

Shalom.

“Happy the man … the Lord’s reaching is his desire … His teaching he murmurs day and night.”

Psalm I

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So you say you desire to live a “good life” – one of meaning and character, one that utilizes the fullness of your being, that lives what God has sewn within you – in your heart and in your soul … that you want your talents to be utilized for the good of others, that you seek in humility a simple and good life dedicated to others and among sound and good people who seek what you seek. You want indeed the same for your wife and your children and your parents, siblings, aunts and uncles, cousins, nieces and nephews … for all people.

Seek then the Psalms. Come to know their message, their meaning. Indeed one can know of their content and come to peace, to a discerning eye and wit and sound disposition.

In the Psalms one grows closer to what is right and pure and within our grasp … and closer to the Divine, to God, to contentment and wisdom – to the good life.

Isn’t it odd that we have the source of wisdom and truth near at hand – but we “honor” it in our neglect and hence we generate foolishness, division, folly, unnecessary hurt and invite our power crazed adversaries and our own certain delusion, decline, domination and death.

Too often we submit to the directions of fools, those who know not what a good life is. Take the leaders who lives are in utter disorder – they cannot lead who cannot live a good life. Yet, we slump along without attention to God, without the Psalms. What ignorance and idiocy we convey.

Turn your back on those who only destroy and seek what has survived the Ages. Seek what is a Good Life.

Shalom.

Postscript – I strongly recommend to you this book: The Book of Psalms by Robert Alter, simply an indispensable addition to one’s development and worthy of an honored place in your home and on your bookshelf.

“A man can be himself so long as he can be alone. If he does not love solitude, he will not love freedom …”

Arthur Schoepenhauer.

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Who among our public figures looks or acts like they can be alone, survive in a solitary life. Not many that is for sure. Ergo, our most public voices do not know freedom and are not free. If they are not free then they cannot know what freedom is … and now you know why your protected rights and the manor of living that has been the benchmark of normal and mature, sacred and healthy is under attack.

Most hatred and violent actions come from those who are not free and cannot be free because they cannot endure solitude. No, absent solitude the need to be part of a mass organization arises – for example: the Communist Party, or a racially divisive group, or one that attacks those institutions that have for decades upon decades protected our individual and collective freedom.

Those who cannot survive in solitude cannot create freedom – absent their capacity for solitude and not knowing freedom they attack the freedom of others and soon enough those who rest in solitude lose their freedom as their individual conduct is monitored by the state so as to detect anything that resembles freedom.

Those who cannot sustain in solitude cannot allow others either solitude or freedom. That is the dynamic we witness today. Those once for freedom are now in favor of less freedom for in its prerequisite (solitude) they see the danger posed to them by a free man or woman in their midst.

Shalom.

“Are you capable of risking your life for someone? Do it for Christ.”

St. John Paul II

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Ash Wednesday is one of the most substantial days in a Christian’s life. It is a day that would have us focus on a fast – a period of time in which we will deprive ourselves of something we have grown accustomed to in favor of a modest but meaningful sacrifice to do without things that comprise our regular rountine.

Of course, we fast often as to our diet, the food we consume. Yes, depriving oneself of a meal once a day or of meat once a day is a common way to re-focus us on our faith, on the sacrifice of Christ and the Martyrs but more to the point the Lenten Season asks us to align our life with Christ, with God the Father, with our faith, our Church and its teachings. Alas in Lent and commencing with Ash Wednesday, it is vitally important to ask yourself in this most troubled of times how can I deny myself of that which is untrue, unwise, antagonistic, immoral, craven, false, counter-productive, injurious, faithless and that which ruins our Nation and diminishes our sanctity?

This year it is fitting to ask how can I ignore and reject those who lie to me and to us? How can I eliminate the bitter voices of hatred and anger that abound in the media and in politics? How can I reject what is, after all, satanic in its destruction? How can I rebuke those in the public square who know far less than is necessary and engage us as those who divide us and run our country down? What TV channels can I do without? What sources of “news” can I reject? Can I close my ears to those who constantly engage in racial division or radical Leftist or anarchist views?

Friends, know this going forward in this Lenten Period – your fasting as I lay out will do more to enhance your faith and aid our Nation than a mere personal change in your diet.

We are a Nation reliant on a population that is religious, that lives its faith and hence, as for Christians, shows Christ in our public life. Is there an urgency now at the time of THIS Lenten period? Yes, there is. ‘Tis time to turn away from those who are overtly destructive of this Great Nation. You will in your overt and wise fasting be doing what public figures do not do and that is this: living your faith, showing that you are above all else the child of God, one who lives what one believes and has pledged to protect and share all with others.

Happy Ash Wednesday. This Lent walk with God and let that be the beginning of a habit that lasts day to day for years to come. Our Great Nation desperately needs faithful citizens.

Shalom.

Postscript – Want some suggestions on a Lenten diet? Give up The Washington Post, The New York Times, NBC, CBS, ABC, CNN, Celebrities, all but a few Members of the Congress, White House “Spokes-People, “Big” Government, PBS, NPR, Law Professors on TV but for one or two who seem competent and unbiased, any Liberal Professor in any area of alleged “expertise,” the Governors of New York and California, painfully unfunny Late Night TV hosts for starters and social media sites. Use your down time to learn, dive into your faith and attend to your spiritual development.

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