You claim this is a Christian nation,
Which means a practice of love and merciful consideration.
Yet I cannot see proof of this enacted creed,
but something opposite, derisive,wholly obscene:
Where Jesus fed thousands who failed to bring their lunch,
You would starve millions – children, elderly, those who do work but can’t claim much.
Where Jesus healed the infirm at the first asking,
You deny the same any kind of care or compassion.
Where Jesus refused to judge, and preached the same in scripture,
You complain, place blame, testify that some are simply lazy creatures.
Where Jesus displayed contempt for the corrupt and hatred for injustice,
You embrace these heartily while spewing lies that shift the focus.
Where Jesus overturned tables and openly abhorred greed,
You worship Mammon with gusto, keep your money in piles behind doors of steel.
Where Jesus exemplified love and unity,
You damage with pure divisiveness, then flit around deceitfully.
Where Jesus accepted without question the stranger and the prisoner,
You deny them with malicious prejudice and disdainful reasoning.
Where Jesus might have built a prosperous City on a Hill,
You destroy democracy, sell out lady justice like a two-bit shill.
So, spare us the self-righteous narrative,
Throw off the coat of pretending.
At least own who and what you are –
A faction full of forked tongues, willing to ignore Jesus’ missionFor the sake of self entitlement and blatant power grabbing ascension.
Tag Archives: current events
We claim to be a nation conceived by God,
Blessed by virtue of Holy support,
But it seems we’ve been abandon, left under the charge of Mammon.
I offer such observations as these for proof:
An opioid epidemic enabled by
Doctors wooed by corporations,
Lawmakers wooed by the cherished dollar.
Millions of Americans in a prison of addiction while
Mammon pulls levers, then turns nobs
in order to maximize His earnings.
A gun lobby that encourages violence.
Causes us to turn inward upon ourselves,
Killing our own, racking up a body count
That even combined wars can’t touch;
Mammon gleefully collects His gold
From dutiful firearm makers and sellers.
A culture “war on Christmas”
In effort to keep pure a singular Holy Day
Layered upon Holy Days,
Yet we fight, grab, push, some even die,
In order to get those shiny Black Friday deals;
Mammon has never been so well fed.
Men of God preach from t.v. thrones
or stages of megachurches.
Their message feels contorted to
Some modern ideology where helping yourself
means blindly supporting them,
Instead of the homeless, instead of the abused,
instead of the sick.
Mammon laughs and laughs at this clever ruse,
and counts His gold at night with gluttonous hands.
Just a few examples of a misaligned religion,
Where we claim to be capitalists during the week
While displaying contrite gratefulness on Sundays
To a god that blesses and gives.
A god who’s name is Mammon, not Yahweh
A god who has become fat upon greed and hypocrisy
A god who presides by permission
thanks to human adoration of the holy free market,
where decency, sympathy, and cooperation are damned.
Praise be to Mammon, god of the United States of America.
It took me months to admit I might be Sensitive. I hated the idea since the admission seemed to carry with it a connotation of weakness. As I’ve learned more about the trait and living the life of an HSP in our hyped up world, I’ve adjusted my thinking.
I suppose it seems weak if a person can’t sit through violent movies. I suppose it appears to be weakness if a man chooses to go home after work instead of going for a drink with the guys. I suppose it looks as if a woman is weak if she becomes overwhelmed quickly in a highly stimulating environment. I’m sure it must suggest weakness if a person is constantly empathizing with others instead of getting on with life.
While all those scenarios are true of HSP’s, it must be remembered that we don’t like or do those things because of a weakness, we behave this way because our wiring. Which means most of what we do requires a level of bravery that others don’t need to employ.
It’s a brave soul that moves beyond the constant fight or flight tension to engage with a stranger and get to know them. It’s a brave man that speaks out against an observed injustice in the workplace. It’s a brave woman that disciplines her involuntary empathy to pass up a relationship with a narcissist. It’s a brave person that notices the oddball in the crowd and pulls them in to feel more comfortable. It’s a brave individual that pushes back the fear and reaches out to help, teach, guide, and care, because we don’t just see the suffering around us, we feel it as equally and as vividly, and we’ll do damn near anything to ease the suffering in this world.
It’s a two sided coin for sure. HSP’s appear to exist along the sidelines, preferring less exposure since we’re already inherently exposed; yet we often lead the way in situations that necessitate diplomacy, empathy, and the ability to see details while simultaneously observing the big picture. The only way we have the ability for doing so is by literally ignoring, or overcoming, or swallowing the energy of every alarm system going off within us. Such acts require a deep well of bravery that only HSP’s possess.
We are the bravest of them all.
