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Playing Violent Games in Peace In his recent article, “ISIS’s Call of Duty,” Jay Caspian Kang describes similarities between ISIS recruitment films and first-person-shooter games – similarities that are likely intentional (The New Yorker, September 18, 2014). Kang’s article is one of many that play into a larger debate about the role of violent videogames and other violent media in our culture. This debate has continued unresolved for decades, and both sides often succumb to strong emotions and hyperbolic statements. I feel this leads to a shutdown in communication between groups, and that is the issue I would like to address in this article.

On Temptation (November 2014)

Driving as a Spiritual Discipline During the March 2014 gathering of the Friends World Committee for Consultation, I stayed with other Friends at a hostel where we had a bible study each morning before breakfast. Not long ago, I was rather averse to bible study, but I have come to value it immensely when it’s read as Friends often do – “in the Spirit” – sharing how the passages speak to us individually. It was after such a session that I found myself pondering how following traffic laws might be a good spiritual practice.

On Temptation (November 2014)

Faith and Sewage Everyone Poops by Taro Gomi (translated into English in 1993) has been my theme book for years. While it was written with toilet trainees and their eager caregivers in mind, I have other reasons to display the book prominently in my office. I work for a program in our local health department, the program that monitors water quality in streams, lakes, and groundwater, the program responsible for ensuring that the septic systems in our county are adequately treating the sewage that flows through them. That’s where “everyone poops” comes in.

On Garbage (November 2017)