Betsy Packard's Blog (8)

The Quaker Hermit -- Definitely been "in hiding"

Talk about taking a vow of silence!  The Hermit's hard drive crashed, so I'm stuck using the library's resources for accessing QuakerQuaker.  I can kind of check email via a data service on my cell phone for $15 a month, which costs less than a new computer.  (The old one is 5 years old, the RW/CD drive is dead and now the hard drive, so I don't see repairing it as an option.)  

The famous Kentucky writer and poet, Wendell Berry, refuses to let a computer in his house.  He hand writes…


Added by Betsy Packard on 6th mo. 8, 2012 at 4:27pm — 1 Comment

The Quaker Hermit: Stuck indoors -- but still productive!

I had planned to play in the pool at physical therapy today, and then catch the bus out to St. Michael's Episcopal Church to hang out with fellow beaders. 

First, my physical therapist called and said they were having a problem with the pool, so I was rescheduled for tomorrow, but I also wasn't feeling "quite right" anyway, so I didn't mind the cancellation.  THEN a chronic medical issue decided to p ay a call, and leaving the apartment (other than to exercise The Girls) let alone…


Added by Betsy Packard on 5th mo. 8, 2012 at 8:11pm — No Comments

The Quaker Hermit: Finding Personal Peace

Remember that splendid "Serenity Prayer" that is at the core of 12 Step Programs?  It often takes courage to  accept the things we cannot change, and to move past those negative elements in our lives. 

What is the proper way to handle a situation with a person whose values and rhetoric conflict radically with our own, as Quakers? 

It takes wisdom to realize and accept when another person is not going to change, though I think most folks these days have the basic perception that…


Added by Betsy Packard on 5th mo. 7, 2012 at 10:30pm — No Comments

The Quaker Hermit: Staying out of the Race

Yesterday was a big day here in Kentucky:  the running of the famous Kentucky Derby. 

I did not go to Churchill Downs (despite several invitations), I did not attend any of the Derby Festival activities, and I politely refused all invitations to Derby Parties (the saner alternative to actually attending the race, but still not for me).  There was even a Quaker Derby Party. 

As a person with a deep love for the creatures with which we share Creation and with a gift for working…


Added by Betsy Packard on 5th mo. 6, 2012 at 12:11pm — No Comments

The Quaker Hermit: Herd vs. Solo

I had a very interesting discussion with a non-Quaker friend this morning.  I've long studied animal behavior, especially regarding canines (wild & domestic) and horses, but have certainly enjoyed learning about the behaviors of other creatures with whom we share the planet. 

If a young springbok is being pursued by a hungry lion, is the little antelope safer making a solo run for its life or should it head for the herd?

Are you in a prey mindset, or are you a predator?  If…


Added by Betsy Packard on 4th mo. 30, 2012 at 3:06pm — 4 Comments

The Quaker Hermit: Takes Time for Communing!

I attended both 1st Hour Discussion and Meeting for Worship this morning at my local Meeting. 

However, an issue that prompted me to seek more solitude was once again mentioned both in vocal ministry AND in the  announcement for discussion at an upcoming social event.  I feel like we are (if you will please excuse the phrase) "beating a dead horse."  Sometimes excessive focus on an issue becomes a road block, an obstruction to healing.  Sometimes all the words that need to be said…


Added by Betsy Packard on 4th mo. 29, 2012 at 3:17pm — No Comments

The Quaker Hermit: Purpose

What is the purpose of a Quaker Hermit? 

With a strong background in psychology and a firm commitment to the Quaker Testimonies, I tend to think in terms of the unobserved reasons for observed behaviors.  Why has a person (or even an animal) taken a particular course of action?   I believe that as Quakers, we attempt to live purposeful lives.  Hence, what purposes could there be in solitude, in seeking a more solitary life? 

As one responder to my last post so perfectly pointed…


Added by Betsy Packard on 4th mo. 26, 2012 at 1:38pm — No Comments

The Quaker Hermit

One of our values is that of Community, not unlike convents or monasteries, other "churches," communes (old and new types).  So, is there a place for a Quaker hermit?

Just as Thomas Merton received permission from his abbot to have times of solitary existence, I do think there are times when individual Quakers may have a need for solitary time of silence and contemplation.  Even Thoreau went to the woods. 

In the "noise" of this world, in the contention that at times seeps into…


Added by Betsy Packard on 4th mo. 23, 2012 at 2:40pm — 4 Comments

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