Broaden

j-r-practix-with-border-2

Broaden: (v) to widen

Searching until one finds a moral certainty.

It used to be the goal of the human race. Obviously, we never achieved it. Otherwise we wouldn’t have burned witches, hated people of different colors or put leeches on sick folk to heal them of pneumonia.Dictionary B

Often moral certainty is an interpretation of a code of ethics printed in a book–whether it’s the Bible or “How to Win Friends and Influence People.” We scour the material to find the commandments that assure us that we are on the high ground.

The difficulty with this procedure is that simultaneously, the inclusion of other lifestyles suggests that we broaden our outlook on morality–often to the detriment or even deterioration of some of our certainties.

When I was a boy divorce was bad. Now it ranges from being painful to necessary, but obviously common.

Things like abortion, homosexuality and marijuana smoking were condemned and even prosecuted. Now we have been asked to broaden our definitions of acceptable behavior to counteract what was once considered to be a certainty, and instead, deem it a transition in our understanding.

Because we are broadening ourselves so much, we are definitely yanking at the seams of the moral conscience.

So what is immoral?

Without doubt, the denigration of another human being for the satisfaction of our pleasure or religious fervor is immoral.

The purposeful bullying or intimidation of an individual or group of souls falls into the spectrum of unseemly.

But are there carnal acts or deeds that we consider immoral?

Stealing, for instance, is permissible if done on a corporate level instead of a “pauper” one.

Sexuality has to have justification and mutual adult consent to be given license.

And the immorality of indifference to the plight of others can even be disguised as a political maneuver.

I am not a great advocate of moral certainty–but I will tell you that merely broadening our horizons does not guarantee that we see the truth.

 

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Boon

Boon: (n) a thing that is helpful or beneficial.

In the pursuit of progress, it is paramount that we learn what is so important to the human race that we dare not surrender it.Dictionary B

I completely agree that putting leeches on human skin to suck out the bad blood of disease was a horrible idea.

Turning Africans into slaves to work plantations without wages or a retirement plan was sinister.

But we must understand, there are certain attributes of virtue which cannot be compromised simply because they seem tedious.

In the past thirty years, love has been translated from an action into a sentiment.

This has been very subtle.

We have allowed our entertainers, our politicians and even our religionists to convince us that love is a high-sounding ideal, but most of the time beyond our grasp. Therefore, we are encouraged to settle for lesser representations, like friendliness, giving to the poor, or even lust.

There is only one boon to the human race.

There is only one condition that creates the oil of gladness that lubricates us for bumping up against one another.

It is love.

We cannot give up on it.

Matter of fact, our mission is to define it in such realistic ways that we just naturally pursue it.

Without this, we begin to believe that individuality is holy–instead of the communion of souls in gentle compromise.

 

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AMA

dictionary with letter A

AMA: (abbr.) American Medical Association

Much to the chagrin of a physician or two who have crossed my path, I look on the medical field with the same level of respect–and caution–that I do with politics and religion.

I know that doctors want me to have faith in them and to accept their diagnosis and treatment without question. But like politics and religion, medicine has things it does well and other things yet to be achieved.

For instance, politics affords us a rudimentary form of democracy which is certainly better than any other style of government presently available. But it also thrusts upon us politicians, gridlock and a ridiculous amount of debate, which stall needful expansion.

In the same fashion, religion stands as a symbol of goodness and kindness in a world gone mad, while simultaneously translating the mercy of God into the misery of restrictions.

The American Medical Association is much the same. Although they offer many advances, it is undoubtedly true that much of what they do will be viewed in the future as the equivalent of placing leeches on the body of the ailing George Washington.

It’s just important to understand:

  • What medicine knows and what medicine doesn’t know
  • What religion does well and what religion does poorly
  • And how politics advances the cause of humanity, and also how it can deter

So here’s a clue: don’t do anything until you understand. And that doesn’t mean that you should comprehend, or why don’t you “get it?”

Move out on the basis of your own understanding.

Several years ago I told my personal physician that a certain medication made me feel sick, and rather than lowering my blood pressure, was actually raising it. She doubted my assertion. So the next time I went in I brought a report, explaining that the pill was under scrutiny and needed to be carefully administered. She was still not convinced, but I insisted that she take me off the medication. When she did I started feeling better.

Two months later the drug was removed from the market.

This is not my doctor’s fault; she was following the precepts of her particular religious practice. It was my responsibility to avoid something I didn’t understand.

There are many things I don’t understand about politics and religion–and also medicine.

But rather than assuming I’m ignorant, I just choose to delay joining the party … until I’m sure of what’s in the punch.

Aberration

by J. R. Practix

dictionary with letter A

Aberration: n.  a departure from what is normal, usual or expected, typically one that is unwelcome.

A black man reading a book

A woman voting

A glass bulb which produces light

Removing leeches from the body to assist in healing

The knowledge that tiny bacteria cause disease

The earth is round

People of different races marrying each other

An evolving universe

All men are created equal

For God so loved the world

Jews are not rats

Rock and roll is really great music

Long hair, as it turns out, is not going to destroy human sexuality

God loves everybody

All of these were once aberrations–unwelcome departures from the a “normal thinking.”

If you will excuse me, I must leave now, to discover the next aberration–and do my best to keep from fighting it.