Stanford Searl

Beauty and The Gadfly

Dear Editor:

Thank you for Western Friend and the May/June issue that included Joe Morris and his piece, “Longing for Beauty.” For many years, I have worshipped with Joe at our Santa Monica Meeting and his reflections about beauty – and its potential power to heal – moved me, greatly. What wondrous love is this!

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The Gathered Meeting

I began my spiritual journey toward “the gathered meeting” when my wife and I visited her youngest son in Durham, North Carolina, in January, 2018. While there, we attended Durham Friends Meeting one Sunday when maybe a hundred adults and thirty-five children were present. The meeting felt settled and centered.

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The Illusion of a Split

Even though Quakers possess skills in conflict resolution (as well as conflict avoidance), a perplexing conflict seems intractably lodged in our Quaker community: a split between Quakers who are drawn primarily to the spiritual side of our practice – emphasizing silence, contemplation, and stillness over all else – and Quakers are who are committed to social action – including demonstrations, l

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In Memory of the Gold Star Mothers

I worried
when the Black River was so low some years,
poking along underneath
the Main Street bridge
in front of our home
on Memorial Day.

The Gold Star Mothers
had just arrived
in one of Ludlow’s only convertibles:
they struggled out of the car
wrapped around in American flags,
looking enormous
waddling up to the edge
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