Sunday, April 15, 2012

Giving Back

Most people, when they've been given good things, want to give something back. Such was it with me, with public libraries.

For years, these public institutions had been for me a source of enlightenment and uplift, especially the world-class Boston Public Library which I often frequented when we lived in Massachusetts. One day while doing some research in their magnificent Reading Room, the thought occurred, wouldn't it be nice if a book of mine could be on the shelf of some library to benefit patrons by bringing God into their thoughts and life. The realization of this aspiration was a long way off. But it did happen.

Our Master said, "Give, and it shall be given unto you; good measure, pressed down, and shaken together, and running over..." (Luke 6:38) Christ Jesus had it right. And as a testament to the way this eternal truth can work in one's life, and as an encouragement to others who yearn to bless their fellow beings, below are the foreign locations whose libraries have my various books in their permanent collections. This list shows just how far-reaching one's giving can be, to date, and in no particular order,

Liverpool, England
Pusan, Korea
Beijing, China
Riga, Latvia
San Juan, Puerto Rico
Macao, China
Port Adelaide, South Australia
Katowice, Poland
Ottawa, Canada
Noumea, New Caledonia
Nicosia, Cypress
Guadalajara, Mexico
Coatbridge, Scotland
Manchester, England
Ontario, Canada
Alexandria, Egypt
Lampeter, Wales
Stirling, Scotland
Dublin, Ireland
Inverclyde, Scotland
Bucharest, Romania
Paisley, Scotland
Beirut, Lebanon
Budapest, Hungary
Valletta, Malta
Blackburn, Scotland
Thessalonika, Greece
Glasgow, Scotland
Orkney, Scotland
London, England
Okinawa, Japan
Bangor, Northern Ireland
Manilla, the Philippines
Lisbon, Portugal
Monkton, Scotland
Addis Ababa, Ethiopia
Newfoundland and Labrador, Canada
Edinburgh, Scotland
Dublane, Scotland
Paris, France
Newcastle, Australia
Fort Saskatchewan, Canada
Renfrew, Scotland
Zurich, Switzerland
Inverness, Scotland
Isle of Man
Lyon, France
Clydebank, Scotland
Ceredigion, Wales
East Kilbridge, Scotland
Hagatna, Guam
Harrow, England
Osaka, Japan
Leicester, England
Kilmarnock, Scotland
Toyko, Japan
Radyr, Wales
Seoul, Korea
Rekyavik, Iceland
Cardiff, Wales
Aberdeen, Scotland
Hong Kong, China
Devon, England
Dumbarton, Scotland
Bogota, Colombia
Raratonga, Cook Islands
Islamabad, Pakistan
Tbilisi, Republic of Georgia
Windhoek, Namibia, Africa
Limerick, Ireland
Dundee, Scotland
Bridgetown, Barbados
Nanjing, China
Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
Shanghai, China
Santiago, Chile
Copenhagen, Denmark
Canberra, Australia
Kintillock, Scotland
Warsaw, Poland
Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Buenos Aires, Argentina
Cymru, Wales
Nagasaki, Japan
Dorado, Puerto Rico
Aberystwyth, Wales
Faduz, Liechtenstein
Barcelona, Spain
Stourbridge, England
Cork City, Ireland
Yerevan, Armenia
Dunedin, New Zealand
Clackmanshire, Scotland
Sao Paulo, Brazil
Blagoevgrad, Bulgaria
Wellington, New Zealand
Reims, France
Luton, England
Hamilton, Scotland
Hiroshima, Japan
Regina, Canada
Thimpu, Bhutan
Hamilton, New Zealand
Ballerup, Denmark
Rotterdam, the Netherlands
Tallin, Estonia
Colombo, Sri Lanka
Grenada, West Indies
Halifax, Nova Scotia
Geelong, Australia
Panji, Goa
Aiktenvale, Queensland, Australia
Wenjian, China
Vaughn, Ontario, Canada
Lanarkshire, Scotland
Vienna, Austria
Livingston, Scotland
Swansea, Wales
Chennai, India
Selkirk, Scottish Borders
Galway, Ireland
Hangzhou, China
Dumferline, Scotland
Kiev, Ukraine
Limassol, Cypress
Malmo, Sweden
Abroath, Scotland
Ayr, Scotland
Llandysul, Wales
Belfast, Northern Ireland
Nara, Japan
Thunder Bay, Ontario, Canada
Tauranga, New Zealand
Greater Sudbury, Ontario, Canada
Brasov, Romania
Vilnius, Lithuania
St. Andrews, Scotland
Hastings, New Zealand
Kobenhaven, Denmark
Brisbane, Australia
Minsk, Belarus
Moscow, Russia
Trieste, Italy
Swaziland, Africa
Prague, Czechoslovakia
St. Thomas, US Virgin Islands
Malawi, Africa
Victoria, the Seychelles
Tirana, Albania
Bearsden, Scotland
Aberdeenshire, Scotland
Floriana, Malta
Falkirk, Scotland
Birmingham, England
Gateshead, England
Suva, Fiji Islands
Milan, Italy
Naples, Italy
Majuro, Marshall Islands
Verona, Italy
Chisinau, Moldova
Kirkcaldy, Scotland
Medellin, Colombia
San Jose, Costa Rica
The Hague, the Netherlands
Erskine, Scotland
Lautoka, Fiji Islands
Nairoba, Kenya, Africa
Rio Piedras, Puerto Rico
Gurabo, Puerto Rico
Penang, Malaysia
San Fernando, Trinidad
Roseau, Dominica
Wanniassa, Canberra, Australia
Alloa, Scotland
Maribor, Slovenia
Lalitpur, Nepal
Rota, Mariana Islands
Quezon City, the Philippines
Llubljana, Slovenia
Rose-hill, Mauritius
Brno, Czech Republic
Pilsen, Czech Republic
Ostrava, Czech Republic
Rome, Italy
Coimbra, Portugal
Launceston, Tasmania
Stockholm, Sweden
Lisburn, Northern Ireland
Georgetown, Guyana
Dkaha, Bangladesh
Sofia, Bulgaria
Poznan, Poland
Helsinki, Finland
Umea, Sweden
Cains, Australia
Sofia, Bulgaria
Harrow, England
Dundalk, Ireland
Merthyr Tydfil, Wales
Durban, South Africa
Mackay, Australia
Pietermaritzburg, South Africa
Kerry, Ireland
Nambur, Australia
Coventry, England
Palmerston North, New Zealand
Dhaka, Bangladesh

