Shine your Light (per Joni Mitchell)

[OCTOBER 23, 2016]

I saw a video of Prince accepting an award. Terse as he was whenever I saw him, not seeming to enjoy talking publicly outside of music too much, and not dropping many names, one of the few performers that he propped up and praised in that speech was Joni Mitchell.
I wondered why he mentioned her as a prime influence. Of all the people who had influenced him; I just had never known. Indeed, she is amazing. I’m glad he did it.
I think during this season, in this climate, in this hour, a song like this one is very timely; politics aside. I think it may show part of why Prince loved her so much.
(for the audiophiles, here you go)


Oh let your little light shine
Let your little light shine
Shine on Wall Street and Vegas
Place your bets
Shine on the fishermen
With nothing in their nets
Shine on rising oceans and evaporating seas
Shine on our Frankenstein technologies
Shine on science
With its tunnel vision, tunnel vision
Shine on fertile farmlands
Buried under subdivisions
Oh let your little light shine
Let your little light shine
Shine on the dazzling darkness
That restores us in deep sleep
Shine on what we throw away
And what we keep
Shine on Reverend Pearson
Who threw away
The vain old God
Kept Dickens and Rembrandt and Beethoven
And fresh plowed sod
Shine on good earth, good air, good water
And a safe place
For kids to play
Shine on bombs exploding
Half a mile away
Oh let your little light shine
Let your little light shine
Shine on world-wide traffic jams
Honking day and night
Shine on another asshole
Passing on the right
Shine on the red light runners
Busy talking on their cell phones
Shine on the Catholic Church
And the prisons that it owns
Shine on all the Churches
They all love less and less
Shine on a hopeful girl
In a dreamy dress
Oh let your little light shine
Let your little light shine
Shine on good humor
Shine on good will
Shine on lousy leadership
Licensed to kill
Shine on dying soldiers
In patriotic pain
Shine on mass destruction
In some god’s name
Shine on the pioneers
Those seekers of mental health
Craving simplicity
They traveled inward
Past themselves…
May all their little lights shine

[Read more…]

Aronofsky’s Noah is Gnostic?

Really interesting article on why Noah is not a gnostic film. It does a great job of briefing readers on the tenets of Kabbalah and Gnosticism too, some of which I never knew.

Even though this was a parenthetical, I found it really interesting and not surprising:

This is something to keep in mind, by the way, when people casually describe Aronofsky as an “atheist”. See also this interview in The Atlantic, where Aronofsky, asked about his spirituality, said: “I think I definitely believe. My biggest expression of what I believe is in The Fountain. And that kind of sums it up. And it’s hard for me to put it into words to describe. That’s why I made a movie about it. I tried to do it in sound and image and in dialogue and character. If people want to get a sense of what I’m thinking and doing, I still subscribe to the ideas in that movie.

Always leave room for hope. 😉


Noah: the film and the hot controversy

Noah: The controversy is expected, but the scale of the controversy surprises me

As implied in my last post, I am finally adding to the cacophonous hysteria about Noah.

I liked it. Let me tell you why.

Imagine, if you can, watching the whole world you’ve come to know literally wash away.

I felt well-enough informed after reading Phil Cooke’s piece on the film, knowing how solid he is on all the related issues, and because he had actually seen it. I trust him and his opinion on most things. So I had nothing to fear, and I wanted to be clued in on discussions.

[Read more…]


Sometimes, the real church is taking place out on the front steps

Question: Which side of the door is the church on?…

Humanarium: Creating a Space for Authentic Relationship

On a recent Monday, I was listening to Dr. John Coe talking about honesty being the meta-virtue which is the basis for all the spiritual disciplines.

Did you catch that?

The basis of all the spiritual disciplines, and the highest virtue of them all, is honesty.

[Read more…]

Franklin quote on knowledge

The Premier American Scholar

An investment in knowledge always pays the best interest.
–Benjamin Franklin


But just like any other investment, you have to use it and reinvest it to have growth. It’s possible to just sit on knowledge, not doing anything with it.

The challenge is knowing when and where to use it–that’s when mere knowledge becomes wisdom.

Yes drill sergeant

My twisted-side ego is like a drill sergeant but one that wants me to fail. It screams in my face when I screw up, fall down, question things.

Real drill sergeants, however, ultimately want you to succeed…or quit.

But wait, maybe that negative side of me is harassing me in order to help me succeed in the end. Could it be that there is a nobler purpose in that berating, negative psyche?

ArmyAmber / Pixabay

Bear with me now…

How could something from me want me to fail? Maybe this thing is EXACTLY like a drill sergeant. Maybe I should just answer “yes drill sergeant!”

You freakin idiot! Go faster! “Sir, yessir!”

Look what you did, Lewis! Stop it or you’ll ruin everything! “Sir, yessir!”


I think I heard Titus once say that anxiety is good because that’s how the rent gets paid.



Starbucks stock is screaming

It’s interesting to work in the shadow of a juggernaut that sells out on $450 gift cards faster than Dave Matthews concert tickets in Virginia.

The offering marked the second year the coffee chain has partnered with high-end daily deal site to sell the cards. With only 1,000 cards available, the deal was the more exclusive of the two.


How to make your coffee at home taste like Starbucks’

“Yeah, but it doesn’t taste the same as when you guys make it.”

Brewing a perfect cup--just a matter of setting up right

Cup-a cup-a cup-a cup-a cup!

I hear this often when I talk to people about buying whole bean coffee to brew at home or work. Starbucks doesn’t use beans that are any different than what they retail. The equipment they use is fast, precise, and (thus) expensive, but it doesn’t do anything magic to it either. So what is the difference?

It’s just a question of simple chemistry. This post will tell you how to get those results at home.

[Read more…]

Thanksgiving: Reason for the Season

I follow Twinfamy because he’s a clever writer who inspires me. He’s a father, husband, and a scholar. He gives me a lot of hope and reminders that it is attainable, and helps me to stop making excuses not to try.

And his post about Thanksgiving is a good reminder to take note of the people you’re with and be thankful for what you have.

Happy Thanksgiving everyone.


Extinction of whiteness?

This blogger asks the question, “Is the extinction of whiteness avoidable?”

Forgive me if I’m stating the obvious, but…of course it is. White people just need to stop opting to not have families. If they continue to choose to stay single in larger numbers, abort themselves in larger numbers, and prevent themselves from reproducing, OF COURSE they’ll fizzle out.

I don’t think this is a problem for the human race. There are plenty of other groups that still like having kids.

If, as Russell Peters said it, everyone ends up being beige in a few hundred more years, so be it. 😉

Black on white background

Sharp as a bowling ball