Anger, Forgiveness and What Maturity Really Means

Anger truly felt at its center is the essential living flame of being fully alive and fully here; it is a quality to be followed to its source, to be prized, to be tended, and an invitation to finding a way to bring that source fully into the world through making the mind clearer and more generous, the heart more compassionate and the body larger and strong enough to hold it.

“A creature without any needs would never have reasons for fear, or grief, or hope, or anger.” Anger, indeed, is one of the emotions we judge most harshly — in others, as well as in ourselves — and yet understanding anger is central to mapping out the landscape of our interior lives. Aristotle, in planting the civilizational seed for practical wisdom, recognized this when he asked not whether anger is “good” or “bad” but how it shall be used: directed at whom, manifested how, for how long and to what end.

ANGER is the deepest form of compassion, for another, for the world, for the self, for a life, for the body, for a family and for all our ideals, all vulnerable and all, possibly about to be hurt. Stripped of physical imprisonment and violent reaction, anger is the purest form of care, the internal living flame of anger always illuminates what we belong to, what we wish to protect and what we are willing to hazard ourselves for. What we usually call anger is only what is left of its essence when we are overwhelmed by its accompanying vulnerability, when it reaches the lost surface of our mind or our body’s incapacity to hold it, or when it touches the limits of our understanding. What we name as anger is actually only the incoherent physical incapacity to sustain this deep form of care in our outer daily life; the unwillingness to be large enough and generous enough to hold what we love helplessly in our bodies or our mind with the clarity and breadth of our whole being.

What we have named as anger on the surface is the violent outer response to our own inner powerlessness, a powerlessness connected to such a profound sense of rawness and care that it can find no proper outer body or identity or voice, or way of life to hold it. What we call anger is often simply the unwillingness to live the full measure of our fears or of our not knowing, in the face of our love for a wife, in the depth of our caring for a son, in our wanting the best, in the face of simply being alive and loving those with whom we live.

Our anger breaks to the surface most often through our feeling there is something profoundly wrong with this powerlessness and vulnerability… Anger in its pure state is the measure of the way we are implicated in the world and made vulnerable through love in all its specifics.

One need only think of Van Gogh — “I am so angry with myself because I cannot do what I should like to do,” he wrote in a letter as he tussled with mental illness — to appreciate Whyte’s expedition beyond anger’s surface tumults and into its innermost core: profound frustration swelling with a sense of personal failure.

With remarkable intellectual elegance and a sensitivity to the full dimension of the human spirit, Whyte illuminates the vitalizing underbelly of anger:

Anger truly felt at its center is the essential living flame of being fully alive and fully here; it is a quality to be followed to its source, to be prized, to be tended, and an invitation to finding a way to bring that source fully into the world through making the mind clearer and more generous, the heart more compassionate and the body larger and strong enough to hold it. What we call anger on the surface only serves to define its true underlying quality by being a complete but absolute mirror-opposite of its true internal essence.

Strangely, forgiveness never arises from the part of us that was actually wounded. The wounded self may be the part of us incapable of forgetting, and perhaps, not actually meant to forget, as if, like the foundational dynamics of the physiological immune system our psychological defenses must remember and organize against any future attacks — after all, the identity of the one who must forgive is actually founded on the very fact of having been wounded.

Stranger still, it is that wounded, branded, un-forgetting part of us that eventually makes forgiveness an act of compassion rather than one of simple forgetting.

To forgive is to assume a larger identity than the person who was first hurt, to mature and bring to fruition an identity that can put its arm, not only around the afflicted one within but also around the memories seared within us by the original blow and through a kind of psychological virtuosity, extend our understanding to one who first delivered it. Forgiveness is a skill, a way of preserving clarity, sanity and generosity in an individual life, a beautiful way of shaping the mind to a future we want for ourselves; an admittance that if forgiveness comes through understanding, and if understanding is just a matter of time and application then we might as well begin forgiving right at the beginning of any drama rather than put ourselves through the full cycle of festering, incapacitation, reluctant healing and eventual blessing.

To forgive is to put oneself in a larger gravitational field of experience than the one that first seemed to hurt us. We reimagine ourselves in the light of our maturity and we reimagine the past in the light of our new identity, we allow ourselves to be gifted by a story larger than the story that first hurt us and left us bereft.

This question of maturity, so intimately tied to forgiveness, is the subject of another of Whyte’s short essays. Echoing Anaïs Nin’s assertion that maturity is a matter of “unifying” and “integrating,”he writes:

MATURITY is the ability to live fully and equally in multiple contexts; most especially, the ability, despite our grief and losses, to courageously inhabit the past the present and the future all at once. The wisdom that comes from maturity is recognized through a disciplined refusal to choose between or isolate three powerful dynamics that form human identity: what has happened, what is happening now and what is about to occur.

Immaturity is shown by making false choices: living only in the past, or only in the present, or only in the future, or even, living only two out of the three.

Maturity is not a static arrived platform.


Condensed from:

Poet and Philosopher David Whyte on Anger, Forgiveness and What Maturity Really Means

–by Maria Popova, Feb 08, 2016


lots of psychopaths aren’t raging lunatics or violent criminals

images (5)

As Scientific American explains:

Superficially charming, psychopaths tend to make a good first impression on others and often strike observers as remarkably normal. Yet they are self-centered, dishonest and undependable, and at times they engage in irresponsible behavior for no apparent reason other than the sheer fun of it. Largely devoid of guilt, empathy and love, they have casual and callous interpersonal and romantic relationships. Psychopaths routinely offer excuses for their reckless and often outrageous actions, placing blame on others instead. They rarely learn from their mistakes or benefit from negative feedback, and they have difficulty inhibiting their impulses.

in 2001 by Marc Hamer found that superior sales performance was associated with higher levels of narcissism (egocentric and grandiose), sociopathy and cognitive empathy.”

The Cookbook Life — Discover

At The Cookbook Life, architecture student Nikita Kunder shares delicious recipes and photographs so tantalizing, you wonder how they taste.

via The Cookbook Life — Discover

Brightness — STORYTELLER

A little bit of pretty on an almost winter’s day. No snow around here. Just a warm southern storm. When I stopped to make one picture, I prowled around a little and stumbled onto a little patch of wild flowers. What could I do? I did what I always do. I took the picture. I […]

via Brightness — STORYTELLER

große Lüge

I am trying to teach my ten year old not to lie.


