Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Spring Weirdness

We have in fact had two days of spring: Sunday and Monday were warm enough to work in the garden in a T-shirt. The winter blahs disappeared; there was a sense of energy and purpose as bulbs burst into bloom and the buds on the pear tree swelled almost to flowering.

Now, of course, we are back to cloud and drizzle and it is said that it will turn cold again towards the end of the week. There's an old joke in England that I also heard in Alaska: "When will it be spring?" "We've had spring—the two days of warmth in March."

In the meantime pushing to have my book ready for the editor by Easter, which has produced the realisation that I am gradually forgetting American spelling and syntax.

But this is trivia compared to the two events dominating the news: Russia's invasion of Ukraine, and the Crimea's vote to return to the Russian fold (one might perhaps better say the iron fist)—which, in my view, is short-sighted. I have always felt that Putin's long-term goal is to re-establish the Soviet Union both in terms of territory and the rule by terror. Is the invasion of Ukraine the first step in that direction? It makes all the Russian good will toward the winter Olympics and paralympics seem very hollow and cynical indeed.

The other big news story, of course, is the loss of the Malaysian airliner. How is it possible to 'lose' without a trace a 777 with more than 200 passengers and crew? The Russian invasion was almost predictable; this latter event was not. A thousand questions swirl in the back of my mind: why are you not looking in the piracy capital of the world, the Horn of Africa? If the plane flew for seven hours, did it have time to fly that far? If it flew for seven hours, then the intention, at least, was not to ditch. If the southern Indian ocean is one of the suspect areas, then it would seem that the idea of the Horn of Africa is not so far-fetched. What country would risk receiving a hijacked airliner? What has happened to the innocent passengers? There is nothing original in these questions but they bother me. I feel, as I suspect many other feel, as if a hole has opened up in reality, which has swallowed this airplane and who knows what next? Very unsettling. Very. 

Pray for them all.


Anonymous Joel Watson said...


Just these moments thinking of you, ocf course, as I wrote on Facebook

Several have asked what I am reading. I always have about five or six going, because at this stage in life all of them seem connected, as if a conspiracy....
I just finished:
1. The Highest Poverty: Monastic Rules and Form-of-Life (Meridian: Crossing Aesthetics) by Giorgio Agamben, first time [Life Changing for my thought] (an anonymous gift)
2. The Structure of Scientific Revolutions, Volume II, Number 2 (Second Edition, Enlarged) by Thomas Kuhn, S., this is the fourth time I have read this for the "first" time! Love it!
3. Opus Dei: An Archaeology of Duty (Meridian: Crossing Aesthetics) by Giorgio Agamben, first time, (an anonymous gift)
4. God Without Being: Hors-Texte (Religion and Postmodernism Series) by Jean-Luc Marion, third time
5. God As The Mystery Of The World: On the Foundation of the Theology of the Crucified One in the Dispute between Theism and Atheism by Eberhard Jungel, third time
Presently reading:
1. God for Us: The Trinity and Christian Life by Catherine Mowry LaCugna----- When I am Pope, ALL Christians will be required to read this, once a year!
2. The Shattering Sound of Amazing Grace: Disquieting Tales from Saint John's Gospel by David J. Schlafer, just got t=his today, a gift from a long time good friend who knows the author and knows me!
3. Revelations of Divine Love by Julian of Norwich,, I have been constantly reading this over and over, cover to cover now for over 30 years, seemingliy "for the first time"
4. Easter, Its Story and Meaning by Alan W. Watts, read it many times, as I do every Lent
5. The Week of Salvation: History and Traditions of Holy Week by James Monti, this is a first time read for Lent this year
6. The Concept of Mystery in Catholic Susan Campbell Church, by Karl Rahner. Just started it for a second time this month this week (Hard, but!)
7. Living in Mystery by Ruth Burrows (who i am going to marry in the next life [she doesn't know it however) along with Simone Weil, and Juliana of Norwich and of course Margaret!
8. Jesus of Nazareth: What He Wanted, Who He Was by Gerhard Lohfink, a gift of a long long time friend and brother. Just finishing it up today probably!
9. The Meaning of Tradition by Yves Congar, second time of reading
10. Real Presence: The Work of Eucharist by Nathan Mitchell, second time of reading. I will read ANYTHING Nathan Mitchell writes!!!
11. And as usual, fiddling with constantly, An Anglo-Saxon Reader by James W. Bright. I wish I were a 100th as good in AS as I am in Greek. Right now, I am just fiddling...
Most of the above book began with Maggie Ross, a Solitary friend of ours, suggesting Margaret read Margaret Barker's Temple Theology. This was like a time bomb waiting and I have had to rethink ALL of my thought because of that one book (which got me to thinking about and hence reading again for the first time number 2. above, The Structure of Scientific Revolutions), and that of course had lots of footnotes which led to many of the above and their footnotes lead to etc., etc., etc.
What are you reading???????

Knowing you and reading Sister Ruth Burrows (are you friends??? I hope so!!!) are costing a lot of money!!! Worth every penny of it! Sheer JOY! Bless you.

9:24 pm, March 18, 2014  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi Maggie,
Thought you might enjoy the following quote I found in my local newspaper the other day. It is from the Canadian writer, Margaret Atwood... " In the Spring at the end of the day, you should smell like dirt."

3:56 pm, March 23, 2014  
Blogger Maggie Ross said...

It came through, Susan

5:44 pm, March 30, 2014  

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