By Sandi Tomlin-Sutker
Before I present this month’s lineup of inspiring, informative and fascinating articles, I want to talk about the idea of tolerance and acceptance of other’s ideas and beliefs.
We’ve all just gone through a very frustrating and sometimes scary time when our congressional representatives went head to head over ideological ideas, even to the point of closing down the government (to a cost, it seems, of $24 Billion or more!). But there is an alternative to rigid “sticking to your guns.” A recent article in the New York Times quoted Senator Susan Collins: “Although we span the ideological spectrum, we are used to working together in a collaborative way.” And with this kind of acceptacne, tolerance and cooperation, it is the Senate women who will be able to move forward in crafting long-term solutions.
This attitude of accepting that we have differences and finding ways to understand, maybe even value the other’s side of things was brought home to me directly this month. One of our advertisers decided they didn’t want to continue with WNC Woman because someone commented to them about an article in the magazine refering to “playing God.” This was the title of Cosmicomedy in October. Lavinia’s column is always thought-provoking but also tongue-in-cheek, not meant to represent literal truth but simply one way (often quirky) of looking at life.
Sometime last year I received a series of letters alternately complaining that we have not enough “Christian content” or that we have too much! As I said then, and want to repeat, the vision of WNC Woman is that the articles, stories and columns come from the grassroots of our community.
It is vitally important to us that all people of good will are welcome to express their ideas and feelings here. I do try to balance each month’s offerings to reflect the range of our readers and the diversity of opinions held by them. And we want to have advertisers who also reflect that diversity of interests.
And this debate is reflected at the macro level in the utter dysfunction of our government in facing long-term issues. No wonder every two years voters often want to “throw the bums out” but rarely see true alternatives. Is it possible for women to lead the way toward a more sensible, civil kind of debate? I want to think so and the example of those Senate women, even though ideologically diverse, gives us a hopeful model of how it can work.
This month’s theme of Blessings and Gratitude is such an important one. We all have a lot to be grateful for (even when we don’t recognize it!) and several writers give us some great advice and tools to help us remember, every day–not just during this season–how blessed we are.
Cathy Holt focuses on how to connect with our own hearts to help us get in touch with our blessings. Carolyn Fraiser talks about her path in making the Bible and its lessons accessible and understandable, especially to young people.
November is National Native American Heritage month and in honor of that we offer two reviews of new books about Cherokee history and culture and a profile of a Cherokee business woman.
A profile of Lorre Diamond recounts her work with abused and grieving children through the healing power of dance. Our regular columnists are in fine form with some witty, unusual ways of looking at the world from low-brow TV to high tech to the spiritual.
Sophia helps us organize our time, just “in time” for the hectic Holidays. Food for Thought presents some information about Dairy and alternatives to it, and offers a delicious recipe for coconut milk “ice cream”! Yum.
This idea-packed issue includes lessons in getting your dog to come to you when called… with ease. Our regular business columnists give us great ideas for focusing our energies to become known as the expert in our field. Common Sense Health offers specifics for the often difficult task of raising healthy kids. More book reviews, poetry, some juicy quotes… it’s all here!