Posts Tagged ‘dualism’


Ah the argument of rights, conspiracy theories such as the Barrington Declaration and the Great Reset, anti-maskers, “marches for freedom” hiding white supremacist resurgences, and a health system teetering on the brink while governance tries to down play those that die. Pretty much sums up where we are in Phase II of re-opening, and the new restrictions announced (read those here). As noted for me this is day 257 of working from home.

We like to scream for our independent rights, not knowing that the Charter of Rights and Freedoms in Canada regardless of iteration from the historic Red River Resistance up until the Charter of Rights and Freedoms enshrined in the Constitution Act, 1982 that these rights, are enshrined with the understanding of corporate responsibility.

See the source image

It is the stumbling block that has made Alberta, the most Americanized and ideological divisive province gain traction during this time. But then beginning of the week the new restrictions were announced, why? Our system is over run. Contact tracing (which provides the data of transmission for targeted approaches in containment and how the virus is mutating. Our system collapsed and the hospital system is training with increased risk to others who may not be able to access for other needs and emergencies. This happened while ignoring real time science it appeared, with a leak of the response being more about control and politics (read here), government issues managers online going after private citizens sharing thoughts and opinions, and the ongoing governmental attack on front line workers in industries they clamored needed to stay open for the economy and a sustained attack on doctors and nurses. As the message became a black and white response of lockdown or business, missing the nuance that properly sourced evidenced based practice can bring.

Then something happened. Yet, here we are in the ideological divide. Screaming about confusion. Asking why this and not that in the restriction list. Continuing sowing confusion on those who are contemplative about compliance to not, confirming those who would never follow through not to. And continuing to sow the divide in the province. Think of some key pressure points- why are churches allowed to stay open? Why aren’t rural in the mask mandate? Why only grades 7-12 home and online? Confusing orders in regards to students with disabilities, and private/charter schools. Why casinos but only VLTs? How to enforce the social gathering order. All this is still a political game.

Each of these questions are valid. Each and everyone should be asked. The level of discourse needs to be where it has not been in Alberta since the beginning of the merger road between PC/Wildrose. It needs to be civil, bullies put in their place and punted. For it to be effective and pragmatic there needs to be data. Yes, we have 7 months of data, yet it went of the rails rapidly (though predicted if the provincial government would allow for transparency on modelling). The fact so much time was wasted on “personal responsibility” requests that have historically known to be ineffective (I am old enough to remember the seatbelt debate), to continue to pander to the Americanized heart and mind of a province. Question, wit the first qualifier being we’re following through on them.

Now we are nearing the end of week 1 of 3, and as of today shattering records of new cases, deaths continuing to increase. Teetering where what our province has never had, will probably be the only way to regain any sense of sanity heading into 2021, and needing to bend the curve back so a vaccine would be most effective. Yes, those two words that scares our premier (the third possibly being leadership):

Lock Down.

I do not like typing those words, but unless citizens actually engage in being responsible, following through, holding each other accountable, even in the confusion of the restrictions to adhere…there is not many options left of the table with a system that can only track the rates of infection, death and hospitalization and soon probably not even that with the fatigue over running.

So yes, if you think your neighbourhood church is not adhering to restrictions, call them in. Let the fine bankrupt them, they deserve it. When you are asked to wait because the store is at 25% capacity, do so graciously. Because for the economy only libertarian ideologue, you know what hurts the economy? Rolling isolations and quarantines, overrun stress, and constant grieving. Mental health is not just a catch phrase, it is real, and it needs to be properly funded (what is our government’s record on cuts to this again?) and not just used as a proper to do nothing while people fall ill, and die.

Yes, this also means that if you neighbour is breaking the social gathering law–guess what? You need to be a responsible citizen. Also, even if not mandated in your area, mask up. Simple things can make 2021 better. I didn’t want to say to many that “I told you so” when I saw the writng on the wall with crisis management back in June, but I told you so.

Now, we need to decide if we are going to continue with the every one for themselves mindset of destruction or pivot, to our historical roots on the Prairies, of everyone together.

For indivdiual rights to flourish, take corporate responsibility to one another.

Are we responsible enough to bend re-flatten the curve?


Brother Jesus lived out around me,

Brother Jesus live out by me,

Brother Jesus within me.

(After Communion Prayer with the physical making of the cross)

We have been in pandemic mode via physical distancing (some in quarantine depending on symptomology, exposure or high risk of contraction) for four months now in Calgary, AB. It is a time of anxiety, reflection, work, discovering new resiliencies and strengths, needing to humble one self and move into the aid available through professional circles of support.

Though it also raises more questions, what is going to happen? Is the economic re-opening working? Will schools re-open in the Fall? Is it possible? Why does the government so hate educating our children that they keep changing the formula per student to reduce funding? And not being willing to provide extra funding for the measures proposed by AHS? Why would anxiety exist within this time?

