If you are Republican, much of what follows may be offensive to you. Don’t say I didn’t warn you.

On March 17 of this year, the Washington Post reported that Florida Republicans were proposing a bill in which, among other things, girls in grades six through 12 would be banned from discussing their menstrual cycles in school.

Since “what’s good for the goose is good for the gander,” then the words Johnson, erection, hard-on, stiffy and all slang words for male genitalia should be banned as well. Additionally, the mandate should include the words ejaculation, spurt, come and all orgasmic idioms.

While we are on the banning band wagon … Viagra, Cialis, and all erectile dysfunction medications and procedures should be prohibited too. If we go so far as to refuse women birth control pills, emergency contraception medication, and abortion pills, then why do we want men walking around with free willys?

Come to think of it, where is the federal legislation enforcing compulsory castration for rapists and sex offenders?  Why is it, that since 1996, only 9 states have passed castration laws for rapists and sex offenders and yet in the six months post Roe v. Wade, 24 states banned abortion?  Twenty seven years versus six months … what the hell?  Is it because  physical and/or chemical castration is considered inhumane but forcing a woman to be pregnant is not? 

Why are we only refusing women bodily autonomy and not men? Do people really believe unwanted pregnancies are the result of immaculate conceptions?

Let’s face it, this isn’t a period problem, it’s a penis problem. There are far too many di**s in office …

Marjorie Taylor Greene (MTG) is frequently on my mind these days as she seems to have become the poster girl for Republican extremism and Christian Nationalism/Theocracy.

As odd as this may seem, I feel sorry for her. She is so utterly and completely lost! Why continue to waste oxygen and energy on her through FB memes when it is obvious her behavior will continue to be ridiculously outlandish, wildly inappropriate, and downright criminal? Aren’t we lowering ourselves to her standards by making jokes about her? Targeting her is too easy.

Don’t get me wrong, my pity does not extend to rationalizing or justifying her crude and reprehensible exploits; I only wonder what drives her loathsome antics.

How did she get elected in the first place? What did 170,162 people in the state of Georgia see in her that would make her a viable lawmaker in the United States House of Representatives and what does that say about those voters?

What is at the heart of the matter? Why so much hate? Not all lost people are so hateful. So, what is it?

God is love. When we take up permanent residence in a life of love, we live in God and God lives in us. This way, love has the run of the house, becomes at home and mature in us, so that we’re free of worry on Judgment Day—our standing in the world is identical with Christ’s. There is no room in love for fear. Well-formed love banishes fear. Since fear is crippling, a fearful life—fear of death, fear of judgment—is one not yet fully formed in love.
We, though, are going to love—love and be loved. First, we were loved, now we love. He loved us first.

If anyone boasts, “I love God,” and goes right on hating his brother or sister, thinking nothing of it, he is a liar. If he won’t love the person he can see, how can he love the God he can’t see? The command we have from Christ is blunt: Loving God includes loving people. You’ve got to love both. I John 4:17-21 The Message

The verses above mention the phrase ‘Judgment Day.’ I do not believe in the God-sitting-on-the-throne-judgment end-of-time day damning people to hell … something I suspect MTG does believe. Neither do I believe in a post-death courtroom where I’m seated behind a table with Jesus as my defense attorney pleading my case before a robe-adorned God, gavel in hand waiting to pronounce judgment on my soul.

When I researched the meaning of the phrase ‘Judgment Day’ in Greek, Arabic, and Hebrew, I found the following: “decision, determination, judgment; trial, sentence, accusation; quarrel, dispute. turning point or decisive point of disease progression.”

At face value, these definitions seem to contradict my current beliefs about a Judgment Day. With a little more research, however, I noticed the following in different translations of said verse.

