Posts Tagged ‘Diane Rehm’

Psalm 112:7: Evil Reports


Bus station in Durham, North Carolina in 1940.          JACK DELANO/WIKIMEDIA COMMONS

Wednesday, August 17, 2016

We receive many reports of evil in a world that is increasingly interconnected, and too often it is difficult to sort reality from illusion. Recently Diane Rehm featured “Two perspectives on life in the Jim Crow South: how white children learned to believe that black Americans were inferior and the crushing conditions that motivated millions of African Americans to move from the South in search of a better life”.

Racism, tribalism, discrimination and bigotry distort our perception of who we are and who we might be. For the just one, the psalmist tells us, conducts affairs with justice, is firm of heart and steadfast in the Lord. The just one does not fear an evil report. Might we say that we have such confidence? Might we say that we have no fear of evil reports?

When we listen to the podcast of Rehm’s show, Two Views of the Jim Crow South and its Legacy Today, we might determine how fear moves us into or out of the world of bigotry. And we might consider the legacy we pass on to our children. And we might determine to take some action – either small or great – to show that in the face of evil reports, we will refuse to teach hatred of the other to future generations.

For the Rehm podcast, click on the image above, or go to: https://thedianerehmshow.org/shows/2016-08-10/two-views-on-the-jim-crow-south-and-its-legacy-today

For a Noontime reflection on Psalm 112, go to: https://thenoontimes.com/2012/03/30/the-just/

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Luke 7:36-50: A Prayer for Throwing Stones

Sunday, July 31, 2016Defenseless under the night

When we read this familiar story with new eyes, we see Jesus once again teach the Pharisees about how to handle the anger they feel when they want to throw stones. His capacity to forgive amazed those who saw him at work and made the Pharisees uneasy.

The others sitting at the table began to say to themselves, “Who is this, who even forgives sins?”

Jesus continues in his compassionate Way, calling others to follow.

But Jesus said to the woman, “Your faith has saved you; go in peace.”

And so today we pray for ourselves and others in the moment when we want to throw stones in anger or fear.

Merciful and forgiving God, we need the strength of your faith to sustain us through our anxiety and alarm. Abide with us in the journey of Jesus’ Way.

Compassionate and guiding God, we need the joy of your hope to nourish us through our pain and suffering. Abide with us in the pilgrimage of our lives.

Healing and transforming God, we need the consolation of your love to carry us beyond all distrust and doubt. Abide with us in the mystery of your Spirit. 

We ask this in your name. Amen.

Eleanor Roosevelt in her youth

Eleanor Roosevelt in her youth

As we consider the fear that has a way of settling into our lives with or without our noticing, we might find this interview with historian and political scientist Matthew Dallek interesting. He is interviewed by guest host Derek McGinty on the July 26 edition of the Diane Rehm show. Dallek’s book Defenseless under the Night: The Roosevelt Years and the Origins of Homeland Security explores the evolution of the response to fear that we see in the U.S. public today. Listening to this interview may give us a new perspective on our desire to throw stones. Visit: https://thedianerehmshow.org/shows/2016-07-26/matthew-dallek-defenseless-under-the-night

To learn more about Eleanor Roosevelt, visit: http://www.firstladies.org/biographies/firstladies.aspx?biography=33 or http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/americanexperience/features/biography/eleanor-biography/

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Philippians 3:7-12: The Mystery of Altruism

Sunday, June 28, 2015

Matthieu Ricard

Matthieu Ricard

Whatever gains I had, these I have come to consider a loss because of Christ.

On June 15 this year, talk show host Diane Rehm’s spoke on the topic of altruism with her guest Matthieu Ricard. Ricard, a Frenchman who left a career in molecular biology for life as a Buddhist monk, has published an international bestseller, THE MONK AND THE PHILOSOPHER. Listen to some of the podcast today to discover why “Ricard argues that altruism is the key to solving major world problems like inequality and climate change”. Like Ricard, we ask ourselves about the mystery of altruism: How is it that consideration of others solves challenges more efficiently than power, money or fame. http://thedianerehmshow.org/shows/2015-06-15/matthieu-ricard-altruism

monkphilosopherWe might consider reading some of Ricard’s words as we contemplate the mystery of how we become strong in our weakness and confident in our vulnerability.  We may also want to explore the relationship Ricard has with his atheist father and discover how East meets West in this intimate relationship. For a quick review and a link to an audio version of THE MONK AND THE PHILOSOPHER, visit: http://www.enotes.com/topics/monk-philosopher

Or listen to Ricard’s Ted Talk and learn about how the evolution of cultures can bring about change in the world through enhancing cooperation rather than competition, sustainable harmony rather than sustainable growth, caring economics, local commitment, global responsibility, and an extension of altruism to the other 1.6 million species on the planet. Consider how these ideas mix or clash with values that Jesus brings to us. Listen, watch, and learn about qualitative simplicity at: https://www.ted.com/talks/matthieu_ricard_how_to_let_altruism_be_your_guide


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