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Editor's Box | Digest: Articles 11 through 20 in 2010

March 12 through May 14. Catch up on any of the articles you've missed! Ranging from guiding children on a hike to establishing the thought work of a New Church ethic of land usage, our authors share thoughts on a wide variety of topics.

March 12, 2010
“Clothing” by Malcolm Smith.
What do clothes say about who you are? Is it reliable? What's up with angel's clothing? What about envying or desiring nice clothes? Malcolm tackles some of the spiritual ideas behind one of our three basic necessities: clothing.

March 19, 2010
“The Culture of Heaven: An Explication of the Wine-making Process as Corresponding to Spiritual Reformation and Rebirth” by Johanan Odhner.
Johanan likes to think about the process of making wine. He shares ideas ranging from the factual process of fermenting grape juice to its spiritual implications and meanings. This article delightfully balances the tangible and the philosophical as it unpacks one of the key spiritual images in the Word.

March 26, 2010
“The Real Reason Jesus is an Inspiration” by Todd Beiswenger.
Todd takes a fresh look at Jesus as a role model. Even if we can't personally live up to His example, we can be blown away by His commitment and love. Todd takes us through the real meaning of Jesus' actions and shows us the amazing inspiration to be had from contemplating His example.

April 2, 2010
“A Parable for the Future” by Dylan Hendricks.
It's difficult to summarize what Dylan does in this piece. You should probably just read it. The whole thing has the tone of challenge and asks New Church people to expand their thinking, to not assume that they are entitled, and to expect the manifestation of the Lord's presence on earth to keep evolving and out pacing any of our own expectations. He also promises us a sequel.

January 29, 2010
“Feeling Complete” by Janine Smith.
Janine draws on practical examples and passages from the Word to illustrate her quest for peacefulness. She paints an all-too-familiar picture of the obsessive energy of trying to get everything right before the peace and enjoyment in life can be experienced. Is she trying too hard? Is she not trying hard enough? Janine asks herself, she asks the Lord in His Word and the reader is challenged to look at the same questions.

April 16 – April 21, 2010
“Land Ethic” by Edmund Brown.
Posted in 6 sections starting on April 1st, Edmund shares an essay originally written as part of his undergraduate degree. In Land Ethic Edmund does two things. A) He makes the case that the New Church needs to develop clear thinking as a basis for environmental decisions in order to contribute to the broader conversation. B) He begins this process by leading the reader through other philosophical approaches to land ethics and ends by offering the beginning of a uniquely New Church answer to the challenging issues which arise around land use in a world of limited environmental resources.

April 23, 2010
“There is No Such Thing as Just Friends” by Jennica Nobre.
In this challenging essay, Jennica directly confronts the idea that there can be close, merely platonic friendship between men and women (outside of family relations). Jennica draws on the work of Dave Carder to make her case that infatuation needs to be seen for what it is in order to protect marriages from infidelity.

April 30, 2010
“Practice” by Normandy Alden.
Normandy is a ceramic artist and she shares her love and insight found in working with clay. She delights in the spiritual discipline of committing to the task in her hands. She offers some photos as proof.

May 7, 2010
“The Hidden Influence and Relevance of Swedenborg 1: Why We are Alive” by Curtis Childs.
This week introduces the first of three sections of an essay by Curtis which explores the impact of Swedenborg's theological writings. Curtis begins here by looking, from a broad context, at the remarkable contribution Swedenborg made to teachings about the life after death. Curtis draws connections between the reports of near-death experiences (often brief) and the extended journeys of Swedenborg in the spiritual world.

May 14, 2010
“Skinned Knees and Hurt Feelings Build Character” by Chad Odhner.
One of the things Chad does is raise children. Here he shares an anecdote of hiking up a mountain with his kids. Through analogy, and reference to the work Divine Providence, Chad explores ideas about the Divine perspective when caring for His Human children. This essay comes across as humorous and light-hearted while conveying satisfyingly grounded philosophical conclusions.

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