I love that feeling I get when I’m climbing out of a hole, even a shallow one. There are certain markers that indicate I am making progress in handling the stuff of life that we could just as well do without.
1) The bills are paid.
2) My son came to visit.
3) I’m swimming regularly again.
4) I’m getting to AA meetings.
5) I sleep when I need to.
Today I had lunch w Mrs CorC?. I went to the Y and swam. I did not worry about the state of my stomach. I saw friends at the Y. They seem to be doing well.
We ate our back log of leftovers tonight. When the news upset me, I turned it off.
A good day.
I read this article with a great deal of interest. It is tempting to dismiss this as the musings of some sort of conspiracy theorist, but I believe there is real substance to his criticism.
We have grown to accept uncritically the notion of a “population bomb” to use Paul Ehrlich’s phrase. It is, or claims to be a premise based on observation and analysis of impartially obtained data, except we rarely scrutinize the theory or challenge its conclusions.
There is a push back against the globalists occurring throughout the Western democracies. The nagging question, “What does globalism have to do with saving souls?” doesn’t seem to be echoing through the halls of The Vatican. That is a disturbing question., disturbing in its absence.
Our proclivity to sin, or concupescence, hasn’t gone away.
“Consider the lilies of the field,how they grow. They toil not, neither do they spin, yet I tell you that Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed as one of these.” St. Matthew 6:28-29
This is the time of year when this passage particularly comes to mind. It is in that portion of St Matthew’s Gospel where much of Christ’s teachings, like The Sermon on The Mount, are found.
The power of the metaphor of lilies is compelling and broad in that nearly all of us can relate to the beauty of flowers.
You don’t hear much about the Shakers anymore. Sure, you can sing The Simple Gifts (think Copland’s Appalachian Spring ), collect some fine baskets, or acquire some superb furniture. But the Shakers are extinct. Why? They practiced celibacy on a grand scale. They eschewed reproductive sex. So in order to survive, the Shakers needed to attract new members from the world outside of their own ever-shrinking sphere.
Today, we live in a culture, poisoned by the ruminations of toxic intellectuals, like Paul Ehrlich, who decry the natural human impulse to procreate and perpetuate, not only the human species, but human cultures. These cultures are not merely the Western European cultures; Japan, through the practice of birth control, is experiencing a demographic collapse. China has a bleak future, brought on by the Maoist “One Child Policy”. As college students in the Seventies, we were constantly advised to adopt Zero Population Growth as a cultural value. Having more than two children per family was, at the very least, bad form, morally irresponsible, at the worst. Men became little more than human drones (“sperm donors”). Women, in the name of feminism, rejected what defined them as women. And for anyone, man or woman, to state this, is to invite anger, fury, and scorn. A child became The Ultimate Pet. About 35 years ago, in the mid-1980’s, I noticed more and more people refer to their dogs and cats, their pets, as their “babies”. Again, many of you will minimize or ridicule this observation.
The culture has rejected its own survival, guaranteeing its decay. Thanks to wide availability of artificial contraception, and the cultural value of sex as little more than primal recreation, we are dying out, much like the Shakers.
Except there will be a remnant who will survive at first, then ultimately flourish. Much as a forest regenerates itself after a calamitous fire, those who reject the contraceptive paradigm will preserve Western, Judeo-Christian, Catholic Civilization, where both males and females will be valued. And these humans will be valued from conception til natural death.
The tradition started after the American Civil War of putting flowers and flags on the graves of the war dead. So the story goes, the graves of both Union and Confederate dead were “decorated” and this common gesture of remembrance helped heal the wounds of the most catastrophic war in American History. Sometime in the 1950’s Decoration Day became Memorial Day. And in the 1970’s the day celebrated moved from 30 May to the last Monday of May. We remember the dead from all our wars on this day.
At least we say we do. Mostly, we start “Summer” on this day. This weekend is when the public outdoor swimming pools open in the parts of the country where year round outdoor swimming is not possible, We start eating outdoors with backyard barbecues. All in all, the tempo changes to summer mode.
Virginia and particularly Richmond, where I live, has many sites of Civil War battles and, consequently, cemeteries for the war dead. Arlington National Cemetery is on the site of the Custis-Lee Mansion, seized by the Federal Government for just such a purpose.
In the Culture Of Fun which is America in the 21st Century, remembrance takes a backseat to Fun.
Yesterday, a wonderful picture composed itself. The first day lily of the season bloomed with the red roses on the trellis in the background.
And with Sunday being our 17th wedding anniversary, what a marvelous picture to text to Mrs CorC?.
She worked a late shift, arriving home after midnight. She was in no way ready to get to the 11:00 Mass. I went alone, a little begrudgingly. Church reaffirms my commitment to my marriage, the calling to live for something larger than myself, the bond between my wife and me.
Sunday was Trinity Sunday, wherein the Church reaffirms its teaching on the Three Persons (Father, Son, Holy Spirit) within the One Godhead. Father M said the interwoven nature among the Three Persons is all about relationship. OK. Enough on that.
After Mass, I head home. We go to lunch before she goes back to work. We share a tasty almond cream cake at an Italian restaurant.
Tonight, If you ask me to define Love, I will tell you that Love is the ability to transcend resentments, to aspire to a higher purpose, such as an enduring marriage.
A few years ago, before my surgeries, I went to the Indian/Halal grocery to get some goat meat. While there, I saw a bag of chickpeas that looked thick enough to stop a magnum round. It was 3 lbs. So I bought it, thinking I will make my own hummus and felafel one day. That day finally arrived. The pressure cooker makes easy work of cooking the garbonzos. And a good blender/ food processor makes the prep for the hummus easy. The Kitchen Aid stand mixer makes easy work prepping the felafel. I use Moosewood Cookbook for the recipes for both. ( Hint: If you don’t own a copy, acquire one. It is one cookbook worth owning.)
The felafel met with some push back from Mrs CorC?. She is not exactly a culinary experimenter. She did eat them and found them palatable. I experimented with how to cook them; I found cooking them on the convection setting at 350° worked very well. They browned up nicely. There was no fat used in cooking them in the convection oven. I ate them in a BIG salad (Seinfeld). Earlier I tried them stuffed in a pita half. That’s OK but the salad offers more flavors to complement the spicy felafel. Moosewood has a yummy tahini/lemon sauce that is fantastic with the felafel.
Other than cooking, straightening, organizing, and waiting for my government check, I’m keeping out of trouble.