is "Canada Day" The sky is overcast this morning but
it looks to be a great day to celebrate the anniversary of the creation
of my country. This morning I was doing a bit of reflecting on
what we humans do when we create different kinds of communities. We
are doing two divergent things; one the one hand we unite and combine
different people and recognize positive connections between us, and on
the other hand we use that same process to tell others that they do not
aspect of that process of making a community is stronger seems to give
it the character of being
a good thing or a bad thing, and tends to direct our decisions in a good
or bad way. I know that my use of the terms "good" and "bad" are
value judgements and are based on my own moral sense, but that is OK
as that is the only value base that I have to work from.
If my sense of being a Canadian
focused on what I share in common with the others of this nation and
creates within me a sense of common purpose and common concern and common
good, then it is a creative and positive force within me to encourage
me to support the needs of all who dwell within this land and concern
for the land itself.
my sense of being Canadian focused on being "not" like others on this planet, on "not" sharing
common concerns and common responsibilities, then my being Canadian is
a negative force within me and within this single small world we all
my spirit matures and opens to the wisdom of the Creator and of the
Earth I will come to value both
the smaller communities to which I belong and which support me as "my
People", and I will also understand and appreciate the membership
in the global community and the common humanity we all share. When
that awareness is deep within me, I will also be open to understanding
that the Spirit that is my life and which gives me my being and my life,
is from the same single source within Wakan Tanka / Creator / Yahweh
. That will enable me to say with deep understanding; "We
are all related" / "All my relatives" / "Mitakuye
Then my prayer will have real power
because it is in line with the total prayer / communication of all creation
with its source in Creator.
I have been busy with so many
tasks that I have neglected others. The
grass beside my home has yet to be cut and as I walked beside it yesterday
I noted that it was so tall that it reached my ears! I have never
seen the grass grow to such a length here. Granted, it is in a
space near the house what was well watered and well fertilized from the
winter fertilizing efforts of my dog King, yet it is still remarkable
to see how life has flourished with the gift of rain that we had over
the past month. During the first two weeks of June my rain gauge
here showed a gift of 9.25 inches / 23.5 cm!
I have finally finished the
rubbing out process on the three chess tables I made. I still have to carve the knights on the walnut and birch
chess pieces. I have turned some nice pieces and will take photos
soon and post them to this site's Gallery pages. I will provide
a link here when I do that.
Since my return from my Pipe
Prayer I have had the great experience of being asked to pray with
some friends using the power of the Pipe
to direct our prayers to Creator. With the weather being so nice
doing Pipe Prayer out of doors is very appropriate. I have finished
(at long last) reading James Walker's Lakota Belief and Ritual and have
begun reading Lakota Myth. Reading the transcriptions of the understandings
of Lakota Medicine Men of many years ago is like reaching back in time
and listening to these sacred understandings myself. It is the
same sense that I sometimes have when reading Old and New Testament selections. When
we hear the testimony of those who are our spiritual ancestors we experience
the spiritual continuity of a people. More and more I understand
that I have one foot walking the Judeo-Christian tradition and the other
foot now walking the Dakota-Lakota Red Path. While that is one
way of speaking of the spiritual journey, it is more accurate to say
that I have both feet walking both paths. Since I have only two
feet, that would mean that the two journeys / paths are really one and
the same. That is truly what I am coming to understand.
Recently an Anglican / Episcopal
priest and I were discussing things at a supper we shared at a mutual
friend's home. In response to
a question / comment from him, I pointed out that in our Christian tradition
we have no trouble praying with Old Testament / Hebrew prayers and songs,
and move quite smoothly from that to New Testament-based prayer and song. We
see no problem because we know that it is the same God that is being
prayed to in all cases. I pointed out that the understanding of
that God as revealed in some of the Old Testament writings is really
quite different from the God as revealed by Jesus. We have no trouble
with that and understand that all knowledge we humans have is incomplete
and the understandings of a people and their relationship with Creator
does evolve and grow. In the same manner I can experience
spiritual understandings and teachings from the Lakota - Dakota traditions
and find within it spiritual truth and a call to live my life by the
Red Path without there being any conflict with the Path my Baptism called
me to follow.
If anyone reading this has
thoughts on this I would invite you to share your reflections with
06-10-2004 For those who
have been following this journal and have an interest, I have completed
my Pipe Fast / Vision Quest / Hanblecheyapi ceremony and returned home
yesterday afternoon, a half day sooner than anticipated as my Prayer
Supporter had to leave to attend to a dying uncle.
