Tag Archives: Injustice

Ep99 Dividers and Uniters

Father Len grapples with the causes, effects and solutions to the anger and division present in our country, our churches, and our families.

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Highlights, Ideas, and Wisdom

  • Dividers are often inspired and motivated by their own psychological needs.
  • Dividers are judgmental.
  • People with a deep desire for division make up their own rules and condemn others for not following their made-up rules.
  • In the Bible, the Pharisees made up hundreds and hundreds of rules. They condemn Jesus and others for not following the rules they made up. They love to proclaim how much more religious and holy they are than everyone else.
  • People who seek division are the enemies of Christ and true religion.
  • How to Know a Person: The Art of Seeing Others Deeply and Being Deeply Seen by David Brooks
  • Father Len shares the story of a guy who lived much of his life as a divider though he was very religious. His sense of religion was very legalistic and judgmental, critical of everybody. Remarkably and unconsciously, at the age of 50, he experiences a remarkable deep conversion to his faith and becomes a disciple of love with a desire to unite everyone.
  • Some people accidentally and unconsciously end up working for division in a community out of their own sense of anger, insecurity, or pain.
  • Division or unity is a fundamental choice. At some point in life, we must decide between division and unity, hatred and love.
  • Father Len tells the story of a woman who experienced an awful childhood of rape and incest, yet she devotes her life to helping the wounded and broken of the world to reject shame, heal their souls and feel loved.
  • It’s not what happens to you in life that matters. It’s how you react to what happens that matters.
  • Saint Paul warned people to keep away from those who cause division and put obstacles in their way because they don’t serve the Lord.
  • Satan loves division. Satan loves to dress up as something good, but the only fruits he offers are not good, just more division.
  • Bowling Alone: Revised and Updated: The Collapse and Revival of American Community by Robert Putnam
  • Social capital is a sense of unity and solidarity, the need to take care of others and build up an entire community or nation.
  • The United States was built on and succeeded because of social capital.
  • Division is where injustice and hatred grow.
  • Higher social capital tracks with more justice, more societal success, and more happiness.
  • Societies that are more narcissistic, about me, me, me, are less happy and have more crime, corruption, and injustice.
  • Social capital is connected with holiness.
  • “Let’s move away from the current plague in our country and our church that we need to attack each other. We can build a great country and church with social solidarity. We can’t build anything putting each other down constantly.” – Father Len

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Ep58 The Big Mysteries of Christianity

Father Len and Irish grapple with the mystery of the three big events that are the foundation of Christianity: God taking on human flesh and living among us, God being tortured and killed by us, and God’s miraculous resurrection from the dead.

Highlights, Ideas, and Wisdom

  • Father Len explains why we should view these events as a whole, as one.
  • Father Len identifies three groups of Christians and their sensibilities: Christmas Christians, Good Friday Christians, and Easter Christians.
  • Christmas Christians love the idea of God becoming a human being and the practice of giving and receiving gifts as a way of showing appreciation for the gift of people in their lives.
  • God recognizes there’s a problem in creation and it’s us. We don’t realize that being a true human being means living a life of love. So God takes on human flesh to teach us the way of love.
  • Good Friday Christians see the brokenness in the world. They have a deep awareness of sin in the world. They recognize the fight between goodness and corruption and injustice, even in ourselves. They see and understand the need to “die” for what is right.
  • Atheists, like Richard Dawkins, believe that we can solve the problems of the world, on our own, with education and our intellect. Father Len explains why this is a big lie.
  • We have to be able to see sin and corruption in the world and realize that it’s not the world that needs to change, it’s us. We’re the ones that have to change.
  • Father Len uses the movie “The Help” to illustrate how Christ’s model for becoming a true human being and living a life of love actually works.
  • The struggle against injustice and oppression and dying to our ego purifies the soul. It gets us ready to enter the kingdom of God here and now.
  • Christ’s resurrection from the dead is not just a singular event. It represents a whole way of life that begins for us right here and now and is fulfilled in heaven when we die.
  • If Christ didn’t die, he couldn’t have been resurrected.
  • Resurrection for us is not returning back to our former life. That’s resuscitation. That’s continuing to live like zombies with half a conscience.
  • The resurrection for us is a whole new life. It’s Christ putting his life in our hearts. It’s freedom from all the shame and darkness in the world. It’s so extreme that in the early church those who were resurrected were called “new persons.”
  • Easter Christians live in the resurrection. Their hope is in them and beyond them. They live with love and joy inside them that can’t be taken away because they’ve died to anger and fear.
  • “The line dividing good and evil cuts through the heart of every human being.” – Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn
  • All our sins begin on the inside, in our hearts.
  • Our modern culture tells us that the problems in the world are outside of us. Therapists believe this is the result of a generation raised with the idea that self-esteem is all important. A generation constantly told, “you’re smart, you’re good, you’re beautiful, you’re special, you’re a winner, you can’t be the problem.”
  • If you’re not participating in the resurrection, right here and now, why do you think that you’ll be participating in it in heaven? If you spend your whole life denying your own brokenness, not becoming something new, better, and connected, what makes you think that you will be ready for heaven?