Sunday, November 21, 2004

The Company of Other Goodnesses

All lovers of the spiritual life know the name Rumi, great mystic Sufi poet. But until now, only a scholarly few were aware of the gifts of his father, Bahauddin, 12th-century Persian religious leader. Coleman Barks, poet and admirer of Rumi, and John Moyne, a Persian linguist, have collaborated to correct this deficit and introduce Bahauddin to a more popular audience...

-from a review of The Drowned Book

The Company of Other Goodnesses

..There are lines of sacred poetry that say if the objective is valid, you should take the path all the way to the end and not mind the suffering. If the goal, though, is not true, you will be wasting time no matter what comes of your effort. It's like turning gold into copper. Everybody loses.

Good projects succeed in the company of other goodnesses. If you pass through a cloud of soot, you will feel the grime descend. As you walk the orchard musk, you feel absorbed in fragrance.

This world is an open sky and also a dustbin, giving life to some and death to others; the outcomes are not controlled by this world. Press your finger into the world and put it to your nose. You may smell sweetness, or you may smell dung. Discernment is possible in these matters.

True hearts stay awake if love is possible. The others have no need for beauty, nor hope of it.

If you are holding gold in your hand, don't imagine ways to turn it into mud.

Sunday Recommendations

Sunday Recommendations

To European Friends: Explaining the 2004 Election Disaster, By Bernard Weiner, Co-Editor, "The Crisis Papers." November 16, 2004
"Foreigners have difficulty understanding how Bush could have done so well in the election. Here's an attempt to explain how and why Bush may have won, and why Kerry may have lost. The answers aren't always pretty."

Absolute Power Erupts, By Maureen Dowd, NYT
"It's a paradoxical game plan: imposing democracy abroad while impeding it here."

House Republicans Block Intelligence Reform, by Mary Curtius, LA Times
"Defying their leadership and direct appeals from President Bush and Vice President Cheney, two powerful House Republicans on Saturday blocked intelligence reform legislation that would put a single director in charge of the nation's spy agencies."

Getting Smart, by Karen Kwiatkowski,
"When we want to chuckle or point out a flaw in Washington, we may soon require a Cone of Silence."

Intelligence Overhaul Bill Blocked, by Babington & Pincus, WP

Congress Is Losing Leaders and Unifiers, by Dewar & Pianin, WP
"The numbers themselves are modest, but it's quality that's lost," said Ross K. Baker, a political scientist at Rutgers University, who studies Congress. While Congress is an "extremely adaptable institution" with a constantly changing membership, it is losing some of its best bridge-builders as well as party leaders -- "a huge loss of experience and wisdom of people who know how to get things done," he said."

There's no one left to stop them, by Paul Craig Roberts
"The United States is in dire straits. Its government is in the hands of people who connect to events neither rationally nor morally."

Depression -- And Its Activism Antidote -- Will Lead to Bush's Downfall, By Bernard Weiner Co-Editor, The Crisis Papers, April 7, 2003 (Blast from the past)
*You depressed? I'm depressed, I must admit. If you're a Democrat, if you love your country and are concerned about her and all her people, and you aren't depressed in the least bit, I suggest you check yourself for a pulse! The same radical right wing dolt is still at the wheel, and he's steering us directly toward the rocks of the shallows.