Sunday, December 22, 2013

A Christmas Thought

   "The stockings were hung by the chimney with care..."

I often do a little meditating at this time of year, trying to keep my head on straight about Christmas. Today, gathering courage, I posted the following on Facebook…
by Charlie Leck

All you need to know…

“One of the scribes came near… and asked him, ‘Which commandment is the first of all?’ And Jesus answered, ‘The first is Hear O Israel, the Lord our God, the Lord is one, you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind, and with all your strength. The second is this: You shall love your neighbor as yourself. There is no other commandment greater than these.” [Mark 12:28-31]

This is all you need to know about Christmas. It’s all you need to know about Christianity. Jesus counseled love of God and love of our neighbor (our fellow human beings). Don’t complicate it more than that.

At the same time
I must remind myself that this is my own rule, my own guess about what Jesus was trying to have us understand. Kurt Vonnegut, one of my favorite writers, brings me back to earth when he reminds me: “No one really knows God’s ways.” This comes from “Cat’s Cradle,” where Vonnegut also writes: “She was a fool, and so am I, and so is anyone who thinks he sees what God is doing.”

In one of Vonnegut’s most marvelous pieces of writing, in God Bless You, Mr. Rosewater, Elliot Rosewater says at the baptism of a neighbor’s twins: “There is only one rule that I know of, babies – God damn it, you’ve got to be kind.”


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