We’ve entered a strange era for a nation where facts are of little meaning and truth is distorted without consequence.
If you’ve tried to have a conversation with someone who still supports a Trump presidency, there’s a high probability that many of you experience the inability to find some tiny common island of truth on which you can agree. It seems that the only thing agreeable is that we can all identify as Americans, and even that concession is tenuous.
For a long while I’ve been baffled by the ability for many, including leaders of ‘the church’, to ignore reality and cling to strange, somewhat mythological concepts such as “God can use even a corrupt man”.
Then it came to me: Part of the agreement in being a Christian is that there’s only one source of information from which to base a world view. Only the Bible can provide real answers. Only the Bible can be the source for history. Only the Bible offers a moral code for society.
There is consequently an entire population of American citizens who are programmed to refuse any new information simply because it doesn’t come from the Bible. Anything outside the holy writ is considered blasphemous and is not to be weighed. There is no room for curiosity, no appeal to questioning, no allowance for new evidence. It’s a closed and very regulated environment, as most religions are and must be. Outside sources are quick to prove them wrong, or at least mistaken, and would shatter the thin foundation upon which the belief is built.
Since curiosity was killed on the altars of religion, it makes complete sense to me as to why so many are willing to buy into FOX, Breitbart, Hannity, Limbaugh, and Jones narratives – there’s no reason to question their assertions, nor is there a desire to discover if they are presenting the truth. These are minds that have become accustom to just receiving information without weighing its worth, and if a talking snake can steer mankind down a road of licentiousness, then yes, Donald Trump, corrupt as he is, can be affirmed by god to the highest office of the land in order to fulfill some vague biblical purpose.
I am trying to find ways to bridge the gap and encourage conversation, but without a desire to heed facts or consider a differing perspective, it’s nearly impossible to have a healthy, productive discourse.
While it helps to understand why there’s such a resistance to truth among a certain number of our fellow citizens, I’m not sure where this leaves us overall. I wouldn’t worry about it except the US has lost a great deal of respect in the world’s view, and the legislation coming out of the current Congress would send us into third world status, and we want to pass to our children a viable, healthy democracy for their future.
I am open to suggestions. And always hoping that, somehow, reason would save us from becoming another crumbling empire.
May truth will out…
My arms and hands ached for nearly two weeks after the election of Donald Trump as President of the United States. They were weak; merely holding my cell phone caused discomfort and texting was severely curtailed. I needed both hands just to open the door to my Jeep. I thought I was having some serious carpal tunnel problems and was about to go to the doctor, except the pain finally subsided and I seemed fine again.
The occurrence made sense to me about three months later when I was sitting in my therapist’ office and confessed that maybe, as she suggested, I was sensitive. It took me months to admit the possibility – the idea seemed a complete antithesis to the other characteristics I knew about myself: I was outgoing and an extrovert, I was strong and had endured some difficult challenges in my life such as working through the grief of experiencing the full-term stillbirth of my only daughter. In every job I’ve ever had, I am always driven enough to work my way up to some supervisory position. I didn’t perceive myself as weak, but considering the idea that I was sensitive certainly seemed like an admission of weakness, yet there I was in the therapist office, checking the ‘yes’ box in response to most of the questions on the HSP assessment. (The questions themselves seemed a self-description: Do you prefer to have music off when driving? Do you stay home after a day’s work rather than go out with the office? Do you stay away from violence and violent movies?) The term ‘off the charts’ was applicable to the final outcome of my responses to the questionnaire.
I immediately grabbed hold of anything I could read about the Highly Sensitive Person and was astounded at some of the things I learned: It’s an actual genetic trait. HSP’s make up about twenty percent of the population. The trait exists in other animals as well.
I was relieved once I had more information. It felt as if several questions I had about myself most of my life were answered: Why am I the only one noticing small details about situations and settings? (I admit I was really sort of judge-y towards others when they didn’t notice the same things I did, I have since adjusted my thinking.) Why did it seem like I think way more than others do? Why why why did it seem that sensory overload was always something I had to deal with – did I have adult ADD or something? How can I be outgoing and sociable and still be sensitive? (turns out there’s a small percentage of people that are both extrovert and HSP).
Many aspects of my life seemed to fall into place and the picture I have of myself is much more complete after acknowledging that I was Highly Sensitive. Now it’s a matter of learning to live with an entirely new perspective. I understand that the tendency to over-react to negative circumstances is something I can acknowledge as trait-related and not take things as personally or as seriously. Instead I try to observe it from a neutral point of view, “Oh yeah, that’s the Sensitive part of me, it’s okay.” I can utilize the hyper-observation of circumstances in order to notice that a certain student is behaving in a subtly different way and be able to offer help. I understood immediately that the ability to notice details and nuances is absolutely why I can write – only in the deep observation of a thing can we then describe it well. And a big light went off when I figured out that all that pain and ache in my arms after the election wasn’t mysterious at all, it was a physical reaction to the knowledge that I knew our nation would never be the same, and that there was a collective heartbreak at the reality of a Trump presidency.
