PoHymn: A Rustling in the Stagnant … March 23rd, 2016

 Jonathots Daily Blog

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PoHymn Judas

The Unusual Suspect

Did you know the man?

Please tell us what you can.

Did he live alone?

Ever use your phone?

Was he the kind to smile?

We need this for our file.

Would a woman make his day

Or was he openly gay?

Believe in the divine?

Seeking for a sign?

Search your memory.

What did you watch and see?

Would you trust him with your kid?

Did he ever flip his lid?

When did he come for dinner?

A loser or a winner?

Silver seemed to be his preference.

Do you know of any particular reference?

Go by Judas or Jude?

Was he ever rude?

What about the number thirty?

Would you describe him as timid or flirty?

Did you see any of this coming?

We hear he was often heard humming.

What was his favorite tune?

He moved here back in June.

Anything weird that comes to mind

Will give us the motive we need to find.

Was he on the level?

Did he worship the devil?

What would be your vote?

Did he leave a suicide note?

‘Cause he’s dead, you know

By a rope.

Went completely nuts.

Couldn’t cope.

Search your memory

Nothing’s too small

We’ll leave you our card

Give us a call.

For we need to close

This stupid case

Of this careless sumbitch

Who betrayed our race.

Sorry to bother you.

Thanks for your time.

Sometimes there is just

No reason or rhyme.

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Healing … February 11, 2013

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There is only one limitation in life–one, and one alone.

We are only limited by the boundaries of “normal” which we establish, prohibiting us from receiving inspiration beyond our permission. That’s it.

The more commandments, rules, doctrines, political parties and philosophies you adhere to in order to corral your spirit and willingness to change, the less likely you are to ever be enlightened.

When folks tell me they’re a Republican, what they are trying to say is that I need to stay within the parameters of their thinking–otherwise they will be forced to repel both me and my ideas. If they tell me they’re Democrats, likewise–it is a warning that I need to maintain a total and complete respect for the dominance of that particular profile.

It does not anger me; it does not frustrate me. It just makes me sad that we think any one given collection of ideas has the capacity for handling the intricate need of the human heart.

The world needs a healing, undoubtedly. But merely being cognizant of a cure or trying to establish a prescription for treatment is not what is required to get to the root of the problem and soothe the aching need.

After my presentation yesterday, a dear woman came to my table and told me a bit of her history–how she had been filled with the Holy Spirit and was working with the elderly. She said she found herself wanting to pray for them. In the process of pursuing these supplications to God, she deeply believed that the Lord had placed a touch on her life, to grant her the gift of healing.

I listened. I didn’t listen as a cynic. I didn’t listen. wondering if I agreed with everything she said. I didn’t listen, considering whether it totally lined up with my theology or intellectual profile. I just listened.

She asked me if she could pray for my knees. There was only one answer. Yes. Why would I want to deter someone from granting me a piece of tenderness, perhaps insight and gentle relief to my faltering joints?

  • Yes. Pray for me.
  • Yes. Meditate over me.
  • Yes. Summon the reincarnated spirit of your grandmother from the Brahma bull for me.

Why do we think we have to be so suspicious–when it’s obvious that we all are needy? I look for three things, and when I see them in a human being, I embrace them:

1. “I care.” No one has anything to offer mankind if they haven’t developed a brokenness in spirit that causes them to really care. You can’t teach it in seminary. You can’t earn a degree from a college which transfuses that feeling into your soul.

2. “I’m aware.” Yes, for a moment, I’ve stepped out of myself and I’m noticing that you exist. I see you–not just in relationship to myself. I see you as you are.

3. “I share.” Even though I don’t have silver and gold, what I do have I give to you. I don’t have all the answers, so instead, receive my love.

Those are the three things that bring healing. And whether you believe in the gift of healing or not, would you agree with me that this gift would certainly be accompanied by I care, I’m aware and I share?

So you can continue to be “normal,” squelching all attempts by God and the universe to enter your back door with some unexpected delivery. Not for me.

I’ve let down the guard of many of my pre-conceptions–so the heavens have a chance to conceive something … inside me.