How does one do that with this Hitlerian Big Lie guy in the White Haus?

The Uses of Patriotism — Discover by Sam Adler-Bell

“If there’s something contradictory about being a white supremacist and loving America, the people who chanted U-S-A while Donald Trump insulted Muslims and Mexicans haven’t gotten that memo.”

via The Uses of Patriotism — Discover

What is wrong with the world?

The idea that some lives matter less is the root of all that is wrong with the world.

– Paul Farmer –

Do what you can. Ignore the rest.

I will not let what I cannot do interfere with what I can do.

– Edward Everett Hale –

Get Over IT?

I should have voted to take away my own health insurance?


I shouldn’t be offended you voted to take away my health insurance?

A Letter to Vic: A Catholic’s Thoughts On the Election.



I’ll be fine, don’t you worry your little brain troubling yourself about me.


You are right and you know what I will be thinking when I read the gospel from the pulpit and distribute communion. And I will continue to. If you have a problem with that take it to Father John. I would love to tell him what I’m telling you. Hell, go ahead and forward this email to him. I don’t care.


I’m warning you. Don’t come up to me in church. I won’t shake your hand and I may not be able to stop myself from bitch slapping the shit out of you to try to bring you to your senses.  IN CHURCH.


I don’t buy ANYTHING you wrote below. You know nothing about being pro-life.


Your prayers are meaningless words, an empty exercise in futility. God is not listening to you.


The abortion epidemic is proof your prayers are worthless. The Church is obviously failing in it’s mission, the abortion epidemic being my case in point.


Your actions make lies of your prayer. Worry about your own soul. I’ll worry about mine.


God is not listening to you. He is too busy consoling the millions of women who choose to abort babies every year.


God does not stand on the protest lines at the abortion clinics with your ilk. He is walking with the women getting abortions.


Think about it the next time you hear the gospel story of Jesus confronting the mob who wanted to stone the adulteress to death.


Jesus crouched down and drew in the dust and said to the mob, let he who among you is without sin cast the first stone and he went back to drawing in the dust.  When Jesus looked up and saw the mob had dispersed and the woman was standing there Jesus said “No one has condemned you? Then neither do I. Go and sin no more.” Substitute “abortion” for “adultery” and I think Jesus’ message is the same. It’s not for you to judge if Jesus won’t. And He doesn’t.


Keep concentrating on the effect. Don’t try to figure out the cause.


Don’t ask yourself why this epidemic gets worse every year. It obviously doesn’t trouble you in the least that by electing anti abortion candidates you put women who will continue to get abortions without access to a hospital to have the procedure done at risk of losing their lives.


You aren’t THAT pro life are you. All life doesn’t matter does it?


Love the sinner and hate the sin are empty words when you say them. Think about this every time those words pass your lips.


But you are comfortable. You are fat and happy. You feel vindication! You feel righteous!  You don’t care if women die having abortions. You aren’t THAT pro life are you? All life doesn’t matter that much does it?


You don’t care about the American principals of keeping the government out of peoples personal lives. You don’t care about people having the right to live their lives as they see fit. You don’t give a damn. You are judging and you do not have the right to judge. And you consider yourself a patriot!


Abortion is an issue best left to the woman who wants one, her physician, and her confessor. It’s none of our business.


Pro life is much more than being anti abortion. Every other action you take by voting the way you do flies in the face of the totality of what being pro life encompasses. You probably don’t even know what I’m talking about.


I want my image, my words, and my spirit to haunt you for the rest of your life.


My candidate was pro abortion. I voted the way I did because I need health insurance and cannot afford it.


This is America. We don’t have the right to force our beliefs or opinions on anyone who disagrees with us. You are so smug and comfortable in your one note symphony…God is watching.


When you see me I want you to see ONE real life, flesh and blood, human being you voted to take access to health care away from.


To vote to repeal Obamacare and deny the least among us access to health care is as much an anti pro life action as voting for someone who believes in late term abortion.


Your position and your actions are inconsistent and cancel each other out.


If I need to go to confession, and I don’t think I need to, so do you.


Denying the least among us, those who can least afford access to health insurance, the right to a healthy life, must surely fly in the face of your inconsistent pro-life conscience blanket.


When are you going to start spending any time worrying about insuring the babies you are saving from abortion have the right to a good life? When? Ever?


Access to health care is part of being pro life. You voted to deny that to me. I will not forgive you for it.


God is watching you.


Forewarned is forearmed.


Stay away from me.


I’m not going to say any more to you about this. Stop emailing me you Pharisee. Stop emailing me.


I’m not responding to you any more and I’ll slap the shit out of you in church if you don’t believe me.

Wake Up

Who looks outside, dreams; who looks inside, awakes.

– Carl Jung –


I like futility of effort; the uphill road to failure is a very human thing.

— Jean-Pierre Melville —


I am where I am because I believe in all possibilities.

— Whoopi Goldberg —

Who is the “establishment” now?


What is the “status quo?”

Absence is


Absence is the best defense.

– Nils-Fredrik Nielsen –

He was so cunning


he never slandered anyone.

– Nils-Fredrik Nielsen –

Life is a gift easily exchanged


Life is a gift that can easily be exchanged for something more permanent.

– Nils-Fredrik Nielsen –


Every life is special. You matter. Your dreams matter.

1. Take 100-percent responsibility for your life.
2. You are allowed to be anything you want.
3. Your thoughts are everything.
4. Love yourself.
5. There is always a higher power at work (and it’s on your side).

Annoy Somebody!


If you can’t annoy somebody, there is little point in writing.

Kingsley Amis


going my way?


Slave population in the Southern States.


Night by Elie Wiesel

Isle Jazz


Disclaimer: I won’t call this a typical book review. I have only penned here what I felt after reading the book.

