Efforts to dialogue with Dan Rodricks’ position (that is, take it seriously) led to a lot of confusion and self-doubt in my prayer time Friday morning 10/25/13.
The past week’s instability in my support system had forced me to ask for and accept significant (by my standards) amounts of money from acquaintances who had never donated to me before. It was as if the Cosmos was retaliating for things I said in “Chaos overwhelms the poor.” Am I a panhandler already myself? Is there any shame in that? Am I in any way a better investment than the drunks who panhandle on the street? Continue reading (3) Baby steps→
Dad was still in good health back in ’83-85, when I became so deeply interested in spiritual healing. He maintained a pragmatic skepticism about it throughout; in essence, “What’s the use? We’re all going to die anyway.”
I recalled that Monday night 12/07/09 on my way home from Rite Aid, where I’d had to go buy a few things. I was having pretty severe pain in lower left abdomen, after having had several “difficult” eliminations earlier in the day. I took the pain for infection-inflamed ureter; later concluded I was passing a stone. Long time since I’d passed a stone. Long time by my standards, that is.
The state I was in at that hour, I was inclined to cancel all appointments and errands for the next day, and plan to spend all day Tuesday flat on my back in bed. With pain like this, you can’t do much more than just stare into space and feel miserable.
I would recall one author’s answer to Dad’s argument; Lawrence Althouse is the guy’s name. He said the sheer alleviation of pain — without opiates — is justification enough for the practice of spiritual healing. Pain occasions loss of productivity, as just described. It also stresses relationships; with any less self-control as to these things than I’ve learned in the past few years, had anyone crossed my path the wrong way on that trip home, I might well have snapped at the person.
That’s not something you want to do in the ghetto. Especially at night.
There are other was to effect spiritual healing, besides prayer.
Just being nice to people, as opposed to choosing, say, to inject needless pain (“static”) into their world — that’s one.
Crystal happened to wait on me at the Rite Aid; she’s my favorite clerk, and I’d not seen her in months. Damn if she didn’t smile at me and give me a cheery greeting as soon as I came in the door.
Damn if my pain didn’t go away — completely — for some time, later after I got home, as I recalled that encounter. “Spiritual” — healing — indeed.
Every word can work good or ill. My choice; your choice. on air talent, radio talk show, talk show host, the homeless blogger
My prayer for myself today was that I “come into a world where my diligence will be rewarded.” A related new concept, as far as the blog is concerned: efficacy — the feeling or sense that one can accomplish something. In question is whether I perceive my world that way now.
It is notable that a background of chaos militates against efficacy, and normally teaches that diligence will not be rewarded, except as it’s expressed in opportunism and predation (See “Can’t resist temptation? …” below.) A background of, or perceptions of, order, in contrast, teach the exact opposites.
I have been asked to share my vast wisdom on the subject of yeast breads (chometz).
I’m not a big fan of lots of different recipes for bread. My philosophy is to find one basic recipe and then do variations on it: experiment with different ratios; stir in a cup of raisins or nuts or grated cheese; make rolls, using cinnamon, sugar and butter, or jelly, or peanut butter and jelly; use milk or evaporated milk or even fruit juice or cream instead of water; and so on.
I’ve forgotten the basic recipe I used before becoming homeless. One could start with this one, and experiment with different ratios until one settles on one one likes.
One of my buds came into McDonald’s this morning looking for me. I’d not seen him in about a week. He’s in really good shape today, but it turns out that, as I’d supposed, he’d been on a bender.
We went out front to smoke and talk, and the time came for him to get on his way. I expected him to turn to go back upstairs to get his stuff. He did not. “Where’s your stuff?” I asked.
He’d lost it. Again. Everything. Kept only his I.D. and Independence card. Somewhere, sometime, while blacked out, he’d got up and left wherever he’d been, leaving behind all his belongings in a forgotten place.
In my immediately last prior post, “Me, me, me,” I said:
It’s not that I despised material possessions; I did not value them nearly as much as I (overwhelmingly) valued relationships. What I did despise was the desire for material possessions. As a result, now I have none.
Relationships are what I do have. They are my treasures in heaven. on air talent, talk show host, radio talk show, the homeless blogger
This has been a very heavy day, and there’s a lot here. For the moment, at least, I will not try to organize this.
Darkness at times appears to serve Light; destruction, to serve creation.
It is a rude awakening for me to have to revisit the world of infantile self-centeredness, apparently to have to re-learn correctly this time (at age 57!) some things I didn’t learn correctly on the first go-round.
How many have prayed fervently, day and night, for an ailing loved one, and never obtained the desired outcome?
The parable of the widow and the judge promises, “[W]ill not God grant justice to his chosen ones who cry to him day and night? Will he delay long in helping them? I tell you, he will quickly grant justice to them.” For African Americans, that deserves to be laughable.
No one has ever lived, nor is ever likely to live, more expert in prayer than Jesus. I cannot believe he set forth a teaching either so completely wrong in itself or so subject to complete misunderstanding.