Cromey Online

The writings of author, therapist, and priest Robert Warren Cromey.

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Location: San Francisco, California, United States

Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Sacrifice and the Draft

My statement at the “Eyes Wide Open Rally” at the Federal Building in SF on 5/3, 10:00 AM.

The Sacrifice of the Young in a Call for the Draft.

Americans have not suffered enough. Soldiers sent to Afghanistan and Iraq have suffered plenty. So have their families, so have the citizens, civilians and military in those countries.

We at home have suffered little. The president goes to his land in Texas and drives around in his car, amiably saying hi to his neighbors. Many of his neighbors die in the Middle East.

Our lives go day in and day out with no real interruption. Baseball and basketball, the symphony, opera and theater go on entertaining us as our soldiers are killed each day.

We have not suffered any new taxes to support the war or to care for the thousands of wounded and maimed in the president’s war.

We sit quietly and comfortably in our homes while our soldiers fight a war where there is no army, only guerillas called terrorists.

We pray for an end to the war in our churches and it costs us nothing. We get angry and enraged about this senseless war and we feel no pain. Frankly, we are not hurting enough to end this disastrous war.

We need sacrifice.

We need to withhold our taxes and take all the risks and consequences that entails. Ask Joan Baez about that when she did it in the Vietnam era.

We need endless actions of disobedience in front of Federal Buildings, the White house and the House and Senate Buildings.

And most important, we need sacrifice. I call for a draft of young people to go into the military to support and assist the exhausted soldiers now in place.

I have six grandchildren who might be liable to be drafted into the military. I would hate for them to have to go. But nothing will move the present president except political power. Watch the politicians run for cover if we who are concerned for peace and justice gain sufficient power to call for a draft.

The Congress will have to debate human lives, not easily spent dollars.
The Congress will have to face their constituents with the idea of sending more young Americans to the President’s stupidity.
The Congress will have to see how grass root Americans really feel about this war as they seek voter approval for a potential draft.

Let us bring a wave of passion to sacrifice our young to end this war. Let us bring a wave of honest patriotism to support our troops by adding newer, younger, riper men and women to get us out of the horror Mr. Bush has created for us and the people of Iraq and Afghanistan. We need a wave of passion to end this stupid, immoral and sin filled entanglement.

The draft and all peaceful means must be done in the name of human kind and peace on earth.

Thursday, May 24, 2007

Falwell Helped Us Liberals

We liberals should be grateful to the late Jerry Falwell and the right wing, conservative, fundamentalist Christians for a number of important issues he raised.

Falwell and Christian conservatives want the Bible back in our schools. It certainly is absurd that the reticence of the liberal Christians has allowed anti-religious secularists, as characterized by the ACLU (of which I am a devout member), to stop teaching the Scripture in many public schools, colleges and universities throughout the United States. On the pretext that Bible instruction melds the separation of church and state, the Bible is banned by law or regulation. Of course, the very banning of the Bible is a violation of that separation for the government is interfering with the practice of religion. Unquestionably, it is secular-sponsored anti-intellectualism as well.

How can students understand Western culture up to this very day if they
don’t know something about the Bible? European and American histories are dominated by religious ideas drawn from the Bible’s Ten Commandments and the prophet’s appeal for justice in the courts and compassion for the poor and the widows. The Medieval and Renaissance periods, Dante, Shakespeare, Milton, the founding fathers of this nation, and the words of Abraham Lincoln, just to name a few, draw deeply from Biblical literature.

Falwell and his fundamentalist brothers and sisters have made the Bible an object of worship. They pick and choose passages to prove their political and sexual agendas. They want these promulgated in our schools. Even though I disagree with their idolatry of the Bible, any thoughtful, intellectual and liberal Christian would want the Bible available for study in the schools.

Falwell and the fundamentalists are married to the Republican Party. The right wing’s attitudes on abortion, immigration, homosexuals, welfare, racism and idolatry of Capitalism are consistent with the views of many in the GOP. We liberals should, at all costs, urge them to back the Republicans so that the sane center in the United States can see the Republican conservatives continue their inhuman, illiterate and hate-filled propaganda. It will wreck the party in both the short and long term. We can thank conservative Christians for damaging the Republican Party.