It has been anticipated for many
months and its experience as a part of my spiritual journey far exceeded
any expectation that I may have had at the outset.
I was truly blessed on all levels
and I want to thank from the depths of my being the many people who have
supported me and prayed for me and wished me well at this time.
will post a few images today and more later. Click on this
link to go to the section of this site to which I am posting materials.
I will share what
I saw or experienced on the www is something I will still ponder and
have largely recovered my strength by this morning and will prepare
for the formal conclusion of the Hanblecheyapi
with the feast at Friendly Forest this evening. Again, thank you
to my prayer supporters. The "Principle of Generosity' will
apply; what you have sent out will return to you fourfold! May
it be so!
Sacred Hoop / Medicine Wheel I illustrated below was not to be long in
my keeping. It was appreciated and has been gifted to a Spiritual
Elder who is helping me in my prayer journey. I have started on
another, having learned how to do things in a better manner.
I get good enough at making these I would consider making them for
sale. They are attractive, and
if I leave loops to make attachments it can be customized for the person
wanting the item. The colours might have to be customized though,
and even the colour sequence as these are different for different groups
and even for different individuals within a group. What I assumed
was a rather simple thing really is not. Now I understand why I
was having difficulty finding any single colour description and colour
sequence in my Web searches. There is no one answer to the query.
have found that nylon braided cord takes a hot dye rather well and
the smooth fibres give a shine and
richness to the finished / dyed cord that cotton does not have. The
other issue I have with cotton is that it is not as strong and is more
likely to stretch or sag after it has been woven into the wheel design.
took the wasna / pemmican out of the freezer yesterday and when I tried
to form it into a ball it crumbled. I
was disgusted. Then I used the microwave to warm it and then wrapped
it in plastic wrap in a ball shape and put that in the fridge to
cool. That produced a nice solid ball of wasna. It really
smells good and if it were not for the chunks of chokecherry pits in
the mixture I might even enjoy eating it. As it is, it will
be food for Eagle.
will bring my bison skull and bones to an Inipi ceremony this evening
and they will be "blessed" / "consecrated" for
use in my prayer times. I purchased a print of Robert Bateman's
painting; "Chief", and I have hung it above the place
where I rest the bison skull between prayer times. It is a great
and powerful painting that communicates to me the emotional impact of
this great beast and its gift of life for the people.
morning began with a dense fog over the forest and the water. The
sun came over a bank of low clouds and made for the most incredible view.
The frogs and birds were calling and the smells of the newly opened leaves
and the newly-watered earth perfumed the air. It was very easy
to pray. I will take the sensory memory with me for those times
when it is harder to "feel" like praying.
time for my Pipe Fast / Vision Quest nears and I am preparing food for the feast that will follow
as I will not have the time on the day itself. Invited friends
will bring other things. I am also preparing some of the food my
two prayer supporters will need while I am in prayer and hunger and thirst
mode in the forest. ( I am sure that I will taste that food many
times in my memory as I sit there.) I am also quite sure that one
of the outcomes of this experience will be that I will never take food
and water for granted again, knowing just how significant and life-supporting
these daily gifts are for me.
had bent a few wooden hoops for drums for people in the past. Recently I needed to bend some more
wood and had a few steamed pieces in reserve to compensate for wood failure
during a bend attempt. I had a few of these pieces remaining and
I bent them around some of the drum hoop forms that I had and so got
some birch hoops for my own use. Over the past few days I have
been making one into a Sacred Hoop / Medicine Wheel. I had to purchase
white cord and re-learn how to dye fibre with a hot dye. I am sure
any subsequent efforts will look better and be easier to accomplish as
I learned a lot this time. Never the less I am very pleased with
the outcome. The Hoop will remind me of what I pray about ( and
is part of my name; Candesna Cun Wakan Oksina)
weekend brought some much needed rain. This morning the rain gauge
showed 21mm at Friendly Forest. That is not much, but for a critically
dry forest it is a significant blessing.
of the ground cover which had not emerged because of cold and dry conditions
grew 7 inches in two days! The
greening of the forest under story is critical to reduce fire hazards
in the early part of the season. Perhaps the rain will be enough
for the beginning of a recovery.
