23 March, 2016

No Flag Photos Here

Since I began work with the California Judicial Council and working in one of the California State buildings, security and terrorism awareness is a common forefront day-in-day-out routine.  There are days when our office is targeted by numerous causes and protests, therefore security issues is part of the job description.

As someone who's working on a graduate/advanced credential in metaphysics and theology, the possibility of full-time clergy work is well...for no lack of a better term, POSSIBLE for me.  I'm currently pursuing a Masters of Theological Studies degree as well as obtaining a Divine Science practitioners' credential.  I currently serve as one of the local prayer chaplains at my Unity Church.

Since I have begun work with the CJC back in 2014, I've seen and witness several terrorist attacks worldwide that affected my work practices at the office.  It's sad to see tragic events occurring, but at the same time peoples reactions to the event creates more of a cynical reaction within me more than anything else.

I'll say that as a prayer chaplain, if there's anything more annoying than nails on the chalkboard annoyance, it is the uniform aftermath of a tragedy such as a terrorist event, a natural disaster, or a mass shooting:

...along with a profile photo donning the colors of the flag of the country the event occurred in.


My minister/mentor has a term she uses for such situations:

"Why secure the barn NOW after the herd already escaped?"  

In other words, I'm annoyed at the "too little too late" reaction that for the most part, is a totally useless reaction.

I live in the San Francisco Bay Area.  I've given up my auto back in 2013 and utilize BART 90% of the time getting around.  During that time, I've experienced a strike that grounded me, two sets of fare hikes including one this year, people bullying other people off of seats including myself and my pregnant wife, aggressive solicitors harassing passengers, broken escalators, delayed trains, closed restrooms, stranded passengers, and management who placed no protocol in preparing for the infrastructure scheduled decline to the point that "bus bridges" are put in place because tracks and routes are shut down.

But hey, BART "apologizes for the inconvenience,"  so it's OK.
(Please Note SARCASM)

Again a useless response that does little to no good for those who are affected.  On top of that, BART management and employees are still on track for monetary bonuses this year in spite of all I just said about the system, so apparently apologizing for the inconvenience works for them.

So as a prayer chaplain, please excuse me if you see my eyes roll when someone requests that I'll "pray for the tragedy of the day."

See, here's the thing I learned from my training as a prayer chaplain:
1) We're always in a state of prayer
2) Believe it or not, someone or collectively a group was praying for such tragedies.  Not necessarily by praying "God please let this happen" per se, but by remaining in a state of worry and paranoia.  People need to understand that "Oh God, DON'T LET _____HAPPEN" creates the same results as "God please let this happen."
3) All tragedies are self-imposed.  There was a point of choice or decision made by someone or a group of folks long before the event that triggered the event.

I did not carry a "Je Suis Charlie" sign in the aftermath of the Charlie Hebdo shooting. Knowing the history of the organization, knowing that the publisher who was killed had a personal bodyguard, this was an event that even the dumbest of dumbasses could see coming miles away.  Yet the Facebook sheeps showed their true colors by French-coloring their profile pics and/or posting  the "Je Suis Charlie" slogan on their profile.  People came out in droves to various French locations worldwide and held vigils.

Certainly did not prevent the attacks in France that occurred ten months later.

Truth be told, people in key positions are not committed to preventing such tragedies, and they even thrive when Facebookers react with profile changes in the aftermath.  Why?  It demonstrates a sheep mentality rather than a leadership mentality.

As a prayer chaplain, I encourage people to conduct prayer in such a way to tap into their inner Divine Christ quality, that Divine leader within.  Praying in reaction to tragedies undermines that.  It voluntarily gives more power away to the event, and that's what certain people wants.  I'm no conspiracy theorist, but I wouldn't be surprised if certain people actually relish when such event happens.  

So now as people shade their profile pics in the Belgium colors, I continue to mind my own business and to tap into Divine Source.  1) I help others best when I operate from "OVERFLOW" mode, and 2) Sending thoughts and prayers with a changed profile picture is an overused cliche.  Divinity gives more of what we ask for, so why ask for more cliches?