Golden Rule & Government Workshop

Inspiring weekend in Champaign, Illinois leading a workshop on whether the Golden Rule should be applied to government and taking part in other sessions at Illinois Interfaith Conference 2015, as well as serving as a mentor for a University of Illinois leadership development program. I couldn’t be more encouraged by the quality of the students and inspired by fellow presenters and mentors. I only wish I could have spent more time at the Interfaith conference, and had more one-on-one time with many of the students, presenters and alums.

Special thanks to three students who helped me escape my deeply snowed-in parking space Sunday afternoon.

If Life Brings Lemons, Create a Fun Calendar

Mike is in the blue shirt, second from the right. Paula is leaning forward in front.

Even 18 months later, a tear wells up as Mike Pisarcik mentions his little girl settling too far away to reach quickly. For Mike and his wife Paula, the summer of 2013 brought dramatic change. Their son married, locating 40 miles away in downtown … [Continue reading]

Understanding Islam and Charlie Hebdo

As I studied Islam over the past two years, trying to understand the dichotomy between my personal experience with peaceful, thoughtful Muslims and the brutal, hateful violence pursued by radical Islamist terrorists, I learned why silent acquiescence … [Continue reading]

Trilogy Complete: Doing Unto Others

Front cover for Doing Unto Others: The Golden Rule Revolution

Interested in challenging your thinking while reading compelling stories of atonement, recovery, retribution and inspirational leadership? After decades of increasing division, America embraces a path toward unity behind the sole principle common to … [Continue reading]

Six Actions We Can Each Take to Build Unity

As a four-year-old in 1968, I sent my mother into sheer panic at a local McDonald’s when I loudly asked the large man next to her why he only washed the inside of his hands. Amidst the race riots of that tumultuous year, the African American … [Continue reading]

With Family Afar, Thankful for An Unlikely Friendship

Jim Bowen with Aunt Annette

From a distance, the 350 pounds Jim Bowen packs into his thick, muscular frame appear menacing. A shaved skull and elongated Van Dyke beard edged with the first trimmings of grey only add to the suggestion that he must be a bouncer at an edgy Daytona … [Continue reading]

When Pasties Appear on Guys’ Weekend

Launching over Volkswagen Rock in Piers Gorge with best friends Dave Steel (front left), me (front right), Mike Collins (middle right) and guide Forrest Smith on the Wild Ride.

Staring at the pasties we caressed in our hands, we weren't sure what to do next. Do we envelop them in our mouths, wrapping our lips as far around as possible? Is it better to nibble at the edge while maintaining a firm handhold? For the rest … [Continue reading]

MSNBC’s Matthews Frets On U.S. Language Segregation

At the conclusion of his MSNBC Hardball show tonight, host Chris Matthews recognized the problem of America's growing language segregation. Speaking in context of Scotland's secession vote today, Matthews said he worries "occasionally where we are … [Continue reading]

Scotland Secession: Warning for U.S.?

Just a few months ago, political pundits treated tomorrow’s secession vote in Scotland as no more than a passing nuisance. After 307 years together, Scotland and England are so intertwined that most firmly believed Scots would overwhelmingly vote … [Continue reading]

Leaving NYC Without My Wife

Manhattan skyline

Sweat dripped onto my glasses as my wrenched right arm stretched up the bottom of one sofa section, holding a nut in place while my left arm extended to twist an ingeniously minimalist tool. Pains reached every muscle when I earlier passed the … [Continue reading]