Tag Archives: Possessing the Secret of Joy

Resistance

“Resistance is the secret of joy,” writes Alice Walker (Possessing the Secret of Joy)

Perhaps, in a manner akin to a mathematical equation, the words could be reversed.
Perhaps, joy is a secret of resistance.

Joy is, at one and the same time, personal and communal.
Joy comes when communities and individuals are strengthened, nourished, sustained.
Joy comes when individuals and communities welcome and embrace one another in love.
Joy comes when communities and communities affirm all God’s children.
Joy comes when individuals and communities (including God’s whole creation) thrive.
Joy comes when communities and individuals experience well-being and wholeness.
Joy comes when individuals and communities love and practice kindness.
Joy comes when communities and individuals acknowledge evil and sin, repent, and seek repair, reparation, and justice.

To work for such joy is to reject the lies that we are made for enmity … the lies that we are made to “other” and fear and hate people from whom we differ … the lies that creation is ours to exploit … the lies of white supremacy and patriarchy and homophobia and all systems and structures of oppression.

To work for such joy is to resist.

“Resistance is the secret of joy.”

Joy is a secret of resistance.

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Filed under Books, Human Rights

The Plague and covid-19

If I were to ask people to guess my favorite novel – the novel that has most influenced me, I think only a few people would get the right answer. The Lord of the Rings and Possessing the Secret of Joy come in high on the list, but they stand just short of The Plague.

IMG-1510The Plague was written by Albert Camus, who as my friend Alonzo Johnson points out was Algerian – his parents were French – but he was born in Algeria. The novel tells the story of a plague sweeping through the city of Oran. It explores the impact on people and how people respond.

Today my friend, Catherine Gordon, posted a link to a reflection on The Plague, Camus on the Coronavirus“.

The author writes: “But there can never be safety — and that is why, for Camus, we need to love our fellow damned humans and work without hope or despair for the amelioration of suffering. Life is a hospice, never a hospital.”

Even as an “at risk, vulnerable” person on PAUSE (yes – that is New York’s name for it) may I love; may I work to ameliorate suffering.

This day. And all days.

I have tracked down my copy, at least the third I have owned, and will read it again starting this evening. Related posts may follow.

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Filed under Books, Current Events, Friends, New York