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A West Coast lawyer’s first-person account of race and reconciliation

A West Coast lawyer’s first-person account of race and reconciliation

Childhood friends, then ‘tribal’ enemies, come to terms with a history of violence

In 1960, a few months before a life lesson

BY DANIEL D. WOO — In 1960 when I was in 7th grade, a bunch of kids started the “Boo for Woo” club.  I was furious.

Our family moved to the United States in 1953 when I spoke only Mandarin Chinese and not a word of English.  The Geary Act extended the 1882 Chinese Exclusion Act until 1943 when the laws were amended allowing up to 105 Chinese immigrants a year.

We came into the US as political refugees and became citizens in 1963 under a special bill passed in Congress. It wasn’t until The Immigration Act of 1965 that the immigration laws were reformed allowing Chinese and other Asians to come into the United States in large numbers.

Our family wound up in a neighborhood in San Jose where there were almost no other Asians, a small number of blacks, and a few Hispanics.  The majority were predominantly white Protestants, and at my school there were also Catholics and Jews.

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Where my spiritual path and science meet

Where my spiritual path and science meet

“Can enlightenment happen through meditation and practice?” Drawing on Eckhart Tolle, her personal experience and science, the answer is: Yes


By Anonymous — I began meditating about two and a half years ago, at the urging of a then-friend (translation: a fellow I was very briefly dating.) I was an avid journal-writer, and felt that was enough for clearing the detritus-of-the-day from my mind.

But a couple weeks later, when someone came into my office and was handing out flyers for beginning meditation classes, I decided to take up the invitation. My work ‘situation’ was super-stressful, and I thought that meditation might help ameliorate the effects more than what I saw people around me using to cope — from Ambien to alcohol.

I also have an intuitive faith that if something is put in front of my face two or three times, it’s probably a Moby Dick of a message from something beyond my mind trying to jog the latter.

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Spiritual Surf: Lindsay + Linda Lovelace; Lady Gaga; Skinny men “in”

Spiritual Surf: Lindsay + Linda Lovelace; Lady Gaga; Skinny men “in”

Lindsay seeks a new Inferno; A year without sex?; Deepak mentors Gaga; Evangelicals and oil

Inferno: Lindsay Lohan set to star in porn-star-turned-feminist Linda Lovelace’s bio.  Lohan’s character (Linda Susan Boreman, aka, Linda Lovelace) descends into the fire pit of sexual exploitation and abuse.

Can delayed sexual gratification lead to greater intimacy? Hephzibah Anderson’s new book Chastened, recommends women slow down the freight-train of sex without intimacy.

Lady Gaga and her bizarre Illuminati dreams: Gaga confides in Deepak Chopra, Rolling Stone interview reveals. Lady Gaga’s performances are a dream come true in more ways than one: Gaga relates how her morbid dreams provide material for the stage.

French stripper’s “tribute” to aboriginal culture: Motives for topless dance on Ulura Rock questioned

The skinny man movement: More men dieting and seeking surgery to be thin

Evangelicals take on Gulf oil spill: Distance from Creation = distance from God

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Guilt, shame and the whole chakra thing

Guilt, shame and the whole chakra thing

We all know guilt. And some of us understand first chakras. Both are about our primal sense of safety: acceptance

BY DAVID RICKEY — All of us have experienced guilt, and some of us are plagued with feelings of shame. These are very primitive emotions tied to tribal issues embedded in the first chakra.

The need to belong and be accepted by the tribe/family provides the fundamental sense of safety and well-being.

The threat of being abandoned by the tribe is experienced as the threat of death.

When we live at the level of the first chakra — in the ancient Eastern tradition, the chakra hierarchy assigns this energy to your genital awareness, and the hegemony of survival and material needs over your psyche.

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Finding, and losing, love

Finding, and losing, love

I find my soulmate, but a cyber lover causes a rift in our bond

Read the Soul’s Code exclusive series, Sins of my Faith

In Marina’s last episode she begins therapy with a psychologist and realizes that she’s become estranged from both her creative, and feminine sides.

BY MARINA GIULLIANI — After years of hopping from bed to bed I’d finally found a place where I felt truly comfortable.  I sealed my promiscuous past in a vault at the back of my head and jumped at the chance for a normal relationship.

