- Montreal, Quebec
- Washington County, Kentucky
- Nashville, Tennesee
Pretty good for a dog, huh? Especially a dog of humble beginnings from Brooklyn, New York.
I am *no* stranger to the excellent coffee at Dunkin Donuts. On the road, it's the place to go!
However, I'm not sure about the crowd at your Dunkin D., but the folks who tend to linger at mine are a wee bit further downby a couple of echelons. Working class? Nay. Nothing that looks like employment here. And I am and always have been the only person I've seen reading a book in a Dunkin Donuts shop. And all the cops in Doylestown are now hanging at the Starbucks. If only to keep the kids from marrauding (sp?).
I hope I didn't imply in my blog that the Episcopal Church is a place with Answers! It's all about the asking of Questions. I've never heard an answer. Not once. (The Laird be thankee.) My long held beef with the Episcopal Church is that it tends to be the preserve of literate, college educated white people from the upper tax brackets. This, in part, lead me to dabble in the Roman Church during my early twenties. I found something refreshing about sitting in the pews with... well... with thhe folks that hang out in your Dunkin Donuts. And good meat and potatoes sermons, concretizing the gorgeous formal unity of Thomistic theology (All those Answers!). No allusions to Auden's poetry here. None that go unattributed cuz the folks listening would feel that the attribution would insult their intelligence anyway. But, as it became abundantly clear that part and parcel of the moral theology was that I personally was ecluded from the Body of Christ, well... I don't stay long at parties where I'm not invited. And I've made my peace with the class issues of the Episcopal church: over-educated swells need a place where they can grow in their love of God and their brothers and sisters in Christ, too!
Preaching to a crowd of leathermen, huh? I always tote my Book of Common Prayer with me to Inferno. I'm pretty attached to Compline. Here's my fantasy: I would love--but I've never had the testicular fortitude required to make it happen--to organize saying Morning Prayer on Sunday morning. Or Evening Prayer on Saturday night. Chanting psalms with my brothers in leather... I suspect that there would be a few takers. But I totally get what you mean. I want to have my cake and eat it, too. I make sense of my S/M journey within the context of my Christian faith, and I'm sure that there are others out there who do as well, and I want us to all join together overtly in prayer and praise about it.
And thanks so much! Thoughtful responses to my writing are always welcome! Honestly, *any* response to my writing brings me joy.
Your leather brother in Christ,
We b elieve that much of the thinking about the self of educated Americans, thinking that has become almost hegemonic in our univ ersites and much of our middle class, is based on inadequate social science, impoverished philosophy, and vacuous theology. There are truths we do not see when we adopt the language of radical individualism. We find ourselves not independently of other people and institutions but through them. We never get to our selves on our own. We discover who we are face to face and side by side with others in work, love, and learning. All of our activity goes on in relationships, groups, associations and communities ordered by institutional structures and interpreted by them.
But the ultimate problem with spiritual freedom is that it never ends. As [the American philosopher Richard]Rorty points out, it widens endlessley, Freedom means always keeping your options open, so it means you never settle on truth, you never arrive, you can never rest. The accumulation of spiritual peak experiences can become like the greedy person's accumulation of money. The more you get, the more you hunger for more. The life of perpetual choice is a life of perpetual longing as you are prodded by the inextinguishable desire to try the next new thing. But maybe what the soul hungers for is ultimately not a variety of interesting and moving insights but a single universal truth. Dostoeyevsky has the Grand Inquisitor say, "For the secret of man's being is not only to live but to have something to live for. Without a stable conception of the object of life, man would not consent to go on living."
The chief worth of civilization is just that it makes the means of living more complex, because the more complex and intense intellectual efforts mean a fuller and richer life. They mean more life. Life is an end in itself, and the only question as to whether it is worth living is whether we have enough of it.