I have this other, relentless, competing identity, too. A “sin” nature entitled, hedonistic, self-preserving, frequently aggrandized, capable of blithe selfishness and disturbing disregard. The unvarnished, unedited, undefended, unexplained unjustified, often unlovely truth. — Steven Kalas

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http://www.bing.com/images/search?q=images+sin+nature&qpvt=images+sin+nature&FORM=IGRE#view=detail&id=4DBB5E420BF5FDDEDF6D9EACA2F0FD249746D767&selectedIndex=16
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The nice woman pays her bill, right there in my office, placing $200 in cash on my coffee table. She exits. I count the cash. There are not 10 $20 bills. There are 11. I’m holding an extra $20.

I’m astonished by the thought that pops into my head as if you’d switched on a television. The thought is alien and unbidden. But it’s there, too late to deny or excuse.

I’m $20 up. And she’ll never know.

Whoa! Where did that come from? What am I thinking? A shadowy chill falls across me. I beeline out the door, across the waiting room and into the parking lot. I call her name, and hand her the bill. “Thank you,” she says. As if I did her a favor.

Wrong. I did myself a favor. And I sit in my office for a few minutes, breathing through the experience. That was weird. I’m surprised by the random eruption of sordid thoughts and sometimes actions in me. What my religion calls my “sin nature.”

It’s there in me. In you, too. In everyone.

I enjoy thinking of myself as a good man. But I’m not good. Yes, I have goodness in me. But that’s not to say I’m good. I have this other, relentless, competing identity, too. A nature entitled, hedonistic, self-preserving, frequently aggrandized, capable of blithe selfishness and disturbing disregard.

That’s why, I’m sure, my father-figure, Rex, would so often say to me, “Character is what you have when no one is watching. When no one would ever know.”

Last Sunday I told you the story of a television producer contacting me about a new docudrama about people leading double lives. I talked about how double lives tax our soul. Yet, I also observed the danger of reckless, undiscerning confession. Apparently the discussion has begun a ricochet in my mind. I’m still pondering the implications.

More than once in this space have I admired the traditions of Alcoholics Anonymous — The Twelve Steps. Alcoholics come to admit they are “powerless over alcohol,” the first step but, really, that’s pretty much the end of The Twelve Steps’ focus on drinking. The rest of the journey is about developing a core spirituality. AA is like “spirituality for dummies,” and I mean that as a high compliment.

I’m saying that, even if you’re not an alcoholic, most people would do well to work some version of the steps.

When I think of my “sin nature,” I think of how AA’s Twelve Steps is dominated by Steps Four through Ten. This is the real guts of it. The rigor and work of it. Of any authentic spiritual path.

Step Four: Made a searching and fearless moral inventory of ourselves.

Translation? I told myself the truth about me. The unvarnished, unedited, undefended, unexplained unjustified, often unlovely TRUTH. We name it. We own it. This is freedom. Truth begets choices.

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

Now it’s not a secret. Now it’s in the light. It is always an honor when someone asks if I’ll be the “other human being.”

Step Six: Were entirely ready to have God remove all these defects of character.

Entirely ready. Yikes. The reason I recognize “sin nature” as sin nature is because that part of my identity hangs on for dear life to ideas and behaviors that are so obviously and measurably destructive and depleting to happiness. Mine and others.

Step Seven: Humbly asked Him to remove our shortcomings.

I cannot, by the mere power of my own will, decide, in every case, to stop desiring what is hurting me and others. This is the immutable reality of the human condition.

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

Ah, the list. Are you willing? I notice that, for some people on my list, just thinking about them makes me start to explain and justify my behavior. My “sin nature” believes deeply that my anger at these people is the only credential I require.

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

This is the deep wisdom of The Twelve Steps. I’ve told myself, God and another human being the truth. Step Nine demands we give pause, that we practice a sober discernment before we go running off at the mouth to everyone.

Step Ten: Continued to take personal inventory and when we were wrong, promptly admitted it.

And so on, now as a way of life. A good life.

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http://www.reviewjournal.com/columns-blogs/steven-kalas/leaving-life-reminding-others-treasure-theirs

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Four years of my professional life were spent working in hospice. Director of bereavement and pastoral care. Simply put, four of the best years of my life. Creative, energizing and a daily learning curve. A downer? Absolutely not! Quite the opposite. More hopeful, inspirational, meaningful.

I listened to the mortals in the bed. Talked to them. Was always struck by how undramatic they were. Not a lot of 11th hour philosophy or religion. More, I was struck by the simplicity of things. Stories. Memories.

Just kinda wrapping things up. Maybe talking sports, world events, politics. I often had the feeling this is exactly the interaction I would have had with this patient had I met them in their living room a year before the terminal diagnosis.

But, from time to time, the mortals in the bed would trust you with their regrets. Death shines a light unspeakably bright on what really matters. And, standing in the imminent shadow of death, hospice patients often inventory the treasures they missed.

A friend introduces me to the work of Bronnie Ware, an Australian nurse, writer and singer/songwriter who spent part of her profession in hospice palliative care. Ware is the author of “The Top Five Regrets of the Dying: A life transformed by the dearly departed.”

The “top five” are no surprise. Not when you say them out loud.

1. I wish I’d had the courage to live a life true to myself, not the life others expected of me.

2. I wish I didn’t work so hard. (Ware says this one has a particular masculine twist. Men lament missing the childhoods of their children. Men lament time not spent with the beloved mate.)

3. I wish I would have had the courage to express my feelings.

4. I wish I would have stayed in touch with my friends.

5. I wish I would have allowed myself to be happier. (We humans tend to act as if there is a “Happiness Authorization Board” whose permission we must be granted before we can be allowed to revel in the miracle of this existence.)

In my heart, I nod at this author whom I have never met. Yes, those are the great themes. I heard them, too. The dying teach us.

Yes, I listened to the mortals in the hospice beds. What they said, and what they didn’t say. The latter is just as important.

Things People Never Say In Hospice

■ I should have vacuumed more often.

■ I just forgave way too many people.

■ As a child, I had too many competent, supportive adults in my life.

■ I regret the way I neglected my Facebook page.

■ I should have worried more.

■ I should have envied more.

■ There never seemed to be enough time to be cynical.

■ I was always too merciful in my views of others.

■ I should have spent more time at the office.

■ I told my wife/husband “I love you” too often.

■ I wish I would have been better at grudges.

■ I was never clear about my racial prejudices.

■ I wish I would have made myself sick with alcohol more often.

■ My children, you wanna squeeze every drop of bitterness out of life.

■ (NAME), would you please read my tweets at my funeral?

■ I wish I would have made more time to be catty.

■ I really regret the time I spent learning to play the piano.

■ I’m having doubts whether I was sufficiently antagonistic toward homosexuals during my life.

■ Don’t you just hate the sound of laughter?

■ I should have hoarded more.

■ I could have used about 12 more meaningless sexual experiences.

■ I should have cursed at my children more.

■ I should have hit my children more often.

■ Can you sit shiva on Twitter?

■ I’ve made a photo album of all the people I hate. I want you to have it.

■ I regret not taking more selfies.

■ Does my butt look big?

■ I gave away too much money.

■ I missed out on a lot of pornography.

■ I’m still mad at (NAME) for not friending me back.

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ego over ethos

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http://www.reviewjournal.com/columns-blogs/steven-kalas/staying-love-means-choosing-be-vulnerable

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“Great romance and great sex have to wear off, you know,” is the clucking, admonishing saying not first of cynics, but of frightened people. Because it’s a lie. Romance and sex never “wear off.” Rather, they are abandoned and starved to death through some combination of usually laziness (forgetting to pay attention) and to a lesser degree (esp. in new relationships) cowardice (the slow, mostly unconscious move to create a safe distance between your heart and its sore vulnerability).

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http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/IBOT

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The problems of the “Fred Astaire” motorized wheelchair stair climber/descender include user variables which raise injury liability issues such as carpet snags/counter-intuitive descending with one’s back going down-step.

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What appears to be user-miraculous ends up being potentially user-destructive.   The problem of ego (technology) over ethos (common sense-foresight).  

Similar quandary over the 2 wheeler Segway w/its user liability problem (“speed kills”)  –  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Segway_PT#United_States

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Ego over ethos   — infamous LA routinized throwdown   –

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A cheap, unregistered firearm rumoured to be carried (sometimes unlawfully) by police officers. The firearm is thrown down next to a body in the case of a wrongful shooting of a citizen, so as to give the impression that the victim had been armed at the time.