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Help for a friend

Had an interesting experience early this morning as I was having breakfast at my favorite spot.  Curtis, who often waits on me and is a special acquaintance, happened to say, "I don't feel so well right now.  If I pass out, just pick me up", he said to us.  I said, "Oh, I'm sure it's nothing serious."

But as I sat there outside in the lovely air, reading from Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures by Mary Baker Eddy (I often take something with me to read), decided to review the definition of "man" found on page 475.  It reads in part, "Man is not matter; he is not made up of brain, blood, bones, and other material elements.  The Scriptures inform us that man is made in the image and likeness of God.  Matter is not that likeness.  The likeness of Spirit cannot be so unlike Spirit.  Man is spiritual and perfect; and because he is spiritual and perfect, he must be so understood in Christian Science.  Man is idea, the image, of Love; he is not physique."

"And further on, 'And God said:  Let us make man in our image, after our likeness; and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth.'"

These truths of man's true selfhood as God's creation, His reflection, have come to my aid many times in my life.  And although Curtis didn't ask me for specific metaphysical treatment, I feel my thinking generally about what man truly is was a help to him.  As I left, he said, "Those pains disappeared, just like that."  Whether or not it was what I was thinking about that brought about this result, I can't say.  But I like to think it helped.

Wednesday, April 11, 2012


Wherever we go,

angels go.

Wherever we are,

angels are.

Yes, it's true.

God sees to this.

Angels looked after Jesus,

and they look after

me and you.

"For he shall give his angels charge over thee,
 to keep thee in all thy ways."
(Psalms 91)

Friday, April 6, 2012

Good news for you

You've done bad things;

You were seduced by the world,

And are sorry you let yourself be.

But don't despair:

It's not too late for you.

You can begin again,

Wipe the slate clean.

Say to God right now,

And in your heart mean,

From this time on

I intend to live my life

To honor Your Holy Son.

And look what awaits you:

"If any man be in Christ,

He is a new creature."

(II Cor. 5:17)

"Any" man, the Bible says.

And that my friend --

Now right with God --

Covers you.

And this, to cheer your heart:

"Tireless Being, patient of man's procrastination,
affords him fresh opportunities every hour;"

Mary Baker Eddy in Christian Healing, p. 19

Sunday, April 1, 2012

Among the Few

One can scarcely read The Wall Street Journal these days without coming upon someone who pursued what the world has to offer to the point of fraud, theft, corruption. And consequent disgrace and imprisonment. Thinking about what walking the broad way of worldliness can do to someone, not to mention their families , can't help but reflect on the teachings of Christ Jesus vis-a-vis the 2 paths that are open to us in this life:  the one that leads to destruction, and the other that seems to many to be difficult and un-appetizing to take, but that leads to all that is worth having -- now and eternally.

In the words of our Master, "Enter ye in at the strait gate; for wide is the gate, and broad is the way, that leadeth to destruction, and many there be that go in thereat;
Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it."  This is from the New Testament, as many of you will recognize.

Jesus isn't saying that one is doomed if he has chosen unwisely, just that there seem to be few willing to exercise the self-denial it takes to choose the better way.  One should make every effort to ensure that he is among "the few".

To not be willing to do this shows neither moral strength nor greatness of character.

Our Ally

Our God is for us.
This we know,
This we know from
His beloved Son.
For if God were not,
Life would do us in--
In many ways,
And more times than one.

But God be thanked,
Without His loving help,
We simply cannot be.