I was a Holocaust ignorant, until 2 years back when I saw a BBC documentary of the ariel view of Auschwitz which was shot using a drone. The sheer numbness that spread through me watching that video has stayed with me. After that whenever I heard the word Holocaust, those images and the barren coldness returned to me.

Living in India, our history subjects never really elaborated on Hitler or his dictatorship. In my country, Hitler and Nazi, these words are mostly used to describe strict people in a comic way. After I have come to know about Holocaust, I tread with caution before I use these words. And I feel others should too.

Reading Night by Elie Weisel (a Holocaust survivor) made me realise how desensitized I have…

View original post 631 more words

Choose something different.


Learn to control bad habits, achieve freedom and cultivate unconditional self-acceptance.

— Pema Chodron

T.E. Lawrence from The Arab Bulletin, 20 August 1917 Twenty-Seven Articles

TE Lawrence 1918

T.E. Lawrence
from The Arab Bulletin, 20 August 1917

Twenty-Seven Articles

The following notes have been expressed in commandment form for greater clarity and to save words. They are, however, only my personal conclusions, arrived at gradually while I worked in the Hejaz and now put on paper as stalking horses for beginners in the Arab armies. They are meant to apply only to Bedu; townspeople or Syrians require totally different treatment. They are of course not suitable to any other person’s need, or applicable unchanged in any particular situation. Handling Hejaz Arabs is an art, not a science, with exceptions and no obvious rules. At the same time we have a great chance there; the Sherif trusts us, and has given us the position (towards his Government) which the Germans wanted to win in Turkey. If we are tactful, we can at once retain his goodwill and carry out our job, but to succeed we have got to put into it all the interest and skill we possess.

1. Go easy for the first few weeks. A bad start is difficult to atone for, and the Arabs form their judgments on externals that we ignore. When you have reached the inner circle in a tribe, you can do as you please with yourself and them.

2. Learn all you can about your Ashraf and Bedu. Get to know their families, clans and tribes, friends and enemies, wells, hills and roads. Do all this by listening and by indirect inquiry. Do not ask questions. Get to speak their dialect of Arabic, not yours. Until you can understand their allusions, avoid getting deep into conversation or you will drop bricks. Be a little stiff at first.

3. In matters of business deal only with the commander of the army, column, or party in which you serve. Never give orders to anyone at all, and reserve your directions or advice for the C.O., however great the temptation (for efficiency’s sake) of dealing with his underlings. Your place is advisory, and your advice is due to the commander alone. Let him see that this is your conception of your duty, and that his is to be the sole executive of your joint plans.

4. Win and keep the confidence of your leader. Strengthen his prestige at your expense before others when you can. Never refuse or quash schemes he may put forward; but ensure that they are put forward in the first instance privately to you. Always approve them, and after praise modify them insensibly, causing the suggestions to come from him, until they are in accord with your own opinion. When you attain this point, hold him to it, keep a tight grip of his ideas, and push them forward as firmly as possibly, but secretly, so that to one but himself (and he not too clearly) is aware of your pressure.

5. Remain in touch with your leader as constantly and unobtrusively as you can. Live with him, that at meal times and at audiences you may be naturally with him in his tent. Formal visits to give advice are not so good as the constant dropping of ideas in casual talk. When stranger sheikhs come in for the first time to swear allegiance and offer service, clear out of the tent. If their first impression is of foreigners in the confidence of the Sherif, it will do the Arab cause much harm.

6. Be shy of too close relations with the subordinates of the expedition. Continual intercourse with them will make it impossible for you to avoid going behind or beyond the instructions that the Arab C.O. has given them on your advice, and in so disclosing the weakness of his position you altogether destroy your own.

7. Treat the sub-chiefs of your force quite easily and lightly. In this way you hold yourself above their level. Treat the leader, if a Sherif, with respect. He will return your manner and you and he will then be alike, and above the rest. Precedence is a serious matter among the Arabs, and you must attain it.

8. Your ideal position is when you are present and not noticed. Do not be too intimate, too prominent, or too earnest. Avoid being identified too long or too often with any tribal sheikh, even if C.O. of the expedition. To do your work you must be above jealousies, and you lose prestige if you are associated with a tribe or clan, and its inevitable feuds. Sherifs are above all blood-feuds and local rivalries, and form the only principle of unity among the Arabs. Let your name therefore be coupled always with a Sherif’s, and share his attitude towards the tribes. When the moment comes for action put yourself publicly under his orders. The Bedu will then follow suit.

9. Magnify and develop the growing conception of the Sherifs as the natural aristocracy of the Arabs. Intertribal jealousies make it impossible for any sheikh to attain a commanding position, and the only hope of union in nomad Arabs is that the Ashraf be universally acknowledged as the ruling class. Sherifs are half-townsmen, half-nomad, in manner and life, and have the instinct of command. Mere merit and money would be insufficient to obtain such recognition; but the Arab reverence for pedigree and the Prophet gives hope for the ultimate success of the Ashraf.

10. Call your Sherif ‘Sidi’ in public and in private. Call other people by their ordinary names, without title. In intimate conversation call a Sheikh ‘Abu Annad’, ‘Akhu Alia’ or some similar by-name.

11. The foreigner and Christian is not a popular person in Arabia. However friendly and informal the treatment of yourself may be, remember always that your foundations are very sandy ones. Wave a Sherif in front of you like a banner and hide your own mind and person. If you succeed, you will have hundreds of miles of country and thousands of men under your orders, and for this it is worth bartering the outward show.

12. Cling tight to your sense of humour. You will need it every day. A dry irony is the most useful type, and repartee of a personal and not too broad character will double your influence with the chiefs. Reproof, if wrapped up in some smiling form, will carry further and last longer than the most violent speech. The power of mimicry or parody is valuable, but use it sparingly, for wit is more dignified than humour. Do not cause a laugh at a Sherif except among Sherifs.

13. Never lay hands on an Arab; you degrade yourself. You may think the resultant obvious increase of outward respect a gain to you, but what you have really done is to build a wall between you and their inner selves. It is difficult to keep quiet when everything is being done wrong, but the less you lose your temper the greater your advantage. Also then you will not go mad yourself.

