May the church be a community of solidarity, fraternity, and welcome, always living in an atmosphere of synodality…

Calligraphy By Jeanne Poland QuickSilverStudiospeace

First I was a scribe with a feather…now I write with a steel chisel…and send snail mail…

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On this day in 1452, the first section of the Gutenberg Bible was finished in Mainz, Germany, by the printer Johannes Gutenberg. Little is known of Gutenberg’s early history or his personal life except that he was born around the year 1400, the youngest son of a wealthy merchant, but from the time of the appearance of his beautiful Bibles he has left an indelible mark on human culture.
Ancient books had primarily been written on scrolls, though an innovation in the second century A.D. — that of the codex, a sheaf of pages bound at one edge — gave us the familiar book form we recognize today. Early codices were produced by hand by monks in scriptoriums, working with pen and ink, copying manuscripts one page at a time so that even a small book would take months to complete and a book the size of the Bible, rich with color and illuminations, would take years.
Gutenberg’s genius was to separate each element of the beautiful, calligraphic blackletter script commonly used by the scribes into its most basic components — lower case and capital letters, punctuation, and the connected ligatures that were standard in Medieval calligraphy — nearly 300 different shapes that were then each cast in quantity and assembled to form words, lines, and full pages of text.
He also invented a printing press to use his type, researching and refining his equipment and processes over the course of several years. In 1440, Gutenberg wrote and printed copies of his own mysteriously titled book, Kunst und Aventur [Art and Enterprise], releasing his printing ideas to the public. And by 1450, his movable-type printing press was certainly in operation.
It is unclear when Gutenberg conceived of his Bible project, though he was clearly in production by 1452. He probably produced about 180 copies — 145 that were printed on handmade paper imported from Italy and the remainder on more luxurious and expensive vellum. Once complete, the Bibles were sold as folded sheets, the owners responsible for having them bound and decorated, so that each surviving copy has its own unique features like illumination, dashes of color, marks of ownership, and notes and marginalia.
Only four dozen Gutenberg Bibles remain, and of these only 21 are complete, but what Gutenberg created went far beyond the reach of those volumes. By beginning the European printing revolution, he forever changed how knowledge was spread, democratized learning, and allowed for thoughts and ideas to be widely disseminated throughout the known world. In his time, Gutenberg’s contemporaries called this “the art of multiplying books,” and it was a major catalyst for the Renaissance, the Scientific Revolution, and even the Protestant Reformation. In 1997, Time magazine named Johannes Gutenberg “Man of the Millennium” and dubbed his movable type as the most important invention of a thousand years. His name is commemorated by Project Gutenberg, a group of volunteers working to digitize and archive cultural and literary works, while making them open and free to the public. His name was even placed in the skies as the planetoid Gutemberga.
Mark Twain wrote in 1900, in a congratulatory letter to mark the opening of the Gutenberg Museum in Mainz: “What the world is today, good and bad, it owes to Gutenberg. Everything can be traced to this source, but we are bound to bring him homage … for the bad that his colossal invention has brought about is overshadowed a thousand times by the good with which mankind has been favored.”


FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 30, 2022
“To listen, the first thing that is needed is silence, deep silence, inner silence, that which we find in prayer. Very often our lifestyles are “full of noise”… The prophecy that Jesus asks of us is indeed to go against this grain, to seek out silence, to detach ourselves from the world, from noise. This permits us to pay attention and, with artisanal patience, to identify the different sounds, to weigh them up and to distinguish them. In such a way, that initial clamour begins to take shape; what seemed dissonant will be understood and situated, it will have a name, it will have a face. No note will be too high or too low, and no sound will be strident to our ears if we find the harmony that only our silence can give.” 
Pope Francis


Hello everyone!
Me too, last day… I‘ve been fine-tuning a haiku for Cory‘s word “zip“ throughout September. It‘s so nice to be here with all of you.
Becca


hummingbird zips dips
hovers suspended, extant
probing today’s fare

Does stuff make my status?

