Cower

Cower: (v) to crouch as in fear or shame.

Sometimes a story is just a story.

It is told to make a point, hoping that the lesson can be learned more easily with the introduction of characters, props and surroundings.funny wisdom on words that begin with a C

When we begin to believe that every story is a commandment or that every tale placed in a holy book is intended to be the immutable word of God, we not only threaten the world around us with our piety, but we drastically miss the point.

It doesn’t take long to discover this if you ever read the Good Book.

The story of Adam and Eve is not placed in the pages to warn of the danger of eating too much fruit or to suggest that blindly following the commandments of the Almighty is the best way to achieve a good human life.

The purpose of the story is to let us know what we should do when we inevitably fail. For let me tell you, there are only two pieces of ignorance on the Earth:

1. “I never make mistakes.”

2. “I always make mistakes and am not worthy.”

Both of these paths make you dangerous to the people around you and cripple you in your pursuit of living an abundant life.

The story says that Adam and Eve were not supposed to eat some piece of fruit in the Garden. Truthfully, I do not know what in the hell that means, for heaven’s sakes.

Nor do you. You can feel free to speculate on what the fruit might have been, the danger it offered, or parallel it with some action in our world today. But certainly the Creator who tinkered with our brain to form a psyche He called human was fully cognizant that saying “no” to such beings as us was an invitation to rebellion.

People do not like to be told not to do something.

“Thou shalt not” is the best way to set in motion “thou wilt.”

So the story of Eden is not about learning discipline, but rather, learning what to do when personal discipline breaks down.

Having eaten the goddamn fruit, Adam and Eve plotted, becoming liars, deceivers, cover-up artists and hiders.

They cowered.

Feeling that God was more interested in His rules and regulations than He was in them, they ran away in fear of His judgment.

They completely misunderstood.

Had they walked out together, naked as jaybirds, with their half-eaten apple in hand and presented it to God with a repentant heart, we might still be living in Paradise.

God was not trying to build a Paradise that was perfect, but rather, one where imperfection could be revealed without fear.

If your situation, your religion, your politics, your family, your spouse, your school or any other mortal man or woman causes you to cower, it can’t possibly be borne of goodness.

We were not meant to cower, just as we are not meant to be sin-free.

We were meant to boldly live, to boldly fail and to boldly repent.

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Cover-up

Cover-up: (n) any action, stratagem, or other means of concealing or preventing investigation or exposure.

 Let me give you an example.

Let’s say we’re talking about the electric bill. Yes—that’s good. A common situation which we all certainly share in common.funny wisdom on words that begin with a C

If you’re trying to find out whether your friend, your wife or your roommate has paid the electric bill, it is necessary to phrase the question in such a way that they will not choose to lie because they already feel intimidated by your approach.

Now, you may totally disagree with this, but I have found if you want people to tell you the truth, be prepared that there’s a greater chance that they will lie. So don’t set them up to fib by making them feel stupid or guilty if they tell you the truth.

Back to the electric bill. Here is a terrible approach if you’re trying to find out if your partner has paid the bill:

“You DID pay the electric bill, right?”

You see, for them to tell you that they haven’t, they would have to be willing to be truthful and also survive a wave of anger you have already told them is ready to hit their beach.  Not a good approach if you’re going to avoid cover-up.

A second bad angle is:

“What day did you pay the electric bill?”

Although not as intense, it still connotes that a normal, intelligent person would have already paid, and if they want to come across normal and intelligent but have not paid, they just might have to lie.

I must give you a third, horrible choice:

“The electric bill—that’s your department, isn’t it?”

The demons of being defensive will immediately rise and choke the truth out of your friend, making it impossible for him or her to tell you that it completely slipped their mind.

The only way you can guarantee that someone is going to tell you the truth is:

“I think I forgot to pay the electric bill. Did you pay it?”

You see, now if they didn’t pay it, they join you in being a fellow-delinquent. The pressure is off to shoulder the blame. There’s no need to provide an excuse, since you have already admitted that it was probably your responsibility.

I guess it all boils down to whether you want to find out if the electric bill has been paid, or if you would prefer to listen to cover-up after cover-up.

Until the house goes dark. 

 

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Correction Fluid

Correction fluid: (n) an opaque, quick-drying fluid for obliterating handwritten or typewritten matter.