14. While very difficult to drive, the Bedu are easy to lead, if: have the patience to bear with them. The less apparent your interferences the more your influence. They are willing to follow your advice and do what you wish, but they do not mean you or anyone else to be aware of that. It is only after the end of all annoyances that you find at bottom their real fund of goodwill.

15. Do not try to do too much with your own hands. Better the Arabs do it tolerably than that you do it perfectly. It is their war, and you are to help them, not to win it for them. Actually, also, under the very odd conditions of Arabia, your practical work will not be as good as, perhaps, you think it is.

16. If you can, without being too lavish, forestall presents to yourself. A well-placed gift is often most effective in winning over a suspicious sheikh. Never receive a present without giving a liberal return, but you may delay this return (while letting its ultimate certainty be known) if you require a particular service from the giver. Do not let them ask you for things, since their greed will then make them look upon you only as a cow to milk.

17. Wear an Arab headcloth when with a tribe. Bedu have a malignant prejudice against the hat, and believe that our persistence in wearing it (due probably to British obstinacy of dictation) is founded on some immoral or irreligious principle. A thick headcloth forms a good protection against the sun, and if you wear a hat your best Arab friends will be ashamed of you in public.

18. Disguise is not advisable. Except in special areas, let it be clearly known that you are a British officer and a Christian. At the same time, if you can wear Arab kit when with the tribes, you will acquire their trust and intimacy to a degree impossible in uniform. It is, however, dangerous and difficult. They make no special allowances for you when you dress like them. Breaches of etiquette not charged against a foreigner are not condoned to you in Arab clothes. You will be like an actor in a foreign theatre, playing a part day and night for months, without rest, and for an anxious stake. Complete success, which is when the Arabs forget your strangeness and speak naturally before you, counting you as one of themselves, is perhaps only attainable in character: while half-success (all that most of us will strive for; the other costs too much) is easier to win in British things, and you yourself will last longer, physically and mentally, in the comfort that they mean. Also then the Turks will not hang you, when you are caught.

19. If you wear Arab things, wear the best. Clothes are significant among the tribes, and you must wear the appropriate, and appear at ease in them. Dress like a Sherif, if they agree to it.

20. If you wear Arab things at all, go the whole way. Leave your English friends and customs on the coast, and fall back on Arab habits entirely. It is possible, starting thus level with them, for the European to beat the Arabs at their own game, for we have stronger motives for our action, and put more heart into it than they. If you can surpass them, you have taken an immense stride toward complete success, but the strain of living and thinking in a foreign and half-understood language, the savage food, strange clothes, and stranger ways, with the complete loss of privacy and quiet, and the impossibility of ever relaxing your watchful imitation of the others for months on end, provide such an added stress to the ordinary difficulties of dealing with the Bedu, the climate, and the Turks, that this road should not be chosen without serious thought.

21. Religious discussions will be frequent. Say what you like about your own side, and avoid criticism of theirs, unless you know that the point is external, when you may score heavily by proving it so. With the Bedu, Islam is so all-pervading an element that there is little religiosity, little fervour, and no regard for externals. Do not think from their conduct that they are careless. Their conviction of the truth of their faith, and its share in every act and thought and principle of their daily life is so intimate and intense as to be unconscious, unless roused by opposition. Their religion is as much a part of nature to them as is sleep or food.

22. Do not try to trade on what you know of fighting. The Hejaz confounds ordinary tactics. Learn the Bedu principles of war as thoroughly and as quickly as you can, for till you know them your advice will be no good to the Sherif. Unnumbered generations of tribal raids have taught them more about some parts of the business than we will ever know. In familiar conditions they fight well, but strange events cause panic. Keep your unit small. Their raiding parties are usually from one hundred to two hundred men, and if you take a crowd they only get confused. Also their sheikhs, while admirable company commanders, are too ‘set’ to learn to handle the equivalents of battalions or regiments. Don’t attempt unusual things, unless they appeal to the sporting instinct Bedu have so strongly, unless success is obvious. If the objective is a good one (booty) they will attack like fiends, they are splendid scouts, their mobility gives you the advantage that will win this local war, they make proper use of their knowledge of the country (don’t take tribesmen to places they do not know), and the gazelle-hunters, who form a proportion of the better men, are great shots at visible targets. A sheikh from one tribe cannot give orders to men from another; a Sherif is necessary to command a mixed tribal force. If there is plunder in prospect, and the odds are at all equal, you will win. Do not waste Bedu attacking trenches (they will not stand casualties) or in trying to defend a position, for they cannot sit still without slacking. The more unorthodox and Arab your proceedings, the more likely you are to have the Turks cold, for they lack initiative and expect you to. Don’t play for safety.

23. The open reason that Bedu give you for action or inaction may be true, but always there will be better reasons left for you to divine. You must find these inner reasons (they will be denied, but are none the less in operation) before shaping your arguments for one course or other. Allusion is more effective than logical exposition: they dislike concise expression. Their minds work just as ours do, but on different premises. There is nothing unreasonable, incomprehensible, or inscrutable in the Arab. Experience of them, and knowledge of their prejudices will enable you to foresee their attitude and possible course of action in nearly every case.

24. Do not mix Bedu and Syrians, or trained men and tribesmen. You will get work out of neither, for they hate each other. I have never seen a successful combined operation, but many failures. In particular, ex-officers of the Turkish army, however Arab in feelings and blood and language, are hopeless with Bedu. They are narrow minded in tactics, unable to adjust themselves to irregular warfare, clumsy in Arab etiquette, swollen-headed to the extent of being incapable of politeness to a tribesman for more than a few minutes, impatient, and, usually, helpless without their troops on the road and in action. Your orders (if you were unwise enough to give any) would be more readily obeyed by Beduins than those of any Mohammedan Syrian officer. Arab townsmen and Arab tribesmen regard each other mutually as poor relations, and poor relations are much more objectionable than poor strangers.

25. In spite of ordinary Arab example, avoid too free talk about women. It is as difficult a subject as religion, and their standards are so unlike our own that a remark, harmless in English, may appear as unrestrained to them, as some of their statements would look to us, if translated literally.