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The Missing Interview … August 14, 2012

  • Loser — Part 1
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During the Olympics, when they had an interview with visitors to London about the various styles of fish and chips, you realized that they had reached the end of possibilities for making the event any more marketable. After all, seventeen days is a long time. Even when you’re talking about athletes from 204 nations converging on a single city in an action of sporting pleasure and worldwide unity, it still loses some of its glimmer when you cross about twelve days–especially when you consider the rewards system.

Because in the midst of all that coverage, there are many interviews with many people who are participating and later winning in the games. I listened to them intently and like everyone else, was deeply impressed with those athletes who won gold medals, especially in multiples. I found it somewhat interesting when they would have a conversation with a particular sportsman from a small nation who won a silver medal which ended up being the only one his country acquired.

But the obvious missing interview was the discourse with the individual who, through much effort and training, was able to win four bronze medals.

A set of 1998 Winter Olympics medals on displa...

A set of 1998 Winter Olympics medals on display at the Hockey Hall of Fame (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Yes, for some reason or another, NBC, which certainly became desperate for feature stories, still did not consider a third-place finisher who had achieved it several times to be worthy of air time. Perhaps the Olympics was the beginning of the notion that prizes should be given not only to the winner, but also to those who come close.I’m sure I would feel differently if I was an athlete at the Olympic Village, but somehow or another, bronze leaves me cold. I’m not particularly thrilled with silver. And I know that I’m not alone here. Because even though they do tally the silver and bronze medals, it is worse than an afterthought, but rather, a necessity brought to our attention because the Olympic Committee decided to offer also-ran prizes.

Yes–the missing interview is with that guy or gal who won the most bronze medals. It’s just difficult to celebrate their position. It would be similar to attending a party of an individual who lost on Jeopardy! who decided to be festive by inviting all of his friends to his house to indulge in enjoying the Rice-a-Roni he got for third prize. It leaves something to be desired.

It’s not that I’m saying that people who come in third in the Olympics are mediocre. It’s just that we need to stop trying to make people feel that they have achieved what they really haven’t. All of us are trying to escape self-deception, and it doesn’t help when the world around us encourages it.

If you won a bronze medal, you’ve really lost. Maybe you came to London to win bronze. I guess that’s possible. But somewhere along the line in your training, even if you were pursuing third place, you would have a particularly good day of exercise and begin to believe that first place was possible–so therefore, disappointment is inevitable.

The only thing we all share in common is that we’re all, at one time or another, losers.

In other words, we lose. There are three deadly reactions to losing that eliminate us from further human contact: (1) anger–an abstract sense that life sucks and is not fair; (2) excuses–going through a litany of possible explanations of why you didn’t get gold; and (3) resignation–“oh, well, it was just never meant to be” or worse yet, “it was just God‘s will.” All three of those positions drive other human beings away like an odor hanging in the air from a busted port-a-potty.

What do you do when you’ve got five bronze medals that accurately telegraph to the world that you’re a loser?

1. Be grateful you’re healthy. In the pursuit of gold, you became a phenomenal physical specimen. Amazing. You are in a tiny percentile.

2. Realize that you got to play with the best. There is a difference between winning first place at your high school talent show and coming in third on American Idol. The difference is that you have a clear understanding of what it means to bark with the top dogs.

3. Know that you got to be part of something great. For the rest of your life you will get to say that you competed in the Olympics. Now, there’s always some jerk who will ask you if you won any medals. After about a year, bronze will start sounding better and better.

4. You learned what you can do and what you can’t. The beginning to all future success is putting your abilities to the test and finding out where you leak. You can plug the leaks or you can avoid exposing them. Either way, you’ve got information.

5. You can take the adventure and rather than experiencing humiliation, mature it into humility. When we are not ashamed of what we’ve done, we can be honest about our place in life. It gives us a humility that makes us attractive to our fellow-travelers. It is a benefit you receive only when you don’t win the gold.

So there you go. Even though there was a missing interview with that bronze champion, he or she will come out of the experience having been surrounded by the same intensity, beauty, power, fellowship and pageantry as all those who won gold.

It’s just a matter of taking the best from every experience and using it to increase your next possibility.

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