Sunday, November 22, 2015

Today's Thoughts

Following a long and anguished night wherein the thoughts of the chaos in our world and the horrors of the jihadist’s movement robbed me of sleep, midway through this day I felt the need to write in my prayer journal.  Without thought or planning, these words spilled across the pages:

I’ve said “God doesn’t need us, but we need God” . . . what I mean by that is that we NEED God at the most basic level—to exist at all; the breath we need every second in order to continue to live is there, supplied for us and we need do nothing but breath the oxygen our body requires.  Who or what is God?  We can’t know, the Creator of the Universe is so beyond knowing to our limited human intelligence . . . but life IS, we experience it, and all that is needed for life’s continuance is there . . . we did nothing to have it be, yet its reality is undeniable.   I choose to say it is God’s gift to us—being is a gift of God!  Who or what is God?  I don’t, I can’t know—but I can know I have life and it is sustained minute by minute by all that surrounds me; and that IS God because no human action gave nor gives it being . . . the Mystery that is, is my God that gives life and all that is needed for its continuation.  Mystery God choses to share that with me and invites me to be part of it and even to contribute to it if I so choose.  What I choose is what I have the opportunity to offer . . . God doesn’t NEED my offering, but I can add to God’s being by giving of myself in the effort to further the good—for the good IS God.

Saturday, November 7, 2015

Part of a Greater Whole

I want to expand on a comment made to the 7th of my Teilhard series (10-1-15).  It reads:  “Yes, we are co-creators with God.  Not many people grasp that.  We create our own reality, which gives us the opportunity to create something different if we don’t like what we did the first time.”

As stated, that seems to be addressing our individuality, but beyond that Teilhard is asking us to realize we are also creating as part of a greater whole.  Our world is one interdependent, interacting system which functions for better or worse by the choices we collectively make.  Here too we can choose something different if we don’t like what we are faced with.  Human choices determine the direction of the world’s progress.  Our exploration in space has shown us what is hard to grasp from our individual perspectives—we are one whole interacting system and when one part is injured or harmed the whole suffers from the damage.  Until we realize that, we close our eyes to the damage that occurs beyond the circle of our own interests.

During the early part of WWII, history tells us that initially, as Hitler invaded one European country after another, we in America adopted a policy of non-involvement . . . until Pearl Harbor was bombed, then the entire nation rallied to a total involvement as never seen before.  Men women and children were committed to fighting the ‘scourge’ of Nazism—men joined the services, women went to work in defense plants and school children sold defense stamps and war bonds while pulling wagons from house to house to collect useful things for the war effort.  When America united with allied forces that common cause led to victory—the scourge was defeated and annihilated.  That historical event demonstrates what is possible from united effort.

There is another scourge now threatening the very core of civilized society!  The jihad movement has thrown the Middle East into turmoil; millions of people are fleeing the destruction, many drowning at sea trying to escape in unsafe boats after paying their life-savings to human traffickers.  The hordes of refugees that make it to safety are met with anger and resistance because their huge numbers strain the resources of the countries to which they flee.

This is not a local problem, not a nation’s problem, not a regional problem, this is a global problem and the world must address it as such!

Our world is faced with a multi-headed monster . . . a rogue culture that has as its goal, the annihilation of civilization; a culture which delights in sheer destruction and seeks to eliminate freely chosen self-government so as to install its form of enslavement.  The many-headed monster shows itself under different names but its body is jihad—reveling in terrorism and malhuman acts.  TV has shown us their treatment of dissenters: from flying passenger planes into the twin towers, to deaths by stoning, beheading and mass executions.  Girls are forbidden education and hundreds have been abducted and sold as ‘wives’ into sexual slavery.  Boys are narrowly educated by rote memorization of religious treatises.  Jihadists carry out killing of whole villages of noncombatants.  The looting of artistic treasures helps support their activities and they gleefully destroy irreplaceable ancient cultural
artifacts simply to show distain for other cultures and values.  All their actions defy humanitarian values.  Jihad is a cancer on this planet; the civilized world must unite against all forms of its expression.  In this scourge, pure evil is once again threatening civilization.  It is critical that we see our planet as one whole interacting system and give support to the beleaguered parts of this greater whole that is our home.  The sum or our choices will determine the shape of our future.