Coalesce

Coalesce: (v) come together and form one mass or whole.

“Can you get behind this?”

People are always asking me that. They think they have found a noble cause and they want to enlist my support so as to create the appearance of mass approval

I don’t want to get behind anything.

I don’t like to be pushy, and if you’re standing behind something, you’re always pushing it.

I also don’t like to pull things. If a cause has so much dead weight that it needs to be pulled forward, it probably needs to be taken out behind the barn and shot.

I like to find things that are historically, emotionally, humanly and creatively everlasting, and melt into them.

Yes–coalesce.

Although there is a great struggle to become famous and well-known, the chance of such an event occurring in one’s life is astronomically small. I think the best you can hope for as a voice crying in the wilderness–or as a penner of thoughts–is to be considered an I. R. S. writer. And the I. R. S. stands for “I Read Somewhere.”

Nobody will ever remember it came from me, or you, but they might reference the material in making a point.

In a day and age when we think that peace and good will come from spending money on bombs, it is unlikely that you will find a following of human beings who want to focus on your particular message of cooperation.

But simply deciding to coalesce oneself into great expectations and noble efforts is the best way to pass the time while we either wait for common sense to have its day, or for us to complete the journey… and be recycled into the stardust.

 

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Civics

Civics: (n) the study of the rights and duties of citizenship.

I was a freshman. At least, I think I was.

The class was called “Civics.” I’m pretty convinced that it doesn’t exist today, or it’s absorbed into some other aspect of social studies.

It was a combination of history, government and propaganda.

History in the sense that it took the time to explain why the founding individuals decided on the choices they pursued.

Government in the sense that it broke down what was referred to as “the balance of power” among the executive, legislative and the judicial.

And propaganda because it strenuously attempted to convince us that this form of representation was the best in the world, and that the balance of power was actually balanced.

But for balance of power to work, requires balanced people. Sometimes we forget that government is just an idea until folks of integrity and single-mindedness honor it.

So referring back to my civics:

  • The legislative branch is supposed to make the laws.
  • The executive branch enforces them.
  • And the judicial branch interprets them.

Well, you might immediately see that the whole system is out of whack.

Perhaps it would be a better idea to interpret the laws before we pass them and enforce them. Otherwise we put ourselves through the agonizing strain of legalizing activities which later have to be found unconstitutional.

By the time I got out of Civics class and looked at the history of the United States–too many wars, too much indecision, too little compassion for all its citizenry–I realized that every system put together by committee is rarely suitable for the individual.

And since we are a country of individuals, trying to work in union, the greatest civics that we can institute is a pair of ears with a mind to cooperation.

 

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Celestial

Celestial: (adj) belonging or relating to heaven.

Did you ever realize that all the descriptions we have of eternal life are related to us via ancient manuscripts, from people who lived in the first century A. D.? And then we’re working under the trust that he or she actually had a vision of the supernal location.

Other writers have tried to parallel the existing insights, but we are pretty well stuck with an ancient history about our future history.

Do you find that a bit disheartening?

To me, the celestial realm is already a trifle bizarre. Since my physical body is made up of the same stuff as a bear and moose–flesh, blood, veins, arteries–it does seem a bit presumptuous to think that my wilderness friends turn into dust and I live forever.

It’s because I have a soul. Which means they don’t. Yet there is a certain amount of arrogance mingled with ignorance in the presumption of walking on streets of gold.

So where does that leave me? It certainly places me in the category of believers who yearn for a heaven someday. Yes, I have enough arrogance and ignorance to line up with those masses.

But it does give me pause to appreciate, generate and evaluate my earthly lifespan with greater tenderness and passion.

 

 

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Brotherhood

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Brotherhood: (n) a community of people linked by a common interest, religion, or trade

She crinkled her twenty-four-year-old nose, frowning, and said to me, “I don’t know about that. It was before I was born.”Dictionary B

Somewhere along the line, people have decided to trace the history of our race beginning with the date of their birth. Nothing before–or, I assume, after–really matters at all.

So in the process of pursuing this arrogant practice, we discarded a lot of powerful ideas.

One of them is the concept of brotherhood.

When I was a boy, there were many songs that talked about brotherhood, the human family and the common spirit of mankind.

They have disappeared.

Matter of fact, if you sang one of these songs, people would think it was maudlin.

