How Best To Define “Youth”?

Poem: Youth by Samuel Ullmann. Is my youth gone forever? Youth is a state of mind. Youthful dreams are fresh and exciting. I am a work in progress.

Typically, when writing posts in this series, I begin with a quote and then speculate about its meaning. But today I’ll present both of these aspects differently. Having reached that exalted threshold of senior citizenship, I must admit to experiencing many more aches, pains, and physical restrictions than I did even ten years ago. As a kid, I often wondered why older people always seemed cranky and had frowns or scowls on their faces. Now I understand – getting older means a lot of physical discomforts, so what’s to smile about? Continue reading “How Best To Define “Youth”?”

What Is A True Friend?

(Image: Courtesy of Pixabay)

“Wishing to be friends is quick work, but friendship is a slow-ripening fruit.”
~ Aristotle

“Friendship is a single soul dwelling in two bodies.”
~ Aristotle

Friendship is a reality that is tied to our need to be loved. Part of our socialization experience is to seek out friends that bring us many things within our comfort zone. In my last post, Anger: Is It Good?, I explored this powerful emotion which sometimes plays a part in the development and/or the breakdown of our friendships. In this post, I intend to explore the nature of that special friendship, the true friend, with the assistance of the great Greek thinker, Aristotle. Continue reading “What Is A True Friend?”

Anger: Is It Good?

(Image: Courtesy of Pixabay)

“Bitterness is like cancer. It eats upon the host. But anger is like fire. It burns it all clean.”
~ Maya Angelou

“Whatever is begun in anger ends in shame.”
~ Benjamin Franklin

“Anger and intolerance are the enemies of correct understanding.”
~ Mohandas Gandhi

“The world needs anger. The world often continues to allow evil because it isn’t angry enough.”
~ Bede Jarrett

Clearly, my topic is anger. Today, as is our practice, my wife and I ate breakfast watching a morning TV news show, and the broadcast was riddled with horrific stories featuring outrageous behavior. Not good for the digestive process, you say? Perhaps, but if you are not totally desensitized by the daily bombardment of social violence, physical and otherwise, the reports will serve to raise your blood pressure. What would cause that, you ask? Good old fashioned anger is my response. Continue reading “Anger: Is It Good?”

What Price, Freedom?

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We, the People, recognize that we have responsibilities as well as rights; that our destinies are bound together; that a freedom which only asks what’s in it for me, a freedom without a commitment to others, a freedom without love or charity or duty or patriotism, is unworthy of our founding ideals, and those who died in their defense.

~ Barack Obama

President Barack Obama needs no introduction here. Suffice it to say that he is missed for his grace, his indefatigable spirit, and his love for his fellow man. The concept of freedom has been on my mind, and I find these words spoken by Barack Obama at the Democratic National Convention in 2012 to be uplifting. Continue reading “What Price, Freedom?”

Indifference Is The Enemy

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“The opposite of love is not hate, it’s indifference. The opposite of art is not ugliness, it’s indifference. The opposite of faith is not heresy, it’s indifference. And the opposite of life is not death, it’s indifference.”

~ Elie Wiesel

My previous post, What Price, Freedom? probed the meaning of freedom within the context of a free, democratic society. How is it that the world stood by and witnessed the Nazis deprive thousands of people their freedom, their human dignity, and their very lives? Elie Wiesel, a Holocaust survivor, encapsulated the explanation in a single word, indifference.

Wiesel (1928 – 2016) was a Romanian-born American Jewish writer, professor, political activist, Nobel Laureate and Holocaust survivor. He wrote 57 books, written mostly in French and English, including Night, a work based on his experiences as a prisoner in the Auschwitz and Buchenwald concentration camps. Continue reading “Indifference Is The Enemy”

Enemies of the Writer

“As I sit back and I observe I have come to understand that doubt and fear is a major contributor and enemy of the writer. It creeps into the mind, seeps into the soul and gnaws the bone. It gets down so deep inside the author that it bleeds through the pen and taints the words. Next thing you know every time you look up that writer is not a writer anymore. That writer is a shadow of his former self, wallowing in self-pity and doubt. That writer has allowed fear to creep in and to steal his gift.”

~ Yecheilyah Ysrayl

Yecheilyah Ysrayl is a blogger, author, poet, and book reviewer who lives and writes in Louisiana. These words were in a post I received this week as a subscriber to her newsletter. Apparently, these words resonated deeply with me. Continue reading “Enemies of the Writer”

Do You Want to Ban Syrian Refugees?

A new public opinion poll was released yesterday that claims that 25% of respondents believe that Canada should adopt a similar ban on Syrian refugees that has been enacted in the United States. No matter how you look at it, that is a significant number of people advocating the ban. Continue reading “Do You Want to Ban Syrian Refugees?”