It is also a time of spiritual rumination. Is this a time of discovery? As one travels through the Psalms, it becomes apparent that times like these The Holy Mystery uses to aid us in discernment, understanding, and discovery. Yet, for anyone (like our household) who has spent time on the journey of chronic conditions, this is a time when we can look at this type of teaching and go…yeah, but I do wish God would use another method for us to come into the presence.

There is, but as our world shows, this time has ripped off the veil–the band aid— and exposed the societal dualism we have sunk in to. Dualism? The developmental stage according to Erikson we are supposed to have successfully overcome in emergent adulthood, circa 18-22 years of age. And yet, here we are, en masse in this media/social media debacle.

A familiar meme on social media re-purposed to explain dualism

The idea that one side has to be accepted whether it is true or not, is a debating fallacy. As well, the concept that within dualism one side has to be completely evil for our viewpoint/opinion to be completely good and valid. What happens is an inability to critically think, to unpack and discourse. It is a world that’s stage was set at the end of World War II and the emergence of the Cold War, where capitalism or communism had to be completely true in this ideological battle. Note any other emergent ideological battles?

In Canada recently it is the shock and horror that a) we have Nazi monuments and b) that for some reason vandalizing them is a hate crime. Uhm no. Nazi’s were the epitome of the rising fascism, anti-Semitism, before the Second World War, the war should have ended the movement. Sadly, through the continuation of white supremacy and neo-Nazism we have seen it continue, though at times outside of the last four years, being knocked back to the shadows and routed.

What does this monument show us? A dark history that needs to be exorcised. Questions around who approved, where are others in our nation? Yes, Ukraine was taken over by the Nazi’s, some were taken in at gun point and then ideologically converted, others joined gleefully as they saw a divine mission by Hitler’s regime. Either way, the core is still the same, whether you are a Humanist or Christian (or anything in-betwixt)– Nazi’s are bad, and should not be honoured, remembered or celebrated. It is almost like a real time story of the Last Supper, where these communities and monuments are our own Judas Goat, now exposed to the light will we let the darkness continue?

These are the challenges ahead as we move through reconciliation, Black Lives Matter, Universal Basic Income…these are the calls to transfiguration for our society during c-tine. A time to allow the dualistic thinking that has allowed for oppressive-racist-misogynic-dominionism structures to be imposed upon the people, and to reclaim the heart of love, inter-connectedness and hope for our world.

As we move into month five, where are you taking your journey–

Further into the darkness,

Or into the Light of Life?


Image result for not in god's name jonathan sacks pdfSometimes an algorithm mix up is beneficial to discovering a new writer of depth. At the library search engine I was seeing if there was anything new from economist Jeffrey Sachs, what I reserved was a work by Rabbi Jonathan Sacks Not in God’s Name: Confronting Religious Violence (2015). Which unpacks dualism as it relates to extremism, antisemitism within Christianity historically, and recently taking root in Islam. The resurgence that is on level with the historic lead up to the Nazi Final Solution. It is done well, as Rabbi’s do, unpacking the issue with historical applications, context and the Hebrew Bible (and Christian Testament). So yes it is worth a read, and a read within a group if at all possible for healthy discussion on its application to our current reality whether religious, cultural or political, or in a healthy person how they all intersect.

Though, there is more, a quote that stuck out, a quote that lends it self to a meditative contemplation, a Lectio Divina, hearing it three times and seeing what comes up for reflection and discussion, I will share the quote, then the instructions on the contemplation:

…Violence may be possible wherever there is an Us and Them. But radical violence emerges only when we see the Us as all-good and the Them as all-evil, heralding a war between the Children of Light and the Forces of Darkness. That is when altruistic evil is born.

Rabbi Jonathan Sacks

(for the sci-fi geeks, watch the original Star Trek episode “The Savage Curtain” Season 3, episode 22).

Now for the 3-fold contemplation:

  1. Sit comfortably, taking deep breaths to centre yourself and calm yourself. Letting go of the burdens of the day. A good way to do this is to count up to 10, and on the exhales state peace. Once at 10, count down to zero and on the exhales state hope.
  2. Hear the quote the first time. See what memories come up, which one are you drawn to? Sit with that one for a while.
  3. Hear the quote a second time. What emotions come through, sit with the emotion, and where it comes from.
  4. Hear the quote a third time. What action are you feeling for your own life? Sit with that and the feeling it brings to you.
  5. Taking deep breaths to centre yourself and calm yourself. Letting go of the burdens of the day. A good way to do this is to count up to 10, and on the exhales state peace. Once at 10, count down to zero and on the exhales state hope.
  6. Share your action and the start date with a trusted friend so they can follow up on the action with you for accountability.

Altruistic evil only gains ground, and grows root, when we allow it to happen through giving in to Us and Them.