Conclave

Conclave: (n) a private meeting.

Yet another word a writer should never use, because everyone reading his or her work would know a thesaurus had been consulted.

Too bad.

Because right now our world is plagued with a convergence of unrighteous conclaves.

Since we’re convinced that we can’t get along, we are shrinking our circle of affection down to those who agree with us on every point, and then meeting funny wisdom on words that begin with a C
together to be critical of all opponents to our ideas.

Such a conclave of young boys caused me to believe, until I was in the sixth grade, that girls actually did have “cooties.”

Such a conclave made seemingly rational monarchs and religious leaders decide to go on Crusades to slay the infidel in the Holy Land.

Such conclaves deemed it necessary to lynch those with black skin who dared to be “uppity.”

A conclave was responsible for the Third Reich.

Conclaves brought about the assassination of a great leader–whoever he or she may be.

A dynamic human being once stated that “wherever two or three are gathered in my name, I am there in the midst.”

But unfortunately, often such conclaves of a gathering of a pair or trio do not always bring about the sharing of Good News.

 


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Celebrate

Celebrate: (v) to acknowledge a significant or happy day or event with a social gathering

The reason needs to be larger than the plan.

I have often attended celebrations where the actual organization of the event overshadowed the purpose for us gathering.

I sometimes feel that way when I go to church. We forget that the real significance of clumping is to strengthen one another, build up our
confidence and share a common testimony of faith. Yet by the time we get done with candles, musicians, sound systems, bulletins, announcements and special music, the beauty of the conclave seems to get swallowed up.

What is it I’m celebrating?

I would agree with Kool and the Gang that I can celebrate good times.

Celebrate another day of living.

I love to celebrate that evil viciously appears to be dominant until it’s suddenly snuffed by its own greed.

I like to celebrate that something can be non-existent and because I’m alive, the creativity I’ve been granted can make freshness appear.

What are we celebrating?

Some of the holidays that hang around baffle me. I’m certainly grateful for the Armed Forces, but how many times are we going to salute them every year? And does every celebration in America have to be accompanied with a protracted exercise in gluttony?

I celebrate that even as I write this, all across the world there are people I will never know who read it–and out of their English grammar propriety, feel completely licensed to rip it apart.

What a wonderful world.

That’s what we can celebrate–with all its madness, diversity and pending doom and gloom, life still manages to give us a daily clean canvas, available for beautiful painting.

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AIDS

Words from Dic(tionary)

dictionary with letter A

AIDS: (n) Acquired immune deficiency syndrome, a disease in which there is a severe loss of the body’s cellular immunity, greatly lowering the resistance to infection and malignancy.

Honestly, when the first reports came out on HIV, I didn’t take it very seriously.

Why? Because there’s always some new disease or bird flu they’re trying to frighten us with, to procure our listenership on some news broadcast.

Even when it was obvious that many people were contracting the disease, and famous folks like Rock Hudson were passing away, I still didn’t quite grasp the concept.

Truthfully, it was a little difficult to get past the “screamers.” You know what I mean by screamers, right?

You had the gay community, which insisted that no one cared because the disease was manifesting itself within their conclave.

And the Moral Majority, proclaiming it to be the “gay plague.”

So I don’t think the brunt of the reality of HIV and AIDS hit me until I received the phone call. It was a young lady who had performed in one of my plays years previously. She was in tears. She explained to me that she was HIV positive and was married to a man who was the same. The reason for her call, though, was that she had discovered she was pregnant and wanted us to pray that the baby would not be born infested with the virus.

Here in the confines of one family was nearly every conceivable way to contract this affliction. The girl had become infected by heterosexual sex, the man, through homosexual contact, and the baby was being threatened by merely exchanging blood with its mother.

Suddenly, the full impact and horror of the infestation was brought home to me. Even though all of these people I mentioned are still alive due to progress made with pharmaceuticals, my heart is always softened to the notion of a person touched by this horrendous condition when I remember the three of them.

Perhaps that’s the way we all are.

Until something jumps over our white picket fence and lands in our yard, we feel we can repel it or ignore it. I guess we can be critical of that, or we can be fully cognizant that God is no respecter of persons:

Just as blessing comes to all b… so does trial and the tribulation.

Accord

by J. R. Practix

dictionary with letter A

Accord: (v.)1.give or grant someone (power, status, or recognition):the powers accorded to the head of state [with two objects]:the young man had accorded her little notice 2. (accord with) (of a concept or fact) be harmonious or consistent with.

A meeting of the minds does assume that intelligence exists. So what happens when we proclaim that we’re going to have such a conclave–but knowledge, progress and wisdom have vacated the participants?

There is something wonderful about doing things in accord. It is a dynamic blending of granting one another individuality while simultaneously trusting our friend to use it for unity.

It’s a great thing to tell people that they are empowered–IF they use the energy to find reasons to get along with others. But if life boils down to a basic battle between Republicans, Democrats, conservatives, liberals, Protestants, Catholics, Crips and Bloods, we do no benefit whatsoever for the welfare of humankind by proclaiming that each one of us is uniquely “packaged.”

How do I know when folks are intelligent?

1. They seem to know it less than others do.┬áCall it humility, refer to it as simplicity or just dub it the true essence of “smart.” People with intellectual bearing are never overbearing.

2. Intelligent people are looking for reasons to agree. You can always identify a troublemaker who has some blackness in the gray matter by the chip on the shoulder and the determination to alienate from the world.

3. Intelligent people know that human thinking is greatly affected by the emotions. Therefore they use humor, pathos and examples to explain their position rather than charts, stats and facts.

4. And finally, people who are intelligent enough to seek “accord” always walk away from the table of discussion having learned something. You don’t get smarter by holding on to what you know and ignoring what you could know.

It will take these four steps for us to solve many of the problems in our society:

  • It will take a Republican recognizing the validity of a Democrat’s position.
  • It will take a liberal acknowledging the value of a conservative’s principles.
  • It will take a Protestant appreciating the devotion expressed by a Catholic.
  • And it will take a Blood being willing to wear blue without fear of retribution from a Crip.

Intelligence is accord. For after all, when people are at war, their brains have obviously gone on vacation.