Monthly Archives: January 2017

What Does It Mean to Love God?  Jesus and the Bean Counters

A Buddhist Reads the Bible: Gospel of Mark from the New Revised Standard Version.  Oxford University Press. (This is my seventh piece on the Gospel of Mark; the other pieces are here, here, here, here, here, and here.  I’ll blunder along at my snail like pace until I finish.) The pace of the Gospel of … Continue reading What Does It Mean to Love God?  Jesus and the Bean Counters

And Get Knocked Down the Stairs

Eat Sleep Sit: My Year at Japan’s Most Rigorous Zen Temple by Kaoru Nonomura.  Kodansha. 328 pp.  $16.95. “He’s making the fallacious distinction between the ends and the means.” That sentence was uttered at a Friends Meeting that I attended some fifty years ago, by the man I considered the leading authority in that meeting … Continue reading And Get Knocked Down the Stairs

All Stories Are Made Up

Moonglow by Michael Chabon.  Harper.  430 pp.  $28.00 Voss by Patrick White.  Penguin.  $18.00 The great Pittsburgh writer John Edgar Wideman—whom I wrote about in a recent post—once published a book entitled All Stories Are True.  I thought it a brilliant and fascinating title, but it could just as easily have been All Stories Are … Continue reading All Stories Are Made Up

Difficult Teachings

A Buddhist Reads the Bible: Gospel of Mark from the New Revised Standard Version.  Oxford University Press. (This is my sixth piece on the Gospel of Mark; the other pieces are here, here, here, here, and here.  I’ll blunder along at my snail like pace until I finish.) The Gospel continues with what is for … Continue reading Difficult Teachings

Having Faith Is Not Knowing

A Buddhist Reads the Bible: Gospel of Mark from the New Revised Standard Version.  Oxford University Press. (This is my fifth piece on the Gospel of Mark; the other pieces are here and here and here and here.  I’ll blunder along at my snail like pace until I finish.) My impression of the early part … Continue reading Having Faith Is Not Knowing

The Poetry of Everyday Speech

Fences a film by Denzel Washington.  Screenplay by August Wilson.  With Denzel Washington, Viola Davis, Stephen Henderson, Jovan Adepo. When I was a young man growing up in Pittsburgh, I wanted to be the writer who put the city on the map.  I read Theodore Dreiser’s Newspaper Days; he’d spent some time in the city, … Continue reading The Poetry of Everyday Speech

God Is in the Body

The Awakening Body: Somatic Meditation for Discovering Our Deepest Life by Reginald Ray.  Shambhala.  176 pp.  $16.95 Touching Enlightenment: Finding Realization in the Body by Reginald Ray.  Sounds True.  416 pp.  $19.95 Ever since I began meditating, I’ve found it natural to focus on the body.  When my first teacher Larry Rosenberg gave his initial … Continue reading God Is in the Body