Friday, May 25, 2018


Hi There !!

From my earliest days I wanted to know.







My father used to call me

" Mr. District Attorney"

(after a popular radio drama of  the 40's).

In my teens

I started collecting quotes

that helped me deal with

my life questions.

I'd write each one

 on an index card

and kept pondering it

 all during the day.

The quote was

a wisdom reserve

to be mined.

It gave insight into the mystery

and adventure of life,

sight into the depth,

the innerness of things.

Well, I still collect quotes

finding such wisdom

and guidance in them. 

 With your permission,

I'd like to share a few.

some with you.

Each day for the  next week

please feel free

to select a quote

from the collection that follows here.

Consider writing the quote on a card

and having it with you all day.

May it be a wisdom reserve

 to be mined,

and more importantly,

to be "souled."

Consider it,


muse and meditate over it.

in the quiet moments of the day,

between activities,

in the shower, while driving,

making a cup of coffee.

As you do, consider

"What does The Spirit say

to my spirit through these words?"


"Live the life that wants to live in you."

                                                 Quaker Saying

"Enlightenment is intimacy with all things."

                                                 Jack Kornfield

"To reach Accord, just say, "Not Two !"

                                                    Seng-Ts' An

"We love what we attend."

                                              Mwalimu Imara

"Until the heart becomes an open 'l Let'

 it cannot be free."

                                               Johnny Walsh

"Beauty is Truth, Truth is Beauty -

 that is all you know on earth,

 and all you need to know."

                                                   John Keats

"As long as you do not live totally in the body,

you do not live totally in the Self."

                                            B. K. S. Iyengar

"How can you follow the course of your life

 if you do not let it flow?"


"When was the last time you sang?"

                               Question put to the sick

                               by a Native American

                               Medicine Man

"Another name for God is surprise."

                           Brother David Seindl-Rast

"And then the day came

 when the risk to remain

 tight in a bud was

 more painful than the

 risk to bloom."

                                                  Anasis Nin

" For the raindrop, joy is entering the river."


                                              (Sufi Mystic)

"'Discernment is a process

of letting go of what we are not."

                                        Thomas Keating

'Who sees all things in his own Self

and his own Self in all beings,

loses all fear."

                                     The Isa Upanishad

"To see takes time."

                                       Georgia O'Keefe

"Please remember,

 it is what you are that heals,

 not what you know."

                                                Carl Jung

"A fish cannot drown in water.

 A bird does not fall in air.

 Each creature God made

 must live in its own true nature."

                       Mechthild of Magdenburg

"You are that which you are seeking."

                                     Francis of Assisi

If you have a quote to share, I would love to receive it.

Welcome to new participation from Iran.

We appreciate the privilege of being together.

Thanks to all for your good company.

God loves you and so do I.

You can quote me on that !!

            John Frank



    Saw this on a local church signboard:

     "Tweet as you wish to be tweeted."


"frankly speaking" is posted online each Friday at


and can be book marked for easy access.

It is automatically available by email each Saturday.

The sign up is at the top right of the online version.

Past post are available at Blog Archives

at the bottom right of the online version.




Friday, May 18, 2018


Hi There !

So, summer is just about

to cross the state line.

Let's party !!

How about a major league,

blow out barbecue on Memorial Day?

Actually, I've already rented

a few lakeside fields

at the county park.

Orders are in for lots and lots of

really serious, awesome

food and drink.

Got a band, softball, horse shoes,

swimming, row boats, lounge chairs,

umbrellas, picnic tables,

all lined up.

We really need to get

kith 'n kin together

for a first class,

major feast,

a Family Feast.

You know, like one of those huge,

midwestern family reunions

they have every five or so years.

Everyone is in,

in from close up and in from far out,

be that geography, religion, politics,

income, and any other distance,

difference, or degree of separation.

Gotta reconnect, renew, refresh

tie in tight those family ties.

It'll take some stretch for sure,

but after all we really are family.

                UBUNTU !!

That's a lot more than the name for an

open source software operating system

from our computer to The Cloud and

to all our internet connected things.

                  UBUNTU !!

