True Spirituality Necessitates Leftist Thought

In the past I've said that anyone who truly adopts spirituality will, inevitably, adopt a leftist political view. That statement was met with some pretty intense push-back (some from my own family), and, since we find ourselves in yet another tumultuous and chaotic uprising against injustice and tyranny, I thought it might be a good idea to further flesh this idea out.

When I use the term spirituality, I specifically don't mean religion. I'm not saying that religion is necessarily problematic, but dogma and a belief system isn't really required to develop a spiritual outlook on life. For me, spirituality is the concept of seeing the world in a not solely physical way. Spirituality is acknowledging a reality that is outside of the one we can perceive with our physical body; it acknowledges a spirit or a soul in each being, and it asks us to imagine a world where all people are truly equal. If we remove the body from the equation, almost all prejudices fall away.

Taken to an extreme this can take us to a head-in-the-sand way of living where we claim to not see color. This isn't my intention at all. In order to live in the physical world, we need to keep one foot in it. While we may all be the same on the inside (or spiritually speaking) we are not all the same on the outside, and those difference have cause people to be treated in different ways over time. Encountering these differences from a spiritual place should leave you wondering why in the world, for example, would black people be treated differently in America than white people? After all, our spirits are the same, and it's only our physicality that has caused us to have vastly different life experiences.

A spiritual practice that does not encourage the individual to see the world in this way is, frankly, not useful and not helpful to humanity. This is why religion isn't necessary in this equation. Judaism and Mormonism both have used the Biblical myths of Cain and Ham to explain why black people deserve to be less than whites. Christianity and Judaism have used the The Fall (or, when Eve tasted of the fruit of the tree of knowledge) to explain why women are second to men, and why evil exists in the world today.

We don't live in a world where we can talk to the gods of the holy books of these religions. Instead, we have to believe that they are true, and, I have to ask, what good does it do to believe in an inherent or even divine difference between different skin colors or different sexes? The only good it does is to create and maintain a power structure, and this power structure benefits the people at the top, not the everyday believers, and certainly not God.

Maintaining differences and power structures based on a physical reality is inherently anti-spiritual. It demands a spiritual and religious outlook that worships flesh and bone and throws spirit and soul to the winds.

Accepting, on the other hand, that our true nature is not physical, that we in fact are a soul or a spirit housed in a body of flesh, necessitates that we see all people as equal. Using our physical eyes, however, reveals to us that all people are, in fact, not equal under the law almost anywhere.

Thus, a person who has truly accepted a spiritual outlook on life has the responsibility to bring this physical plane as close as is possible to the nonphysical one. It behooves all of us to do whatever we can to bring peace and equality to all peoples. If we can accept the nature of a soul (or whatever you may call it) we cannot bear the cognitive dissonance of allowing injustice and inequality to exist in our world.

A spiritual person will always fight for the disenfranchised, even when we don't personally understand the issue at hand. A spiritual person will always value the right of people to live over the negative value of property damage. A spiritual person knows that "love and light" is not and cannot be the answer.

So why do we gotta tell each other how to live?
The only prisons that exist are ones we put each other in. 
 - Lady Gaga

Perhaps this is an overly simple idea, but it seems to me that spirituality is the idea that humans are more than their bodies, and even on that concept alone, prejudices based on bodies don't have a leg to stand on. 


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