Alice

Alice

Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Happy New Year Ladies

Here is a suggestion from Terry Hershey:
"If you need a new year resolution for your list, I have a good one.
A simple act. With a simple verb.
Be willing to light a candle."
(Papa does this almost everyday of his life)
Terry continues...
"We learn from the Jewish tradition that one who is willing to light a candle is a 'rodef shalom,' a pursuer of peace."

Ladies,
What a wonderful way to begin your day. What a wonderful way to begin a spiritual practice.
If you do nothing else to begin your day, just try taking time long enough to light one simple candle in a prayerful way.

And then take that light out into the world.

Happy New Year Ladies!

Love,
Papa

Saturday, December 21, 2013

CHRISTMAS 2013

CHRISTMAS GIFTS








A CHRISTMAS LETTER (2013) TO MY LITTLE LADIES

THE GIFT OF CHRISTMAS

DEAR
CAROLINE, ALICE, LILY AND ELEANOR,

AT CHRISTMAS WE CELEBRATE THE GIFT OF GOD IN THE FLESH. AS THE STORY GOES :

In the beginning was the Word and the Word was with God and the Word was God. The Word was with God in the beginning. Everything came into being through the Word, and without the Word nothing came into being.
What came into into being through the Word was life, and the life was the light for all people. The light shines in the darkness and the darkness doesn’t extinguish the light.
The Gospel of John
1: 1-5

Mysterious words indeed Ladies!

That Word came to be known as The Christ.
And that word now is The Cosmic Christ.

Jesus revealed in himself, the God who is in all of us.

What a great Christmas Gift!

Believe it or not, you too can be that gift to the world.

You too can be that light to the world.

You too can be that light that cannot be extinguished by the darkness.

You all have a particular gift to give to the world!

SO,

As you receive all your gifts this Christmas (whatever Christmas 

it is while you are reading this) Papa would encourage you to 

discover what gift it is that you have that can become your light unto the world.

Finding that gift is finding that image of God which was given to you at your birth.

And in finding that Christmas gift in yourself you create 

Christmas over and over again in the ways you live, love and be in this world.

And that gift is not under a tree, up in the sky and not even in Santa’s bag.

That gift is and always has been deep inside you.

God, the God in you, is closer to you than you are to yourself.

And when you find it:

The Word becomes flesh again.

So Merry Christmas Ladies.

Thank you for being such a gift to Papa!

I love you all!

Christmas 2013

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

SITTING AND BREATHING






Alice,
This November, 2013, I have two questions for you.
What do you believe?
And
What do you know?



If you continue your spiritual journey with great intention, the natural outcome of that may be “…a knowledge or sense that conveying or imparting religious faith in purely intellectual terms is no longer satisfactory
.” Willigis Jager, Mysticism for Modern Times

You may realize that you “…can never find the answer to (your) questions about the meaning of life along a purely cognitive path.

” Willigis Jager, Mysticism for Modern Times.

If this seems a bit lofty, just go to some quiet place and sit a bit on a regular basis, just breathing, saying nothing and thinking nothing. Do that for about ten years.

It’s that simple , that mysterious, that difficult and that wonderful!
Love,
Papa

Saturday, October 12, 2013


Alice,
There will come a time in your life when we will let go of your hand and let you go into the world and decide your on destination.
If you go into this world as who you really are you will have already arrived at your destination.
Then just live your life Alice.


Love,
Papa

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Letting Go As A Spiritual Practice


Alice,
That's you discovering Papa's new hearing aids.
Not only have I loss my hair but it seems my hearing has gotten worse.
So it is with these bodies we live in.
It seems Alice that as we age we have to practice the "art" of letting go, especially when it comes to our bodies.
That's a hard one for Papa. I am too body conscious. I'm not so much a health nut as I am vain. But in this case, my vanity has benefitted my body. I am in pretty good shape for my age.
But time will eventually make it's mark on me. And probably in ways that I will not be so happy about.
This is why it is important to grow out of our bodies into our spirits.
If we have done our work (which takes your whole life) in the things of the spirit, when our bodies start letting us down, it may just be a little easier to let go because we know it is the things of the spirit that will matter in our old age, not the flesh. But these spiritual things matter at all times.
Now don't think I am saying the flesh is bad. I'm not!
Enjoy your body!
Take care of your body!
That too will give your spirit a lift.

But in the end, our bodies get weaker but our spirits can keep growing until we take our last breath.

So "Letting Go".
That's one for you to ponder Alice.
Do you hear me?
I can you hear you!

Love,
Papa


Thursday, June 20, 2013

WORDLESS AGAIN

Dear Circus Girl,

Melt my heart.

I want to say more but it would just spoil the moment.

