It has been an emotional week for so many of us, including for millions looking on from around the world. Yet even though the election is behind us, it has revealed that the divisions within the country are deeper and more rooted than we had wanted to believe. These divisions will clearly be with us for a very long time. Along with them comes an alarming level of antipathy—the Course would use the word “hate”—on both sides.
There is, then, great work to do for many years to come in healing the country. And while we work to advance policies that we believe in, we must remember the only thing that really heals hate is love. As Martin Luther King, Jr. famously said,
Returning hate for hate multiplies hate, adding deeper darkness to a night already devoid of stars….Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that.
We need, therefore, to cultivate genuine love for the people on the other side of the political divide. Not a reluctant tolerance, not a veiled condescension, and not a tepid affirmation that they have rights too. We need to actually love them.
This, of course, is easier said than done. But as students of A Course in Miracles, we are in a unique position to achieve this kind of love. For we walk a path that teaches us in great detail how to let go of anger and hate and to see instead God’s beloved Son in everyone, no matter how different from us they seem. If we could truly see the divine beauty in someone we despise on the other side, the Course tells us that we “could scarce refrain from kneeling at his feet” (W-161.9:3).
This is the kind of love we need to stand for, a love that is far higher than love as the world knows it. This needs to be our real political philosophy—our politics above politics. We are called to believe in this unconditional love, cultivate it, speak up for it, and demonstrate it. If we do, we can help plant the seeds of a new country and a new world. For this, the Course tells us, is where the world is eventually headed. Our job is to hasten the day when it gets there.
Circle of Atonement Board & Staff
Mary Anne Buchowski
Mark de Bruijn