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http://onlineslangdictionary.com/meaning-definition-of/throw-down

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Demented ego over ethos  — exhibit A  –

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http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jeffrey_R._MacDonald#DNA_testing

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MacDonald’s “know it all” “I can do no wrong” hubris finds its taproot as the antagonist in “The First shall be Last, and the Last shall be First.”    http://biblehub.com/matthew/20-16.htm

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Apostle Paul’s “ego” over Jesus-driven ethos??     Not likely   –

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http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pauline_Christianity#As_a_pejorative_term

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http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pauline_Christianity

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As to the hypothesis that Paul distorted rather than developed the faith, this depends upon a judgment as to wherein lies the right path. Henry Chadwick, former Oxford don, commented about a later controversy: “It was not that the heretics departed from the road; it was that they took a path along which the road was not subsequently built.”

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http://www.patheos.com/blogs/peterenns/2014/04/the-apostle-pauls-clear-inerrant-teaching-on-government-and-why-we-dont-need-to-follow-it/

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And yet, here is a salve for the Chosen Ones   –

http://www.patheos.com/blogs/peterenns/2014/04/a-long-lost-letter-back-to-paul-from-the-jewish-christians-at-rome-that-i-totally-made-up/

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If I could go back in time, I’d love to be a fly on the wall to hear how the Jewish believers in the church at Rome heard Paul’s words in his letter to them. (Actually, if I really could go back in time I’d first make a pit stop along the way so I could win the Power Ball Jackpot, but I digress.)

Here we have Paul writing a letter to a church he had neither founded nor even visited and that had a significant Jewish population. And he says things like the following:

  • Gentiles (a.k.a. Greeks) may be sinners, but Jews are no better off in God’s eyes, since they are the ones who have God’s gift of Torah but don’t do what it says.
  • Jews and Gentiles are in the same boat as far as God is concerned because both are enslaved to the power of sin, both equally fall short of God’s glory, and both equally need Jesus, not Torah, to defeat that power.
  • This decentering of Torah to allow Gentiles to become equal partners with Jews in Israel’s story, though appearing to be an unexpected move, has actually been God’s plan all along, beginning with Abraham.
  • Neither circumcision nor maintaining food laws, both of which are commandments to Israel, remain necessary for God’s people–either Jews or Gentiles–in view of Christ’s death and resurrection.
  • Those whose conscience tells them that they need to maintain food laws may continue to do so, but rather than being praised as obeying Scripture, these believers are “weak” in their faith as opposed to those who are “strong,” i.e., those who understand that no foods are unclean.
  • Neither the weak nor the strong are to judge each other, for love and unity among the people of God take priority over whether Israel’s ancient practices continue to be maintained.

I hope one day we find a long lost letter written back to Paul by these Jewish believers. It might go something like this:

Dear Paul,

We read your letter with great interest, and it sparked no little amount of commotion among your fellow Jews.

Have you lost your mind?

We believe in Jesus as you do, and like you we are still scratching our heads a bit about why our messiah came in humility and weakness, even dying a criminal’s death, and then was raised. You’ve actually helped us quite a bit on those things, especially early on in your letter, and we much appreciate it.

But Paul, you’re Jewish. You’re one of us. Do you really think that the God of our fathers would simply reverse course and expect us to figure out that Jesus the Galilean brought an end to our ancient traditions–especially given how (according to the stories we heard) Jesus himself never said any of what you’re saying here?

We’ve never met, though your reputation precedes you. We believe that you are an apostle, but do you really think we should just take your word for it that all that we’ve known is now, at best, an add-on and at worst a hindrance to true faith in the God of our fathers?

And we appreciate how fervently and creatively you cite scripture to support your point, but don’t you think you took your creative readings of scripture a bit too far? Was obedience to Torah really never central to the Lord’s overall plan? We’ve read our scripture cover to cover many times and we can’t find where God even hints at that idea.

Your reading of the story of our father Abraham to marginalize Torah-keeping is way over the top, and your handling of the Psalms and the Prophets to show how the Lord has always “elected” Gentiles is…well…you might as well say that there is really no advantage at all to being a Jew–like we’re one big mistake.

You try to get out of that implication a couple of times in your letter. You sense the dilemma, but frankly you don’t do a very good job of talking your way out of it.

And then toward the end of your letter, when you talk about clean and unclean foods (which seems to be the real point of your letter), you call “weak” those who have the courage and faithfulness amid our pagan culture to maintain God’s holy laws, given by him to Moses on Mt. Sinai, and you call others “strong” for not doing so.

So, what’s up with that?

Paul, we cannot stress this enough: you can’t just pick and choose what parts of scripture you think are worth holding on to.

After all, if everyone did that, there’d be chaos. And where does it end, Paul? Once you start denying one part of scripture, there is no logical reason not to deny anything else. And then what happens to the authority of scripture?

You can’t do this sort of thing with God’s word and you can’t claim that God is telling you to deny what God had told us from ancient days up to know.

We respect you as our brother, Paul, but when you finally pay us a visit, which we do hope will happen in the not-too-distant future, we would like to sit down with you and hear from you more clearly your reasoning process in all of this–exactly how Jesus’s death and resurrection, which we firmly believe, leads you to draw the conclusion that God is turning his back on the very traditions he commanded.

So, those are our main concerns. If in the meantime you decide to write back, could you please work on writing shorter sentences, and maybe not breaking off in mid-sentence to follow another train of thought? That would help us a lot.

We would also appreciate it you used certain key words a bit more consistently–like faith, righteousness, and law. We see some ambiguity here and it’s already caused us no end of debate.

Most sincerely,

Your brothers and sisters in the faith,

fellow children of our father Abraham, according to the flesh

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Top brass egos over ethos (Jeremiah Johnson/larger than life ethos of Jim Gant)  –

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http://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/american-spartan–by-ann-scott-tyson-about-maj-jim-gants-mission-in-afghanistan/2014/03/28/4440187e-aac8-11e3-adbc-888c8010c799_story.html

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Eventually, the high command terminated Gant’s career and those of two other superb Special Forces officers who agreed with his values: Matt Golsteyn and Dan McKone. We Americans admire our Green Berets because men like Gant, Golsteyn and McKone live among the tribes and challenge our Islamist enemies to do battle over basic ideals. Their seniors should mentor them and direct their enthusiastic efforts. Regrettably, the Special Forces command did not address the lack of leadership by the colonels who failed to guide junior leaders such as Gant and his comrades.

Army and Marine grunts tried; they toiled without complaint at their Sisyphean task. They fought and died for the Afghans, but they couldn’t substitute for the lack of Afghan leadership. At one point, Gant told his team: “We will never win in Afghanistan. . . . It gives us a place to go and be warriors.”

Many — probably most — of our grunts hold that view; they are our guardians, regardless of the folly of the mission. They fight because they are warriors, not because naive generals believe that American soldiers can persuade Afghan tribes to fight for a punk government.

One general wrote that Gant lived in “a fantasy world.” That is true. But the generals placed him there without providing mature leadership to guide him. The combination of the warrior spirit and a fabulist strategy created this tale of daffy devotion. According to his wife, “Jim had become more Pashtun than the Pashtuns.” He tried to be the leader the Pashtuns didn’t have.

Our overall strategy failed because we lacked sufficient control over the feckless Afghan leaders we placed in power. It’s a wonder the exuberant Gant didn’t lead a coup attempt against Karzai. Fortunately, his excessive risk-taking and unbridled devotion did not end in tragedy.

“Catch-22” was a satirical novel, sprinkled with gritty vignettes of real combat during World War II. “American Spartan” is the real-life story of living a fantasy, sprinkled with allusions to an impossibly ambitious strategy.

 

 

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ethos over ego, though the line is sliver-thin between self-respect and self-inflation  –

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http://www.reviewjournal.com/columns-blogs/steven-kalas/when-boy-first-fills-shoes-man

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My son’s football coach asks me this generous question as I’m bent over on the sidelines, liquid joy pouring out of my eyes. Ecstasy surges. The weight of happiness pushes my head down, hands on my knees.

Yesterday, my youngest, Joseph, age 12, lost a football game. But a miracle happened, and having a front row seat for that miracle makes me the richest man alive.

There comes a moment in a boy’s life when he “gets it.” The penny drops. A golden light pours down from heaven and young Arthur pulls the sword from the stone. He understands the power in his heart, his head … and his body. He understands this is his power. That he is responsible for the power. That he can wield his own power.

I’ve been waiting for this moment since Joseph first played organized football last fall.

Up until yesterday, Joseph was constrained. Tentative. Careful. Polite. You could see it in his body language. In his gait. He ran less like a thoroughbred and more like a busy bellhop, scooting across a hotel lobby.

