People with advantages are loath to believe that they just happen to be people with advantages.  They come … to define themselves inherently worthy of what they possess; they come to believe themselves ‘naturally elite’ … imagine their possessions and their privileges as natural extensions of their own elite status.  (Emphasis added.)

C. Wright Mills, in The Power Elite

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You don’t have to be a genius to figure out that we face today “a Pharisee problem.” Indeed you have to be either dumb as a doorknob, terminally dishonest or transfigured to the state of being Mills describes to miss our present trouble.

The trouble?  There are the self-acclaiming “elites” and the rest of us – the Hillarian “deployable.”  On the one side: the Washington establishment, the politicians who take permanent root in D.C., the federal bureaucrats, the lobbyists, liberal think-tankers, the press, the media, the entertainment celebrities, and perpetually confused university eggheads (master of small things and the obvious), Democrats devoted exclusively to politics and retaining power, and dictating to others, and – of course – the “royal” judiciary.  Pharisees, all!!!

This, Friends, is the essence of Trump and the commoners vs. the self-designated “elites.”

Yes, without Trump we live with the elite mantra: “all pigs are equal, some pigs are more equal than others.”  This is why the entrenched “Pelosies,” and Schumers, and media- types raise bloody hell when they find their privileged status is exposed, that they all comprise one entangled privileged class that shares debate questions, and reports only what “their team” desires – and the devil with the common person and national interest.

No, it is only the privilege of the “special people” that matters to the “special people.” This is how the VA fails to care for it patients, jobs are exported willy-nilly, the middle class is forgotten, and offense is taken when citizens dare to repudiate the arrogrance of the elites.

For the common man and woman – being an American matters, having a faith matters. Being “special” does not.

The Curse of the Pharisees – conjures up: housecleaning, term limits, and rejection of those so used to the advantages of power.

The “anointed” know no commonsense lest they become common.  Humility is beyond their reach.  Godlessness, you see, places humility out-of-reach.  They see themselves as so much more.  Balderdash!!!

Shalom.

The voice of the parasite uses your own beliefs, formed through domestication and attachment, to hold power over you by placing conditions on your own self-love and self-acceptance.

Don Miguel Ruiz, Jr., in The Mastery of Self

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We often find ourselves dominated by the ideas and demands of others, particularly our family of origin and our parents … more so now by mindless, unavoidable mas media and mass communication (each scrubbed of either faith or wisdom).

These sources create a parasite within – a negative voice that measures us and our conduct and thoughts and aspirations harshly against them.  Great personal discord follows.

The counterbalance to the parasite is the ally – the voice within that seeks what is good, and you, true, eternal, compassionate, just, loving, full and whole – a voice that brings contentment, balance, happiness and a sense of integrity.

Ally vs. Parasite.  That is your challenge. Most around you never engage the ally – electing to be led by the parasite – the voices and demands of incomplete, damaged and damaging people and the unhinged secular culture we occupy.

I have been, by the grace of God, raised by those who did not get washed up in the voice of a culture, or the demands of others.  My family had this orientation: be who God made you to be – go forth and find out who that is.

I walk and live with an ally.  Often I encounter the parasite within others.  Beware.

Shalom.

We should know that we are gods.  If we think like gods we become like gods, if we think like demons we become like demons.

The Words of a Headmaster of a Hindu School for Religious Scholars

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Suspended.

We are suspended between what is good, and what is not.  Such a plight presents a heart-felt tension on a daily basis.

My life on a mountain ridge is peaceful.  There is open space, wide and endless skies, a new sunrise each morning with colors and streams of light that are never the same from day-to-day.  In the evening, sunsets – each with their own shadows and hues.  And there is the wind – sometimes it howls, and other times it has a gentle voice, a soft and comforting voice of a sweet and lovely lady.

I live away for the crowds and the strife that was my life, my way of being.

As a lawyer I fought.  It was so easy.  I knew combat from a childhood “on the wrongs side of the tracks.”  We all knew that for we all held the short straw and others held us in contempt.

Lately I have realized that kneeling in preparation to receive the Body of Christ is the only thing I do each day that offers me the profession of humility – the declaration of my natural state, by actual state of being.  Suspended between the gods and demons, kneeling I speak the very essence of reality.

Suspended between gods and demons.  In the quiet of the ridge, I am close to God.  In this, I love and value life and others more deeply.  Finally, I know the blessing of love.  Yet, suspended I still remain, hoping that the demons depart …

Shalom.

