All posts by Chuck Fager

Mysticism, Schmysticism; Quakers, Pay Attention!

Horton-clr
Scott Horton

There was an amazing post yesterday on the pitfalls of “mysticism” and pop occultism, by the always enlightening human rights attorney Scott Horton. It’s on his always worthwhile “No Comment” blog at the Harpers magazine site.

It makes points that ought to give many Quaker aficionados of that “mystic” path pause, an occasion to take off their fog-tinted spectacles and see the phenomenon more plainly in the light of history and social context.
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AFSC’s Next Boss: You Heard It here First

Clinton pettus
Clinton Pettus

The American Friends Service Committee will soon be picking its new General Secretary. On its website, the date for submitting resumes is late in March. Presumably it will be a few months after that before a final selection is announced. My guess would be they’d want to make it in time for summer, so the new person could make a grand tour of yearly meetings and the FGC Gathering, to be introduced to Friends at large.

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Rant: Complaining About Fancy-Schmancy Quaker Schools

So here it comes again: on another list, a complaint about expensive Quaker schools. Are they really “Quaker”? Don’t they sow division in meetings? Don’t they perpetuate all kinds of bad class stuff??

For the record, I never worked at one of the fancy Quaker schools; but I was briefly on the “faculty” of the fledgling (and now gone) Friends World College some 45 years ago, where I earned room, board and all the luxury a couple hundred bucks a month could buy.

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Buddy, Can You Spare A Few Million Shillings? A Kenya Fraud Update & Request

Kenyan 100 shilling noteSeems to me it’s time for an open update for American and other Friends on the struggle against theft and corruption in Quaker institutions and programs in Kenya. This question has been growing on me in recent months, but I figured maybe there had been one and I missed it. But it was brought back to mind by some recent news reports.

Did anybody else see these BBC stories?

Continue reading Buddy, Can You Spare A Few Million Shillings? A Kenya Fraud Update & Request

A Single Lonesome Daffodil

The Daffodils Are Comin'!

This single lonesome Daffodil is blooming in our backyard, amid the rain and facing a freezing night.
It moves me to verse –
With apologies to His Eminence, Leonard Cohen:

They’re comin’ from a hole in the ground
We’ve waited months for them to be around
I know that you may feel
That this ain’t exactly real,
‘But it’s real,
It just ain’t exactly there.
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Enough With the Anti-Institutional Sloganeering: A Divergent Friend Speaks

I’m increasingly troubled by the repetition of anti-institutional slogans in what is sometimes called “emergent” Quaker circles and conversations. Much of this, in my reading, consists of about one per cent of insight, that’s being puffed up like a bit of rubber into a big-looking balloon of empty hot air.

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