“Unpacking” Religion and Politics

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Oh no, I didn’t! I just commented on a political post on Facebook giving my opposing perspective gently. But, I still did. I try very hard not do so and have been so far successful till today.

I think your political affiliation is a product of your upbringing, your environment, your values, etc., etc. I was raised Catholic, but with very liberal, left-wing parents. I went to college and lived in California for all my twenty-something years. I have always called myself a Democrat and was proud to do so and had many around me that supported my point of view. Then I moved to the south for the next decade and some of my life where everyone around me was very conservative, right wing and I found myself quite unsupported in my political opinions.

With all these influences in my life, I have become more independent, but leaning left. I try not to bring up my politics, but I cringe on the inside when right wing friends and former colleagues here in the south start party slamming and heatedly spew contempt for the other party and our president. Then there’s the tea party… On the other hand, my parents are so left that I can’t talk to them either. They do the same thing from the other side. All of this has unfortunately made me so apolitical and less of a participant in my civic duty. I have to get back in and share my voice despite the muckity-muck.

In the last year, I have firmly committed myself to God, no wavering and have decided to do this in the religion of my upbringing. I like my life better doing so. That’s a personal choice. But, I totally respect my agnostic, yet very moral dad. I don’t think he’ll go to hell. Even Pope Francis doesn’t think atheists will go to hell if they “do good.”

I am a teacher, but am currently a stay at home mom. Most teachers have heard the words “unpacking the standards.” It basically means looking at the standards that tell us what our students must know and breaking those words down–both simplifying and elaborating on them to so that we clearly understand exactly what is expected and how to get our students to that point. At least that is how I would define it after twelve years of teaching.

So today, I am unpacking the ten commandments from a political perspective. All this was prompted from a Facebook post! Ha!

  1. Thou shall not have other Gods. This means put God above all else, no false idols. Thou shall not idolize a political party as being the best, the highest authority. Think first. Then if you agree–great.
  2. Thou shall not use the Lord’s name in vain. No OMGs – unless the G is goodness or gracious! Hmmm not sure I can work that in!
  3. Keep the Sabbath holy. No political posts on Sundays please!
  4. Honor thy father and mother. No bashing your parents’ politics. Debate peacefully.
  5. Thou shall not kill. Do not kill ones’ spirit by bashing their beliefs. Respect different opinions and try to look through their lenses instead of immediately passing judgment.
  6. Thou shall not commit adultery. Talking to you politicians! We’ll find out.
  7. Thou shall not steal. Do not steal one’s dignity by being disrespectful to them for their political views.
  8. Thou shall not lie. Do not spread political propaganda.
  9. Do not covet thy neighbor’s wife. Again…if you’re going into politics we’ll know about your affairs sooner or later.
  10. Thou shall not covet thy neighbors’ goods…no jealousy. Not sure how I can work that into politics… 🙂

And that my folks is my quick take on “unpacking” the ten commandments for politics.