26. Be as careful of your servants as of yourself. If you want a sophisticated one you will probably have to take an Egyptian, or a Sudani, and unless you are very lucky he will undo on trek much of the good you so laboriously effect. Arabs will cook rice and make coffee for you, and leave you if required to do unmanly work like cleaning boots or washing. They are only really possible if you are in Arab kit. A slave brought up in the Hejaz is the best servant, but there are rules against British subjects owning them, so they have to be lent to you. In any case, take with you an Ageyli or two when you go up country. They are the most efficient couriers in Arabia, and understand camels.

27. The beginning and ending of the secret of handling Arabs is unremitting study of them. Keep always on your guard; never say an unnecessary thing: watch yourself and your companions all the time: hear all that passes, search out what is going on beneath the surface, read their characters, discover their tastes and their weaknesses and keep everything you find out to yourself. Bury yourself in Arab circles, have no interests and no ideas except the work in hand, so that your brain is saturated with one thing only, and you realize your part deeply enough to avoid the little slips that would counteract the painful work of weeks. Your success will be proportioned to the amount of mental effort you devote to it.

Do you know what it means?



Still Strolling-9











Canal Street 1941





french quarter rain



images (7)




















images (10)


New Orleans






Halloween In the French Quarter

Christmas In the Oaks 2011

Superdome Electrical Storm 07-21-2011

James Noel Jim Pittman

City Park Oaks Roosevelt Mall

CCC @ nite

Benedict Kisses Benson Ring

1738 General Pershing Club

St. Louis Cathedral


Hey Rain Makers!

INTELLIGENT LIFE MAGAZINE JULY / AUG 2014Places Ocean Bottomography Map

We need to put boots on the ground over there again as soon as we can make it rain.

tough decisions


We live in the greatest Representative Democracy to have ever existed on earth. We have the right to practice our faith within bounds we all agreed to as voted on by our representatives in Congress.

So, you lose a vote, the other side wins, and you decide to continue to live here you must abide by the law of our nation regardless of whether or not it violates your religious principals. One cannot benefit from the system, run a business, live here, breathe or anything else here unless you are willing to go to prison for disobeying the law.

If your faith means that much to you and you cannot vote to elect enough reactionary politicians to make your position the majority position then you should go to jail…if you really believe what you say you believe in. Go ahead. Do what you like. But just as in matters of faith, in our world, be prepared to pay the price for your actions.

“balanced budgets uber alles”


As the Great Depression descended on Germany in 1930, its government — a coalition of centrist parties headed by Chancellor Heinrich Brüning — insisted on balancing its budget in order to convince its creditors (the nations to whom it was paying economically ruinous reparations as compensation for World War I) that it was a responsible debtor. In the hope that the creditor nations would respond by eventually canceling those reparations, Brüning slashed social spending and investment. He trod the path of fiscal rectitude even as unemployment reached record heights — the same policy, under the same depression conditions, to which today’s chancellor, Angela Merkel, has demanded Greece adhere.

There was, to be sure, an unfortunate downside to Brüning’s policy. As the Depression deepened and Germany’s centrist and even social democratic parties continued to insist on a policy of balanced budgets uber alles, increasing numbers of voters abandoned the center for extremist parties in the 1932 election. Soon thereafter, one of those extremist leaders — I think his name was Hitler — became chancellor.

Harold Meyerson writes a weekly political column that appears on Thursdays and contributes to the PostPartisan blog

Repeal the Second Amendment


The Second Amendment (Amendment II) to the United States Constitution is hereby repealed.

have a vision


1506130612521808403_v1 Jim Morrison Last poem



This advice comes up a lot but from the mouth of a multi-Emmy winning writer who worked on The Sopranos and created Mad Men, it does hold a bit more sway. Especially considering Weiner knows what it’s like to find success after years of wanting to quit – he was heaps out of work for four years, being supported by his wife and dismissed by everyone around as a deadbeat freeloader before he got his first writing gig.

“You can’t give up on this stuff, you need a certain kind of delusion.“

“I never finished anything all the way till the end until I was 30 years old.”

“The best thing you can do to sell yourself as a writer, is to write things and finish them.”

Everyone, not just those hoping to tread a creative path in their life, can always do with a reminder that practice is key. In the talk ‘Trust Me, I’m Creative’ the point was raised that “great creatives are sometimes not great doers.” (In workplaces this can mean that trust breaks down between those creating and those keeping the creators on track).
One of the panelists said of this struggle: “coming up with ideas is not ‘the creative process’ – making ideas happen is.” And so, for someone like all of us, just by plugging away and actually d o i n g we’re already ahead of the pack.


At ‘The Startup Revolution,’ a talk on ‘the reinvention of business through technology, culture and design,’ the panel quoted the Co-Founder of Airbnb Brian Chesky who said:

“Ever notice how families or tribes don’t require much process? That is because there is such a strong trust and culture that it supersedes any process. In organisations (or even in society) where culture is weak, you need an abundance of heavy, precise rules and processes.”


The whole idea of ‘work life balance’ gets thrown around a lot and is kind of screwed, when you think about it. (Not the sentiment, but the semantics). It implies that your life hits pause as soon as you walk through the door at work and then resumes at knock-off time. Meaning there are a lot of minutes of your life that you’re wishing away, which = bummer.

It is thought that what creative people do in their spare time is what they should be doing as their job but then, on the other hand, there’s also a strong push to go after ‘real’/$$$ careers.

At the aforementioned ‘Trust Me, I’m Creative’ talk, the idea of trusting in creativity was obviously integral and they brought it back to the practical and spoke in terms of economics. Increasingly it is too expensive to manufacture in Australia and so, a lot of our production types industries have shrunk. Moving forward our knowledge – i.e. our delicious brains and sick as synapses – and expertise will be our most valuable assets.

Another classic – with reason – and Weiner’s thoughts on the topic:

“Get accustomed to rejection.”

“See if ‘I’ll show them’ can become your motto.”

“Other people’s success can be devastating, especially if you think it’s not deserved.”

In ‘Leading For Creativity,’ a talk centred around getting the best results out of a creative team, Nicole Velik of The Ideas Bodega told of her very simple equation for a satisfying career. She believes “contribution + recognition = happiness at work.”