 

Surgery was a success.  Total knee replacement.  No pain killers needed.  In rehab – things going well.  Learned I have strong bones and a high pain threshold.  Interesting.

# # #

” … the god of this world has blinded the minds of the unbelievers, to keep them from seeing the light of the gospel, of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God.

2 Cor 4:4

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Last Monday while in the hospital awaiting a late morning surgery, I was asked several times by nurses if I had fasted as required and each time I was asked when I last ate or drank anything, and I replied “6:50 p.m. on Sunday.”

Just prior to surgery the anaesthetist asked me that same questions.  My response did not vary.

However my friend Marty who drove me to the hospital added, “He had Communion this morning.”  The doctor turned sort of pale.  “When?” he asked.  “About 6 a.m.,” was the reply.  “We have to reschedule to a later time today,” said the Doctor.

I apologized for the inconvenience.  I felt embarrassed.  I felt like an idiot for not thinking of the Communion offering as “food.”  A few hours of humbling silence followed.  I thought, I am a lawyer, how could I not see that issue?

In those hours of waiting I realized that years ago I would have seen the Communion offering as simply a wheat product.  But not now, not now as I routinely live … and believe.

My blindness to wheat was actually a proclamation of the sight of belief that I had acquired … quitely, earnestly over years of my conversion to Catholicism and my many, many days of attending Mass, and all that I experienced in the Mass, in my life and in my faith.

My faith had blossomed.  My sight had replaced the blindness that is of this world.

It is so very funny, strange, special how God delivers us and when He does.

How grateful I am for the sight I have been given.  I was blind and now I see!

Shalom.

Have knee surgery tomorrow.  I am likely to take some days off before I return to writing.  Enjoy each day.  Find peace.

How be it we speak wisdom among them that are perfect: yet not the wisdom of this world, nor of the princes of this world, that come to nought; but we speak the wisdom of God in mystery, even the hidden wisdom, which God ordained before the world … (Emphasis added.)

1 Cor 2: 6,7

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Listening to people and hearing what they say, and seeing what they do – often seeing their outrage expressed and worry exhibited – in this I conclude: they cannot see the wisdom of God in mystery.  Yes, this seems our state at-large, an all too often testimony.

Yet, then I receive an email, see something that stabilizes and inspires, have a conversation that witnesses God, God’s wisdom and the mystery.

Today I heard from my friend Sarah – wife of a husband who is also my friend and mother of two wonderful young woman … each accomplished and delightful.

Sarah wrote to tell me of her family and, as always, there is joy in hearing from her, or her husband, and sharing in the news of their lives and that of their two daughters.  But in this email there was clear evidence of the wisdom of God in mystery.

What do I mean?

On the eve of a knee operation, I am staying with my friend Marty.  And in Sarah’s letter she sent obituaries of mother who died on January 1 and of her father who predeceased her mother.

It was an act of privileged inclusion and intimacy to be welcomed into her family and her life. Such an honor.

Sarah’s mother was a beautiful women, a nurse whose name was Anita.  She was born on September 25. Herein “the wisdom of God’s mystery.”

You see these facts spoke to me in a personal and eternal way.  My deceased wife’s birthday was September 25.  My Dear Friend Marty’s wife’s name was Anita and she was a nurse.

In Sarah’s thoughtful and generous openness, words conveyed “the wisdom of God’s mystery.”  In her love and kindness, Anita and Sylvia lived this day with Marty and with me.

Never live in the flat dimension of godlessness.  To do so is to miss “the wisdom of God in mystery.”  Thank you, Sarah.

Shalom.

… imagery can be interpreted as … psychological; for it is possible to observe, in the earliest stages of the development of the infant, symptoms of a dawning “mythology” of a state beyond the vicissitudes of time.

Joseph Campbell, in The Hero of a Thousand Faces

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I remember one of my first lectures when I entered a year of monastic life in the mountains of Colorado.  The speaker, an experienced Catholic priest, told us this: never lose touch with imagination.

Imagery.  Campbell tells us infants show signs of having a natural state of mind that exceeds the “vicissitudes of time” – that is, that accesses the mystery of life that has been recorded by varied humans, in varied cultures over the entire stretch of human history.

Oh, if that natural state were present in America and Western Culture today!  But alas, we are secularized and our ignorance is displayed in ideologies that bring us to ruin – personal and collective.

