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The Mermaid Update

June 30, 2015
Much interesting response to the post last week about whether to wear the pin showing mermaid and merman in an intimate moment. A gentleman from Turkey contacted me privately with a thoughtful argument against wearing it: because things have more spiritual value if they are not public and available. I gave this some thought. He […] Read More

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What Would Dr Ruth Do?

June 24, 2015
A few years ago, I bought a pin at a street fair for a couple of bucks. It’s the image of a mermaid and a merman in heated embrace. I think it’s kinda cool — not too terribly tacky. Wouldn’t put it on my skirt suit lapel the day I announced for president; but still, […] Read More

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Spiritual Autobiography: Ooh La La?

June 16, 2015
When Dan Wakefield wrote his spiritual autobiography, Returning, the story began in panic and then took many surprising turns. Have a go at writing your own and discover the moments that have been formative in what you believe today. There may be surprises. In Dan Wakefield’s workshops on Writing Spiritual Autobiography, he makes the process […] Read More

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Redeeming Sex

June 5, 2015
Tantalizing title, since it can be read as sex-leading-to-redemption or the-restoring-of-value-to-sex. As it turns out Redeeming Sex, released in the last month, is mainly about how Christian churches need to value sexual diversity. This seems to me so thunderously obvious, simple, right, and long over-due that it was other bits and pieces of this hot-selling […] Read More

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More and More Books on Sex and Spirituality

May 29, 2015
New nonfiction about the intertwining of sex and spirituality seems to be coming out at an ever-increasing pace. And some of these books, I’m happy to see, are by religious leaders. Two of the writers who’ve been steady on the subject for a number of years are David Deida,, author of Finding God Through Sex […] Read More

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Self-Absorbed and Spiritually Seeking

May 19, 2015
Sometimes I get tired of myself. I start to feel that “I” am sealed in the Tupperware-like container of a “self” that is low-ceilinged and narrow. And here’s the worst of it: I fear I fit the damn Tupperware perfectly and don’t even feel especially guilty about being such a self-absorbed limited creature. However, I […] Read More

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News Mini-Post: Sex Change & Faith

May 11, 2015
A transgender woman’s struggle with and reliance on religion as she goes through the immense change. My new piece is up on Huffington Post. Please have a look (and feel free to Share). From Christine Connelly: “My entire family has shunned me. I’ve been dis-invited to Christmas, birthday celebrations and all family activities because I […] Read More

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Innocence, Purity, Sexual Experience

May 6, 2015
Loss of innocence is equated with first sexual experience by a multitude of cultures and generations. This is wrong. Innocence is lost when a person learns in a gut way that it’s possible for something important to go permanently irrevocably wrong. That can happen at any age. Certainly such a realization can come about through […] Read More

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Gender Identity: The Old-Fashioned Way(s)

April 30, 2015
People of different generations may view gender differently, it seems. My brother Franc Payne offered this charming gender identity account in a recent email: “QUICK UNCLE LUTHER STORY: Our whole family and Granna and Grandaddy were up visiting Taylor Pond on some holiday. We were sitting out on the screen porch …. As usual most […] Read More

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What Is Spiritual Sex?

April 22, 2015
The stereotype of sex and spirituality or “spiritual sex” is: candlelight, slow-motion, light-touch, quiet. Not that there’s anything wrong with that, but I’d like to widen the definition. Spiritual can also include vigorous. What makes sex spiritual is not the setting or the trappings or the special effects or lack of them. It’s breaking out […] Read More


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