have finished making the wood for two eagle staffs for two friends. The top crook was to be a
3 inch radius curve. In attempting to make these we learned some things; fresh
green wood does not hold its bend and any natural sapling with a branch
/ twig emerging anywhere on the bend will be enough of a flaw to cause
wood failure. I tried some oak I had and had no luck. I am
sure it had been kiln died (Also a vorbotten consideration). Then
I tried some of my air dried birch, but did not have pieces that had
straight enough grain to handle that tight a curvature. Learning
as I went along, I opted for lamination, cutting .25 inch wide
strips and steaming them in my steam tube. Five of these, with
a steel strap, made their way around the bending form with only minor
flaws on some of the internal strips. When these had cooled and
dried in place, I took them apart, applied glue, and re clamped them
on the bending form till dry.
I had just made the top 20 inches of the staffs, I then took a straight,
un steamed portion shaped
to fit the staggered end of the top piece, and glued them together with
polyurethane glue. When that had cured I ran the edges through
my thickness planer and sliced the piece on the table saw to make my
two nicely shaped staff pieces. After rounding the edges on the
router table and a bit of sanding, I have two strong and attractive pieces
to give to my friends. These will be decorated and have 12 eagle
feathers attached. One is intended to be used at the "One
Voice One Nation" Dakota Lakota Nakota Summit to be convened July
3 at Sioux Valley. This will be at the conclusion of a Sacred Sundance
have been working at adding the multiple coats of varnish to three
chess tables I have made, and I am
turning additional chess sets in walnut and birch. At the end of
that I have to once again become a carver and carve 12 knights. That
is a much more laborious task and I do not look forward to it. The
finishing of all those pieces is not a lot of fun either. I
fully understand why wood turners choose to NOT make wooden chess sets. You
never recover the materials and time invested in making them. ...
But what a beautiful and satisfying finished product.
These are images of a set I did
the other year.
The rest of the week will be busy
making final preparations for the Pipe Fast / Vision Quest and supporting
a friend who is having medical problems.
Sunday morning. I rose at 04:50 and built a small fire outside
and prayed as the sun rose. Two special people I have come to
know are very ill and in great need of healing. My heart feels sorrow
for their suffering and the anxiety of their loved ones. Today
I will visit one of them in the hospital.
Parish Confirmation Retreat went well yesterday. I was up early
and asked Creator to be with us as the young people reflected and prayed. I
then started to prepare the food that had not been finished the
day earlier. I baked pancakes and heated sausages and set table
and the other stuff. At 09:00 they arrived. We started
outdoors around the grill. I started the fire that would burn
all day, and we said our welcome prayers and called on blessings on
the food we would soon eat. Then we had a good breakfast. The
young people had good appetites but there was still food remaining.
of the morning common time was a reflection on the baptism they had
experienced as infants. We went through the ceremony and the
signs of their adoption. I then asked them to begin a personal
letter to the Holy Spirit ... their reply to the many "letters
/ Journal Directives" the
Holy spirit had sent them throughout the past year. They scattered
through Friendly Forest and that gave me time to take out and warm
up the noon meal.
self-serve wraps and other food worked well and they had good appetites
again. Each said their own blessing prayer on the food and on
us as we all gathered in the kitchen area.
afternoon saw us reflect and go through the ceremony of Confirmation
that would be celebrated that evening with the Bishop of Prince Albert. We
reflected on the signs of God's presence ... on fire and wind,
and why these were chosen by Creator to represent Creator's presence
to the people. I was impressed by how much they understood and
how much they remembered from our sunday sessions throughout the year. sometimes
I had the sense that they were not really focused on what was being
talked about from week to week, but they knew and they understood. They
especially had an understanding of what it means to be "holy",
and what makes people or other things "holy / wakan". They
also seemed very comfortable in talking to the Holy Spirit / praying. Those
had been my primary goals and it was great to see that this had happened
during their journey with
their Creator. After personal time (for many on the
trails at Friendly Forest), they gathered with their completed
letters to the Holy Spirit and we sent those letters as prayer in smoke
as they were placed on the fire.
started to arrive as we did final logistics checks for the evening
service and a review of the program and the day.
