Remembering Stardust

Remembering Stardust

By. C.D.Baker

A Book Review and Reflections

    There is a saying in Vietnam, which goes something like this: One can break a rock with an egg, meaning that if one is patient enough to suffer in one’s own struggle, the rock that keeps one from moving will break. 

    C.D. Baker in his story, Remembering Stardust, tells of a young man Oliver Good, living in a small Pennsylvania town from 1965-to 1966, during his Junior and Senior years in high school.

    Oliver is raised in a fundamentalist Christian home, by a domineering father, and passive-aggressive stepmother.

    Oliver was tormented by nightmares of hell over masturbation and his sexual thoughts; he was “saved” at an early age; the minster tried to force him to give out fundamentalist literature in the hardware store he worked in, where the son of the owner was gay; and ultimately he was seen hugging an older woman and rumors flew of their relationship. His church, family, and the community turned on him.

    Slowly through the love of a Native American woman, and the love and care of his queer friend and friend’s father, we see the rock of fundamentalism–its judgment and narrowness begin to crumble and Oliver discovered there is more to life than fear. Oliver came to see a more Cosmic Christ, inclusive of all religious expression, non-judgmental, and loving of everyone.

    This story is a universal story of the journey of life, as we journey towards wholeness. Some of us get stuck at the beginning, others in the middle, but the ultimate goal is the acceptance of all of humanity, loving all, and caring for all.

    The Cosmic Jesus is the sum of all religious practices of love and offers each one of us kindness. The Cosmic Christ is the pure manifestation of God’s kindness and caring. There is no judgment in this Jesus, whose reflection is like that of the rainbow of spiritual expressions of love.

    Oliver’s story is my story. Raised in a fundamentalist community, where the Bible was the “true and absolute Word of God”, and finally when the rock slowly crumbled in my coming out, I found freedom.

     In that freedom came those with their chief weapon: The Bible, “the true and only Word of God,” telling me that one must believe in Jesus, be saved.” One can not be queer, or different, but conform to “their” perception of the Bible.

    Through the years of seeing young and old go through the same experience, I seek to show them the Cosmic Christ, the one who loves them without judgment.

    Recently I was hurt emotionally by an individual spewing out that same fundamentalist bull shit and the thought came, why not take off my spurs and retire to Palm Springs.

     Well sitting,  looking across the street in Palm Springs last week there was a homeless guy sleeping, I later encountered another homeless young man, mentally ill, and I knew my call was to leave my spurs on.

    This is an excellent book calling us to leave our fears behind, calling us to move out into the world of the stardust, a world of caring, expecting nothing in return. Deo Gratias! Thanks be to God!


Fr. River Damien Sims, sfw, D.Min., D.S.T.

P.O. Box 642656

San Francisco, CA 94164

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