Tag: resilience

Running Out of Gas (in More Ways Than One)


In the corner of my kitchen, I have an Easter lily that always tells me when it’s thirsty: it droops. And when I get busy, I don’t always give it the attention it needs. But when its leaves touch the floor, I hurry for the fertilizer water and give it a good douse. Within an hour or two, it springs up and lives to see another day.

Lately, I’ve been wishing that I had a treatment that would benefit me in the same way as I provide to my lily. I feel beaten and beleaguered by the onslaught of bad news about the Biden administration and how it is mismanaging our country. I may be projecting my feelings on my friends here at Ricochet, but I don’t think I’m alone in my reactions. In one way or another, I think many of us are feeling bruised and discouraged by the news; that attitude shows up in posts and comments.

In the last 18 months, I’ve swung from the mindset of bitter and hopeless, to resting in the comfort of detachment. As a person who tries to be realistic and resilient with a sprinkling of optimism, I’ve experienced my usual equanimity to be slowly eroding.

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When we are in the midst of struggle, whether it is personal, or if we are watching family and friends at a loss, or the world is in chaos, it’s always a good plan to expose ourselves to a brighter world, one that demonstrates beauty, creativity and inspiration. Over the years I have been blessed […]

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Courage, Resilience, and Irreverence


Recently I had the incredible opportunity to hear the ideas of five brilliant men of our time, who are determined to save our country. The event was sponsored by Hillsdale College and held in Naples, FL, and the selection of speakers were voices that every American needs to hear.

The two-day seminar began with Governor Ron DeSantis. I knew it would be akin to a campaign speech, but it was much, much more. He was relentless in criticizing the powers-that-be, and determined to restore the freedoms of Floridians. I was especially impressed with his overall energy. Some people believe that he doesn’t demonstrate the rhetorical power of others in the political realm. But DeSantis was on fire that night. It wasn’t just his words, but his manner told everyone that he was in for the fight and would not give it up. Answering questions from Dr. Larry Arnn, President of Hillsdale College, he made it clear that the vicious and malicious attacks were not going to stop him. When asked what we all needed to do to fight back, he forcefully stated, “Stand up and speak out!” We can no longer ignore or hide from the inroads of the Left. They must be stopped at every opportunity. This past week, DeSantis was looking at legislation that would prevent sexual orientation and gender identity from being taught in the schools. And he’s not finished.

Who’s Winning? Who’s Losing?


For those people who thought there’d be no civil war in this country, I think they’ve been proven wrong. We aren’t fighting with arms, but the discourse is as brutal and vicious as I’ve ever seen. Every day there is a new report of the skirmishes that have taken place, of the people whose lives are being destroyed, or of the reputations that have been wounded. It’s difficult to describe this time in our country as anything but a war.

As we watch new battles erupt, I find myself trying to assess the status of the two sides. When I look at the Left, I see our schools being captured by an insidious curriculum. The project is spearheaded primarily in private schools by NAIS. This WSJ article reveals the true nature of NAIS indoctrination that is embedded in every school subject.

This organization is operating with impunity and threatens our public sector schools by trying to bring this dogma to all schools.

Group Writing: A Tirade on Hate


Hate is like a blood-sucking leech; it attaches to your psyche without your even noticing it. Over time, it draws the energy from your life, mostly in the background. If you don’t pay attention to it, it can suck every ounce of joy right out of you.

I’m about to let hate ruin my life. I don’t seem to be able to help myself. If I acknowledge its presence and drive this hate out of my heart and mind, maybe there’s hope. So here goes…

Small, Inspiring Victories


So many of us are feeling the fatigue of fighting for our country every day. The destructive and mindless decisions are endless. I became acutely aware of how worn out I am by reading David Foster’s latest post. I realized that my condition is so difficult to endure because it is wearing on me mentally, emotionally and physically: I find myself continually analyzing the predicaments our country is engaged in; the distress of that reality intensifies with each ugly news story; and the result of both the emotional and mental upset is a weariness that I work hard to shake. Even with exercise, proper diet and prayer, the state of our country is taking its toll on me.

But I had an idea that I think can help all of us: frequently identifying small victories. I use the word frequently because I do believe that we are seeing protests, rebellions and revelations that tell us that although we are in a serious struggle, little by little the country is at least waking up and noticing the many ways that the Leftist elite has compromised our cherished and honorable way of life. And ordinary citizens aren’t happy.

