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The Sun Magazine

The Sun Interview

The Trouble With Religion

An Interview With Matthew Fox

While for many Christianity implies intolerance, self-righteousness, and patriarchy, some have dipped into the well of the Western mystic tradition and drunk from sweeter waters. Rather than embrace Eastern religions, they are finding equally enlightened philosophies amid the discarded relics of the Christian church.

Essays, Memoirs, & True Stories

Lamb Of God

It’s AIDS Remembrance Day at the Episcopal Church. The poor, old Episcopal Church creaks on, trying to be relevant. I go to the service, take out the old blue hymnal, and stand up to sing some plodding hymn written a hundred years ago, or maybe two hundred. The church is fairly empty, although not as empty as some I’ve seen. This is a thriving church, as churches go. I bow to the cross at the head of the procession as it passes by me in the aisle. “Idolatry,” I hear Hadassa, my Orthodox Jewish friend, hiss in my mind. But I love the forms. I love bowing, kneeling, crossing myself. I would gladly lie on my stomach with my arms outstretched and abase myself to God, but you have to be Catholic to do that, and maybe even a nun to boot. That would be going too far.

The Contrary Farmer

My Uncle George liked to say that lazy farmers built the best fences because they didn’t want to do the work over in a few years. That was his way of saying that successful contrary farming depends crucially on reducing manual labor to a minimum by skill instead of expensive machines, and on making the hard work that remains more enjoyable. This is particularly important for those of us who must combine farm work with another job or career to make a living.

My Breasts, Adored

When I was younger I wanted Barbie-doll boobs: lavishly large and perpetually perky. Never mind that her breasts were two cold, lifeless knobs of hard plastic. They looked good.

The Battle

They were so angry that they decided to have a battle. So terrible was their anger that they would not wait, but declared that the fight must be fought now, immediately, on this very spot. Fox blamed what he considered to be the crime on Badger. Badger in turn was all for placing the blame on Cougar.



Joshua used humor to keep people at arm’s length — which was funny in itself, because his arms were stunted from polio at an early age and now lay close to his body, twisted and next to useless. National Public Radio often called him for a sound bite on disability, and he would oblige with fifteen seconds of his trademark wit. The quote would be heard on the next broadcast. That was the kind of guy Joshua was — quoted.


Years ago, I was addicted to mountain-climbing stories. I lived for the clear, crisp prose that transported me, safe from frostbite, to the summit of the highest peaks. I would imagine myself, my breath a perfect cloud, standing shoulder to shoulder with the sinewy international climbing elite that my wife liked to call the “Gore-Tex Gods.”

Readers Write

Missing The Obvious

I liked Eric right away. He stood at the edge of our group during the campus tour for incoming freshmen and kept making witty remarks that only I could hear. He wore wacky clothes and came from a town in Washington with a charming name. It seems naive to me now, but I assumed we would fall in love.

Personal Stories By Our Readers ▸


Everything that has a beginning has an ending. Make your peace with that and all will be well.


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