For most of my medical career, I worked in family planning, providing contraceptive care so that children could be planned, loved, and supported. I also performed abortions when contraception failed. For forty years, I have been supported in this work by my Quaker beliefs.
Albuquerque Monthly Meeting is “positioned” in a cultural and political landscape, but I can no more see our position in that landscape than I can see the position of our planet in the Milky Way, or the back of my own head. I can see that our meetinghouse sits on a one-way street in a valley separating the Sandia Mountains on the east from the Mesa on the west.
I was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis (MS) four months after I completed a 150-mile bike ride for the American Lung Association. I was thirty-one years old. Two years later, I had to stop working. Soon, I could no longer identify with anyone I knew. It seemed like everyone was either having babies or working. I was doing neither.
My first job at the American Friends Service Committee was in 1965, when Self-Help Enterprises was being created. This was also my first real experience working with white people, as opposed to working for them, although at the tender age of nineteen, I still did not realize that.
Presence is something I cannot fully describe or understand, informing my life and experience even though it is beyond words. It is a grounding, a solace, a push and shove, a challenge to the status quo. My call to dwell in Presence makes me one of the “peculiar people” and may set me apart even from others who call themselves Quaker.
We gather the children, the tender and shy, the mischievous, lead them to a jagged beach to find their treasures of stillness while their own parents settle into the meetinghouse to gather Light. We let the children wander between piers, time dissolving into moistness. One boy with purple
There are these two young fish swimming along, and they happen to meet an older fish swimming the other way, who nods at them and says, “Morning, boys, how’s the water?” And the two young fish swim on for a bit, and then eventually one of them looks over at the other and goes, “What the hell is water?” – David Foster Wallace, This is Water (2009)
Recent research at the University of College Park, Maryland, has resulted in the observation of a form of matter that was previously only theorized. This discovery may open up a new basis for understanding the universe, while echoing ancient knowledge.