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Every morning after breakfast, you look out the window across the street at the people who live there. The nice automobiles, immaculate landscapes, and seemingly annual trips that your wealthy neighbors take all make you envious.

If only you could have all these amazing material things, you’d be happy. Everything would be absolutely perfect, wouldn’t it? Or would it?
Is there really any point comparing yourself to other people to determine your social status or worth? What good do loads of ‘things’ do for you anyway? Do you really need to outdo the people around you?
Today we are using the Angels of Abundance Oracle Cards by Doreen Virtue and Radleigh Valentine to gain some insight into this question.
Won’t People Look Down on me if I Don’t Have the Latest Stuff?
You have been wishing your life away looking out of that window at your neighbors’ possessions. But, you have a life that is just as valid as theirs. Goods you own do not make you the person you are. Your value is in your deeds and the fact that you have so much love within you to share with those around you.

You don’t want to be paying eternally for some fancy vehicle just because it’s in fashion. No one will look down on you if you don’t have it.
And, in the rare event that someone does comment on it, at least your money is your own to spend on you and your loved ones on little treats and just living in general. You’re not tied into a loan to pay for goodness knows how much at an incredibly high interest rate!

How Can I Stay Happy and True To Myself?
This tension is exacerbated by the prevalence of social media. People post images on Instagram of their weekly coffee outings, exotic trips, and other ways they “reward themselves.” It causes us to question whether or not we are making the right choices in life.
It’s true that there is no issue with trying to maximize your happiness. The pursuit of happiness is a right you should grant yourself. Nevertheless, you cannot risk your financial health to compete with other folk’s shows of ‘wealth’.

So, rather than attempting to keep up with the neighbors, how can you live a life that is authentic to who you are? Block out these distractions from other people. Take them all with a pinch of salt. Rather than turning your thoughts and desires outward towards what other people are doing, focus these on yourself instead.
Your angels are directing you to ignore the very first distraction that appears in your mind regarding what you feel you lack. Distractions make it tough to give your top commitments the attention and care they need because you’re too busy constantly concentrating on them.
Therefore, it’s crucial for you to evaluate these diversions to figure out which ones you can go without. Let go of what is causing you to feel envious of those around you.

Focus on your priorities instead of on getting the latest things. See the beauty in every day so that you’re not tempted to covet what other people have. You see, you’ve become sidetracked by the ego’s attempts to derail you from your path.
To start bringing peace to the world, you must first create stability within yourself, for it is only then that you can truly help others. Aligning your behaviors with your values is the quickest route to inner calm. This involves acting in accordance with your stated values and principles.


So, take into account that one of your most essential duties is to look after yourself. Thankfully, if you consistently put in the time you need to shift your focus from other people, you will see results.
Every little bit helps, and even just an hour every day enjoying something that matters to you, spending quality time outdoors with your loved ones or even taking a class and developing your skills may provide a very remarkable outcome.


WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 28, 2022
“Mary, Queen of Peace, comfort the martyred Ukrainian people and obtain from the heads of Nations the strength of will immediately to find effective initiatives to bring the war to an end.” 
Pope Francis

criticism of a modern society…

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It’s the birthday of author Fay Weldon, born Franklin Birkinshaw in Worcestershire, England (1931). Weldon grew up in New Zealand until the age of 14, when, some years after her parents’ divorce, she moved with her mother and sister to live with her grandmother in England. She never saw her father again, and believed until she went to college that “the world was peopled by females.” She attended St. Andrews in Scotland, where she studied Economics and Psychology; her acceptance, she believes, was based on the fact that the school assumed, given her Christian name of Franklin, that she was male. After graduation she married, divorced, and worked as an advertising copywriter to support herself and her young son.
Her early life set her up, perhaps, to write books that are famous for their investigation — and criticism — of a modern society still under the sway of an antiquated patriarchal structure. Often referred to as a feminist icon, Weldon is revered for cultural commentary that is sharp, funny, and highly intelligent, meaning books like The Fat Woman’s Joke (her first), The Life and Loves of a She Devil (her best known), and Chalcot Crescent (her most recent) that successfully straddle the divide between mainstream and literary, receiving both critical and popular acclaim.
Weldon said: “I see myself as someone who drops tiny crumbs of nourishment, in the form of comment and conversation, into the black enormous maw of the world’s discontent. I will never fill it up or shut it up; but it seems my duty, not to mention my pleasure, to attempt to do so, however ineptly. See me as Sisyphus, but having a good time.”
Poetry Almanac Sept 22, 2022 

Clara: In the Post Office
by Linda Hasselstrom
I keep telling you, I’m not a feminist.


