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Pro Choice IS Pro Life

Published on 15/06/12
by randy

Life/death is difficult.  It’s complicated.  It’s messy.  And when we try to make decisions from our head rather than our heart, we run into increasing difficulty.  When we become rigid in our thinking we can make things worse.  The closed mind can be a dangerous thing.  On the other hand, there’s nothing more beautiful than a mind wide open to the wonder and mystery.  A mind, open from the heart, flows like water to meet the next change, the gift of the divinity of the next arising moment.  Within the complexity of life, perhaps our most important action is to listen deeply to the heart’s call.  This is where faith abides.  It’s where we find our center, outside the insecurity of trying to convince others that we’re right and they’re wrong.

There’s simply no way I can know what a young woman is going through who finds new life in her body that’s not wanted.  There’s no way I’ll understand the conviction of someone who’d wish harm upon this woman because they refuse to meet her suffering.  I’ve always thought the Pro Life movement has lost credibility by refusing to stand against capital punishment and collateral damages from war.  I do know that faith calls us to compassion, to meet another’s suffering with an open heart.  It calls us to surrender these matters to Divine Love, knowing it all works out, far beyond our small ego mind’s temptation to think we somehow ‘know what’s best’.  In these matters, I have no choice but to rest in faith, embracing the uncertainty of it all.

The longer I live, the more I ‘think’ I know, the more I’m humbled to the mystery of this gift of life.  It seems my greatest test of faith is to surrender through deep listening to divine Providence.  Faith says to surrender, knowing it all works out, moment by moment.  It’s this Ground of Being that gives us the vitality, strength and courage to participate.  Even when the problems like abortion, war, capital punishment, euthanasia, etc. present themselves, we can fill with joy for the opportunity of participation.  And when it’s obvious there are no black and white answers, faith gives the flexibility to openly meet new moments with curiosity and a desire to ease suffering.  From here we must continue to ask the questions, beyond the illusions of ‘an answer’.

When I present a strong attitude of ‘knowing’ I seem to increase suffering.  When I allow faith to work, the open heart and curious mind listen more carefully.  At this moment, we touch what’s common…common sense.

This deep faith that comes from an open heart is beautifully described by a seventeenth century Jesuit named Jean-Pierre de Caussade:

“….God is only asking for your hearts.  If you truly seek this treasure, this kingdom where God alone reigns, you will find it.  Your heart, if it is totally surrendered to God, is itself that treasure, that very kingdom you long for and are seeking.  When we long for God and his will we rejoice in it and that rejoicing is the fulfillment of our longing.  To love God is to long earnestly to do so.  Loving, we wish to be the instrument of his action so that his love can operate in and through us.  Divine action responds to the willingness and good intentions of the pure and simple, not to their intelligence, nor to any precautions they may take, plans they may make their own initiative.  All these can lead them astray—they often do.  But their honesty and good intentions never betray them.”   p. 30, The Sacrament of the Present Moment

I find it extremely gratifying that our fore fathers understood this, directing us to surrender to divine Providence in matters of such complexity.  I admit, I don’t have the answers.  Yet, I have to confess that for me, pro choice is pro life.  It’s asking for a deeper examination of our suffering and our willingness to meet one another’s suffering.  Our fore fathers understood how money corrupts, printing “In God we trust”, once again directing us to move beyond our notions of cleverness and knowing.  Rather than spending billions of dollars trying to persuade one another to what we “think” is right, how about going back to the glue this country was founded on….faith and the open heart?  It’s in this magical space of mystery, faith and wonder where we’ll come to the ‘feeling’ that pro choice is pro life, divine action deepening our understanding of one another.

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