"The Christian must discover in contemplation, and in the giving of his life, those symbolic actions which will ignite the people's faith to resist injustice with their whole lives, lives coming together as a united force of truth and thus releasing the liberating power of the God within them." - James Douglass, Contemplation and Resistance.

Thursday, August 18, 2005

Our Refusal to Suffer

The root of violence is our refusal to suffer for the truth. We want to bypass the weeping face, the outstretched hand, the inconvenient child. These things diminish our fantasy, the fantastic life that we seem to approach so closely.

The silence in the face of the crimes and mistakes which were so eloquently listed on Imitatio Christi (http://imitatiochristi.blogs.com/imitatio_christi/) in "What Would It Take?" is the silence of complicity. We don't want to admit these crimes because our silence and tolerance of a corporate media that veils them behind noise and nonsense is a part of them. Emotionally, we can't adjust to the dissonance that has grown between what was the winning ideology and the real grief that our actions have caused. How cruelly it punctures the carefully cultivated image of our goodness. And how often have we surrendered to this image? How often have we preferred to be entertained rather than informed by the nightly news? How much have we really cared about the blood on our hands?

Like Bonhoeffer in the 1930's, we may soon have to make a choice. For him, "the time is very near when we shall have to make a choice between National Socialism and Christianity." For us, the choice between following Jesus and allowing this administration to drag the noble name of "evangelical" through the blood of a 100,000 Iraqis may be as stark.

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