Old, New, and Equal: Rest In Power, Notorious RBG

With the death of Ruth Bader Ginsberg (RBG) this weekend — and on the Jewish High Holy Day of Rosh Hashanah — it seems appropriate to tie this post to this “Trifecta of Thought”: an Old Testament Bible reading as nod to Ginsberg’s faith, my own humble, Christian belief, and a few comments about RBG’s passing and legacy.

This approach might have some folks dropping off this blog, or at the least dismissing the stream of thought out of hand…well, if yes, so be it. This moment demands attention and insight; especially in this time of challenge and sacrifice and loss, we must…we MUST, share out thoughts. These are the thoughts that pretty easily rushed to the fore thinking about all this.

From Leviticus 23:23-32, the Biblical verse that decree the Jewish holiday, mentioned, it’s written in part, “…you shall observe a day of complete rest, a holy convocation commemorated with trumpet blasts.”

As RBG entered into eternal rest, we remember the trumpet she blasted in our society for decades to further the Rule of Law, and to insure that legal protections were given to all people, and in particular to women. Maybe it’s fitting that she exited this world on this day, the dawn of a new year on the Jewish Calendar.

From her early professional days as a professor in law school — incidentally, named the first woman given a tenured position at Columbia Law School; and after being the only woman in her law school class at Harvard — she responded to the circumstances, to the moment.

To those who considered the affirmative action a bad thing — that very precedent that helped her progress to more equal professional footing — she would later write “a bit delightedly, ‘that at last, the days of ‘negative action’ are over.'” Indeed, for the whole of her career she spoke intelligently, pointedly, and ever with the belief that well-considered opinions needed to be shared. I read in more than one account this weekend a central tenet that Ginsberg held even in legal dissent on matters before the Supreme Court, where she served for well more than 20 years. The belief was that an opinion, even in dissent, would further the dialogue on the topic well into the future (and long after she was dead and gone).

And so, Ginsberg’s belief that equality was, IS, for all people in society, and especially women,

this thinking also seems to ring true to me in relation to Christian thought. After all, Jesus taught that all people were, ARE, equal before God. Simple, obvious, Truth.

And considering in particular the role that women played in the Jesus story, the place women held in the progression of his life and death, it seems clear that women are indeed not just equal, but more appropriately thought leaders, people of action and support and DOING in society. And they should be not only listened to, but examples to be followed.

Amen AMEN.

Rest In Peace, Ruth Bader Ginsberg. Rest in the Power you gave so many. And we know, you will continue to give that power to so many. That is one of the lasting gifts you’ve left us.

Truth & Equality. Rest In Power.

Amen AMEN.

Bonus Monday! Lyrics Post: “Outside” Aaron Lewis

Not typical to have a lyrics post for Monday on this blog. But given the busy weekend and forefront these words took in my head well…I thought I should share.

I saw Staind twice in their prime, a long while back. Wasn’t really into them, but my buddy wanted to see them, and I love live music, and if he called a rally, I’d be in if I could…so I was twice for Staind…accidental awesome, I’d say.

And I’d say it was more awesome to think back to seeing them…and then, seeing Aaron Lewis solo years later.

Whether back then, or more recently, Alt Rock or Quasi-Country, he’s a great singer / songwriter, at least in my book. So here’s one that goes way back, and bridges the gap…

And this one rang true all weekend for me,

So now, it’s for you.

OUTSIDE

“And you, you bring me to my knees, oh yea…

All this time, I could beg you please, oh yea,

All the times, that I felt insecure, oh yea,

And I leave, my burden at the door,

I’m on the outside, I’m looking in,

I can see through you, see your true colors,

cause inside you’re ugly, ugly like me,

I can see through you, see to the real you,

All this time, that I felt like this won’t end, was for you,

And I taste, what I could never have, it’s from you,

all those times, that I tried, my intention, full of pride,

and I waste, more time than anyone,

I’m on the outside, I’m looking in,

I can see through you, see your true colors

cause inside you’re ugly, you’re ugly like me,

I can see to the real you, see to the real you,

All the times, that I’ve cried, all this wasted, it’s all inside,

And I feel, all this pain, stuffed it down, it’s back again,

And I lie, here in bed, all alone, I can’t mend,

and I feel, that tomorrow will be ok,

I’m on the outside, I’m looking in,

I can see through you, see your true colors

cause inside you’re ugly, you’re ugly like me,

I can see to the real you, see to the real you.”

Here’s the explanation: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sg3pFoqSDtM

And here’s the original: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kc3Za3jfvJg

Hello, September

We interrupt the normally scheduled stream of consciousness for a little learning opportunity.

This month begun, September. It used to be the seventh month of a ten-month year on the Roman calendar. The root word actually means “seven”. Back then the year began with March. And then 2,400 years ago, it got bumped forward to 9th, when the Romans decided to begin counting the winter months, too.

