Julian of Norwich understands evil this way: Evil is “everything that is counter to peace and love.”
Is taking away a law that guaranteed women the right to choose what to do with their body a pathway to peace? One can already sense, listening to the women speaking out about this disruption of the legal process and warning us of the consequences for women and even girls being forced to take to term fetuses of rapists and incest enforcers, that peace of mind is at stake. And peace of the republic.
Taking away a law that 70% of the country want continued and with a 49-year precedent is not a pathway to peace but a road to hatred and division and derision of law and the court who enforces it.
If people feel strongly about protecting the fetus, they should not have an abortion. And secondly, they are perfectly in order to try to convince others not to get abortions. Roe v Wade does not force any woman to have an abortion. Period.
It does provide that, should a woman choose to have an abortion up to the “quickening time,” it should be allowed to be safe for the mother.
We live in a pluralistic society. That means people of different religious persuasions and traditions—and of no religious tradition—need to allow space for others. That is the only way peace is possible. And love is possible.
There can be no peace and love in a situation of institutional violence. And it is institutional violence for one institution to dictate to all women what they can and cannot do with their bodies. The Supreme Court is capable of being supremely stupid and supremely oblivious of the rights of 50% of the human species and this situation is tripled when two male members of that Supreme Court stand accused of sexual misconduct against women with charges that have never been properly investigated.
Julian teaches that “it is in our nature to reject evil.” The evil of judges rejecting 49 years of legal precedence and presuming they know more than all the previous judges—republican and democratically appointed judges who upheld the law—is a sign of hubris.
It is not a sign of peace or justice or love.
See Matthew Fox, Julian of Norwich: Wisdom in a Time of Pandemic—and Beyond, pp. 41, 105f.
To read the transcript of Matthew Fox’s video teaching, click HERE.
Banner Image: “Overturning Roe v. Wade Will Kill Women.” Protest at the U.S. Supreme Court, May 2022. Photo by Gayatri Malhotra on Unsplash
Queries for Contemplation
Are you in agreement with Julian’s definition of evil? And with her observation that “it is in our nature to reject evil”? What follows from that?
Julian of Norwich: Wisdom in a Time of Pandemic–and Beyond
Julian of Norwich lived through the dreadful bubonic plague that killed close to 50% of Europeans. Being an anchoress, she ‘sheltered in place’ and developed a deep wisdom that she shared in her book, Showings, which was the first book in English by a woman. A theologian way ahead of her time, Julian develops a feminist understanding of God as mother at the heart of nature’s goodness. Fox shares her teachings in this powerful and timely and inspiring book.
“What an utterly magnificent book. The work of Julian of Norwich, lovingly supported by the genius of Matthew Fox, is a roadmap into the heart of the eco-spiritual truth that all life breathes together.” –Caroline Myss
Now also available as an audiobook HERE.