The machine is grinding us into food for the system. Fight the system. Fight the machine. It is not your friend. 
Sage Against The Machine.
Libertarian Humanist.

Mercy Versus The Law

December 24, 2018

What is Christmas?

  • The birth of Jesus?
  • A melding of pagan winter holidays?
  • Gift giving?
  • A holiday of lights and good cheer?
  • Santa Claus?

One thing is certain: billions of people celebrate it every year. I try to imagine that sometimes. No matter what it means to them personally, it usually involves getting together with some people and eating a meal.

The meal. I love thinking about people coming together to eat. It is so beautifully human. We stop working or fighting or being alone and have a meal together. It's lovely.

I feel like where some holidays are about being thankful, Christmas is about having hope.

The Christ child is born. The darkness is turning the corner. Everything is going to be OK. Maybe not today. But someday. That's what hope (and faith) is. Things are hard now. But fear not. It is all going to be ok. In 6 months we will be in the warm sun again.

Hope is merciful. Hope says, "Don't worry. Everything is going to be ok."

However, in their Christmas sermon, I imagine some ministers will find it hard to resist saying something like: "For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten son."

They can't resist. They can't just allow the hope to just be. No. "Just so you know, it's cool we have the birth of Christ and all. But, spoiler alert, he's going to die a painful, terrible death at the hands of humans."

This is the law.

This is what the law does. It keeps people in line. It punishes bad behavior. It fears mercy.

"If we just tell people they are good and everything is ok they are going to run amok."

"After all, we know these people are just this side of wild beasts. All their fornicating and drugging and drinking and over eating. They're animals. We must keep them in line."

We have done this since the beginning of society. And I'm here to tell you: IT NEVER WORKS. Yet the leaders never learn.

They will say, the problem isn't mercy and compassion. The problem is that we have been TOO merciful and TOO compassionate and TOO lenient. We need more laws. More punishment.

What's amusing to me is how it's not merely the leaders doling out chastisement and shame. Ordinary people love to do it in some of the most harsh and cruel ways.

You only need to read some of the comment threads on my posts on Facebook to see it first hand. It's like they are looking for a fight and to cast judgement. I think about cleaning them up. I am trying to be an island of kindness and compassion and people invariably come to the party to let us all know that there are terrible, unforgivable people.

What amuses me is that I haven't even gotten to the truly difficult people. I haven't even begun talking about the truly difficult people that will test our ability to find compassion and forgiveness. So far I've just discussed homeless people and those plagued with addiction. They should be the easy ones for whom to find compassion and empathy.

The thought seems to be we must carefully meter out our compassion. Like it's a pie or something. "If I give love and compassion and understanding to this person then I'll be fresh out of love and compassion and understanding for someone who truly deserves my love."

Let me be clear. The people I'm talking about are a very small percentage of people I encounter. (Although, they are probably the majority of society.) The VAST majority of you are so wonderful and kind and beautiful. You are enlightened and on a path that transcends common societal morality.

Because, you see, the people who judge and cast aspersions are getting it right from the top. The people in charge are standing right behind them with every hateful, angry judgement.

Society hates the homeless and the drug addicted.

Incarceration, Substance Abuse, and Addiction | The Center for Prisoner Health and Human Rights

In 1980 there were 40,900 people incarcerated for drug offenses; by 2013, this number increased to 489,000.

Some Summit County townships have made it illegal to hand anything out of your car window, in a cruel effort to make panhandlers disappear. Cincinnati made it illegal to sleep outside. And of course Akron is threatening me with fines and criminal charges if I don't completely destroy the tent village we created for the homeless.

It's no wonder where these angry, hateful people come from. We live in an angry, hateful country.

If you can't afford your water bill, the city will shut it off and then they will condemn your house because it doesn't have water. You will then be homeless if you have no family to take you in. And then they will chase you around town telling you that you can't sleep where ever you were trying to sleep. "You should get a house!" they'll shout at you.

Hatred is often right below the surface of most humans. Laws that benefit the rich and powerful play into that hatred. So we lock up people that are suffering from addiction issues and we ignore and isolate our most poor citizens. It's just so the rich can have a lovely playground where they don't have to look at nasty and unsightly poor people.

I've never found that hatred does anything other than eat me from the inside out. Hatred is a rot. It is a disease. And worst of all, it is highly contagious. It spreads like wild fire. At very least it wells up hatred for the people casting out the original hatred. It just goes round and round. Getting bigger and bigger.

Conversely, love is delicate and fragile. It quickly fades away. We must constantly send out endless love for it to stay in the air. It's like a wisp in the wind.

My message is this: at least for one day, Christmas Day, see if you can let go of the judgement. Resist the urge to tell people they are living wrong or thinking wrong or praying wrong. For one day, try to let peace and hope fill your mind, body and spirit. After all, this is how we will solve all the world's problems. Judgmental laws will never get to the heart of the problem like love will.

Merry Christmas. I love you.

Paid For By The People for Sage Lewis

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