Tag: change

From the Heavy Hand to the Guiding Touch

It was not so long ago that students complained of bloody knuckles from the ruler. This type of treatment was more the norm than the exception in eliciting Catholic guilt, and it did not stop and end at nuns trying to teach mathematics. The heavy hand extended rather clearly – among the initiated – to the pulpit and even prayer, in advance of the rebirth.

We are not fully reborn of course, but there is something to be said for Pope Francis’ light guiding touch that has made the wait and persistence of faith worth it. No longer do I feel quite so guilty for enjoying myself in ways visceral but victimless, should I also pay respect to what is truly good. No longer do I feel the need to hide from authority because they are bound to only see things in the light of what could go wrong as opposed to what could go right. A God merciful to the good of heart, despite a love of life – I have been waiting for it all my life and it is here.

Tomorrow it does not matter if I see the Pope, though I happen to be in D. C. I have already seen the good done in the faces of those estranged from faith and The Church. We have a Pope respectful of humanity and the human condition, in the face of historical demands made in the name of God, though not always true to His spirit. It is a good time to be a Catholic, and a good time for the world to rethink faith.

A Definition of Success

In order to be deliberate in your decision making you must have conviction in how the world is and how you want it to be. You need time and intelligence to understand how the world is and to trust that understanding. You need both of these, as well as an understanding of yourself to understand how you want the world to change. Seeing this change happen is the definition of success for an individual. Understanding what success is for you is the first step towards realizing it.

When I ask how the world would change for me, I hesitate. I do not hesitate for change in my life. I can think of any number of things I would like to change for me. I would like more travel, more time to write, more time to research, more opportunities to give informed opinion to more people, more time with my son, more opportunities for intelligent companionship, more opportunities for sensitive companionship, more opportunities for intimacy, more time among natural beauty, more time drinking with old friends, more time drinking with festive strangers, more time to watch movies, more time to read books, more money to eat good food, more time to watch sports and talk politics with my Dad, more time to talk art and psychology with my Mom… But if I had to say how I would change the world, here I am more reluctant.

I am “live and let live”. I am not one to dictate the world to others unless I know and clearly that they are wrong. I do believe in the protection of the environment; I do believe in security; I do believe in approaching social policy sustainably; but I am passionate about protecting “live and let live”, the variety and diversity of human culture, and faith against the adversarial in spite of adversity.

I can live with moments foiled by adversity, but I can’t live well with moments foiled by adversaries, including moments foiled by adversaries under the cover of adversity or other people. In some sense, this is what Saving Social Faith is really about, saving people from the fear of unwarranted adversaries. For my part, I had always thought I would help with this task with writing and research. I am realizing that I must do more, but it is starting with this.

I will always honor those who save the environment, protect our safety, and think of our future with sustainable social policies; but for my part, I can only work to keep and promote the faith in those who save and protect. If you know of ways to promote a warranted confidence in our institutions, infrastructure, and security, I would like to hear.

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