Sunday, December 6, 2009

CC2009: Finding Common Spiritual Ground

As we, the citizen-delegates, have returned home from St. Charles, IL and the Continental Congress, the road ahead has begun to be laid out before us. And we have been in constant communication with one another via secure communication channels, in order to lay out the maps of that road, and plan the work. For the Congress, and the soon to be released Articles of Freedom are not the culmination of our work; rather, they are the foundation and guidebook for the restoration of Constitutional governance for the Republic of the United States.

Part of the work we are engaged in now is making sense of the profound experience we all had at CC2009 and to integrate into our lives where we are now. The intensity of it is hard to describe, but many delegates called it an "emotional roller coaster", and many of us bonded as people do when they confront such an experience together.

For me, that bonding continues as I reach out to the "other Christians" who were present at CC2009. These are the ones, probably the majority, who are not 'dominionists" in any sense, and who are sure enough of their own faith that they do not have to impose their particular theology on others. Therefore I was delighted when a thread appeared at the delegates' secure site that addressed the issue of the loud but few Christians whose agenda at the Congress seemed to be less about defending the Constitution and more about calling those of other faiths "blasphemers" and "infidels."

Part of the discussion at this threat has been an exchange of letters between the loudest dominionist (whom I have discussed but who shall remain nameless here) and two or three other Christian delegates, who have taken great exception to his presumption in speaking for G-d and for them. They wrote with great passion about the depth of free religious expression they witnessed at CC2009, and they also wrote that they saw all of the delegates (with the exception of a very few) place their personal agendas to side in order to focus on "the higher purpose" for which we gathered. I was so taken with the vision of these "other Christians" that I responded on the same thread. Here is my response about the blessings that we had all observed at CC2009. (When I refer to the the chief dominionist, I shall call him Mr. I. For someone who thinks he has cornered the market on G-d, is certainly an idolater).

Response at "Good Grief Department" Thread, CC2009

Thank you for your vision of CC2009. Although my religious expression is completely different from either of yours, I, too, saw a good deal of free religious expression at CC2009. Some of it was too much for me, or too narrowly focused, and so I left the room several times. However, my expression of my religious liberty neither stifled nor ended the religious expression of others.

With my own contributions to CC2009 of well over a month's salary, I helped support the use of a room for a Christian Chapel, a place in which my prayers would not have been welcome by the likes of Mr. I; I did not complain and neither did I withdraw my support. I simply prayed in my own room, as was appropriate for me.

"These are the obligations without measure, whose reward,too is without measure, and the fruits of which may be eaten either in this world or the world to come . . ." There is no need for one’s piety to be seen for it to be rewarded. The fruit that ripens with time is the sweetest to taste.

Mr. I appears to have had a fit of pique because he was unable to impose his religious expression on those of us who disagree with his theology. But his viewpoint was amply aired by him, and by others. If Mr. I's religious expression was found wanting by some of us, surely that is his own problem, and does not reflect badly on the Congress itself.

In my experience, there was plenty of blessing to be had at CC2009, and those who were unable to see it because that blessing did not appear in the form they demanded are to be pitied; they have eyes, but are unable to see the Eternal Presence in those human beings who are not like themselves.

Our Rabbis taught: "Great is the Eternal Master of the Universe. For an earthly king puts the stamp of his likeness on every coin of the realm, and all those coins are alike. The Eternal Creator, however, has placed within each human being the Divine Image and Likeness, and yet no two human beings are the same."

It is upon us to rejoice forevermore at the myriad facets of divine understanding and wisdom we learn from each individual, each as unique as the snowflakes that fall upon the mountains in winter, and yet all of which together cannot express the infinity that is the Eternal Creator of the Universe.

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