On January 20, the duly elected President is sworn into office during the inauguration ceremony following every presidential election. It is firmly incorporated in the twentieth amendment of the United States Constitution. With a few exceptions, the period that precedes that inauguration day in January is uneventful and routine.
What took place leading up to the day of this inauguration has been anything but uneventful. Officials are still investigating how a group of insurrectionists took siege of the U.S. Capitol on January 6 to stop Congress from carrying out its constitutionally mandated duty to accept the states' electoral votes.
Many insurrectionists attacked democracy because a "Big Lie” deceived them. A big lie is a technique usually used for a political purpose. It is a lie so colossal that no one would believe that someone could have the audacity to distort the truth so infamously. In this case, the "Big Lie" was that the newly elected president is the outcome of a rigged election that he lost by a landslide. With unrestrained rhetoric, the "Big Lie" spread through social media, with people in positions of power and influence backing it up for personal and political gain. A "Big Lie" can have detrimental consequences, as evidenced by the death and destruction resulting from the attack on the Capitol earlier this month.
There are, however, a couple of spiritual lessons for us in this phenomenon. First is the power of our words. Proverbs 18:21 reminds us, "The tongue has the power of life and death." Words are creative since they can be either life affirming or life destroying. Words can either build us up or tear us down.
A lie believed can act as truth and spread like wildfire unless neutralized by Truth. Thus, we should always seek to speak the truth and align with the "Truth" of who we are as spiritual beings. For example, many have accepted the "Big Lie" that we are born sinners and then sought to prove it through self-destructive living. The Truth is that we are all born as an "Original Blessing" and are here to express God's Divine qualities.
The second lesson and, related to the first, is we need to be open to changing the stories we have accepted in our lives. When we accept a story about ourselves, we label ourselves. When we buy into a label for ourselves, we create a fixed identity of who and what we are. Defending that identity can then become an unconscious impulse.
When we instinctively accept a story about ourselves, we take on a label that becomes so entrenched we constrict our ability to choose and reason. If we give credence to a story, no matter how good it seems (e.g., I am of X political party come hell or high water), we can cloud rational thinking when we make it our identity. When we limit our logical thinking, we can fall prey to a "Big Lie" that protects our identity even if it is contrary to facts and logic.
Whenever we act unconsciously, we set aside the wisdom and discerning power the Creator has given us. If we don't use that wisdom and discernment, it is as if we never had it in the first place. We have voluntarily short-circuited our power.
Therefore, we recognize the power of words, and we loosely hold on to our labels. When we do, we lessen our susceptibility to falling prey to a “Big Lie”, and are open and receptive to the Truth of who we are - limitless Children of God.
Peace and Blessings,