Terry Patten

Can We Create a New Politics With Spiritual and Intellectual Integrity?

It's become a truism, a cliché, to point out something truly remarkable: Human civilization is in the midst of an existential crisis. The ecology of the living Earth -- long pushed beyond its sustainable capacities -- has issued a near-future-stamped "change-or-face-eviction" notice to humankind. Meanwhile, many other human systems -- social, political and cultural -- are simultaneously in crisis. Economic inequality is becoming ever more grotesque. And culture wars over injustice, racism, homophobia and sexism are rapidly intensifying. These are the political crises we collectively recognize.

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5 Heroic Activists Who Demonstrated That the Spiritual Is Political

In the United States, we tend to frame spirituality as a solitary pursuit, but the history of social justice and environmental movements—both at home and elsewhere—calls us to think differently. Some of the most formidable and effective activists have also been dedicated spiritual practitioners. They lived a kind of heroic wholeness in which their personal and political missions harmonized in an activist spirituality. While none were perfect personally or politically, and though we might disagree with them in philosophy or tactics, they all showed what can happen when a transcendent goodness inspires political actions that enact our highest consciousness and virtues.

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What It Really Means to Be 'Woke': Radical Activism Is Spiritual as Well as Political

The word radical means “root.” The Oxford English Dictionary defines radical as “relating to or affecting the fundamental nature of something.” In the U.S. today, our corporate media and our hyper-capitalist public agenda have created the popular misconception that radicalism is simply another word for dangerous extremism. But what a true radical does is “cut to the root” of both political and personal reality and seeks to address the source of problems instead of their symptoms. As we barrel toward environmental and social collapse, we are in a moment that demands radicalism and offers an unprecedented opportunity for root-level solutions and fundamental change to take hold.

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