FAITH: a system of religious belief


The sum and substance of the Christian faith is found in the story of Holy Week, the days between Palm Sunday and Easter Day.   Every year the Christian community practices that story, either in drama, reading, or liturgy. That is not commonly known to the many in the general public outside the Christian Community.  Over […]

CHANUKAH [KHAN-nuh-kuh]: Jewish celebration of Festival of Lights


I grew up in a small community with a limited number of Jewish residents.   Two of my best friends in school were Si and Mark, both of whom were Jewish.   The odds benefited me, it would seem.  I was the recipient of knowledge about Judaism that many of my friends never received.   I was fortunate. […]

KABBALAH [kab-UH-luh : a mystical method of interpreting Scripture by which initiates claimed to penetrate sacred mysterie


Let me begin with a disclaimer.   I know almost nothing about Kaballah. For several years, however, I have stumbled over the word in all kinds of places: newspaper articles, magazine articles, Facebook posts, television clips, and others.   It seems to be a word that it is assumed I should know about. All I can tell […]

BIBLIOMANCY [BIB-lee-oh-man-see]: the act of opening a book at random and seeking knowledge at random on the page revealed


People have been fascinated with the future for many centuries.  At some point in the past humans began to understand that there was such a thing as the future.  After all,it is a complex thought, and it took the human brain some level of development before such a complex idea could take shape. But once […]

THAUMATURGICAL [thaw-muh-TUR-jik-l] :a performer of miracles; magician


My good friend, Mac Ketchum, sent along this tongue-twister of a word which turns out to be really, really interesting.   Mac and his wife, Cathy, have been our best of friends for 60 years.   He is a retired executive who is the closest thing to a Renaissance man I have known.  He is a really […]

DIASPORA [dahy-AS-per-uh]: any group that has been dispersed outside its traditional homeland


I would imagine that for most of us we think of Jews when we hear the word diaspora.  It is a term which has a long and important history.   I went to to start my research, and found the clearest and most compact resume of the word’s history. “The history of the term diaspora […]