October Update

Bought a standard poodle puppy.  Bringing him home October 5, so October will be full of housebreaking, and FUN.



Entries in spirituality (7)


Change the Things You Can

I came upon some astonishing photographs in the "Sunday Review" section of the Sunday New York Times.  These photos show Catholic Womenpriests, a group of women I had no knowedge of before last Sunday.

Apparently seven women were ordained as priests by some adventurous Roman Catholic Bishops in Germany in 2002.  Then these seven went on to ordain more women as priests.

I couldn't get over was how priestly the women in the Times photo display look.  I am not a Catholic, but if I were, I'd have no trouble at all accepting the women in the photos as priests.

What I love about this new movement is that it adheres completely to the Serenity Prayer:  God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, (the Catholic, male hierarchy up to and including the Pope), courage to change the things I can (find like-minded bishops and go ahead and produce a body of women priests anyway, and the wisdom to know the difference (these women priests look plenty wise and at peace with God.


Flashmobs, Joy, and the Global Village

How can anyone put down flashmobs after watching the video posted below?  It's worth staging lots of corny stuff, just to get something like this lovely film clip. It's a celebration of good, civilized things humans can do with social media. I not only have a moving, spiritual experience every time I watch it again, but the experience prompted me to research this use of Beethoven's Ninth Symphony and Schiller's "Ode to Joy" poem. So now I know they inspired a national anthem for the European Union.


Human Spirit, Olympic Spirit

Watching the Olympics last evening, I was struck by the ups and downs of spirit demonstrated by some athletes.

     The CBS announcers made a big deal of the fact that Colorado swimmer Missy Franklin had to swim a 200-meter freestyle semi-final and ten minutes later had to compete in the 100-meter backstroke final.  Also they emphasized that she was facing powerful competition in the 100-meter backstroke race from Seebohm of Australia.

     Missy got permission to spend her 10-minute break in the divers' recovery pool in order to maximize her rest time between swims.  Throughout the actual competition, Missy was not out front, though she was not behind.  Then, at the very end, she suddenly surged ahead and not only won, but set an American record.

     So in spite of all the worries about extra swimming and little rest time, Missy had tremendous spirit, smiled through the whole ordeal, and triumphed.

     Meanwhile, on the same evening, the US men's gymnastic team started out well, had a slip, and then couldn't stop messing up what they had previously excelled at.  It was as if the first few little fumbles snowballed into dire missteps.  As if the entire team felt and then acted cursed; the spirit went out of them.

     What a fascinating, mysterious Olympic evening!




Exercising in the Present

My last two posts have been about the power of staying in the present.  Just before those posts, I was writing about how healthy it is for us to stay in motion.  Now I’m trying to combine the two in my life.  Whenever I am waiting around for something, I try to be in motion.

         In the elevator, I march in place.  In line at the supermarket, I rock or dance in place, in my desk chair, I stretch, or stand up and sit down again when I’m contemplating what to write next.

         This is a hard habit to make and an easy one to break, especially if I’m lost in thought.  I’m trying to train myself to move and think at the same time.

         On the telephone, I remember more and more often to walk about while talking. (Modern phones, either cell or cordless, are a big boon here.)  Waiting for the bus, instead of sitting in the bus shelter, I walk circles around it.

         Any suggestions for more?  Please let me know. 


Dogs & Staying in the Present

Speaking of staying in the present (my post for May 10), it occurred to me that animals other than ourselves have no trouble living in the present.

         Years ago, my family owned an apricot standard poodle named Doc.  He was a brilliant, spontaneous comedian and performer.  If you rolled a tennis ball down the long hall in our apartment, he would give chase, and just before grabbing the ball in his jaws, he’d do a theatrical little “Ah-ha!” move, just for show.  Or he’d lie with his blanket between his forelegs, and look away as if to hint, “Say, this would be a good time for you to swipe my blanket.”  If you took the hint, he’d have the other end of the blanket before you could even begin to pull, and the tug of war was on!

         As far as I could tell, Doc never strayed into the past, and he had only the most immediate possible sense of the future.  Sometimes he would sit in front of the cupboard that contained the doggy treats, straightening his paws and his haunches in an attempt to sit as neatly as possible in hopes of a reward that might come in 30 seconds or less.  Other times he would hear us approaching our building, rise up at the window, and then rush to the door, anticipating our immediate arrival. 

         The farthest Doc saw into the future was on occasions when we were going on a trip, suitcases packed and already trundled to the car.  Someone would have to walk him: 1) prior to putting him in the car, or  2) prior to putting him back in the house, because he wasn’t going with us, and our neighbor was going to be walking and feeding him for a couple of days.

         This walk was almost impossible to accomplish, because Doc, knowing the trip was about to start, knowing he might or might not be going, refused to go anywhere except as close as he could to the car.  Now that I recall this, I wonder why we didn’t just move the car around the block temporarily, but it never occurred to us then.

         On trips when Doc was going, and finally got walked and finally got into the car, the future simply disappeared.  And there was that smiling dog in the rear view mirror, totally in the glorious present.