Monthly Archives: April 2017

Prayer is work, too.

Saint Benedict ran a monastery. He ran into the problem that many monks wanted to spend all their time praying and studying, and not do any of the dirty manual labor — housekeeping, tending livestock, working in the fields — needed to keep the place going. So he adopted and enforced the motto, Laborare est orare — “Work is prayer.”

In excess, religious study can become a drain on society’s resources. Many Haredi, or “ultra-orthodox,” men in Israel want to spend all their time in religious study instead of earning any money. (Article.) Meanwhile, a majority of them live on welfare, with eight to fifteen children. This places a burden on the remainder of society that that economy can no longer bear.

What about me?
Continue reading Prayer is work, too.

Reasons to seek prosperity

Reasons to seek prosperity

At any given moment, it may help me to have an actual reason to seek prosperity.  As my moods and POV change from day to day, however, a reason that I may have believed in one day, may not be credible the next:  “I’m not feelin’ it.”  So I may do well to have several reasons, different ones of which may be credible on different days. Continue reading Reasons to seek prosperity

The Twelve Steps

THE TWELVE STEPS OF ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS

1. We admitted we were powerless over alcohol — that our lives had become unmanageable.

2. Came to believe that a Power greater than ourselves could restore us to sanity.

3. Made a decision to turn our will and our lives over to the care of God as we understood Him.

4. Made a searching and fearless moral inventory of ourselves.

5. Admitted to God, to ourselves, and to another human being the exact nature of our wrongs.

6. Were entirely ready to have God remove all these defects of character.

7. Humbly asked Him to remove our shortcomings.

8. Made a list of all persons we had harmed, and became willing to make amends to them all.

9. Made direct amends to such people wherever possible, except when to do so would injure them or others.

10. Continued to take personal inventory and when we were wrong promptly admitted it.

11. Sought through prayer and meditation to improve our conscious contact with God, as we understood Him, praying only for knowledge of His will for us and the power to carry that out.

12. Having had a spiritual awakening as the result of these Steps, we tried to carry this message to alcoholics, and to practice these principles in all our affairs.

Copyright A.A. World Services, Inc.

(Originally posted 11/30/13.)
on air talent, talk show host, radio talk show, the homeless blogger

“By the time they start school, for some children it’s already too late.”

This article by Nick Morrison originally appeared in Forbes on 11/30/16, but for some reason is almost impossible to access now.  I reproduce here below the cached version; if there are legal repercussions, I’ll face them when the time comes.

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By The Time They Start School, For Some Children It’s Already Too Late

Continue reading “By the time they start school, for some children it’s already too late.”

A case of precognition

At age 12, Walt Manis had a vision that he would someday be a father, and have a little girl, and name her Chloe.

He eventually married a neighbor and childhood sweetheart, Annie, ten years his younger.  They were unable to conceive, and eventually chose to adopt.

When they met the woman who would become the birth mother of their child, Walt saw that she bore a striking resemblance to the little girl he had seen in his dream.  The mother informed them that the name she herself had chosen for the baby was Chloe.

Continue reading A case of precognition

Alcoholism basics

(A message I sent family on 26 April 2006.)

Disease, or sin?

To the best of my knowledge, the “disease theory of alcoholism” began with Dr. Robert Silkworth, at the time of St. Thomas Hospital in Akron, Ohio, coincident with the beginnings of A.A. “Dr. Bob” referred to the condition as an “allergy”; for whatever reason, these folks’ bodies respond to this substance differently than others’ do.

This theory and its ramifications are, today, largely taken for granted throughout the scientific world. Whatever the disease’s cause, behavioral strategies are needed, too, if the subject is to manage the disease and live a normal life. The same is just as true of diabetes or near-sightedness or hay fever.

The competing view, that drinking problems reflect sin or some kind of moral deficiency, still has its grip on the popular mind. The predicaments that problem drinkers create for themselves and for others, are bad enough in and of themselves without the added burden of this stigma. My late father insisted until his last lucid day, that it was all a question of “will power.” I remember visiting Mom at home sometime prior to 1990, and finding on the bookshelf different books by Hazen G. Werner, an Ohio Methodist bishop whom my father fervently admired, and finding certain passages that my father had marked wherein the author discounted the disease theory and blamed it all instead on, as it were, sin. I shook my head at the untold, needless damage such words do.
Continue reading Alcoholism basics

Don’t Quit! How to Be Happy at a Crappy Job

If at all possible, never, ever, allow yourself to become completely jobless.  My doing that was the worst financial decision I’ve every made in my life.  It was very, very costly.

I don’t know if it’s directly related to how I became homeless, but for sure, I never mean to do it again.

Continue reading Don’t Quit! How to Be Happy at a Crappy Job

Accepting revulsion 1: Wetting the bed

Miscellaneous notes about accepting bad feelings.

[First in a series.]

Vladimir Putin purportedly has a video of Donald Trump directing two whores to pee on a bed that Barack Obama slept in.

Some people think it’s scandalous.

I think it’s hilarious.

Some days ago, I had a mind to post on Facebook that Trump himself is the bed wetter.

Continue reading Accepting revulsion 1: Wetting the bed