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Good Morning Nanty Glo!
               Friday, June 28 2002 

Pity party

The whole point of this week of excursions on the byways of "rejection" is to conclude that like conceit and other hybrids of pride it is at its root another form of self-indulgence, self-pity. All of these behaviors may seem most of the time as stemming from feelings of inferiority, but in fact they more likely come from an ingrained will to power or superiority, the same thing that's at the heart of any superhero/supervillain saga, the all-too-human will to rule, take over, manipulate.

The seeming irony is that feelings of being rejected are most likely to be inflamed by the manipulations or perceived manipulations of others around us; the person who fails to return a smile, the driver who cuts in the lane as though we don't exist, the email sender who seems to think there's nothing more than a machine on the receiving end.... Having said that, however is not to have vanquished the enemy pride or conquered the frailty; there's more work to repentance than mere confession. Still, confession is a necessary and significant step in the right direction. I write, and I hope those who read do so to understand and in understanding make a first step toward pulling weeds.

The fathers* of the church teach that contrary to modern psychology, depression is a choice, and at that, a sinful choice. Free will implies freedom to love rather than hate, turn the other cheek when we've been slighted or "rejected," to speak well of those who think and speak ill of us, an so on. That's not to say I haven't spent years on end feeling depressed, nor to boast that feeling rejected will never again motivate me to withhold goodwill and a good word to my rejecting neighbors. It's an attempt to say, I hope to do better.

*"The church fathers" does not refer to the priesthood in general, but as those spiritual persons who may be called "Christian prophets," a relatively small collection of saints who are considered teachers of the whole church through their gifts of wisdom and utterance, such as Sts. Climacus, Chrysostom, John of Damascus, Gregory the Great, and others.

—Webmaster Jon Kennedy

You may be a redneck if... (2002 edition, series)

You think a quarter horse is that ride in front of K-Mart. Your neighbors think you're a detective because a cop always brings you home.
A tornado hits your neighborhood and does $100,000 worth of improvement.
You've used a toilet brush as a back scratcher.

— Sent by Mike Harrison

Thought for today

We do not stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing.

—Anonymous, sent by Judy Martin

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