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

Saturday, February 2, 2019

how to be despicable

“There are so many ways of being despicable it quite makes one’s head spin. But the way to be really despicable is to be contemptuous of other people’s pain.”
 James Baldwin, Giovanni's Room

I sometimes believe that when we are at our worst
Is when we feel our best

And that when we are at our best, is when we feel the worst

Because too often, our peace comes at a terrible cost
It comes when we close our eyes
Close our minds
Close our hearts

It comes when we neglect
Or worse
When we are contemptuous of other people’s pain

When in order to justify it
To justify our refusal to respond to it
we choose to believe they earned it
They deserve it

And then we are despicable

And there are a million ways to be despicable
We can choose the way of hate and fear
We can choose the way of abusive power
And obscene wealth

We can choose to judge
Choose to exclude

But the worst thing we do
Is to refuse to see that person in front of us
We just don’t see them
We see them as colored
Or Alien
We see them as drunks or addicts
As mistakes
And felons

But we don’t see them as people
We don’t value them
And we don’t feel their pain

And it is in that moment
When the image of God in us becomes blurred
Hideously vague

For the bottom line of Jesus birth, life and death is this

God always feels and respects our pain
No matter what

Even the pain of a thief on a cross
Who from a human perspective, totally deserved what he got

You will be with me
In Paradise

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