Monthly Archives: January 2017

Cravings & You

This should be short and sweet (OK, maybe I do pun sometimes. What’s the pun? I craved picked beets, and not all sugar is made from cane. Some of it comes from beets).

Every once in a while, I’ll get a craving. Sometimes it’s real, and sometimes it isn’t.

So why are there real and unreal cravings?

Well, the answer to that involves a story from my life (really? Like I NEVER tell stories about me here – for those humor-challenged, yes, that was sarcasm).

During much of my childhood, adolescence, and young adult years my parents often blamed my weight on “sneaking food” or when I hit teen years, that I must have an eating disorder. (Yes, fat people can have eating disorders. And yes, even anorexia and bulimia).

At one point my father insisted I join an eating disorder support group. Well, less of a support group and more like group therapy.

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Loving Your Enemies — Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Christmas 1957 Sermon (PDF, 0.192 Mb)
— Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

Too many white people, including those who consider Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. to be a role model, forget that not only was he a Civil Rights leader or a Nobel Peace Prize Laureate but also a Baptist minister. They seem to only think about the one speech — “I Have a Dream.” Coming from a very religious family background, I cannot forget he was a minister.  And as such, I have been trying to read through his sermons.

Sermons are essentially lectures with a Biblical basis (usually a particular verse or set of verses). Watching my father prepare his sermons and listening to them in church, I can also tell you from personal experience that they also teach you about the character and integrity of the minister.

Particularly important to our current situation is this sermon from November, 1957.

There is a culture of hate and demonization that is splitting this country apart. Sadly, I am seeing many  parallels between our current situation and both the causes of the Civil War (1861-1865) as well as the Civil Rights movement (that most of us seem to date as only being inclusive of 1950-1970, but truly is still part of the whole issue that the Civil War brought to light and honesty – and still continues today, because it has never ended).

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Divination, Prophecy & Fear

 

The real difference between divination and prophecy is that prophecy claims to be a communication directly from the prophet’s form of the Divine and is purported to give a more globalized view. Divination, on the other hand, is a way to assess trends in one’s personal life (either the diviner’s life or the person they are doing it for).

However, both come through the mind of the person giving the pronouncement. Many prophets claim that since the source of the prophecy is the Divine that there is no interpretation. A good example of this is Book of Revelation in the Bible. Except, even though this is considered to be the “inspired word of God” (essentially directly from God through the pen of the writer — with no interpretation) there have been centuries worth of assorted interpretation of it in different ways.

But, it doesn’t really matter what claims that are made. It doesn’t even really matter what the prophet or diviner thinks about it.

The reality of the situation is that no matter the source, communicating that information still has to come through the mind of the person making the proclamation. This means that the information received is given a subjective twist.

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What is missing from ‘How did this happen?’

One of the biggest question many people have been asking themselves since the election is “how did this happen?” I’ve heard many different theories, most of them regurgitating the same old political lines. Well, they might have some truth to them. Is the Democratic Party guilty of elitist progressivism? Definitely. Did they railroad Hillary Clinton candidacy, regardless of any other option? Probably. Has the Democratic Party focused more on urban areas and academia to the detriment of rural Americans? Again, definitely.

The issue is that both urban and rural areas have some similarities, but those similarities are part of the problem. Population density has been the basis of most of the programs, initiatives and policies by our government (including those that have been bi-partisan). It should be obvious that rural areas, by definition, have lower population densities than urban areas. Unfortunately, our leadership (including many Republicans) has ignored the shrinking ability of these communities to support the needs of their people.

However, there is a portion of our nation’s citizenry that many people do not understand. Moreover, I have yet to have seen any discussion of them. These are our fellow citizens who are evangelicals. In fact, when people talk about them, it is usually quite derogatory or mocking. We also tend to give them short shrift because the urban poor are obvious to anyone who spends time in the poorer sections of our cities. The rural poor? The nicest stereotype is Cletus the Slack-Jawed Yokel (from the Simpsons, seen to the right) or maybe the Beverly Hillbillies.

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The Difficulties of the Dead of Winter

No, I’m not going to start moaning and crying about the weather.  Nor about SAD.

However, they do have their place in this post.  I have not been able to keep up with regular posting since Thanksgiving. What I finally sat down and recognized is that I have become more easily overwhelmed.

You have to understand, my family (like myself) can be quite boisterous.  Even my elder sister, who is the least boisterous of us all, has what people have called an “overwhelming personality.” Though, I have to admit, there’s a bit of a tie whether my personality or my Dad’s is the more overwhelming in the family.

When we get together as a family, as does happen during the holidays, too much togetherness can be very overwhelming.  As I work through my issues, I am relearning to actually recognize the first warning signs, which I have in the past learned to ignore or suppress.  It doesn’t mean that I stand up and have a hissy fit about being overwhelmed, it means that I need to recognize the first signs so that I can take a few minutes away to recenter myself.  And if I need more than a few minutes, I need to learn to not feel guilty that I need that space.

But my family is not the only people in the world who can be overwhelming. Sadly, I’m just not quite sure how to communicate that need for space, for breathing room, without the person(s) I’m talking to either going into their own guilt spiral or worse, stressing their resentment about the fact that I need that breathing room.

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Romance: for the sake of love

 

I have quite a number of hang-ups about my romantic relationships. Frankly, enough to put a few therapist’s children through college.

And, no, it isn’t about my ex — other than to be yet another clue about why I stuck around so long.

It comes down to a fear of being alone.  But it is a very specific kind of being alone: only romantic loneliness.

As an ambivert, there are times when I need to be alone, and times I need to be around people.  And I’m good with that.  I don’t have a lot of fear about friends and family.

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Categories: Relationships | Tags: , , , , , | 2 Comments

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