We slept with our bedroom windows open and our blankets at our feet. We heard the conversations of passing teenagers and lovers through the windows, and we heard the drone and swoosh of the occasional traffic. We could hear the ballgame on someone else's radio.
My father taught me how to ride a bicycle. I don't recall the day when my training wheels were removed, or the moment when he finally let go. What I remember is the simple task at hand on those Sundays, and the ease we once felt together. Then I hit puberty.
While some dismiss this growing problem of online harassment as simply harmless male trolls spewing their venom, such abuse is driving women journalists off the web. Why the differential between threats to women and men? The answer lies in persistent stereotypes about women, power and speech.
While I admire the majestic Bald Eagle, and I regard the U.S. Constitution as a stunningly intelligent and inspired document, some people treat me as if I have committed patriotic heresy by challenging the long-established unofficial national game of football.
One of the most amazing transformations for me has been the change in my courage. I am not afraid of people looking at my body, nor of what the scale says, nor -- most importantly -- of trying new things. For the first time in my life I feel like I'll try anything at least once.
The church is not only a Bride -- the church is also an incarnational Body and a royal kingdom Witness -- but when it comes to gender, the beauty of the feminine in communion with the Divine is the only metaphor that Scripture gives us. And for this reason, we ought to love the ecclesia effeminate.
Today, the same philosophy from the same scriptures is followed in a different way. My spiritual community is liberal, and yet the essence of the Vedas is preserved: love for God and all other living entities.
Next time you find yourself questioning someone's actions, male or female, or find yourself justifying your own actions, take a moment to remind yourself that you have the freedom to live your life the way YOU want to, and so does the other person.
A man I'll call Mr. Pebble had this to say at a "Girls Under 10" soccer coaches meeting I attended last fall in Los Angeles: "Girls at this age should not be coached to win; they are not competitive, not as intense as boys, and should not be pushed."