From a practical point of view, the holiday is a federal holiday which means government employees get the day off. It is not a celebration, however, in which all Americans participate equally. Neither in body, spirit, nor enthusiasm. Not like Thanksgiving. There are no common rituals. There is even a failure – gasp – among the A-, B-, C-list bloggers to hungerly contemplate the relevance of Freedom and Justice – the things that Martin Luther King, Jr. spoke so passionately about.
So you say you want to make a better world? Really?!
Anyway, fluffing the day (MLK Day) is inappropriate – if you say that you are a proud and belligerent American. [grin]
Blog Soup 2011.11.07. Unbid Tears, Love, Hope, and A Little Imagination
On the street I saw a small girl cold and shivering in a thin dress, with little hope of a decent meal. I became angry and said to God; “Why did you permit this? Why don’t you do something about it?”
For a while God said nothing.
That night he replied, quite suddenly:
“I certainly did something about it. I made you.”
I read a lot of blogs. Maybe, too many. I comment on a lot of blog posts. Maybe, too many. If you are a Triberrati, you do too.
A Triberrati is a blogger that stands out in the Triberr community. Triberr is a web app that connects bloggers and helps them to curate each other on Twitter. You can learn all about Triberr by reading any of the following posts about it.
May it take no more suffering of a righteous man
for us to see the error of the ways, the loss in
the coarseness of our land, the silver lining
may it shine, for all to see, heed its call
to reconcile to each other, seal the breach
the loss we all share, the responsibility too
to make the bonds anew in troubled times
reclaim that which was lost before he fell
the latest metaphor, the latest martyr
to a failed collective age
all about me no more for we cannot
will not understand the taking the pain
of innocent blood, holy blood shed
so that we might see, change our ways
act now act differently to one another
to each other, as the son gave his life
for our sins, may we acknowledge
the sacrifice just paid for what it is
a chance to change course
heal this city, reclaim it for our own
neighbor by neighborhood.
Brené Brown, Strong Feelings, and an Invitation to Do More than Imagine
Most of my readers will know of Brené Brown from her TED Talk about the power of vulnerability. Brown relates human happiness to human connection and whole-heartedness. Those who are most happy are those who live whole-heartedly, explains Brown.
More importantly, Brown explains that to live whole-heartedly means to feel strongly including strong feelings of compassion, sorrow, empathy, disappointment, shame, etc.
I mention Brené Brown because this edition of blog soup invites you to feel strongly. On a Monday – no less! This blog post invites you to struggle with strong feelings of sorrow, shame, and compassion. This blog soup is about human pain, suffering, and need. It invites you to share in feelings that are as wide as humanity and the world AND reach as high as heaven.
If you believe in God, I invite you to share in one of the most profound feelings that radiate from the heart of the Creator. For those who know anything about God, know that God looks upon us, into us, and through us with a constant sorrow and sympathy – not scorn!
If you do not believe in God, I invite you to share in a feeling that unifies the human family at it’s most profound and collective depth.
The invitation is not to a deliquescent, drug-like emotion to be tasted because it can be tasted and blow our minds. The invitation is to participate in creation, to realize our passion through action, and to make this a better world today, immediately!
This invitation is partly what social media is about. And if not at all, social media has been a waste of human effort, hope, and imagination.
Just some of the blogs that I recently commented on:
Marjorie Clayman wants you to donate $12 to Luma Mufleh’s Fugee village.
I was over at Amber-Lee Diddle’s blog and Amber-Lee insisted that we check out Marjorie’s blog post about Fugee village.
The good news is that Marjorie is going to blog again. She’s not going to continue with her blogging sit out until 400,000 people donate $12 each to Fugee village. The better news is that she helped get more than 60 people to make donations to Fugee village.
Some may suggest Marjorie is an impetuous drama queen, but I understand her want to do something epic for a good cause. I understand Marjorie Clayman’s urgent and deeply sincere want to see something happen right now. There is no reason we should hold Margie to the fire by her ankles.
After all, I am trying to give away some cool things to help Nisha Varghese. You can see it here. But it looks like I have failed to succeed to inspire people to give to Nisha’s cause. I can’t even boast being responsible for 60 donations of $5. And I won’t hold it against the world.
For me, it’s in God’s hands. I showed up. I did all that I could do. And so did Marjorie Clayman. She showed up and so did her friends: Amber-Lee, Nancy Davis, Eleanor Biddulph, Brandon Duncan, and others.
Carey Fuller is a homeless parent in Seattle. She works two jobs and lives in a van with her children. In her video, Carey shares the common challenges trying to keep her family together – challenges which you or I have no idea about.