Yesterday was the day Joseph saw his first real glimpse of himself as a competitive athlete.

Yesterday was the day he learned to play football.

It started with a perfect seam route. (On offense, Joseph plays tight end.) And, wonder of wonders, the quarterback threw him a perfect ball, which Joseph locked into his hands seamlessly. He then shrugged off his defender and scrambled for a 20-yard gain before he was caught from behind.

Joseph went down in the pile as a self-conscious boy. He arose from the pile living into the blueprint of the man he will become.

It wasn’t over.

On defense, Joseph plays linebacker. And suddenly he was a one-man wrecking crew. He got his first quarterback sack. He dominated the edge, so much so that the opposing team began to run away from him, forcing Joseph’s coaches to bounce him from the left to the right side and back. He pursued. Turned plays. Contained plays. Ended plays. Flat balling.

Apparently, when you make the very first pass reception of your life, you begin to get the idea that you can do anything.

I have never, until yesterday, seen that look in his eyes. Absolute concentration combined with absolute passion. Missile lock. Fox One. Fire.

Carl Jung said that, every time a man becomes a father, he has another chance to become a king. Jung means, of course, the archetype of the king. A leader, at once merciful, benevolent and powerful. We lead our children.

Fathers, need I remind you? When our children are born, we win the lottery. We assume a mantel of ridiculous riches. We feed them. Protect them. Teach them. We set limits. We surround them with high expectations. We push but don’t crush. We critique, but we don’t criticize. We demand accountability, but we don’t humiliate, degrade or hit. We encourage constantly and raise our voice sparingly.

And then we wait. We wait for them to see it. To discover it.

It? I mean we wait for life to awaken them to themselves. And, in awakening, they find their passion. And their passion pushes them to their destiny.

When that happens, fathers are rewarded in a windfall of riches. We get to stand, speechless with admiration. Just a big, grinning goofus. Overwhelmed with happiness for our child’s happiness.

“I had a lot of fun,” is Joseph’s only commentary after the game.

Good for you, boy. Fun is underrated. Fun is a good thing.

Me? Fun is one word to describe it.

“You OK, Dad?” Coach Nick says.

Yeah. It only looks like I’m having a coronary episode. In fact, my heart just melted into my shoes and is overflowing onto the synthetic grass. The joy is taking me apart. I don’t exactly know how gravity is holding me to Earth. I’ll be OK in a minute. Or never.

I was standing there the day Joseph was born. Lucky me. But I was standing there for this birth, too. For the second time in Joseph’s life, I wonder if I should head to the tobacconist and buy a box of cigars to hand out.

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http://curtisnarimatsu.wordpress.com/2014/04/08/nobody-comes-to-therapy-who-hasnt-lost-something-the-heart-is-injured-limping-constrained-by-psychic-adhesions-aching-either-obviously-or-just-behind-the-curtain-of-consciousness-the-t/

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http://curtisnarimatsu.wordpress.com/2012/06/20/idyllic-imperatives-in-this-tragic-and-indifferent-life/

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http://www.lvrj.com/living/appropriate-self-respect-can-lift-all-areas-of-life-118320899.html

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A warning: there’s a downside, a real tricky balance in the work of self-respect. I have learned to nurture a healthy suspicion when I become too strident, too righteous about that value.

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There’s a line between self-respect and self-important/arrogant pride.

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It’s a fine line. Easy to cross. Way too easy for me, anyway. And I cross it at my own peril.

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When the human ego conscripts the language, the work and the mantle of self-respect, you start to feel really good and right about discarding people from your life.

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And then you can know that you were right, because you don’t have any friends at all.

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Self-respect and self-importance — not the same at all. But they can feel the same.

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Why can’t I be like you or in sync with you? Because then there would be no need for a me, just you and you alone.

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Ego over ethos?    The matter of Cliven Bundy   –

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http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bundy_Ranch_standoff#Political_commentary_reactions

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http://www.bing.com/images/search?q=images+cliven+bundy&qpvt=images+cliven+bundy&FORM=IGRE#view=detail&id=A85DF261FD924C0A85A39D6BCA1BE268592D61AD&selectedIndex=480
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ego over ethos  — the matter of Monica Lewinsky  –

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http://www.nytimes.com/2014/05/07/opinion/dowd-burning-the-beret.html?_r=0

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But, clearly, she was stung and wanted to have her say about the revelation in February that Hillary had told her friend Diane Blair, knowing it would be made public eventually, that Bill was at fault for the affair but deserved props for trying to “manage someone who was clearly a narcissistic loony toon.” Hillary also said she blamed herself for Bill’s dalliance. Monica trenchantly notes about the feminist icon, who is playing the gender card on the trail this time around: “I find her impulse to blame the Woman — not only me, but herself — troubling.”

Lewinsky said that Bill “took advantage” of her — in a consensual way. “Any ‘abuse’ came in the aftermath,” she writes, “when I was made a scapegoat in order to protect his powerful position.”

Continue reading the main storyWrite A Comment

Disingenuously and pretentiously, Monica said that the tragedy of Tyler Clementi, the Rutgers freshman who committed suicide in 2010 after his roommate secretly streamed his liaison with another man over the Web, had wrought “a Prufrockian moment:” Did she dare disturb the Clinton universe to become a spokeswoman against bullying?

Her bullies were crude strangers in person and online who reduced her to a dirty joke or verb. Monica corrects Beyoncé, who sings, “He Monica Lewinsky’d all on my gown,” saying it should be “He Bill Clinton’d all on my gown.” But her bullies were also the Clintons and their vicious attack dogs who worked so hard to turn “that woman,” as Bill so coldly called her, into the scapegoat.

As Hillary gave a campaign-style speech in Maryland Tuesday, warning that economic inequality could lead to “social collapse,” That Woman started her own campaign, keening about her own social collapse. It was like a Golden Oldie tour of a band you didn’t want to hear in the first place.

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http://www.reviewjournal.com/columns-blogs/steven-kalas/hunting-evil-nudged-toward-light-goodness

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All significant cultures find some way to identify in their midst individuals with special gifts for discerning and distinguishing light from darkness, good from evil.

These people have a knack for putting their finger on the deception. The way truth is concealed or lies advanced to conscript the rights and liberties of others.

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But, as with most any passion, there is a light side and a dark side. Even the most noble passions can become exaggerated, distorted, overly dramatized and idolatrous.

The useful part (the light side) of my passion shows up in clinical practice. It helps me to help people tell themselves the truth. To get radically honest about motives, even when what is revealed is unlovely. In some cases, disgraceful. When we admit we are lying, we instantly become perfect tellers of the truth.

I didn’t see the dark side until I was in my 40s. Ruth, a gifted therapist I met in Colorado, simply observed to me one day that this ever-present vigilance to interpersonal evil and injustice looked … well, exhausting. And perhaps it was exhausting to others, too.

I protested that a man has no higher moral duty than to name evil, to unmask it, and to stand against it at all costs.

She shrugged, unimpressed.

“I’m not asking you to renegotiate your moral values. I’m more asking whether you have any other values.”

And then she changed my life. “Of course we should take evil seriously. Of course it’s wrong to abuse power, to hurt children, to savage reputations for personal gain, and so on. But, wouldn’t it make more sense to spend a disproportion of your time teaching beneficence?”

It seemed ridiculously simple when she said it out loud — helping human beings find what was right within them, and developing that. In myself, too. Helping husbands and wives learn to love. Helping mothers and fathers learn to identify malicious projections, and to replace those destructive energies with powerful moves of love, nurture, sacrifice, leadership and advocacy for their children. The applications were and are endless.

Indeed, the world contains evil and injustice. But human beings each have a light of goodness, just waiting to be coaxed and encouraged.

Yes, justice matters. But redemption matters more.

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Politician Mike Gabbard was the classic carpetbagger opportunist (ego over ethos).   Remember his actual roadside campaigning the day after 9/11?    His daughter Tulsi is more positively  anchored emotionally.

http://www.honolulumagazine.com/Honolulu-Magazine/August-2004/Who-is-Mike-Gabbard/

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Mike Gabbard has “ties to a Hare Krishna splinter group that gave rise to a number of political candidates over the past 30 years.”

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“Gabbard became an anti-homosexual activist before the same-sex marriage debate really took hold in Hawai’i. In the early ’90s, he founded an educational nonprofit called Stop Promoting Homosexuality and bought airtime at local radio station KGU for a show called Let’s Talk Straight Hawai’i.”