arrived at the church early and it is fortunate that I did. Our
parish priest was looking everywhere for the church copy of the Sacramentary. It
had disappeared, and we suspected that the Deacon had borrowed it and
failed to return it. I have a copy of my own and I went back
home to bring it to the church. I got back there will still enough
time to help the young people and their families get ready for
the service. Bishop Blaise Morand did a fine job of involving
the young people and the whole congregation in understanding the importance
of what we celebrated and letting the Candidates know just how important
this was and how important they were.
were on a steep hillside, maybe like a mountain with different levels
or steps, and you were having a difficult time to climb higher. You
said; 'why is it so hard?' There were seven eagles that came
and were flying around you and one of them landed on your shoulder. That
eagle said to you; ' You chose this way. You did not have to
choose it, but now you must go on and complete what you have begun.' You
had a hard time of it. Bear came to you and you were very afraid. But
bear lay down near you to let you know he was there to help you and
you stopped being afraid. And wolf came also and bear and wolf
went with you.
of the eagles took you by the shoulders and lifted you up and carried
you forward. Eagle carried you and you went much further than
you had ever expected to go when you started."
was the description of a dream of a Dene healer as he told it to me
on May 17. He asked me what I thought it might mean, and what
I had been doing over the weekend, as he had the dream late Sunday
evening or early in the morning hours of Monday.
answered that I had been at the New Green Alliance Annual Convention
in Regina, and that some things had been good and others that had disturbed
me and had interfered with my sleep that night. I said I would
think about his dream further.
am not sure. It was not my dream, but that of the Dene healer. Whatever
it meant, I could appreciate the images and symbols of the dream as
he described it, and whether the dream came from Creator or from his
own imagination, I appreciated the positive character it had.
it foreshadowed the experience of the Vision Quest ceremony I plan
to do in a few weeks. If so, it would suggest that the suffering
will be greater than I anticipated. That ceremony was not forced
on me, but one that I freely chose, and I am expected to complete what
I have begun. Eagle is one of my helpers, and the fact that a
full sacred number of seven eagles had come to help me is a profound
sign of great support from my Creator. I have not seen bear as
a spirit helper, nor wolf, but the Dene healer explained that they
represent medicine for me, and that they proceeded with me meant that
I would have their help. I do not know if the medicine was for
my needs or if they represent medicines that I need to learn about
to use to help others.
do not know what this means for me, but it is a nice affirmation that
I am doing a good thing for me by proceeding with the quest. I
had the sense that the dream was like the apocalyptic literature of
the bible; images on many levels that are intended to support and comfort
a people who are suffering and afraid.
am not prone to remembering dreams that I know I must have when I sleep. Even
when I think that I want to remember a dream that I have when I awake,
after a few minutes of being awake, I soon forget what I had wanted
to remember. My Freudian psychology background also tends to
prevent me from giving any spiritual significance to what I dream. Perhaps
that is why I have been given a dream from someone else ... Creator
is trying to tell me something and I have lost my capacity to hear
it and need to hear it from another ? Perhaps, perhaps not. I
do not know.
I drove out to Tobin Lake to check out a proposed site for the Vision
Quest. As we arrived an eagle came to greet us, and immediately
I and my prayer companion knew that this is the site Creator has planned
for me. The majesty of the location is great. Though any
time is a good time for prayer and any location is a good location
for prayer, there are special places that will support that kind of
began the day at 05:20 and was joined by a neighbour for early morning
Pipe Prayer. Then I headed off to pick up two companions to go with
me to the location at Tobin Lake. For those unfamiliar, Tobin
Lake is a dammed portion of the Saskatchewan River in Northern Saskatchewan,
north east of Nipawin.
here for images that I took while out at the site.
morning a brilliant rising sun sheds it light over a nearly completely
frozen pond at Friendly Forest. Mother's Day (yesterday) was
very cold and the night temperatures dropped again.
was told to get new clothing for the vision quest later this
spring ... that the Spirits were making a new connection and
should find me with new clothes. The symbolism is something that
I understand. It is the same sign that Christian baptism employs;
a new garment of white is placed on the newly reborn Christian as a
sign of that new life in Christ. Although I do not have money
for new clothing, I will see what sort of bargains I can find. Wakan
Tanka would not expect me to squander gifts given on expensive clothing
when simple things will carry the same import.
last week I made a visit to the home / farm of some friends from whom
I had previously obtained some bison meat and who had supplied the
raw bison hide that I still hope will be tanned before the end of this
month. I made my purchase and then was supplied with a huge amount
of free bison soup bones. They make a very delicious broth
that is the base of many soups.