Another way so-called religious conservatives have helped the liberals is
in their opposition to taxing clergy housing allowances. In 1997
Congressional experts made another attempt to tax the exempt housing
allowances of clergy. The Church Pension Fund of the Episcopal Church urged clergy to write their representatives and preserve that tax benefit. The conservative churches, using their political muscle, helped enormously in preserving that clerical perk that we liberals enjoy.

Soon we will see secularists go after the tax exemption to churches and
religious organizations. Cities will try to tax presently exempt real
estate on which churches sit. Congress and the California Assembly pay
chaplains to open their deliberations. Preachers may even be stopped from praying at the presidential inaugural. They will force the president not to take the oath of office on the Bible.

The military academies now have compulsory chapel attendance which may be prohibited. They employ clergy to run those services. The military of the United States pay chaplains to minister to soldiers, sailors and air force personnel. The newly secularist interpretation of the separation of church and state calls into question government funding of those religious activities. Religionists of all sides need to see that secularists, in their attempts to exclude religion from the society, are interfering with the practice of religion.

The secularists screamed when Hilary Rodham Clinton was seen wearing a simple cross around her neck at a public occasion. This was called an invasion of the principle of separation of church and state. That criticism was a call to interfere with the practice of the first-lady's religion. She is a member of the Methodist Church.

In March of 1998 a member of the California State Assemble e-mailed his
colleagues inviting them to a Bible study group. The secularists created a
furor saying that using the government’s e-mail network violated separation of church and state.

I wrote the following letter which was published in the San Francisco
Chronicle on March 10, 1998.

To the Editor of the San Francisco Chronicle:

What a riot. Some folks in the California Assembly object to invitations to Bible Study. (SF Chronicle, Wednesday, March 4, 1998)
Carole Migden et al suggest separation of church and state should prevent Assembly members from sending religious invitations through the e-mail. One might suggest that preventing those invitations is the state interfering with religion.

On the whole Christian fundamentalists are abhorrent to me. But I’ll bet there would be little such objection if our brothers and sisters who are Muslims, Jews and Roman Catholics invited Assembly members to study the Koran, Old Testament or New Testament.

Besides, a dose of Bible study might teach our legislators something about love, justice, caring for the poor and homeless.

Here is an example of lawmakers using the idea of separation of church and state to halt an invitation to Bible study, a legitimate religious activity. Fortunately for us liberals, the right-wing Christian fundamentalists will fight to preserve the preservation of religion in the culture. The great liberal Bishop James A. Pike, himself a lawyer, used to say, "the separation of church and state does not mean the separation of church and society." Americans, for the most part, are a religious people. We don’t want special privileges but we do want the state to desist in undermining our religious heritage.

We liberals can thank Falwell for stepping in and calling attention to the secularist encroachment on the religious values honored from the days of the founding fathers – freedom of religious practice, knowledge of the Bible and respect for the religious nature of a large number of Americans.

So let’s thank Falwell and Christian Conservatives for helping to advance the political rights of liberal Christianity and religion in general. While it is hard for me to have Falwell rest in piece, may he rest.

Friday, May 18, 2007

Mississippi Mission Trip 11 May 6-12, 2007

by my daughter Leigh Lindsay

The good news is that we found New Orleans and the Gulf region much improved; the bad news is there is still much work to be done.

As we landed in New Orleans we noticed immediately that there were many fewer blue tarps on rooftops, a sign of re-building. We also noticed leaves on the trees. Last year the trees were struggling to produce some scruffy leaves, this year everything was green and lush looking. The French Quarter was hopping! Restaurants and bars were open; music of every type projected onto the streets, and throngs of college students walked around carry in Hurricanes or the bright green drink in a long, tall plastic glass.

Fourteen of us spent the next week in Long Beach, Mississippi at Camp Coast Care. Even CCC was looking up! The long awaited move out of the Coast Episcopal School gym and into the adjacent brand new facility had just been completed two weeks prior. The new volunteer space was hardly luxurious but a definite improvement with more bathrooms and a larger kitchen. The “dorm” contained rows of bunk beds with milk crates as nightstands but the place was clean and air-conditioned.

Similar to last year our group participated in a variety of projects. Many of us spent time at the Thomas house nailing up sheet rock, then mudding and taping to make the walls smooth. Robert, the grandfather of the family was there working along side of us. He was a wiry man, very friendly and grateful. My favorite memory of my day there involved a trip with Mary Beth to the Porta Potty a couple of blocks away. As we took turns using to facilities a heavy set black woman walked across the street, asked us where we were from, and gave us both huge hugs and thanks for not forgetting the people of the Gulf. She beckoned her friend over for more hugs and thanks. Mary Beth and I knew we were doing the right thing.

