The cloudy circumstances and conflicting reports and varied information and misinformation surrounding the situation with Michael Brown and Darren Wilson sparked not only protests, but also a lot of contention among people, most of whom seemed bent on taking a side. Who was in the right? Who was in the wrong? What should justice look like in this situation?
“What gives my life meaning?”
Is there any more central question than that? Most days we don’t even dare face such a heavy question, such an existentially loaded quagmire. Yet, we all carry this question–even if it is buried deep down within us and rarely if ever sees the light of awareness.
Perhaps the biggest hindrance in our search for the answer to this question is that so much of religion teaches people that they cannot trust themselves. They must trust an outer authority more than their own soul. Trust the pope, the priest, the Bible, but not your own experience. Trusting yourself is dangerous. It’s ripe for abuse (never mind how much the same is true of any authority). And so people look to an external authority, a voice from outside to tell them what their life is all about. Continue reading