Showing posts from October, 2013

What makes a saintly woman?

The saintly woman three generations ago was defined by from what she abstained.  Perhaps the saintly woman of today is defined by how she exhibits compassion.  Those in their 90s today define godliness and being set apart as related to a moral goodness that is internal.  Yet, when I look at the term godly or righteous, I see it in terms of external relationships, how one interacts with the stranger.  When I put these two models side-by-side, I experience a bit of friction.  I love the sinner by inviting him in, she loves the sinner by keeping him out.  She is set apart by her personal lifestyle of abstaining.  I am set apart by my personal lifestyle of engaging. We read the same passage of Scripture and hear different things.  What did it mean when Jesus said to treat the obstinate as one would a pagan or tax collector? (Matthew 18:17)  What did he mean when he invited us to live in the Spirit instead of by the flesh?  Did the flesh refer to the law or to a form of immorality?  
We a…

Kafka's Metamorphosis - Perceptions Exposed

I think Franz Kafka is a beautiful and insightful writer with whom I am just being introduced.  I love the way he is able to describe the un-approached aspects of routine daily living as one who is a keen observer of the unspoken realities of life.

"'What if I went back to sleep for a while and forgot all this foolishness, 'he thought. However, this was totally impracticable, as he habitually slept on his right side, a position he could not get into in his present state;..." 
 "The door could not be heard closing; they must have left it open as is usual in houses visited by great misfortune." 
In the first chapter of Metamorphosis, Kafka transforms the external appearance, the body of a man named Gregor to match with his internal sense of other's perceptions of himself.   His body begins to feel and express itself much like his internal sense of well-being.  As one who regularly struggles to wake up in the morning, I identify with his description of h…