Another project involved building a deck and steps on a house that was up on the now required stilts. This house was one of only 2 or 3 actual houses on this street not far from the beach. Mostly there were trailers and the broken remains of small houses and sheds. This was a neighborhood that was not in great shape before the storm and Katrina did nothing to improve it. We did however! We (under the leadership of Claudio) built a beautiful deck, front steps, and a side landing and steps. The owner, Daniel came around a few times and gave his approval. We loved seeing his sense of whimsy in his choice of bright blue and purple paint for the bedrooms. Yellow paint was to go up next in the living room. At least now he had a way to enter his home without having to climb up the scaffolding.

A third “project” involved remaining at Camp and helping to maintain the facility. With many volunteers coming and going each week much effort needs to be put into cleaning the dorm, the bathrooms and the kitchen. In addition, although there was a paid cook volunteers were needed to assist with the prep of three meals a day. Our group assisted admirably in the cleaning and especially the cooking.

In spite of working hard, often outside in the mid-May Southern heat, it was not all work. It seems that working hard all day lends itself to having a good time in the evenings. Our group did a brisk business at the local liquor store and at the nearby Mexican restaurant that had only been opened since Easter. We made good use of the fire pit behind the CCC building, enjoying cool evenings talking about our days and our lives. We met and got to know some of the staff and other volunteers from South Carolina, California, and even Canada.

During our stay a man from Toronto named Peter and his dog Buddy were at camp. Peter was the truck driver who made the very first delivery of donated goods to Camp Coast Care shortly after the storm. We enjoyed watching the documentary of that trip made by Doug (also there during the week) for Canadian Public TV called, “Long Haul, Big Heart.” It was very special to meet Peter and Doug and share their memories and experiences.

We were glad to see a major improvement in the area since last year. More stores and restaurants were open, more homes had been rebuilt, and the people generally seemed upbeat and moving forward. There were beautiful “new” homes built overlooking the beach and right next to empty slabs. The small amount we did to help the people of this area is at its greatest when combined with the volunteer efforts of hundreds of others both before and after us. Lots of small steps will add up to rebuild the homes and lives of people in the Mississippi Gulf.

-Leigh Lindsay

Monday, May 14, 2007

A Visit to Cornerstone Church 5/13/07

Ann and I went to a Mission District of San Francisco, contemporary church, called Cornerstone this Sunday past. Music was by electrical guitars and drums, all rocksy and rollsy. The songs, which were faintly religious, were flashed on a screen for all to see – no hymnals or prayer books or Bibles. Songs were repetitive and reflected religious notions like hallelujah, Jesus is lord, savior, friend etc. It reminded me of the repetitious black gospel music but without the passion, pain or uplifting abandon.

A young pregnant woman who shared her insights into motherhood quite thoughtfully gave the sermon. It ended on the note of “Jesus will see you through your troubles.” There was an excellent play on motherhood, its trials and tribulations. It was realistic, helpful and respectful of mothers and their vocation. It ended on the note of everything will be fine, work hard and trust in Jesus. I wondered what happens if you have been trusting in Jesus and your kid turns out to be a dope addict? Did Jesus not love you? Did you not trust Jesus enough? The theology presented was simplistic and immature.

The place was mobbed with five hundred people and we went to the middle of three services that morning. The crowd was most 20-35 years old with 100 older people like us. There may have been more older women since it was mother’s day. The service took exactly one hour a huge plus for busy and impatient people like me.

We pressed an usher and discovered they believe homosexuality and abortion are sins. They don’t mention it in their sermons or printed materials but do so in their membership classes. They offer a group for men seeking to restore their Godly sexuality. I had heard that about them before so I wasn’t even surprised. I believe it is the music that attracts the young people; the leaders were attractive, humorous and sincere. The message was that faith in jesus is simple, moral problems are seen as black and white. It is not my cup of tea for regular worship but an interesting example of contemporary religiosity.

They have a website it gives you lots of interesting information about the groups that week during the week and Sundays. It plays some of the music, which obviously has an appeal – if not for me.