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“Understandably, the public has lumped Gabbard into America’s growing number of conservative politicians. His social views do veer accordingly to the right. But is he Christian right?

Gabbard himself says he is Catholic.”

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“Gabbard had strong ties to an obscure Hare Krishna splinter group that, in the late 1970s, fielded several political candidates. The splinter group was founded by a Hawai’i homegrown guru named Chris Butler.   Butler was a disciple of A.C. Bahkitevedanta Swami Prabhupad, who founded the International Society of Krishna Consciousness (ISKCON). ISKCON is the high-visibility sect whose orange robes, shaved heads, public begging and chanting are what most people think of when they hear the term Hare Krishna.

Butler eventually broke away from ISKCON, criticizing the regimen and centralization of ISKCON life. He formed his own organization, which has had several names: Hare Name Society, Identity Institute and the Science of Identity Foundation. What started as a small religious sect on Maui in the 1970s developed a following that, according to some estimates, includes tens of thousands of people all over the world.

Butler’s followers chant, practice vegetarianism and Bhakti yoga and must refrain from intoxicants and “illicit sex,” or all sexual contact except between married couples at the most fertile time of the month. Unlike ISKCON members who beg publicly, Butler’s “other Krishnas” tend to support themselves by creating their own businesses.

Many of Butler’s associates made headlines in the 1976 election when they created a party called Independents for Godly Government. As its name implied, the group insisted on rigorous moral standards for its candidates. They could accept only half their allowed salaries and distribute the other half to the people they represented, accept no gifts from special interests, commit no crimes and abstain from intoxication and illicit sex. The party fielded several serious contenders for office, including Kathy Hoshijo  [Amau'ulu Hilo hero Anki's daughter  -- her brother is atty Bill Hoshijo], who took 17 percent of the votes in the race for Congress, and Wayne Nishiki, the current Maui councilman, who won 20 percent in a three-man race for mayor.

The party’s links to Butler and Krishna went unacknowledged until 1977, when Walter Wright of The Honolulu Advertiser did an investigative report on the group, which Hoshijo labeled a “smear attempt.”

In the ’80s and ’90s, Butler appeared in a series of locally filmed shows, titled Jagad Guru Speaks, in which he sermonized on spirituality. In one episode, titled “Is God Really Loveable?” Butler mocks the Bible and the Christian interpretation of God, calling them nonsensical. “These Christians don’t know God,” Butler says. His comments summon laughs and nods of agreement from the room full of listeners. Mike and Carol Gabbard are shown sitting just a few feet away from the charismatic guru, laughing along with the audience.

Gabbard’s wife served as secretary/treasurer of the Science of Identity Foundation until 2000, before she successfully ran for a seat on the state Board of Education. Both Gabbard and his wife were listed as teachers at the Science of Identity Foundation in Polk’s City Directory in the early 1990s.

In the late ’80s and early ’90s, both Gabbards worked as staffers in the office of then Maui state Sen. Rick Reed. A controversial figure himself, Reed has acknowledged Butler as his “spiritual adviser.” Reed mounted short-lived campaigns for both Congress and the lieutenant governorship in 1986. He then ran for U.S. Senate against Daniel Inouye in 1992, setting off a scandal when he publicized claims that Inouye had sexually molested a Honolulu hairdresser named Lenore Kwock.”

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“When HONOLULU asked Gabbard in an e-mail to clarify his former relationship with Butler’s Krishna group, Gabbard’s daughter, state Rep. Tulsi Gabbard Tamayo, sent us an angry e-mail in response. “I smell a skunk,” Tulsi Gabbard wrote. “It’s clear to me that you’re acting as a conduit for The Honolulu Weekly and other homosexual extremist supporters of Ed Case.”

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Tulsi Gabbard
Official 113th Congressional photo of Tulsi Gabbard

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http://talkingpointsmemo.com/muckraker/horrifying-threats-against-congresswoman-tied-to-obscure-hare-krishna-sect

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The nature of Tulsi Gabbard’s ties to Butler’s group are less clear. In its profile of the congresswoman’s father, Honolulu Magazine noted he described himself as Catholic. When Honolulu Magazine asked the elder Gabbard about his ties to Butler’s Hare Krishna sect, the publication said it received a reply from Tulsi Gabbard accusing them of pursuing the story because they opposed her father’s work fighting same-sex marriage.

“I smell a skunk,” Tulsi Gabbard wrote, according to the magazine. “It’s clear to me that you’re acting as a conduit for The Honolulu Weekly and other homosexual extremist supporters of Ed Case.”

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Hare Krishna is based on Hindu scriptures including the Bhagavad Gita. Gabbard describes herself as Hindu and, in January, she was sworn in on the Bhagavad Gita. Gabbard said she chose the book because it led her on a “spiritual journey.”

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“I was raised in a multiracial, multicultural, multi-faith family. My mother is Hindu; my father is a Catholic lector in his church who also practices mantra meditation. I began to grapple with questions of spirituality as a teenager,” Gabbard said, according to the Huffington Post. “Over time, I came to believe that, at its essence, religion gives us a deeper purpose in life than just living for ourselves. Since I was a teenager, I embraced this spiritual journey through the teachings of the Bhagavad Gita.”

Gabbard’s spokeswoman, Heather Fluit, did not respond to a question from TPM Thursday about whether the congresswoman identifies as either a Hare Krishna or a follower of Butler.

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Brené Brown studies fear, shame, and vulnerability

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In Brene Brown’s book The Gifts of Imperfection: Let Go of Who You Think You’re Supposed to Be and Embrace Who You Are, she writes about collecting huge amounts of data about how human lives are shaped by the “struggle with shame and the fear of not being enough” as well as “the power of embracing imperfection and vulnerability.” She then began analyzing the data for common characteristics of people who were resilient in the face of adversity and who were living wholehearted life: “living and loving with their whole hearts.” Emerging out of that huge data set were some clear patterns:

The Do column was brimming with words like worthiness, rest, play, trust, faith, intuition, hope, authenticity, love, belonging, joy, gratitude, and creativity. The Don’t column was dripping with words like perfection, numbing, certainty, exhaustion, self-sufficiency, being cool, fitting in, judgment, and scarcity. (x)

Now, I don’t know what your reaction is to that “Do” and “Don’t” list. But Brown confesses that her initial reaction was horror. She says, “I thought I’d find that Wholehearted people were just like me…: working hard, following the rules, doing it until I got it right, always trying to know myself better, raising my kids exactly by the books…” (xi). But Brown was horrified by the revelation that as a successful professional, she had been formed and rewarded for living almost exclusively by the list of how not to live a wholehearted life, by the list of how to increase the likelihood of reaching the end of your life with many regrets: “perfection, numbing, certainty, exhaustion, self-sufficiency, being cool, fitting in, judgment, and scarcity.” So, she packed up her research and hid it under her bed for a year-and-a-half (xii)!

When you pause and take a step back, you can often see that daily life is a constant reminder of our imperfections and limitations. We are constantly being invited to “let go of who we think we’re supposed to be and embrace who we are,” but often we’re like Brown and shove those invitations under the rug as quickly as possible. In Brown’s words, “The universe is not short on wake-up calls. We’re just quick to hit the snooze button” (xiii).

The UU First Principle affirms, “The inherent worth and dignity of every person.” But often it can be easier for many of us to fight for the rights and recognition of a marginalized group than to fully embrace the inherent worth and dignity of all those hidden parts of our own self: all those imperfect parts that we hope we are hiding from others. As the old saying goes, “Too often we compare our insides to others’ outsides, and we feel inadequate.”

Brown writes, “The greatest challenge for most of us is believing that we are worthy now, right this minute.”

Not I’ll be worthy when I lose twenty pounds, if I can get pregnant, or stay sober. Not I’ll be worthy if everyone thinks I’m a good parent, when I can make a living selling my art, if I can hold my marriage together, when I make partner, when my parents finally approve, if he [or she] calls back…, or when I can do it all and look like I’m not even trying. (24)

On the other side of a lot a research and some important work in therapy during that year-and-a-half in which she had hidden her research under the bed, Brown says that she’s come to be “a recovering perfectionist and an aspiring good-enoughist.” That doesn’t mean that we should stop pursuing excellence. But when you embrace your inherent worth and dignity, then your motivation changes in a vital way. Brown puts it this way, “Healthy striving is self-focused — How can I improve? Perfectionism is other-focused — What will they think? (56). The middle way is perhaps neither the narcissism of exclusive self-interest nor the self-deprecation of acting only for others, but instead knowing your limits and seeking the next best step for both yourself and others.

