Welcome to Ishmael’s Legacy
“Progress is impossible without change, and those who cannot change their minds cannot change anything.” – George Bernard Shaw Yesterday afternoon I sat on my back patio, the sun shining brightly and warmly on the Western horizon, a strong breeze challenging my ability to both read my book and hold my drink, and I pondered … Continue reading Most People Don’t Change
“(Prayer) does not change God, it changes me.” – C. S. Lewis One of the first real challenges to my Christian faith came when I started doing some critical thinking about prayer. In order to discuss it, however, we have to set some ground rules and definitions. For the point of this discussion, “God” refers … Continue reading Prayer and Meditation
I really, really love watching The Rise of Skywalker. I know, I know, a lot of people give me the stink eye when I say that, but hear me out. This morning my daughter and I were watching this, the ninth installment in the Skywalker saga (well, really 8th, but I’m about to fix that), … Continue reading One Quick Edit Fixes The Star Wars Sequels
“You try to improve and do better; it’s a journey, not just a destination.” – Hakeem Olajuwon It was an incredibly beautiful day. Sunny, 65, light breeze blowing … it was one of those days where if God reached down out of Heaven and invited you to come for a visit you would ask him … Continue reading The Importance of the Journey
Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders has long been one of my political heroes. I don’t always agree with his policy ideas, but he always tells it the way he sees it and he doesn’t kowtow to political interests when he speaks about what’s best for this country. In the 20 or so years I’ve been listening … Continue reading A Liberal Questions $15 Minimum Wage
This is not a book review, per se, however it is a response to a book I got for Christmas from my parents. Amy-Jill Levine’s The Misunderstood Jew (The Church and the Scandal of the Jewish Jesus) starts off on very familiar ground for me, as I have spent more than two decades reading scholarly … Continue reading Exciting News About Heaven (Really!)
“If we are not serious about facts and what’s true and what’s not, and particularly in an age of social media, where so many people are getting their information in sound bites and snippets off their phones, if we can’t discriminate between serious arguments and propaganda, then we have problems.” – Barack Obama Congress shall … Continue reading It’s Time to Talk About the Truth
“You need not attend every argument to which you’re invited.” – Anonymous It is pretty much your knee-jerk reaction, and was mine for years. When someone attacks you verbally, whether accusing you or upset with you for some reason, the natural response is to snap back at them. That’s also the absolute worst thing you … Continue reading The Strength in Silence
“Three things in human life are important. The first is to be kind. The second is to be kind. And the third is to be kind.” – Henry James It’s incredibly easy to be kind to people we like; in fact, it comes naturally. You greet friends with a smile, a warm hug, perhaps a … Continue reading Kindness Is A Super Power
It’s that time of year again; the time of year when people start making resolutions about who they want to be and make promises they will most likely break about drastic changes they will implement. Some makes these resolutions about weight loss, others about giving up one addiction or another, and of course the possibilities … Continue reading Work Hard As Self-Fulfillment
When I was growing up I really thought I had it rough. My parents divorced when I was two years old and then settled on opposite sides of the United States, so I spent holidays and vacations flying back and forth and missing whichever parent I wasn’t with. There were different rules, some easier to … Continue reading An Attitude of Gratitude
“You can destroy your now by worrying about tomorrow.” – Janis Joplin When I was a kid my paternal grandmother was one of my favorite people. She loved to play games, was obsessed with them, even, so time at her house meant time spent locked in mortal combat over Monopoly, Sorry!, Boggle, Upwords and pretty … Continue reading Overcoming Worry
“Anger, fear aggression… the Dark Side are they.” – Yoda This is part 2 of a series, so if you missed part one, link here! I have watched the original Star Wars trilogy many times over the years….probably more than most. I used to keep track of how many times I’d seen the original, but … Continue reading The Magic of Avoiding Anger
“There are only two days in the year that nothing can be done. One is called Yesterday and the other is called Tomorrow. Today is the right day to Love, Believe, Do and mostly Live.” ― Dalai Lama XIV The first time I encountered the idea of being focused on living in the present I was … Continue reading The Power of Living For Today
A very good friend of mine posted this story on Facebook this morning to demonstrate the “evils of socialism” in our society. It got me thinking, and I felt I had no choice but to have some fun with it. Here is the initial post, which included the picture of the above car: The best … Continue reading Another Fine Socialism Myth
“Good grief.” That was pretty much the universal response to the news that for the first time in 20 years ABC would not be airing the classic Peanuts cartoons we have all come to associate with the holiday season. It also means that for the first time in 65 years those specials will not be … Continue reading Is Physical Media Poised for a Big Comeback?
