Soul on Ice by Eldridge Cleaver

It was just a couple days before the Buffalo shooting I was debating to read Soul on Ice or the essays of Audre Lorde. I had both copies on my shelf and I went for this one. I would encourage everyone to read more work by black authors. This one in particular has been enlightening. The Buffalo shooting is terrible. If anyone of us is dying because of ignorance and hatred then we are all dying. Sometimes, when I’m faced with it, I’m overwhelmed by our broken world.

Eldridge Cleaver was one of the early leaders of the Black Panthers and was editor of their newsletter. He was convicted of several crimes which resulted in his imprisonment in Folsom Prison—same prison in which Johnny Cash cut a live album in 1968, two years after Cleaver would be released. It was in this year (1968) that Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. was assassinated. Cleaver was a follower of Malcolm X and was devastated by his assassination in 1965. It could be argued that this event really influenced his activism going forward, his involvement with the Black Panther Party, and his running for president via the Peace and Freedom Party ticket.

📸 wikipedia

“From my prison cell, I have watched America slowly coming awake. It is not fully awake yet, but there is soul in the air and everywhere I see beauty. I have watched the sit-ins, the freedom rides the Mississippi Blood Summers, demonstrations all over the country, the F.S.M. movement, the teach-ins, and the mounting protest over Lyndon Strangelove’s foreign policy —all of this, the thousands of little details, show me it is time to straighten up and fly right. That is why I decided to concentrate on my writings and efforts in this area. We are a very sick country —I, perhaps, am sicker than most. But I accept that. I told you in the beginning that I am extremist by nature —so it is only right that I should be extremely sick. I was very familiar with the Eldridge who came to prison, but that Eldridge no longer exists. And the one I am now is in some ways a stranger to me.”

— Eldridge Cleaver, Soul on Ice, 1968

New Book Release 👉👉👉Detroit’s Lost Poletown: The Little Neighborhood that Touched a Nation

My work for the last two years has come to fruition…thank you @historypress for believing in this story!! It officially releases in a week!
Available for preorder now!!! Link: http://bit.ly/Poletown

Poletown was once a vibrant, ethically diverse neighborhood in Detroit. In its prime, it had a store on every corner. Its theater, restaurants and schools thrived, and its churches catered to a multiplicity of denominations. In 1981, General Motors announced plans for a new plant and pointed to the 465 acres of Poletown. Using the law of eminent domain with a quick-take clause, the city planned to relocate 4,200 residents within ten months and raze the neighborhood. With unprecedented defiance the residents fought back in vain. In 2004, the Michigan Supreme Court ruled that the eminent domain law applied to Poletown was unconstitutional—a ruling that came two decades too late.

The book of Amos

“Seek good, not evil, that you may live.” (Amos 5:14)
What if we changed this a bit? Instead of God always pointing at us with these statements, God instead points back at God. What if we changed it to, “Seek good, not evil, that GOD may live.”? Now we seek good not for ourselves, but for the sake of Creation, for the sake of God, which will have a trickle effect on the people of the world. Now it is changed to a deeper sense of allegiance and duty. God must exist for creation to exist. If we are always seeking good, then we are seeking God and in doing so we keep God alive, not only within ourselves but in all we do for others and for the planet: recycle, plant a garden, laugh with our children, sing, etc. The more we seek the good, the more we are seeking God. The more we seek God, the more we will see God everywhere and get to know God and be close to God, and our union in this way will do us the most good, and that goodness can be shared with our neighbors so it grows and God may live.

Homemade Christmas Gifts

Made my Christmas gifts this year!

The nativity and the angel were done in oak from a special family tree. I tried to keep the integrity of the tree as much as possible.

Then there is Neil Young, a couple of them, because I needed to practice. The one most like him is on the left. My brother asked me one day if I make anything other than religious people (my bro is not religious) so I made him his favorite musician. He laughed.

The saint in the middle was a practice one of St. Jane Francis de Chantel. The real one I gave away is below…

They’re all varnished in my homemade 18th century varnish.

Listening Hearts: Discerning Call in Community

I help my son with his math a lot these days, sometimes I feel like it’s my job while they are remote. It works out because I’m also confused so it boosts his confidence and he gets to teach me a lot of the time. But in between problems I whittle. I’m almost done with St. Margaret of Scotland who looks more like the princess from Mario Brothers and the other is the Blessed Mother, who is not finished yet. I’m trying to figure out a way to do them that would look more folk art than a cartoonish depiction, so I’ve been studying museum folk art pieces. Totally irrelevant to the book featured here that I will read soon as it was a recommendation from a priest who is my spiritual mentor while I’m taking this discernment course. Anyone out there ever read it? What did you think?