It is us connected fundamentally,

foundationally, essentially.

It is our human family's spiritual,

source software operating system.

The folks out in Silicon Valley

actually borrowed the term from

the beautifully connected people

of southern Africa.

How 'bout that?

                  UBUNTU !!

Quite literally and quite really means


Alone, I'm not.

Together we are.


Blood family.

World Family.

So, please stick with me, stay tuned.

Here's the list so far

of those invited to our

Memorial Day reaffirmation of our


 -Donald Trump

-Pope Francis

-Queen Elizabeth

-Joe Biden

-Jerry Falwell, Jr

- Mark and Prisilla Chan Zuckenberg

-An undocumented family from Arizona

 ( don't want to name them )

-Steve Bannon

- Bob and Mary Zimmer - he works at the

  U S Steel plant in Lorain, Ohio

- Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi -

   he is a key ISIS leader

- Rob Bell 

-"Judy" - she is  twenty two year old

   opioid addict from

   the hills of West Virginia

- Johnny - he is a frightened,

   fifteen year old gay teen

   from a small town in Mississippi,

   very much in the closet

-Sissy - she is a single, black mom

  working at a distillery in Bardstown, Ky

-A New York City couple

  ( they requested not to be named ),

  finance people, 1% -ers

-and of course all of us from

 "frankly speaking" - 

  we come from forty seven

 different nations at this point.

What a family we humans are

at heart, and that's our reference -

the heart of the matter!!

I mean, how cool,

how heart warming

it will be.

Imagine Queen Elizabeth,

a bit had from the wedding,

and Donald Trump,

freed from twittering

for the day,

munching away on

Grade A Angus burgers

( no McDonalds allowed )

and swapping tales

about the grandkids.

What bonding as young Johnny and Judy,

go row boating,

sharing their terrors,

being accepted and affirmed,

supported in their quests for freedom.

                  UBUNTU !!

       "I AM BECAUSE WE ARE !"

                 Family Firm.

Steve Bannon and Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi

teamed up to play Jerry Falwell and Rob Bell

in a vigorous game of horse shoes

and finding out they all four

like sports and actually enjoy

 each others' company.

Joe Biden couching both teams.

Alone is unnatural.

Together is human nature.

Pope Francis circulating

from group to group,

good father that he is,

and having the wealthy family

from NYC and the

undocumented family

from Arizona, as well as

Sissy from Kentucky,

join at his picnic table

for some great barbecue.

            UBUNTU !!

 Alone is lethal.

Together is dynamic.

The Zuckenbergers walking around

"Liking" everyone,

and folks happy to "Like" them.

Yes, our spiritual life is life

"All in the Family,"

in the very best sense of the term.

"We are because WE ARE."

See you on the 31st.

Together we'll serve up and savor

generous portions of family,

a  Feast of Family,

our human family.

            UBUNTU !!

Thank all of you for dealing me in.


     "I am because we are."

           John Frank


If you wish, please enjoy the

Meditation Markers that follow

as you pray over

               UBUNTU !!


and what that means for your

spiritual life out here

on the street of every day living.


"frankly speaking"

     - is posted toward the end of the week.

      - online access:

        and can be book marked

        for easy reach

      - automatic email available -

        sign up top right of the online version.

      - past posts available from

        Blog Archive,

        bottom right of online version.



The Buddhists have

a powerful way of expressing

          UBUNTU !!

May every creature abound
in well being and peace.

May every living being,
weak or strong,
the long and the small,
the short and the medium-sized,
the mean and the great.

May every living being,
seen or unseen,
those dwelling far off,
those living near by,
those already born,
those waiting to be born,

May all attain inward peace.

Let no one deceive another.
Let no one despise another
in any situation.

Let no one from antipathy
or hatred,
wish evil to anyone at all.

Just as a mother,
with her own life,
protects her only child from hurt,
so within yourself foster
a limitless concern
for every living creature.

Display a heart of boundless love
for all of the world
in all its height and depth
and broad extent.

Love unrestrained,
without hate
or enmity.

