Friday, January 24, 2014

Sustainability, A Sacred Conversation

“The fullness of divine import is experienced as the “I” embraces that which sustains its sacred holy presence.”

-          Anonymous

Through my years in Christendom communion has become a discourse on sustainability.  A mystical symbol of Jesus’ love for me, it is a most intimate encounter which sustains me as I move through the joys, hopes, sorrows and challenges of the day.  Communion is transcendent, unveiling God’s longing for the oppressed and the oppressor.  It holds the infinite, and the finite, it is everlasting and this without sway.  Living a life of communion, I address those deeper issues, concerns and questions of sustainability.  Questions such as, “how do I sustain myself, my community and those relationships significant to me on this journey?  How do I live an authentic life yet somehow balance that authenticity with the grace and mercy for others and myself without finding myself in a space of the inauthentic? 

These questions emerge as a primary consequence of my experience of identity.  This has been an intensely personal unfolding, and I might add a public witness of sacred import as relationships in community, culture, society and the political reveal themselves and their limits to me, each becoming a discourse on the challenges of inclusivity, sustainability, and strategies to life, agency and power.   Identity, i.e. gender, sexuality, race, economics, immigration and the environment then must be viewed as concerns and challenges of human sustainability and in this sense a call to return to earth embodiment.  

These words present a call for a different hope, one not shaped by the present political theology and its advocacy of a profit based economics sustained by a particular pathology of violence upon non-heteronormative identities and a coddling of the simple minded but a hope which embodies a queer hospitality grounded in infinity with a goal of sustainability, in this I am mindful of Hannah Arendt and her treatment of political legitimacy and its implications toward revolutionary intent.    Based on her words sustainability becomes a conversation on civil disobedience.  

This may sound odd but in a world of the heteronormative, the materialistic and the associated idolatry an authenticity which doesn’t reflect this reality can be detrimental to life, liberty and just plain survival.  In this light a conversation on sustainability continues the courageous work of justice as a sacred discourse within the Civil Rights Movement.  Issues of identity, i.e. race, poverty, education, gender and sexuality are all sacred historical conversations of justice in this I suggest sustainability.  Pushing this conversation farther, I suggest here that sustainability becomes a conversation of the “I” and its holiness.  It becomes a sacred challenge to established systems of community which shape desires of the religious, economy and the political. 

My thoughts, now emerging from a cultural and historical perspective, I long for the abstract, even the complex, not to be the enemy of the accessible since it is the abstract and the complex which more intimately embraces the authenticity, even the truth of the human condition and this becomes my argument, my push for sustainability.    Identity is intimately engaged in the project of sustainability and as such becomes a discourse on eschatology and in this sense it is that primary transformational presence moving culture and society towards new horizons of hope.

New horizons of hope rest in an uncommon faith which emerges out of our intimate relationship with the divine.  It is a faith that yields a courage grounded in the garden of Gethsemane and expressed on the Cross.  It is compelling and unrelenting, moving the sojourner through space and time, through struggle and joy to affect the divine cosmic human interaction.   Sustainability, emerging as an activity of this uncommon faith becomes an orientation to the limitless love of God.   Sustainability then becomes a provocative act of heart and soul, becoming the hope of the poor, the lame, the ill, the veteran and the impoverished.   It is the nourishment for the soul and a sacred act of love.