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tariki last won the day on June 15

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About tariki

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  1. Just following this thread from afar. Just happen to be reading a book on how poetry can transform and there was a quote from the journals of Gerard Manley Hopkins, where he was describing, amongst other things, the drift of snow, shaped by the wind, and then observes "chance left free to act falls into an order as well as purpose". Just seemed appropriate, but who knows? One little note from the book I added to my Notebook....."A work of art is not a piece of fruit lifted from a tree branch; it is a ripening collaboration of artist, receiver, and world." (Jane Hirshfield, "Ten Windows")
  2. Some interesting reading in Bruce Springsteen's autobiography "Born to Run" about military "discrimination" and how it was used by those who were against becoming "cannon fodder" ( for Vietnam ) Some guys "starved themselves thin" while other "fed themselves fat", while some learnt tricks as far as demonstrating their mental inadequacies. The tricks worked at the "soft" draft centres like Newark and Jersey, while others found other centres less accommodating. Discrimination? Ok, I would not like a known drug dealer, or a known paedophile to come near my grandchildren. And I would like also to discriminate between my own discrimination and that of Donald Trump.
  3. Joseph, thanks for clarification. So there were 15,000 transgender military (give or take a few) in the Forces prior to the "ban" being lifted - assuming they have not all joined up since. The ban was lifted and now, as a consequence, having "outed" themselves, may have possibly created a "problem" of which Donald Trump may or may not have been informed about by the current crop of generals. So there we are. As Romansh implied, too many "may haves". Tweets have consequences, as does being economical with the truth. As far as my own view, all discrimination is wrong. But so what? The President of the United States evidently does not agree. Travel bans, walls, whatever.
  4. Donald Trump’s proposed ban on transgender service members is facing opposition from more than 50 retired generals and admirals who are warning that the discriminatory policy would degrade military readiness and harm morale. The top military officials said in a letter published Tuesday that transgender military members “must not be dismissed, deprived of medically necessary health care, or forced to compromise their integrity or hide their identity”. It comes less than a week after the president announced on Twitter that the government would not “accept or allow … transgender individuals to serve in any capacity in the US military”. The statement – signed by 56 retired admirals and generals and released by the Palm Center, a San Francisco-based research institute – adds to the mounting pressure against Trump to back away from the policy, which has also faced resistance from US defense chiefs, LGBT rights groups and conservative politicians. “This proposed ban, if implemented, would cause significant disruptions, deprive the military of mission-critical talent......" The above, in heavy type, taken from an article in a UK Newspaper. I assume its report is true and not "fake news" (which seems to be the first accusation these days when anyone does nor wish to accept an unwanted fact........ ) Obviously,not having served myself, Mr Trump may well know more than I. Exactly what advice he receives from his current generals is again unknown to me. Given Mr Trumps appointment of a Climate Change sceptic, Scott Pruitt, as head of the EPA (When 97% of scientists are NOT sceptical of climate change!) perhaps indicates the level of advice Mr Trump seeks, that maybe he is inclined to hear only what he wishes to hear? (Another clue to this latter attitude being that of Mr Trump's is surely the merry-go-round of sackings, appointments and re-appointments of his staff which we seem to hear about so often)
  5. Well, in his Tweet ( apparently his chosen organ for announcements and whatever occupies his mind at any particular moment of time ) Donald Trump questioned the economic viability of supporting those in the US military who were "transgender". Apparently about 15,000 people. The tweet ( of no consequence ) led to a few articles in the UK press about the various contributions of such people in the past, in both the USA and Great Britain. Worth looking up. Off topic, but mentioning "Great Britain", we now get a transcript of an interview given by Donald Trump to the Wall Street Journal - at least a mode of communication one step up from tweets. "Don't hear the word Britain any more.Nope". Which reminded me that over here we don't hear the words "President of the United States" anymore, just "Trump". In my opinion he has demeaned that high office and turned the Presidency into a cheap soap opera. Blame the "media". No, I don't think so.
  6. Stephen Fry's observations on Mr Trump.
  7. Yes, he is a loose cannon with no apparent capacity for self-criticism. I could go on ( and on and on ) but will end it there.
