Sunday, August 6, 2006
Who I'm really working for...
After the ceremony, and after dinner was done, my wife and I sat at one of the tables as the dancing began. The only ones who went out on the dance floor were the kids, which was kind of expected, in a way. About seven or eight kids, ages 3 to 8 ran around in circles, jumping up and down to the music, and nodding their heads to the music -- totally freeform. Their dancing was one of the most beautiful things I've seen in recent memory.
When I see the abhorrent things happening in and to the world, which for the sake of brevity in this post will go unnamed, I think about what these innocent angels are going to inherit. And I can't stand it. I work for them, and for their children, when they have them. And I work for the memories and dreams of those who came before us. In a way, I also work on behalf of my own generation's future, and in honor of the work that we've already done in our lives, but honestly, I hope this work goes on to be appreciated mostly by people who I won't ever be able to even meet, or barely dream of, because they're still forthcoming. This year, many of the people in my life are giving birth. I work for them. (Though at some point, I do mean to compile a list more comprehensive than "future generations"...)
Below are some of the words that I was fortunate enough to share at the wedding, at the request of the bride and groom:
As part of today's ceremony, [we] would like to include special recognition of a topic of current hot debate in this nation, and in Wisconsin – the right of all people to marry in sacred union, and to obtain the legal benefits of domestic partnerships.
A wedding is a special day for recognizing two hearts attracted to one another. That is the way that one Muslim imam described how love works, when asked to provide an Islamic view on homosexuality. I paraphrase here, but he put it something like "When two hearts are attracted to one another, the gender of their people is unimportant. Hearts don't recognize gender." If a Muslim leader from Morocco can recognize the nature of love and express it ever so eloquently, the people of the United States and Wisconsin would do well to open their ears to such a message. When our friends, family, and fellow citizens cry out about the injustice of denying marriage, or legal rights among partners of any gender, the compassion in us must call itself up so we can recognize suffering and injustice and act toward its swift resolution.
We pray that the hearts of all people will be made fit to honor those who raise their voices for justice and change. And that the world may learn a wider definition of love, in order that we may experience the strength and solidarity of community that can only happen when the circle is drawn to include everyone based on a celebration of our diversity. Amen.
After the ceremony, during dinner and the dance, several people came up to me and said they really appreciated what I had to say. Nobody said they didn't like it. I'm not naive enough to think that attendee was in agreement, but I do kind of wish someone would've wanted to exchange a meaningful dialog to get it out in the open.
Honestly though, I do get exhausted pondering the wide variety of beliefs that exist along the continuum known as Christianity. That anybody can come to the conclusion that Jesus' most important message was to make sure people different from 'us' should get less rights, and that their love should be rejected, is depressing, and is in fact an antithetical affront to all he stood for. "Love your neighbor" has to extend not only to next door, but to the next community, the next culture, and the next nation, and soon, or our existence on this sweet rock is doomed. I oughtta stop blogging and get to work!
music: Tool - 10,000 Days
colors: red, white, brown
mood: a bit more resolute than yesterday.
if you won't do it for me, then maybe at least for them?
(please note from the previous post that "me" can be plural)