Getting negative feedback is obviously the pits, but do try and remember that sometimes that can have more to do with the person giving it than you realise. Meaning, people project their bullshit. Meaning, people are people. Meaning, J.K. Rowling was straight up rejected by 12 publishing houses pre-Potter Mania.

It’s always interesting listening to creative people and gauging how they see themselves and whether they fully understand how jealous everyone is of their achievements. When it comes to Weiner, at one point throughout the evening, he said “the success of the show has made some kind of an imprint on my idea of my abilities.” Whether he’s been faux-humble or not, it will do us all well to realise that even those at the very top of their game have to overcome self-doubt.

When it comes to creating Weiner said: “The worst thing you can do is to chase the marketplace – don’t write for the audience, you are the audience.”

Or, to paraphrase the great English poets ‘Supertramp,’ don’t let the world make you too sensible.

Posted on: June 11, 2015 5:38AM by Claire Bracken.

Breaking In Your Glove

Breaking In Your Glove

670px-Break-in-a-New-Baseball-Glove-Step-5 (1)

Posted on July 16, 2013

Not recommended on any PRE-OILED GLOVES

After 30+ years of playing & coaching baseball I have tried many different methods of breaking in a glove. In my opinion, the steps listed below will speed up this seemingly forever process.

Please keep in mind this process should be used on high quality gloves made of 100% leather, as this process may shorten the life of synthetic materials.

  1. Fill up your sink or a bucket & completely submerge glove in room temperature water for approximately 3-5 minutes. 
  2. Put a baseball deep in the pocket & try to stretch glove around a baseball forming a pocket. 
  3. Tie up glove tightly, forming the pocket around the ball using a belt or string fingers facing up, to help the water drain. 
  4. Keep tied up & let glove dry naturally out in the sun or in the attic a couple days or in any warm part of the house. Do not place on any HOT surface. 
  5. Untie & throw in the clothes dryer (even if still wet) on hot for 15-20 minutes. This will help “beat up the leather.” 
  6. Remove from dryer & start working it in. The more time you spend bending down on the fingers & forming the pocket the better the end result. Once completely broken in I prefer an occasional application of inexpensive shaving cream (just the white foam kind with lanolin and no fragrance) when glove gets a little dry.UPDATE: I have found it increasingly difficult to find shaving cream with lanolin, so note that a good alternative is to purchase a small bottle of Rawlings Glovolium, which seems to be readily available in many sporting goods stores. (Just remember to add in small amounts…you don’t want your glove to be soaked and/or heavy!)

This method should leave your glove as close to game-ready as is possible in the absolute least amount of time… It works!

Remember, the cow that your glove came from certainly spent most of its life outdoors, so a little water shouldn’t affect your leather.

However, I would not use this method with any of those chemically pre-oiled gloves that you sometimes see. They are chemically broken in and, in my opinion, will not last as long and tend to turn into rag dolls way before their time.


Tonto Genovese is a former coach of the Fayette (Georgia) Yellow Jackets.




Dorothy Law Nolte

If a child lives with criticism,
he learns to condemn.

If a child lives with hostility,
he learns to fight.

If a child lives with fear,
he learns to be apprehensive.

If a child lives with pity,
he learns to feel sorry for himself.

If a child lives with ridicule,
he learns to be shy.

If a child lives with jealousy,
he learns what envy is.

If a child lives with shame,
he learns to feel guilty.

If a child lives with encouragement,
he learns to be confident.

If a child lives with tolerance,
he learns to be patient.

If a child lives with praise,
he learns to be appreciative.

If a child lives with acceptance,
he learns to love.

If a child lives with approval,
he learns to like himself.

If a child lives with recognition,
he learns that it is good to have a goal.

If a child lives with sharing,
he learns about generosity.

If a child lives with honesty and fairness,
he learns what truth and justice are.

If a child lives with security,
he learns to have faith in himself and in those about him.

If a child lives with friendliness,
he learns that the world is a nice place in which to live.

If you live with serenity,
your child will live with peace of mind.

With what is your child living?

Source: Canfield, J. & Wells, H. C. (1976). 100 ways to enhance self-concept in the classroom: A handbook for teachers and patents. Boston: Allyn & Bacon.

Reductio ad Hitlerum or Godwin’s law

Mike_Godwin_at_Wikimedia_2010Mike Godwin

Godwin’s law:

(also known as Godwin’s Rule of Nazi Analogies or Godwin’s Law of Nazi Analogies) is an observation made by Mike Godwin in 1990 that has become an Internet adage.

It states: “As an online discussion grows longer, the probability of a comparison involving Nazis or Hitler approaches. In other words, Godwin observed that, given enough time, in any online discussion regardless of topic or scope someone inevitably criticizes some point made in the discussion by comparing it to beliefs held by Hitler and the Nazis.


Godwin’s law is often cited in online discussions as a deterrent against the use of arguments in the widespread Reductio ad Hitlerum form. The rule does not make any statement about whether any particular reference or comparison to Adolf Hitler or the Nazis might be appropriate, but only asserts that the likelihood of such a reference or comparison arising increases as the discussion progresses. Precisely because such a comparison or reference may sometimes be appropriate, Godwin has argued that overuse of Nazi and Hitler comparisons should be avoided, because it robs the valid comparisons of their impact.


Although in one of its early forms Godwin’s law referred specifically to Usenet newsgroup discussions, the law is now often applied to any threaded online discussion, such as forums, chat rooms and blog comment threads, and has been invoked for the inappropriate use of Nazi analogies in articles or speeches.


Reductio ad Hitlerum, also argumentum ad Hitlerum (Latin for “reduction to Hitler”, with Hitlerum serving as a Latinized form of Hitler‘s name), is a term coined by philosopher Leo Strauss in 1951. According to Strauss, the Reductio ad Hitlerum is a humorous observation where someone compares an opponent’s views with those that would be held by Adolf Hitler or the Nazi Party.


