My parents’ marriage


My parents had a really happy marriage.  They met and fell in love in a Seventh-Day Adventist (SDA) high school in Los Angeles.   Basically good and good-looking, outdoorsy, kids, they rebelled against their church’s strict rules against drinking, smoking, and pre-marital sex.  Before they got hitched, at the frighteningly young ages of 21 and … More My parents’ marriage

Gamble Everything for Love


The Sufi poet Rumi (1207-1273) ,who was known as Jalāl ad-Dīn Muhammad Balkhī (Persian: جلال‌الدین محمد بلخى‎) and Mawlānā/Molānā  (Persian: مولانا‎) wrote: Gamble everything for love, if you’re a true human being. If not, leave this gathering. Half-heartedness doesn’t reach into majesty.  You set out to find God, but then you keep stopping for long periods at mean-spirited roadhouses.

What love does for you


Life is going fairly well at the moment.  I’m so happy, in fact, that I haven’t once descended in my usual grinchy, grumpy pre-Christmas mood.  Christians insisting on coercing or manipulating or guilting me and all other Americans into celebrating the holidays as THEY insist you should, believing in the same implausible theories about the … More What love does for you

Of Gods and Humans


I’m watching Of Gods and Men.  It’s about a group of French Trappist monks who chose to stay in their community rather than flee to safety during the Algerian civil war.  They were kidnapped in 1995 by terrorists, but their death was never explained.  Some have argued that Algerian soldiers killed them during a botched rescue … More Of Gods and Humans

Pittsburgh to Doha


I’m taking my son, Brendan, to Nepal, for two months this summer.   At first he was really excited, but now he tells me that he does not quite understand why he feels so miserable about leaving the United States and going to teach English in a Buddhist monastery.  He worries that he will not know … More Pittsburgh to Doha

Bikram Day 96: WTF?


One day while carrying out some business, the Mullah Nasruddin was asked to show his identification.  He directly pulled out a mirror from his pocket and soberly studied his reflection for a long time.  At length he exclaimed, “Yes, that is me!” I have to say that meeting this challenge is the by far the … More Bikram Day 96: WTF?

Writing


Well, this is a relief.  I’ve had two good days in touch with my so-called real self: the scholar-writer person. I’ve been wondering about this particular persona for a while, since she’s been so out of touch.  Did she still live, after all this time?  Could we still talk, hang out?  Would it feel the … More Writing

Writing


Well, this is a relief.  I’ve had two good days in touch with my so-called real self, the scholar-writer person. I’ve been wondering about this particular persona for a while, since she’s been so out of touch.  Did she still live, after all this time?  Could we still talk, hang out?  Would it feel the … More Writing