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Month: June 2009

Belief and Reality

This has happened twice now, to my amazement and embarrassment. I have woken up twice absolutely beyond a doubt that our little puppy was in the bed with me. In both cases I was a bit puzzled at how she got there, since every night she sleeps in her kennel, and she is as of yet not able to jump into the bed on her own. But I knew she was there. I felt her, and even once picked her up. I told Ed that she was in the bed, and he heard me and remembers this happening. Only it was not our puppy that was there. The little furry body I felt was one of our kitty cats that does indeed like to curl up next to me at night. The time I picked her up I even remained convinced that it was the puppy until Ed corrected me and turned on the light and I had to admit that I’d been deluded. It’s a further reminder of me of how vulnerable the human brain–my own in particular–is subject to delusion. And no matter how much you are convinced and know something is true, it doesn’t mean it is. Questioning your perceptions and getting confirmation from another person always helps in determining if your perceptions match...

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Who am I?

When I was a teenager I used to think a lot about the question “Who am I?” Lots of descriptive words would pop into my mind: daughter, student, reader, Christian…the list could go on. But the more I thought about these words the more I realized that they do not say a thing about who I am. They only describe different aspects of me. I read during my exploration of Buddhism that the thing we know of as “I” disappears when you look for it and that indicated that it is does not really exist. This is consistent with my own experience.   However, I still feel some need to identify myself, and my list has changed quite a lot since I was a teen. You will probably note that I listed “Christian” as one of my identity words. Yea, “Christian” was a huge part of my identity and for a time in my life my life practically revolved around that piece. If you asked me who I was when I was a teen, that is likely one of the first words I would think of after my name. A lot has changed since then. I’m aware that lots of atheists out there do not consider “atheist” to be a large part of their identity. And it’s probably fair to say a lot of Christians do not consider it to be a huge...

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Dr. Tiller and Satya

It’s getting longer than I like between posts so I think I should write an update. First of all I was totally saddened and PISSED at the murder of Dr. Tiller. Anyone who has seen my Facebook page knows this well. What upsets me the most is the cavalier and even sometimes gleeful attitude of some pro-lifers. As if they are saying “well, we don’t condone murder, but he had it coming.” In response, I have pledged $10 a month to Planned Parenthood for the next year–probably longer. I am utterly convinced that it was the hateful rhetoric of groups like Operation Rescue that killed him–not just some loner with a gun. It take everything in me to remind myself that most pro-life people are good people concerned with protecting babies, even if they have been badly misinformed about the facts around abortion and filled with the fore-mentioned hateful rhetoric. And that brings me to my next thought. One of the teachers at Yoga East has been talking about a yama each week, and recently she brought up Satya. This is usually translated as truthfulness. Here is what a quick Google search brought up on the topic. Satya (Truthfulness) Satya means “to speak the truth,” yet it is not always desirable to speak the truth on all occasions, for it could harm someone unnecessarily. We have to consider what we...

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