Friday, June 19, 2015

Can grief and forgiveness be harnessed to unite America across racial, political and social divide?

As a Christian, I am ashamed of myself sometimes at my failure to live Christ's love although I believe in the transformative power of forgiveness and his love more than anything.  I also believe that meditation and prayer, regardless of one's religious belief, is irrefutably transformational.

Dylann Roof left a witness to tell the world his act was being done to start a "race war". The murder of nine African Americans at a church prayer meeting in Charleston has our country on the brink of racial and cultural unrest unlike we've seen since the 60's.

However, here's something to ponder.  Dylann didn't state who would win the war, did he?  Can we turn lemons into lemonade?  Can we make their deaths create a transformational healing for our country?  Even in death, we can overcome.

I wouldn't have thought so until I saw the reports of forgiveness from those offended.  I was utterly moved by the beauty of his victims' last acts on earth to show Christ's love.  I'm further moved by the willingness of their families and friends to genuinely offer forgiveness as they struggle with their grief and loss.  Dylann said the love of those killed was so powerful he almost backed out of his plan.  What if that love was multiplied by millions?

Our country is on the brink with our people justifiably angry and hurt. Blame, born from grief and the need to disbelieve such a heinous act could happen, is being pointed at everyone. I'm guilty of blaming psychiatric drugs and the gun shop who sold a weapon to young man with a pending felony that included methamphetamines. I am also guilty of initially hoping, because he had many black Facebook friends, that he couldn't possibly be racist and was used somehow by a sinister force to murder.   

Upon reflection and prayer, I realized we have any number of options at our disposal in response.

1.  We can blame everyone but ourselves
2.  We can do violence in the name of revenge and unmet reparations
3.  We can call on politicians (who can't fix anything) to solve our nation's disease

. . . OR 
4.  We can collectively decide to heal and ask God/Universe/Jesus/Creator/Goddess/Buddah/Allah or whatever higher power for good with whom we personally connect for intervention.

God gave me an inspiration today.  I'm reminded of my favorite verse from Matthew, 7:7.

"Keep on asking, and you will receive what you ask for. Keep on seeking, and you will find. Keep on knocking, and the door will be opened to you." 

Keep on knocking.  Keep on asking. It's the first rule of sales.  It's also the best action to take if one wants to manifest reality in the physical dimension we share.   

I had heard of a meditation (prayer) group who brought together large numbers of people specifically focused in meditation (prayer) at Washington DC crime reduction, so I did a little Googling to find a report about the group.  They met repeatedly and their goal of a 25% crime reduction was achieved in eight weeks. reports: 

"The most well-known experiment of a group meditation for the well-being of others was the one conducted by the Transcendental Meditation programs in Washington D.C. in June - July 1993.  The theory was that if 4,000 practitioners of  Transcendental Meditation and the TM- Siddhi program meditated for a two month period their efforts would bring the crime rate down ten percent.  The crimes documented in this study were violent crimes including homicide, rape, aggravated assault, and robbery.  According to the data, the group began with about 600 meditators and increased each week.  It was not until the fifth week where the number of meditators increased to about 2500 that the crime rate began to decrease significantly (6%) and continued to decrease as more and more meditators were added.  By week 7 there were 4000 meditators and the crime rate had decreased by 16% and then to 24% by the end of the eighth and final week.  Their findings were that with the increase in the numbers of meditators the more powerful the effect on the crime rate.  This decrease also lasted beyond the time of the study. The TM people have conducted similar projects in the United States and in the world with similar results.
I don't believe this positive effect of meditation on societies is solely unique to the Transcendental Meditation groups.  I believe that all people who whole-heartedly want to improve the quality of life for all when meditating together can have the same result.  According to the ratio given by TM for how many people in a population can effect a change, with the world having now reached 7 billion people one percent of the world's population would be 70 million people, and the square root of 1% would be 8,367." 

Why should we escalate a bloody racial war that a mentally ill racist wanted?  Will we let him have his way or are we going to transcend it and build a better world instead?

City by city, we can build and focus weekly together.  Every person in America who is committed to ending racial divide and all the hurt that goes along with it, can simply stop what we're doing once a week for five minutes to collectively meditate (pray).  Imagine our mainstream media covering that!  Imagine how much stronger our meditation (prayer) will be with the help of social media.  Local media outlets would be all over it.  Trust me.  That's all it takes for us to change the conversation.  Cultural Activism!

It's our choice.  There's indication it works and it beats everything else we're doing. 

Who wants to help organize the Marion County Indianapolis focused group?  I would love it to be Reverend Harrison and Indy's Ten-Point prayer Coalition.  It can easily grow to become a millions-PLUS-point prayer coalition if we all come together.

Indy is the home to Indiana Black Expo, the nation's largest African American conference. Maybe, just maybe, it could start right here from America's HeartLand and ground zero of RFRA.  We need all to come together now more than ever and lay down swords and commit to peace. 

Let's come together and do this :)

Mely Hubbard


  1. So you write a lengthy post expressing your religious beliefs and then at the end you take a shot at the law, RFRA, that protects your right to express and practice those beliefs? Of course, 30 other states have RFRAs (either by statute or court decision) and we also have the law at the national level. Yet some folks decided to misrepresent the law for political gain...which you went along with.

  2. I advocate for both religious and personal freedom.