I hope our nation is in as much mourning as I am over the shooting at the Tree of Life Synagogue in Pittsburg. Anti-Semitism, along with racism, homophobia and other forms of xenophobia, is a pernicious and deadly undercurrent in our society that springs up like poisonous weeds in the lawns of our country. How do we get to the root of it to finally exterminate it? Some say such behavior is part of human nature, the way our species defines ingroups in contrast to the outgroups for the sake of survival. Others say we will always find a scapegoat onto which to project our own brokenness. I prefer the latter model. It accurately names the moral and ethical implications.

That’s not to say I’m not anti– I’m anti-scapegoating. I’m anti-bigotry. I’m anti-any sense of self-preservation that does not somehow also serve the largest possible good. I’m anti-any sense that somehow I am not connected on an atomic level with every living and (supposedly) non-living thing in the universe, that some things and people are more dispensable than me, and that the death of some is less significant than others.

I am anti that which obscures the fact that in the Great Mystery none of us is in the center, but all of us have a part.


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