I grew up an only child on a ranch,


so I drove tractors, learned to ride.


When the truck wouldn’t start, I went to town


for parts. The man behind the counter


told me I couldn’t rebuild a carburetor.


I could: every carburetor on the place. That’s


necessity, not feminism.


I learned to do the books


after my husband left me and the debts


and the children. I shoveled snow and pitched hay


when the hired man didn’t come to work.


I learned how to pull a calf


when the vet was too busy. As I thought,


the cow did most of it herself; they’ve been


birthing alone for ten thousand years. Does


that make them feminists?


It’s not


that I don’t like men; I love them—when I can.


But I’ve stopped counting on them


to change my flats or open my doors.


That’s not feminism; that’s just good sense.

“Clara: In the Post Office” by Linda Hasselstrom from Roadkill.

© Spoon River Publishing, 1987. Reprinted with permission.
Writers Almanac Sept 23, 2022

“Writing is very hard work and knowing what you’re doing the whole time.” —Shelby Foote

Pack your curiosity and inspiration into a plan based on resources and conditions…

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The tarot card of the day is the Page of Wands.Your head is in the clouds dreaming up creative ideas, but the Page of Wands calls you to reign in and ground your ambitions to gain the most reward.A sturdy youth looks intently at sprouts emerging from a long staff clasped in his hands. The salamander symbols on his tunic represent fire and transformation.Within the barren land, he has found an element of life and growth that reflects his ability to unearth potential.You are similar to the youth, seeing opportunities others miss. You find inspiration in unlikely places and quickly transfer this energy to new projects. Your ideas are buoyant, carefree, and often untethered to the reality of circumstances.The youth does not rush into action at the first potential. He is instead stilling himself and weighing his next move against the conditions. While energized by what he sees, his ambitions remain like the staff, solidly grounded.Your path is open to potential and clear of blockages. But rather than rushing ahead, you are positioned to learn more.Imagine if you were to move your pent-up energies to create a stable foundation from which to launch your ambitions. In that case, it would allow you to effectively unite your ideas, resources, and objectives.The youthful energy that fuels you creates an atmosphere of joy, positivity, and passion for living. Your curiosity is high, which can lead you in various directions simultaneously.You are optimistic, energetic, and perhaps a little naive. Yet, you possess many of the gifts for success if you can wrangle these into a unified plan.Give Your Curiosity DirectionThe Page of Wands demonstrates your joy, inspiration, and willingness to try anything. Of course, you get excited by new projects, but this is to the detriment of unfinished tasks.You like to jump in and see where the journey takes you rather than investing in a secure plan. Therefore, you do not impose boundaries on your ambitions.These attributes of courage and curiosity are linked to excellent outcomes. However, the Page of Wands encourages you to level your head and balance your energies.Your creative restlessness is linked to your unlimited scope. Conversely, creativity often thrives within boundaries of restricted resources and enforced criteria.You allow a clear plan to emerge if you learn to transfer unresolved energy into being still and reflective. Pack your curiosity and inspiration into a plan based on resources and conditions.Then, make a strategy, test your ideas, and set a budget before racing into implementing random thoughts.You are on a pathway to greatness, with soaring ambitions and the motivation to achieve anything. Step into your aura of destiny by setting a secure base to build success.Discover Your Spiritual GiftsIn a spiritual context, you are about to transfer your attention inward and awaken your connection to your inner world.You are often viewed as a nonconformist or naturally independent, reflecting an innate trust in a higher power.You are innovative and playful, with a tendency to embrace new endeavors. The Page of Wands encourages you to become more grounded, which is also linked to a stronger connection to the spiritual realm where your ideas are born.The Page of Wands often appears when your spirit guides call you to discover your inner truths. While this may be a new experience for you, your open-mindedness and sense of wonder will be rewarded by seeking a deeper understanding of your desires.There are new levels of consciousness you can experience that fuel and heighten abilities of insightfulness, wisdom, and intuition. Seeking these gifts will profoundly enhance your life by revealing your inner purpose.You are gifted with many attributes that fuel great success but lack the stability to balance your wild ambitions. To practice harnessing your energy for new tasks, take time today to consider which of your senses are most stimulated in a learning environment.Match this sense with spiritual activity. For example, if you are predominately a visual learner, try a visually stimulating walking meditation. Alternatively, check out sound healing if you are auditory orientated or outdoor yoga to embrace a kinesthetic learning style.

