LOVE IN ACTION
“There’s a powerful force for change in America,” says Christian leader Serene Jones, “but powerful forces oppose it. It’s a battle that is as much spiritual as political.” Does this statement ring true for you as it does for me?
How do we deal with a spiritual crisis? How do we respond to the increasing anger, fear and violence in this country? What should we do when this divisiveness and hatred are being blatantly perpetrated and energized by, of all people, the President of the United States?
To counter these dark forces Marianne Williamson and other leaders call for us to stand for love “as effectively and as passionately and with as much seriousness as that which is now being demonstrated by some who hate.” In this powerful interview with Anderson Cooper she says, “We can't just love people like us or our own children. We must stand for the children on the other side of town. We must stand for love for children on the other side of the world.” Citing the President’s call to “Send them back” when referring to elected Congresswomen, she says, “We don’t do this in America.”
What are our values anyway? What are the principles we cherish in this country? What do we stand for as individuals, as Americans, as members of the human and Earth community? If we love democracy, if we value respect and civility, if we love our kids, the Earth and all life that dwells here, then we must stand up for our beliefs, take action and engage the spiritual battle.
Rev. William Barber says it’s not a matter of right versus left. It’s a matter of right versus wrong. It means resisting powers that demonize, belittle or bully the “other.” As Jack Kornfield says, “This is not about red or blue. It is about standing up for the most basic of human principles, for moral action and the prevention of harm.”
Rev. Dr. Serene Jones says, “When we’re told there isn’t enough money to help the millions of Americans who live in poverty, but we can give billions to the wealthiest among us, we must be vocal about our basic belief that a society’s worth is measured in how we care for the most vulnerable, not how rich the rich get.”
Dr. David Suzuki asks this haunting question: "What kind of a species are we?" In an interview (link below) he is speaking particularly of his worry for his children and grandchildren. How is it, he wonders, that we seem not to care enough about their future and the well being of life to destroy that which sustains us?
As human beings we have a choice to make: Will we stand for love, and act from that place, or will we allow the cruel and destructive forces to escalate? If we choose the latter, then that’s what we stand for. By doing nothing and allowing these forces to continue we are tacitly saying it’s okay to demonize, marginalize, demean, abuse and insult people.
As a nation and a globe, we are going through divisive and painful times. Now is the season to stand up for what matters. To stand against hate. To stand for respect. To stand for protection of the vulnerable. To care for the natural world. —Jack Kornfield
We must act. We must engage in the affairs of our government, cities and communities. We don’t have the luxury anymore to be “apolitical.” We must engage and "act-out" Love. Whatever we do or say needs to come from a place of caring, compassion, generosity, connection and inclusion. We need that kind of a moral uprising in this country.
Those of us who love must now love with the same conviction that is demonstrated by those who hate, because conviction itself is a force multiplier. We have to stand for love.
Further Reading and Listening
Anderson Cooper interviews Marianne Williamson. “We don’t Do This in America.”
[My note: Citing this interview does not mean I am promoting Marianne Williamson’s candidacy for President. I am supporting and urging you to listen to what she says because it may move you as it did me.]
"An Uprising in Decency," an Op Ed in the NY Times. August 1, 2019.
Jack Kornfield, “Moral Action and the Dharma.”
Rev. Dr. Serene Jones, “Will We Open the Door or Close it?”
Interview with Dr. David Suzuki
Back to Blog