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Daily Archives: July 16, 2014

The summer day

I rarely re-blog twice in one day, but I cannot help myself. This could easily be my favourite poem. It fits right up there with a quote by Parker Palmer I carry close to my heart: “Who is the self that teaches [and lives this life].” The last line of the poem asks the same question: “What is it [I] plan to with with [my] one wild and precious life?” Take care on the day’s quest.

Dr Bill Wooten

“Who made the world?
Who made the swan, and the black bear?
Who made the grasshopper?
This grasshopper, I mean the one who is
eating sugar out of my hand,
who is moving her jaws back and forth
instead of up and down –
who is gazing around with her
enormous and complicated eyes.
Now she lifts her pale forearms
and thoroughly washes her face.
Now she snaps her wings open, and floats away.
I don’t know exactly what a prayer is.
I do know how to pay attention, how to fall into the grass,
how to kneel down in the grass, how to be idle and blessed,
how to stroll through the fields,
which is what I have been doing all day.
Tell me, what else should I have done?
Doesn’t everything die at last, and too soon?
Tell me, what is it you plan to do
with your…

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Can one really teach what one does not know?

I feel humbled in comparison. The idea of walking in another’s shoes comes to life in this story. It is more than a story. It is what Levinas called substitution for the Other, the ultimate taking responsibility and empathy.

Shechaim's News of the Day

Local teacher living homeless for month talks to WFTV

Can one really teach what one does not know?

If you have really been reading my postings about my people you know the answer.

http://www.wftv.com/news/news/local/local-teacher-living-homeless-month-talks-wftv/nggKf/

Did this moving story give you any ideas?

Leave it to a teacher to put a little sanity into a politically corrupt state.

Before you read this, think about a law stating that any government official or one thinking of becoming a government official spend a minimum of 3 days in this teachers shoes!

“What’s it like? It is horrible,” Rebman said.

It’s been just 11 days since the Orange County teacher started his homelessness project.

“Here we are 11 days in and I have less than $2 in my pocket. I really don’t know how my days are going to go. I thought it wouldn’t be this difficult as it’s been,” Redman said.

“People demean…

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Love After Love

Derek Walcott wrote this wonderful poem about celebrating life. He suggested we greet ourselves offering hospitality as we realize that we let other things take the place of getting to know the person who was us.

The poem describes a wonderful (wonder filled) companionship in the second stanza. Companionship is sharing meals as we sojourn. Journey is the daily, perhaps moment-to-moment work we do while sojourning. Jacques Derrida drew on an Algerian-French-Jewish background in writing about greeting the stranger, but I don’t know if he meant ourselves.

I considered this today as I prepared a presentation. The world speaks to us and we speak to it, but are we listening as the conversation unfolds? It is in listening to our self that we make sense of the world and it in turn makes sense of us.

The time will come
when, with elation
you will greet yourself arriving
at your own door, in your own mirror
and each will smile at the other’s welcome,

and say, sit here. Eat.
You will love again the stranger who was your self.
Give wine. Give bread. Give back your heart
to itself, to the stranger who has loved you

all your life, whom you ignored
for another, who knows you by heart.
Take down the love letters from the bookshelf,

the photographs, the desperate notes,
peel your own image from the mirror.
Sit. Feast on your life.

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