Editor’s Note: On soul searching

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Editor’s Note: On soul searching

I’ve been asked many times why I got a divinity degree, and there isn’t a simple answer. When I think about the enduring weight of student loans and the concrete impact it’s had on my professional life (virtually none), I begin to wonder myself. But that kind of hindsight sells short my own path, ignores who I was when I decided to go back to school. And it also misrepresents the transformation I underwent as a young school teacher on the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation.

Ultimately, I went back to school to study theology and its practical applications because I had rational questions about big things, like my soul, that needed sorting out. And those rational questions arose from experiences, moments of enlightenment, that were impossible to explain with the language and understanding that was available to me at the time.

My generation, Generation X, has been deeply engaged in pulling back the curtains, peering into the dark corners, gazing into the mirror, and wandering the globe in search of answers we can only find by looking into our own hearts. We’ve reached an age when we are starting families, settling down, and realizing that there are some things you can’t ever pin down. It’s an interesting time for us: We dropped out and tuned out and now, like prodigal children, we’re trying to fit in and sink roots without letting go of what we discovered. In the process, we are learning how to be happy.

This week’s cover story  looks at how members of three very different generations have coped with one of the nagging 40-year questions that has shaped counterculture, (and pushed toward the mainstream) since the last Age of Aquarius: Are our souls connected to each other through some higher consciousness? It’s a puzzle tailor-made for an encounter with the moral and religious fragmentation initiated by globalization, and one that was also confronted by Carl Jung and many others early in the last century.

Welcome to the new New Age, where young people like Nick Lasky aren’t asking whether there’s something bigger out there so much as trying to figure out how to plug it in.

  • Millionsix

    Hey Giles you lover of the first amendment, make sure if you or your loved ones are assaulted by three thugs at a local mall, you don’t give a description of the attackers lest it might offend anyone. And don’t allow anyone to speak their God given mind about it in your comment section.

    • gobstopper

      ” you don’t give a description of the attackers lest it might offend anyone’

      Did you miss the photographs somehow?

      • Millionsix

        I’m waiting for the mugshots.

  • http://gawd.co/ Mostly Harmless

    What meaningless twaddle. I would ridicule the scope of your talent, but that would first require me to locate it. I have scraped more insightful commentary on the nature of soul searching off of my shoe with a stick. After perusing the detritus of your navel contemplation, I feel compelled to nominate for an award in literary and journalistic excellence, that very same stick. One can only hope the image selected for the header in this article, the Hanged Man, is somehow prescient of the future of your career. Your abilities in composition should be restricted to shorter subject matter: might I suggest, “Will Work 4 Food.”

    How’s that for hate, Mr. Morris?

  • algonquinmatt

    “.. In the process, we are learning how to be happy.”

    You passed judgment on readers who are rightfully angry about a racial beating that took place in your neighborhood. Instead of letting those readers share their stories and express their masses of frustration, you (knowing better than all of them) decided to censor them.

    You must think you need to teach them to be happy. Why don’t you start with the three thugs. Go find the three black thugs and ask them why they decided to assault the white couple without provocation.

  • Malcolm Flowe

    Giles, you’ve pounded sand up your ass and now your tiny pin-shaped head is buried there. If you haven’t the balls to call out C’ville’s Negro problem, and the lazy Shifletts on the police farce who refuse to perform their job, then you sir are a coward. I miss Deke. The good news is, Virginians can open carry. If only the woman who shot the blurry pics of her companion’s beating had been pulling the trigger on her Ruger ACP instead, local Negroes might reconsider their behavior.

  • Malcolm Flowe

    Giles Morris is a fragile, piss-elegant, cowardly and talent-free poseur. I pray that this criminal waste of DNA is beaten by local Negroes until his vagina explodes.

  • Tom Menino

    The previous four generations of your five-generation news family must be roiling with disgust at your sad attempts to squash open debate about a critical topic which your paper chose to report on. Does your collusion and complicity with the police in their attempts at stonewalling on the knockout story constitute the *new* journalism? Is censoring of opposing views and avoidance of difficult discussions what you see as the future goal of your profession? Or are you just in over your head in your position as Editor in Chief?

  • Wha? Chinango

    Time spent as a teacher on Pine Ridge? That’s a brave and committed
    move toward idealistic beliefs, or shall we say praxis. It’s
    impressive, and so is completing an M Div. Giles.

    I’ve commented on
    some editorial gaffs of yours but really like the unassuming and honest
    stance you bring to the job. I’d encourage you to take a harder look at
    the community and be a bit more “Hook” and less “Albemarle Magazine”.
    The mall beating story brought upwards of 400 comments where the usual
    “Newest Victorian Doily Shop on the Mall” rarely elicits any. Much of
    it was seething vitriol, but there’s the real story when you’re ready to
    ride the tiger.

    A great spiritual challenge is figuring out how
    to find common ground with people who are so filled with bile and spite
    that all they can do is lash out, whether in hateful posts or hateful
    acts of violence. And how to convey to them the difference between
    giving vent to the demonic, albeit in the pursuit of what they think is
    right, and offering civilized polemics, even if they aren’t politically
    correct.

    In the meantime maybe just propose to the anonymous
    writers below that they go find Chief Longo and spout off about their
    views in person. Their right of free speech and tough guy bravado would
    both be effectively distilled by doing so.

    • gobstopper

      The vast majority of those comments came from people who don’t live anywhere near Charlottesville and who were riled up by a link in the Drudge Report. If you search their usernames, it is pretty easy to find other comments by many of those who wrote in response to the beating article or who have cried about censorship. If you do so, you will find that they are by and large people who do little more on the internet than regurgitate half-thoughts about Obama, Eric Holder, George Zimmerman, etc.. Some are almost certainly paid astro-turfers, many are the same folks who populate Stormfront forums. Those are likely the more informed and better educated. Not really a group seeking dialogue or common ground, but more one that seeks confirmation of their beliefs and easy scapegoats for their own lack of ability to make it in a word that they are in many cases not bright or educated enough to fully participate in.

      That said, I do agree that under Moris C’ville seems more like a very lightweight version of Albemarle Magazine. There is much to criticize about local government and many other stories need to be told about what is going on locally yet there is no one in the press who seems up to the task now that the Hook is gone.

      • Wha? Chinango

        Yeah silly me assuming that they were actually local comments. I’d want to hear from the dimmest of the local Crackers because they’re still part of our community but the comment section analogue to traveling soccer hooligans ought to be suppressed, not due to content but because they’re just trouble-making outsiders.

    • Millionsix

      Chief Longo isn’t the coward that shut down the people’s comments.

      • Wha? Chinango

        The comments were in violation of clearly stated rules. Free speech isn’t a right on a private enterprise site. You get that don’t you? Maybe go back to your troll “Negro” comments on a more hate tolerant site?

        • Millionsix

          Too bad we can have rules for everything we don’t agree with in life.

          • Wha? Chinango

            I believe your first post was the equivalent of “Waaaa why can’t all the hatemongers from out of town come carpetbag post on newspaper site in a town we know nothing about….it’s against the rules to shut us down. I don’t agree with that waaaaaa.”

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