“If personal computers are such a big deal, wouldn’t there be one in every home already?” says the cynic in 1981.
“You don’t understand,” replies the optimist. “The change is about to happen. It’s not that the computers are already in the home. It’s that they are about to be.”
A shift is afoot. A gargantuan, monumental, societal shift. It will take over the spirit and psyche of each of us, with the full, heaving and grieving weight of a death or birth in the family. If you are not presently partnered with a loved one, involved in a community, connected with a counsellor, living life with a close friend, it is time to put yourself in the path of deep vulnerability and care, for this blanket of support will be needed.
The Innovators who have gone before us have shown us: what they’ve done is brave and risky, and they have endured the heartbreak and pain as initial breakers-of-ice. They have been discarded and shunned, labelled as heretics, the Galileos of our time. They’ve dared to re-label the universe, and experience the wrath of authorities who refuse to be proven wrong. And they, the first-goers, are being proven right.
It’s found in communities like Evolving Faith — a legacy left by the late Rachel Held Evans, a true spiritual seeker and pioneer. It’s found in works like The Great Spiritual Migration, by Brian McLaren, heretic-in-chief. These brave prophets have lit the way in the wilderness, and have been excommunicated by the mainstream.
But they were not joking, or merely messing with you. They were right, they are right, and we will soon be catching up to their world.
The path is now clear for the Early Adopters, emerging a half-generation later to benefit from the work, and see with new eyes the pain, the possibility and the pure potential of what’s to come. As I walk around this room, I look around and see people of my own age bracket, trembling with deep suffering and empathy, eyes widened to see the impossible injustice, heart burning for a new world, head shaking at the resistance we know we will face.
Soon, the Early Majority will be here, and it will be a sloshing, crushing wave of pain and hope. The dam can only hold so long. If you are not already heartbroken, you are about to be heartbroken. If your fundamental world orientation has not shifted, the tectonic plates will soon shift.
Do I say this to frighten you?
No, I say this to frighten myself.
How can I do my part to help prepare the way?
How can I help awaken our churches to be safer havens? How can I help alert our spiritual communities about the tidal wave approaching their shores? How can we send the message to mobilize our groups to become rescuers before we must be evacuees?
My country has committed cultural genocide. My religion has been complicit in it. Our teachings have fed into a narrative of domination. We have assisted the rise of harmful leaders, contributed to the exploitation of the planet, justified the abuse of others. We continue to be use our “holy scriptures” to justify exclusion of marginalized people. Our belief system continues to separate us and others from the very God we claim to serve. Our belief system clouds our abilities to love and serve. If we don’t choose to dismantle and address these harmful beliefs, it will soon be inevitably and unavoidably laid bare. Meanwhile, urgent work remains to be done, not to “save lost souls” but to be active agents of love in a world that is truly suffering.
Alert! Awaken! Rise up! Mene, mene, tekel, parsin!