  8. In true obedience there should be no ‘I want this or that to happen’or ‘I want this or that thing’but only a pure going out of what is our own. And therefore in the very best kind of prayer that we can pray there should be no ‘give me this particular virtue or way of devotion’ or ‘yes, Lord, give me yourself or eternal life’, but rather ‘Lord, give me only what you will and do, Lord, only what you will and in the way that you will’. This kind of prayer is as far above the former as heaven is above earth. And when we have prayed in this way, then we have prayed well, having gone out of ourselves and entered God in true obedience. But just as true obedience should have no ‘I want this’, neither should it ever hear ‘I don’t want’, for ‘I don’t want’is pure poison for all true obedience. As St Augustine says: ‘The true servant of God does not desire to be told or to be given what they would like to hear or see, for their prime and highest wish is to hear what is most pleasing to God. The above is from Meister Eckhart's talk on "True Obedience" from his "Talks of Instruction". Obviously couched in theistic language yet many in the non-theistic tradition of Buddhism recognise in Eckhart a "dharma brother". As I see it, much revolves around selflessness, in all its guises. Which is not to lose the self, but to know it for the first time.
  9. Paradoxically, perhaps, my own journey away from "vaguery" and towards objectivity, was found and completed within the "mystical", even the "no-self" of Buddism. Maybe, as Thomas Merton saw, the "true self" ( of whatever Tradition or Faith) and the self we often identify with, particularly in the Western Tradition, are two different things. Whatever, goodbye to all my readers.
  10. Anyway, whatever, as I see it, the "way" is eternal, forever available. If we want some Biblical authority, then "the lamb who was slain before the foundation of the world" will do. The whole idea of any human being needing some missionary of a particular Faith to turn up before being "enabled" is distorting. To think in this way appears to me to imply that Christianity is uniquely unique (!) and that every other Faith in the world is somehow, in someway, lacking. It further implies that Grace itself is not adequate ( and if such is not realised then, as I see it, Grace is not understood and the life of grace is not lived)
  11. Possibly the indigenous population of America never realised they were now "enabled" until Columbus turned up on their doorstep.
  12. For me each and every word comes under the umbrella of "Reality-as-is". Lived, not defined. Sorry. But yes, interesting to ponder upon the various ways each word is understood by different people....musing over a good pint of ale.
  13. Thanks Paul. Excellent point about babies and bathwater. I think sometimes as old ways are felt inadequate they are totally thrown away. As you suggest, there can be a degree of natural evolution, a deepening. At the moment I am reading once again the Journals of Saichi, the Pure Land myokonin ( saint ) Truly, a very fundamentalist Baptist would empathise with virtually all of Saichi's cries, exclamations and insights. Yet after my own journey through Mahayana Buddhism, zen, Pure Land thought and practice, the Protestant Fundamentalist beliefs of eternal hell, election, damnation are just not found within my own heart, my own life, my own experience, in my own reading and contemplation of the texts. I realise that what is eternal, what is real, what is true, is the heart of faith, not the beliefs and assertions of a particular historically conditioned creed. What remains is Love, a process that holds us all. No one is excluded. It is the Journey itself. We just have to learn not to cling, not to seek for justification by "belief" no matter how venerated by any tradition.
  14. Hi Iani, welcome. I think the faith of each of us is forever "emerging". Reality is infinite. "The culmination of knowledge is love"
  15. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8O1CcwYf79I The link above is to the video released in relation to the Grenfell tower block fire. It is really astonishing the sheer range of comments being made on social media and Newspaper websites. A world in miniature. From "banal" to "moving", from "I've never heard of any of them" to..............well, it just goes on. Really, the NT text comes to mind, the one that speaks of every judgement we make being in a sense a judgement on ourselves. In the UK the Grenfell fire could become a watershed for fundamental change. Change to what? One overwhelming image I have is of the firefighters entering the building when the instinct of anyone would be to get as far away as possible. It brought back the very same image from 9/11, when, as the public was running and screaming and panicking (as I would have been) the NY Firefighters were entering the Towers and walking up the stairs. "Heroes" is not adequate.