Whatever the history, so begins this new month, the sixth month of the COVID period, the pandemic of our lifetime.

And yet even on the midst of this upside down and dangerous time, I look for the silver. Lining, that is.

There’s much to learn this month, some progress to be made, joy to be had. Even as things unravel, and the political season heats up, as our American society struggles and people are dying on the streets, protests sometimes coming unhinged, still, still, STILL, we’ll find our way.

And so seventh or ninth, September: Make it good.

Hmm, that did end up to be a stream of consciousness. Common theme here. Ah well, more GOOD.

It’s Complex

SCU Complex. LNU Complex. CZU Complex. Ah…what?

Not new vitamin supplements; rather, each a name that’s been given to one of the three wild fires currently burning in the San Francisco Bay Area.

In Santa Clara County (south bay). In Sonoma (and neighboring) County (north bay). In Santa Cruz County (further south bay).

Hill communities. Suburban communities on the fringe.

Already Pandemic Life. Already Distance Learning for our children. Already Work-From-Home for many; or working under additional constraints “on-site.” And of course, the Essential Workers grinding it out in even more extreme ways often.

The physical toll. The mental toll. The emotional toll. Those last two are different. The mental is adjusting your practices, routines, expertise to cope and hopefully thrive in the new set-ups. The emotional is the ups and downs along the way.

Hopefully we’re getting to more ups. Hopefully the downs aren’t as deep.

It’s complex.

Mindset: COVID

Like living with cancer. LIVING WITH CANCER.

Acceptance. It sometimes does not go away. Sometimes we have to live with it.

Like this pandemic. Living with COVID. All the new realities.

Like cancer: accept; evaluate; adjust; go forward.

GO FORWARD. This life is meant to be lived; this life is meant to be experienced; live them; create them; soak them up.

Moonlight

Moonlight, bright light, midway in the sky. Bright light begins the journey east to west, near full, light the way.

Six year old says it shines because of the sun, reflecting, her sister told her so. Bright light in the night sky, light the backyard campsite, keep us company throughout the night.

Keep us company throughout the night, show us the path home through the darkness, faint light on the flat stones, the way home.

Where is home? Under the moonlight, with my family, every night.

The Only Thing To Do…

The only thing to do is keep going.

It’s a new week, keep going. It’s a new day, keep going.

Your relationships are a little funky; maybe a lot funky. Keep going.

You’ve made the same errors more times than you’d like, maybe more thank you can count, keep going.

It’s hard, keep going.

You’re frustrated, keep going.

It doesn’t seem to be getting easier. It will. Keep going.

KEEP GOING.

Photo from Instagram, Alex Howes, US Road Cycling Champion 2019

Zzzzz

Slumber, sweet slumber, wash over me.

Darkness and gentle breeze from the fan, comfort me.

Let my cells, every cell of me rest, recharge, reset.

Prayers whispered to Heaven, sooth my trembling soul.

Take me quickly, and deeply into your gentle embrace, wash away my worries, the fatigue, the uncertainty.

Let me be certain tomorrow. Let me be certain tomorrow.

Lyrics Post: “Presto”

This song is one of my favorites from what I’d call the “Third Wave” of RUSH’s music…at least it feels that way to me.

And PRESTO!, more magic, song, lyric, GOOD.

“If I could wave my magic wand
I’d make everything all right

I’m not one to believe in magic
But I sometimes have a second sight
I’m not one with a sense of proportion
When my heart still changes overnight

I had a dream of a winter garden
A midnight rendezvous
Silver, blue and frozen silence
What a fool I was for you

I had a dream of the open water
I was swimming away out to sea
So deep I could never touch bottom
What a fool I used to be

If I could wave my magic wand
I’d set everybody free

I’m not one to believe in magic
Though my memory has a second sight
I’m not one to go pointing my finger
When I radiate more heat than light

Don’t ask me
I’m just improvising
My illusion of careless flight
Can’t you see
My temperature’s rising
I radiate more heat than light

Don’t ask me
I’m just sympathizing
My illusions a harmless flight
Can’t you see
My temperature’s rising
I radiate more heat than light”

Writer(s): Geddy Lee, Neil Peart, Alex Lifeson

Summer Solstice, Downhill

From here on out in the year, the days get shorter. It’s downhill to year-end, good momentum now.

Let this fact be a spark for you, for me, that we will see, make the most of each hour, each day.

Listen to the birds sing a little more. Worry a little less.

Let gravity do its thing, pulling you along, give in to the good around you.

Sit in the yard, on the curb, a little more with your friend, your kids, think about productivity a little less.

Don’t let the ruckus, the chaos, all those things you can’t control, overwhelm.

Roll down the hill head over tea kettle, laughing and feeling you insides spin. It’s ok.

Let it all fall aside, let your breathing slow more often, enjoy more often, just be, a little more often.