Then as you stand
or walk, sit or lie,
until overcome by drowsiness,
devote your mind entirely to this:
It is known as living
the life divine.

(As quoted in the Unitarian
 Universalist Hymnal, #597)

How can the various qualities
named here be lived out
in my real, daily life?
Detail as many as you can, eg.
how can I
 "Display a heart of boundless love..."?


"I give you a new commandment,
 that you love one another.
 Just as I have loved you,
 you should love
 one another."

                         John 13:34

What kind of love does Jesus
 have for us?
 Be specific.

 What does loving others like that
 look like in my world and day,
 my attitudes and actions?
  Be specific.


"For as in one body
we have many members,
and not all the members
have the same function,
so we, who are many,
are one body in Christ,
and individually we are
members one of another."

              Romans 12: 4-5

What are some of my "functions"
 in the Body of Christ?
How am I with experiencing
unity in diversity?
Specifically and really.

 "...we ...are one body in Christ."
How do I embody Christ,
individually and
at the same time corporately?
Specifically and really.















                                                  saltproject .org

"Be a lamp,
 a lifeboat,
 a ladder.
 Help someone's soul heal.
 Walk out of your house
  like a sheperd."

Please take each metaphor
that Rumi uses.
How can I translate the metaphor
into attitude and action?


Friday, May 11, 2018


Hi There !

So, I'll just bet you're an artist,

and a really good one at that,

but you're simply not telling anyone,

even yourself, right?

OK, OK. I can almost hear

a hurried, definitive

"Oh no!  No way, Not me!"

Well, I'll still bet you're really a gifted artist.

That's because our whole spiritual life is

a work of art, a work of creating and crafting

aliveness and beauty,

the art of the divine

that's not at all out of this world:

:  - deep sharing with our lover

    - advocating for environmental responsibility

    - being a fascinating story teller

    - raising kids

    - allowing ourselves to free fall into

      the ocean of Love we call God

    - looking out for the lonely and lost

    - being a community organizer

    - singing in the choir, car, shower

    - developing a community garden

    - cultivating a contemplative soul manner

    - mentoring

    - going on a spiritual retreat

    - planning a family vacation

    - taking an inner city child with you

      on that vacation

    - supporting social justice concerns

    - corresponding with a prisoner

    - cultivating friendships

    - hosting dinner parties and barbecues

    - doing  regular and substantive spiritual reading

    - sharing a hearty sense of humor

    - resisting media obsessions

    - having quiet Soul Time each day

    - finding or founding a

      Soul Share Community

    - being politically astute and  active

   - keeping a spiritual journal

   - and limitless more ways

     to be an artist,

     creating and crafting

     aliveness and beauty.

Happily, we find ourselves alive in

the dynamic energy field we call God.

We get to create with the Creator.

Each of us doing so

with our unique spirits, hearts,

minds, eyes, hand, ears, touch -

our special life giving art gifts.

Most of all, though,

our art enlivens

by our very being -

our being in Being -


 rambunctiously alive.

Donna J. Stone tellingly highlights

the art of being alive:

        The most visible creators I know of are

        those artists whose medium is life itself,

        the ones who express the impossible -

        without brush, hammer, clay or guitar.

        They neither paint nor sculpt -

        their medium is being.

        Whatever  their presence touches

        has increased life.

        They see and don't have to draw.

        They are the artists of being alive.

    (Quoted in The Artists of Being Alive,

     by Nancy Zapolski, PhD ).


A suggested practice for reflection

and prayer over the next week:


   - how can I relax more in Being,

     free fall into the ocean of Love that is God?

   - what has to go so that can come?

   - what has to come so that can stay?

    - what realization and practice

       would help on a day to day basis?

let me

     - jot down five ways I can be part

       of creating and crafting

       aliveness and beauty

       where I live,

       how I live.

    - in prayerful reflection recall, re-feel,

      three people whose touch

      increased my aliveness

      and be happy and grateful

      in that  reflection.

     - respond to what

       The Spirit speaks

        to my spirit when I hear

        the words of Jesus:

        "I have come that you

          might have life and

          have it to the full"

             (John 10:10)


Please do invite family, friends, colleagues

to check out "frankly speaking"

  -by your word of mouth,

  - your postings

    on Facebook and other media.

