Greenleaf writes: The forces for good and evil in the world are propelled by the thoughts, attitudes, and actions of individual beings. What happens to our values, and therefore to the quality of our civilization in the future will be shaped by the conceptions of individuals that are born of inspiration.
How many of us believe Greenleaf when he writes: The forces for good and evil in the world are propelled by the thoughts, attitudes, and actions of individual beings. How many of us believe that if it weren’t for THEM we would be o.k.? How many of us deny that we are, indeed, living paradoxes and so we, each of us, is capable of being good AND of being evil? How many of us believe that we, each of us, is living virtue and living vice? For Christians, Jesus was clear: take the log out of your own eye first before you look for the speck in the eye of the other. What are we, each of us, willing to Declare?
Each day, in our country, we are called upon to embrace and live into and out of our communal Declaration – a Declaration of Independence [I invite you, gentle reader to stop, step back, read and then take some time to reflect upon our Declaration]. How many of us will actually take the time to pause and reflect upon this powerful document and its many obvious and subtle ideas; ideas that were truly ‘radical’ and ‘counter-cultural’ at the time. How many of us strive to imagine the courage (also think ‘heart’) that it took for each of the signers to step forward and write his name down? ‘Give me liberty or give me death’ was no simple turn of phrase for these men.
Today, how many of us will stop, step back, pause and reflect upon the vision this document called the folks in the colonies to live into and out of (a vision that still calls each of us Citizens and want-to-be Citizens today)?
How many of us Citizens truly believe that ‘WE’ are the government and hence that each of us is responsible and response-able and accountable to ensure that our Declaration is honored today? How many of us truly believe that each of us is unconditionally response-able and accountable when it comes to ensuring that our Declaration be held in trust so that future generations will be able to have the opportunity and the charge to live into and out of our Declaration. How many of us, as individuals, consciously affirm our Declaration?
Those brave men who signed our Declaration were truly ‘born of inspiration.’ They also demonstrated their commitment by choosing to put pen to paper and sign their name (potentially in blood). To what extent are we – each of us – Citizens willing to put our name to this Declaration? This question gives me pause today. . .