It is Christmas day. Walking through the snow back from my neighbor’s house I was thinking about Christianity’s historic de facto role as the conscience of society, those who “set the standard” and call people to it, those who judge what is right and wrong. And I was thinking about Christ, and how he said, “I did not come to judge but to save,” and again, “The Father does not judge anyone but has given all judgment to the son.” And then, “What you bind on earth is bound in heaven, and what you make free on earth is made free in the heavens.”
It seems to me, from these sayings, that a free being, as Christ exemplifies, does not become the de facto conscience of society, but rather an example of freedom and compassionate not knowing. I mean, never assuming to know what is the actual content and intent of another person’s heart — refusing to box them into categories but meeting their deepest levels with Love. To believe in God is to believe in ultimate intelligence far, far beyond ours, so intelligent as to allow freedom to all beings to work out their natures and hopefully learn some vital lessons that lead to becoming more compassionate, and thus healing human beings.
These thoughts undoubtedly lead to more questions then answers, but in the light of the current madness of defending and perpetuating systems that are profoundly affecting weather itself — and thus the entire global environment — we need to start asking courageous questions. And in the light of our social capacities to focus completely on short-term problems that affect our pocketbooks and ignore mankind’s rapid corporate plunge to the tipping point of catastrophic no return, we have a moral imperative to rigorously ask questions about out entire past heritage that has formed our way of perceiving life. Questioning is not the same as rejecting. It may lead to rejecting or adjusting, but it is a profoundly healthy thing. This is not a time for flights into a blind fundamentalism that seems to make sense of this all — as long as we shut our minds to every contrary fact, that is.
We understand that it is a psychological law that when a person or group focuses on their strengths alone and represses their weaknesses into conscious shadow that shadow grows in strength until we project it out upon others and make them our scapegoats to blame and drive away. So… why do we keep doing it and not challenge this psychic dynamic in our own souls, our communities, and in national politics? Right now South and North Korea are threatening and posturing, acting like two school yard bullies — as this seems to be the mental level of international politics. They are rallying their people’s consciousness to prepare them for yet another international bloodbath of intolerable human suffering. Why don’t we call them on it, why don’t leaders and spokespeople everywhere stand up and say, we won’t act like selfish children anymore?
We know that if the vast areas of arctic tundra start melting we are going to suddenly be in the deepest doo doo of radical environmental shifts that may take millions of years to straighten out, if ever, and yet, we allow our politicians to spend most of their time wrestling for political power instead of setting all differences aside and earnestly working together for mankind’s good. Why don’t we hit the streets and say we are done with this system, we need an entirely new way of being together based on harmoniously pursuing our deepest, human values?
We know the business world functions as a vast, international cash machine for the biggest investors with the most capital reserves, and that these days not much is trickling down to working families. And we know that ever-increasing economic growth based on increasing consumption is an absolutely unsustainable economic model, yet we don’t meet together in local groups to start questioning, researching, re-imagining the world functioning in new economic models that are win-win systems and that support quality of being rather than material acquisition and consumption.
The Christ we celebrate this Christmas exemplified an astonishing courage to go against the status quo, to teach truths that turned his current world order on its head. This “turn the world upside down” consciousness released flood tides of Love into the ancient world and transformed it. For us, now, in these times, if we dare to follow him, it has to begin with a complete cessation of being judges of others and moving into becoming spiritual revolutionaries, questioning everything, especially our deepest beliefs that form us. It has to come with a realization that only those who exemplify true spiritual vision and freedom have any basis to judge others, because they have experientially grown past judging at all, rather accepting all, welcoming all back to the open arms of complete Love and the freedom that inspires us to live generous, overflowing lives. These are essential aspects of the way of Christ we have long ago lost. May the increasing pressures and dire threats of our times call us back to the unwavering Light of Life within us, to true values… back to actually emulating that one who had the courage to turn everything around and upside down, no matter what it cost.