Leaving a Controlling Community

"Leaving the Flock" cartoon by nakedpastor David Hayward

“Leaving the Flock” cartoon by nakedpastor David Hayward

It’s up to us to decide to make the definitive cut of the bonds that tie us to a constrictive and controlling community. With one decisive swing of the axe, we can separate ourselves and set ourselves apart. Of course, they would interpret our decision and act as violent, rash, unnecessary and permanent. But this is the only way we can find our own mind, our own voice, and even our own life… our right to be independent. It is a prophetic act against the community. But it is a prophetic act for ourselves.

“Within what one calls religions- Judaism, Christianity, Islam, or other religions- there are again tensions, heterogeneity, disruptive volcanoes, sometimes texts, especially those of the prophets, which cannot be reduced to an institution, to a corpus, to a system. I want to keep the right to read these texts in a way which has to be constantly reinvented. It is something which can be totally new at every moment.” (Derrida)

When the prophets who emerge out of any tradition are alive and speaking, they are always considered outside the established community, and even enemies of it! They stand beyond the tradition, rebellious, and defying all labels, untamable and dangerous. They refuse to be labeled and cannot be claimed by any certain religion. Their concern is for the truth of which no one institution can assert singular ownership. Eventually, their stories and words are co-opted back into the very tradition they exposed and challenged. But they’ve been changed, or adjusted, or explained, or idolized, and have lost their primal potency.

We need to finally recognize this cyclical habit communities default to and decide to break free to discover the wild and uncontrollable spirit beyond the community’s control.

Explore then employ this spirit in your new life that you can create for yourself.

You may be a prophet!

(*** Join us in my online community The Lasting Supper. We get what this means!)

 

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