“God sent his Son into the world not to judge the world, but to save the world through him.” – John 3:17 NLT For Pop and Bushi No, I didn’t accidentally use the wrong scripture above; I feel like enough has been made of John 3:16 that it would be a waste of time to … Continue reading Meditation on John 3:17 (not 16)
Full disclosure, I am a cable cutter. In an age where commercial-free streaming video is as close as the nearest remote, I simply don’t see the need to subject myself to the manipulative and often offensive “you deserve” narrative of the ever-increasing number of commercials. This is especially true during election season, when big-spending corporations … Continue reading The Stupidity of Political Ads
It’s that time again….election time…. a time when people come out of the woodwork touting their pet issues to try and get you to vote for them or for their candidate based on just one issue. Perhaps the biggest of these hot button issues is the legality of abortions, with Republicans typically lining up to … Continue reading The Fallacy of the Hot Button Issue
When I got my Master’s in Literature, one task I was asked to perform was to write a poetry chapbook. The first thing I had to do was look up what a chapbook was, and then I had to look up what a bunch of poetry forms were. The assignment was to include 20 … Continue reading The Shapes of My Signing
The Gilbraith-Reed Career and Technology Center in Garland, Texas is really something to see. It’s a high school, but the moment you step on campus you could easily mistake it for a community college. The students are all either in class or sitting in common areas, reading, typing away on computers or talking quietly on … Continue reading Why Educators Hate the School Voucher Concept
First of all, let’s be clear about one thing. What you’re about to read is not a political post. I am not espousing one particular party when I point out the issues with Texas Senator John Cornyn, though I am strongly against what modern Republicans have chosen to represent. I am a fiscal conservative and … Continue reading Senators Like John Cornyn (TX) Must Go
Benjamin Franklin is known for many things, but something you may not know is that he was essentially the founder of the United States Postal Service. By virtue of the fact that he owned a print shop in Philadelphia, Franklin was first appointed to be a postmaster by the British Crown in 1737. Later, when … Continue reading Why the US Postal Service is Under Siege
Episode II A DIVISION IN THE FORCE Decades of relative peace and tranquility, presided over by the JEDI ORDER, have been interrupted by an outbreak of unrest across the galaxy. A new SITH Lord, Darth Sidious, has beengaining power, and is believed to be usinghis influence to start a civil war. The SENATE is split … Continue reading Star Wars Episode II – A Division in The Force
Pardon my French, but I think it’s time for everyone to chill the fuck out. Seriously. Over the last few months, J.K. Rowling of Harry Potter fame has been taking heaps of criticism for some perceived slight she may have accidentally implied on Twitter back in December. This is what she said: Dress however you … Continue reading The Demonization of J.K. Rowling
Conspiracy theories are a dime a dozen, and usually they aren’t even worth the dime. Trust me – I have a very good friend who messages me constantly with stories about aliens on the moon, the world being flat, Joe Biden planning to step down and name Hillary Clinton president after he wins in November … Continue reading Is Portland A Sign of Things to Come?
“America isn’t easy. America is advanced citizenship. You’ve got to want it, ‘cuz it’s gonna put up a fight.” – President Andrew Shepherd (The American President). I sit here starting this blog entry on the evening of July 4th, America’s birthday, having just watched Lin Manuel-Miranda’s brilliant musical “Hamilton” for the second time in as … Continue reading How Does America Go Forward?
The Lord said, “If as one people speaking the same language they have begun to do this, then nothing they plan to do will be impossible for them. 7 Come, let us go down and confuse their language so they will not understand each other.” – Genesis 11:6-7 I was having lunch with my godfather, a semi-retired Presbyterian minister, recently, and the … Continue reading The Modern-Day Tower of Babel
The first movie I ever saw in theaters was Disney’s Song of the South, a heartwarming tale of Brer Rabbit and how he outsmarts Brer Fox and Brer Bear in their never-ending quest to eat him for dinner. I don’t recall being aware of any racism in the film, though admittedly I was like three … Continue reading America in Extreme Overreaction Mode
When white Europeans first made their way across the continent they named North America, one of the first things they did was establish an authority to dispense justice. It was a hazardous job, to be sure, and many of those brave souls who stepped into the space between law and lawlessness lived very short lives. … Continue reading Return of the Wild, Wild West?
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