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The Infinite Ocean

I have a small scar on my hip, a little reminder: “You can’t toy with the ocean.”  I was body surfing in Laguna Beach, riding the big waves in, using my chest as if a surfboard.  I had a wonderful day.  What fun!  I wanted it to go on.  The waves seemed to be changing, as if to say, “Go in,” but I was greedy for one more ride.  I got that ride and then some.  A huge wave sped me towards shore, but it…

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Nude Sermon

Nude Sermon: Deeper than Shame is Glory Intro This sermon comes in response to Ashland’s recent ban on nudity in public places. Thanks to Eric Navickas and Carol Voisin for trying to defend nudity, difficult and edgy though that cause was. Eric’s reasoning and passion inspired me to contribute my art to this event. Thanks to Amy Godard for opening MAda Shell Gallery for nude art, music, and sermon. Though I came to Ashland in 1986 to be the first minister of the RVUUF (for…

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God’s Goods and the So-called Goods and Evils

God’s Goods is not primarily about God. God’s Goods is about the goods “God” “created” and called “good,” and it is about the violation of those goods by the three theistic religions. God’s Goods is not a Christian religion, nor even primarily theistic. It is a humanistic, naturalistic, deistic religious perspective that seeks to reconnect humanity to its natural origin, home, responsibilities, and possibilities. God, for Better or Worse Cultures generate god-images which then orient and guide those cultures. Humans may be seen as the…

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American Deism

Faith in the Larger Liberty:  American Deism Picture this: Our president in the White House takes scissors to Bible, cutting out of the New Testament all that makes Jesus more God than human. Out goes the virgin birth story, the miracles, even the resurrection. When preachers object, he calls them “soothsayers and necromancers.” To top it off, he is having an extended affair with his half-black servant, fathering children with her. Such a scandal would leave Fox News sputtering, unsure how to begin the spin.…

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Eat Well

First off, let’s admit we all need to eat something.  All living things take something in and let something out.  Whether through a cell membrane or a mouth and anus, we need to eat and expel to live.  There is no shame in that.   Even the sun eats and expels to exist.  We are made of the cooled matter of an old star explosion.  We are lighted, warmed, and powered by our current star, and we will be eaten by it farther in the…

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Eat Well

First off, let’s admit we all need to eat something.  All living things take something in and let something out.  Whether through a cell membrane or a mouth and anus, we need to eat and expel to live.  There is no shame in that.   Even the sun eats and expels to exist.  We are made of the cooled matter of an old star explosion.  We are lighted, warmed, and powered by our current star, and we will be eaten by it farther in the…

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From Dysfunctional to Funfunctional

It ain’t necessarily so, no it ain’t necessarily so. The things that you’re liable to read in the Bible It ain’t necessarily so.   Mathusala lived nine hundred years, yea, Mathusala lived nine hundred years. But who calls that livin’ when no gal will give in to No man what’s nine hundred years.   I’m glad to be in a religious tradition where both aspects of this naughty song can be sung in church: the Bible might not be true, and a sex joke.  Both…

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Autobiography of the Founder of God’s Goods

Who am I to found a religion catering to atheists, ecologists, libertines, humanists and believers?  Read on. I’m not one to feign piety or push fantastic beliefs.  Those who do – annoy me.  I’m largely humanistic (humans are free, fallible, and able), naturalistic (nature is dear; it is our origin and home), and deistic (the divine is found more through nature than scripture). God isn’t the mean inscrutable man most of the theistic religions believe in and brandish; God is the answer to What Is…

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America the Beautiful Because of Liberals and Conservatives

America the Beautiful Because of Liberals and Conservatives   An eagle soars high only on two wings. If such a grand bird were to use one of its wings against the other, it would be only crippled and crazy.  America is a bird divided against itself.  Instead of having a higher view, it flops and flounders on the ground.  Such a bird needs psychiatric help or prophetic warning.  That is my intent here today: I want to help America soar again. I see my beloved…

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Minor Mind Mending

Minor Mind Mending   An outgoing, uplifting stage personality killed herself recently.  Who would have suspected such a powerhouse of positivity would have such a dark side as to tragically die too early because of it?  Everyone was shocked.  Towards six hundred people attended her memorial service at our university in Ashland. I wanted to put her loss to the community’s gain and so joined an ad-hoc group.  We wanted somehow to help prevent suicides.  Quickly, we entered the difficult and overwhelming world of mental…

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