Recently, I re-watched the 2015 speech that Pope Francis gave to a joint meeting of Congress, and indirectly to the American people. His message, among other things, was for the United States to use its power to heal the “open wounds” of a planet torn by conflict, greed, poverty, and pollution. The Pope implored us to "move forward together, as one, in a renewed spirit of fraternity and solidarity, cooperating generously for the common good."
The Pope's words struck a high note for unity, despite the controversial issues he addressed during his talk. Ironically, shortly after the Pope left, his primary audience went back to business as usual - a cycle of paralysis and divisive politics. The common good appeared to have been lost in the shuffle.
What impressed me about the Pope’s message was that he was clear on where he stood on the issues and challenges that we face in our world today. While I didn't necessarily agree with every position he took, I appreciated the clarity of his intentions, perspectives, and his stance. It got me thinking. What should a spiritual-being and planetary citizen stand for in today’s world? I imagined they would say something like this:
“I stand in the belief that each of us is a unique, unrepeatable gift to our world.” We are here to find our purpose and be those gifts to our friends, families, loved ones, businesses, communities, and the organizations we are part of.
“I stand for releasing the misguided belief that we are less than the great persons we're destined to be." We may have expressed less. We may have identified ourselves as being less. But we are never less than the great persons we are meant to be.
“I stand in believing we are here to make a difference.” We are here to express the qualities of the people we admire and who have made significant contributions to others, their organizations, and communities. If we can see those qualities in someone else, it has to be in us.
“I stand in holding that we are to usher new ways of being in the world.” We are to midwife new ways of leading, new ways of handling conflict, and new ways of meeting the challenges and crises in our lives and our world.
“I stand for creating a new definition of success.” This definition has something to do with being of service to an idea bigger than ourselves. When we serve something bigger than ourselves, we get everything that we need.
If we were to follow the above principles, we would move toward healing those open wounds that the Pope referred in his speech. We can't rely on the government alone to do it. The work begins with you and me.
We must be instruments of the Spirit. If we aren’t making this a way of life, then we cannot look at the challenges and project them onto the government officials and politicians. They simply follow the lead of the consciousness of the country.
When enough people rise up, see spiritually, and practice these ideas and ideals, the politicians will follow.
Peace and Blessing,