inclusion

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Making room for an alternative opinion or way of thinking is the art of ‘deep inclusion’, a radical movement beyond the superficial and surface ways of being that underpin our shallow existence. Becoming trapped in the bias or prejudice that reinforces my preferential truism can be a destructive force that alienates me from my own personal evolution, and the growth of all those around me.

When the legal system gave us the power to differentiate we took matters into our own hands and created class systems that disadvantaged the weakest link. Whether it was by way of political or religious power we quickly found ways to subjugate people to the domination structures of exclusion.

‘Private property, trespassers will be prosecuted’....

We all feel like we have the right to our own 'private property', whether that is something we acquire as a tangible part of our possessions, or a way of thinking that I feel entitled to have as an autonomous law abiding citizen. Anyone who crosses the line and tries to disrespect my personal ownership will feel the full prosecutorial power of my 'individual rights’.

While this seems perfectly rational it does not take into account the fact that we are a part of the ‘human race’ which is not a competition to collect and consume at the behest of others but a challenge to find ways to share and contribute to the common good. No one wants to be taken advantage of or taken for granted so negotiating shared usage is where deep inclusion must find ways of coming to the table of negotiated agreement, for the betterment of all.

Exclusion is fuelled by fear and arrogance, an attempt to narrow life down to a fixed set of rules and complex certitudes that decide the outcome for the majority of those who don’t tick the boxes or jump through the hoops as required by the in-club.

Politics and religion have created their own exclusionary tactics in order to control the masses. As protectorates of the TRUTH, albeit their perceived truth, they estrange the provocateurs and contrarians so as to reinforce their elite and absolute position of opinion. Unfortunately this has resulted in some dubious and tragic manipulation of human lives to the point of unjust crimes against humanity.

“Don't look for shortcuts to God. The market is flooded with surefire, easygoing formulas for a successful life that can be practiced in your spare time. Don't fall for that stuff, even though crowds of people do. The way to life, to God, is vigorous and requires total attention.  - St Matthew

As a person of deep religious conviction I am constantly asking the ubiquitous question WWJD? Jesus preached a message of inclusion and incorporation, constantly suggesting ways to remove the private property signs and invite us into a public property responsibility world view. Instead of prosecuting trespassers he forgives trespasses and dispenses with judgement in favour of love and restoration.

I started my religious journey with a very narrow-minded trajectory based on a gospel verse that suggested that ‘narrow was the path’ and if you didn't find it you were condemned. I have since come to see that ‘life' is the narrow path and it is not easy for all of us to stay on it without paying careful attention. We get so easily distracted and find ourselves self-destructing every day, to the detriment of our humanity. The challenge of my religiosity is to try and and see that everyone is on some sort of path that this inclusive God is on with them and to help them lean into the guiding arm or assurance or reach out for the stabilising hand of reassurance that is always there. My early stage black and white exclusionary theology has evolved into a hopeful universalism that includes even more than I can currently comprehend.

Ken Wilbur says, we are all called to ‘transcend and include’ to keep moving beyond our deeply engrained judgements and viewpoints to higher levels of human consciousness. The need to be right and certain will be begin to submit to the higher law of ‘truthful grace’, something that Jesus as a human archetype grew up into as an example for us all to follow in. Grace is the doorway that opens to make a way for us all to be led into the truth of our own becoming. Truth is what becoming looks.. the discovery of true-self.