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Tuesday, September 7, 2021

a prose poem

The Time of Year Light Appears

by Ryan Ventriloquist

            I was on the wishing machine, doing a dance of roses, when suddenly, out of nowhere, there was an open field in front of me. I didn’t know whether or not I should enter, but there was nothing stopping me, I could tell, and anything could appear in a field that comes out of nowhere.

            That was what happened in the beginning. I washed my hands clean of all that happened before I came to that junction and I scratched my forehead about what might become of me. There was nothing holding me back from being whatever I could become anymore and I could cease to hold onto the past, as it was now the inconsequential circumstances that led to me in this field of joyousness leading to eternity with God.

            There is something brilliant in daylight and something beautiful about the way it appears in front of you after a long streak of dimly lit space, floating in color by the light of stars and the moon. You can find a wonderful way of being in the field before you, where your worries disappear and all that you need is right here, in a perfect medley of time and space, where rejoicing on peace is truly great. That is what that day was like and I was so glad to be walking with my best friend and father, Jesus, through this turnstile into a new rung of open air and fresh love.

            She was on the radio, blasting from afar, her light a million and rising. She was in a perfect calm of transcendent bliss, doing for me what I could have done had I walked the path differently and followed in her direction.

            That is the way this is heading, Jesus led me to believe through the meditative quiet I came to in composed, peaceful prayer. “You are heading to her and she is heading to you. One and one equals two.” That was my mantra when I meditated on the eve before this day, this day when everything is coming anew and light is breaking through in the way of the goodness of the time of the peace and bliss and happiness and joyousness and love.

            I am grateful for her. That is the truth. She is new to me again, always finding a new way of being and replacing her old one with something beautiful. I am in a tremendous light of calm, entering the field now.

            She is coming there with me. I can feel her from far away. She is calling.

            We are in a peaceful bliss, a calm, composed love that is brilliant and amazing.

            I am so grateful for her, more than I could begin to describe. That is the way I can say it best. I feel it inside and out, all around, up and down, here and there, all places I go, everywhere.

            She sings me a song by The Beatles and I am in a perfect mood, when all across the universe she is in the friendly way of the birds on the windowsills making a call to the day a million times over in the most transcendent of ways.

            She is wonderful in her thoughts and her speech, brilliant in her composed, calm complexion of radiant perfection. I am so grateful to know her so well and to get along with her through the breeze that is in our wonderful eyesight and earshot and she is so amazing and good and I am so grateful for her. That is the truth. She honestly amazes me. I cannot even begin to describe it at all.

            She is wonderful in all her holy, awesome ways, and I am so grateful for her, as I walk into this meadow before me, wondering what will come out of it.

            Soon I am in a blue room, her eyesight. All is quite swell. She is in it too and she knows I love her. She knows I love her in her heart and in her soul and I know she loves me. We are in love. That is the truth. So what do I do? I kiss her a million times over and above, and make her go into peace of bliss beyond words. That is what I do in the field. I do it a million times a million, for the goodness of love.

a poem

The Open Way of Heaven

in the winding grass on the hill her face transcends,
in a beautiful grace that God has manifested.
here we are, always together.
she is so grateful she is in the peace of
the time of the light of the Lamb.
it is so loving and awesome the way Jesus brings
our hearts together in shapes of twos and threes,
and salvation.

an amazing dart of Cupid has struck her.
she received it with a shooting star
in her heart of heart,
it hit just right.
and He brought it, special for her.
and then a magic carpet,
with a rose garden blessing
of blissful life.

she and i glide through.

our souls' comportment,
by the loving gift of grace,
encapsulates us in
the enchanted forest
where we hike to the tallest cliffs
and gaze outward
for miles upon miles,
our spirits soaring on and on.
and all of each other,
and The Holy Lord.

she is so wonderful
in this infinite meadow of love.

she is so wonderful.

so amazing and holy and wonderful indeed.

and so loving.

so, so loving.

it brings me to my knees.
always thanking Jesus
for the love and goodness she bequeaths.

even though the spinning factory,
by fertile, verdant hills of open plains,
runs in diagonals with a spinning slant
and peace of mind eludes them there,
with their millweed fields that’re barren,
and toiling for more,
not having much
or not having enough to begin,
arranging parts that combine obscene
in a mad forgetfulness
completely lacking rationality,
their hopes in vain,
copper metals weighing heavier
by the passing of each day.
and it shouldn't have happened
what happened that way.

she is my everything forever.
and we will be together forever someday.

by Ryan Ventriloquist

a poem

The Beauty of Tiea

she shines light!
so much light!
light! light!
overtakes me with light!
she is the song of the sailor,
the shepherd’s best friend,
the luck of the reaper,
her beauty moves mountains.
her beauty is the midday shine,
her beauty is the moonlight and sun,
her beauty is the power of the ocean,
her beauty is the tenderness of mary's song.
i am so grateful for her, i hardly have words.
in silent prayer i thank God for her.

by Ryan Ventriloquist

a poem

Holy, Holy Lord

Holy, Holy Lord,
You are so amazing and good.
You are so beautiful and awesome.
You are so wonderful and glorious.
You are so unfathomably great.
Beyond comprehension is the depth
of Your love for all people.
You chose to carry out the ultimate sacrifice,
to save Your children
by the cross.
A Lion and a Lamb,
Mighty God, you came to serve.
Now my sins are redeemed,
and because of You my feathers are preened.

by Ryan Ventriloquist

Sunday, September 5, 2021

What is democracy?

revised and updated on 9/7/2021 at 9:20 a.m.

