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  • Karl Thunemann

Karl's Keyboard #8

Updated: Dec 29, 2020

That Agonizing Question: Am I Losing it?

I started writing posts for this blog more than two years ago. About the same time, specialists at the county regional hospital handed down their diagnosis of my brain, which they had been studying intermittently for nine months. (My brain may have started having cramps, sitting still all that time.) Their diagnosis: Mild cognitive impairment, due to vascular disease and risk factors.

Of course I would write about this experience, It seemed momentous, Still, weighing the implications and inferences took me several more months. And then, when I had written a triptych of cognitive impairment epistles, I did not want to slap them into the blog immediately. I hoped some readers would find the blog palatable. How would you like to know on first reading that your blogger is cognitively impaired? The blog format suits my cognitive state. I hope you will agree. Keeping epistles short enables me to minimize loose ends.

So today, here are those three posts. I should pause here to mention that one of my friends said that the way this blog rolls out new features, three or four at a time, seemed a little overwhelming. She wanted to read just one, and then maybe the others. So I told her I would send her an email with each new Keyboard, suggesting the one I think would most interest her. This week, I hope she will read all three posts, plus the initial piece by my brother, John Scarborough, who makes his debut this week as a frequent contributor.

I have known John longer than anyone in my life. We shared a room growing up. The other three members of our nuclear family—so too all our aunts and uncles—are dead. There is no longer anyone we can turn to for a third opinion on what really happened. John recently remarked that we look like brothers. Of course now we are both in our 70s. I recall a moment—it must have been more than 40 years ago—when John came to our small Unitarian Church to hear me deliver a sermon. I do not recall the subject. Afterward, John and I were standing together on the church porch with a friend. After a lull in the conversation, she observed that we breathed alike. I suppose that is still true. There’s something about being brothers!

When I started this blog, John was my most prolific responder. He thinks so well and is quite an excellent writer. He should be a frequent contributor! I am working on a short list of topics I hope he will take up, but of course he is a free agent. I hope that at times we will agree to write on a chosen topic for side-by-side publication.

Featured in this Keyboard:

Be sure to read all three of my posts, in the order listed; they unfold sequentially). Plus, of course my brother’s first epistle.

A Big Huzzah

One hallmark of this blog is that we are not in the business of telling people how to meditate. We tell stories in which meditation figures. Some readers must wonder what loving-kindness meditation is like. Here is a website that offers a simple instruction for beginners: Lotus Heart Mindfulness

Let’s continue a dialogue!

There are two ways to take part:

1. Post a comment on the blog! Some readers haven felt frustrated with this, but it is pretty simple: To comment on the blog: scroll down to the bottom of the post, where there is a comments box. You will have to leave a name in order to comment, but all other information is optional. It will give the option to leave your fb, Twitter, or Gmail but you don't have to.

2. Consider becoming a contributor. I will consider posts about meditation, broadly defined. I prefer stories over instruction, but I am flexible. I like posts shorter than 1,000 words. Send your proposed text—or a query—to me at

Til next time …

May you keep on meditating, and visualize the advance of social justice.


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