Cumber

 

Cumber: (v) to hinder or hamper

Pellets of energy.

Think about it.

I know some folks believe that human beings are good, and others insist that we are naturally evil.

This has not been my finding. I would be hard pressed to describe the human race as good, and equally distraught to characterize them as only devious.

Actually, every single day, each one of us is bestowed pellets of energy. Energy doesn’t come with character specifications. It is neither hellish nor celestial.

It’s just energy.

And because it’s energy, it can be useful, and it can also be squandered.

Every morning when I rise, I yearn for my pellets of energy. I’m careful not to make too many promises, just in case I turn into an asshole between breakfast and lunch.

But I am fully aware that my value to other folks lies in realizing that if I don’t use my pellets of energy well, I’m just hanging around cumbering the Earth.

We don’t use the word “cumber” anymore.

It’s an Old English term, often associated with Biblical quotes.

But it fascinates me that we struggle for longevity without demanding that it be accompanied with purpose.

There has to be something more than gardening.

We can’t expect to sustain value merely from arriving on time to our doctor appointments.

And for the younger crowd, simply passing a test does not qualify anyone for superb consideration.

I don’t want to cumber the Earth. I don’t want my family to be ashamed of themselves because they wistfully wonder when I’m finally going to croak.

I want myself—and hopefully everyone else—to be fully aware of why I still hang around and notice the by-products of my hanging.

I do not want to cumber your life.

I do not want to cumber the Earth, filling it with carbon dioxide instead of sucking some of it back out.

I do not want my friends to feel responsibility to me today because of what I did yesterday.

I do not want to cumber the ground, the Earth, my surroundings, my loved ones or the cosmos.

I would like to take my pellets of energy and turn them into goodness instead of mediocrity or darkness.

What shall we do with these pellets of energy?

Get ready—it’s coming around again tomorrow.

funny wisdom on words that begin with a C

Bogus

Bogus: (adj) not genuine or true; fake.

Dictionary B

Although I’m sure the word “bogus” has not been used by anybody since Bill and Ted’s Excellent Adventure finished playing at dollar theaters, I must say that the definition and the concept is rather important, and certainly would be enlightening for our times.

Somewhere along the line, or absent a line, we have begun to believe that real life has to be replaced by the exposure of reality.

So if a television show is done about a preacher and his family, we don’t focus on the good deeds, but rather, the conflicts that often arise in their character, which contradict their Biblical nature and expose their human foibles.

We are fascinated with failure.

Pointing at bad people does make us feel good. Therefore, symbolism is preferred to experience.

Whether it’s politics–where we have an Electoral College with a confounding number of votes to select our next leader; or the College Football Playoff, with a coalition of experts to muse over the manly efforts of the varying teams; or a church, where we replace the message of the Nazarene with bread and wine as a token of his life, it is bogus.

But like I said, since that word is outdated, we will just have to find another way to describe a season where illegitimacy is honored–because to revere the legitimate might leave us all convicted of our lack.

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Backbiting

Backbiting: (n) malicious talk about someone who is not present.Dictionary B

“Gnashing of teeth.”

It is one of those phrases from the Good Book, referring to people who get so angry that they would just like to bite somebody.

So to make sure that we don’t come across like wild wolves, we have come up with more civilized ways to gnash on people, without extracting blood.

But here’s the fact: nobody is willing to admit that they gossip.

So how can you tell if you have fallen into the nasty tendency to become an emotional vampire?

  1. If you’re discussing with another person and the person you’re discussing walks into the room and you tell your friend to “hush up” so you can get back to it later.
  2. If you have to preface what you say with, “I don’t mean this in a bad way…”
  3. If you finish 20 minutes of railing against someone and then decide to close it with prayer.
  4. If you make sure that you attack weaker people so that they have no power to strike back against you.
  5. If you use Biblical or psychological terminology to reinforce your theory of someone else’s perversion.
  6. If you make any kind of pact of silence in order to ensure that your victim is not aware of your true feelings.
  7. If you feel a little greasy and stinky when somebody preaches against gossip.

Gossip is the true sign of insecurity:

It’s projecting onto others our failures.

It is the absence of letting our true yes be yes and our no to resound as a no.

 

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Anima

dictionary with letter A

Anima: (adj) Jung’s term for the female part of a man’s personality; the part of a person that is directed inward and is in touch with the subconscious.

I grow bored with a culture that gyrates between religious conviction and the pursuit of science.

Recently when I suggested to a friend that God, Science and Nature were the same living Creator, he became vehement at the assertion that his deity of intellect could be permeated by any sort of religious terminology whatsoever.

But if you just look at it logically, whether from a Biblical perspective or a scientific one, both of them agree that men and women are not really that different.

We focus on subtleties and we tout the cultural conflicts that are created by our own miserable manifestations, but when you get right down to it and you’re looking across the room at a man and a woman, it isn’t exactly the typical vision of the Great Hunter carrying his spear with his woman trailing two steps behind, hauling the papoose.

Actually, we’re so much alike.

I remember the first time I went on the road with two women in a music group and we ate at a Mexican buffet and came back to lounge and watch television. One of the young ladies ripped off one of the longest, most intense farts I had ever heard in my life.

I was startled–and not just by the volume and change of odor in the atmosphere. The fact that it came from a female body was foreign to me, against all the training I had received about the delicacy of the female form.

Likewise, when I was in a locker room with a friend who had broken his toe during football practice, they took off his sock, and when he saw the bent digit pointing eastward instead of north, he started to cry, worrying about what his mom would say and whether he would be able to put on his shoe to go to the dance on Friday night. This was our rough and tumble fullback, who suddenly, right in front of my eyes, turned into Cinderella.

Yes, I feel that the more we try to be male or female instead of embracing our humanity, the more ridiculous we become. I think in future generations they will laugh at our insistence on roll-playing.

Do I have a woman living inside me? God, I sure hope so. There is so much I like about women–so even to have a few ounces of their poundage of personality would be terrific.

Do I believe there is manliness living inside the women I know?

Absolutely.

So I don’t know whether these attributes are really male and female, but rather, just human qualities that are earth-friendly.

Therefore, whatever Jung came up with is okay with me as long as it’s not portrayed as an aberration, but rather, a true discovery of how much we honor one another by possessing portions of one another.

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Ablaze

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dictionary with letter A

Ablaze: adj. 1. burning fiercely: his clothes were ablaze 2. brightly colored or lighted: New  England is ablaze with color. 3. made bright by strong emotion: His eyes were ablaze with anger.
“Let me stand next to your fire.”
That’s what Jimmi Hendrix sang in an attempt to seduce a woman.

But let me tell you–if you have ever stood next to a building ablaze, you won’t soon be requesting to return. Fire is one of those entities that cannot be captured on film, written into books or even viewed at a distance to determine its magnitude and intensity.

I’ve only been involved in one fire in my life. It was at a motel and I realized that if I moved in closer than a hundred feet, the combination of the burning air, smoke choking my lungs and the ferocity of the flames would drive me back, keeping me from the searing danger.

You can certainly understand why Biblical writers used the intimidation of “the fires of hell” to frighten people into good behavior. The next morning after this fire that I witnessed, even though I did stand way back from the peril, I still ended up with what appeared to be a sunburn from the heat. So I have great respect for ablaze.

And even those people who decide to be ablaze with personality can certainly burn you–or choke the life out of you.