Writes one commenter who confirms the challenges that Carey speaks about:
Being homeless is exhausting in EVERY way imaginable. My schedule looked a lot like yours. Find somewhere to park > Try to sleep > Find somewhere to cleanup in the AM > Get the kids to school > Call places for help/look for a job > Pick the kids up > REWIND!
Carey, I admire your tremendous courage and humility. My prayers are with you.
Reflecting on Carey’s struggle, I can hear John Lennon singing the words:
Imagine all the people sharing all the world. You may say that I’m a dreamer. But I’m not the only one…
Forty years ago, John Lennon’s Imagine hit number one on the UK charts. More about that here and here.
I don’t know why Ameena’s comment took me by surprise. Because she was honest? Or because I didn’t expect an outgoing blogger like Ameena to feel that way about the world?
Trust, I believe, is a cornerstone of engagement, human relationship, community, government, business, civilization, knowledge, science, hope… and, yeah, everything beautiful, good, and true!
And yet I am intimately familiar with betrayal, abuse, violence, crime, disappointment, unfair competition, slander, etc.
It’s not all or nothing with me except for the most exceptional or unfortunate of cases. Forgiveness, for example, is an important decision that I cannot ignore in my response to others – even those who have harmed me.
So, yes, I continue to take risks in matters of trust especially in regards to friendship, love, faith, or compassion. Nor am I so agile, deft, or insensitive to avoid considerable and deep pain, disappointment, and deception.
Eye of the Tiger, Ameena?! [big hug] Who are you fighting, silly?
I’ve got a new, more powerful mantra for your consideration: All You Need is Love
Often, I do not spell out the social media lesson. I treat my blog posts that do illuminate social media DOHs as parables. The parable here is especially elusive and I allow it to remain so. Because we must accustom ourselves to the reality that the heart will know things long before the mind can comprehend.
Some of you may know that I have recently made several comments on Bruce Sallan’s blog post, The Value of Money and Occupy Wall Street, and to the comments there. However, the most important of those comments, perhaps, is the one I publish here. I understand that it reproduces poorly here out of context – at least at it’s start. Because I begin my comment by addressing a comment that attempts to analyze the OWS movement according to Martin Luther King, Jr.’s philosophy on civil disobedience and non-violent protest.
At the end of my long comment, I answer the question, what is Occupy Wall Street about.
I may be wrong. And I may be mistaken about many things. It is my intuitional opinion and it being an opinion and an intuition, it is neither necessarily right, wrong, worthwhile, nor useless. It just is.
You be the judge of whether or not my opinion speaks loudly to your heart or not. Because you alone are responsible for what you accept into your heart as a compelling instance of the beautiful, the good, and the true.
Empty-handed and less traveled roads. And other social media DOHs. by Stan Faryna
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There are bloggers that I cherish, like, and fan – bloggers who have embarked upon a pilgrimage to fame, fortune, success, and happiness. They travel a road less traveled – in a manner of speaking.
These bloggers arrive at destinations (100 readers/month, 1,000/mo, 10,000/mo, 100,000/mo, etc.). They often arrive empty-handed with great expectations and hope. They move forward into empty-handed whole-heartedness. They move forward undaunted by disappointment and seemingly unrewarded faith, due diligence, and sacrifice.
They connect. They uplift each other. They do amazing things, day and night. They declare victory in the midst of the test. Again and again.
I relish and celebrate their courage, fortitude, and hutzpah.
The trials of these brave bloggers remind me of my own pilgrim’s progress. My disappointments. And my spiritual defeats.
Grace, Max and Lumi reviewed the different footage of the incident as captured by the K-9 units. Eight videos were being projected simultaneously on the wall of the living room of their Sanctuary apartment.
They hadn’t gone down for dinner. In fact, they had missed lunch as well. They just weren’t hungry. They all felt a little dizzy, a little sick to their stomachs, and they had headaches.
“Everything is different now…” Grace said as tears flowed down her cheeks. “We only have each other now – this is what’s left of the world. This is it! Things aren’t going to go back to the way it was…” Read the rest of this entry »
Where is the Love, The Black Eyed Peas
Sucking in Syria
Syrian protesters are dying. Everyday, it seems. Maybe, eight were killed yesterday. Four, the day before. More Syrians will die, tomorrow. Through links on Twitter, I’m getting to see some videos of the dead and dying. There’s blood. Tears. Crying. There’s the crack of AK47s.
The protesters are demanding Freedom. Change. Opportunity. Reform. They want to make a better world.
Syrians are not just dying. They are being murdered. The killing is intentional.
Protesters are being murdered by soldiers or police who have been ordered to do so by their government. They might not look like you or me. They may not even speak the same language. But, unless, you are hopelessly all wrapped up in you, you know that other people are losing the people that they love and care about. In an instant.
In a gruesome, grim, split-second instant, love seems to be cancelled.