Being Present (Somehow)

1. Do not avoid contact with suffering or close your eyes before suffering.  Do not lose awareness of the existence of suffering in the life of the world.  Find ways to be with those who…

Pursue Knowledge Even to China

The Content of Character: Ethical Sayings of the Prophet MuhammadCollected by Shaykh Al-Amin Mazrui Sarah Ali gave me this book as an expression of gratitude for writing her  a letter of recommendation.  We will discuss…

Righteous, Remorseful Jews

As my 61st birthday approaches, I’ve noticed that I have recently been going back to authors and works I read many years ago.  For example, I’ve been reading Thomas Merton’s Asian Journal, William D. Miller’s…

“I Remember” by Loran Aladdin

Loran wrote the following for my Humanities 101 class at Maryville University this past spring semester. _______________________ I remember a lifetime of feeling as though I should refrain from being proud of my identity. I…

This, That, and the Other

1. An excerpt from my 2015 novel, Dear Layla/Welcome to Palestine: Corporate Citizen/1 (Products/2) Some things changed and some didn’t on September 11 It shocked and angered us To see products we had built to…

Leaving No Room

The Wisdom of the Arabs Compiled by Sheila Bushrui Oneworld Publications, 2002 Recently, friends and I have been reading and discussing the wisdom of the Stoics as well as St. Francis and His Companions. I…

Activists

Hatred/2 by Hedy Epstein Throughout the 1960s, I became involved in local civil and human rights activities, as well as anti-Vietnam war protests. In the spring of 1970, it became public knowledge in the United…

An Actor

Sealing the Deal A couple of months after The Book of Mev came out, I did a reading and signing at at Left Bank Books in Saint Louis’s Central West End. I asked one of…