Sunday, March 21, 2021

Jesus' example in the Me Too Age

Collect: Almighty God, you alone can bring into order the unruly wills and affections of sinners: Grant your people grace to love what you command and desire what you promise; that, among the swift and varied changes of the world, our hearts may surely there be fixed where true joys are to be found; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.

John 12:20-33

Now among those who went up to worship at the festival were some Greeks. They came to Philip, who was from Bethsaida in Galilee, and said to him, “Sir, we wish to see Jesus.” Philip went and told Andrew; then Andrew and Philip went and told Jesus. Jesus answered them, “The hour has come for the Son of Man to be glorified.  Very truly, I tell you, unless a grain of wheat falls into the earth and dies, it remains just a single grain; but if it dies, it bears much fruit. Those who love their life lose it, and those who hate their life in this world will keep it for eternal life. Whoever serves me must follow me, and where I am, there will my servant be also. Whoever serves me, the Father will honor. “Now my soul is troubled. And what should I say—‘Father, save me from this hour’? No, it is for this reason that I have come to this hour. Father, glorify your name.” Then a voice came from heaven, “I have glorified it, and I will glorify it again.” The crowd standing there heard it and said that it was thunder. Others said, “An angel has spoken to him.” Jesus answered, “This voice has come for your sake, not for mine. Now is the judgment of this world; now the ruler of this world will be driven out. And I, when I am lifted up from the earth, will draw all people to myself.” He said this to indicate the kind of death he was to die.

What an incredible example we have in Jesus! He selflessly sacrificed his own life for all of us. He died, and in that act not only did we all live, but Christianity was established as a great religion.  This could not have happened without Jesus’ leadership and sacrifice.

His example could be used in our world today. There has been a movement in this country called the #MeToo movement in which women and men have begun coming forward and declaring their sexual assault or harassment of the past. I myself have experienced this but choose to not share any details. Some declarations are from the near past, some from years ago. All are traumatic memories that require years of work to heal from, and some wounds never completely heal. My work as both a yoga and meditation therapist has helped to heal many, myself included.

But looking at the example set by Jesus of self-sacrifice in the face of the greater good, it seems to me there are other steps that can easily be taken to heal from these traumas. Jesus died for our sins. But those that sin shouldn't get a get out of jail free card because of this. Accountability is as important as forgiveness. Denying an event happened is not good for the mental wellbeing of the victim or the perpetrator.  The Me Too movement was established to help victims heal. Perpetrators can help in this healing process through honestly apologizing, admitting their mistake, and taking whatever fallout should come.  Through moral and ethical action, we all are healed.

In my world, the yoga world, this happens too. Many events have been reported publicly. Many victims have spoken their truth. But it is mixed when it comes to perpetrators. One would think we would lead by example. But no industry is perfect. And there is so much good that can come out of these teachings. Much like Jesus those that do the right thing, self-sacrifice, no matter how much pain the fallout personally causes them, do better by the yoga teachings and move us all as a society forward to a healthier future.


"The friend who is a helpmate,

the friend in happiness and woe,

the friend who gives good counsel,

the friend who sympathizes too --

these four as friends the wise behold

and cherish them devotedly

as does a mother her own child."

Dīgha Nikāya 3.265

Word of the Buddha


This week marks the one year anniversary of this blog. I have consistently written weekly for one year. It is now a habit I plan to continue. The Episcopal Church readings, as presented weekly here, are on a three year rotation, year B started at Christmas. I am one third through! BNH


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