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Garage Sale Spirituality Since when could anyone find spirituality in garage sales? Just think about the junk, the mess, the work, the dust on items left in the garage for months…years!  This is all as mundane and earthy as it gets, and utterly disgusting! Yet in every aspect of garage saling there is opportunity for spiritual experience and meaningful soul growth.

On Consumption (May 2013)

Quaker Culture: Plain Speech At the time when Quakerism began in the seventeenth century, the expression “plain speech” had a particular meaning for Friends. The plural form of the second person in English (you) was used to address someone of distinction or higher social status. The singular form (thee) was used to address one’s peers. George Fox and his Quaker followers chose to use the singular form to address everyone, reflecting a firm belief that all are equal in the eyes of God. The grammatical distinction has long since fallen into disuse, even among Quakers who continued the practice well into the twentieth century. The underlying belief, however, remains intact.  

On Superiority (July 2013)

Feeling Light Within, I Walk - Review Feeling Light Within, I Walk: Tales, Adventures & Reflections of a Quaker Activist

On Superiority (July 2013)

A Victory with the IRS Dear Western Friend: In the time since I wrote the article about my frivolous filing penalty with the IRS, there have been some new developments. I would like to share the end of the story. I thought it had ended in August of 2012 when I agreed to pay a $500 penalty instead of the $5000 penalty. I was blue about this, but did feel that it was the best decision considering the situation. It turned out that the $500 had already been taken along with an extra $200 from our daughter's college fund. So the IRS owed me $200. I kept looking in the mailbox for it, and my partner Tim kept laughing.

On Superiority (July 2013)

Tenants and Tenets Dear editor: I read with amusement the memorial minute in the May/June issue that referred to the person's "commitment to the tenants of Quakerism.” While it is quite true that many in our meetings seem to be leaseholders of our faith rather than owners and thus in great need of support from others, it would be better still if Friends understood that our faith has no tenets and that "Quakerism" as an ideology is a corruption of our faith.

On Superiority (July 2013)

Gun Buy-Back Dear Editor:  I thought your readers might be interested in this timely article. I've written a lot about this issue on my blog ever since we started our "turning swords into plowshares" campaign three months ago.

On Superiority (July 2013)

Love the Prisoner Immigration Customs and Enforcement (ICE) is the branch of Homeland Security that runs immigration detention centers in jails and prisons across our nation.  Because most detainees are not charged with “crimes,” they are held in “civil” detention. This particular fact is at the heart of my story. Men and women held in immigration detention have none of the “rights” we associate with our criminal justice system: no right to an attorney, no right to a speedy trial, no right to a phone call, no right to have visitors.  ICE often shuffles detainees among different facilities around the country.  This means that for families and friends, their loved ones can suddenly disappear to places too far away to visit. 

On Love (September 2013)

Quaker Culture: Queries Friends’ Queries started early in the history of Quakers, and the primary focus of monthly Meeting for Business was once to to examine and respond to them corporately. Today Queries are sometimes used to prod us into a reexamination of our faith and how we practice it daily. Queries can be used as daily devotional readings. The Advices sometimes provide helpful suggestions as we try to put our faith into practice. We read the Advices and Queries in our Meetings for Business as a reminder and to open ourselves to the possibility of receiving useful ministry on that month’s topic.

On Deception (November 2013)