A Spiritual Response in Times of Division

In any community, there will be times we find ourselves among people who don’t see the world the way we do. How do we hold on to our relationships with one another in such times? We teamed up with Friends General Conference and brought together several Quakers to share their thoughts on preserving a loving spiritual community in the midst of profound political discord.

Maintaining connections with others is important, even when we don’t agree with them. “I can’t know everything,” Jean-Marie Barch says. “If I really believe in continuing revelation, and I do, then I have to be willing to keep those doors of connection and communication open because in doing that there is space for me to grow but there’s also space for the other person to grow.”

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4 thoughts on “A Spiritual Response in Times of Division

  1. Wow! Quakers/Friends are most certainly my spiritual community (my spiritual home!) However, MRD (Modern Representative Democracy – which is actually *nothing* like the Ancient Greek idea of “democracy”) is my “true religion”, in the Latin sense of the word religio.

    IF (big “if”!) we are to live in “the age of reason” ipso facto we MUST live in “the age of contention”, for reason alone can give us opposing and yet valid answers. My own Holy Trinity of MRD is: abortion, euthanasia & capital punishment. There can be no middle ground, negotiated settlement of these issues, and yet each side speaks from a valid viewpoint. Eventually We The People have to discern/determine/decide what our laws say about these and other contentious issues. Whilst always allowing change in the future.

    Which is why MRD (and not some laws-written-in-stone) is my true religion. I am “bonded” (religio) to others by PROCESS, not by policy. The ability to agree to disagree agreeably is for me the ultimate manifestation of do unto others as you would have them do unto you. As long as there are processes available to both of us to overturn and/or reform any laws (proscriptions and prescriptions) each of us wish to impose on the other.

    Then it is truly not as I will, but as Thy will.

  2. Great topic. This was helpful to me. I want my meeting to Not assume that we all believe the same way on politics or religion . . . Many temporary attenders may have left us over the years because of small slights of assumption.

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