As I read the definition, I smile a bit over the word “obliterating.”

If you didn’t live through the liquid paper or white-out phase of office business done with a typewriter, you missed a juncture in time when creative effort was often made to try to cover a mistake, when typing the entire letter over again might have been quicker.

First and foremost—for a long time, it was just white correction fluid. This meant if you were typing on paper that was white, and by the way, preferably twenty funny wisdom on words that begin with a C
pound, you might have a chance, if you used the brush sparingly, of covering up your typing mistake and having the letter look as if it had never been sullied.

But unfortunately, if you worked at a business where stationery was used, with a higher quality paper which sometimes had a tint, then you had a carnival of difficulties.

First, the heavier paper took your typed letter or word deeper into the texture, which made it much more difficult to cover it up with correction fluid.

Then—guess what? White correction fluid on pale blue stationery does not avoid the appearance of a mistake, but rather, advertises it.

So, they came up with colored correction fluid. But as you probably would guess, matching the color was extremely tricky.

I had a friend who was so adept that she could mingle two different colors of correction fluid to get the exact color of her company’s stationery. Then, after twenty or twenty-five minutes of fussing with the “cover-up,” passing the letter around the office to see if anybody noticed the use of the correction fluid, you would tentatively fold it up, put it in an envelope and send it off.  Then the next time you talked to the recipient of your correspondence, they would make some sort of joke about how the correction fluid had not totally dried—so the letter stuck together.

It was one of those ideas that seemed really smart until it was actually put into practice and it became very complicated to pull it off and still look professional and error-free.

Thank God for the arrival of the computer, where you can hit the back space, and nobody ever need know your office-place iniquity.


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Coordinate

Coordinate: (v) to place or arrange in proper order or position.

“Where am I?”

I find that many people spend too much time trying to figure out, “Who am I?”

There is some childish notion that we can be separate from the rest of humankind without any regard for the flow of the times, and be able to maintain our autonomy without finding ourselves lonely and out of step.funny wisdom on words that begin with a C

It is not 1955. We do not have television shows where men and women who are married have to sleep in separate beds. We are allowed to say the word “pregnant.” Chauvinism is no longer an acceptable behavior, or even one that can be winked at as just part of “human tribe banter.”

It is not 1974. We are no longer going to tolerate a President who breaks the law and tries to cover it up. (At least I hope not.)

It is not 1985. We are no longer promoting greed and believing that the AIDS virus is a punishment from God against the gay community.

Where am I?” is a very important question. If I am not able to coordinate what I believe in some sort of harmony with the world around me, I will not only be ineffective, but can quickly gain the reputation for being bigoted and notorious.

While I am sure some people are frightened that we’re losing the moral fiber of our society, a decision was made millions and millions of years ago by a Creator—to imbue His creation with free will.

Free-will opens the door to evolution. Evolution invites change.

There is only one immutable fact: if we don’t love our neighbor as ourselves, we will always be out of step and out of time.

We must coordinate with the world around us.

To do so, we must honor where we are much more than who we are.


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Brought

j-r-practix-with-border-2

Brought: past participle of bring

It is brief.

A breath in time.Dictionary B

A question suspended in the air, seeking an interesting reply.

It often happens at a pot-luck dinner.

If you find yourself walking in with a covered dish, someone may ask, “What have you brought?”

At that point it is up to you, in as few words as possible, to explain your offering and make it so alluring that someone wants to dash off to grab a spoon and partake.

Much time can be spent preparing food, but it is more important to come up with a promotion for your entree which will cause the world to salivate.

I see people walking by me every day.

I sense the need inside them.

I can sometimes even feel the pulsing greed.

  • They want.
  • They yearn.
  • They expect.

But since we are not surrounded by a planet of waiters who are constantly inquiring, “What can I get for you?” we must realize that the common question from those we meet will be, “What have you brought?”

What is under your cover-up?

What have you decided to put together to enhance this party?

Often it is not the quality of our preparation but instead, the joy we bring in unveiling it.

What have you brought?

What delicacy can you present to the human tribe?

Have you decided how to feed the hunger in the hearts of human beings–or do you come weak, requiring sustenance yourself?

What have you brought?

The answer will often determine whether you’re accepted or rejected.

 

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