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An Inappropriate Conversation About My Religion

September 11, 2010

My soul brother Greg hosts a weekly podcast about faith, logic and life called Inappropriate Conversations. He’s a Christian, and a pretty devout one, and I like his show because he applies his faith to the real world in a way that allows for the concept of belief over reason, but at the same time doesn’t let that concept dictate stupidity. Koran-burning preacher, I’m talking to you.

I listen to IC despite being a non-Christian, because its sensibilities apply to real life regardless of which church you attend, if any.

So while I was thinking about Greg’s show, I came to that awful anniversary, September 10. That’s the day my 14-year-old son died, six years ago. It’s a day that always finds me struggling, doing my best to make it to September 11 (another fine anniversary) without losing my grip. This is not an easy task, but I usually manage.

Lately, crows have been occupying my field. Many crows. And this matters. Here, I will let my friend Angela explain it:

  • “Crows are the Messengers from the Creator and it is likely in your totem also as you are a journalist. Crows can also carry the spirits of our Ancestors or loved ones who passed on before us to bring messages to us from the Spirit World. If you listen carefully you can hear what the Crow has to say to you.”

Angela, like me, is a journalist. We have other things in common. For one, our ancestors were on this continent long before Europeans ever showed up. Our belief system doesn’t have a name, and I don’t like calling it a religion, because it goes beyond that. It’s a pure form of belief that shares a lot with my African forefathers, too, a belief that we, as human beings, know very little about the world beyond our vision. And while there may be something more in the spirit world around us, there are enough signs in the real world to let us know we are part of something bigger.

I am, at heart, a man of science. I like proof. I like evidence and fact. At the same time, I am not 100% convinced I am right in that approach. So that makes me a man of faith. But using “faith” to promote xenophobia, or hatred, or separatism, dismisses what faith means, and makes me a man of angry. This creates the conflict that fires my engines.

When I see signs the way I did today, when I make it through and move on, I tend to lean a certain way.

Faith’s something bigger than we can imagine, something that goes beyond what we can see, feel or hear. That’s the faith that gets me through the woods.

Earlier today, I walked into a secret council of crows in the forest, and they let me pass.

Inappropriate Conversations

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3 comments

  1. Faith is poetry used to describe fuzzy logic. But I still love you, Kennedy.


  2. I’m so sorry for your loss and the difficult anniversary you must fight through every year. I hope that the crows brought you some peace. It’s important for all of us to search for peace and faith in whatever form works.


  3. Thanks for including me in your process of handling difficult anniversaries this year. I noticed the date on Facebook, but I’m still figuring out “who I am” over there and thus didn’t reply.

    You know that my thoughts and prayers are with you. Know that your perspective is making a difference, too.
    While some are feeling the strong/valid but nonetheless abstract loss of 9/11 and others lash out in hatred over those events in shameful ways, you are dealing with genuine loss.
    Nothing abstract about that.



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