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Monasticism in Lockdown America: Part 4, Asceticism

By Chris HokeJune 7, 2018

Monks in the Orthodox tradition have long believed that God’s love is unchanging, constant, like the light of the sun. We do not need to appease a deity’s anger or perform well to turn the light of God’s affection and gaze upon us. It’s just there, divine mercy blazing away, pouring down all the time.…

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Cutting Away the Noise

By Shannon Huffman PolsonJune 6, 2018

Fifteen years ago, there was no end to the noise. It took a cutting to get me to silence. I worked twelve-hour days and longer in an aircraft hangar on a flight line of hundreds of helicopters with the cacophony of auxiliary power units, the collision of metal, and rotor blades beating the air outside,…

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Writing the Land and Its Story: An Interview with Paul Kingsnorth, Part 2

By Ragan SutterfieldJune 5, 2018

Paul Kingsnorth, an essayist and novelist who lives on a small homestead in Northern Ireland, joined me in a conversation yesterday about the need for silence and truth telling in the stories humans construct. We contine our exchange today. Ragan Sutterfield for Image: In the face of the environmental crisis, which you described yesterday as spiritual,…

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Writing the Land and Its Story: An Interview with Paul Kingsnorth, Part 1

By Ragan SutterfieldJune 4, 2018

“It’s the End of the World as We Know It…and He Feels Fine”—that’s how the New York Times Magazine titled a profile of the writer Paul Kingsnorth. Kingsnorth is an essayist and novelist, an Englishman who lives on a small homestead in Northern Ireland. With his deep concerns about what he called the “ecocide” of…

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Monasticism in Lockdown America: Part 3, Exercises

By Chris HokeMay 31, 2018

I recognized the Orthodox monks’ prostrations I’d learned in the monastery in the “burpees” the guys showed me after they were home from prison—exercising alongside them in their driveways and garages, my heart thumping in my throat and a sweat in my shirt sooner than I expected. The homies in their tight tank tops and…

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The Odyssey as Liturgy

By Peggy RosenthalMay 30, 2018

I happened to be in the midst of re-reading Homer’s Odyssey when the current issue of Image (#96) came in the mail. At the end of the issue are the rich reflections, by various poets, on poetry and worship. After sinking into them (even being drawn into deep prayer by Emmett Price’s powerful reflection on…

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Mother’s House

By Richard ChessMay 29, 2018

Mother’s house is not a house. Mother’s house is not a cave. Mother’s house is not a sacred text. Mother’s house is not an oven. Mother’s house is not a medicine cabinet. Mother’s house is not a song. Mother’s house is not a tree. Mother’s house is not an ocean. Mother’s house is not a…

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I Am Not a Mother: I’m a Human Being

By Tania RunyanMay 28, 2018

“You’re not a good mom!” My ten-year-old daughter shouted as she stomped up to her room. “Good moms don’t throw paper plates at their children!” Of course, this declamation can be proven false. A good mother would construct a Chinese kite out of a paper plate, toss it toward her daughter at the perfect moment…

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Poetry Friday: “Post-Miracle”

By Ashley WongMay 25, 2018

Ashley Wong’s poem “Post-Miracle” begins with empathy for the hard-hearted: “I understand now how the disciples could touch thousands / of pieces of bread with their hands and still not get it…” Without sentimentality, Wong describes the transience of a miracle and places us within this specific moment, the space after a miracle. The speaker…

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Poetry Friday: “Salt Wife”

By Amy McCannMay 18, 2018

Lot’s wife, or what’s left of her, stands in the barren wilderness outside Sodom waiting to trip up any who would skip merrily through the Old Testament, seeing God only as creator, provider, and oh-so-merciful father. It’s no wonder that so many poets—with their obnoxious preference for the prophetic—have invited her into their lines to…

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