Episcopalians can learn lots from Cornerstone. We were greeted warmly by a young woman who handed us the service leaflet. An usher politely showed us seats as the church was crowding up fifteen minutes before the service. Toilet facilities were well marked. Opportunities for childcare were evident. The leaflet was made of thick paper almost cardboard. It was easy to handle, not flopping over, and it was full of information for the newcomer as well as regular members. Some of the songs and most of the messages related to real life issues facing the congregation that Sunday. Mother’s Day was not celebrated in a sentimental way but in a practical manner. Groups seen to deal with every day issues of people’s lives. There was no mention of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, soldiers killed and Arabs killed and maimed. I have been in Episcopal churches where the war was not mentioned, but not many.

An usher/greeter at the door at the end of the service spotted us as newcomers and engaged us in conversation although he got uncomfortable when we asked him about the church’s position on homosexuality and abortion. But he was there to try to make us feel at home. There was no coffee hour but they could not do that and get the crowds in and out on the back-to-back services.

Principles of church growth:
Welcome newcomers who were invited not give money at the collection; clean well lighted place to pray; user friendly bulletins and liturgy; one hour service; one short reading from the Bible, not four as in Episcopal churches plus long boring Nicene Creed and wordy abstract prayers of the people; sermons and prayers relevant to people not worship of theological ideas; a theme for the service and sermon, small groups and more small groups.

I’ll go back again to hear a sermon instead of the play. Like most Episcopal churches when we got up to leave no one spoke to us except the greeter at the door whom we accosted.

Thursday, May 10, 2007

Nice Response to my Newspaper article below

Robert: I love this letter; it's both inspiring and instructive for those of us who pour our hearts and souls into the paper every day. Obviously, it would look self-serving for us to publish it, but I am going to take the liberty of sharing it with the editorial board and senior editors at the Chronicle. I appreciate your loyal and critical attachment to the Chronicle. Thanks for writing, thanks for your regular contributions to letters to the editor, and we will continue to do our best to remain an important part of your day. All the best to you and your wife, John Diaz, editorial page editor

News from the Newspaper

It frightens me to read that newspapers are losing circulation. Fewer people read the papers than in the past. Many people get their news from the TV and now the Internet. I still prefer the newspaper to these newer media as a source of the news.

The first reason has to do with freedom. I am free to read what I want to read. I skip over items and articles that do not interest me. I’ll admit to glancing at lots of headlines which give me hints of what is going on that have little interest to me. I personally choose not to read about celebrities, murder trials, sports, detailed reports of worldwide problems and classifieds.

I can skip through page after page of paid advertising. I could not pass a quiz on what advertisements were in the pages of the paper, which I had just read. Of course, some catch my eye and perhaps have a sub liminal affect on me. Maybe the cleverness of the advertisement moguls get me to buy stuff by their subtle or even full page blatant messages. But I have the freedom of choice as to whether I read them or not.

I glance at opinion pieces and the editorial page. I read them if I am interested in the topic. I do not read them regularly as I feel their opinion is as good as mine and I generally prefer mine. That is not to say that I do not learn things from time to time from the opinion pages. I do. But on the whole they tend to hold to a party line that I can smell from either seeing their name or a sentence or two into the column. I have freedom.

The few times that I watch the news on TV, I am a slave, a victim to whatever the newscasters throw at me. I cannot pick and choose. That includes the never-ending ads, which are hurled at me with sights and sounds and jabbering idiotic conversations about a product like interest rates at a bank or deodorant. Who in the world cares? I have to endure such idiocy until the next news item comes along which in most cases I have no interest in. But since I am in front of the tube I must hear and see it no mater what. The coverage of mayhem saddens me but I have to watch the latest report of a killing in counties several miles from my home whether I want to or not. In the newspaper I can skip what I do not choose to read.

Freedom of choice is stealthily taken away from TV viewers by seductively promising something else better, more shocking and horrifying than the last item. We are seduced by our own curiosity.

Having a curious mind is a value, almost an idol in our culture. Smart people are supposed to be curious about everything and anything. I am not very smart as I am more and more interested in less and less. Sex, religion, food, relationships, exercise, art and music are about it. That omits math, science, celebrities, sports, politics, education and most of the mass media.

My darling wife admits to being addicted to the newspapers. She will read every word of every article. It takes her a very long time; so long that sometimes she asks me to hide the paper from her.

Having extolled newspaper reading over the TV, I must admit that my 82 year old friend can’t read the papers comfortably any more. His eyes are giving out and there is little hope of improvement. So he is stuck with the TV for which he is grateful. So as our population ages we will probably watch more TV. Or perhaps the newspapers can use larger type. Newspapers on line can probably do that.

