I often receive “hits” and subscriptions from readers who are much more conservative than I appear to be and, yes, even more than I am. I hope that it is recognized that my faith is no longer “ex” clusive and that it includes those of a conservative stripe, a culture that provided me my spiritual, intellectual, and emotional roots. I am very proud of this background. I sometimes think that some of the people who drop by here do not know what they have gotten into. But, I’m glad that each of you are here even if you have just dropped by for a “cup of coffee” and I will not see you again.
Faith is the bedrock of my life and I’m only now tippy-toeing into its riches and find it a mysterious and elusive, though ever-present domain. I’ve spent my life trying desperately to “wrap my head around ‘it’” and realize that this ego pursuit has been a “work of the flesh” and clearly a demonstration of “riding an oxen, trying to find an oxen.” I even had a dream months ago which suggested I was no longer riding the oxen but was on the ground, plodding along behind him arm-in-arm with a brother. W. H. Auden offered relevant wisdom, “The Center that I cannot find is known to the unconscious mind. There is no need to despair. I am already there.”
The mistake I have made spiritually and emotionally is that fulfillment is “out there.” I gathered that validation is to be found externally but the teachings of Jesus, contrasting with much of the Christian tradition, is that “the kingdom is within” and failure to orient oneself in that direction is to submit to “the letter of the law” which, according to the Apostle Paul, “kills.” And as one of my many literary kindred spirits, Shakespeare, put it, “Within be rich, without be fed no more.”