Ash Wednesday and Lent

This is the kind of fast day I’m after: to break the chains of injustice, get rid of exploitation in the workplace, free the oppressed, cancel debts. What I’m interested in seeing you do is: sharing your food with the hungry, inviting the homeless poor into your homes, putting clothes on the shivering ill-clad, being available to your own families. …

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The Parents’ Way Podcast

Progressive Politics, Spirituality, and Parenting Angela and I have started a new podcast. where we invite you to a conversation about progressive politics, spirituality and parenting. In this episode, Angela and Niels talk about their ideas for this podcast, and why we feel it is necessary. There is very little space for parents to discuss politics and spirituality especially when …

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Give Life

Dear Kai, It seems that there are two different stories presented about being a man in our day and age. The first one we see in the media, on t.v. mostly and if you’re unfamiliar with it, the story is quite simple. The husband is at home a bumbling foo; and the other has to nag him every step of …

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I Love Women

Dear Kai, Several years ago I did an exercise in a class where we drew a box on the black board and we called it the “Be a man” box. (I learned this exercise from the sociologist Michael Kimmel.) The idea is that the class identifies what they think of when they hear the phrase “Be a man!” They were …

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Remember your mother’s love

Dear Kai Today I want to start with an assumption. You tell me if I’m right or not. When you think about your parents, mother(s), father(s), members of your extended family, family friend and others who are close, do you think about their wealth, if they have any? Do you think about their jobs or business? Do you think about …

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Splendour

Dear Kai, You know that poem by Robert Browning called Paracelsus? It was really the last few lines of the poem I want to focus on. … And to know Rather consists in opening out a way Whence the imprisoned splendour may escape, Than in effecting entry for a light Supposed to be without. All that you may need in …

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Dear Kai

I am writing you today to address a question that you didn’t ask me. Yet, even though you didn’t ask me this question, I can feel that it weighs on you.
What is that question you ask?

What must I do to become a real man?

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Navy SEAL masculinity and parenting

A couple of days ago I was listening to the Art of Manliness podcast. Brett McKay interviewed Eric Davis about his recent book: Raising Men: Lessons Navy SEALs Learned from Their Training and Taught to Their Sons. The author comes from a completely different perspective than me. I grew up a pacifist. But we have a lot in common when …

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Meditation is Spaciousness

Meditation can help us when our kids act out. It is easy for us to react quickly. But usually our reaction contain in them things that have nothing to do with our kids. We at out of our own past, out of our own hurt feelings and traumas. We need some daylight between our kids acting out, and our own …

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I love you — I love you not

Children use the words “I love you” for their parents and that may be confusing for stepparents. In particular when the kids and stepparents clearly love each other. Don’t be confused. Kids share their affection gladly and freely. You just have to see them in the ways that they do. I am very curious to hear your reflections on this. …

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Laura Figueroa

This is episode 2 of the Kids in Nature Podcast series. You can find episode 1 here. Laura Figueroa is an occupational therapist and the organizer of Timbernook East Bay. She currently works as an occupational therapist in the Oakland Unified School district. In the Fall she will start her private practice outside, in nature, rather than in a studio. …