Reflection: Radiant Morality
By Jane Lee Wolfe
Spiritually, we are deeply afraid of morality. We want to be “free.” We’re way over the churches telling us how to behave. And that’s actually progress: when “spiritual” people are more committed to responding to our behavior than in responding to us as persons, our souls know something is wrong.
Yet the healthy soul is radiantly moral, and that radiant morality is its principal gift to human living on this planet. Only with that kind of morality emanating from a large number of human beings, can peace and justice, joy and kindness, love and humility have permanent foothold on this earth. Radiant morality is the key to all we want for each other now and in the future.
Radiant morality is not some icy righteousness. We all shy away from those folks who are above us all and right about every stand they take. No matter how much Bible or other sacred texts they cite, they do so from some pinnacle they believe they are on and we are not. The icy righteous are very tiresome, and very dangerous for innocent souls looking for someone to tell them the answers.
Radiant morality is based on three things: Peace, Joy, and Love.
Radiant morality is based on three things: Peace, Joy, and Love. These all require a commitment, but commitment of a special kind: We commit to living IN these realities, not creating them. Peace, Joy and Love all exist as states of being we are meant to live in. They are not abstract nouns that fly by now and then; they are permanent realities in which each of us can live.
We can commit to living in Peace, Joy and Love and then learn what that means; we don’t – and in fact can’t – know what that means just by thinking about them. To say, “I commit to living in Peace,” means we are going to learn what that means. We listen, we observe our living, we allow Peace to teach us, help us breathe, honor boundaries. The same with Joy. We commit to joy then learn what that means. To love, and learn what that means.
It’s a lot of learning because we’re not used to experiencing Peace, Joy and Love as places we live. We’re used to moments only, which is how these three show up in the world not based on them. However, Peace, Joy and Love are safe, nurturing and powerful realities in which to live. They take care of us, grow us, and turn us into powerful beings of Radiant Morality.
When we make our life in Peace, Joy and Love, we open up every door the planet has to offer.
When we make our life in Peace, Joy and Love, we open up every door the planet has to offer. We love everyone and learn what that means. We can’t help it, we just do. We rejoice in life, we can’t help it; we are at peace with ourselves and others, we can’t help it. These three “can’t help its” are what turn us into radiantly moral human beings. We affect change in human beings and behaviors by bringing the reality of sustainable peace, joy and love into lives bereft of these in small or large ways.
We lead by reality, not fantasy, by “here for good” rather than fly-by-night, by tough and beautiful compassion, justice and humility rather than unkindness, injustice and arrogance. We are radiantly moral. What does the Lord require of us? To do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with our God. Radiant morality.