Heiser Christmas Letter 1989
Next year, the big computer topic will be Object-Oriented Programming Systems. I’ll start teaching a short course on it, for Learning Tree International. OOPS is a lot harder than falling off a log. I'm learning C and C++. My first project, a document comparer, is not very inspiring. Another company patented the idea, so maybe I'll try to think of something else.
I can easily identify with retired peace marchers; they're highly committed, and fun to be with. I kind of like the idea of retiring myself. Substitute teaching in the Los Angeles public schools is how I'm shocking myself out of retirement. The kids are fun to be with.
Wins and Losses for Civilization
Our 6-person family lives in harmony and joy.
The Catholic Workers give love and peace.
My Macintosh was infected with viruses twice in the past year.
Twice this year, we've had visitors from the Soviet Union. They are fine people who touch all the bases in their personal integrity; it makes me uncomfortable when I compare our temptations to cut corners. LA Weekly Chinese story. Simulated TV. Propaganda on ourselves as well as on others.
Real linen hankerchiefs are old-fashioned but very satisfying. Loretta discovered them, and now we're both enthusiasts.
Parting the Waters by Taylor Branch deserves the highest recommendation. This is a big book about Martin Luther King Jr. I'm surprised how hard the choices he had to make were. I think it will be worth rereading. This is the kind of book that could turn me into a history buff. "a truly breathtaking book" - Pax Christi USA. It's out in paperback now.
Peace and Love! Dick
A Christmas Song
Now that 1990 is only a few days away, I feel the year 2,000 is close at hand. Alot can occur in a decade which will mirror back whether mankind is hearing the message that we must make better choices: from raping mother earth of her resources to protecting and understanding that there are long-term reactions to our every action; from the disregard of plant and animal life to the realization that our true role is care-taker because all life is intricately interwoven; from the self-centered "me and mine, first" to the grateful and discerning use of abundant goods and services; from five skin colors of man under different flags to one human species on global earth.
In my opinion, Americans still respond to life’s experiences as if we were participating in the mad dash to grab free land under the Homestead Act of 1862. Somehow being faster, better, and having more than the next guy is our top priority in life. It doesn’t make us safe or appease our fears, but we feel that if we could just "go west young man, go west" our problems would be solved. Well, the bad news is that outer space is the only final frontier left, so the plastic in our garbage, our planet turning to desert, and the drug dealer and homeless person knocking at our door cannot be left behind.
Perhaps if we understand that our problems can vastly improve if we are willing to change our attitude, then the whole prospect of trying to cope will not be so over-whelming. While man has made phenomenal technological advances, we have sorely neglected our spiritual development. So much emphasis has been awarded our mental faculties, that we have lost sight of our heart’s wisdom. It is time for the pendulum to swing back to center. We must touch the mystery and wonder of who we are, and create as the artist who lovingly strives to move beyond limitations to express the fullness of the soul.
On a more personal note, I look forward to another year of teaching cello and performing with the Versailles Quartet and other music groups. I hope to become a member of Mahikari which is an organization that guides it’s members in the art of purification by divine light and the practice of following one’s inner guidance. The household on Corning Ave. is full of life and a variety of activity on many fronts, and I know I speak for the entire family in wishing you many blessings and joy in the coming year.
Best wishes, Loretta