Sunday, July 30, 2006

Spiritual activism--passing this on


A message from Phyllis Curott of Temple of Ara; this is from their quarterly newsletter. Reposting because I support Ara's and Phyllis' work, and because I figured it'd make a nice change of tone 'round these parts.

"One person can make a difference."

With each passing day I have rewritten this letter, moving from joyful personal and Temple news to a deepening concern about the conflict in the Middle East.


By the time this email reaches you, I'm sure circumstances will
have changed yet again. But I'm not optimistic that they will have
changed for the better. You're probably having the same
conversations I've been having--wondering how bad things will get
and what the solutions might be.

To find a solution, you need to understand the origin of the
problem, and that is no easy matter--history both ancient and
modern, land, money, and poverty, egotism and the hunger for power,
and of course religion and fundamentalism. Where does one start?

Believing that one person can make a difference, I've been very
involved with the Network of Spiritual Progressives lately, serving
on the Clergy and National Advisory Boards and speaking frequently
with the organization's founder, Rabbi Michael Lerner. The other day
we were talking about the contents of an ad to be run in major
newspapers, calling for peace. I joked to Michael that this war is
what happens when God doesn't get laid, and Michael laughed, saying
that I should put that in an ad in the NYTimes. Some people would be
offended, some would laugh, but how many would really understand the
sorrowful truth behind the humor?

God is alone, and so are we. The world is out of balance. In the
beginning, the Bible says that: "We created humanity in our image,
man and woman we created them." WE in OUR image. In the beginning
there was God *and* Goddess, El as God is referred to early in the
Bible, *and* Asherah as the Canaanites (Uritic) *and* the early
Israelites both called their Mother Goddess. In the beginning, there
was unity, there was balance, and there was love. But over the years
that balance, the essential wholeness that is divine love was lost.

It seems to me that that is the real but hidden force driving
this world-threatening dispute. That is the source of the wound at
the center of Western Civilization. It is a wound that grew out of
three compounding cosmologies where "we" became "He"--a solitary,
often angry, punishing and absent Father God, a wound shared by all
three religions--Judaism, Christianity, and Islam. When God exists
without Goddess, masculine without feminine, when the world exists
without the presence of the Sacred, humanity without divinity,
confusion, pain and violence are the consequences. When religions
justify killing because they have the "One True Way," they have no
way at all. They are no longer religions; they are nothing but
depraved politics.

When we cannot see the Divine in one another, we give ourselves
license to kill. Were we to recognize the Divine in one another, we
would be empowered to love.

Sounds like utopia, especially given the current conditions. Is
there time to bring about such a radical shift in perceptions, in
culture, in religions? I don't know. But I know that we must act as
if it is possible--because the Divine comes into the world through
each and every one of us. With that realization comes profound
responsibility: we have no choice but to respond from the full
measure, power and beauty of this truth.

Understanding the core origins of the current explosion of fear
and fundamentalism, violence and suffering is the starting point to
finding the genuine, long-term solutions that everyone instinctually
knows are vital. But it's not enough to analyze intellectually, or
respond emotionally. We must counter the bloody politics of
fundamentalism with the spirituality of immanent divinity.

And we must restore balance with a contribution of feminine
energy, moving around the full circle--from idea to courage and
determination, then to compassion and love, and finally to hard work
in cultivating the seeds of a new vision, honoring God *and*
Goddess. This path always returns us to the center of that circle,
the point where heaven and earth are one. The place where and the
moment when humanity and Divinity recognize one another, where *you*
stand, seeing clearly, responding courageously, feeling deeply, and
acting purposefully. The center is where you can look at yourself,
and the Other, and declare from your heart "You are God/dess."

One person can make a difference. I hope you continue to thrive
and grow. And in this time of violence perversely justified by false
religiosity, I also hope that you will join us in cultivating a new
spiritual reality to heal a wounded world.

Peace, love and blessings,
Phyllis Curott

18 comments:

CrackerLilo said...

This is absolutely terrific. I really admire Phyllis Curott. And I didn't know you could get a newsletter from her. So thank you!!!

Oh, and I'm representin' Brooklyn! :-)

belledame222 said...

w00t! whereabouts in Brooklyn?

yeah, if you sign up for the mailing list, you get all the updates; the website is a bit under-maintained. actually your fastest bet is probably to show up at an open ritual and give your name to the person maintaining the list directly.

speaking of, btw there's an open Lugh celebration on Wednesday night; if you're interested drop me an email and I'll forward the details.

Anonymous said...

ordering ambien online ambience mall gurgaon kids zone - ambien side effects stories

Anonymous said...

buy zolpidem tartrate zolpidem tartrate generic ambien cr - zolpidem 10 mg apo

Anonymous said...

buy zolpidem can you buy ambien over the counter - zolpidem tartrate generic side effects

Anonymous said...

can you buy xanax online buy xanax online now - xanax overdose toxicity

Anonymous said...

buy diazepam diazepam no prescription usa - buy diazepam with mastercard

Anonymous said...

best place to buy xanax online xanax pills - buy cheap generic xanax online

Anonymous said...

buy xanax no prescription drug get off xanax - generic xanax 3mg pills

Anonymous said...

ambien for sale no prescription ambien cr buy from canada - buy cheap ambien online no prescription

Anonymous said...

buy ambien online drug interactions with ambien - what is zolpidem ambien used for

Anonymous said...

buy soma buy soma online us pharmacy - soma 350 mg erowid

Anonymous said...

buy ambien online ambien cost per pill - ambien cr cost without insurance

Anonymous said...

buy ambien online zolpidem side effects in men - how to buy ambien online

Anonymous said...

buy generic valium no prescription valium japan - is it legal to buy valium online in australia

Anonymous said...

generic carisoprodol soma drug while pregnant - soma drug generic

Anonymous said...

can you buy ambien online buy generic ambien no prescription - ambience mall gurgaon videos

Anonymous said...

valium drug generic valium names - 50 mg valium effects