Herein is our love made perfect, that we may have boldness in the day of judgment … KJV

In … “to or toward the inside …” Mirriam-Webster

By this is love perfected with us, so that we may have confidence for the day of judgment … ESV

For … “used as a function word to indicate purpose … an intended goal … the object or recipient of a perception, desire, or activity; because of …”. Mirriam-Webster

Love has been perfected among us in this: that we may have boldness on the day of judgement … NRSV

On … “in or into a position of contact with an upper surface especially so as to be positioned for use or operation.” Mirriam-Webster

In addition to the use of different prepositions, each of the above translations does not capitalize the word ‘judgment.” All of which appears to work in my favor of my ongoing understanding.

Before you read on, please stop and take a few minutes or more to consider the implications of how each preposition changes the reading and meaning of that verse and the entire passage.

I’ll wait …

I love to read and I love to write, so this kind of exercise really appeals to me because it is an avenue for opening myself up to the expansiveness of awareness and Divine Love.

My take?

When we take up permanent residence in a life of love, we live in God and God lives in us.

This is a judgment that I have to make in my mind, soul and body every day of my life—to take up permanent residence in a life of love. Each and every day, sometimes moment to moment … being aware, living in the awareness that I live in God and God lives in me and God lives in you and all of us.

Meditation, contemplation, mindfulness, silence, solitude … are practices that aide me in my Love walk.

If anyone boasts, “I love God,” and goes right on hating his brother or sister, thinking nothing of it, he is a liar. If he won’t love the person he can see, how can he love the God he can’t see? The command we have from Christ is blunt: Loving God includes loving people. You’ve got to love both.

What prevents MTG and others from practicing this Love? Why is she, the right-wing extremists and the vast majority of the GOP so dead set against this, dare I say it, wokeness?

Fear, or as a friend of mine with whom I volunteer at JCCM says, “the Republicans are a bunch of chickensh***s.” I can’t say that I disagree with him.

… There is no room in love for fear. Well-formed love banishes fear. Since fear is crippling, a fearful life—fear of death, fear of judgment—is one not yet fully formed in love.

“Well-formed love” … isn’t that a beautiful phrase? Isn’t that the very definition of being woke? Think of the time, thoughtfulness, compassion, empathy, doubt, questioning, trust, and self-awareness that develops and grows well-formed love.

In Matthew 7:13-14, Jesus put it this way:

Enter through the narrow gate; for the gate is wide and the way is broad that leads to destruction, and there are many who enter through it. For the gate is small and the way is narrow that leads to life, and there are few who find it.

Every bit of insanity in which the Republican party is embroiled is due to fear. Fear takes the easy way out. Fear says “do as I say not as I do.” Fear is sustained in and through control. Fear meets hatred with hatred and violence with violence. Fear demands conformity and punishes diversity. Fear reinforces superiority and sustains autocracy. Fear reviles truth. Fear is defensive. Fear rushes to judgement.

“Judging others, we shore up our own beliefs and assumptions. Judging others allows us to feel superior. That wish to feel superior is harmful. It feeds our fictional self, keeping us in ignorance. Judging others rips us out of interbeing and connection. It arises from ignorance and obstructs compassion.” Kathleen Dowling Singh, The Grace in Aging

Wake up MTG! Wake up GOP! WAKE UP!

For the love of God, Wake Up!



Am I aware, in this moment of formlessness, functioning through this form? from The Grace in Aging Kathleen Dowling Singh

The sunrise was spectacular … dynamic shades—almost neon–of pink and orange reflecting on the underside of what looked like an army of slate-hued, altocumulus clouds set against a brilliant cyan sky. In fact, the vibrant contrast of colors added to the three dimensionality of the billowy puffs making them look like poofy swirls of cotton candy floating across the airspace.

“C’mon, c’mon, you can do it … go, go, go …” I cheered inwardly, as a trio and a separate duo of geese were straining to close ranks on a larger vee of fellow Canada flyers. I was captivated by the wonderous spectacle of their simultaneous flying and honking. Wide-eyed, I stood in place until the feathered skein was a tiny dot in the sky.

