Rome (aka the USA) is burning! In some places literally. In most other places, the nation is experiencing an increasingly volatile burning from the inside. What was called by the founders of this nation, “The United States,” is imploding from within due to division. At this point, we may as well admit the truth – we are no longer the United States of America. The USA may more accurately be described as “The Divided States of America.”
Even with our heads in the sand, the division is obvious:
- Racists vs. People of Color
- Democrat vs. Republican
- American Nationalists vs. everyone else
- Rich vs. Poor
- Evangelical Christians vs. everyone else
- Anti-abortion vs. Pro-choice
- Homophobic vs. everyone else
- Patriarchal men vs. Women
- Power driven vs. those seeking unity
The list goes on and on and on, and I don’t even know what to say about guns. Is it reasonable to argue that the second amendment protects people’s rights to own military assault weapons that are capable of committing mass murder? Should we protect people’s rights to own bombs too? Asking for a friend.
Division is the sad reality of our nation and I am convinced that nothing is going to change it. One might argue that change is always possible. In a recent post, popular pastor John Pavlovitz expounded on the dangers of Evangelical Christianity and issued a charge for us to do something about it. What does Pastor John suggest we do? I’ve learned that if there’s one thing we cannot do – it is change someone’s mind. When someone is convinced their way is right, there is nothing we can do to convince them otherwise.
I’ve have freed myself from the illusion that I might change someone’s mind. I have also let go of the hope that change is possible in this nation for the simple fact that second only to death, humanity’s greatest fear is change. In many (if not most) cases, change only happens after something is pulled from our cold, dead fingers.
This is the point. The empire as we have known it is dying. As well it should! An empire built on the illusion of freedom by a bunch of slave-owning white men, where every ounce of liberty for anyone other than white men in power has been very hard one, is not a model I’m interested in continuing. A nation built on fear, power, oppression, division, and control is by its nature unsustainable and cannot stand. As one very wise brown skinned man once said:
“Every kingdom divided against itself is brought to desolation, and every city or house divided against itself will not stand.” (MT 12: 25)
So it is with our nation. Rome (the USA) is burning and there is nothing we can do to stop it – neither should we try. It’s time to let it burn. There’s also nothing we need to do to hasten the burn – it’s doing a really good job all on its own. Instead, we are invited to accept the death of that which we have known, surrender to its death, and do what we can to keep ourselves safe and sane in a nation that is dying by its own hand. Toward that end, I am holding a special LIVE event on Tuesday, June 14th via ZOOM, entitled: Surviving the Collapse of an Empire. Click on the image below to learn more and to register.