Loyalty to Good

Here’s a thought that’s been really helpful to me in the last several years: We don’t ever need to side with people – not with Trump or Pelosi or Obama or McCain, or whoever – we just need to side with Truth and Love. If I start there – with Truth and Love – everything else sort of falls into place after that. Is this path leading me towards Love – towards being kinder, more thoughtful, more selfless, more compassionate, more understanding of others? If not, then do not waste time with it. Does that road lead to Truth? Is it going to make me more honest? Will I still have my integrity intact at the end of that road? If not, then do not follow that road.

I’m thinking our only loyalty should be to what is good in this world – to what is kind and honest and selfless and decent and honorable.

Alrighty. That concludes today’s sermon. Carry on then…
– Karen

Valentine’s Gift

“Love, redolent with unselfishness, bathes all in beauty and light.”
– Mary Baker Eddy

It may not come in the form
of a Valentine’s card
a box of chocolates
a sparkly ring in a jewelry box
a dozen roses
But if you look for it today
you’ll see it –
that gift meant just for you –
the evidence of Love’s love.

See it in the smile you get
from a stranger,
in the sunrise and sunset,
the stars sparkling
in the night sky
and the rainbow
unique to you
– no one else sees it
just as you do.

You bring your own gift
within you wherever
you go.
Feel it. Hear it.
Embrace it. Know
Life’s love.
– Karen Molenaar Terrell

 “Three components are necessary for a rainbow. There must be sun, there must be raindrops, and there must be a conscious eye…your eyes must be located at that spot where the refracted light from the sunlit droplets converges to complete the required geometry. A person next to you will complete his or her own geometry… and will therefore see a separate rainbow… As real as the rainbow looks, it requires your presence just as much as it requires sun and rain.”
– Robert Lanza, Biocentricism

A rainbow arches over Padilla Bay in Skagit County, Washington. (photo by Karen Molenaar Terrell)

“Cheaters Edition”

We were shopping at Fred Meyer’s today and I came upon a new version of “Monopoly” (the board game). This version is called “Monopoly: Cheater’s Edition.” It came out in June, 2018. Here’s what the game is about: “Follow, bend or break the rules to win the Cheaters Edition of the Monopoly board game. Cheating is part of the game. Don’t get caught. This Monopoly game includes a plastic handcuff unit that ‘chains’ cheating players to Jail space. Cheat cards encourage players to cheat and which cheat to attempt. Complete a cheat to get a reward; fail a cheat and pay the consequences.”
 
And it struck me that this new version of Monopoly is pretty representative of where our nation is right now. Our current president has shown us it’s okay to lie, cheat, bribe a foreign nation, and brag about “grabbing pussy” – so long as you don’t get caught – and then even if you DO get caught it’s okay – so long as you can threaten and bully your way out of it. Here is a man who created a fake university to collect tuition money from students hoping to make better lives for themselves. Here is a man who has refused to pay his workers. Here is a man who threatened to withhold funds approved by congress to an ally nation in order to make a political rival look bad. Here is a man who’s called our Constitution – the document he’s pledged to protect – “phony” because it kept him from making money from his resort. Here is a man who, from day one, has been dismantling our environmental protections.
 
Some folks have suggested that we need to quickly stop the trial of this president so we can “unite” again as a nation. But I disagree with this sentiment. Ending this trial quickly is not going to help “unite” us. Ignoring this president’s misdeeds, trying to shuffle them under the carpet, and letting him continue to get away with lying, cheating, and bribery is NOT going to help our country move forward – and it is certainly not going to help our nation unite and heal.
– Karen Molenaar Terrell

“Though error hides behind a lie, and excuses guilt, error cannot forever be concealed. Truth, through her eternal laws, unveils error. Truth causes sin to betray itself, and sets upon error the mark of the beast. Even the disposition to excuse guilt or to conceal it is punished. The avoidance of justice and the denial of truth tend to perpetuate sin, invoke crime, jeopardize self-control, and mock divine mercy.”
– Mary Baker Eddy

Dee Molenaar and God

Dad had originally been named “Deo” – but when he was in his teens he learned “Deo” meant God, and he thought it was a little presumptuous to be named “God” – so he changed his name to Dee.

Dad was not a religious man. But he was a spiritually-minded person. He told me once that he felt closest to God when he was in the mountains. I could relate to this. I’ve always felt that Nando Parrado’s thoughts about God in Miracle in the Andes expressed really well my own feelings about God, and probably Dad’s feelings, too: “…I did not feel God as most people see Him. I did feel something larger than myself, something in the mountains and the glaciers and the glowing sky that, in rare moments, reassured me, and made me feel that the world was orderly and loving and good… It was simply a silence, a wholeness, an awe-inspiring simplicity. It seemed to reach me through my own feelings of love, and I have often thought that when we feel what we call love, we are really feeling our connection to this awesome presence… It wasn’t cleverness or courage or any kind of competence or savvy that saved us, it was nothing more than love, our love for each other, for our families, for the lives we wanted so desperately to live.”