Leonard Cohen, in the chorus of his song “Anthem,” says that all any of us can ultimately do is “Ring the bells that still can ring / Forget your perfect offering / There is a crack in everything / That’s how the light gets in. That’s how the light gets in. That’s how the light gets in.”

Where are the cracks and imperfections in your life?

How might those places of seeming weakness paradoxically be the most powerful invitations you will ever have in this life to “let go of who you think you’re supposed to be and embrace who you are,” to let go of our culture’s addiction to certainty and the myth of permanent satisfaction — and instead to savor and celebrate the gifts of the life that already have: right here and now.

I will conclude by offering you this blessing from one of my favorite liturgists Jan Richardson. In this life, we all have our different struggles, gifts, and graces:

May you have the vision to recognize the door that is yours,

the Courage to open it,

and the wisdom to walk through. (47)

May it be so, and blessed be.

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In praise of fine actress Eva Green (the evil in us all via her film exposition)   –

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http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/300:_Rise_of_an_Empire

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 http://www.bing.com/images/search?q=images+eva+green+300&qpvt=images+eva+green+300&FORM=IGRE#view=detail&id=706DA4E9D016E317A29959C678F539F4BD1645C8&selectedIndex=6

 

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Condi Rice’s ego over ethos   –

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http://www.nytimes.com/2014/05/18/opinion/sunday/dowd-condis-lesson.html?_r=0

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As Elisabeth Bumiller wrote in her trenchant biography of Rice, “Condoleezza Rice: An American Life”: “It was obvious from Rice’s many metamorphoses that her real ideology was not idealism or realism or defending the citadels of freedom, although she displayed elements of all of them. Her real ideology was succeeding.”

And so, in order to succeed, she rejected her old mentors, Brent Scowcroft and Colin Powell, and went along with the preposterous pre-emption plan of the old hawks who had far less respect for her: Dick Cheney and Donald Rumsfeld.

She knew that W. — eager to show he was not a wimp, the word Newsweek had once hung around his father’s neck — was leaning toward kicking some Arabs around. So she ignored the red flags raised publicly by Scowcroft and privately by Powell and made her Faustian deal to sell a fake war.

We’ll never know if she could have stopped W. from ruining his presidency and destroying so many lives when there was no national security stake.

Continue reading the main storyWrite A Comment

We only know that when you sell your soul, it’s not like a pawnshop. Condi thought she could reclaim it after she was secretary of state and bring W. back to the light of diplomacy and common sense. But, as Russell Baker once noted, she was trying to put the toothpaste back in the tube, spinning her wheels in the second term trying to undo the disasters of the first.

What a wonderful lesson she could have taught those graduates about the perils of succeeding at any cost, about how moral shortcuts never lead to the right place.

She should have said she was sorry about everything — except becoming one of the first two women permitted to join Augusta National.

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http://www.patheos.com/blogs/peterenns/2014/05/people-are-such-absolute-jerks-and-so-can-you/

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Today’s post is an interview with Dr. Chuck DeGrout about his latest book Toughest People to Love: How to Understand, Lead, and Love the Difficult People in Your Life (Including Yourself). Chuck, who has blogged here before (here and here), is the author of Leaving Egypt: Finding God in the Wilderness Places, and co-founder and senior fellow at the Newbigin House of Studies, a partnership between City Church San Francisco (where he has served as a teaching pastor) and Western Theological Seminary (where he is Associate Professor of Pastoral Care and Counseling). He has also served as a professor and Director of Spiritual Formation at Reformed Theological Seminary (Orlando).

Let’s get one thing off the table, shall we…did my family and/or friends beg you to write this book?

Though I receive lots of letters and late night phone calls from your family and friends asking for help in their dark night of knowing you, this book is not about Pete Enns! Truthfully, I asked the Twittersphere what I should write, and received dozens of messages back asking for a book on this very topic.

Pastors, in particular, asked for an accessible guide to understanding the complicated human soul, with clear application for some of messiest people we encounter. But I’ve written the book to be accessible to anyone who leads or loves or simply hopes to better understand the complicated, difficult people in their lives.

Can you describe your basic approach to understanding people?

I see the first pages of Scripture telling our story–a story of people both beautiful and broken, a story of deep longing and intimate love twisted into distorted forms, manifesting in shame and hiddenness. It’s a story we live each day. We are people capable of extraordinary compassion, on the one hand, and sinister manipulation on the other. Sometimes, I think we’re surprised by how complex we are.

What I explain in the book is that early on in our lives we recognize the need to cope with the broken world we’ve been birthed into. Our earliest relationships are key to this, but our parents and caregivers aren’t perfect, right? We cope as best we can, but the relational strategies we develop early on become constitutive of our adult patterns of relating.

What Christians call “sin” and what psychologists call “psychopathology” put words to the disordered and dysfunctional ways of relating.

Sin is usually understood as “bad behavior.” What do you mean by “style of relating?”

Early Christian theologians saw sin in a more complex way than we do. If you define simply as bad behavior, it makes the solution seem simple–just behave better! Early Christians used the word “passion” to describe sin, and the “passions” were understood relationally.

You see, these early theologians believed that you and I were created in and for desire–good and beautiful desire for God, for love, for beauty, for union.

Sin was understood as twisted desire. Instead of desiring God, we desire a God-substitute. We look for satisfaction in false gods. We become intimate with these imitation gods. And they betray us, causing us to suffer (thus, the Latin word “passions”). The 7 deadly passions can be understood as relational sufferings–ways in which we sabotage the life for which we’ve been made for something less.

And psychology took its cue from this early Christian framework?

I do think that the categories we use as psychologists can be understood through this lens. And this is what I attempt to do. I’m quite comfortable with the contemporary psychological insights accumulated over the last century or so, but I’m also mindful that Christians live under a different Story, and that our Story helps makes sense of the data we’re gathering.

For instance, we’re all familiar with the term “narcissism.” One psychologist says that “the narcissist’s personality is based on a defensive false self that he must keep inflated, like a balloon, in order not to feel the underlying rage and depression associated with an inadequate, fragmented sense of self.”

That defensive false self is what I see as distorted desire, a faulty and dysfunctional way of relating to God and others, which ultimately undermines a person’s happiness. Perhaps, it manifests in the deadly passion of “pride,” a way of being and relating which may look confident on the outside, but which reveals deep insecurity, fear, and shame at the core.

Your model of understanding people engenders compassion. Why should we be compassionate when these people hurt us?

I get that. I’ve received the Monday morning emails with scathing reviews of my sermon. I’ve been confronted, accused, gossiped about, undermined, plotted against, and more. If you want to avoid these things, avoid any leadership. I’ve also been pastoring and counseling and leading long enough to know that every person has a story.

Brokenness and sin don’t happen in a vacuum. As I said, people learn very early on how to cope, and these ways of surviving and coping and self-protecting take on forms that hurt us. In time, I think we learn to show compassion to the broken and wounded soul behind the manipulative and hurtful external strategies.

Within every bully is a frightened little boy. And with that realization, I can show compassion while at the same time challenging and confronting the relational style. In the book, I talk about how this plays out with addicts, with narcissists, with obsessive compulsives and histrionics–the kinds of people leaders most struggle with.

In the last section, you turn your attention to the pastor/leader. Why did you include this portion in a book devoted to leading and loving others?

I’m convinced that we’ve got to put the oxygen masks on ourselves before we help others. To the extent that we identify our own inner darkness, we’ll be able to care for others. I’m convinced that Fr. Richard Rohr is right, that we’ve got to become adept at shadow-boxing, looking at the dark shadows we cast before pointing to the darkness of others.

Jesus said it well–“Remove the log in your own eye.” But how? I walk through this process in some detail, adding some of my own story and struggle to the mix.

How is this book different from other self-help books out there?

Because it’s not a self-help book.

There is no recipe for helping an ailing soul, not 3 steps or 7 principles. We are “fearfully and wonderfully made,” which means that we’re not puzzles to be solved but mysteries to be approached.

This book isn’t a “how-to” book, but I do hope it is a “wisdom” book. To the extent that we risk entering into the lives of difficult people, let alone our own, we’ll find ourselves more and more reliant on the deep Wisdom of a God who became one of us in order to love and redeem us. And that’s where all good “helping” begins.

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ego over ethos?  –  (ding a ling?) John Lindell’s postulate  as a self-proclaimed saint

Are Saints Sinners?

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http://www.letusreason.org/doct49.htm

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 It is not that we no longer sin but that we are no longer slaves to sin (Rom.6:16-18, 20).

Sanctification is the process of working Christ’s nature in us daily to be more like him.

