New Age Spirituality and Systemic Oppression Part II
Disclaimer: This is my personal observation and personal judgment. There is no right or wrong on this, it’s how I feel. This is in line with what I wrote in this blog post two years ago.
New Age spirituality proclaims love and light, that we must love our brothers and sisters as we love ourselves and that we are all one all the time. That’s fine and good, but what I find fascinating is the level of silence from the broader “New Age” community when it comes to the travesties of justice against Black and Brown and impoverished people in the United States and across the world. Experiences that keep those who are oppressed from experiencing “love and light” all the time.
My own experiences in New Age Thought has propped up my belief that New Age as a line of spirituality tradition is becoming more of a hiding ground for fragile minded people who can’t deal with the realities of life and how their privilege contributes to other people’s pain. There is a gap in rhetoric and praxis. To be frank, I think that many New Agers are undercover and/or benign White Supremacist. New Age dogma makes it to easy for law of attraction enthusiast to dismiss systemic issues as something that was brought upon ourselves because of our mindsets. As if slavery, colonization and genocide are blips on a history timeline and as if White Supremacy hasn’t created the cruelly lopsided world that we live in today. ( If you think I am lying, google any New Age spiritual conference and look at the roster of speakers.)
New Agers love to quote Dr. King and Gandhi (an unfortunate racist), but rarely do we see them apply these teachings to address the ill effects of the systemic oppression experienced by people here in the US. It’s not enough for New Agers or spiritual people (of all faith traditions, mind you) to use God-like rhetoric, especially in the realm of making money off of this rhetoric and then be nowhere to be found when the shit hits the fan. It’s not enough to shout “love and light” when all around, people are dying for a lack of love and light. Seriously- whose work are you truly doing? By all means, charge for your craft- your right work, the healing sessions, classes, lectures, workshops etc. Sustain yourself but please don’t sell God and call it healing when truly it’s nothing more than denial of reality and magical thinking.
I am firm in my understanding of this: Spirituality is work. It’s not docile and meek. It stands in divine power to smite the evil that keeps us from being our truly loving selves. Those leading a truly spiritual life know that the tools given to us by the Creator are to be used first and foremost to help us navigate the bullshit and the joy that is this life. It’s not about making anything easier or making a lot of money off of other people’s pain. It’s not about allowing us to pretend that if we want it bad enough that we can out manifest our lessons, have all the good that we want in life and ignore the bad. Spirituality -true spirituality is not about ignorance, denial, or magical thinking. It’s about faith, action, equality, justice and most of all Love. Spiritual tools, when used as they are intended, give us the courage to stand up, speak out, share truth, to love what we think is unloveable (namely ourselves), and to hold ourselves accountable when we are not being our most loving selves.
& that’s all I got.