Two things for Christians:
Trust in the power of your prayers. This means if you are praying for someone you have to treat them as if that prayer was already answered. Otherwise you aren’t praying in faith. For example, if you were praying for someone to get a job you would have to treat them as if they already had one.
Things said about people on the margins are unfalsifiable. For example if you say God is near people on the margins. People who do not experience this will be silenced and ignored because they have no voice. Conversely if you make a claim about the most powerful people that is false, they will immediately shut it down and will be listened to.
When your politician wants to do the right thing, they need your help.
If you call/tweet your representatives about something they already agree with, you are telling them: We have your back. You don’t have to worry that doing the right thing will cost you the election. Doing the right thing will get you votes, and make you *more* likely to win. That gives them more options.
I made a tool to do this.
How corporates co-opted the art of mindfulness to make us bear the unbearable:
While there can be little doubt that the practice of mindfulness can lead to significant health benefits, its current prominence in corporate culture is nested within a social, cultural and political context where stress is now seen as a failure of the individual to adapt to the productivity demands of the corporation. In other words, if you’re stressed out, you’re not working hard enough on your personal focus strategy. You’re letting the team down.
What Growing Up White in a Black Church Taught Me about Racial Justice:
People don’t fight for justice as an abstract concept—at least not for very long. What they do fight for is people. They’ll fight harder for those people with whom they can more easily empathize, and they’ll fight hardest for those people about whom they care most. If white people are going to make a robust and lasting commitment to racial justice work, then intimate inter-racial friendships must accompany and sustain that commitment.
Christians are so turned off by people with disabilities because they display God’s inaction in action. They are kryptonite for prayer, their conditions often worsen instead of better with time. Christians are not allowed to resent God for his inaction directly so they do so vicariously through individuals with disabilities. That’s why people with disabilities often get treated worse in church than other places.
Great NYTimes Article on the end of truth:
Social networks and hacking also “have enabled us to see, in full color, into the innermost workings of every institution and into the attitudes of those who run them,” noted Seidman, “and that has eroded trust in virtually every institution, and the authority of many leaders, because people don’t like what they see.”
I think we can all agree that society’s relationships are continuing to transitioning from Martin Buber’s I and thou to I and it. But the transition is like the dead zone where your cell phone is trying (and failing) to reach the outermost periphery of your wi-fi network but doesn’t know well enough to give up and connect to the cell phone network.
It is a recipe for depression when you are expected to believe you have innate worth (I and thou) while experiencing the opposite (I and it). The culture and modern psychology in general is so disingenuous about this. Can’t we just admit that physical appearance, money, status, and charisma are the most important things. Can we quit pathologizing low self-esteem and learn to see it as an often correct self-assessment. The whole concept of self-esteem presupposes one has innate worth which is untrue for all but the luckiest of us. We need to move to the way it was in pre Christian times where people were open and honest about one’s value being tied to their station.
Has Evangelical Christianity Become Psychopathic?:
Every generation redefines what it means to be, or belong to a religious group. Religious ideologies, interpretations, and doctrines are fluid. But whatever it is, or whatever it becomes, is made by the people who belong to the religion and what they collectively decide to make it.
Great article, questions that killed my faith:
The idea that there is a God who wants you to feel loved by him simply isn’t true. Some people are good at feeling imaginary love and other people aren’t. It’s another placebo. For some people the effect is strong enough that it really helps them feel happy on a day-to-day basis; other people get nothing out of it. If it works for you, they will say “great, isn’t God’s love amazing?” If it doesn’t work for you, “just hang in there and keep trying, God won’t give you a bigger dry spell than you can handle, he really does love you, don’t expect that your needs are going to be met in any specific way because that’s arrogant and God’s ways are beyond our understanding.” If we believe that God will absolutely draw near to us if we draw near to him, and he isn’t drawing near to us, then clearly we aren’t doing a good enough job of drawing near to him.
This article fleshes out this (miscongregation of psychology and Buddhist thought) idea that you are culpable for your stress. The way you react to pain is what causes suffering. The idea that you are culpable for your feelings is pretty abhorrent but I’ve learned to expect anything from psychology.