This would not be necessary if we had sin removed —  we would already be like Jesus. There are many heretical teachings that distort this and other key elements in the Scripture and teach this is a fulfilled promise to us already; it is NOT.

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ego over ethos  — belligerent proselytizers

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http://www.patheos.com/blogs/peterenns/2014/05/tullian-tchividjian-the-gospel-coalition-and-a-rather-obvious-theology-problem/

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The resurgence of Reformed theology in American evangelicalism and fundamentalism–commonly referred to as the Neo-Reformed movement–is a belligerent movement. This is why it exists–to correct others, not to turn the spotlight inward. There are exceptions within, of course, and I am by no means suggesting everyone who sees him or herself as part of this movement exhibits this tendency. But the “system” is set up to fight. It’s what they do.

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So don’t be shocked if it happens to you. Yesterday’s heroes can quickly become tomorrow’s vanquished foes. When “contending for the gospel” is your center of gravity, there’s always a foe. There has to be.

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Christians who can’t seem to walk away from a fight–who seem uncomfortable in a peace vacuum, who feel the gospel is at stake with nearly every perceived errant thought or difference of opinion, and who feel they need to group together and found organizations to protect the truth against all ungodly attacks–are showing us what their God is like.

If you are a fighter, chances are the God you imagine is:

fundamentally hacked off, retributive, touchy, demanding of theological precision, uncompromising, takes-no-prisoners-and-gives-no-quarter, whose wrath needs to be appeased so watch your step.

If that’s your God, you have full permission–in fact, you are commanded– to fight a lot, especially with other Christians–a modern day Phinehas weeding out the covenant breakers among us (Numbers 25), God’s instrument of retribution.

Whether or not we are even aware of it, how we act reflects what we deeply believe. In fact, as Christians, there is no truer measure of what we really believe God is like, deep down, the God that really drives us and energizes us, our life source, than how quickly we feel the need to erect walls and continually narrow the boarders of who is in and who is out.

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ego over ethos — negative role model Larry Summers

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http://baselinescenario.com/2014/06/09/larry-summers-should-keep-his-mouth-shut/#more-11005

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Larry Summers Should Keep His Mouth Shut

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By James Kwak

Larry Summers is well on his way to rehabilitating his public image as a brilliant intellectual, moving on from his checkered record as president of Harvard University and as President Obama’s chief economic adviser during the first years of the administration. Unfortunately, he can’t resist taking on his critics—and he can’t do it without letting his debating instincts take over.

I was reading his review of House of Debt by Mian and Sufi. Everything seemed reasonable until I got to this passage justifying the steps taken to bail out the financial system:

“The government got back substantially more money than it invested. All of the senior executives who created these big messes were out of their jobs within a year. And stockholders lost 90 per cent or more of their investments in all the institutions that required special treatment by the government.”

I have no doubt that every word in this passage is true in some meaninglessly narrow sense or other. But on the whole it is simply false.

 

Yes, the government got back more money than it invested, if you are looking solely at TARP disbursements. But if Larry Summers evaluates his own investments that way, then he should find someone else to manage his money. The government systematically bought preferred stock in banks for more than it was worth, and it sold assets guarantees to banks for less than they were worth. The fact that it got lucky doesn’t mean those weren’t bad investments.

For example, the government guaranteed a pool of assets owned by Bank of America for something like $5 billion plus warrants. Six months later, after the worst of the crisis passed, Bank of America decided it no longer needed the insurance and wanted out of the deal; Treasury let them out for a payment of $425 million. Larry Summers counts that as a good deal, since Treasury netted $425 million. But that just means they got lucky. By that logic, Summers could sell earthquake insurance on California homes for $10 per year and call himself a genius after one year without an earthquake. Treasury should have collected the difference between the value of the insurance when the deal was struck and when Bank of American wanted out, which would have been a whole lot more than $425 million.

If that’s confusing, there’s an even easier way to think about it. TARP made its first round of investments on Monday, October 13, 2008. As of November 21 last year, TARP was about to turn a paper profit, at least according to the Treasury Department, getting $432 billion back on $422 billion in investments. That’s a 2.4% total return over more than five years, or an annualized return of less than 0.5%. If the government had instead put its money into the stock market on Friday, October 10, 2008, it would have earned a total return of 132% over the same period, or more than 18.3% per year. If Treasury had simply used TARP to buy 5-year Treasury bonds and held them to maturity, it would have earned an annual yield of 2.8%. In short the government only got back “substantially more than it invested” if you ignore the time value of money and risk.

Next, Summers says, “All of the senior executives who created these big messes were out of their jobs within a year.” I’m sure he has a list of the “senior executives” who “created these big messes.” Maybe it includes Chuck Prince (Citigroup), Angelo Mozilo (Countrywide), Dick Fuld (Lehman), and Martin Sullivan (AIG), all of whom were actually gone before Summers showed up on the scene. Maybe it includes Ken Lewis (Bank of America), who left at the end of 2009. But it must not include Jamie Dimon, Lloyd Blankfein, Vikram Pandit, and dozens of other “senior executives,” since there’s little indication that the administration made any effort to force anyone out, except at AIG, where the Bush administration pushed aside the placeholder who had replaced Sullivan.

Finally, “stockholders lost 90 per cent or more of their investments in all the institutions that required special treatment by the government.” Summers must have a pretty narrow definition of “special treatment.” Here’s the Goldman stock price from its 2007 peak to today:

Screen Shot 2014-06-09 at 11.41.38 AM

There’s no 90% fall in there no matter where you look.

But even if you say Goldman didn’t get “special treatment” (OK, come on—what else do you call the emergency transformation into a bank holding company and the back-door bailout through government-controlled AIG?), this is Bank of America, which did get the extra bailout in January 2009:

Screen Shot 2014-06-09 at 11.45.08 AMThis time there is a 90% fall, but only if you go from October 2007 to March 2009—which means it only applies to shareholders who sold at the bottom. But what does that 90% fall mean, anyway? On January 16, 2009, when Bank of America got its special bailout, its stock was worth $8.32 (that’s the previous day’s close). The stock had already lost most of its value, which is what is supposed to happen when a company blows up. Its price was only distinguishable from zero because of option value predicated on the possibility of a government bailout. The government delivered on the bailout, and although the stock fell to a low of $3.14, by the end of the year it was up to $15.06. In other words, from the point where the government gave Bank of America “special treatment,” its stock almost doubled in less than a year.

All of this is before I got to the real howler, where Summers says he was in favor of mortgage cramdown and that it was rejected for political reasons. But Adam Levitin already called Summers on this blatant attempt to rewrite history, so I’ll let him take care of that one. I’ll just add that Summers claims the administration didn’t pursue cramdown because it didn’t have the votes, while prior reporting has indicated that the Obama economic team was against it in principle.

If Larry Summers could just keep quiet, someday people will think of him as a respected elder statesman (hey, it happened to Ronald Reagan and even Henry Kissinger). But if he continues trying to prove that he was right about everything that every happened in the universe, it isn’t going to happen.

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pastors — “epic” (because they’re pastors) yet ordinary of the flesh “fail”    –

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http://www.patheos.com/blogs/peterenns/2014/06/most-pastors-are-failures-and-its-ok/

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With candid vulnerability, Briggs explores the landscape of failure, how it devastates us and how it transforms us. Without offering pat answers or quick fixes, he challenges our cultural expectations of success and gives us permission to grieve our losses. Somehow, in the midst of our pain, we are better positioned to receive the grace of healing and restoration.

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ethos over ego?

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http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Eric_Cantor#2014_Republican_primary

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Eric Cantor’s loss at the primary was described by the Los Angeles Times as “one of the greatest political upsets of modern times.”   In the June 10, 2014, Republican primary, despite internal campaign polls placing him 30 points ahead of his opponent and his spending advantage (Cantor outspent Brat 40 to 1), Cantor lost to Tea Party challenger Dave Brat in an major upset. This made him the first sitting House majority leader to lose a primary since the position was created in 1899.

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http://www.cnn.com/2014/06/11/opinion/kohn-cantor-conventional-wisdom/

Cantor had largely abandoned his constituents in favor of growing his national profile.

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http://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/kathleen-parker-dont-read-any-tea-leaves-about-cantors-loss/2014/06/13/d59a9062-f337-11e3-bf76-447a5df6411f_story.html

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Brat, in other words, isn’t quite ready for the prime-time slot he’s expected to win in November. But he had something Cantor didn’t have — a ground game. Brat’s lack of political sophistication served him well. Instead of watching polls, he knocked on doors. As for Cantor, the polls showed him winning, so why bother to press flesh?