"frankly speaking" is posted

 toward the end of the week,

     - It can be bookmarked

        for easy access,

     - It is  available online at

     - And is also available automatically

       each week by email.

       Please see the sign up,

       top right of the online posting.

      - Past postings are available at the

         Blog Archive,

        bottom right of the online version.


Happily quite a few new people

have recently joined us

in our weekly gathering here.

How good to now have participation

 now from Hong Kong.

Welcome and thank you

for your welcome!


God has given use free run of

His Creation Studio

and invites us in all sorts

of ways to be a

   Life Artist.


Holding each

and all in

God's Dear Love,

 John Frank




Friday, May 4, 2018


Hi There !

So, here's the scoop.

Be the first to know.

It's not salacious enough for the

National Inquirer,

but I do need to fess up to you.

For four days, four long days,

I've tried to write

a piece for you on


It simply hasn't worked!!

That may say something about simplicity.

It sure says something about me!!

So here's the best I can do right now.

Simplicity isn't all that simple.

That's especially true in

our time and place.

For most of history

life was simple, but hard.

Today life is complex and hard.

The current of our culture

runs hard and fast

with complexity upon complexity.

We live in an epoch flooded

with countless technologies and systems

subtly in the service of materialism.

The theme song is


 "More is better,"

and all the more so if


increases by geometric progressions.

Our psyches, our souls, our society

are so speeded up in the pursuit of


that we get separated from each other 

and our true selves,

blur out clear channel connect to

The Ground of our Being

as we zip along on the surface  of things.

So, how about you?

How goes living in this epoch of

technologies and systems

with all their complexities

work out for you?

What effect have they had

 on your spirituality out here

 on the street of everyday living?

I'd be surprised big time

if it wasn't quite a lot.

They are now the ground we walk on,

the air we now breathe.

They effect us more than the weather.

For all the stress involved, though,

the technologies and systems

 of our times carry much good.

They can:

    - get you from New York to London in 7.5 hours

    - get the laundry washed and dried

    - get us in "text touch"

    - get us strawberries out of season

    - get us warm in the cold,

       and cool in the heat

    - get us credit "carded"

    - get us inter "netted" and face "booked"

    - get you a new knee,

      or do a repair on

      all sorts of body parts

    - get a pizza delivered at two in the morning

    - get us endless data, information,

      and entertainment instantly.

Yet, our technologies and systems

segment, suppress, stultify, stymie

and stress us.

    - we work in one place

       and reside in another,

       the two often connected

       by a torturous commute

    - on the way, many drop off

      the kids at a third place

      for others to raise

    - many work in cell blocks

      of cubical and relational confinement

    - for others it is isolated work stations,

      assembly line posts, delivery vehicles

    - being inter "netted' and face "booked,"

      our privacy is striped naked,

      bared to all, all in all

    - medical attention is

      depersonalized and mechanized

    - many of the elderly are cloistered

      in colonies of isolation and loneliness

    - when the power goes down

      just about every thing stalls and stops

    - we walk by each other on crowed streets

      ear budded in solitary confinement

    - to rent a car or have a medical procedure

      we blindly sign pages of

      incomprehensible legalize

    - there are programs, protocols, procedures,

      forms, regulations that never heard of simplicity

    - we Tweeter, Instagram, face time, text, SnapChat

      incessantly, and for too  many, addictively

   - there's an app for just about everything

      except tying your shoes

      (of course, how many people

       ware shoes that need to be tied anymore ?)

    - work and recreation are paced

      like a high speed machine

    - we are data drowned and

       information force fed

Our psyches and souls get

distracted, scrambled, stressed,

kept at a superficial level.

Society gets segmented, and lonely.

To survive,

and hopefully flourish,

in this high speed ride

to distraction and social fraction,

restricted to the surface of  stimulation,

we simply must simplify.

We simply must simplify

speed, space, "stuff" and style.

We need to simplify at soul level

and all the way out to

attitude and function.

and do so for sanity and society's sake.