sons of the family had been taking bones and the skulls of slaughtered
bison and cleaning them with the help of Turkey Vultures (yes they
live up here) and ants and the bleaching effects of the sun. I
was able to obtain a beautiful bison skull, two vertebrae from the
shoulder hump and a rib.
have come to understand that the spirit of Bison remains with
the skull and these bones represent all of the great gifts of Creator
what we receive through our mother the earth. For plains peoples
that meant food, shelter and even fuel at times. The bison stood firmly
on the earth, received its total sustenance from the growing vegetation
given by the earth, and became the source for life giving and
life sustaining gifts for the people. When I place the skull
before me in prayer I clearly have before me the understanding
that it is from the gift of brother bison that I have nourishment for
my body, a robe to keep me warm and a call and connection to Creator. I
understand that both Eagle and Bison are my spirit helpers. Bison
calls to mind all that I receive and for which I need to give thanks,
and Eagle is there to carry those prayers of thanks to Creator. During
Vision Quest I will be using the skull as the pipe rack for the Sacred
Pipe. Again, the symbolism is profound; the skull, with
the sockets stuffed with holy sage, another gift from Creator given
for prayer and healing, represents the abundance of Creator's love
for the people. The Sacred Pipe is a most holy gift given
to the people as a channel of universal prayer. As it rests on
the skull before me it reminds me of the relationship we have to Wakan
Tanka, a relationship given and made known by Wakan Tanka. If
that does not call forth a prayer response I cannot imagine a stronger
and more clear call.
finally got my fire system operational. I had connected all of
the hoses and sprinklers and got the motor oil changed, fresh fuel,
etc and was going to give it a test run on Friday afternoon. Nothing! The
motor would not even turn over but was seized solid. I went
into a near panic as I envisioned a rusted cylinder or some other dire
problem. Nothing I did seemed to help so I made a call to a Honda
dealer in Prince Albert. I could bring it in this week and they
would try to get at it. "Did it have a clutch? Sometimes
a clutch problem could prevent the motor from turning over..." No,
it did not have a clutch. But that question triggered a thought
and I went back out and took off the impeller pump. When I tried
to turn over the motor it went smoothly and then started with equal
ease and just purred as a good Honda engine should. What a relief! But
then what about the pump? It looked good. Perhaps something
stuck inside the pump? I took it into the shop and tried to investigate. I
got part of it disassembled and then needed a special puller that had
not been supplied with the system when I got it.
that evening, with advice from a friend, I tried flushing it with hot
water and soap in the kitchen sink. A few small leaves flushed
out and a small snail shell. I started taking it apart again
and found small bits of mineral deposit that crushed under my
fingers into a grit material. I reached in with a brush and continued
the hot water and soap treatment. What did I have to lose at
that point? Then suddenly the pump impeller turned as smooth
as silk! A heartfelt "thank you" was my
only response. On Saturday I tested the system and it worked
very well. And so I am one day older and a bit wiser and even
more appreciative for wisdom of friends and of Wakan Tanka.
to get back to work and make some more wood stuff. I have a very
busy week facing me.
have still been waking up before sunrise, but that time is getting
earlier and earlier. This morning it is a chilly - 5 degrees,
and I lit the fire in the grill so I could sit by it for a while during
morning prayer. I appreciate that grill:
obtained it from Lee Valley Tools. I have really come to value
the items they feature. I have found the prices to be fairly
high, but the quality also to be consistently high and that I get value
for my money. Their service has also been great. (Free plug for
a deserving company)
am reading more about Lakota belief and rituals, and though the source
books are dry and academic, I find that what I am reading is most interesting
and is helping me to better appreciate the depth of spiritual understanding
of the Lakota tradition as it is expressed in these sources. I
suspect that it is much like my original christian traditions;
that there is a great depth and rich insight into Creator's connections
to all things but that many who profess to know about the connections
know only a small portion of the collected wisdom of the people, that
those who know more are older and dying off, and that the young have
little time or interest in learning from those who are old and have
something to teach. And most troubling of all is the situation
where even those who understand the connections frequently do not live
lives that reflect this. When understanding and belief
do not change the lives of the believers, they are not believable to
those who have a right to come to understandings from their example. I
guess it has ever been so, and we must be most grateful to Creator
for having the patience to keep on teaching anew to each generation
and to each individual.
