We are Born in Original Blessing

We are Born in Original Blessing October 20, 2010

It was ex-Dominican and current American Episcopal priest Matthew Fox who coined the term “Original Blessing” for the idea that we are are not born in sin but in blessing. He is of the opinion that there are two Christianities in the world, and he has chosen the kinder, more inclusive one.

There is this strange idea that the world is bad, the material is wrong and that denying that is being escapist. If we are not lost souls seeking redemption we have no purpose, no meaning. How foolish are we to say the world is good and full of blessings? How unhealthy is that? To tell people they are good, right from birth? To say what matters is how you treat others?

What is good and right about ascribing to any system of belief that teaches you to tell people they are inherently flawed, evil and sinful? What is possibly pure and holy about submitting to a doctrine that says you bear a curse, a stain or an unholy defect from birth? How is a God who tells you that it is only by convincing others of their own unworthiness that you may truly serve him? How can you use the word love when you preach hate?

How can a religious movement call itself a bastion of morality when it blames the victim and rewards the perpetrator of hate? When it claims that the effects of being treated hatefully are actually caused by some internal defect in the victim?

People are leaving organized religion in droves. 34 million adults claim no religion whatsoever, yet many of them are concerned with matters of faith and spirituality. Why is this? Because in a world of beauty, kindness and blessing, who wants to subscribe to a doctrine of hate?

Who wants to belong to a community who says that they are less of a human being because they were born female? Because they were born gay? Because they were born intersexed? Because they were born with a different skin color?  Because they don’t dress like you? Because they don’t listen to the same music you do? Because they eat foods you don’t? Because they don’t find Divinity in the same way you do? Because they don’t see Divinity at all?

What a strange set of criteria. It’s insanely petty. Is this a criteria created by cruel teenagers? By the kind of person who throws a slushie in the face of anyone who is different from them? What kind of insecure bully needs to create such divisions so they can divide the world into the holy and the unclean?

I am proud to be part of a faith community where you are judged by how you treat others. In my faith community your morality is dependent on who you love and include rather than who you hate and exclude.  You are not expected to be the same as everyone else, which is why we are growing with converts from other traditions without proselytizing. You’re only expected to behave as a person born in “Original Blessing”: loving, inclusive and gloriously human.

This post is written in response to Stigmatizing Truth, Destroying Lives.

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