It takes smarts and courage

to be counter cultural

while functioning in our

hyped up technological and

systematized society.

Our very sacred selves

and our very sacred society

depend on rebalancing simplicity.

Otherwise we are tipped on the hurried surface,

distanced from our Center and Source,

our deepest selves orphaned and abandoned.

We become technological and

systems paced and powered robots.

To simplify we go deep and real to our

Source and Center - God,

or whatever you choose to call

Fundamental Being,

Fullness of Reality,

Existence Itself,

The Energy of the Cosmos,


Our being and doing evolve from

that underlying, all pervasive

Being and base,

the font of existence.

To get our bearings and balance,

to simplify for full living,

we need to

"Return to the Source."

Speaking of that Source,

Thomas Aquinas said

     "Deus est simplex,"

       "God is simple."

That means:

    -  no moving parts

       to complicate, collide,

       or break down

    -  unitive

     -  whole

    - solid state

    - an integrity

    - A Oneness

Sensitive to our Source,

consciously centered there,

we live out our lives

simply and sanely

from right there,

not in whip lash reaction to complex,

surface simulation.

So growing detangles

the complexity holding captive

our heads and hearts,

frees us from a hell bent pace

and a maddening manner of

robot-like living,

one restricted to surface existence.

Where and how we live,

our pace and life style,

our financial choices,

our time to muse and schmooze,

addressing issues of social justice,

caring for the elements,

hugging babies,

having time and energy for a lover,

getting lost in a meadow, symphony, good book,

being Spirit feed and free,

all these open up and bloom to beauty

like a Spring garden.

It takes some time and sorting out.

Otherwise, we are "taken out"!!

So,  for the next week

let's take time each day

detoxing, sensitizing to simplicity,

allowing God's Simplicity,

Integrity, Wholeness to be ours.

The Meditation Markers that follow

are offered to support that refreshment.

Let's be wise enough to catch ourselves.

If we don't, it'll be Artificial Intelligence

and artificial too much else

from here on out,

and out we will be!!



A warm welcome to those new

to our weekly sharing here.

We are blessed this week

with new connections

in the United Arab Emirates,

Columbia, Portugal and Oman.

How good to be together here.

Thank you for your company.

"frankly speaking

is available here online at

and can be bookmarked for easy access.

It is also available for automatic delivery

by email. Please see the top right

of the online posting.

Past posts are available from

Blog Archive

located at the bottom right of the online version.

New posts go up toward the end of the week.

Ever good wish and abundance of blessings.

To borrow from the dear Shakers,

" Tis  a gift to be simple..."

Holding you in

God's Dear Love,

   John Frank



 We find a  place of Sanctuary.

We go there each of the next seven days.

We dedicate time to be stilled and centered.

We slowly savor each of the sharings for that day.

We then go back over them, selecting the one (s)

that most speak to our spirit.

We consider:

      - what is being shared here?

      - how am I/am I not experiencing that?

      - how can it happen freely and fully

       in my spirit and in the practicalities

       of my every day life?

     - what new attitudes and behaviors

        will free me for that?

     - what one practice will I embrace today

        to facilitate that?

We spend our concluding time being quietly grateful in God's Simplicity.


                               "Tis a gift to be simple,"

                            THE GIFT OF SIMPLICITY


    - " Childhood means simplicity.

              Look at the world

              with the child's eye."
                                                  Kailash Satyarthi

    - " In character, in manner, in style, in all things,

              the supreme excellence is simplicity."
                                Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

    - "Live simply, so that others may simply live."

                                                      Mother Theresa

    - " If you can't explain it to a six year old,

            you don't understand it yourself."

                                                        Albert Einstein

    - "I have just three things to teach you:

           simplicity, patience, compassion."

                                                                  Lao Tzu


    -            "Pure, holy simplicity

      confounds all the wisdom of this world

              and the wisdom of the flesh."

                                                       Francis of Assisi

    - "Simplicity is not an object in art,

           but one achieves simplicity

                 despite one's self

                 by entering into

             the real sense of things."

