Newspaper article The Topeka Capital-Journal

Letters

Newspaper article The Topeka Capital-Journal

Letters

Article excerpt

PRAYER AND POLITICS

Don't confuse them

The author of a letter published May 25 in The Topeka Capital- Journal confuses prayer with politics. He would have us pray against the Democrats and Socialists, those who supposedly are dismantling both the Constitution and Christianity, and those supposedly creating a race war in the United States.

The problem is not the Democrats and Socialists but those who view events as "either/or" rather than "both/and." For example, either you are a Tea Party supporter or against America. Either you are a Christian or you are non-religious. Either we agree about our religion and politics, or we will have another Civil War.

A "both/and" perspective expresses divergent views in terms of solidarity and diversity. In the examples above, the "both/and" perspective would look like this: We have a diversity of political and religious views in this country, both Democrats and Republican, both Socialists and Tea-Partyers, and both Christians and those who practice other faiths or no faith. And we stand in solidarity with each other, despite our diversity of views, because we want the best for our nation.

Despite our diversity, we want to stand in solidarity in our support of the Constitution which says in the First Amendment "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof. ..." Religion doesn't mean just Christianity; it means all the great world religions -- Judaism, Islam, Buddhism, Hinduism, and so forth.

If we cultivate this sense of solidarity and diversity, then power-play politics -- present at all levels of government -- are lessened.

We need to be aware when Christians pray amid this diversity they pray as Jesus prayed for forgiveness and solidarity. "Forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us. …

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