Thursday, November 18, 2004

Note: Blogging goes through seasons for me. The season has changed. The new season is one of sharing morsels from stuff I've read over the last decade. This is a helpful way for me to review. If you find it useful or enjoyable, that's an exciting bonus. Someday a season of personal sharing will re-emerge. Just not right now. Instead:

Thought #1: "An entire book could be filled with examples of how people pathologically escape from their ambivalence by running with only one side of it. Suffice it to say that the healthiest response is usaully to live with it -- to live with the existential suffering of uncertainty & conflictual feelings . . . . the healthiest resolution of deep ambivalence requires facing it over an extended period of time & with a great deal of psychospiritual work, including often the work of depression."

Thought #2: Dysfunction is in all families, but some produce more pain than the child can bear. Therefore, pain-avoidance strategies lead to either neuroses (it's all my fault) or character disorder (nothing is my fault). Neuroses & character disorder are always a substitute for legitimate suffering.

Greatest mystery: some people have strong will to grow; others don't.

(both thoughts taken from Denial of the Soul by M. Scott Peck)

Tuesday, November 16, 2004


"The number of people who have fled the church because it is too patient or compassionate is negligible; the number who have fled becasue they find it too unforgiving is tragic."

"The success or failure of a given day is measured by the quality of our interest & compassion toward those around us."

(taken from Abba's Child by Brennan Manning)

Sunday, November 14, 2004

Breaking Bread

One definition of family is "those who eat together."

"Eating together helps people get over fights. Since friends and families share food, the action of eating together can ritually express what is held, shared, and enjoyed, after all, in common; it therefore signifies the dropping of hostilities."

"In many cultures, two people do not feel they can talk in a friendly way with each other unless they have first eaten together."

"Eating together in private entails and 'means' marriage: it involves sharing the same house. Ceasing to eat together is tantamount to divorce . . . . [eating togehter] contains the suggestion of sharing the same private space."

(taken from The Rituals of Dinner by Margaret Visser)