October 19, 2018, Prescott-
Today is the birthday of a wise and difficult woman. The wisdom of this person has been on my computer screen, much of the day, as I took a day off from work, to let my recuperating left knee catch a break. It isn’t her formidable and searing poetry and prose that I am reading. Instead, I am reading the verses of kindred spirits- women who could heal the planet, were they to find league with one another.
People like SheLion and Fiery, whose verses burn through all pretense, are who built the human race, who stoked the fires, domesticated wild crops and chronicled it all, first in pictures and then in song. People like my mother, still offering a ruling hand, at Ninety years of age, are who have raised solid men, for an ever-changing and hopefully advancing civilization. People who don’t flinch, in the face of adversity or in the face of false kindness, are who are bringing truth to the world.
I watched an episode of “Law and Order: SVU”, on a hunch that a rare daytime viewing would tell me something I needed to know. The topic was a “female empowerment” group, which turned out to be little more than a man manipulating lonely women into giving him money and control over their lives.
As I watched that program, I could not help but think of the above-mentioned woman’s complaint, after visiting a large faith-based center, in the mountains northeast of here. There didn’t appear to be any coterie of women, attached to either of the men running the center, but the fees being charged for week-long seminars did seem to be exorbitant.
I am in agreement with her about this. Those who need spiritual training are just as likely to be in a low income bracket as to be wealthy. The argument that “we can’t stay open, if we lower our fees” is, to me, a hollow one. A spiritual retreat, especially an ascetic one, is not a spa or a golf resort. My own attendance at faith-based events is contingent upon their accessibility to everyone. I will be looking into this fee system further.
There are other points, which it likely will fall to me to raise, having loving, but hard, conversations with friends and acquaintances in this area, with the goal of seeking justice. Some will involve the well-being of troubled young adults and others will pertain to the ethics of certain local business owners. Again, the goal is justice, not a blame game or random accusations.
Two times two should always equal four- and no amount of padding or sleight of hand should be allowed to change that basic fact. Honesty in business is everything.