Yes, I know, advertising is what pays for the newspapers and TV. Certainly the subscription and newsstand prices could not pay for what we get. My view is that the papers are too much controlled by advertising.
Companies can pull the ads if they disagree with the editorials. The same can happen on TV. In the Imus case, we saw justice done by advertisers saying, “enough.” But usually we see advertisers’ threats emerging on issues of sexuality, challenges to traditional family values or criticizing the military.

Freedom and freedom of choice makes me choose the print media as the best source of news. I can choose what information I want and not have it thrust on me. Besides, I love having my first cup of coffee, sitting in my easy chair and leafing through the morning paper.

Wednesday, May 09, 2007

Prom Baby and Stress

Prom baby refers to high school senior girls getting pregnant at their prom so they won’t have to go to college and face the stress and pressures of student life. Dear Abby wrote in her column that she was appalled at such immature thinking.

However, young people do have a way of getting to the heart of the matter. These young women who hope to have a prom baby see clearly that college and work life are jammed with activities that create stress, anxiety and sickness. They see lives tormented by senseless competition, hours of hard work in school so they can spend even more hours at jobs and professions that may or may not find fulfillment and perhaps riches. They see families broken by divorce, endless fights about money, decisions about accumulation and what to buy next.

My own daughter whose husband is a Yale alumnus does not want her son to go to an Ivy League School, even tough his chances for Yale are good as he is a legacy. She says she doesn’t think she wants to see her son harassed by competition and stress in order to get a college education.

Articles about the deleterious affects of stress on health, marriage and parenting abound. Suicides among college students are increasing. A number of lawyers of my acquaintance are opting out of offices to pursue more enjoyable and fulfilling lines of work even though they will earn less money.

My wife is a high school English teacher and often comments on how hard her students have to work to get into good colleges or any college. They will take as many Advanced Placement classes as possible, have tons of homework and are expected to play sports, be in the school play, chorus or orchestra as well as attend all the events the students put on. Parents push their children into classes where they have no aptitude or interest.

We have a “work hard” ethic in the United States. Working hard is a good in itself. It is the way to get ahead, make something of yourself, make money and presumably live the good life. Working hard is more important than having rest and relaxation. Working hard also means working hard at having fun. Golf, bowling and tennis became hard fought competitive events rather games of fun and relaxation.

I wanted to join an after work softball team in the city one summer. I called the coach and he made it clear he wanted tough, aggressive, competitive players to play on the team so they could beat the other teams in their league. It sounded too much like work to me so I ended my softball career even before it started.

The average American takes a two-week vacation every year. Europeans take an average of four weeks a year and many holidays in addition. Critics of European economics blame their lax working habits for the not keeping up with American output. I say hurrah for the Europeans.

Prom baby mothers will find plenty of stress and hard work in raising a child, putting up with a husband if she has one or raising a child alone. They may live to regret not having a college education. But their desire to opt out of the college rat race and the stress of the “work hard” ethic yells at all of us to examine what we are doing with our lives and the lives of the people of our country.

Monday, May 07, 2007

Health for Aging

My friend the doctor watches elderly people going upstairs at the opera. She sees women stiff, stooped, and shuffling. She sees men stiff, stooped and shuffling. She sees men and women creeping along, cautious, hesitant and fragile. My friend says that with the smallest amount of exercise, simple stretching techniques, most of them could not be so bent, frail and weak. Sadly, many people in their seventies and eighties today were brought up in an era where they and their parents did little exercise, often smoked and paid little attention to their bodies except when they were in pain, having sex, having a baby or trying to lose weight. Bodies were not as important as the mind.

This dualism, or the body mind split, is not uncommon. Most people even today find more comfort in dualism rather than the humane reality of unity. Black-white, male-female, right-wrong, gay-straight, republicans-democrats, Christians-Jews, Muslims-Hindus, good guys and bad guys, body-mind. At the Fromm, the courses are all directed toward the mind. When programs focus on the body through illness, they are presented in lecture, audio-visual form directed to our brains. The leaders of the Fromm are not stupid. They know what older people want in continuing to learn.

The fact is that health means wholeness, unity and interconnection. Jews were the founders of Christianity, and both have much religion and ethics in common. Democrats and Republicans have much in common, but pretend mostly enmity. Men have many characteristics of women, like caring, nurturing and tenderness. Women are often physically strong, competitive and athletic.