According to Strauss, Reductio ad Hitlerum is a form of ad hominem or ad misericordiam, a fallacy of irrelevance, in which a conclusion is suggested based solely on something’s or someone’s origin rather than its current meaning. The suggested rationale is one of fallacy of irrelevance, Its name is a variation on the term reductio ad absurdum.


Reductio ad Hitlerum is sometimes called “playing the Nazi card.” According to its critics and proponents, it is a tactic often used to derail arguments, because such comparisons tend to distract and anger the opponent.


A poet is

Storm Over Lake Pontchartrain2


A poet is someone who stands outside in the rain hoping to be struck by lightning.

— James Dickey

Former U.S. Poet Laureate

James Dickey (born February 2, 1923) read a poem at President Jimmy Carter’s inauguration.

He had come through many hardships and much experience to the realization that the greatest human achievement is love.


Leo Tolstoy’s Love Letter to Lincoln – The Daily Beast.

 ICONS 01.31.15

Leo Tolstoy’s Love Letter to Lincoln

Just a few years before he died, Russian novelist Leo Tolstoy gave an interview about Abraham Lincoln to convey just how universally admired the dead president was. In the interview, which first appeared in the February 7, 1909 issue of New York World, he recounted how a Muslim tribal chief in the Caucasus had offered the writer a prize horse if he could tell them the tale of Lincoln, “the greatest ruler of the world.”

Visiting Leo Tolstoi in Yasnaya with the intention of getting him to write an article on Lincoln, I unfortunately found him not well enough to yield to my request. However, he was willing to give me his opinion of the great American statesman, and this is what he told me:

“Of all the great national heroes and statesmen of history Lincoln is the only real giant. Alexander, Frederick the Great, Caesar, Napoleon, Gladstone and even Washington stand in greatness of character, in depth of feeling and in a certain moral power far behind Lincoln. Lincoln was a man of whom a nation has a right to be proud; he was a Christ in miniature, a saint of humanity, whose name will live thousands of years in the legends of future generations. We are still too near to his greatness, and so can hardly appreciate his divine power; but after a few centuries more our posterity will find him considerably bigger than we do. His genius is still too strong and too powerful for the common understanding, just as the sun is too hot when its light beams directly on us.

“If one would know the greatness of Lincoln one should lis- ten to the stories which are told about him in other parts of the world. I have been in wild places, where one hears the name of America uttered with such mystery as if it were some heaven or hell. I have heard various tribes of barbarians discussing the New World, but I heard this only in connection with the name of Lincoln. Lincoln as the wonderful hero of America is known by the most primitive nations of Asia. This may be illustrated through the following incident:

“Once while travelling in the Caucasus I happened to be the guest of a Caucasian chief of the Circassians, who, living far away from civilized life in the mountains, had but a fragmentary and childish comprehension of the world and its history. The fingers of civilization had never reached him nor his tribe, and all life beyond his native valleys was a dark mystery. Being a Mussulman he was naturally opposed to all ideas of progress and education.

“I was received with the usual Oriental hospitality and after our meal was asked by my host to tell him something of my life. Yielding to his request I began to tell him of my profession, of the development of our industries and inventions and of the schools. He listened to everything with indifference, but when I began to tell about the great statesmen and the great generals of the world he seemed at once to become very much interested.

Lincoln was a man of whom a nation has a right to be proud; he was a Christ in miniature, a saint of humanity, whose name will live thousands of years in the legends of future generations.

“‘Wait a moment,’ he interrupted, after I had talked a few minutes. ‘I want all my neighbors and my sons to listen to you. I will call them immediately.’

“He soon returned with a score of wild looking riders and asked me politely to continue. It was indeed a solemn moment when those sons of the wilderness sat around me on the floor and gazed at me as if hungering for knowledge. I spoke at first of our Czars and of their victories; then I spoke of the foreign rulers and of some of the greatest military leaders. My talk seemed to impress them deeply. The story of Napoleon was so interesting to them that I had to tell them every detail, as, for instance, how his hands looked, how tall he was, who made his guns and pistols and the color of his horse. It was very difficult to satisfy them and to meet their point of view, but I did my best. When I declared that I had finished my talk, my host, a gray- bearded, tall rider, rose, lifted his hand and said very gravely:

“‘But you have not told us a syllable about the greatest general and greatest ruler of the world. We want to know some- thing about him. He was a hero. He spoke with a voice of thunder; he laughed like the sunrise and his deeds were strong as the rock and as sweet as the fragrance of roses. The angels appeared to his mother and predicted that the son whom she would conceive would become the greatest the stars had ever seen. He was so great that he even forgave the crimes of his greatest enemies and shook brotherly hands with those who had plotted against his life. His name was Lincoln and the country in which he lived is called America, which is so far away that if a youth should journey to reach it he would be an old man when he arrived.Tell us of that man.’

“‘Tell us, please, and we will present you with the best horse of our stock,’ shouted the others.

“I looked at them and saw their faces all aglow, while their eyes were burning. I saw that those rude barbarians were really interested in a man whose name and deeds had already become a legend. I told them of Lincoln and his wisdom, of his home life and youth. They asked me ten questions to one which I was able to answer. They wanted to know all about his habits, his influence upon the people and his physical strength. But they were very astonished to hear that Lincoln made a sorry figure on a horse and that he lived such a simple life.

“‘Tell us why he was killed,’ one of them said.

“I had to tell everything. After all my knowledge of Lincoln was exhausted they seemed to be satisfied. I can hardly forget the great enthusiasm which they expressed in their wild thanks and desire to get a picture of the great American hero. I said that I probably could secure one from my friend in the nearest town, and this seemed to give them great pleasure.

“The next morning when I left the chief a wonderful Arabian horse was brought me as a present for my marvellous story, and our farewell was very impressive.

“One of the riders agreed to accompany me to the town and get the promised picture, which I was now bound to secure at any price. I was successful in getting a large photograph from my friend, and I handed it to the man with my greetings to his associates. It was interesting to witness the gravity of his face and the trembling of his hands when he received my present. He gazed for several minutes silently, like one in a reverent prayer; his eyes filled with tears. He was deeply touched and I asked him why he became so sad. After pondering my question for a few moments he replied:

“‘I am sad because I feel sorry that he had to die by the hand of a villain. Don’t you find, judging from his picture, that his eyes are full of tears and that his lips are sad with a secret sorrow?’