I asked Dad once what had inspired him to become an adventurer and explorer. He said a book he’d read as a youngster – The Royal Road to Romance by Richard Halliburton – had been a huge inspiration to him. He quoted these words from the book: “Live! Live! Live the wonderful life that is in you. Be afraid of nothing. There is so little time that your youth will last – such a little time.”

And live that wonderful life my father did. All 101 years of it.

As many of you know, my mom was a Christian Scientist – she wasn’t very religious, either, in terms of following a human organization and institution – I think she thought of CS more as a way of life than a religion – and she loved the idea found in CS that “God is Love” and that she could actually use the power of Love to heal. The great mountaineer, Pete Schoening – who saved my dad’s life and the lives of four other men in The Belay on K2 – had also, coincidentally, married a Christian Scientist. So the Molenaar and Schoening kids had (and still have) a lot in common.

And all this leads up to a message I got from Pete’s daughter, Lisa Schoening Jertz, yesterday. She brought me a much-needed laugh:

“Your father has always been very personable, warm and funny the times I have seem him. He must have been a great father.

“Many years ago he was visiting us at the house on the lake in Kenmore. It was just before the 40th Anniversary Reunion of the K2 1953 Expedition in the Wind River Range was to take place. Dee was helping me iron and fold the commemorative K-2 T-shirts.

“He told me how much he appreciated and respected Colleen’s Christian Science faith. He told me that he had learned from your mother that when he was scared or felt uncomfortable he would say ‘God is Love’ and this helped him greatly with the situation.

“On the day of the visit it was also my father’s birthday. Unbeknownst to my father my brother Mark had just gotten his pilot’s license at 18, including the Seaplane rating. As a surprise Mark flew in with a seaplane to take him for a birthday ride. Being the host Pete was, of course he invited Dee to go along. They all got into the plane and as the door of the plane was closing I heard a soft voice say ‘God is love’– that was your father. It made me laugh.”

Dad and 100th birthday rainier this one

Adventures with Dad

Some of you have suggested I create a book from the posts that chronicled my adventures with Pop. I actually published one a year ago (Are You Taking Me Home Now?: Adventures with Dad). I’m working on a second one now – picking up where I left off with the first one. Thank you for all the support and encouragement you gave to Dad and me on our last adventures together.

Several of you have taken the time to let me know what the first book meant to you. Thank you! It’s meant everything to me to know that Dad and I did something good together – that we’ve been able to touch other people’s hearts with our journey of the last few years.

Berg heil!
Karen Molenaar Terrell

Are You Taking Me Home Now?

*Are You Taking Me Home Now?: Adventures with Dad* can be ordered through your favorite book store or ordered online through Amazon.

Dad and Moz: Together Again

Dad and Moz: Together again.

Daddy passed away yesterday morning. I guess some part of me felt that if we didn’t announce his death, it wouldn’t be real. I actually found myself going to Dad’s page on Wikipedia to see if a death date was listed, yet – and when it wasn’t listed I figured that meant Dad hadn’t really died – because Wikipedia knows everything, right?

I wasn’t with Dad when he passed – I was walking on the boardwalk in Bellingham. But he was surrounded by the dear care-givers who took him into their home three years ago and loved him as family. Our whole family has been so blessed by the care shown Dad at Cedar Grove. Thank you, Gwen, Amanda, Megan, and Dietrick. I don’t know what we would have done without your love and support the last three years.

I have felt the support and love of all of you, too. I might go into hiding for a little while – so if you don’t hear from me, please don’t take it personally. It’s just me doing what I do. I love you all – each and every beautiful one of you. Thank you for joining Dad and I on our adventures together the last three years. We couldn’t have asked for better adventure-comrades.

As Dad would say, “Berg heil!”
Karen

Dear Senators…

Dear senators –

We, the people you serve, are depending on you to represent us with integrity, wisdom, and courage during the coming impeachment trial.

The evidence and testimony we have seen during the last months shouldn’t be ignored – evidence that shows threats to Ambassador Yovanovitch’s life and career; the assessment by the Government Accountability Office that our president violated the law by withholding nearly $400 million in military aid to the Ukraine; an interview with Lev Parnas that indicates our president (and many others in political service to our country) “knew exactly what was going on.”

If those who represent us do nothing in the face of all this evidence, they are setting a dangerous precedent and showing us that our president and those who surround him really ARE above the law. If what Lev Parnas says is shown to be true and our representatives don’t take action against THIS massive corruption in our government, when DO they take action?! If THIS is ignored/accepted then you’ll be giving license to every politician to ignore our Constitution and laws. Our democracy will be finished.

Please stand up and send the message that corruption in our government is not okay and will not be tolerated – now or in the future.

– Karen Molenaar Terrell