Merry Multiculturalism

It’s that time of the year again. There are “tiny tots with their eyes all aglow, folks dressed up like Eskimos,” and messages in meeting betraying the mixed feelings Quakers have about Christmas. Two weeks ago several messages focused on consumerism, the role a material gift can play in expressing love, and the fact that [...]

2019-01-29T17:55:49+00:00December 10th, 2009|Spirituality|

Identity Theft

Marshall Massey (author of the Earth Witness blog) posted on Facebook this morning a reference to Matthew 18: 23-35, a passage about forgiveness in the face of being owed money. Interesting timing since I am trying to sort out my feelings about an unsettling experience yesterday. I had an appointment with my podiatrist, whose office building gives a [...]

2019-01-29T17:55:54+00:00May 15th, 2009|Spirituality|


It’s been so long since I’ve blogged, it’s hard to know where to start. I could write about my spiritual journey with the snow days—one more lesson in accepting the things I cannot change—or the great time I had in New York a few weeks ago to watch my friend Stephanie Smallwood get a prestigious [...]

2019-01-29T17:55:54+00:00March 4th, 2009|Nonviolent Direct Action, Spirituality|

Fit for Freedom

When I was in my twenties, looking for a spiritual home, one of the things that attracted me to the Religious Society of Friends was its history of peace and social justice work. Quakers advocated the abolition of slavery, worked on the Underground Railroad, and supported women’s right to vote. Coming from secular activists circles, [...]

2015-03-12T14:04:44+00:00February 14th, 2009|Racism, Spirituality, Writing|


As someone who writes about spirituality, I often find myself telling a story that involves someone else, either because they did or said something illustrative or because my own experience was shaped by them. There are times when I choose not to tell stories that would be funny or interesting because I think to do [...]

2019-01-29T17:55:57+00:00June 13th, 2008|Spirituality, Writing|

Light and Dark

Most often on this blog, I say what I think, and sometimes people post comments. But this week I am hoping to start an actual conversation, with differences of opinion and everything. Here are my queries: When are religious metaphors using light and dark appropriate? When are they racist? Should Quakers be talking about this? [...]

2019-01-29T17:56:13+00:00March 15th, 2007|Racism, Spirituality|

Needing Clearness

I’m going to be totally self-indulgent here and go on about my own dilemmas for a bit. I’m at a crossroads with my writing, and I need to figure out which path to take. In such situations, Quakers often form what’s called a “clearness committee,” a small group of good listeners who sit and listen [...]

2019-01-29T17:56:16+00:00March 16th, 2006|Racism, Spirituality, Writing|