in my life, with a deep and abiding faith.

I have never questoned my faith, nor has it ever occured to me to question it. I have certainly had opportunity, and there is no doubt that I have embraced the Golden Calf, as they say, ankle and thigh and upper half, so to speak. None of what I have experienced, none of what I have lived, none of what I have done, have ever caused me to question my faith for a moment.

What I have questioned, over and over again, are beliefs.

I have questioned the beliefs that I was taught in Seminary, and rejected most of them out of hand. others, I abandoned later. beliefs are imposed predominantly on men by other men, and I reject the assumed divinity of men.

Certainly, men have contributed to the human condition, and there is no doubt that the likes of Moses, Abraham, Rambam, Plato, Socrates, Jefferson, Adams et al have had some good things to say, and did some good things. But they were human.

Humans err. It is in our nature. I am so far from perfect I am almost the anti-perfect. But I see good, I see when others do good things. And I appreciate them. But I do not base a system of beliefs on the teachings of a man- any man. I have a solid moral compass (Though I do not always follow a narrow, northernly path) and I understand the difference between right and wrong. So I can look at the “wisdom” of Twain or Kipling or Abraham or Buddha or Sun Tsu and know what is real and what is bullshit, most of the time.

Having a solid faith is a wonderful thing. Not being constrained by “beliefs” is another wonderful thing. In the first, I’m lucky- or as I said, blessed. In the second, I have had to work hard to avoid being trapped by beliefs, no matter how shiny and how sweet smelling. They invariably end up having feet of clay.