What a 2,000-Year-Old Story Can Teach America


Every month I’ve been leading a group on Zoom to discuss some aspect of Judaism that we all may not know much about. Although some of my research describes familiar practices and beliefs, almost everyone learns something new. This month we discussed Chanukah, which begins very early on the secular calendar on November 28. We reviewed not only the familiar stories, but I realized that everyone, American Jews and non-Jews alike, have opportunities to reframe the way we see our lives during a season that is holy for many. These are the insights that emerged for me.

The Lighting of the Chanukah candles—

Most people probably know that Jews light eight candles, plus the shamash, which is the lead candle. The candles are lit to commemorate the miracle of Chanukah: when the Maccabees liberated the Temple from the Seleucids and restored and cleaned it, they found only one pure cruse of oil remaining. It was enough to burn for one day, but it burned for eight days, until additional oil arrived. To Jews, the miracle was a reminder that G-d was once again with us. The shamash, which is used to light the other candles, serves as the leader in this process. It “lights the way” to remind us of the miracle of the holiday.

The In-Between Times


In a sense (although some would argue otherwise), we are in that in-between time as a nation. It’s difficult to pinpoint when we “began the ending” of our nation, but when the Left became more blatant in their accomplishments, expectations, and efforts, the period of our naivete came to an end. And we entered the in-between time.

Now we are keenly aware that our democracy has been wounded by outliers that somehow made dangerous inroads to our governance and culture. We watched them do it, and tried to ignore that things were changing, particularly in education. We trusted our teachers and our schools to “take care of” our children, but our reliance on them was misguided. The time may have existed when we could count on them, but we didn’t notice when the education agenda for our children became their propaganda mandate.

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When we look ahead at the next four years under a Biden Administration, it’s easy to be discouraged and angry at the prospects. We know that nearly everything that Trump has accomplished will be co-opted as a Biden victory. We understand that the economy will suffer, people will lose jobs, more businesses will close and […]

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As the cries echo across the country to end lockdowns so that we can return to our “normal” lives, it’s become clear to me that there is no normal to which we can return. Of course, the word begs the question, “What is normal?” Here is one definition of the word: Preview Open

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The term “new normal” shows up in all the media, although it’s used to describe many different conditions. Some people use the term to describe the disturbing changes that have been made in the current environment. Government, industry, the culture and even individuals have been called to step up to mitigate and manage the corona […]

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Quote of the Day: The Fragility of Democracy


“A democracy is always temporary in nature; it simply cannot exist as a permanent form of government. A democracy will continue to exist up until the time that voters discover that they can vote themselves generous gifts from the public treasury. From that moment on, the majority always votes for the candidates who promise the most benefits from the public treasury, with the result that every democracy will finally collapse over a loose fiscal policy, (which is) always followed by Dictatorship.

The average age of the world’s greatest civilizations from the beginning of history, has been about 200 years. During those 200 years, these nations always progressed through the following sequence:

From bondage to spiritual faith;

Story Hour with Bridget Phetasy is a segment where Bridget reminisces with cousin Maggie and tells stories explaining who she is and how she got here. Full transcript available here: WiW27-StoryHour3-Transcript

This story hour comes as a result of several requests. Bridget covers her history with the restaurant industry – across the country, in small towns and big cities. Find out why being a hostess isn’t as easy as one might think, why you should never go out to eat when you’re starving, and why Bridget loved being a busser (hint: you don’t have to talk to the customers). Tales told also include, losing her virginity to someone inappropriate, her brilliant strategy for skipping school and how it all came crashing down, which famous singer grabbed her ass at Sundance, and Bridget’s secret true passion in life.

Quote of the Day: Kavanaugh Is Up to the Challenge


“Justice Thomas, who also faced false last-minute allegations during his nominating process, has spent more than a quarter-century on the court doing his job, staying true to his judicial principles, and not giving a damn what the Washington Post and CNN have to say about him. It’s unfortunate that the newest justice faces a similar task, but I’m guessing he’s up to it.” — Jason Riley, Wall Street Journal

The Left will continue to harangue us about Justice Kavanaugh and attack the man, but ultimately I believe he will be admired for his resilience under fire, for his passion for defending his reputation, for his defense of his family, and his stellar record. In the tradition of every Supreme Court, I hope he will be treated with respect and grace by his colleagues. I’m counting on their rising above all the chaos and welcoming him into the fold.

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Since I don’t like deadlines, I almost always finish my projects early. This post was no exception. And I grumbled about the finished project for several days. At first I identified a couple of people whom I sincerely admire, who had several attributes that I believed made them winners. I couldn’t help wondering why I […]

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