01 Oct Healing Our Wounds
As we enter into October, what is your inner state? What is our collective state? I ask this question not out of some desire for us to measure ourselves and others, to either congratulate or condemn. I ask these questions out of a sense of spiritual responsibility for the whole. I think that it is pretty obvious that our collective state is rather stressed and toxic. We have limited power to correct this reality. We do, however, each of us, have an essential role to play in either helping to bring healing or dis-ease to the whole.
Think back to the collective circumstances of Jesus’ life and ministry. His people suffered under foreign control. They had a corrupt king, exploiting his own people in order to serve his own desire to cozy up to Rome and to seek his own enrichment and greed. The Zealots wanted to take arms and find a leader, a messiah, to physically drive the enemy out. The Pharisees believed that if they could engineer religious purity, God would act to drive the Romans out. The Essenes despaired of the whole culture and escaped to the wilderness to form their own pure and separate community. While Jesus, identified more with the Essenes than with any other group, he did not totally identify with anyone. He blazed his own path.
What was his path? Nonviolence. That’s why he was a disappointment to the Zealots. Radical inclusiveness and a lack of attention to religious purity. That’s why he was opposed by the Pharisees. Courageous and sacrificial engagement with the culture. That’s why he did not stay with the Essenes. What Jesus did was attempt to bring an entirely different energy and vision into the mix, which trusted in spiritual or energetic movements rather than in enforced political and religious solutions. He sought to change the energetic field in which all activity takes place, introducing such energies as “love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, generosity, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control,” to quote from Paul’s enumeration of the fruit of the Spirit in Galatians 5:22,23.
I know. These seem rather soft in the face of such widespread anger, fear, mistrust, and corruption among us. There is a collective panic among us of, “we must do something!” I am not against thoughtful and brave action. Jesus demonstrated both. What he understood deeply, however, was that until we heal our souls by tapping into the only fountainhead of life among us—that presence of God within and among us—all of our efforts will be grounded in the wrong energy of self. To bring true healing, we too must be tapped into the source of all life and healing. We would do well to look at ourselves and ask, “Are we radiating healing energies of courage and compassion in our world, or, are we spewing toxic energies of fear and anger and judgment?”
Whatever your point-of-view, this moment is requiring much of us. It is asking us all to wake up to our collective fall from healing spiritual realities into the narrow and ultimately narcissistic confines of the self. It is asking us to learn again that our lives are not ultimately about us, but about our service of forces and purposes much larger than ourselves. Our lives are about our part in releasing into the collective universe the transforming energies of sacrificial love and service.
Trust, sisters and brothers, that whatever darkness and disruption and evil, that we encounter in the weeks and months ahead, that we are not alone, and that our work is not in vain. You alone can know what is yours to do in this fragile time, but know that the most important part of your work will be evaluated by whether you are releasing healing or toxic energies into our atmosphere. Draw near to Source and take courage. I am holding us all in deep prayer, trusting in the life which Jesus radiated into our universe and continues to offer to us all. May Christ’s life radiate in and through us!