Tuesday, June 5, 2018
“Self-absorption in all its forms kills empathy, let alone compassion. When we focus on ourselves, our world contracts as our problems and preoccupations loom large. But when we focus on others, our world expands. Our own problems drift to the periphery of the mind and so seem smaller, and we increase our capacity for connection - or compassionate action.”
Daniel Goleman, Social Intelligence
We all want safety
We all want comfort, even affluence
We all want influence and power
Not a problem
Unless what we want causes our world to contract
To narrow down until we cannot see past ourselves
And cannot see past this moment, this place
And then our natural desires become unnatural
There comes a point
Where we become willing to do all manner of evil
Just to get what we want
Our desire for wealth becomes so strong,
And our focus so narrow
That we forget
We forget the earth
We forget other people
We forget the poor, the ill, the elderly
The stock market soars!
Trump is God!
But in our selfishness
The cost exacted for that success is terrible.
The poor are neglected
The earth is abused
We have sold our souls for short term gain
And we have created long term pain
We have pushed out way down the path to
Whatever sordid goal we have created
But have pushed some aside,
And simply trodden on others
How long will we accept this essential selfishness
Sold to us by those for whom money is more important than people
O Lord, how long shall the wicked,
how long shall the wicked exult?
They pour out their arrogant words; all the evildoers boast.
They crush your people, O Lord, and afflict your heritage.
They kill the widow and the stranger, they murder the orphan,
and they say, “The Lord does not see (Psalm 94)
Since the beginning
It has been clear, that we must all get where we are going
The way of the Sacred is not a way where the strong enjoy their strength
And neglect “the little ones” (children) and “the least of these” (the vulnerable)
Privilege is an opportunity for service
Not an opportunity for abuse
“You shall not wrong or oppress a resident alien,
for you were aliens in the land of Egypt.
You shall not abuse any widow or orphan...
If you do abuse them, when they cry out to me, I will surely heed their cry” (Ex 22:21-23).
Children, especially immigrant children
The LGBTQI community
Those suffering from mental illness
These little ones have a special place in the heart of God
And if we succeed
In becoming rich
In creating radical safety
In becoming the most powerful nation on the earth
But narrow our focus down
And kill our empathy
And erode our compassion
And abandon them…..