Showing posts from June, 2017

My Path to the Spiritual Practice of Fatherhood

Maybe the most pivotal moment in my life, the point in time that had the clearest before and after reality to it for me, came when I was in Seoul, South Korea. It was this time of year in 2005, in fact. I was a couple months into a 6 month long language fellowship studying Korean at Yonsei University. A professor of mine at Columbia University helped me obtain the paid fellowship. The plan was for me to bulk up on my Korean language skills in preparation for my upcoming applications to PhD study programs in Asian Religions with a focus on Korea. Doing research in primary languages is rather important for PhD work. But things were not going well. Despite a semester of Korean at Columbia and informal studies for more than a year, I simply wasn’t getting a feel for the language. And reading Korean, what I needed to be best at, proved most difficult. I could never get the hang of the subject object verb sentence structure. Instead of I am studying Korean language and it is hard. It is i

The Moral Response to the Refugee Crisis

Leviticus 19:33-34 If a stranger lives with you in your land, do not do wrong to him. You should act toward the stranger who lives among you as you would toward one born among you. Love him as you love yourself. For you were strangers in the land of Egypt. I am the Lord your God. You’ve all seen the deeply, deeply tragic photo of the 4 year-old Syrian boy who drowned trying to flee that war-torn country with his family. His tiny, vulnerable frame on the sandy shore lifeless, waves ebbing and flowing – it is heartbreaking, soul-breaking. A child refugee in a family of refugees fleeing a madman and a mad war, a victim of humankind’s destructiveness. This image is an iconic reminder that, like some of our Universalist brothers and sisters teach, hell is here on earth. Especially in places like Syria. When I saw that photo, my breath was taken away for a few moments and then tears joined breaths' return. As I thought about all of it, and as I think about it now just a few weeks fr