Democracy entails the cultivation of a critical citizenry, what the ancient Greeks referred to as paideia—a body politic characterized by citizens who are inquisitive, who reach their own independent judgements on issues and ideas through thoughtful, evaluative reflection and processing of information, who do not conform to the stances or opinions of others, but rather, reach their own conclusions through autonomous analysis of variegated considerations, who think for themselves, trust themselves, and rely on themselves; moreover, the noble tradition of paideia incorporates the vital importance for the citizenry to exhibit upstanding moral character and virtue. This involves that fundamental concept of justice—valuing the dignity of all people, being open to cross-cultural perspectives, behaving with a cosmopolitan mentality, heeding and taking into consideration voices of difference, and most importantly, upholding the two greatest commandments. Democracy furthermore entails the utilization of courageous speech, what the ancient Greeks referred to as parrhesia, which can be characterized by standing up and boldly speaking the truth, even if it goes against the grain, mustering up the confidence to speak truth to power while staring in the face of corrupt, mendacious, and powerful political institutions, utilizing speech to burrow down to the heart of issues in order to expose truth, to disseminate knowledge and wisdom.

With an informed and critical citizenry (paideia) engaged in robust and meaningful democratic exchange (parrhesia), the totality of the polity (demos) can collectively carry out governance (kratos) in the mode of civic genius. Democracy comes from the Greek roots demos, the people, and kratos, govern.

Civic genius is the collaborative, collective democratic undertaking of forging the identity of who we are as a nation, as we the people—establishing with clarity the roots of our ideological creeds, outlining our long and complex shared history, celebrating our melting pot of ethnic and cultural heritages, conscientiously giving testimony to, working through, and mourning our nation’s traumas, determining our nation’s place in the international order, sharing pride in our nation’s virtues and accomplishments while also taking stock of the litany of our nation’s ills and woes... together as a people, engaging in constructive, respectful democratic discourse in which we flesh out and come to a mutual understanding in regards to our nation’s collective consciousness, in which, through inquiry, dialogue, reflection, and debate and compromise where debate and compromise are needed, we shed light on this communal phenomenon of what it means to be a U.S. citizen. The act of civic genius goes even farther than that venture. Through robust, respectful, constructive democratic exchange, we the people, come to identify our predominate values, our top priorities, our most paramount initiatives and endeavors. And we the people determine how we ought to function as a nation, as a cohesive unit, as a living machine of living parts—what kinds of policies we ought to endorse, what type of legislation is appropriate, how we can manage and overcome our nation's problems to ultimately develop into a more safe, prosperous, conscientious, and domestically and internationally responsible nation, how we can blossom in harmony and interconnectedness while learning from and empathizing with our fellow citizens, transforming into more fulfilled, ethical, and well-rounded citizens due to our democratic interactions, and how we can create a more peaceful, peace-oriented, and peace-centered human family, by opening our arms as a peoples to greater global cooperation, collaboration, and community, along with a greater global mentality and ethos, while cultivating more faithful peace of mind. All in all, in partaking in the act of civic genius, we, as a peoples, envision and create what U.S. life and U.S. society ought to entail.

In a nutshell, how democracy theoretically can straightforwardly be understood in the U.S. is a paideia utilizing parrhesia to collectively carry out civic genius.

by Ryan Ventriloquist

Mullsay dialogue—

Thank you for reading what I have shared with you here in this publication. I am sincerely grateful for your engagement in this democratic exchange of which I am presiding over. I ask you to take some concerted time to mull over this piece of writing and then to say your thoughts by responding to the following prompts (hence, Mullsay the Zine). And with as much earnestness and yearning, I ask you to read through carefully and consider the thoughts, ideas, affect, desires, concerns, and considerations of the various people who also put forth comments. If you have input you wish to offer that is not related to what I guide you through in prompts, I invite you to share it in the comments section that is located below the prompts. Please keep in mind, in democratic dialogue, it is of essential importance to be respectful and kind, thoughtful and peace-oriented.

In an ideal democracy, the citizenry participates in an active and engaged manner with the governing institutions, lending their voices to those institutions, along with all of the thoughtfulness infused with those voiceswhich is informed through critical self-examination, inward and outward reflection, spiritual insight, dialogue amongst one another and their comrades in all parts of the world, education, creative endeavors, observations, the media apparatus of the public sphere, their travels from here to there, and their overall inquisitive psychological-corporeal-frames (selves). Central to an ideal democracy is talk. The citizens talk amongst one another and with the governing institutions.

What are some modes by which citizens can inform one another in a meaningful way?

What are some ways that citizens can become more informed?

What are some ways in which this dynamic of an informed citizenry impacting the governing body in a thoughtful way can be brought out more richly in the U.S.?

by Ryan Ventriloquist

And I invite you to mull over additional thoughts related to this essay and offer your input in the comments section below.