MONDAY, SEPTEMBER 26, 2022
“For on the wood of the cross Christ removed the venom from the serpent of evil. Being a Christian, then, means living without venom: not biting one another, not complaining, blaming and backbiting, not disseminating evil, not polluting the earth with the sin and distrust that comes from the evil one. Brothers and sisters, we have been reborn from the pierced side of the crucified Jesus. May we be free of the poison of death, and pray that by God’s grace we can become ever more fully Christian: joyful witnesses of new life, love and peace.” 
Pope Francis

interconnected is faith…

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“Writers end up writing stories—or rather, stories’ shadows—and they’re grateful if they can, but it is not enough. Nothing the writer can do is ever enough” —Joy Williams

SUNDAY, SEPTEMBER 25, 2022

“There are altogether too many cases of hatred and division, too little dialogue and effort to understand others. In our globalized world, this is all the more dangerous and scandalous. Our human family cannot advance if simultaneously united and divided, interconnected and torn apart by massive inequality… Consequently, those who legitimately desire to voice their beliefs must be protected, always and everywhere. Yet how many people are even now persecuted and discriminated against on account of their faith!… We defend everyone’s right to religion, to hope, to beauty: to Heaven… In their absolute uniqueness, if they are in contact with the divine, every man and woman can radiate a special light in our world.” Pope Francis

I do not resist the forces of change…

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You have been through various challenges, and a tide of change is coming to sweep you into alignment. The tarot card of the day is the Eight of Wands.Eight sprouting swords rush through the sky, disrupting air currents and creating a mass of energy above a peaceful, fertile landscape.Meanwhile, the atmosphere is clear, and a river flows freely amid the serene setting. This scene reflects your success in handling past issues and encourages you to prepare as your dreams evolve into reality.Your path is etched into this higher plane, where you will experience an acceleration in everything you are working to achieve.Do you feel a sense of urgency building? Is there a settlement or opportunity imminent? Do you suddenly feel like things are moving more rapidly?Now is a phase when you may feel like time is compressed as you launch towards the completion of tasks you have previously labored over.A sense of anticipation grows in every moment as you draw energies to you like solar panels absorbing the sun.Embrace the feeling of freedom as past struggles dissipate and your goals sharpen into a fantastic reality.Life is getting hectic but in the best possible ways. So strap yourself in and watch your manifestations bounce into life.Do Not Resist the Forces of ChangeGet ready to submit to the energies propelling you and accept the influence of a higher power. Awareness and acceptance of this new phase will help you make the most of what comes.Electrical charges gather in response to your activated cells. Just like solar panels, this action causes more electricity to flow.This intensity means you may need to introduce practices to relieve any anxieties. But, first, release any negative knots of concern so you can effectively harness the buzz of energy surrounding you.Trust in the universe to provide what is to your benefit. Remember difficult times as preparing the field for manifestation.Reflect on things you failed to achieve, hurtful events, or experiences of rejection, and recognize why these events occurred.Past difficulties were a profound period of growth, allowing you to redirect from things that were not meant to be. Without this contrast, you cannot appreciate the wonders of the new pleasures about to arrive.The Eight of Wands brings dynamic and rapid changes in energy – the goals you have defined in times of struggle pivot into being. You are in the process of growth, alignment, and achieving the highest expression of your inner being.Allow this process, and invite your spirit guides to direct your vibration whenever you feel overwhelmed. They are evident and active all around you, so be assured you are in an atmosphere of protection, wisdom, and light.Focus Your IntentionsThe good news is approaching, but remain alert and focused. This new momentum is tied to established goals, so be aware of your thoughts and deepest desires.Now is a period to review and confidently declare your intentions. Say goodbye to confusion and indirection.Whatever your spirit has dreamed is ready to eventuate. Romance, travel, promotions, adventure, and rewards are all in your energy field.The Eight of Wands directs you to focus your intentions and actions. Capture the universal energies just as solar panels capture the sun.Be sure about what you want and gather your resources around achieving that singular goal. Avoid distractions or negativity.There is also the chance for a new project, grounded in your beliefs, to occupy your attention. Ensure your actions align with your greater goals and try to complete lingering tasks to clear your schedule for this new manifestation.Determine to be productive, as energy spent now will expand into significant and rapid progress.You will feel happy and energetic as results jump forth and solutions fall in place without effort. Allow yourself to be swept along into a space of all possibilities.If you have ever felt guided to develop psychic and healing abilities, this is an optimal time.Consider learning reiki or spiritual or compassionate healing. With these current energies present, the right choice and mentor will resonate with you and propel you into the right area of development.

FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 23, 2022“

The sweet song of creation invites us to practice an “ecological spirituality” attentive to God’s presence in the natural world, aware that everything was created through Christ and that “without Him not one thing came into being”.” (Jn 1:3)Pope Francis  

Every time I see an adult on a bike…

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H.G. Wells said, “Every time I see an adult on a bicycle,

I no longer despair for the future of the human race.”

WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 21, 2022
“A healthy haste drives us always upwards and towards others. Yet there is also an unhealthy haste, which can drive us to live superficially and to take everything lightly. Without commitment or concern, without investing ourselves in what we do. It is the haste of those who live, study, work and socialize without any real personal investment. This can happen in interpersonal relationships. In families, when we never stop to listen and spend time with others. In friendships, when we expect our friends to keep us entertained and fulfil our needs, but immediately look the other way if we see that they are troubled and need our time and help. Even among couples in love, few have the patience to really get to know and understand each other. We can have the same attitude in school, at work and in other areas of our daily lives. When things are done in haste, they tend not to be fruitful. They risk remaining barren and lifeless… “the plans of the diligent lead surely to abundance, but everyone who is hasty comes only to want”.”
Pope Francis

The larger common views ought to be bound together by fraternal affection…George Washington’s farewell address

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On this day in 1796, President George Washington’s farewell address was printed in the Daily American Advertiser as an open letter to American citizens. The most famous of all his “speeches,” it was never actually spoken; a week after its publication in this Philadelphia newspaper, it was reprinted in papers all over the country.The address was a collaborative effort that took Washington months to finalize, incorporating the notes that James Madison had prepared four years prior when Washington intended to retire after his first term, as well as numerous edits from Alexander Hamilton and a critique from John Jay. Madison, Hamilton, and Jay were accustomed to writing collectively; together they had published the Federalist Papers, 85 newspaper articles published throughout the 13 states to introduce and explain their proposal for a Constitution.Now only eight years old, the Constitution was in danger, Washington feared, of falling prey to the whims of popular sentiment. In 6,086 words, his address seeks to encourage the nation to respect and maintain the Constitution, warning that a party system — not yet the governmental standard operating procedure — would reduce the nation to infighting. He urged Americans to relinquish their personal or geographical interests for the good of the national interest, warning that “designing men” would try to distract them from their larger common views by highlighting their smaller, local differences. “You cannot shield yourselves too much against the jealousies and heartburnings which spring from these misrepresentations; they tend to render alien to each other those who ought to be bound together by fraternal affection,” he wrote.