very holy man I had the privilege to know for some years, Msgr. Edmund
Ulinski, died on April 18. There was a memorial service for him
in Prince Albert on April 26. A little less than a year ago he
was sharing a few weeks in my home, and we had some very good discussions
about our God and Creator, and about how we do and don't follow the
spiritual directives we come to understand from our connections to
the Divine. Although he was afflicted by advancing memory loss,
his mind was still very clear with regard to ideas and the big
pictures. He just would forget whether he had taken his insulin
or his pills a few minutes ago.
he was last here at Friendly Forest I shared a smudge prayer with him,
and he thanked me for helping him to understand that way of praying. This
was from a man of deep prayer and deep faith and a huge love
of God and of his fellow human beings. When I said good-bye to
him last October as he was going back to Poland, we both knew that
it was the last time we would see each other and be able to give each
other a hug as we said good-bye. We said blessing prayers over
each other, and those two final connections are what I will remember.
other evening during Pipe Prayer, I called on his spirit to come back
to join with me in the bowl of the pipe and so join our prayers
to Wakan Tanka, and I am sure that he not only came, but has been sharing
some additional time with me ... that being so even though he is no
longer in time.
photo of Edmund with a beloved parishioner. I took the photo
at one of the final services he had at his Parish in Birch Hills. He
served his people till he was 85 years old!
week is nearly over! There were all those things that I was going
to have completed by this time that are still on my to-do list.
have posted a few images on the Recent
Work page. Looking at the page makes me realize that a lot
of those pages on this site need to be reworked and made current.
sun just came out of the clouds for a bit. It is 06:45, and it
is great to see the day coming earlier. I will need a new photo
for the Home Page to correspond to this season.
the past two weeks (except yesterday and today, I have been rising
about an hour or so before sunrise and going outside despite the cold
(sometimes -14 degrees Celsius), and praying with a smudge and meditating
until after sunrise. For
a while the sun and moon both were at opposite ends of the horizon. It
is great to see the power of Creator through those two sources of light
... the one direct, and the other reflected. When one thinks
about it, the direct light of the sun has more energy and warmth and
creative power. It truly is the gift of Creator to sustain
all of our lives. But that does not lessen the importance of
the reflecting moon. Without the moon on many nights, the sky
would only have stars to light up the darkness. The moon is a
reflection of the sun, and knowing that, we can believe in the sun
during the night even though it is not shining directly on our side
of the planet at that time. The moon confirms our
faith that the sun is there and will shine again more directly on us. I
think there is a metaphor here for me; The sun is the true source
of the life that sustains me and all living beings on this planet,
but the lesser lights which reflect the sun are important too and sustain
me during the hours of darkness. We humans are like the moon
... or we are at least challenged to be like the moon. We are
not the source of life but our role is to reflect that life to the
rest of the world and so bring hope and needed direction to whose who
walk in the night. The stars are so far away that their light is
not enough. We need a close reflective source of life , and we
are called to be that for each other.
we are to be the moon for our world, we need to remember that the only
true light we have to share is from the source of light, and is not
of our own making. In fact, the moon does not understand that
it reflects light. It only receives light and the reflection
is automatic. Our planet earth does the same though our perspective
does not allow us to see that effect. If we stand in the presence
of our Creator / God / Wakan Tanka, and allow that light to do its
thing, we will be a source of light in the darkness of others even
without being aware of it ourselves. That is probably the best
way in any case. If we are too aware of how we are a light source,
we are likely to become proud, vain and so turn in on ourselves and
end our capacity to reflect what we have been given.
the relative small size of the moon compared to the sun, the amount
of light able to be redirected to the earth is small, and cloud cover
can block it to a very large degree. I think the clouds are what
shields us from seeing Creator in others around us. We have been
given clear skies at night that allow us to see the moon and its light,
so when there is cloud cover we need to remember that and keep our
faith in the goodness of others alive in our hearts, and know profoundly
that the goodness we experience in others is only a relatively weak
reflection of the great goodness we receive from Creator ... a goodness
so great that we cannot even look at its true might and power without
hurting ourselves. The period of Lent and the Holy Week liturgies
of my Christian faith have reminded me of how great the love of the
Creator, how bright the power of the sun is, and that if we let things
be the way they are supposed to be, we can be a reflective moon to
each other and the rest of the world. In fact, that is the only
way we can be truly what we are.
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