Wednesday, April 25, 2018

Spiritually Political and Argumentative (At Least With Myself)

When I decided to start this blog, I made the firm decision to keep this as a religious blog. I've been going through quite a lot with my journey in Faith lately. Learning quite a bit about my religion and myself. For example, I had no idea that I was a Hicksite Quaker until recently (of course I wasn't the only one in Meeting that didn't know that was specifically what we were...). I didn't know that there was more than one kind of Quaker, and that not all Quakers practiced Silent Worship. So, this blog is meant as an exploration of that journey.

The reason I have had to keep that in mind is that I also have a strong interest in politics and government. So my personal struggle here is how much I should talk about political subjects. Quakers in my tradition have long been advocates for Social Justice. Highly Political and deeply involved. My Faith informs and guides my political beliefs. So, where do I draw the line and say "Okay, this is purely a political rant. Not about my spiritual journey. It doesn't belong on this blog."

In my second blog I mentioned the Poor People's Campaign I felt confident doing so because while it is aimed at social and political change, it is fundamentally a religious movement. It's founder the Reverend Dr William Barber II is actually the speaker at the 2018 FGC (Friends General Conference) Gathering. The FGC is the parent organization for the New York Yearly Meeting. So the Poor People's Campaign is group that I know has the support of the greater Quaker community. I felt confident that I could classify it as not totally political. Or at least morally important enough to justify discussion.

We also have to consider that while I may be trying to keep things completely apolitical. There has been a tendency lately for previously non-partisan ideas and organizations to become suddenly polarizing. Just the other day I woke up and suddenly found an entire political party slamming the FBI... While there are valid reasons to distrust the FBI. Including their long term tendency to investigate Quakers because of our Anti-War beliefs. In this case it was purely partisan, and incredibly unexpected.

One of the biggest contributors to my personal debate is the Political Religious Right. They claim the morality of Christianity, but do not seem to be following in the steps of Jesus. I do feel called to oppose this group as necessary. However, I do not oppose their right to use call themselves Christian. I do my best to see that of God within them. I just feel that they have placed their Faith in second place to Power. I have an especially hard time seeing how it reflects well upon them that they currently support someone who is the exact opposite of Jesus, in the name of shortsighted political gain.

With all of this. I can't totally separate the Religious, the Social, and Political, when I make my posts. They are separate spheres, but there is some overlap normally (I personally am Liberal in all three spheres). On the other hand, it is perfectly possible to be Religiously Neutral, Socially Liberal, and Politically Conservative.

Like many Quakers I have a strong interest in politics, so I'm sure eventually I will give in and make a post that is fairly political. Or at least create a Politics section on the blog. For now, I plan on keeping this blog about my religious journey. For now.