To Autumn” was the last of these odes. Keats died from tuberculosis less than two years later, at age 25.
“To Autumn,” which the critic Harold Bloom called “as close to perfect as any shorter poem in the English Language,” begins:
Season of mists and mellow fruitfulness,

Close bosom-friend of the maturing sun;

Conspiring with him how to load and bless

With fruit the vines that round the thatch-eaves run;

To bend with apples the moss’d cottage-trees,

And fill all fruit with ripeness to the core


The Writer’s Almanac Sep 19,2016

“Writing is a combination of intangible creative fantasy and appallingly hard work.” —Anthony Powell

Portrait of Samuel Johnson

UNSPECIFIED – CIRCA 2002: Portrait of Samuel Johnson (Lichfield, 1709 – London, 1784), English poet. Oil on canvas by Joshua Reynolds (1723-1792), 1756-1757, 127.5 x101.6 cm. London, National Portrait Gallery (Photo by DeAgostini/Getty Images)

It’s the birthday of English essayist, poet, biographer, and lexicographer Samuel Johnson (1709) (books by this author), who compiled A Dictionary of the English Language (1755), a massive, 21-pound tome that remained the definitive dictionary for 150 years, until the completion of the first Oxford English Dictionary.Johnson was born to a bookseller and his wife in Lichfield, Staffordshire. Of his birth, he said, “I was born almost dead and could not cry for some time.” He was in such poor health as a baby, his aunt remarked that “she would not have picked such a poor creature up in the street.” Johnson suffered from scrofula, a form of tuberculosis. He was also slightly deaf, with impaired vision.Johnson attended Pembroke College, Oxford, for a year before he had to leave for lack of funds. He moved to London and taught for a time, though he had a series of tics and odd gestures that sometimes prevented him being hired. He was even passed over for a position as headmaster. The school’s director found him “a very haughty, ill-natured gent, and that he has such a way of distorting his face (which though he can’t help) the gents think it may affect some lads.” It’s now thought that Johnson suffered from Tourette’s syndrome, which had no diagnosis at the time.Johnson opened a private school, called Edial Hall School (1735), with his wife’s money, but he had only three students, and the school closed.He was writing, though, for The Gentlemen’s Magazine (1735), and imitation poems, which were well received, but made him no money. He even wrote a play, Irene, which had a successful run (1749), but was never performed anywhere, ever again, until 1999, making it the most unsuccessful play ever written by a major author.In 1746, he was approached by a band of London booksellers about the possibility of creating an authoritative dictionary of the English language. Johnson jumped at the opportunity, telling them he could do it in three years. It took him nine, even with assistants. When it was done, the Dictionary of the English Language had over 42,773 entries and was 20 inches wide when opened. It weighed almost 21 pounds and was one of the largest books every printed. Samuel Johnson pronounced it “Vasta mole superbus (Proud in its great bulk).”One of his innovations was to illustrate the meanings of the words with literary quotations, most commonly from Shakespeare. There were almost 115,000 quotations when the book was done. Johnson also introduced humor. For instance, the definition of “Lexicographer” is listed as “a writer of dictionaries; a harmless drudge that busies himself in tracing the original and detailing the significance of words.” “Oats” is defined as “a grain which in England is generally given to horses, but in Scotland supports the people.” Johnson was not fond of Scotland and its people.The dictionary was widely hailed as a triumph, though Johnson had his detractors, with one Thomas Babington Macaulay calling him “a wretched etymologist.” Johnson was also a bit lazy concerning pronunciation. “Cough” is listed simply as being pronounced “coff.”Samuel Johnson never became rich, though King George did eventually give him a meager yearly stipend. What we know about Samuel Johnson is mostly because of James Boswell, who befriended Johnson when he was 23 and Johnson was 54. Boswell kept copious diaries and his biography, Life of Samuel Johnson (1791), is considered the finest biography in all of literature. Boswell was so persistent with Johnson that Johnson once quipped, “One would think the man has been hired to spy on me.”Samuel Johnson died in 1784. His books include Life of Richard Savage (1744) and Lives of the Most Eminent English Poets (1779).

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