Spiritual Politics: Not Your Father’s Church And State.

Posted February 12, 2014

by Jerry Alatalo

“I cannot think of the present state of humanity as that in which it is destined to remain… Only in so far as I can regard this state as the means toward a better, as the transition-point into a higher and more perfect state, has it any value in my eyes.”

– Johann Gottlieb Fichte (1762-1814)

tetons 2-1There has been a movement in recent years to dovetail science and spirit which has led to a number of profound experiments showing that earlier unproven ideas about the realness of “supernatural” phenomenon are provable. Marianne Williamson, in her run for U.S. Congress in California, is perhaps, if one excludes the traditional clergymen who have served in Congress, the first spiritual teacher who is attempting to marry political science and spirit.

Those who have read any books by Ms. Williamson will be more excited about her political campaign than those who haven’t, because to imagine the political discourse she will engage in after joining Congress brings a sense of excellent possibilities. To the point, she will raise the level of discussion and debate in the moral and ethical dimensions, something that has been painfully absent in Washington, D.C.

When was the last time anyone heard a man or woman representative addressing the Congress or Senate, or on television during one of the many political talk shows, and suggesting a “return to love” – the title of one of Marianne Williamson’s books? Or suggesting that “the humanitarian concerns of women and children around the world must become placed at the top of the U.S. federal government’s agenda”?

Ms. Williamson is probably best known for her writings about the teachings in “A Course in Miracles”, considered a sacred text by many, and which has influenced the philosophical/spiritual lives of millions of men and women. She has suffered the inaccurate designation of her writings as “New Age”, which she describes as an effort to diminish her, and others’, status as spiritual workers, seekers, and teachers. At any rate, her candidacy, at 62 years old, has brought feelings of hopeful anticipation to the men and women that have waited patiently for higher morality and ethics in the United States’ halls of Congress.

“Yet the fact remains that war is a school of strenuous life and heroism; and, being in the line of aboriginal instinct, is the only school that as yet is universally available… What we now need to discover in the social realm is the moral equivalent of war; something heroic that will speak to men as universally as war does, and yet will be as compatible with their spiritual selves as war has proved itself to be incompatible.”

– William James (1842-1910)

She looks at this time in history as a time when the men and women who lived through the activism of the 1960’s and 70’s, including the transformational Vietnam War era, are seriously looking at becoming much more involved – again – in efforts to bring about good changes in society. In a parallel sense, the assassinations of Martin Luther King (MLK) and Robert F. Kennedy (RFK) and the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) were responsible for sending a chilling, silencing message to people who worked to bring about a new world where economic justice and peace are ascendant and the focus of governments.

Ms. Williamson sees that entire generation from the 60’s and 70’s now older and facing their mortality, so leaning toward re-entering the work toward a better society and world which the MLK and RFK murders, in an unspoken but fully understood way: “if we can kill these, we can kill anyone”, halted and silenced. One could predict that the men and women who were halted and silenced to some large extent from the fears produced by NDAA will come to the same point of re-entry sooner of later. Let us hope much earlier than the people who raised their voices in the 60’s and 70’s, and now wish to do everything possible before dying.

Those reading this are probably well aware of the reasons Ms. Williamson gives for her decision to run for Congress: de-democratization, a duopoly represented by Democrat-Republican (she’s running as an Independent), the overwhelming power of money in politics, lack of visionary public discourse, etc. She thinks the idea that spirituality has no relation to politics is an idea that has run its course, and is no longer relevant or contributive to improving the living conditions of people in America and around the Earth.

She does not agree that the Occupy movement was a failed effort. She points out that the entire population of Americans are now aware that there is a 1% because of Occupy, which has led to a new way of thinking about what is politically possible, including the very important moral and ethical arguments that have gone missing for too long. Her belief is that government is all about morality, in absolutely stark contrast to the present “legalized form of corruption” extant in Washington, D.C.

In this interview she speaks about the concept which religious traditions’ texts refer to as “illusion” or “Maya”, and the idea that since life is illusory men and women don’t need to become active in politics or other avenues to effect change for the better in this life. She responds that the illusory aspect of life doesn’t “give anyone a free pass” and that, during these times of serious problems – war, harmfulness, poverty, greed, etc. – it is urgent that “all hands are on deck”.

One could view Marianne Williamson’s run for Congress – her ability to articulate a spiritual dimension to politics – as the beginning of a certain “reinvention of politics” which since begun becomes unstoppable. She will be the next member of the United States Congress representing the 33rd District in California.

When listening to the interview, think about how any of the 535 people’s representatives in Washington, D.C. would react to what Ms. Williamson is saying – what their contribution(s) to the discussion would be – if they were sitting in the same room.

“The cause of the different opinions of men. That this difference is the effect of the uncertain signification of words; such as good, interests, and virtue. That if words were properly defined, and their definitions ranged in a dictionary, all the propositions of morality, politics, and metaphysics would become as susceptible of demonstration as the truths of geometry.”

– Claud-Adrian Helvetius (1715-1771)

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(Thank you to Women For One @ YouTube)

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