Monks brawl while cleaning Bethlehem Church inspires this blog. The spectacle of men who have devoted themselves to living a holy life whacking each other with brooms in a dispute over cleaning the Church of the Nativity is educational. People are human. Sometimes they forget the larger goal in petty disputes. We can't feel too smug, because this is a failing all of us have.
The same thing has been true of Congress in 2011. Instead of trying to find solutions to the nation's problems, the GOP members decided to oppose the President at each and every turn. They refused to enact measures necessary for the nation's health and prosperity. Instead of cleaning house, they've been whacking at another with brooms...they've been manufacturing issues, like the national debt and defaulting. They seem to think this is the 1990s and that there are no real problems in the country that they need to address.
Politics and religion have a lot in common. Both are efforts to control people, to enable them to live together in harmony...to make them better. Because both deal with large issues, they can be controversial subjects. They stir up the emotions and make it that much more likely that people will start whacking one another with brooms.
2011 treated us to the spectacle of women, small children and peaceful protesters being sprayed in the face with pepper spray in the name of the social order.
Unfortunately, 2012 will be a Presidential election year in the USA and due to a recent ruling by the Supreme Court, there will be no spending limits. Expect huge amounts to be spent on TV advertising by anonymous groups with patriot-sounding names. Lies of all stripes will be pushed in our faces.
The rule is divide and conquer. I can only appeal to my friends of all political stripes: don't let them divide us. There is only one way to defend the faith and that is to live it one day at a time. Even if a political ad resonates to your emotions, stop and try to look at it objectively. Don't hurl the broom at some other person just because the TV tells you that person is less than human.
We are all human.
This is the first blog of 2012 and also the 8th blog of Christmas. Happy New Year!