Sept. 26 – Oct. 1: Theocracy, the Rise of Fascism, Animals & Climate Change

Each Sunday, we are offering a brief summary of the meditations from the previous week, as a kind of “index” inviting you to return to a previous meditation which may call to you.

September 26, 2022 Beyond Empire, Patriarchy & Theocracy: Women March in Iran & US. In this meditation, we salute the brave women (and some men) who are protesting the Iranian patriarchy who arrested a young woman for not wearing her hajib in what was deemed an appropriate way. She subsequently died in police custody. This mirrors the patriarchal court system of the United States which seems to think it has a right to dictate what women do with their bodies. Author David Korten calls this behavior the “dominator relations of Empire.”

“Mehdi: Amid Iran Protests, We Must Speak Out For Women’s Freedom.MSNBC.

September 27, 2022 Theocracy in America: An Historical Perspective. It is important to remember that theocracy has a history in our country. Even though many of the original pilgrims were fleeing religious persecution, they had no qualms about imposing their beliefs on others, even to the point of hanging four Quakers who had the audacity to preach their faith. Of course, genocide, slavery, racism and sexism have also been part of our theocratic and toxic masculine history.

September 28, 2022 The Italian Election and the Impermanence of Democracy. This meditation explores the rise of fascism as evidenced in the recent election in Italy of a far-right extremist, as well as the rise in America of the neo-fascist Proud Boys. With so many recent laws restricting voting rights, is America in danger of losing its status as one of the world’s great democracies?

Bull elk enjoying the sun. Image by Linda L. Delano. Used with permission.

September 29, 2022 Animals as Spiritual Teachers: Wisdom from the More-than-Human World. In this meditation we explore how we can learn much from the animal kingdom. Matthew Fox reminds us that they are truly “original blessings.” From the book of Job, we are reminded to “Ask the animals, and they will teach you. Ask the birds of the air, and they will tell you. Ask the fish of the sea and they will declare to you.”

September 30, 2022 Hurricane Ian, Community Building & Waking Up about Climate Change. As we think of those going through tremendous challenges in the wake of Hurricane Ian, we are reminded that we all need to come together to do what we can about climate change.

October 1, 2022 David Korten’s Forward to Order of the Sacred Earth. In this important book launched by Matthew Fox, Skylar Wilson, and Jennifer Listug, David Korten writes a compelling forward. He says, “Individually, we are powerless against the forces of death wrought by human greed and violence in humanity’s ultimately self-destructive war against life. Only by acting together as lovers and defenders of our Earth mother, will life prevail.”

Banner Image: Together We Will Change the World. Photo by Priscilla Gyamfi on Unsplash

Recommended Reading

Order of the Sacred Earth: An Intergenerational Vision of Love and Action
By Matthew Fox, Skylar Wilson, and Jen Listug

In the midst of global fire, earthquake and flood – as species are going extinct every day and national and global economies totter – the planet doesn’t need another church or religion. What it needs is a new Order, grounded in the Wisdom traditions of both East and West, including science and indigenous. An Order of the Sacred Earth united in one sacred vow: “I promise to be the best lover and defender of the Earth that I can be.”
Co-authored by Matthew Fox, Skylar Wilson, and Jennifer Berit Listug, with a forward by David Korten, this collection of essays by 21 spiritual visionaries including Brian Swimme, Mirabai Starr, Theodore Richards, and Kristal Parks marks the founding of the diverse and inclusive Order of the Sacred Earth, a community now evolving around the world.
“The Order of the Sacred Earth not only calls us home to our true nature as Earth, but also offers us invaluable guidance and company on the way.”  ~~ Joanna Macy, environmental activist and author of Active Hope.

Creation Spirituality: Liberating Gifts for the Peoples of the Earth

Fox’s spirituality weds the healing and liberation found in North American Creation Spirituality and in South American Liberation Theology. Creation Spirituality challenges readers of every religious and political persuasion to unite in a new vision through which we learn to honor the earth and the people who inhabit it as the gift of a good and just Creator.
“A watershed theological work that offers a common ground for religious seekers and activists of all stripes.” — Frederic and Mary Ann Brussat, Spirituality and Practice.

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6 thoughts on “Sept. 26 – Oct. 1: Theocracy, the Rise of Fascism, Animals & Climate Change”

  1. Richard Reich-Kuykendall
    Richard Reich-Kuykendall

    What I would like to comment on for this Sunday, is our Daily Meditation for September 29, 2022 which was on “Animals as Spiritual Teachers: Wisdom from the More-than-Human World.” One thing I wanted to share in terms of animals teaching us, is one of my favorite passages from Meister Eckhart. We hear him speak through the vehicle of Matthew’s translation of Eckhart’s original:
    “Every single creature is full of God
    and is a book about God.
    Every creature is a word of God.
    If I spent enough time with the tiniest creature–
    even a caterpillar–
    I would never have to prepare a sermon.
    So full of God is every creature.”
    Now that is Creation Spirituality if I ever heard it !!!

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    Our feelings are fused with the Earth, the Moon, the Sun, the Uni-Verse. Music & Vids from all cultures, all genres can bring to our consciousness… mirroring all these ineffable experiences. Beethoven said: Music is the Mediator Between the Spiritual and the Senses” Here are some I assembled this Sunday AM:

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    Regarding the hurricane, community building, and waking up to climate change: the hurricane’s terrible devastation will only highlight the insurance crisis in the state of Florida, which neither the governor or the legislature chose to address, being busy restricting free speech, voting and other human rights. Insurance companies had already either fled the state or made rates so high that many could not afford them. The local communities and charities from outside have poured in, which is a wonderful reflection of compassion and caring, allowing for the usual frauds. However, the basic problem of lack of insurance remains. Will this crisis, along with the dearth of affordable housing to begin with, wake enough people up to make the necessary changes in the voting booth? And the votes be large enough to overcome the structures put in place to deny the count, including a whole new force of voting police, and orchestrated threats against the supervisors of elections and their employees? I truly doubt it, and that is tragic for the poor and marginalized especially.

    1. Richard Reich-Kuykendall
      Richard Reich-Kuykendall

      Sue, Thank you for your comment. Its true that things don’t look good, so I understand you doubt that it will, but I still think that we must still work even in the face of bad odds. At least we will know in our selves that we stood for what was right…

  4. Avatar

    This past week’s Summary of Daily Meditations has been a good review of the serious existential theme of climate/environmental catastrophe that we’re all experiencing around the world. Since I personally became more aware/conscious a few months ago of this ongoing existential crises that we’re all experiencing around the world (even though most people are not seriously aware of it, or in denial), I’ve been dealing with an underlying sadness as part of my grief process. Besides my deep contemplative faith, what has been very helpful communally is reading the feelings and thoughts of serious environmentalists, social thinkers, scientists, and authors who have expressed themselves personally and honestly on this planetary/climate crises, and the imminent collapse of our global patriarchal industrial ‘civilization’, which has historically and accumulatively contributed to this modern existential crises we are all facing. Michael Dowd in his website, / Conversations, has interviewed about 87 of these prominent people the last three years, and some of them have written very important books on this very important dilemma facing humanity.

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