Some callings are not holy and others secular.
All things are sacred in the lives of those who are spirit led; that is,
subordinated to truth, ennobled by love, dominated by mercy,
and restrained by fairness — justice.
– Urantia Book
Probably you’re wondering – What we must do – to move up and beyond our Devout Materialism?
Well ! —
The above quote looks like a recipe.
Is this who we are?
Who we have been?
Subordinated to truth?
Ennobled by love?
Dominated by mercy? and
Restrained by fairness and justice?
I don’t think so
If we had been like that (a ‘spirit-led’ lot)
would we have treated the Native Peoples … and the Blacks
as we did … and as we continue to?
We would have treated them (and would now treat them) … like Family.
We would treat them decently.
If you hire a gardener, you will want to know – whether he can distinguish, whether he knows the difference – between the food-plants (and flowers) … and the ‘weeds’. Mmm?
This is an ability that is absolutely fundamental to the enterprise of gardening.
(and you would certainly require it in the person you hire)
A person grows from a society (or culture) … the way an apple grows from an apple tree.
A peach tree will (reliably) produce peaches … not lemons.
When I come across a person who is Strikingly Good … I think – they must have come from a good family. And I should think – they must come from a Good Culture.
But right now, rather than contemplating Personal Change, let’s just play a little Pretend Game –
Suppose you were granted a Special Dispensation one evening
and you were given a choice … about what everyone else would be like.
When you wake up in the morning – all your neighbors (and, in fact – everyone in the whole world) will be either –
a) Honest, loving, and kind
b) Deceitful, and completely selfish
And it’s completely up to you
(and you don’t have to change your own character)
You only have to specify your preference … a ?… or … b?
Would this be a difficult choice?
And – how about this? (same exact offer … except) –
You do NOT get to choose anyone else’s race or culture or nationality. That’s altogether above your pay grade.
(I did not specify to the contrary in the original offer; but now … it is specified)
Still an easy choice? Or are you starting to get uneasy?
What if (in order to have a good world to live in)
You also had to accept the fact that when you awoke next morning
Your own family members might be of Any Race?
(your only assurance will be – that they will be Decent – honest, loving, and kind)
Would you still play the game?
Is it more important to you
That the people around you … are like you?
Is that more important to you – than whether they are Good People?
It’s generally agreed upon these days that Discrimination
Is often used as a Stick; and that many people find themselves
At the ‘wrong end’ of this stick.
Discrimination is not always bad.
There is a saying, that – A scalded dog
Fears cold water.
It may happen – that a dog that has (at some time) had very hot water poured on him
May become afraid of having any water poured on him. Even cold water.
When this situation develops, the affected dog becomes unable to discriminate
Between water of different temperatures. Mmm ?
He may be unable – to dis-incriminate the water itself … from the excessive heat
Which the water may (or may not) be carrying.
After all – the temperature of a substance … is surely a more abstract thing
Than is the substance itself.
And this may be beyond a dog’s comprehension.
The point is – that the ability to discriminate … in this sense
Is surely not a bad thing.
When someone complains about “being discriminated against”
They mean that someone noticed that they were different in some way
(a different color perhaps)
and then used that as an excuse to mistreat them.
(to treat them in a way they that they themselves
would not wish to have been treated)
Bierce says (for example) – that aborigines are –
‘Persons of little worth found cumbering the soil of a newly discovered country.
They soon cease to cumber; they fertilize.’
This offers a view of brutal discrimination
(which, unfortunately, is not rare)
It is … Discrimination + Racial ‘Superiority’ + Brutality
(this is quite often what we mean – ‘Discrimination’)
When I weed my garden … I must discriminate … between the carrots and the weeds.
Even though the uprooted weeds are deliberately killed,
We do not consider it brutal.
It’s just Basic Good Gardening.
Just because Brutal Discrimination is (still) a reality on this world
(and is a Real Problem) …
That does not mean … that all cultures are the same.
All cultures do not, in fact, do an equally good job
Of providing their citizens with a good life –
Safety and security
Nor do all cultures do an equally good job of producing Good People
(loving, educated, kind, and honest)
When the White Man came to North America
There were quite a number of occasions when white children were captured by Natives
And then sold (to another tribe) as slaves
Or kept and raised as part of their family.
Then (years later)
When those (white) people were (forcibly) returned to their families of origin
They would flee … and return to their (adopted) “Indian” families.
Suppose you were (actually) wondering – “Which of these two cultures
(the white … or the “Indian”)
Was the better culture?”
(and not because you were plotting some mischief … but you simply wanted to understand …
With hopes of improving our Situation)
And you found out about these accounts
Of people who were once “white” … and then adopted into a Native family and tribe … then
Fled back to their Native families after they had been Returned to their white (original) families …
How would you make sense of such accounts?
I suggest that the straightforward way to interpret such accounts
Is that Real Live People were given the opportunity … to live as whites
To live as Indians …
And they came to the conclusion – that the Indian way of life … was preferable.
If it is ever legitimate – to regard one culture to be better than another …
This is where you would expect it to show up.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qCzFaOoM8ZA (10 children abducted by Indians and later declined to return to their family of origin)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nK5bSIg2QUk (abducted by Indians – Cynthia Ann Parker)
Should we (actually) think that all cultures are equally loving? …
And produce people who are equally truth-loving, honest, loyal, decent, and kind?
I think that’s nonsense.
A movie which illustrates this difference is
(a lovely film)
A literary reference is Conrad Richter’s “The Light in the Forest”.