An ongoing collection of quotes that make me think and/or laugh:
Sometimes the light’s all shining on me.
Other times I can barely see.
Lately it occurs to me
What a long, strange trip it’s been.
The Grateful Dead, “Truckin'”
“[W]hen I marched in Selma, I felt my legs were praying.”
Rabbi Abraham Joshua Heschel
What you risk telling your story:
You will bore them.
Your voice will break, your ink
spill and stain your coat.
No one will understand, their eyes
You will park yourself forever
on the outside, your differentness once
and for all revealed, dangerous.
The names you give to yourself
will become epithets.
Your happiness will be called
Your sadness will justify their pity.
Your fear will magnify their fears.
Everything you say will prove something about
their god, or their economic system.
Your feelings, that change day
to day, kaleidoscopic,
will freeze in place,
brand you forever,
justify anything they decide to do
Those with power can afford
to tell their story
Those without power
risk everything to tell their story
will hear your story and decide to fight,
to live and refuse compromise.
Someone else will tell
her own story,
Laura Hershey, www.laurahershey.com
The path of the righteous is level; you make level the way of the righteous.
Did not a body have to wonder how intelligently designed we can be when none of us has so much as a wheel-like option.
Gish Jen, World and Town.
Sometimes I sing and dance around the house in my underwear. Doesn’t make me Madonna.
Joan Cusack in Working Girl
I wish getting seriously pissed off counted as cardio exercise.
Amy Adams (not the actress, the Mistress of All Evil)
You own the copyright on your life.
Hilton Als, “Color Vision,” The New Yorker, Nov. 8, 2010
“Now it is such a bizarrely improbable coincidence that anything so mindboggingly useful could have evolved purely by chance that some thinkers have chosen to see it as the final and clinching proof of the non-existence of God.
The argument goes something like this:
`I refuse to prove that I exist,’ says God, `for proof denies faith, and without faith I am nothing.’
`But,’ says Man, `The Babel fish is a dead giveaway, isn’t it? It could not have evolved by chance. It proves you exist, and so therefore, by your own arguments, you don’t. QED.’
`Oh dear,’ says God, `I hadn’t thought of that,’ and promptly vanished in a puff of logic.
`Oh, that was easy,’ says Man, and for an encore goes on to prove that black is white and gets himself killed on the next zebra crossing.
Douglas Adams, The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy
We have formed a truth by the consultation and concurrence of our five senses; but perhaps we needed the agreement of eight or ten senses, and their contribution, to perceive it certainly and in its essence.
Michel de Montaigne, The Complete Works of Montaigne: Essays, Travel Journals, Letters, translated by Donald Frame, quoted in Bakewell, Sarah, How to Live: Or A Life of Montaigne in One Question and Twenty Attempts at an Answer (Kindle Locations 2299-2301). Other Press. Kindle Edition.
Whenever two or more of you are gathered in His name, there is love.
Paul Stookey, The Wedding Song.
The basic idea that underpins any religious or philosophical thoughts I might have:
Found on Facebook, via I Fucking Love Science, which cites Beware of Images. This is similar to the Total Perspective Vortex, which is also a key reference point in my religious and philosophical thinking.
When you are put into the Vortex you are given just one momentary glimpse of the entire unimaginable infinity of creation, and somewhere in it a tiny little mark, a microscopic dot on a microscopic dot, which says, “You are here.”
Douglas Adams, The Restaurant at the End of the Universe.
Yes, as through this world I’ve wandered
I’ve seen lots of funny men;
Some will rob you with a six-gun,
And some with a fountain pen.
Woody Guthrie, Pretty Boy Floyd
I used to be disgusted
now I try to be amused.
Elvis Costello, (The Angels Wanna Wear My) Red Shoes
- God created us in the image of God – the Imago Dei – all colors, all genders, all sexualities, and disabled and not. God made us just as we are. Gen 1:27, Ex. 4:22
- The Imago Dei does not require cure – like Jesus with the blind man, celebrate our disabled bodies, minds, and beings, even if we make an extra bit (or a lot) of noise during worship services. John 9:1-3
- We are not one-dimensional people. We come from every nation, from all tribes and peoples and languages. We are black and brown, gay and straight, all genders (or none). Accept us, honor us, and listen to our truths. Rev, 7:9
- Do not curse the Deaf, instead hire an interpreter for worship, church schools, seminaries, choir practice, and council meetings. Better yet, start learning sign language to communicate with all God’s people. Lev. 19:14
- Do not put a stumbling block in front of the blind – make your website accessible, have large print bulletins, provide accessible electronic materials, and advocate for accessible public transportation in your community. Lev. 19:14
- Welcome disabled people to be in your midst. Not only welcome us in our all diversity to worship, but let us be the teachers and leaders. Hire disabled worship leaders, teachers, choir directors, pianists, and custodians. Include disabled congregants in leading service embracing diverse communication when doing so. John 9:2-9
- Heal your mind and attitude about disability. Learn from disabled people. We don’t have special needs, we have human needs. Disability is not a dirty word. It is an art, a celebration, an identity, a belonging. We are part of the whole body. Embrace that within the church. 1 Cor. 12:12-27
- Make level paths for your feet and remove architectural barriers that hinder our inclusion. Make every entrance accessible, and every part of the church accessible to all, ensure the pulpit, nave, alter or chancel, choir lofts, and organ are accessible to all. Have accessible restrooms, kitchens, classrooms and offices. Heb 12:13
- When you have a feast, invite us all. Make the whole church accessible to all. be scent free, sensory friendly, accommodate food allergies, and addictions. Luke 14:12-14
- Whoever receives one such child in my name receives me. Welcome disabled children. Modify church school curriculum to make it accessible, ensure youth group vans have lifts or ramps, provide paras for Sunday school students, and attendants for mission trips. Ensure disabled youth are never left excluded in the name of convenience or tradition. Matt. 18:4-5
- Make a joyful noise, and praise with dancing. Celebrate the noises of excitement and laughter – even during prayer. Praise flapping and stimming – part of the dance of disability. Ps. 100 Ps. 150
- There is always time crying and movement. There is always time for standing to relieve pain, and cries of frustration, boredom and trauma. There is always time for extra restroom breaks, and spaces for diaper changes. Ecc. 3:4
- We are often some of the poorest of the poor. Ensure housing projects are accessible. Modify food pantry policies to accommodate us. Fight for justice to ensure we have housing, food, and clean water in every town and every community. Join us in our fight for the right to work and contribute. Matt. 25:35
- Fight injustice in your community. We often first feel the effects of unjust governmental policies. Fight for healthcare, for services that allow us to live in the community, and against laws that weaken civil rights protections. Prov. 21:15
- Disability is a mighty catalyst for change in the world. Follow and join the disability community as we lead, in our activist lives as we fight for justice for all. 2 Cor 12:9
Carrie Ann Lucas
October 31, 2017
Maintaining the racial hierarchy require[s] living by and repeating agreed-upon fictions.
Annette Gordon-Reed, “The Color Line,” New York Review of Books, August 19, 2021 (square brackets mine).