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Family Valued 9.28.05

Feline violence

This week, a randomly selected 9-year-old and I will discuss the Warriors series by Erin Hunter. The books are a recent discovery in our household and seem to be catching on at school.

What made you start reading these books?

I did this summer reading thing and you could get a free book if you read eight books. I read eight books and they had the first Warriors book and some other books that weren't so cool. I didn't think the Warriors book was going to be so cool, but it was. If you want to know, it's called Into the Wild. After I read that book, I kept looking for the other books since I liked it so much. The one I just finished was the third book: Forest of Secrets.

Why are the books called Warriors?

They're about warrior cats that hunt and protect their clans. A clan is a group of wild cats who live together.

So there's lots of violence?

Well, a lot of violence if you consider tons of cats scratching, shredding, biting, and tearing each other to pieces.

So you don't think that's a lot of violence?

Nope, compared to some things that I've seen.

Exactly what have you seen?

Well, on some kids shows.

What kids shows?

Teen Titans, Justice League Unlimited... and that's it. But you don't have to worry about the cats using bad language. They only use semi-rude words. And some parts are sad.

Who do you think would enjoy the books?

People who like cats and adventure.

--- Craig Brownlie

Lather, rinse, repeat

Who is free of the underbrush, but attached to the forest? Who, set free from the forest, runs back to the forest? Come, see that person, who, released, runs back to bondage itself. --- The Dhammapada XXIV.11

The issue is junior high and high school --- a particularly nasty pit of demons and snakes that I narrowly escaped, into which I now throw my daughter five days a week. My first impulse is to minimize her trials and tribulations. This is a most cowardly approach. It speaks of some unpacked baggage of my own.

Parenting is most difficult when my children are treading on ground I remember covering myself, especially the terrain over which I stumbled and fell. I search in vain for wisdom attained in time spent out of my mind. I seldom come up with anything they find the least bit helpful. Often we sigh, shrug, and give up talking about it, exhausted.

I spend so much energy trying to wash myself clean of my past. I often refuse to honor previous experience as full-time traveling companion and sometime pilot.

Attention teens! Here's our nasty adult secret: We vowed never to revisit the stage you are enduring right now! Hey, tortured one: We know these are not our wounds, but yours. Still, somehow, it's not your pain... but ours together.

He, truly, is supreme in battle who would conquer himself alone, rather than he who would conquer in battle a thousand, thousand men. --- The Dhammapada VII.103

--- Rev. Corey Keyes

This week for families

The Rochester City School District's Parent Leadership Academy is on Tuesdays, October 4 through 25, at the Parent Center, 30 Hart Street, Rm 126, 6 to 8 p.m. Free, but registration is required. 324-9960