I get emails today from friends I have known over the years and with whom I have retained kind relationship.  The ones I refer to are in a twitter, a panic – turned to fear and frantic language; to wit:” Trump is a liar and those who support him are fascists, crazy, demonic, etc.”

Mind you, these are emails from people with college degrees who have cash in hand and have done well financially.  I note that they lack the state of being that brings them beyond the vicissitudes of time.  They have been sufficiently secularized, their imagination crushed and their range of experience boiled down to less than that of an infant.

These are brittle and sadly limited people.  Fear grips them.  Panic is near, and hatred within reach.  Resentment and anger has replaced calm and optimism.

When the Catholic Mass is said and the Body and Blood of Christ is consecrated the priest says “Et Verbum caro factum est.”  (And the Word was made flesh.)  This is the experience of apotheosis – an exaltation to divine rank … making what seems but one thing, yet another more glorious than our mere human perception thought it to be.  Imagination.  

We have lost the capacity to imagine, to access and experience what is Divine, Eternal, Real, beyond the vicissitudes of time.  We have been dumbed-down and where hope was once known hatred, panic, anger, antagonism has taken its place.

By the way, I sadly count those who offer attacks in emails as casualties of secularism and dismiss their “views” accordingly. Education notwithstanding they are lost … lost to the mystery, converted to all that is material, now – lost to Truth and the long yesterday of the human story.

We live very poorly today in the West… and one wonders if those who wish our death and destruction live closer to imagination than we do?   At the same time it seems the case that some among us, without imagination, pose a danger all their own.

Shalom.

… the mind that withdraws from gossip, useless news, potboiler novels, and surfing the Internet will have much more time and energy for God, and for praying, readingthinking, and listening to and caring for other people. (Emphasis added.)

Fr. Hugh Feiss, O.S.B., in Essential Monastic Wisdom

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Fr. Feiss has a very relevant and useful point for today.  I add but one caveat to what he says.  What he prescribes does not allow only listening to and caring for others – but rather listening to the quiet voice of self within you and caring for yourself so you might be of maximum wisdom, help and guidance to others.

Let’s face it from high court to kindergarten, and at all junctures between heaven and hell, the disordered, selfish, wrong and malevolent liberals and Leftists have corrupted this culture, abandoned truth and made a mess of simple public discussion.

The first step toward sanity is to disengage from the “house organs” of Leftist nonsense – popular sources that echo their foolishness.  Yes, there is a monastic wisdom that is wisely invoked today.

In the ageless separation that Fr. Feiss describes one can read and think, engage timeless wisdom and embrace Truth once again.  Doing so will bring confidence and vital knowledge to you – with that, liberals and the Left can be put to the test and shame they deserve – clueless clowns that they are.

The fact of the matter is this: it does not benefit to engage disordered and hateful children in debate or conversation.  To do so is the epitome of “wasting one’s time.”  As they say, there is no reason to try to teach a pig to sing, it is useless and annoys the pig.

Fortunately the liberals and the Left are louder than they are large in number. Our failure has been that we have not attacked them head-on.  We have debated as if they pose arguments and points of view that justify conversation.  Wrong. They do not.

Think about it: abortion is child sacrifice, countries require defensible borders, there are only two genders, marriage is between a man and a woman, habitual deficit spending ends in economic disaster, free market economics produces a higher standard of living and greater individual wealth and socialism and Communism do not, religion and faith matter, and there is a God and He is neither dead nor irrelevant.

Shalom.

If you find this post useful, share it with others.

Observation – Time to put the Judiciary in its due Constitutional place – which is limited not superior to the Executive.  If we let the matter stand – we will have government by and of ill-informed, biased Federal Judiciary and chaos, and the Nation’s collapse will result.

By the way, President Trump should pull his pending nominee for the Supreme Court in favor of Federal Judge Pryor. Why? The pending guy is not independent – he likes to be “liked” and we already have at least two such individuals on the Court.  Judges have to have more maturity and courage than needing to be “liked.”

Tomorrow – Polis and ekklesia: learning from the Greeks.   

When woke in the woods and in the dark and the cold of the night he’d reach out to touch the child sleeping beside him.

Cormac McCarthy, in The Road

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A father reaches out to touch his young son in the opening line of a story about a father’s love and duty to shepherd his son in post-apocalyptic America.

