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, February 2, 2020

love will remain

“We are only just beginning to understand the power of love because we are just beginning to understand the weakness of force and aggression.”
B.F. Skinner, Walden Two

“I'm the caring type also. I care aggressively. That's just who I am.”
Salman Rushdie, Quichotte

What it about the lust for power?
What is behind this need to have power “over” others,
And why this need to use that power,
Often abusively?

This is the question that lingers in my head
as I watch camouflaged mostly white mostly men
parade through the streets

with one intent
to intimidate
to bully

that is the question
as I listen to right wing church leaders
back evil

as I watch those who claim to follow
the way the truth and the life
back a person who lies
support the minimization of women
exclude LGBTQI people
cheer the incarceration of vulnerable immigrants

This is the question
As I watch my country
Attempt to bully the world
Siding with other abusive nations

Why do husbands, sometimes wives
Abuse power?

Perhaps it is hardwired into our nature
With Adam and Even
Who had it all
Wanting more

Wanting to “be like God”
a wish for power

Perhaps it is something pathological
Something alien to our nature as
Sacred Children

Something found in all
A hint
But found in some
A drive a hunger
That defines
And shapes

Becomes a gun packed
A fist curled
A harsh word spoken

Perhaps it is
As some suggest fear

Those swaggering camo clad
Gun carrying
Slogan shouting
White power symbol toting
Facades hiding


That they are losing
That they are less
That they are not superior after all

As if equality were not enough

And yet there are different kinds of power
Power over
Is not the only option

There is aggressive compassion
Aggressive kindness
Aggressive love

Paul once reminded the early followers
“Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves..”  (Phil 2:3)

Asking those who would walk in the steps of Jesus,
To truly walk in the steps of Jesus

“who, though he was in the form of God,
    did not regard equality with God
    as something to be exploited,
but emptied himself,
    taking the form of a slave,
    being born in human likeness.
And being found in human form,
    he humbled himself
    and became obedient to the point of death—
    even death on a cross.”  (Phil. 2:6-8)

the bottom line is this
straight from God’s heart

those aggressive ones
who use force
to create fear
to dominate and control
to minimize and subdue

do not show their strength
they simply show how frail they really are

strength is not to be found on the streets of Richmond, Virginia
Or in the White House
Or in the US Senate
Or in drones

Strength and power are to be found
In the woman who sits by the bed of her dying friend
In the sons who also sit
Holding their mothers hand

True power is held by
The one who is strong enough to listen
Strong enough to give
Strong enough to forgive
Strong enough to lift the other up
Strong enough to be vulnerable
And love

It is an odd kind of power
A cross kind of power

But in the end
When dictators and their kingdoms
Have fallen
The kingdom of love
Will remain

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