Item description for No Grazing for Sacred Cows: Tormenting Questions in a Bizarre World by Noel Francisco...
Overview The provocative ponderings and questions of a modern-day prophet will change how you look at life. These vignettes are a launching pad for a sermon, a group discussion, or personal reflection and growth. When you read this book you will change -- you will examine who you are, what you've become, how you look at life, and how you relate to your wife or husband, your children, your community, and your work. "Through a lifelong commitment to the classroom and a careful examination of the institutions of our times, Dr. Francisco reaches through the disillusionment spread across American culture for the past forty years to consider values ... and restores a reasoned foundation upon which we can build anew. "Dr. Francisco's style is easy, almost casual, but the questions he poses will keep you on the edge of your chair ... this book is a must-read." Clyde O. Rogers Executive Director (retired) Duluth Bethel Society
Publishers Description The provocative ponderings and questions of a modern-day prophet will arouse the reader/listener from an easy acceptance of ready-made explanations of what may be called the good life. Each of these vignettes, presented as questions and ponderings, is a launching pad for a sermon, a group discussion, or personal reflection and growth. "Through a lifelong commitment to the classroom and a careful examination of the institutions of our times, Dr. Francisco reaches through the disillusionment spread across American culture for the past forty years to consider values... and restores a reasoned foundation upon which we can build anew. Dr. Francisco's style is easy, almost casual, but the questions he poses will keep you on the edge of your chair... this book is a must-read." Clyde O. Rogers Executive Director (retired) Duluth Bethel Society "Dr. Francisco is a distinguished teacher who combines dispassionate scholarly discipline with passion for human culture... look, and you will find the incisive critique, the prophetic bit, on nearly every page. Watch out " Paul Nicely Emeritus Professor Methodist Theological School in Ohio "If you are questioning the values that are pushed at us today and wondering if you are alone, this book is for you. Dr. Francisco addresses social and spiritual issues that plague us and reduces them to manageable dimensions... this book will make you think " Bonnie C. McNurlen, Ed.D. Des Moines, Iowa Noel Francisco earned the A.B., M.A., and B.D. degrees from Drake University, Des Moines, Iowa, and his Ph.D. from Duke University, Durham, North Carolina. He has taught sociology at Albion College, Albion, Michigan; Millikin University, Decatur, Illinois; Lycoming College, Williamsport, Pennsylvania; and the University of Wisconsin-Superior, Superior, Wisconsin. He has directed the Lycoming Center for the Study of Democratic Living and for twelve years served as president of the board of directors of the Duluth Bethel Society, an organization which works primarily with chemically dependent individuals.
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Studio: CSS Publishing Company
Est. Packaging Dimensions: Length: 8.31" Width: 5.39" Height: 0.45" Weight: 0.44 lbs.
Release Date Apr 1, 1999
Publisher CSS Publishing Company
ISBN 0788013297 ISBN13 9780788013294
Reviews - What do customers think about No Grazing For Sacred Cows?
Author uses unique format to question everyday assumptions. May 30, 1999
Author raises questions challenging (no grazing) our everyday assumptions (sacred cows) about how we should live in Western society (bizarre world). The questions are broad and widely relevant, but the format (i.e., a journal to the author's mythical, spiritual advisor) makes this a very intimate, personal, and compelling book to read. The author has a very easy to read writing style.
A first-rate analysis of typical American attitudes. May 29, 1999
This book should be widely read because it speaks to human concerns that often are not clearly perceived. In an incisive and sensitive manner the author challenges the priorities that seem to dominate the lives of many Americans. These values, he contends, can be self-defeating and contribute to the de-humanization of life. An individual might deal with such conditions through candid communication with a trustworthy confidant who will listen to one's deepest concerns.
The author questions assumptions that nothing can be done about behavior problems because of inherited traits. He believes that while genetic patterns may precondition some forms of behavior, it remains for concrete life experiences to define and limit behavior. Humans possess potential for either good or evil. Those leaders who portray people as basically imperfect may make it easier for these leaders to control others, to "rescue" them from their flawed natures. Some leaders tend to discourage or forbid questioning and leave the field open to their own solutions, knowing that many people yearn for ready-made answers to the most crucial questions.
Many seek security in the accumulation of material things that "rot and rust" with time, leading to greater insecurity than ever. But the author does not despair: "I know there is a spark of divinity in all of us".
He cites the importance of empathy and commitment in human relations, stressing the relevance of these qualities for marriage and family life. Boys tend to be reared in our culture to repress displays of emotion. Males especially seem to operate on the theory that they will become more vulnerable if they express emotion.
Too many Americans are "preoccupied with success" in servitude to their own vanity. "Simple experiences," such as appreciation of the beauties of nature, can often result in more enduring satisfaction. But most of us are always "busy," too busy to hear the birds sing, "...too busy to die (and)...too busy to live".
Most of us are "suckers" when confronted with the exaggerations of modern advertising. But the "American Dream," to possess all the goodies, brings only fleeting satisfaction until the next goody appears.
Most of us are in "bureaucratic prisons" resulting from the modern organizational revolution. The author longs to be free of entrapment by the power centers.
The tendency to categorize and classify people warps our perceptions of people as individuals. "Unrestrained and blind ethnocentrism" courts disaster. "It is almost unbelievable what some individuals, intoxicated with the tribalism of their religious fanaticism, ethnic loyalties or national zeal will do to those who are considered their enemies. Francisco points to events in Northern Ireland, the Balkans and the Near East, for example, as major threats to the future of humankind.
Humor can be a saving grace."...humor can reduce the gravity of a situation and enable us to clear our heads for more reasonable thought and action". Perhaps a lack of humor indicates "intoxication with oneself".
The leaders of institutions often compromise the original purposes of religious, educational, business and governmental institutions, acting as if their institutions exist exclusively for themselves. The author wonders what might happen if institutions were to function more in line with their original purposes. Might we then discover greater economic security for more people, more meaningful education, and so on? "I hunger," he writes, "for spiritual food, but it is a rare experience when I receive much spiritual nourishment in the services of organized religion," which is typically too ritualistic and dogmatic to serve the real spiritual needs of individuals.
"Novelty addiction" born of boredom may be potentially dangerous. Might gang leaders, glib religious and political leaders and "obsessed messiahs" take advantage of the discontent of bored people?
To be sure, the concerns presented by the author have often been expressed by others, but his book brings the pieces together into a compelling whole. Francisco observes that the world is still full of wonder and adventure. The sacred cows must still contend with the hopes and aspirations of mind and spirit. The author has issued a profound challenge: It takes courage to confront a confusing and often frightening world. Heed his words!
A deep and honest look at self in conjuntion with the world May 22, 1999
No grazing is an intimate look at the author's life and times. He has taken the time to reflect and allows the reader the key to his innermost thoughts. It is a very honest and true book about life's choices and their effects.