“A house divided against itself cannot stand,” said Republican icon and great American, Abe Lincoln, in his Gettysburg Address, during our bloody Civil War. Truer words were never spoken; we can all agree it seems obvious. A transcendent truth.
But how seriously do we take those words? Whatever your political persuasion, what are you doing to contribute to either dividing or trying to repair our “house?” There are many forces trying to keep us divided, using the age-old strategy of “divide and conquer,” using hate speech and fear as primary weapons.
Lincoln also beseeched us to follow “the better angels of our nature.” Lincoln was deeply spiritual and introspective, and I believe this was not a simple metaphor but a reference to a greater spiritual dimension to our beings that, if we neglect, leads to such conflicts. The power of love is believed to be stronger and certainly more constructive than hate.
Fear and hate lead to and are associated with producing death. Love and compassion contribute to life, healing and social harmony. To be rigid and unbending in one’s ideology is to risk breaking at some point in a storm of conflict. Flexibility and being able to bend in our limited perspectives to another’s is a trait of a healthy life force that will survive.
Another transcendent truth, as an example, is no one is responsible for how or where they came into this world. Therefore, they cannot be judged or be an object of punishment for it. We are all children of God, equal in God’s eyes. One who is born into better or different circumstances has a natural desire to be compassionate to those suffering, if they are being motivated by love.
Let us all commit to repairing our house, being guided by powerful love and compassion.