Primitive Christianity Revived, Again
Stunning article from the New York times on how unconscious gender bias against women impedes the progress of women in science. That this is happening 350 years after Quakers understood scripture to mandate gender equality and that failure to do so was tantamount to rejection of Christ is a great example of how we fail to listen to the profoundly transformative power of the Light. These days liberal college faculty and young people brought up in the era of Title IX (presumably including many Quakers) are likely to overtly endorse gender equality while retaining the unconscious gender biases that operate at the unconscious level of character. It is only through moment-to-moment contact with the Light or, as Buddhist's would say, by resting in awareness, especially in deep silence, that we can see how these biases operate in ourselves and then see them letting go. The transformative power of the Quaker message is remarkable, but as one can see from 200+ years of schisms extending into the present it is also obscure even to modern Quakers who stay mired in reified beliefs and therefore opposed to the power of continuing revelation. The Buddha said that mindfulness is always good; ditto paying attention to the Light in Christocentric language. I am reminded here of Elias Hicks whose devotion to moment-by-moment contact with the Light was the same thing as continuing revelation or, put another way, how reason is ultimately an aspect of Light/Love only when applied without human willing. Perhaps it's time to focus less on arguing the what of what we know and more on how we know what we know? Perhaps the deep dive into individual and corporate Quaker process that is now underway in Indiana Yearly Meeting will bring the transformative power of the Light into the forefront and enable a unique unbiased outcome that none of us can currently envision. Standing in the Light, we are like God working through us not so much us working for God. Perhaps in the schisms is also the germination of the true Quaker spark and as it extends its reach the transformation of the world around us.
I think that we aren't intended to be merely "puppets of the Light." I mean, in some sense we're supposed to participate -- even our "egos" are supposed to participate. To be "without human willing" -- though people like John Woolman clearly meant something positive by such concepts -- is to reverse the Creation.
I mean: God has made us -- with/as those pesky egos that do all this 'human willing.'
Which 'human willing', so far as people are heedless of the Light, gets us & nearby bystanders into more inconvenience than people really want to go through.
Peace between the "will" and the Light -- having a will that doesn't continually insist on having its way -- Shouldn't that be possible?
The 'Father-child' model of divine-human interaction, for all its inadequacies -- implies that the 'Father' does not want a family of zombie children: but does want the live (& therefore difficult) children He has to pay attention, not run into the street without looking, phone home as needed...