When we begin to appreciate our bodies and our minds as a unity we can regain and improve our health. Psychosomatic medicine and psychology have opened our eyes to the fact that things going on in our minds and our unconscious affect our bodily functions. Depression may affect our hearts and blood pressure. Repressed memories may affect our sex life. Trauma in childhood may affect our capacity for intimacy.

It works the other way, too. Chronic pain limits how we relate to others. Heart disease frightens us. Arthritis limits our mobility.

I notice the split in myself. When I take time for swimming or walking, my two forms of regular exercise, I think it would be better if I were reading or writing, as that is really what is best for me and important in life. Brought up in western culture, deep in my psyche I believe the things of the mind are more important than the things of the body.

Yet I know that when I emerge from the pool after a workout, my body feels alive, tingly and vital. I can almost feel my blood flowing. Then in a few minutes that sweet pleasure vanishes as I get in my car and negotiate the trip back home. My mind takes over and the physical feelings in my body disappear.

Eastern religions and cultures seem to pay attention to an integration of the mind and the body. We have seen how elderly Asian men and women do Tai Chi, a movement exercise based on martial arts done gently. We also here in San Francisco see groups of Asian men and women walking in the park or along the sidewalks. Regular movement of the body and exercise keep bodies limber and minds clear. After such workouts scholars go on to their books and studies.

I lived for a year in southern Germany and noticed the great numbers of adults who took regular walks in the city and in the countryside. Notice how children are in constant movement. They play until they drop. Too many Americans shop ‘til they drop. Shopping is neither exercise nor mental stimulation, it is mummifying escapism.

Many older people like to quote Winston Churchill, who is supposed to have said, “Whenever I get the urge to exercise, I lie down until the urge goes away.” He was also known to have stayed in bed all day, smoking cigars and drinking brandy while making decisions about war and government.

As we age we must keep our bodies moving so we do not lose our minds and bodies. We also need to use our brains to convince ourselves that we must move our bodies to ward off pain, stiffness and atrophy.

There is no end of articles on simple exercises that are safe and easy in magazines and TV shows. Even the AARP magazine has exercises from time to time. If you hate exercise and don’t want to do it, the surest way to accomplish that goal is to die. Healthy aging is to use our minds to convince our bodies to move. Healthy aging means using our bodies and our minds to enjoy the fullness of life.

On the Mormons

A Perspective on Mormonism.

For two years young Mormon men and women go on missions to convert people to the true faith of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, the Mormons. They believe it is their duty to bring people to the Mormon way of discovering Jesus and to entrance into the celestial kingdom.

I believe that God is active in all religions. I do not think human beings can limit God's action in the world. The idea that we must go out and convert people to Christianity degrades the religion of others. It is callous and rude.

The emphasis on family life in Mormonism is wonderful and very important. The fact is that the Mormon rate of divorce is about the same as the rest of the population of the United States. I think their emphasis is too great and results in a tyranny of the family. The tensions between community and individualism and family and personal freedom are not honored in Mormonism. Family is first and foremost.

My belief is that when the individual is fulfilled and happy then the family will thrive. The function of the family is to help children become individuals, find their own freedom and values and in fact to leave the family and start their own - accepting, empowering the child to become himself. In Mormonism, the family is more important than the individual.

The Mormons regard homosexuality as a perversion, sin and an abomination. They have opposed domestic partner legislation as deleterious to family life. They oppose all attempts for people of the same sex to have the same benefits in the society as straight people do. Sex acts between same gender people are regarded as disgusting and against the will of God.

Mormons reflect the most conservative American values, interpret the Bible literally and attempt to destroy liberal human values in the name of religion. Of course they are free to exercise their religion. They are not free from external criticism

Sunday, May 06, 2007

Jewish Farmer and the Rabbi

Sermon Illustration

A Jewish farmer lived in a one-room house with his wife, four children, his two parents and three friends. The noise and confusing made his sick and frenzied. He went to his Rabbi for advice. The Rabbi said brings in the chickens and a goat. The man went home and did so. It was worse than even. He went back to complain to the Rabbi who said bring in a donkey. The noise and chaotic was more horrendous then ever. The man, crazed, went back to the Rabbi who said, “Take out the animals.” After the man was home for a day, he noticed a great sense of relief and peace.

From the sermonette on Mormon Tabernacle Choir broadcast 5/6/07