It’s a process to figure out ways to work with this new information. I am especially challenged, and willing to bet that many of you are as well, with the day to day dealings of the current political climate – we sense and feel the stress of millions of others and it takes great discipline to keep such stress from taking up residence in our soul (here I am eternally grateful to Headspace for guidance in training the mind).
I find some solace in reading about other’s experiences as well, which is why I’ve decided to write about it myself and the way it impacts a person’s life. You may not be an HSP, but the information is valuable inasmuch as you most likely know someone who is. If you are an HSP, my hope is that these writings will encourage, enlighten, and offer strength.
Here’s to new information, and the ability to allow it to transform.
It’s a shock to see young white American men giving the Nazi salute and holding up swastika flags after having fought against fascist hate. It’s a shock to see them turning on our fellow citizens, physically harming their human brothers and sisters who live and breath alongside them. The problem is, we don’t really have time to be shocked at this particular moment.
How do we navigate the all normal human response of shock in this critical time? We have to admit it first, just notice it. Denying it will only lead to a festering anger, but we don’t have to pick it up and hold on to it either. If you’re an empath, or possess the trait of being Highly Sensitive, then this is a particularly difficult challenge. It can be accomplished however. Acknowledge the feeling, that’s it, then move on to action.
Action is where we can awe ourselves and each other. There’s plenty around to inspire us. Twitter is busy with people helping to identify the perpetrators of Nazi hate in Charlottesville. And while it’s disappointing that our President refuses to condemn white supremacy, there are plenty of other politicians taking up the sword of justice for him. Many gathered together yesterday to show support for those killed and injured.
Across the nation, today, we have the opportunity to show the same support, demonstrate love and acceptance, sow the seeds of kindness and peace. It’s up to each one of us, shocked as we are, to awe our neighbors and friends with positive action. And in the doing, we find that shock doesn’t have to render us paralyzed, and love can lead us to unity.
I vividly remember one dark Idaho winter’s night as my teenage self was writing in my diary, I thought, “What’s the point of even thinking about what I want to do for a future when we’re just gonna blow ourselves up anyway?”
I took some comfort in Billy Graham when he came through my hometown area of Boise, Idaho and said ‘Nuclear war won’t be the end of mankind, there’s the rapture instead.’ or some platitude thereof, forcefully spoke, affirming the cyclical prophecy of “Our national leaders are provoking a war but the bible says there’ll be wars and rumors of wars and great destruction like Armageddon so it’s all good.” I mean, I can see now the pseudo-peace religion brings , back then the words sort-of helped.
Back then there were cancellations of Olympic games and Gorbachev and Reagan enjoying some dance of power vis a vis ‘strong language’ and ‘diplomatic warnings’. No one really wants to blow up half the planet, so there was a lot of bark, but not so much bite; until this President.
I know he’s unhinged, one need only look at his twitter rages to figure that out. I know he’s full of hyperbole and as Scott Adams vociferously posits, Trump always opens with the most insane highest bid, and negotiates down from there. Problem is, international diplomacy is an entirely different board game than monopoly. At the moment my only confidence in anything is maybe a cautious Congress and General Kelly as Chief of Staff who probably understands more than anyone else in the WH the actual logistics of war.
None of that mattered when the old fear of nuclear war came crashing down after Trump made his “fire and fury” announcement toward North Korea. “Breathe” I told myself. “Cooler heads and minds will prevail,” I thought, with some confidence. Then I realized that my fifty-something self doesn’t have to be frozen with fear like my teenage self was.
I have the power and knowledge to deal with this fear. I understand that humanity probably learned a lesson after Hiroshima and Nagasaki, and most of us (including our leaders) are reticent to re-live something similar. Where there was some international support for a nuclear attack on Japan, thankfully, today there’s international opposition to nuclear options, and some of our leaders still care about optics. I have the ability to call my congresspersons and hold them accountable, they are my employees after all. I have power in the freedom to write and encourage others to understand that fear need not be picked up and carried around. It can stay swimming in the stream of consciousness without being caught, taken home, and devoured. I am now aware that action deters fear more than any other recourse, I will act with my keyboard, with bridge-building discussions, with the knowledge that others are doing the same. Solace is acquired with action.
So while this nation once again visits the specter of nuclear war, and for a moment that fear of no future came crashing down upon me, my adult self is confident in action instead. I wish the same for you.