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Dr. Ross Bills, physician and medical school faculty member in Queanbeyan, New South Wales, Australia, weighs in on just what is most striking about humanity and why it bears salvation.
More correspondence from my physician friend in New South Wales; this time an interesting passage on monkeys …….
I missed this at the bottom of your email of the reference form:
Aaaah, sadly no. I plan to keep my faculties as long as I can.
But if they hassle you, warn them that I am the arch-heretic. I believe in self determination, in the sanctity of the individual’s choice, in the certainty of life after death, and in the inevitability of judgement for our sins, which may make the former three irrelevant. I believe in the basic goodness of all humans, regardless of faith, and that a Christian life may be lived outside the sacraments. Sadly I also believe there is evil afoot in the world, and my favourite example is the denial of unbaptised children the right to enter into the afterlife pure and unsullied as they were on this earth. I do not condemn homosexuality, or indeed heterosexuality, but I object strongly to sexual abuse. I do not decry violence for the right cause, but abhor violence committed for self gain, or it's own sake. If they hassle you warn them that I am in this world, and I will come for them with all my minions and likeminded fellows. Warn them my God is the God of the Old Testament, not the New, He is a vengeful and often unforgiving God, who will pass judgement on the acts of men, especially those who claim to act in His name.
And if that doesn't frighten them, it should.
Now, for Q3, not knowing where they are coming from, I have ticked don't know.
Have fun, Ross
Which only confirms that you are indeed the amazing human being I told you you were in one of my last emails. It is intensely comforting, I must confess, for a woman who grew up unprotected in a home of unreined-in males to be told that if anyone harasses her, you will come for them will all of your “minions and likeminded fellows.”
That one will be a comfort on many a cold night ........ as will your essay on charity .......
Love and blessings, a grateful Californian who learns at your feet,
I e-mailed OCU asking for a forwarding e-mail address, but they haven't responded. Best may be to sign your bits after you print it out, and send it on with a note advising they can contact me if they wish.
As I noted, I come from an academic facility with a tradition for heresy, or we prefer to say free will, and free thought. Christians and others who wear their religion on their sleeve are rarely believers. They are usually people who have themselves, or allowed other people, to take the Word and translate it into something far less. I am not a fundamentalist who believes the Bible is absolute, knowing full well that it too was the work of men. I have read the hidden gospels, and even as a young child wondered about twelve apostles leaving only four gospels. The Council of Nicaea effectively stole the right to credibility when they decided what would, and would not be part of the Bible. Even the Koran has variations, which is anathema to a true follower. As for the Rig Veda and possibly the Book of Mormon, much the same can be said. Monkeys tend to fiddle with things, and we are, at the end of it, supremely cunning monkeys.
And that answers your other question. We are also fascinating monkeys, and worth watching, caring for, and helping.
The other great tenet of my life has been service. Some might say duty, but duty removes to some extent, choice. I choose to practice random acts of kindness, to help, to listen, to work with the poor and rich alike, and at the end, to try and make a difference. A famous Australian actor, when he passed away had a simple inscription on his headstone: "He did very little harm." I suppose I would like that as a summing up. Sadly, to do little harm, you do have to work at it in these troubled times. It is not a lazy option. If you think you do not deserve my interest you are very wrong. All things interest me, and all people. (Or all monkeys if you prefer). However it needs to be understood that I class myself as just another monkey, who chooses to think not of himself, the tribe or the nation of monkeys, but all monkeys, would be monkeys and potential monkeys everywhere, and to try and do the things that are of benefit to all.
One person throwing a stone in a river is just thinking and passing the time. Many people, or many stones, can make an effective bridge or dam. It is about deciding to keep at it, and seeing what comes.
You must be an incredible physician. To think of your warm, loving, and supportive words paired with your healing art earnestly studied and rendered--you must be one hellified Monkey to whom other Monkeys come when they are ailing. I can't imagine that you don't have a following--said in the wonderful double negative we African Americans love.
Thank you for the comfort of your words, the blanket around my heart and consciousness--and soul--they provide.
Thank you also for reminding me of what I am for in this particular incarnation. That I too would like to lead others out of suffering and self-created prisons. That is why I began Blowing Up Barriers Enterprises.
I hope that your day dawns brightly as Sunday rounds the corner for you. I must remember that evening mass comes tonight though I have preferred attending mass on Sunday evening as opposed to Saturday evening. I tend to be of the old school that Saturday evening is for sinning and Sunday morning for repentance. Yet the closest Catholic church has only Spanish language mass on Sunday evenings darnit.
Be well and thank you for the reminder of our humanity, Monkeys all.
What a great med school instructor you must be!!!!!! Though a bit stern I would imagine. :-)
Love and blessings,
My favourite was a Polish language Funeral mass, for a patient, the mother of a good friend, who passed away after a series of strokes. I understood nothing, but the passion of the singing, even from the priest, the music, and the almost indescribable joy of a life well lived. Was there anything else to understand?
On 03/12/2011, at 7:46 PM, Dr. Niama L. Williams wrote:
Spanish language mass on Sunday evenings
A stern teacher. No. I try to encourage them to draw on strengths, to motivate, and to explain some of that essential humanity. I have had only one failure, by my standards, and I hope he will be caught further down in the net. Generally I teach adult entry, postgraduate medical students, who have already excelled in another area. My favourites were the former infantry officer, who had the knack of communication and command, and the veterinarian, who really only needed to learn to talk to the animals and expect them to talk back. They are all highly motivated, and like me so many years ago, just uncertain of themselves. (And probably a bit brighter than I was).
You'd probably not be surprised to hear I had been commended and awarded for my teaching. Not bad for the young layabout the Dean of Medicine used to hold up as a bad example to the other students. Indeed he once said if I appeared before him again I would NOT appear before him again. Then, to his surprise, but perhaps not mine...