Quaker Universalist Conversations

“On Mediation” by Mary Klein

“From the Editor’s Desk,” Jan/Feb 2020 Western Friend

Love and truth spring forth in all times and all places – even in the hearts of chaos and corruption. We strive to follow the Good Way, but only in vain can we define it. Dust devils of DNA whirl down the generations, rampaging, making things new, making things fit, breaking eggs to make omelettes. To our surprise, we arrive in this life. Then we do our best to do the right thing, never really knowing all the good and all the damage we are causing.

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Linda Dittmar’s “A View from the Minaret” (excerpts)

Reflecting on willed blindness in modern Israel

Linda Dittmar, an Israeli-American native of Caesarea, describes a 2007 visit to her home town in northwest Israel, with her friend Deborah Bright, an American photographer who was in Israel to search out and record what little remains of depopulated Palestinian villages demolished during the war of 1948—which Palestinians call Al Nakbha (the Catastrophe).

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Myths are truths

The perspective of Rabbi Neil Gillman

Rabbi Neil Gillman used the term “myth” to mean an organizing principle into which we fit certain facts and experiences, a narrative structure that communicates a community’s master-narrative.

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Benjamin Lay, Quaker abolitionist

On reading Marcus Rediker’s The Fearless Benjamin Lay

I was asked by a Catholic friend if I knew Benjamin Lay, the Quaker abolitionist. I did not. She gave me an article in the September 2017 issue of the Smithsonian magazine, “The Cave Dwelling Vegan Who Took on Quaker Slavery and Won,” by Marcus Rediker.

I of course know of John Woolman, almost revered by many Friends including myself, but why had I never heard of Benjamin Lay? Indeed, Lay’s portrait, painted by William Williams in 1790, is in the National Portrait Gallery in Washington DC.

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Page 575 and the Quaker Bible

Reading The New Cambridge History of the Bible

The New Cambridge History of the Bible is a four-volume scholarly project on the history of the use and abuse of the Bible. Volume 3 of this project primarily covers the western Christian Church during the period of 1450 to 1750, from the end of the Middle Ages to the Enlightenment.

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