The Raven team is taking a break from blogging from July 15 to August 15 to rest and renew our minds, bodies and spirits. As always, our hearts will be overflowing with gratitude for all of you and your devotion to the great work of building inclusive, sustainable communities of peace. If possible, please find time to nourish yourselves, too, so we can all return energized for the work ahead.
News Fast for Peace!
We will be disconnecting from the news cycle and taking a hiatus from social media to renew and refresh our commitment to peace. This does not mean that we are fatigued from fighting the good fight. Quite the opposite! We are not disconnecting from making a difference but intentionally withdrawing from the things that can keep us from being the change we want to see in the world around us.
Be reminded that the “news” cares only about conflicts and scandal, hate and violence, while social media seeks to draw us into the fray. If we are not careful, we can get pulled into waves of anger, hate and resentment that lead us nowhere. Despite our best intentions, we can easily become part of the problem.
Change Your View
No one ever changed someone’s mind by accusing them of being wrong, willfully ignorant, or blind to their own faults. All that does is hurt, shame and wound. Would you listen to someone who blamed you for the problems we face as a nation? Arguing will not make the world a better place, only a more resentful one.
The news and social media thrive on finding and calling out enemies of goodness, truth, equality, freedom – whatever the cause, an enemy of the goal must be found and persuaded, sidelined, or undermined. But the truth is that enemies are convenient figments conjured by our need to be on the side of all that is good and true. As René Girard ironically observed, we are quite “proficient in discovering other people’s scapegoats… [but] we only have legitimate enmities.”
If we can find an enemy, someone we believe we have good reason to vilify, we can be reassured of our own goodness. If we fail to see that our so-called enemy is actually our scapegoat, our anger, bullying, unfriending and Tweet blocking feels justified and we become nothing like the paragons of virtue we imagine ourselves to be. In fact, we become the very thing we say we are against.
Change the World
We invite you to join us in our media fast for peace. If you do, a space will open up for you to see the good in your political enemies, to recognize that they, like you, want to make the world a better place. When we stop posting, give up arguing, admit we might not have all the answers and start listening, we find that the change we want begins at home.
Image: Created by Susan Drawbaugh
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