Chris was the love of my life, and we were involved in a full time relationship from first sight. The product of a nasty alcoholic father, and a mother who made up for all his father’s evil deeds, Chris had more goodness than any human being I’d ever met.

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Aging

Post Secret enjoys the trickle-down of fame-shame

From John Edwards and Eliot Spitzer to Tiger Woods (add: the Celebrity Apprentice biker guy who married Sandra Bullock), celebs set the pace for public confessions

BY SOULS CODE — Do you have something that you’d like to unload but you can’t quite face saying to the people right around you?

In the world of the web, this is instantly possible  — and unlike the political and entertainment industry scandals, available to you under the cloak of anonymity.  PostSecret is an online, bulletin-board for people all over the English-speaking world who post their denied-lives by mailing a postcard to the webmaster.

The site has won a ton of buzz and traffic and a quick look tells you why.

The confessions are slogans splayed across home-made postcards that the authors mail anonymously.

An example from this week’s harvest of postcards (new ones are posted each Sunday):

“I wished I fathered a child before I came out.”

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Sara Miles’ radical conversion to a radical faith


Sara Miles’ conversion to Christianity not only opened her eyes to Christ, but opened the eyes of now fellow Christians

Sara Miles never expected to convert to a religion and worship a God she didn’t believe existed.  Strange as it may sound, but that’s conversion. Former atheist editor of Mother Jones magazine, Miles found herself mysteriously drawn to a mysterious God.

In an interview with David Ian Miller, Miles detailed her conversion beginning with receiving communion at an Episcopal Church. One day Miles spied St. Gregory of Nyssa Episcopal Church in San Francisco, attended a liturgy, and took communion.

Miles’ meditated on what she had received, what appeared as simple bread and wine, and how this sacred banquet was a reception of faith. And what’s equally interesting is the way Miles’ — a lesbian — challenges ‘traditional’ ideas about faith and identity in the midst of the schism in the Episcopal Church over the status of same-sex relationships.

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My first taste of control came in my grandfather’s lap

In the second part of a Soul’s Code exclusive from the book Sins of My Faith, Marina explains that what seems like denial is self-protection

BY MARINA GIULLIANI (read part one) : “It hit me like a cold slap. That’s when it all started!” I made the connection on a chilly February afternoon, but didn’t realize the impact it made on the last forty-four years until two days later.  I’d been in Vancouver, with my best friend of over twenty years, trying to get perspective on my life. We had shared a lot of memories, but this particular piece of my life story never surfaced until after I returned home.

“I never told you this before. . .” I stated bluntly in an e-mail conversation with her, “. . . because it was never a concern and because it wasn’t traumatic, but, when I was a little girl, my grandfather used to touch my genitals. I loved the way it felt, so I never thought much about it.”

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An Ash Wednesday confession: You are stardust

An Ash Wednesday confession: You are stardust

If happiness equals slimming-down the ego, the Imposition of Ashes on the first day of Lent is a powerful and public ritual of spiritual self-immolation

BY ANONYMOUS — I did confession (Ash Wednesday) and received the imposition of ashes. I’ve never felt so stripped naked in public as when I kneeled below the altar, and the priest made the sign of the cross on my forehead with ashes and said: “Remember that you are dust, and to dust you shall return” (or ‘stardust’, as I like to say…)

It was a shock to have the fact of my mortality announced so officially and openly. Truly humbling to realize this me is a fleeting illusion… It feels overwhelming when everyone else in the church is acknowledging their mortality, too, one by one.

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Ash Wednesday and the ghost in you

A ritual for Lent: make a daily list of what brings you joy, and what brings you closer to Spirit

No, we don’t mean our favorite song by the Psychedelic Furs, which was given a short second life a couple of years ago by the Adam Sandler-Drew Barrymore vehicle 50 First Dates.

But now that we brought it up, did you ever wonder where they got that phrase, ‘the ghost in you’? Check out Corinthians 6:19, one of the most famous passages in the Bible:

Know you not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost, who is in you, which you have from God, and you are not your own? . . . Therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God’s.

The passage points to the reason that people of a certain persuasion, starting tomorrow, give up pleasures of the flesh like coffee, sweets, alcohol or cigarettes. It’s a cleansing ritual that honors the temple of your body, and the Spirit which gave rise to it.

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