by Robyn Short
As our Nation moves in to day three of the government shutdown, there is no doubt we are a Nation in crisis. Like most Americans, I watch the news, read about this crisis online and follow the conversations in the social space. Like all people, I am aghast at the devastating impact this shutdown is having on hundreds of thousands of individuals and the suffering that is ensuing because our congressional leaders lack the communication skills and compassion to lead this truly great Nation. The thought that continues to come to mind is that we have forgotten who we are. A nation cannot be in crisis separate from the people who make up that nation. Our Nation’s current crisis is a reflection of our own individual crises of identity.
I believe that it is impossible to piecemeal out our individual identities. For example, one might describe me as a Democrat, a writer, a publisher, a friend, a life partner, an activist, etc. But that is not who I am. Those descriptors are what I do and how I experience myself. Who I am is a child of God, which is who we all are. We are a Nation — indeed, we are a world — of bodies, all of whom are individual expressions of one Divine entity. We are not separate from one another. We are all expressions of one God (no matter the name you give that God). But we have forgotten that fact, and in doing so, we have separated ourselves from God. That is not to say that God has separated Himself from us, that would be impossible as we are a part of God. This is also not to say that our current crisis is a punishment from God. It is not. It is the natural consequence of separating ourselves from who we are. God is not punishing us, we are punishing ourselves.
Our national conflict is a manifestation of just how severely we have separated ourselves from one another.
So what can each of us do to turn this Nation around? We can begin the process of remembering who we really are and turning that remembrance into actionable expressions of God — which is actionable expressions of Love. It is my belief that God experiences God’s own self through our actions of Love.
The following two prayers in A Course in Miracles serve as a guide to help us remember who we are.
We can find our way out of fear and separation when we say to one another …
I give you to the Holy Spirit as a part of myself.
I know that you will be released, unless I use you to imprison myself.
In the name of freedom, I choose release, because I recognize that we will be released together.
May we all pray the following prayer adapted from A Course in Miracles:
Forgive us individually and collectively of our illusions. Help us to accept our true relationship with You, and therefore with one another, in which there are no illusions and where none can enter. Our holiness is Yours; there is nothing in us that needs forgiveness because Your forgiveness is perfect. The sleep of forgetfulness is only the unwillingness to remember Your forgiveness and your love. Let us wander not into temptation but rather remain in Your will. And let us receive only that which You have given and accept this into our individual minds and our collective minds, which You created.
As collective expressions of God, let’s choose to step into our Divinity rather than choosing to remain separated. We are the solution, Congress and our Nation, will follow suit.
Robyn Short has ghostwritten numerous books and is the founder of goodmedia press and goodmedia communications. She is a student of A Course in Miracles, a self-study system of spiritual psychotherapy. Robyn is a passionate believer in peace and social justice. She holds a Bachelors of Science in Psychology from Auburn University, a Masters of Liberal Arts from Southern Methodist University and will graduate with a Masters in Conflict Management and Dispute Resolution from Southern Methodist University in 2014. Robyn is the author of Prayers for Peace, and the forthcoming children’s book Peace People, co-authored with Nanon Williams. Robyn is available for book signings and to speak on topics of peacebuilding and nonviolence, especially as it relates to these core issues. Contact Robyn by email.