Here’s another reality check: It’s always about the ground game.

This is the real lesson of Cantor’s stunning defeat.

Sometimes a loser is just a loser.

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Abercrombie’s ethos over HSTA (Okabe) ego

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http://www.hsta.org/index.php/news/teachers-union-backs-ige-over-abercrombie-for-governor

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Abercrombie enraged the teachers union in 2011 when he unilaterally imposed the state’s last, best and final contract offer with a 5 percent pay cut after negotiations with the union had broken down. The union unsuccessfully fought the governor’s move in court and before the Hawaii Labor Relations Board. Last year the state and the teachers union agreed to a four-year contract that includes pay raises and a more equitable split on health insurance premiums. The deal also created new evaluations that tie teacher pay to student performance. Abercrombie’s allies have noted that Hawaii, unlike many states, did not force teacher layoffs during the recession. Teachers instead took furloughs and pay cuts to help the state close projected budget deficits.

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HSTA has opposed Abercrombie’s call for a constitutional amendment in November that would allow public money to be spent on private preschool. The governor wants the option to expand his early childhood education initiative to cover all of the state’s 4-year-olds. The union wants preschool expansion to take place at public schools — with public school teachers — and has supported the governor’s more targeted proposal for preschool at 30 public schools statewide. Ige has not taken a position on the constitutional amendment, but has said that the state should focus on existing preschool and child-care programs rather than embark on a new preschool initiative.

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Cayetano also fought HSTA  http://www.hawaiifreepress.com/ArticlesMain/tabid/56/ID/8085/Hirono-Joins-HSTA-Protest-Against-Abercrombie.aspx  but supports Ige http://www.ilind.net/2014/06/05/cayetano-email-boosts-ige/,  who has HSTA’s endorsement.   Cayetano’s excuses are that Abercrombie has not been tough enough in negotiations with the state’s public worker unions and that Abercrombie has been too lenient allowing large high-rise developments to get approvals in Kakaako.   http://www.hawaiinewsnow.com/story/24005156/cayetano-drops-support-for-abercrombie-backs-ige

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Cayetano never emulated Dan Inouyehttp://www.civilbeat.com/2012/11/17575-honolulu-mayor-general-election-2012/ ,  yet opposed Abercrombie’s pick of Schatz to replace deceased Inouye (Dem Party’s emasculated symbolized by Carpenter submitted 3 names for Abercrombie to pick to succeed Inouye — Inouye’s Hanabusa/Abercrombie’s Schatz/Abercrombie’s available non-winning political candidate Kia’aina) .   Abercrombie chafed at Inouye’s nod for Mufi to be our nation’s 1st Samoan governor, vs. Abercrombie, despite Abercrombie’s nearly 2 decade servile obedience to Inouye on Capitol Hill.    Inouye was into ethnic pride, not haole rabble-rouser Abercrombie’s surrender to Inouye.   Esther Kia’aina is Abercrombie’s hack choice reward for Dept. of Interior post.    Status quo Waihe’e backs Schatz, who is more current (not deceased Inouye) Capitol Hill establishment than Hanabusa.   President Obama never had Inouye’s endorsement, so President Obama backs Schatz.

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Borot/overproud Cayetano feels that Abercrombie doesn’t  agree with Cayetano, so Cayetano goes against Abercrombie (& Abercrombie’s little boy Schatz).   Twiddle-dum/twiddle-dee.

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Spineless wimp George Ariyoshi never was roughouser corrupt mammon Inouye’s kozo/understudy/prodigy.   Yet, twiddle-dum twiddle-dee Ariyoshi also a negative exemplar — predicatable risk -averse mammon Ariyoshi always supports the status quo, in this case union/big money plunderer little boy Ige over Abercrombie.  Ariyoshi has “pull” (AJA)  with Hanabusa, not Schatz.  Ariyoshi is Larry Mehau’s hack wimp, Mehau formerly of Hilo’s Kapi’olani Elem. School (& Ululani & Ponahawai St. block/also of Ocean View Drive at Baker’s Beach by Hilo Harbor), Mehau former mediator between warring factions of mob underworld (Mehau wide-body Kanaka, former cop who thrives w/ underworld mentality-subculture).   Mehau esp. became publicly prominent when fellow Kanaka Pulawa took mob control (over Leota, w/contempos Huihui/Kaohu/Wilson/Ryder/etc.).   Pulawa too rough/allegedly toughed-juiced too much the payor businesses, which is why relative-ly fabric softeners like Korean Kim stayed in business.   Former strongarm Jeffrey Kealoha (but the Wakinekona types not alleged monsters, so to speak)  allegedly as conscience-less as they came, not to say that others were not conscience-less (such as Ronald Ching http://www.hawaiinewsnow.com/story/3866352/underworld-hitman-ronald-ching-dies-in-prison/etc.).     Ariyoshi fancied himself a toughie too via Kanaka Mehau.  Did Mehau know of Li’i’s impending murder, one rhetorically asks?  Ex-boxer Li’i bucked the goons, so to speak.    Mob had guys like Kaohu’s Ahlo to overcome tough-as-nails Benny Madamba.   Other than toughness, there’s no correlation at all between Li’i & Madamba.    I’m just referring to granite chins.     Russ Huelsman allegedly was among the “coldest” ever to be in HCCC (Hilo).    I say that Kohala’s Ed Neves was the strongest ever I saw  — superhuman in “pupule” warp drive  — snapped apart handcuffs like they were pretzel, pulled up the toilet bowl off its bolts on the floor, etc.   Stronger than Ahlo.    Sol Haleaumau (Sol Boy of Pua rd. in Wainaku) on the same level as Ahlo when Sol Boy also was in “pupule” warp drive.

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ethos over ego   –

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http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/06/11/rick-warren-ministry_n_5480409.html?utm_hp_ref=religion

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Warren’s son, Matthew, 27, who suffered from mental illness, killed himself five days after Easter in 2013.

“If your brain doesn’t work right and you take a pill, why are you supposed to be ashamed of that?” Warren asked. “It’s just an organ, and we have to remove that stigma.”

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In pastoring, “the more intense the pain, the fewer words you should use,” he said. “You need to show up and shut up.”

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“Your greatest ministry will come out of your deepest hurt,” he said. “We mistakenly think that the world is impressed by how we handle prosperity, but the fact is the world is impressed by how we handle adversity.”

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ethos over ego   — redskin means bloodied dead American Indian as reward payment to bounty hunter

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http://www.huffingtonpost.com/wray-herbert/redskin-psychology-the-or_b_5485370.html?utm_hp_ref=science

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These intriguing findings illuminate the origins of tidy stereotypes out of random information, and may be useful in comprehending the origin of derogatory caricatures like “redskin.” But the findings also suggest that, once a given stereotype becomes simplistic enough, it tends to become fixed — and to continue on unchanged. That’s the point at which people have to confront and challenge their own biases, as Washington football fans seem finally poised to do.

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military ego over ethos   –

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http://www.washingtonpost.com/world/national-security/if-we-want-to-help-figure-out-iraqs-future-we-must-understand-its-fractured-past/2014/06/16/cc66dd30-f3d6-11e3-914c-1fbd0614e2d4_story.html

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U.S. military power, particularly bombing alone, cannot wipe out Iraq’s bloody history, nor can it remake Middle Eastern borders.

If Obama is again to support a Baghdad regime, it must be after — not before — its leaders prove they represent that country’s various groups.

Watch what they do, not what they promise to do, should be Obama’s mantra.

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ego over ethos

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http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sand_Creek_massacre#Attack

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ethos over ego — in praise of Margaret Fuller & our greatest heroes

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http://www.patheos.com/blogs/carlgregg/2014/06/margaret-fuller-the-stories-we-tell-matter/      

Margaret Fuller

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http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Belva_Ann_Lockwood

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http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jim_Bridger   

Sculpture of Bridger

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http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jeb_Stuart   

A young Stuart

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http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_Mosby    (WWII Patton’s hero)     ColonelJohnSMosbyPortrait.jpg

“The Gray Ghost”    John Mosby

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Jocelyn Bell      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t-4e93q1NdI

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vs.   egotist Martin Ryle

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Mira aka Kanadajin

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HycOAcWSENg

 

 

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ego over ethos — reprehensible Dick/Liz Cheney   –

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http://www.washingtonpost.com/world/national-security/dick-cheney-wants-to-forget-history-and-write-his-own-version/2014/06/19/9accbaaa-f71a-11e3-a3a5-42be35962a52_story.html

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In contrast to the Cheneys, people should listen to former secretary of state James Baker III, who in Thursday’s Wall Street Journal called on the United States to organize an international coalition of regional countries, including Iran. Recalling Iran’s cooperation on Afghanistan, Baker said today’s “reality is that Iran is already the most influential external player in Iraq and so any effort without Iranian participation will likely fail.”

