Gulf Shores

Gulf Shores
Photographer Patricia Gulick

Sunday, April 19, 2015

4/19/15 RMB Sunday Reading

4/19/15 RMB Sunday Reading

Dear Rita Mae Brown,

Today is a Sunday, a day of rest, reflection, planning and dawdling, mostly dawdling. I just looked up the next Rita Mae Brown book in line for me to read, chronologically speaking. It will be Riding Shotgun. The description says it contains Virginia, a fox hunt, a woman and time travel…interesting. I am looking forward to it. Murder She Meowed is nearing a conclusion as the mystery unfolds.

RMB books ride with me in my car, friends at the ready to keep me company in stolen moments and during planned retreats. Whether I am waiting in line at the bank or taking a lunch break, one of your books is always nearby.

Other books intermingle, such as The Four-Fold Way by Angeles Arrien, PH. D., recommended to me by Teddy Tapscott. From Arrien’s research, she elaborates on the four archetypes that virtually all shamanic traditions draw on to live in harmony and balance: the Warrior; the Healer; the Visionary; the Teacher.

She addresses the Warrior first and starts by detailing the importance of showing up and being present, good communication, responsibility and discipline, then states: “The most important aspects of the Warrior is the ability to extend honor and respect.” I like this book. I’m learning a depth, appreciation and ways of strengthening valuable aspects of myself.

Another recent read, is Billy Crystal’s Still Foolin’ ‘Em: Where I’ve Been, Where I’m Going, and Where the Hell Are My Keys? As a college kid, he was refused service in a diner because his Star of David necklace was showing, revealing him Jewish. Years later, when Mohamad Ali invited him to play golf at a country club, Billy informed him that he could not join him, due to the country club’s rules. After learning of their policy, Ali refused to play there too.

Billy mentioned, but didn’t lament these events. They struck me. Perhaps that he didn’t harp on them, made them all the more impactful. How easily he got up and walked out of that diner, how casually he declined an invitation to golf at a restricted club. Some evils insidiously damage society quietly.

While reviewing The Four-Fold Way with my nephew trio, our insightful eleven year old asked, “What if you don’t know if the person is a good person or a bad person?” Acknowledging his awareness, we discussed those in history that gathered followers and led them to their demise.

In words, spoken, written, and shared, there are answers. Words reveal who we are. And here is an interesting point, a multitude of people will read Billy’s book, as the country club and diner, dim in obscurity, he shines on.    

Enjoying books,

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