Letters to the Editor

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I would like to thank Gil Michaels much for writing about Advaita (“Prayer Techniques for the Fearful,” Aug. 27). I really enjoyed it. I’ve never responded to an Alameda Sun article before but this time I felt compelled to. I’d love to comment on a few points

1) I don’t consider the choice to be between mental awareness/awakening and a “distant, mythical, imaginary god.” To me that distinction itself emanates from a patriarchal dualistic Lens. For those of us who are Bhakti/devotional by nature, the inner Lord is Both the doer and the actor. Like the great poet NzozAke Shang said,

“I found God in myself and I loved Her fiercely.” There is no separation.

2) I’m hoping Rupert Spira’s quote at the end of the article means that when one is in the state of “I Am,” even if physical illness exists, the identity is anchored in wholeness regardless. If he is saying if that once one is awakened, the physical body will never have disease, that’s one more untrue dualistic distinction.

Ramana Maharishi died of throat cancer. There are countless other examples. The principle of Parabdha karma is useful here: our individual bodies In a given incarnation have karma and lessons to experience regardless of the awakening of the mind To its true nature. In other words, You can know you are not the Body and still have helluva bodily karma.

3) The word ‘mankind’ to mean all of humanity just doesn’t work for many of us anymore. It’s a little like saying ‘white people’ to mean ‘all people’. Saying Humanity or humankind is like a welcome mat to the other half of the planet:)

Thanks again for this terrific piece. May the Sun include more of them!

— Tosha Silver

September is Better Breakfast Month, which coincides with the beginning of the school year. Unfortunately, as our Alameda schoolchildren resume remote learning due to the coronavirus, one in four students isn’t getting the nourishment their bodies need to excel academically. It’s hard to concentrate on learning when you are yearning for food.

The Alameda Food Bank is addressing the needs of these children by providing a host of healthy breakfast items in every hefty box of food given out at our distribution center on Alameda Point each Monday, Wednesday and Friday from noon to 5 p.m.

Milk and eggs, bagels and tortillas, high-fiber cereals, oatmeal and fresh fruit are among breakfast items that help kids get ready for the day’s assignments. Granola bars, applesauce, yogurt and fruit bars are included to make recess snacks wholesome and fun.

The Alameda Food Bank is currently serving more than 7,500 families a month including almost 3,000 children. We need the community’s help to provide a healthy breakfast for students and their families who are struggling to make ends meet. For every dollar donated, we can buy $7 worth of nutritious food. For more information on how to donate, visit us online at www.alamedafoodbank.org.

— Cindy Houts, Executive Director Alameda Food Bank

The woman and children at Midway shelter for abused women and children would like to thank those individuals and groups who have contributed to the shelter in August A number of the listed donors have contributed several times last month. Three donors chose to remain anonymous.

Kelly Marx donated in August, as did the Pipkin-McGrath Family, Lois Pryor and Kathryn & Alan Hanley, Lynette & Kent Dupuis helped the shelter last month. They were joined by a donations from the Zombie Crawl, Gabrielle Dolphin & Alan Pryor, Virginia Krutilek and Teri & Kevin Kennedy. Jay Dawson sent a check to help the shelter, as did Michele Lerandeau, Mary Buck and Pam & Willem VanDeKamp.

If you would like to see your name listed among the September donors, send a check to to Alameda Homeless Network, P.O. Box 951, Alameda CA 94501. To learn more call (510) 357-0205, ext. 206 or visit www.midwayshelter.org.

— Ginny Krutilek