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Monday, September 21, 2020

A Vision of Now

This morning I saw a vision of our politics as if a caricature of a Shakespearean play. There are basically two teams in this play who are acting out their parts in the extreme. There are fans who cheer their team on as if home town football teams in their tie breaking final game of the season. There is frenzy. There is hyperbole. There is the ridiculous. There seems to be no extreme too far.

The purpose of the play is to entertain, to call forth strong emotion, and keep people busy so they don't see behind the melodrama. Most of the power is in the background with the permanent class. Actors come and go, but directors, producers, writers, costumers, camera crew, make-up artists, special effects experts, etc stay on for many decades.

If they can rile us up enough, they can control us, our emotions, and our actions. The most controlled resort to violence, especially violence against their own interest, such as destroy small businesses that serve their community, destroy statues of cultural heroes like Fredrick Douglass and General Grant, and even maim and kill those on the other team.

Philosophers and theologians have long spoken about removing the concept of "other." We are all part of the human family. Compassion is often a description of a spiritually awakened person. 

However, the play performed for us demeans religion, reignites racial hatred, and takes us to opposite corners, ready to square off.

I suggest we look at this fiction for the last time and turn to reality, jumping off this wild ride. With calm minds we can discern what is most kind and helpful. We can remove outside controls and turn to what we already know is right and just and do that. 

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