?

Log in

No account? Create an account
athgarvan

CAN THE STATES BE UNITED AGAIN?

The States have just endured one of the most divisive elections in recent memory. The country is splintered, wounded, and deeply hurting. In times of conflict like this, people instinctively gravitate to one of two behaviours: to unify, or to divide.

It is usually easier to be a divider than a unifier. It takes less effort.  Being a unifier requires strength and maturity. Unifiers inspire others with their courage, patience, and kindness. They lift up those who are feeling afraid and anxious. They try to understand. They defend those who are vulnerable. They help others understand.

People often don’t respond well to calls for unity. Unifiers are often attacked from both sides. They’re accused of compromising. They are ridiculed and told that they don’t have the courage to fight for truth. But unifiers reach out. They ask questions. They try to understand and find truth and understanding by engaging with those who think differently. They debate respectfully and in good faith.

This problem of unifiers versus dividers is not something new. We hear of it in the Gospel:

"Always be ready to give an explanation to anyone who asks you for a reason for your hope, but do it with gentleness and reverence, keeping your conscience clear". (1 Peter 3: 15-16)

"All bitterness, fury, anger, shouting, and reviling must be removed from you, along with all malice. Be kind to one another, compassionate, forgiving one another as God has forgiven you in Christ". (Ephesians 4:31-32)

Comments

Thank you

we know who the divider is
the uniter may be an old man from Vermont
may he be given strength and light
This, I think.




Desiderata

Go placidly amid the noise and haste,
and remember what peace there may be in silence.
As far as possible without surrender
be on good terms with all persons.
Speak your truth quietly and clearly;
and listen to others,
even the dull and the ignorant;
they too have their story.
Avoid loud and aggressive persons,
they are vexations to the spirit.
If you compare yourself with others,
you may become vain and bitter;
for always there will be greater and lesser persons than yourself.
Enjoy your achievements as well as your plans.
Keep interested in your own career, however humble;
it is a real possession in the changing fortunes of time.
Exercise caution in your business affairs;
for the world is full of trickery.
But let this not blind you to what virtue there is;
many persons strive for high ideals;
and everywhere life is full of heroism.
Be yourself.
Especially, do not feign affection.
Neither be cynical about love;
for in the face of all aridity and disenchantment
it is as perennial as the grass.
Take kindly the counsel of the years,
gracefully surrendering the things of youth.
Nurture strength of spirit to shield you in sudden misfortune.
But do not distress yourself with dark imaginings.
Many fears are born of fatigue and loneliness.
Beyond a wholesome discipline,
be gentle with yourself.
You are a child of the universe,
no less than the trees and the stars;
you have a right to be here.
And whether or not it is clear to you,
no doubt the universe is unfolding as it should.
Therefore be at peace with God,
whatever you conceive Him to be,
and whatever your labors and aspirations,
in the noisy confusion of life keep peace with your soul.
With all its sham, drudgery, and broken dreams,
it is still a beautiful world.
Be cheerful.
Strive to be happy.

Max Ehrmann, Desiderata, Copyright 1952.
i had this in mind when i wrote
He wasn't a Quaker afaIk, but he often feels like one. :o)
Plenty of scope for reflection there! Thank you.

America hasn't been really united since WW2.  We tend to squabble in good times, and the more petty the squabble, the better the times.

Oh that many a so called Christian would remember those teachings.
I don't know; we just spent 8 years of a party literally doing everything they could trying to attack the party in the White House. They literally had a meeting the day of Obama's inauguration to decide to oppose everything he did in the effort to get him out of office even when it meant trying to not help get us through the Great Recession.

I will preface that it would be difficult to unite when the person you're supposed to unite against literally wants to harm you and appears to be literally filling their government with racists and white supremacists/nationals.

The bigger question is why isn't Trump trying to create a unity government? Not even a government with a bunch of Democrats in it, but his proposals for his advisors are almost all deplorable. Currently we have General Flynn (an apparent racist Islamophobe who thinks that Islam is a cancer and not a religion); Steve Bannon who is a rumored anti-Semite and the publisher of an "alt-right" white nationalist website, and an attorney general who was denied becoming a judge based on being a racist. His VP is my current governor and he had been in favor of terrible anti-GLBTQ legislation as well as "conversion therapy."

Add to it claims for an unconstitutional Muslim registry and it is pretty clear that Trump isn't trying to unify the nation.
by their fruit so you shall know them

and that's the fruit on the Trump tree