random musings...

Tag: politics

Where there is love there is hope

Many of the people I love are in deep pain this morning. Many of us this morning are fearful and grieving. We are wondering where we find hope for the future as we awake to the surreal reality that our country has elected the candidate of homophobia, xenophobia, misogyny, and white supremacy. The candidate who has promised to take away affordable health insurance and any implement any number of other policies that will prop up the power of white, straight, rich men to the detriment of anyone who isn’t that.

I can’t yet wrap my brain around it. I don’t understand it. I am discouraged and saddened. I am particularly discouraged that those who identify as evangelical Christians seem to have overwhelmingly voted for this new reality. Nothing about this is Christian. It doesn’t come from an ethic of love your neighbor, the core of the true gospel. It instead screams hate and fear your neighbor. That form of so-called Christianity cannot die fast enough.

Although, for now, I may be struggling with my faith in humanity, I do still have trust in my God. I still trust that love wins in the end. That is the true meaning of the irrational message of resurrection. And, yes, it is irrational. If I were being rational right now I’d have to give into the despair. I’m not willing to do that. I choose to put my trust in the belief that love wins in the end. Love is the very core of our being, even those who choose to live out of their fear. I’ll put my faith in love.

We have a lot of work to do. Things may get much worse before they get better again. There may be even more new realities to deal with in the next months and years. It will take time to try to understand each other again, to forgive each other. But we must.

Take time to grieve and then remind yourself that there is still love in the world. And where there is love there is hope. Then let’s redouble our efforts and get back to work.

The American Shadow

Have you ever had a dream in which someone was chasing or attacking you? In dreams like this the attacker represents our Shadow, where we shove all of those aspects of ourselves of which we are ashamed, hoping that they never see the light of day. When the Shadow shows up in our dreams it is basically our subconscious telling us that some repressed part of ourselves needs attention. The world-renowned Jungian analyst Robert Johnson wrote that if the Shadow gains enough energy “it erupts as an overpowering rage or some indiscretion that slips past us; or we have a depression or an accident that seems to have its own purpose.” An out of control Shadow “is a terrible monster in our psychic house.” In other words, the Shadow escapes our nightmares and becomes a real life problem causing pain and disruption for us and those around us.

Donald Trump is the Shadow of American culture. He is the nightmare that reminds us of the misogyny, racism, xenophobia, islamophobia, etc. that lurks just below the surface. We’ve tried to deny and repress these aspects of our culture. We’ve tried to claim that women are given equal treatment, that black lives already matter, that we welcome the stranger, that we offer religious freedom, but Trump is revealing the falsehood of our delusions. He is our Shadow demanding attention. He is an eruption of rage, an indiscretion. As the raging Shadow, it’s not surprising that his entire persona has no real substance. He doesn’t offer plans or ideas but only anger and vague, grandiose boasting. It’s not his function to solve anything but only to demand attention.

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