Posts Tagged ‘political psychology’


This year, regardless of political persuasion, we are jolted week to week by seeming reversals of fortune as the tracking polls nationally and in so called battle ground states depict the state of the race. One debate performance by our President that many thought fell flat and the narrative shifts with mind numbing speed. In fact, it is a function of numbness, a consequence of being too easily persuaded by superficial matters. We are, regrettably, an ahistorical society and largely an anti-intellectual one. This renders our democracy fragile .

Given stressful economic circumstances, fear makes a fool of the majority and accords too much authority to extreme, hyper-emotional views. It becomes susceptible to deceit, manipulation, negative ads, and rhetoric.

What is the connection between political sentiments and living the spiritual life?

In a word ” authenticity,” along with rational discourse and clear thinking. Much is being said about the importance of the ” independents” this year. My question is simply this: how independent are they really when only rhetorical shifts apparently lead to sentiment 180 degrees from reaction to an earlier rhetorical flourish?

A spiritual life is a commitment to the pursuit of what is real. It is an investment in being who we really are with others who we similarly encourage to be themselves. It is a life beyond masks and a love of genuine service to humanity. The marks of spiritual living are communion, not divisiveness, clear speech, not obfuscation, and dialogue that aims to explore mystery and dig deeper beyond the surface  appearances.

Over the last week in the U.S., I have been struck by the incessant chasing after poll numbers and the feeding frenzy around every little event that defines the narrative on the airways. I have come to believe that it is spiritually healthy to avoid the pundits entirely, though the status of the Presidential race is of keen interest to me, and focus on the issues that really matter, real track record and behavior, and approach political choices with spirituality and ultimate meaning kept firmly in mind.

It is too easy to over- compartmentalize our lives: to think “spiritual things” in the time set apart for it while concentrating on tasks and other matters separately.

The real meaning of integrity is that our spirituality is manifest in our thinking, our actions, the choices we make and the words we speak. It is a profound unity ( or at least, it should be). The degree to which this is not the case is diagnostic of the path we need to travel to reach that state of coherent being in the world. Such lived integrity is the example of the true avatars, prophets, soters and saints.

It is the heart of the Call.

© The Harried Mystic, 2012. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited.

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