“Like all Orientals, he spoke in a poetical way and left me with many deep bows.

“This little incident proves how largely the name of Lincoln is worshipped throughout the world and how legendary his personality has become.

“Now, why was Lincoln so great that he overshadows all other national heroes? He really was not a great general like Napoleon or Washington; he was not such a skilful statesman as Gladstone or Frederick the Great; but his supremacy expresses itself altogether in his peculiar moral power and in the greatness of his character. He had come through many hardships and much experience to the realization that the greatest human achievement is love. He was what Beethoven was in music, Dante in poetry, Raphael in painting, and Christ in the philosophy of life. He aspired to be divine—and he was.

“It is natural that before he reached his goal he had to walk the highway of mistakes. But we find him, nevertheless, in every tendency true to one main motive, and that was to benefit man- kind. He was one who wanted to be great through his smallness. If he had failed to become President he would be, no doubt, just as great as he is now, but only God could appreciate it. The judgment of the world is usually wrong in the beginning, and it takes centuries to correct it. But in the case of Lincoln the world was right from the start. Sooner or later Lincoln would have been seen to be a great man, even though he had never been an American President. But it would have taken a great generation to place him where he belongs.

“Lincoln died prematurely by the hand of the assassin, and naturally we condemn the criminal from our viewpoint of justice. But the question is, was his death not predestined by a divine wisdom, and was it not better for the nation and for his greatness that he died just in that way and at that particular moment? We know so little about that divine law which we call fate that no one can answer. Christ had a presentiment of His death, and there are indications that also Lincoln had strange dreams and presentiments of something tragic. If that was really the fact, can we conceive that human will could have prevented the outcome of the universal or divine will? I doubt it. I doubt also that Lincoln could have done more to prove his greatness than he did. I am convinced we are but instruments in the hands of an unknown power and that we have to follow its bidding to the end. We have a certain apparent independence, according to our moral character, wherein we may benefit our fellows, but in all eternal and universal questions we follow blindly a divine predestination. According to that eternal law the greatest of national heroes had to die, but an immortal glory still shines on his deeds.

“However, the highest heroism is that which is based on humanity, truth, justice and pity; all other forms are doomed to forgetfulness. The greatness of Aristotle or Kant is insignificant compared with the greatness of Buddha, Moses and Christ. The greatness of Napoleon, Caesar or Washington is only moon- light by the sun of Lincoln. His example is universal and will last thousands of years. Washington was a typical American, Napoleon was a typical Frenchman, but Lincoln was a humanitarian as broad as the world. He was bigger than his country— bigger than all the Presidents together. Why? Because he loved his enemies as himself and because he was a universal individualist who wanted to see himself in the world—not the world in himself. He was great through his simplicity and was noble through his charity.

“Lincoln is a strong type of those who make for truth and justice, for brotherhood and freedom. Love is the foundation of his life. That is what makes him immortal and that is the quality of a giant. I hope that his centenary birth day will create an impulse toward righteousness among the nations. Lincoln lived and died a hero, and as a great character he will live as long as the world lives. May his life long bless humanity!”

**This article first appeared in the New York World on February 7, 1909.

Don’t ever forget…

Home sweet home


SICKENING 01.19.15 For committing the eternal crime of the “people of Lot”—a Koranic euphemism for sodomy—the doomed man will be hurled to death.

For committing the eternal crime of the people of Lot the doomed man will be hurled to death.



“Give sorrow words,” lest a hurting heart break.

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“Give sorrow words,” Shakespeare wrote, lest a hurting heart break.

We have nothing to fear but fear itself. We have met the enemy and he is us.


A friend sent me a terrible list of Muslim inspired terrorism and the death toll for 2013. The death toll, worldwide, in 2013, not counting the wounded or injured, the entire death toll, worldwide, due to Muslim terrorism in 2013 was 942 unfortunate souls died.

According to the FBI between 1980 and 2005, 94 percent of terror attacks committed on US soil were committed by non-Muslims.

In 2013 190,000 Americans were murdered by fellow Americans.

30 Americans a day die killed by fellow Americans in gun violence, that’s over 10,950 people a year.

Three women per day are killed by their domestic partners in America, that’s 1,095 American women alone, in one year, more than the total number of people killed by Muslims terrorist, worldwide.

Your chances of being killed by a falling refrigerator were greater than your chances of being killed in a Muslim inspired terror attack.

What are we afraid of?


“End Corruption, hear the cries of the poor”

— Pope Francis







 US ban on Cuban cigars comes to an end as Barack Obama’s détente with Cuba begins

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Bundlr – New Orleans Blues Natchez Vicksburg The Delta 3rd Coast

Bundlr – New Orleans Blues Natchez Vicksburg The Delta 3rd Coast.


A Series of Dreams | STORYTELLER


A Series of Dreams | STORYTELLER.

Thinking of a series of dreams
Where the time and the tempo fly
And there’s no exit in any direction
’Cept the one that you can’t see with your eyes
Wasn’t making any great connection
Wasn’t falling for any intricate scheme
Nothing that would pass inspection
Just thinking of a series of dreams

– Bob Dylan (Oh Mercy), Copyright 1991, Special Rider

Back to the scene of other pictures.

St. Alphonsus Church, once part of a community of churches. This, St. Mary’s Assumption Church and Bon Secour. Once a group of three churches. One for the Irish, One for the Germans and one for the French. Today, Bon Secour is gone having been dismantled years ago, St. Alphonsus was deconsecrated years ago, but seems to be slowly being restored for community use. Even in this picture, you can see a man practicing organ playing if you look far to the right and near the bottom. And, St. Mary’s Assumption which is still used today for Mass and sacraments. Oh… this church was built in 1843. It’s survived a lot, including Hurricane Katrina almost a decade ago. It looks pretty good from a distance, but the closer you get the more you see that cracks and broken bits.

— Ray Laskowitz



“Happiness equals reality minus expectations.”

–Tom Magliozzi, R.I.P.

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