A Gift of Meaning by Bill Tammeus

By Bill Tammeus

Because of the unusual temporary nature of journalism, no longer each column can stand the attempt of time. yet many—even these approximately occasions approximately long gone from the general public consciousness--contain lasting truths. A present of Meaning is a set of these lasting truths from invoice Tammeus, a columnist for the Kansas urban Star.

Each piece unearths Tammeus's try to strive against everlasting that means from the occasions and stories that sweep us alongside day by way of day.

I stopped by way of a homeless look after the opposite day to determine anyone i do know. As I waited, I felt relatively conspicuous in my go well with and tie. in truth, the pleasant guy on the info table requested me if i used to be a pastor. I chuckled.

But as I sat within the foyer ready to work out the guy I got here to examine on, i used to be struck back by means of what could be the so much tricky of all human initiatives: empathy. that's, the problem of truly placing ourselves within the sneakers of others.

In the tip, A present of Meaning isn't just a presentation of chanced on which means, but additionally a choice to readers to prevent and imagine for themselves. This e-book is a call for participation to respire deeply and hunt down the which means of what the realm heaves at us on a daily basis. it truly is an delivering of insights that might supply clean methods of comprehending issues readers idea they already understood.

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Sample text

Nor am I downplaying the way, at our best, we have given hope to a world whose people have fled to our shores to escape the poverty, oppression, and rape of their own lands. But I am saying that when we entangle the historical role we’ve often played—promoter of liberty, advocate of human dignity—with a theology declaring America God’s designated hitter, we risk the sin of misplaced pride. Beyond that we are likely to attract the kind 40 A Gift of Meaning of mistrust of our actions that we regularly see in people around the world.

Indeed, the church’s arrogant refusal to affirm any truth in Galilean cosmology was one more futile attempt to imprison a truth it couldn’t control. Another example: Parts of the nineteenth-century American church declared slavery biblically defensible. This kind of thinking—rooted in a reverence for power and wealth, not in respect for human worth—also was reflected in our era in the now-abandoned Dutch Reformed Church’s pro-apartheid position in South Africa. At times, of course, religion’s countercultural ways can help correct a run-amok culture.

What is it about the Bible that leads me to collect dozens of translations or that caused Quayle to acquire a first edition of the lyrical King James Version? The place of sacred texts in history is long, central, and complex. Almost every religion has writings it considers hallowed, though naturally those faiths understand the origin, meaning, and purposes of them in different ways. In Judaism and Christianity, the scriptures have always held a central and formative role. For Jews, not only do the Hebrew scriptures contain a history of the people, but also, more to the point, 44 A Gift of Meaning they tell the story of their relationship to God, and they present to the people God’s requirements for living in relationship with each other, with others, and with their creator.

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