Category Archives: spirituality

On Being Shanty Irish

Some years ago in a long-forgotten novel, I came across the term “Shanty Irish”. It referred to a certain discomfort one might have in the presence of wealth. Shanty Irish refers to those Irish immigrants who, in Ireland or in … Continue reading

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On Grief

“I must go down to the seas again. . .” (John Masefield)     Some years ago,  my Aunt Dorothy died during the middle of the night. She lived alone in Santa Monica but my brother lived in nearby Marina del … Continue reading

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The Spiritual Side of PTSD

I was talking to a young combat veteran yesterday. When I asked him if he’d received any counseling he said “Well, I’ve been talking to my pastor.” This was a reminder to me of the spiritual side of PTSD as … Continue reading

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Quiet Heroes

Hero has become a popular word these days, as it should be. It is being applied to front-line workers battling COVID, to police officers, to firefighters and EMTs, and to our warrior veterans. Indeed these are all people who suit … Continue reading

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Encounters with the Holy

Recently I was standing on a beach in Oregon with my son Matt. We were watching a beautiful sunset and I said to Matt ‘This is holy.” A holy moment for me is not one of good behavior as I … Continue reading

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Larry Doby: An Unsung Hero

Just about everyone knows Jackie Robinson. This great courageous man was the first African American to play Major League baseball with the National League Brooklyn Dodgers. The same cannot be said for Larry Doby. Larry was the second African American … Continue reading

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The Gift of Enthusiasm

One of my favorite sportscasters was Jim McKay of ABC Sports. One of his duties over the years was to host Wide World of Sports on Saturdays. What impressed me about Jim was his capacity to be enthused about any … Continue reading

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Reading the Bible Yet Again!

I just finished reading the Bible again for the sixth or seventh time. Not sure. I remember the first time I read To Kill A Mockingbird. I enjoyed it so much that I immediately reread it. I would be dishonest … Continue reading

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On Asking Questions

Rabbi David Wolpe once wrote that being human includes asking the important questions, asking them again and again and not letting go. The religion I grew up with wasn’t big on asking questions so I was often left to entertain … Continue reading

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Poems as Spiritual Teachers

One of the beauties of the spiritual journey is that we have available to us an abundance of teachers. I have been blessed with many great ones. Spiritual mentors ranging from Henri Nouwen to Abraham Joshua Heschel to Thich Nhat … Continue reading

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