Primitive religion is not believed, it is danced!

Arthur Darby Nock

Earth's crammed with heaven,
And every common bush afire with God;
And only he who sees takes off his shoes;
The rest sit round it and pluck blackberries.

Elizabeth Browning

Sunday, July 15, 2018

Welcome to the apocalypse

As a clergy person, I'd like to welcome you all to the apocalypse. Pull up a chair, and make yourself uncomfortable. If when you think of an apocalypse, you picture a scary, doom-filled punishment from above, you're not alone. Originally, though, apocalyptic literature existed not to scare the bejesus out of children so that they would be good boys and girls, but to proclaim a big, hope-filled idea-- that dominant powers are not ultimate powers. Empires fall, tyrants fade, systems die, God's still around.

In Greek, the word apocalypse means to uncover, to peel away, to show what's underneath. That's what this country has been experiencing in recent months. There's not been a sudden uptick in sexual misconduct and assault in our country. The MeToo and Time's Up movements are simply exposing what was already there. The male domination at the center of the sexual harassment issue is being revealed apocalyptically and in prime time.

Wokeness and policy change are a start, but not enough to dig out the full infection. This is why I welcome our moment of uncovering. We need to see how deep the heresy of domination runs, and then remind one another that dominant powers are not ultimate powers. So if those who came before looked to the Bible to justify their dominance, then let us look to it to justify our dignity. It's in there. Theology and liturgy are just too potent to be left to those who would use them-- even unwittingly-- to justify and protect their own dominance. And sometimes the origin of the harm really can be the most powerful source of healing.
                                                                                          NADIA BOLZ-WEBER:

Welcome to the spocalypse

Yep, we are right in the middle of it
Full blown

All our veneers are being stripped away
The masks are down

Who we are as a nation
As a political parties
As religious or spiritual people
As individuals

Is coming to the light

Call it what you will
The seamy underbelly
The stuff in the closet
The dark side
The Shadow lands

Sudden it is all out there’

The hate, the fear, the racism, the greed
The lust for power,
Just lust

Personified in the man who would be king
In children in cages
In young black men, dead in the street
In white supremacists marching with tiki torches
In powerful and not so powerful men acting as sexual predators
In religious leaders such as Franklin, Jeffries, and Falwell supporting the unsupportable

It is all out there
Kind of stinky and ugly

Where we can see it
And understand it
And release it
And heal it

There is no change without revelation!

This time of uncovering is when the Spirit gets to work
Cleaning up the mess
Draining the swamp in our souls

This time of uncovering is when we understand how small / big
We really are

This is when we can grab hold of
“ a big, hope-filled idea—
that dominant powers are not ultimate powers.
Empires fall, tyrants fade,
systems die,
God's still around.”

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