Mind and Destiny

“I make no pretension to patriotism. So long as my voice can be heard ... I will hold up America to the lightning scorn of moral indignation. In doing this, I shall feel myself discharging the duty of a true patriot; for he is a lover of his country who rebukes and does not excuse its sins. It is righteousness that exalteth a nation while sin is a reproach to any people.”- Frederick Douglass

Location: Delhi, N.Y., United States

The author and his webmaster, summer of 1965.

Wednesday, December 07, 2016


Nobody is perfect and all of us have a tendency to make mistakes.  In every relationship, we should attempt to build trust by being truthful.  When another person is wronged, especially a spouse, a sincere “I’m sorry,” is always appreciated.  An apology isn’t a sign of weakness, it’s a sign of maturity. 

Families should make an effort to do things together.  Spouses should resist criticizing each other in front of their children, and in-laws.  Children benefit from parents that show a united front, when setting limits.  Parents should set good examples for their children.  Smoking, profanity, illegal drugs, drunk driving and telling racist, or vulgar jokes are poor examples.

Do as I say, not as I do is a pathetic motto.  The Golden Rule of treating others the way you’d like to be treated will achieves better results.  

Silence stops heated arguments until spouses can cool down.  Later, mature adults can calmly discuss their feelings, or concerns until a solution is reached.  Compromising isn’t a dirty word.

In order to learn from mistakes, we must admit mistakes to ourselves.  Nobody is infallible.  Most mistakes are minor, but some have serious consequences that can destroy our lives.  Our legal system can force us to pay a price.  However, usually our conscience requires that we live with the consequence of serious mistakes.  By committing ourselves to do better, we could lessen feelings of guilt.  

Once we admit that we aren’t perfect, and no longer expect perfection from others, we might begin feeling even greater affection for the person that we share a bedroom with.  This also applies to those that we share our planet with.

The lyrics of a song from the 1940’s concluded: “the greatest thing, that you’ll ever learn is just to love and be loved in return.”

The above letter to the editor of the Oneonta Daily Star was published on Dec. 31st.  That evening  I mentioned the letter being published at a memorable and beautiful wedding reception and a New Years Eve celebration.

Complete lyrics to "Nature Boy are as follows:

"There was a boy
A very strange enchanted boy
They say he wandered very far, very far
Over land and sea
A little shy and sad of eye
But very wise was he

"And then one day
A magic day he passed my way
And while we spoke of many things
Fools and kings
This he said to me
The greatest, that you’ll ever learn is just to love and be loved in return.”      


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