Constraints.  Shepherds have constraints.  Fathers, too.

With constraints comes identity and meaning.  In constraint is form and purpose. And other and self – true self in the constraint of another.

Rather puts the rest to selfishness and legal and political claims and the insistence on “equality” so often in demands that distort the value of self and other, and kill both.

The 19th century French sociologist Emile Durkheim led us to this truth: the fewer constraints one has the greater the risk of suicide.  What is true of man and truer yet of society.  When anything goes, everything goes!

Without bonds and obligations, relationships that are honored – death cometh.

I am often struck my how clueless public figures are and especially those who comment on the daily news.  None seems to see what is clearly in front of them.  One might ask but a simple question – if a book about the love of a father for a son in post-apocalyptic America can be a best seller and a motion picture, what does that say about us, about today?

When we do NOT wonder what that says, what dies that say???

Durkheim observed that those who had least demanding religious obligations committed suicide more than others with a religion that expected more of them. Likewise those in families were less likely to commit suicide than those alone. Those married least likely than those not married.  Those with children least likely than those without children.

Perhaps, someone might inform Supreme Court Justice Kennedy and his colleagues and then school the Left, the Democrats, feminists, abortionists, the media, Hollywood, Ivy Tower types and the other “deconstructionists” who seem hell-bent to destroy time tested institutions, mores and identities that save us from self-destruction.  

In the deep glens … all things were older than man and they hummed of mystery.

Cormac McCarthy

This from the last sentence in The Road.

Shalom.

A little autobiography sometimes helps.  

In this short story I make this point: our life journey comes to us.  We do not invite its content, and we surely do not design it.  As I have said before we are recipients.  We receive life without having petitioned or plead for it.  To live it fully we must learn from all that comes our way.  This is especially true with hardships.  They must be faced, experienced in truth and integrated wholly.  It is absolutely indispensable that the events of our life be fully taken in – and this question always asked: what am I to learn from this?  Rest assured that there is no hardship that does not, when it is faced, grow us in wisdom, understanding, insight, character and confidence.

# # # 

Estrangement has both color and sound.

Bobby Sylvester

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His small hand reached for the doorknob and turned it slowly so as not to wake her.  Still not old enough for school.  Toe to top, his fair-haired head barely surpassed the keyhole.

Gently and quietly he opened the door just enough so he might enter.

There she was: his Mom in sleep – the shades drawn, a darkened room in midday. A child only, he knew his mother was ill and that she found sleep preferable to day.

Young as he was he met estrangement without knowing its name.  His Mom was sick, and love was stifled and inert.

Remembering years later, his heart knew the color estrangement.  It was the color of drawn shades – a dark and light-less room that turned all things gray and black … Its sound was the sound of nothing, a near-dead silence.

When trauma meets a child’s eyes, either the sorrow grows to wisdom, or fleeing the arrow that it might not pierce his heart he is wounded all the same and in his failed flight his exile is certain and confirmed.  In flight he will not know love – neither in its absence nor presence. In this a sentence too painful to await a natural death.

Shalom.

A society is a group of persons bound together … by a principle of unity … an assembly that is … spiritual … each man … rightly owes loyalty to the communities of which he is a part and respect to those in authority who have charge of the common good. (Emphasis added.)

Catechism of the Catholic Church, Paragraph 1880

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The godlessness of the American Left and its fellow travelers is disgusting. Simply stated, the Left has been devoted to dividing and deconstructing America for too many decades. Their handiwork has weakened us and made us very vulnerable.

Their current on-going efforts to “delegitimize” President Trump, his new administration and forestall the effective functioning of the U.S. Congress and the Executive Branch is shameful.  Indeed, these “Obstructionists” are nothing if not ill-tempered, spoiled little children.

In particular, I think of the Democratic Party of the Left, The New York Times, The Washington Post, CNN, MSNBC, Hollywood and many of its celebrities and tycoons, college professors, self-proclaimed political and policy experts, an a-sundry collection of radical feminists, racial organizations, abortionists, anarchists, street demonstrators (paid and unpaid), political candidates and their operatives, elected officials and those who fund them.

Simply stated, they ought to think about the above and put themselves to the measure of what it says.  Better yet, the rest of us ought to make the above the requirement we impose on anyone who seeks our political support or desires that we might listen to them.

If they do not meet the standard above – they are persona non grata.

Shalom.

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