                                                Constaintin Brancusi

    - "Possessions, outward success,

       publicity, me these 

       have always been contemptible.

       I believe that a simple and

       unassuming manner of life

       is best for everyone,

       best for both the body

       and the mind."

                                                        Albert Einstein

    - "Reduce the complexity of life

        by eliminating the needless wants of life,

        the labors of life reduce themselves."

                                                   Edwin Way Teale

    - " Have nothing in your houses

         that you do not know to be useful

         or believe to be beautiful."

                                                      Hans Hofmann


    -                   "How many undervalue

                         the power of simplicity!

                    But it is the real key to the heart."

                                               William Wordsworth

    -                 "All the masters tell us that

                             the reality of life -

              which our noisy waking consciousness

                       prevents us from hearing -

                    speaks to us chiefly in silence."

                                    Karfried Graf Durckheim

    -               "Simple in actions and in thoughts,

                     you return to the source of being."

                                                             Lao Tzu

    -                     "The heart at rest sees

                             a feast in everything."

                                                     Hindu Proverb

    -              " The ability to simplify means

                     to eliminate the unnecessary

                    so that the necessary may speak."

                                                     Hans Hofman


    -                         "Find ecstasy in life;

                             the mere sense of living

                                  is joy enough."

                                                 Emily Dickinson

    - "To live content with small means;

         to seek elegance rather than luxury

         and refinement rather than fashion;

         to be worthy, not respectable,

         wealthy, not rich;

         to study hard, think quietly,

         talk gently, act frankly;

         to listen to stars and birds,

         babes and sages

         with open heart;

         to bear all cheerfully,

         do all bravely,

         await occasions,

         hurry never;

         in a word,

         to let the spiritual,

         unbidden and unconscious,

         grow through the common.

         This is to be my symphony,

                   William Ellery/Henry Channing

    - "Truth is ever to be found

                in simplicity,

         and not in the multiplicity

          and confusion of things."

                                               Issac Newton


    - "Besides the noble art

       of getting things done,

      there is the noble art

      of leaving things undone.

      The wisdom of life consists

     in the elimination of non-essentials."

                                                  Lin Yutang

    - "Fools ignore complexity.

        Pragmatists suffer it.

        Some can avoid it.

        Geniuses remove it."

                                                  Alan Perlis

    - " Simplicity is not about deprivation.

         Simplicity is about

         a greater appreciation

         for things that really matter."


    - " Simplicity is not style,

         it is a state of harmony."

                                          Naoto Fukasawa

    - " Simplicity is making

         the journey of this life

         with just enough baggage."

                                           Charles Dudley


    - "There is no greatness

        where there is no simplicity,

        goodness and truth."

                                               Leo Tolstoy

    - "My encouragement :

        delete the energy vampires

       from your life,

       clean out all complexity,

       build a team around you

       that frees you to fly,

       remove anything toxic,

       and cherish simplicity,

      because that's where genius lives.'

                                           Robin S. Sharma

    - "There is a beauty and clarity

         that comes from simplicity

         that we sometimes

         do not appreciate in our thirst

         for for intricate solutions."

                                        Dieter F. Uchtdorf

    - "When you remove layers,

        simplicity and speed happen."

                                              Ginni Rometty

    - "Manifest plainness, embrace simplicity,

       reduce selfishness, have few desires."

                                                     Lao Tzu


    - "Fear less, hope more, eat less, chew more,

       whine less, breathe more, talk less, say more,

       love more, and all good things will be yours."

                                           Swedish Proverb

    - "Beauty of style and harmony

        and grace and good rythm

        depend on simplicity."


    - "Three Rules of Work:

                  Out of clutter find simplicity;

                  From discord find harmony;

                  In the middle of difficulty

                  lies opportunity."

                                        Albert Einstein

    - Shaker Hymn

             Tis a gift to be simple, 'tis a gift to be free

             'Tis a gift to come down where I ought to be

              And when I am in the place just right

              I will be in the valley of love and delight

              When true simplicity is gained

              To bow and bend I will not be ashamed

              To turn, to turn will be my delight

              'Til by turning, turning, I come round right.