Friends, I know this may be a hard thought to swallow for many. So I offer it solely as food for thought. We need to remember that identifying as a Christian doesn’t exempt you from racism.
Christianity has forcibly colonized the world for centuries. If you look up Conqueror’s Temple in Mexico City, conquistadors forced Aztecans to disassemble their own temple and use the same stones to build a church. If you have a chance to walk through the National Museum of Mexican Art in Chicago in chronological order, you will understand a very clear visual depiction of the use of Christianity tied to governing, used to oppress, ethnically cleanse, and erase identities throughout the Americas.
If you have ever been to Europe, did you notice the base/foundation for many churches and cathedrals are actually ancient temples that had been built upon?
How about black slaves adapting to Christianity as a traumatic survival mechanism?
Mission trips evolving through the centuries, often gaslighting communities into believing they are ‘less than‘, and spiritual bypassing. Have you ever been called a warrior or a soldier for Christ? I have. I was raised with Christian belief systems and it’s a hard thing to reconcile.
Think of the sacred Native American effigies that we plowed through here in the Midwest, to build and settle. Or the assimilation and boarding schools surviving Native Children were forced into.
People in the US still terrorize in the name of God. Americans still defend laws and actions that are oppressive in the name of God.
We have an opportunity to learn, every day, from these past mistakes. Christians ARE allowing these atrocities to take place and assuming they are exempt from blame via righteousness. Thinking critically is vital.
By understanding these things and examining how our globalized past is woven into the present, it holds us accountable to evolve. We truly need to protect human lives. Of course your religion is valid, but I ask you to examine its flaws, and pay attention to motives. If you are connected with spirit your empathy for injustice will be high right now. If you are truly tuned in, you will no longer allow yourself to be misguided into following false prophets that are looking for further domination.
Whether you are comfortable or not, the discomfort we experience when we learn is where the true spiritual growth comes in! Your silence IS allowing others to be hurt further. We need to begin healing. Your voice and action matters. Please use it to help! You can show up from wherever in the process you are at and start to learn from there. Imperfections are acceptable, as we all begin somewhere.
If you don’t know where to start or you feel intimidated. It is ok! I encourage you to do some Googling (not Ms. Owens either), read some resources put out there by BLM activists, watch some movies/documentaries. There’s a lot out there. Listen to what the social justice advocates are calling for, as uncomfortable as it may feel. Challenge yourself to work past your emotional response, your programming, and TRULY see the world through different eyes. It is a long, a slow, a painful, an awkward, and sometimes isolating road. But it is worth pursuing! Social justice work is spiritual work!