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Tag Archives: United States

Aspen Grove Santa Fe New Mexico, originally uploaded by carlmc.

I’ve been a big fan of Ken Burns since the beginning, we are soul brothers of sorts. We are both intrigued with the Civil War and Baseball, and now nature. I’ve been patiently waiting and now his new series “The National Parks” begins this Sunday on most PBS stations.

I was reading local coverage in the Austin American Statesman today and was floored at the title of the first episode “The Scripture of Nature”. Brad Buchholz states in his article,

“…Burns sees the national parks in a spiritual realm….He explains the distinctly American notion, espoused by Emerson and Thoreau, of seeking and discovering God in nature.”

I doubt this to be a uniquely American experience, but I don’t argue the validity of the statement for myself and my brother Ken. I also like the following quote from a park ranger in the film,

What could be more cathedral in feel than the Grand Canyon or Yosemite Valley? When I think of Sequoia National Park, I think of a cathedral or a mosque, or a church, a place where you’re not necessarily worshiping the name of something, but the presence of something else. When you’re in a grove of giant sequoia, there’s no need for someone to remind you that there is something in this world that is larger than you are, because you can see it.

It is in these moments that I too find myself connecting with something larger than my ability to comprehend, but not too large for my soul to embrace. No words need be spoken, no thoughts entertained…
just to be in the moment. My brother Ken explains it better than I can,

The underlying theme of all (my) films is love. It’s an impossible word to actually enjoy in any intellectual discussion. But at the end of the day, what these people are — whether it’s Abraham Lincoln and his ultimate sacrifice; whether it’s Jackie Robinson and the load he carried; whether it was Louis Armstrong and the message he delivered; whether it’s John Muir and the ecstasy he described — at the heart of this is love. And every single person we interviewed — and many of the people we quote — always talk about the larger kinship. They say: You’re part of it all. You’re connected to everything and everything else. And that love is the ingredient of the universe. It’s so hard to talk about it, because love is (so often narrowly defined) as romantic love…or parental love…or sex. But love is all these other things. Love is the heart of religion. The Scripture of Nature: Is it not but the highest love there is?

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Colbert at the National Portrait Gallery

Image by kalyan3 via Flickr

Again, Colbert Report hits it out of the park…

“He’s praying in private!…Folks I’m angry and confused. By closing the door on his prayers, Obama is letting us down almost as much as Jesus did when he said in the gospel of Matthew, ‘Whenever you pray go into your room, and close the door’. I just don’t get that guy sometimes, where you have to die to live?”

Watch this clip!

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