Because in the process of establishing individuality, we have eliminated similarity. Also, while trying to convince ourselves that we are unique “snowflakes,” we have allowed an avalanche to sweep away much of our commonality.

We’ve replaced the entire Earth tribe with allegiance to our own domestic family. We are convinced that if we love our kin, we need do nothing more–even though a great teacher once warned us that if we only love those who love us, we’re stinking slobs.

What am I looking for?

Reasons to love everyone I meet.

If I don’t, I will eventually notice that their particular birth certificate frees me of the responsibility to give a shit.

 

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Brainwash

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Brainwash: (v) to make someone adopt radically different beliefs by force

If you happen to be a person who believes in God and the teachings of the Old and New Testament, you might have an understanding of what leads people astray and causes them to follow the most ridiculous ideas with subservient reverence.Dictionary B

For after all, the first brainwasher was referred to as a “serpent,” and he hung out in a garden called Eden.

He possessed a total understanding of the psyche of the human being. He realized you could get people to do almost anything if you offered them two advantages.

Number One: “What I’m about to give you is going to make you live a long time. You’re not gonna die. You’re going to bury all your friends, and you’ll have enough energy to till your garden and dance at your great-granddaughter’s wedding.”

Number Two: “If you will just trust me, you’re going to become smart. Smarter than everyone around you–superior. SO smart that you will be considered wise.”

Throughout history, promises of immortality and supreme intelligence have caused the human race to chase all sorts of devils–political, religious, financial, academic and even Mum and Pop.

Yes, we all become brainwashed when we believe that we control all the aspects of our mortality, or we feel the desperate need to be smarter than everyone else.

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Bomb

Bomb: (n) a container designed to explode on impact

A red woodpecker.Dictionary B

I can close my eyes and envision such a creature. Maybe it’s because as a kid I watched “Woody the Woodpecker.”

A sirloin steak covered with mushroom gravy with a side order of garlic shrimp.

That’s easy for me to imagine. I have experience. I have eaten all of these foods.

A moist kiss on the lips with a mixture of musky breath and a hint of mint.

Once again, all in the annals of my personal history and awareness.

A bomb.

I have no experience.

I have seen more bombings on television than I have red woodpeckers, but because I have no real sense of the horror, the heat, the explosive range and the demolition, I am dealing with an idea rather than a reality.

It is why, when considering our enemies, I choose not to scream with the careless crowd, “Bomb the shit out of them.”

 

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Bill of Rights

Bill of Rights:(n) the first ten amendments to the US Constitution

Dictionary B

So you’re sittin’ around with your buddies and you’ve just written a Constitution for a new little country which you have dubbed “The United States of America.”

You have high hopes.

But honestly, taking a peek at history, the life expectancy of such a national prospect is very dim.

Meanwhile, you’ve gone to the pub to celebrate your endeavor, and while talking with your friends, it occurs to you that you left out guarantees for personal freedom.

You feel a little silly, right?

So almost immediately, you go in and amend your document by adding ten ideas which guarantee that no tyrant will ever again trample on the God-given personal pursuits of any individual citizen.

Man, it seems noble.

But moving ahead a couple hundred years, we have the situation where the prevention of one tyrant opens the door to over three hundred million of them, as each person determines the boundaries of his or her actions, based upon the Bill of Rights.

This places us in a powder keg of controversy, with each citizen fearing they are being set aside in favor of honoring the liberties of another.

What is missing from the Bill of Rights? Some old-fashioned, damn common sense.

For instance, freedom of speech sounds really good until you actually have to sit and listen to one which is completely filled with nonsense and vitriol.

The right to bear arms may have once been practical, when single shot muskets took a minute to load and had no potential for rapidly firing, killing dozens at a time.

It goes on and on.

Oh, wait. There’s the Fifth Amendment, which supposedly protects us against self-incrimination, while actually ending up being a confession in parenthesis.

Just as people who translate science and the Bible as being immutable and without need of edit, those who worship the Constitution and its amendments fail to realize that the Founding Fathers were really just a bunch of goofs who got tired of being pushed around by crazy King George.

What they wrote and believed is neither supreme nor self-contained.

It is up to the intelligence of each generation to find the common good of all the citizens without making it seem that America is a restaurant with only tables built for one

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