-- Fr. Bede Griffiths
I don't want to end up simply having visited this world.
-- Mary Oliver
What a miracle it is that we have, as likely as not, breathed the same air as both Fr. Bede and Mary Oliver! This possibility truly tickles me! It is amazing thing -- an absolute miracle in point of fact -- to be alive!
And! Everyday we have the option, better, we have the opportunity to lovingly take the world into the arms of our prayers and our actions. This availability can become the very center of our daily living: living on the side-lines of our lives should no longer be an option... we have been adorned with bodies to give form to our souls... and we have been born into an axial-age with the authority to make a huge difference by means of our lives.
Yes. I wrote that last line as I had intended: authority. In other words, these times in which we live authorizes us to live into the vision of an earth of shared dreams, of shared resources, and of shared power-in-compassion... This is genuine authority... The authority of domination, exploitation, and oppression is absolutely contrary to any sort of life in faith: if your religion blesses and / or excuses greed, sexism, racism, planetary destruction, or violence to achieve its ends then it is not religion that you follow but an ideology in service to the acquisition or the maintenance of privilege, profit, and power. This can never be called a "spiritual life"...
Consider: a few profoundly rich people and multi-national corporations live in reverent service to the Dominator Paradigm ("what's good for me must be good for all")... This Dominator Paradigm operates in endless pursuit of the aforementioned privilege, profit, and power: you do not matter, and neither does democracy, to this paradigm. And as is increasingly obvious, the Earth itself does not matter: not the air, not the water, not the soil, and not the creatures... The economics they employ is bald predatory capitalism. The culture they subscribe to is male-dominate, white, and heterosexual. The means they use are oppressive, media-manipulative (it used to be called brainwashing), and violent.
Authority: instead, you are authorized to acquire a vision suitable for the times... you can choose to cultivate partnership, cooperation economics, social equality, a practical nonviolence, earth regeneration, and simple living (with "enough" and "mutual aid" as organizing and motivating means and ideals)... Global justice is not a pipe dream: it is an actuality waiting for your authorization. Eco-feminism, a green economics, nonviolence, and communities of consciously cultivated pleasure are within the reach of this century: they need only your effective authorization!
No "just visiting" allowed: it is time to get a little of that rock'n'roll spirit and "get all shook up": goddamn it but if you are reading this you are alive! This matters as much as anything else in the Universe. Engage in the work of personal and social transformation. Every moment is a "theophany", a "showing" of the Divine... Mary Oliver wrote, "It is not hard to understand where God's body is. It is everywhere and everything." In other words, as you live the Beatitude Insights, slowly, yet steadily, everything will change. Here it is: Jesus said, "The Kingdom of Heaven is within you." His teachings authorize radical living, radical prayer, and radical practice... so drop the "just visiting" attitude, tribe-up, change your mind, and build the earth worthy of our children. You are the Second-Coming that Jesus longs for!