Love you,

Papa

Friday, May 31, 2013

HAPPY TWO YEARS OLD CIRCUS GIRL

HAPPY
BIRTHDAY
ALICE,

What a joy you have brought to so many people in just these two short years you have been with us.
When Papa imagines you the first thing that pops up in my mind is your wonderful smile.
And the next thing that pops up in my mind are the many circus acts your perform everyday.
And the next thing is just...
JUST YOUR 
"YOUNESS" 

(not a word Alice but your spirit has made it one)

So thanks for being you Alice!

That will always be the thing that blesses us and blesses God!

I'll leave your with this Rabbinic Story to ponder:

The story is told of Zusha, the great Chassidic 

master, who lay dying on his deathbed.

His students asked him, "Rebbe why are you sad?

After all the mitzvahs and good deeds you have 

don, you will surely get a great reward in heaven."

"I'm afraid...when I get to heaven God is not going 

to ask me 'Why weren't you more like Moses?' But 

I'm afraid God is going to ask me, 'Why weren't you 

more like Zusha?' And then what will I say?"





























Thursday, May 2, 2013

Look In Alice, Not Out

Alice,
Many people, including your Papa, have spent many years of their lives looking for God somewhere out there. Many people have spent their lives understanding only a God who is out there, watching us and every now and then showing up when we "need" God.

I think it was St. Augustine who said, 

"God is closer to us than we are to ourselves"

May I suggest you begin inside,
Inside yourself?

Ask Papa about this some day.

We can take a long slow walk together, enjoying all of God's presence in us and around us while we talk.

Love you Circus Girl,

Papa

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

MU

Alice,
First of all I miss you!
Second: I love this picture of you and your daddy
Third: Sometimes words destroy the real meaning of an event
Fourth: So I will bow in silence to this precious moment with your Daddy
Hands together,
Papa

Thursday, March 21, 2013

HAPPY SPRING Circus Girl









Dear Circus Girl,

I spent a lot of time with you this month. Lala spent so much time with you she has practically become your other sister. 

To say you have been entertaining is such an inept description of the life I see unfolding. 

You run, you jump, you play the harmonica, you blow bubbles, you (of course) climb on everything you can reach by sticking your leg straight up into the air, you dance, you go in circles, you watch Thomas, you read books (well kind of), you put your face close to the ground when you think you see a bee and you say, “Bee”, you lay your head on my shoulder and let me cuddle you when you see me, and of course you smile.

But of all the things Papa has listed about what you do, it’s who you are that has so touched me in a special way.

Alice you ARE so SWEET!!!!!!!!!

Happy Spring Sweet Circus Girl.

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

NARROW GATES

Sweet Alice 
(AKA Circus Girl)
Papa and Lala have been blessed with your presence in our home this week. Momma and Daddy are spending some quality time with each other and with your new precious sister Eleanor Grace.
Lala and I spent about an hour last night just watching you be you. It was one of the best movies we have ever seen!
We continue to fall more and more in love with who you are.
We also continue to be amazed at your circus ways and the adult supervision they require at times.
As you can see from the above picture, we have a gate in front of the stairs so you would not go up there by yourself. But as you can also see (the reason for the adult supervision) you are in the process of trying to stick your head through those rails or climb over them. At least when I first found you there you were trying to push your little head through the rails.
There truly are “narrow gates” to negotiate in our lives, especially in our spiritual lives Alice, but some are best left alone.
May I suggest you ponder what the narrow gate is in your spiritual life?
And even that requires some mature supervision from the elders around you.
And if you negotiate that narrow gate, many others gates won’t even matter.
Love,
Papa

Sunday, February 24, 2013

SECOND SUNDAY OF LENT






ANOTHER WISE TEACHER PUT IT THIS WAY:



“Do not be anxious about tomorrow; tomorrow will look after it self,” he taught. (Matt 6:34)

 Realise yourself, that is, in the present moment, because your happiness and fulfilment are here and now. (JOHN MAIN)

IF YOU GIRLS WILL CHEW ON THIS ONE PARTICULAR PIECE OF SCRIPTURE AND JOHN MAIN'S SHORT COMMENTARY FOR A LONG TIME , YOUR LIFE WILL CHANGE.

BUT IT DOES TAKE MUCH PRACTICE. 
IT TAKES PAYING ATTENTION.
IT TAKES MINDFULNESS.
IT TAKES TAKING TIME TO BE STILL.
IT TAKES WORK.

BUT WITH ALL THE "TAKING" COMES A WONDERFUL "GIVING".

PAPA CONTINUES TO WORK ON THIS AFTER MANY, MANY YEARS.