Baker has a successful track record and a memory. The Cheneys have neither.

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ego or ethos?     “Who is the antichrist, Pope Francis, or perhaps Judas Iscariot resurrected???”      Is Alan Lamont about  ego??   http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ij4_FunDcdE

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Christian_eschatological_views

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ethos   –

http://www.patheos.com/blogs/peterenns/2014/07/aha-moments-biblical-scholars-tell-their-stories-4-michael-pahl/

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During those early days of reading the Bible in large swaths, I found Jesus, and that makes all the difference: paradoxically, the Bible matters less even as it matters all the more.

And second, along the way, even in the strictest of conservative environments, I always found people who gave me space to ask hard questions and avoid simplistic answers—because they themselves were in that space. It’s a dangerous place, that risky grace of a humble search for truth.

I’m grateful to those who have created those “dangerous places” for me in my life, even at great risk to themselves—and I’m committed to providing that same space of grace for others.

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ego, ethos, both     –

*   http://web.archive.org/web/20130917203737/http://www.forbes.com/2005/07/28/cx_bizmanslide.html?thisSpeed=35000

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http://www.forbes.com/sites/tomwatson/2014/06/30/what-makes-people-generous-charity-empathy-and-story-telling/

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The findings indicate that charitable organizations marketing their causes “need to be cautious when describing the beneficiaries that they support, particularly if the recipient could be perceived as responsible for their plight and, by extension, undeserving.”

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The study explores answers to critical questions in five key areas: strategy, capacity, content, platforms and evaluation. It suggests tools and resources needed to help organizations elevate the practice and impact of digital storytelling.

Some of the quotes in the report are striking. “The closer to the ground you get, the better,” said one funder. “It’s not to say that the community tells the story best, but I believe strongly that the stories should be coming from as close as possible to the people who are being impacted by your programs.” Exactly – the work in the field matters. Said a nonprofit leader: “Co-creation is key. People on the ground should be in charge of developing the stories themselves so that they can decide what parts of their story get told. The end result is a much richer perspective.”

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ego over ethos

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http://punapono.com/docs/eddocs/2.pdf

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There is strong evidence that geothermal wells have produced earthquakes.

In Basel, Switzerland, there were upwards

of 10,000 earthquakes measuring up to

3.4 on the Richter Scale within days after

a nearby geothermal plant started its

water injection program. It was shut

down after a study determined that the

earthquakes were likely to cause

millions of dollars in damage each year.

Alta Rock Energy abandoned its venture

in the Geysers, Wild Horse area of

California, after the area experienced

quakes associated with geothermal

production. Geothermal production

areas in Mammoth Lakes, California have

also experienced ‘swarms’ of quakes.

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In Poho’iki we have Ormat (fka PGV) & its unstable geothermal plant.

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Here is a recent report of underground instability caused by man   -

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http://www.latimes.com/science/sciencenow/la-sci-sn-oklahoma-earthquakes-fracking-science-20140703-story.html

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Researchers from Cornell University and the University of Colorado say a large swarm of earthquakes in central Oklahoma was probably caused by activity at a few highly active disposal wells, where wastewater from drilling operations — including hydraulic fracturing — is forced into deep geological formations for storage.

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I tell my 41 yr. old daughter this morning (summer vacation for kids)  that I can take her kids/my grandkids to the mall (to give her a breather from being mom to 4 rambunctious mo’opuna).   She says no, she’ll take them to the Olympic pool for apparently preset swimming lessons.   I laugh.   She asks me, “What’s so funny about me taking the kids to the pool?”   I tell her, “You got a schedule.   You love them.”    She looks at me curiously with her head tilted slightly.       I am so joyous for having such a wonderful daughter who is a great mom to her kids.    Ethos.     So as I drive into town,  I turn to radio a.m. (not f.m.)  kipa 670 on the dial   — old foggies’ talk radio station which my dad used to listen to in his car.    And I laugh   — geez, I’m now an old codger like my most loving greatest dad in the world   — my dad (who was old enough to be my tutu/grandpa  — 40 yrs. older than me).   “Rite of passage,”  “role reversal” via aging thru generational stages.    Emotional/physical maturity.     Pololei (balance).    Ethos.

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http://www.reviewjournal.com/columns-blogs/steven-kalas/join-seekers-and-find-clarity-humanity-understanding

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See, we’re born with “an energy.” That energy is our type/temperament. It’s based not in nurture, but in nature. It’s the way we’re wired from the start. It’s in our neurology. It frames how we see the world, how we move through the world, and how we see ourselves and each other.

Don’t believe me? Ask parents with more than one offspring. They will tell you, every time. As early as 6-12 months of the second child’s life, parents will testify with no little amazement that these two children — same genetic origins, same house, nursing the same breast and eating the same Cheerios in the same environment — are different. Way different.

Perhaps one is studious, serious, reflective and absorbed. The other is climbing the drapes and expressing fragments of emotion like a popcorn popper spewing exploding kernels.

You can’t escape this energy. Or ever truly change it. You can ignore it, deny it … or embrace it. Learn about it. Find its strengths and inherent genius. Revel in those. Bless the world. Become an expert in your type/temperament vulnerabilities.

Know the shadow side. The patterns that thwart your happiness, not to mention make you a maddening, high-maintenance pain in the keister (and heart) to those who are trying to love you.

A seeker suspends judgment, and decides to awaken to a conscious life. We stop merely acting and reacting. Rather, we decide to be present to ourselves. To pay attention to personal and interpersonal habits of human interaction. Now, awake and conscious, we have choices. Choices! Choices for more meaningful, satisfying, productive and creative living.

Can I tell you how I admire the people in this room? How my heart surges with inspiration and hope as I watch them, one by one, brave the naked vulnerability required to see themselves as they really are, then share that authentic, perfectly flawed and wonderously imperfect self with the room?

Words fail me. I know that because I just tried to look up the word “wonderously” in the Oxford English Dictionary. Apparently I made it up.

I cannot recommend this way of life — awake, conscious, responsible, accountable and growing — more highly. We owe it to ourselves. And to each other. When I make more room in the universe for myself, I naturally have more room in my universe for you.

Of course, enneagram studies aren’t the only modality and resource for such a journey. But, if after reading this you are curious, then you’re invited to look into it. I commend you to the good folks at www.enneagramlasvegas.com. They meet regularly to learn and support one another on this courageous, rigorous and noble road of becoming a whole and healthy human being. Or try Stillpointe Center for Spiritual Development (www.stillpointcsd.org).

I return to Las Vegas filled with hope and energy. I have this “you-can-run-but-you-can’t-hide” voice in my head, but this time the voice inspires rather than threatens.

This is the self my Maker made. I’m not a mistake. Neither are you.

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Brainwashed (USSR propaganda) Oksana Boyko  –

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5 Responses to I have this other, relentless, competing identity, too. A “sin” nature entitled, hedonistic, self-preserving, frequently aggrandized, capable of blithe selfishness and disturbing disregard. The unvarnished, unedited, undefended, unexplained unjustified, often unlovely truth. — Steven Kalas

  1. Pingback: Nobody comes to therapy who hasn’t lost something. The heart is injured. Limping. Constrained by psychic adhesions. Aching, either obviously or just behind the curtain of consciousness. The therapeutic relationship is the MRI. It reveals what’s torn.

  2. Pingback: Nobody comes to therapy who hasn’t lost something. The heart is injured. Limping. Constrained by psychic adhesions. Aching, either obviously or just behind the curtain of consciousness. The therapeutic relationship is the MRI. It reveals what’s torn.

  3. Pingback: Nobody comes to therapy who hasn’t lost something. The heart is injured. Limping. Constrained by psychic adhesions. Aching, either obviously or just behind the curtain of consciousness. The therapeutic relationship is the MRI. It reveals what’s torn.

  4. Pingback: Nobody comes to therapy who hasn’t lost something. The heart is injured. Limping. Constrained by psychic adhesions. Aching, either obviously or just behind the curtain of consciousness. The therapeutic relationship is the MRI. It reveals what’s torn.

  5. Pingback: To love and to be loved are mystical desires a la Carl Jung’s archetypes (Jung’s forebearers were mystics Plato, Apostle Paul, & Augustine) | Curtis Narimatsu

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