“Gases move from high-pressure areas to low-pressure areas. And the bigger the difference between the pressures, the faster the air will move from the high to the low pressure. That rush of air is the wind we experience.” ( Having taught sixth grade science for years, these words reverberated in my soul as I stood listening to the whooshing aria echoing on the needle-limbed pine trees. Variables such as the tree height, branch fullness, and wind speed contributed to the artistry of the sacred hymn.

Contentedly curled up on the couch together, my four-year-old granddaughter and I listened to the “Carol of the Bells” as sung by music box cardinals. She asked, “You know Papa?”
“You know Vicki?”
“You have GGDad.”
“Yes, I take care of him.”
Aside from the sound of crooning songbirds, a cozy silence follows and we snuggle in the warmth of mutual love and affection.

And then there was this …

My father’s car needed an oil change and inspection so I drove to a local automotive shop. The young man who did the work was quick and efficient. When he finished, he backed the car out of the bay in order to place the new inspection sticker in the window. I stood off to the side, but close by.

As he removed the old sticker, washed the window and glued the new sticker in place, he was chatting with a young woman. They seemed to know one another. She had a very sweet-looking labradoodle puppy—a tawny brown curly coat, full of energy, prancing and tugging on his leash.

I knelt down to pet him when he danced close to me. The woman seeing this, forcefully yanked on his leash—the puppy yelped–her jaw and head jutted forward spoiling for a fight—looked me dead in the eye and screamed “NO!!!” She then returned to her conversation with the mechanic as if nothing happened.

I maintained a calm demeanor throughout the encounter and may have said “sorry.”

Within the span of a few seconds, the mechanic stepped aside when he completed his task and I thanked him. As I climbed behind the wheel, my would-be canine friend jumped all over me … yet I did NOT touch him.

“What the frack was that? It’s not ok for me to pet her dog, but it is ok for him to jump all over me,” I sassily asked God as I drove home. Mostly, though, I genuinely felt sorry for the dog. I harbor no ill-will towards the woman and wouldn’t even recognize her if I saw her again.

When I shared this experience with my cousin, he said he could easily have told her–“f*** you, looking her in the eye with a direct and present demeanor, willing for whatever additional response or engagement she might have”–which could certainly be one response to such nonsensical ire.

On the whole, I do not like confrontations and work to avoid them; but this wasn’t that. I did not feel any anger or negative emotion towards her in the moment … not while I waited, not while I got in my car, not even when I was being cheeky with God, and not now.

Jean-Yves Leloup in his commentary on The Gospel of Mary Magdalene says the following:

Offering the other cheek means presenting an entirely new and unexpected way of dealing with the problem. It means to oppose violence with consciousness, to look the other in the eye, to regard the other as subject like oneself, and to refuse to be a predictable object. To be in harmony is to enter into resonance with other subjects, and with other liberties …

To be in harmony with our enemies is to skillfully allow their violence to pass through us without contaminating us. Just as in the martial arts, this attunement to our attackers can then awaken a consciousness in them that could help them to get out of the trouble they are in.”

Additionally …

As long as our peace is dependent on any kind of external reality, it is not Peace; as long as our love for others and for the world is dependent on attitudes and feelings toward us, it is not Love.

I do not know if this explains my response or not. I wish I could say I walk around that consciously aware. I think I just got lucky.

Our purpose on Earth is not to manipulate things … but to meet each other in living encounters. Life is too short to be lived by exploiting each other. There is something better for us to do, and the time we have is barely enough to learn how to love one another. Jean-Yves Leloup

Ain’t that the truth!

The Gospel

The Gospel

The Gospel is a process much more than a product, a style more than a structure, a person more than a production. It is a way of being in the world that will always feel like compassion, mercy, and spaciousness–at least to honest and healthy people.

From Jesus’ Alternative Plan:  The Sermon on the Mount by Richard Rohr

The Gospel


Am I aware, in this moment of formlessness, functioning through this form?  from The Grace in Aging Kathleen Dowling Singh