Peace and Diamonds in your Mind

Over at Jake's Place Fr. Jake has called to our attention a concert at the Washington Cathedral tomorrow. The Cathedral advert says this:

"Pray for Peace
Tuesday, October 16, 2007
6 pm Prelude Prayer Ceremony

7:30 pm Benefit Concert

Acoustic musical performances by Graham Nash, David Crosby,
Jackson Browne, Keb’ Mo’, Krishna Das, Emily Saliers and John Hall.

Proceeds will benefit the Cathedral Center for Global Justice and Reconciliation and the International Campaign for Tibet."

It promises to be a most amazing event.

Fr. Jake has some good words on the whole thing and a bit from an earlier concert by Nash and Crosby.

It recalled to mind a wonderful benefit concert, called "Healing the Divide" in which Tom Waits sang "Diamond in Your Mind." The chorus goes,

"Always keep a diamond in your mind
always keep a diamond in your mind
Wherever you may wander
Wherever you may roam

always keep a diamond in your mind."

For the full lyrics (from an earlier version) go HERE. There is a fine review of the disk from the concert HERE.

The Diamond here? Perhaps the Diamond Sutra. As with many things Tom Waits does, this song is filled with images of people who struggle with unending suffering and those who could avoid even knowing of that suffering. The diamond in the mind, among other things, is the willingness and ability to be both non-attached to suffering and plenty and to be filled with compassion for all beings and all that is. Compassion is at the heart of the world, not the world as we have it, but what we Christians call the reign of God...God's world. So the prayers for peace must always include the diamond in the mind - the core of commitment to compassion.

We are often reminded of this compassion in the talents of singers and musicians.
In the midst of all the doings in Anglican-land it is wonderful to know of occasions such as this one. May the Washington Cathedral through this time bring compassion and the music of compassion at a time of great need.


  1. Sad to say I wont be in the area then. I wish I could be, but making a living is sort of key.


  2. Mark, thanks for this. Note that the concert is part of a remarkable three-day program of "Interfaith Peace Prayer Practices" which runs today through the 18th. From the link you provided, click on the tab that says "Programs and Lectures" and then select the "Interfaith Peace Prayer Practices" item for more details. (Sorry I don't know how to create a link.)

  3. Concerts are nice, and so are peace efforts; God blesses them all. But considering that we have no peace in the Church, I doubt Episcopalians are going to lead the nation and the world to a new path we ourselves cannot find.

    I ask this respectfully: When will you, as a member of Executive Council, speak to Katie Sherrod's concerns and those of Ft. Worth Via Media? They're in her own blog, Nick Knisely posted them in The Lead and now Fr. Jake has them too.

    Why are loyal Episcopalians in secessionist dioceses being hung out to dry by 815? That is the complaint; now tell us the facts.

    People are tired of platitudes about journeys, listening and fasting for a season of untold, perhaps interminable length, when multiple dioceses in this Church are planning to secede within weeks. If there are contingency plans, name them. If there are funds available to loyalist communicants in disloyal places to organize and publicize their concerns, disburse them. If there are legal strategies local parishioners ought to pursue, publish them.

    Perhaps the real news in this schism is not that people disagree about Gay people or "the authority of scripture," but that every one of our institutions is failing, from the Anglican Communion on down through the General Convention, 815, Executive Council and the Office of the Presiding Bishop. None of them can read the writing on the frigging wall. No one is ultimately responsible.

  4. Mark--The concert was fantastic! Wish you were there! So wonderful to see so many people of faith gathered together to focus on the REALLY important issues like Peace and Justice! To see our Church, by way of the National Cathedral, take the lead made me glad to be an Episcopalian! Our Church is very much alive and doing well!

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