Friday, August 10, 2007

Kindred Spirit: RIP Tammy Faye

We'd been putting off watching her final TV appearance because we’d come to love her on Surreal Life and in documentaries and other Larry King Live appearances. In fact, she so impressed us by her behavior on Surreal Life that we’d come to be unlikely fans of this Christian evangelical, fans because she was so much more open hearted and true to her convictions than the false evangelicals our television is often crawling with.

So it was heartbreaking to see that the world would soon lose one of its rare Christian spirits. It seems so unfair. But she was inspiring to the end on Larry King Live calling regret a “waste of brain space.” Although her appearance initially made us gasp, Tammy Faye (Baker) Messner truly sparkled a mere 36-48 hours before her death.

I found
Deepak Chopra’s appearance on the show as commentator highly ironic. The self-help-sounding guru has become the spiritual touchstone of a self-described Christian nation. It’s incredible. Should we feel hopeful that American are finally opening up in spiritual consciousness beyond these Sideshow-Bob Christian evangelicals? Or should we be depressed that America has instead settled on Chopra’s captalistic empire of pop-meditations?

Larry King Live struck us as firmly skeptical, but he touched us when he announced that Tammy Faye had dwindled down to 65 pounds and that it must be all heart. To put her 65 pounds of heart into perspective. Our
Edgar Winter Dog weighs 35 himself. She didn’t even weigh two Edgars!

For a primer on forgiveness, I’m planning to read Tammy Faye's autobiography, “
Telling It My Way,” to learn how she overcame betrayals on multiple fronts throughout her life. Tammy Faye joked she wanted to be remembered for her eyelashes (and her walk with the Lord). But she can best be remembered for her sense of humor in the face of mortality, a gesture that shows she clearly had an authentic connection with a higher place.

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