LOVE,
PAPA




Sunday, February 17, 2013

Bungee Girl


Dear Alice,
It's February 17, 2013. You are almost 21 months old. Above is a picture of a modified crib for those who decide at a very young age to start bungee jumping in the middle of the night.

Seems the "Circus Girl" has started jumping/falling out of her crib and wanting to explore on her own when she is assumed to be tucked away safe and sound.

Alice we never want to quench that circus spirit of yours but please allow us to take the necessary precautions to keep you safe in the meantime.
Seems God knew what God was doing in blessing you with a daddy who is an engineer.
Who knows what other inventions he is going to have to come up with just to keep you safe?
Have fun Circus Girl but for gosh sakes BE SAFE!

love you,
Papa

Saturday, February 9, 2013

Blueberry Enlightenment

Alice,
You truly are the Circus Girl!
I'm wondering if you parents are getting your blueberries from Washington State or Colorado.
Back in my day we used brownies!

Then again, as Papa thinks about your life so far,
You seemed to have been born to smile and laugh,
I guess the blueberries just seem to take it over the top.

A berry, berry special little girl!

Love you,
Papa

Thursday, January 31, 2013

Hello




Dear Ladies and Baby Faulkner,
Papa, (the grandfather formerly known as Grampa, morphed by Caroline and Alice into Papa), has continued to be delinquent in his writing to all of you on a consistent basis. I have much catching up to do with Circus Girl and Lily especially. Caroline, as you know, you are a once a month person at this point. But as a way of explanation, I offer the following thoughts about my own personal struggles in this wild and crazy life I have been given. 
Seems this spiritual life, like my name, is constantly being morphed into something else. I’m not saying that is bad. You should know that if you become very intentional about this great Mystery we call God you will find the plates shifting all the time as far as your own understanding of God. Does God shift, maybe? But I really don’t know but life has a way of peeling back layers and layers of our conditioning so we might see better just what it is we need to see for the moment. Paul reminds us that we see through a glass dimly (darkly) but there will come a day when we see things just as they really are. Maybe that’s partly what I mean about an intentional spiritual life, seeing things as they truly are. For sure the reality is just what it is but it may take us a while to see it. And I am beginning to understand that the only way to see that reality is by dying. I don’t mean dying in the sense of not breathing anymore. I mean another kind of dying. The kind of dying Jesus talks about when he says “if you would find your life you must first lose it”. There are those who say we must die before we die. I’m still not sure just what that experience is but in some ways I believe I have been doing some dying over the last six months. It would be impossible for me to go into the details of that in this love letter to all of you but suffice it to say that I had to step back and do some deep personal work before I could begin to write to all you again. It has been wonderfully painful and tender at the same time. The pain was experienced mostly by my ego but the tenderness was experienced by my soul, a grace mysteriously given. 
So I haven’t really been ignoring all of you. I just had some things to work on if I was going to try and continue to be a good Papa. 
Let me sum it up by using one of my most favorite quotes from T.S. Eliot’s poem The Waste Land.

We shall not cease from exploration 
And the end of all our exploring 
Will be to arrive where we started 
And know the place for the first time.
So here is Papa, arriving where he started, and knowing the place for the first time.
I’m not going to unpack all this for all of you. You need to do that for yourselves, just like I am and will continue to do until the day I take my last breath.
I will leave you with these words from Richard Rohr’s Book, Immortal Diamond
The Song of The True Self
Within us there is an inner, natural dignity. (You often see it in older folks.)
An inherent worthiness that already knows and enjoys. (You see it in children.)
It is an immortal diamond waiting to be mined and is never discovered undesired.
It is a reverence humming with you that must be honored.
Call it soul, the unconscious, deep consciousness, or the indwelling Holy Spirit.
Call it nothing.
It does not need the right name or right religion to show itself.
It does not even need to be understood. It is usually wordless.
It just is, and shows itself best when we are silent, or in love, or both.
I will call it the True Self here.
It is God-in-All-Things yet not circumscribed by any one thing.
It is enjoyed only when each part is in union with all other parts,
Because only then does it stand in the full truth.
Once in a while, this True Self becomes radiant and highly visible in one lovely place or person.
Superbly so, and for all to see, in the body of the Risen Christ.
And note That I did say “body.” It begins here and now in our embodied state in this world. Thus, the Christ Mystery travels the roads of time.
Once you have encountered this True Self—and once is more than enough—the False Self will begin to fall away on its own.
This will take most of your life, however, just as it did in Jesus.
Love,
Papa

Sunday, January 13, 2013

Tenderness


Dear Alice,
Kaka, aka as Papa, just loves this picture of you.
So Tender!
I pray as you get older you remember to be tender with yourself,
remembering that you are made in the very image of God.
Find this person Alice and you find God living inside you.

Love you,
Kaka