Clergyman

Clergyman: (n) a male priest, minister, or religious leader, especially a Christian one

All the mistakes I’ve made in my life were caused by me thinking that what I had to offer was not enough.

Whenever I calmed down and realized that the stash in my duffel bag was the total subsistence of my life and journey, I was fine.

But when I allowed myself to be intimidated by forces around me which deemed my offering to be meager because it lacked some
certification, I always ended up either a fool or a liar.

I wanted to help people.

I wanted to use my art to do so.

I wanted to share a message that had humor, hope and heft.

But I also once was very young, and contended that I needed some title to punctuate my adequacy.

Since I did not go to college, I wasn’t allowed to be called “a Reverend.” Therefore I could not be a clergyman.

I don’t know why I wanted to pursue such a position–I guess I just wanted folks to be impressed when they heard the full extent of my resume spoken in a word: “minister.”

So I lied. I manufactured higher learning. And eventually I just called myself a “Reverend” even though I didn’t have any pedigree to bark out spirituality.

It took me many years to escape the foolishness of my insecurity. As soon as I did, I realized that being a clergyman was actually to my disadvantage, because my music, writing, dramatic pursuits and screenplays were much more effective tools for reaching my brothers and sisters than climbing into a pulpit and emoting.

I often think, what is it I’m doing today that’s equally as stupid as my pursuit of being a false cleric?

I don’t know. But I keep looking.

Because if I catch it early, maybe I can avoid some of the embarrassment that occurs when people finally find out the truth.

And…

They always do.

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Apathetic

dictionary with letter A

Apathetic: (adj) showing or feeling no interest, enthusiasm or concern.

Even though the aspiration of many organizations is to gain the status of “institution,” we must realize that when this is achieved, those who participate begin to feel like inmates instead of followers.

I feel this when I go to church.

Yesterday I sat in the back of one of these “cathedral-esque” arenas and allowed myself to be the proverbial fly on the wall, watching, listening and taking in the ambience of what the American religious community calls worship.

Several things came to my mind immediately:

1. Everything was too familiar.

Once we gain familiarity, we have a certain sense of serenity–but also a deep and overwhelming realization of boredom.

2. Everyone had their own reason for being there.

In an atmosphere in which unity of spirit is meant to be the goal, there were so many ghosts haunting the room that we did not connect unless we were required to shake a hand or “pass the peace.”

3. Conversations were going on while discourse was being offered.

If the hearers were not convinced that something was important, they felt free to ignore the prattle coming from the pulpit and indulge in their own activities.

4. A certain level of misery was being passed off as devotion.

Human beings are not good at suffering and don’t become better by practicing it. The best we can do is pray that in the hour of our greatest need, courage will arise. Simulating our unworthiness through religious dependency only makes us bitter.

When I looked at these four actions, I realized I had arrived at the climate–and therefore definition–of apathetic.

For I will tell you that an apathetic lifestyle infests anyone who believes that they become better than others because of the level of their sacrifice.

 

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Thank you for enjoying Words from Dic(tionary) —  J.R. Practix

Annunciate

dictionary with letter A

Annuciate: (v) to announce something.

“Hear ye, hear ye!” the town crier squalled at the top of his lungs.

To annunciate.

Yet I believe the definition has evolved over the years, has it not? It is no longer about making an announcement, but rather, the idea that to annunciate is to speak clearly.

Maybe this change was necessary because over the years misunderstanding has tainted the original proclamation.

We must realize that clarity is just as important as purity. There are many people who feel they can annunciate great truth from holy books, but because they do it with a hypocritical accent or a vicious tone, the words never quite land on the human heart with comprehension.

I’ve heard individuals suggest that somebody speaks “with a nasal tone.” Actually the nose is a great reverberator, and when used, generates clearness of speech rather than inhibiting it.

Sometimes people fail to annunciate because they don’t want their meaning to be grasped. Ambiguity is a great advantage to those who have decided to be chicken-shit.

Case in point: politics always looks for sentences that can have double or even triple interpretations so as to protect the politician from defining a position.

Yet sooner or later, those who announce with purpose and represent their cause precisely are the ones who advance the human race in the direction of unity.

For after all, once you proclaim “liberty and justice for all” it is difficult to tolerate segregation and inequity.

And when you’ve stood in a pulpit and spoken “God is love” and the words ring out like a bell in the heart of mankind, it is nearly impossible to transform that thought into a vengeful and hateful Being who wishes to destroy portions of His creation because of their status.

To annunciate: to announce, unafraid to articulate … knowing that the truth that makes us free must be spoken faithfully.

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Thank you for enjoying Words from Dic(tionary) —  J.R. Practix

Ale

Words from Dic(tionary)

dictionary with letter A

Ale: (n) a type of beer with a bitter flavor and higher alcoholic content

There are three important words that must be understood, otherwise each one of us teeters on the verge of falling over the cliff into the great abyss of obnoxious.

If you don’t know the difference among these words, you will start using them interchangeably, which renders you ineffective and nearly inert.

  • Prejudice
  • Opinion
  • Insight

When I looked at today’s word from the dictionary, I realized that nearly everything I would write on this subject was not only irrelevant, but certainly should be cast into the great vat of useless.

I don’t drink beer. So since ale is stronger, it hasn’t passed my lips. Therefore, for me to pontificate on this subject would not only be ridiculous, but harmful to the general good of those ale-drinkers  who are much wiser in their tastes than me, and who would be willing to offer insight instead of producing opinion and prejudice.

I have often told people that my one and only experience with beer led me to believe that it tasted like what I thought fly spray would be like if I was stupid enough to ingest it.

I am weird. I don’t like to put things in my mouth that don’t taste good–which normally, to me, is sweet or salty–just to prove that I have the kind of buds located in my tongue that are versatile and universal.

Mine is not a moral objection; mine has no social implication. Beer and ale just taste like beer and ale to me, which honestly, leaves me ailing.

So please forgive my lack of contribution to this topic. What I tried to do was avoid opinion and prejudice as much as possible, while admitting my lack of insight.

Now if we could just get people in academia, pulpit and government to do the same, we might arrive at our ignorance much more quickly … and alleviate it through education and experience.