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There is a great divide in the debate over the coronavirus, mask-wearing and immunizations, a divide propagated in spiritual communities. Courtesy photo
Columns Soul on Fire

Soul on Fire: Can you be too spiritual for COVID-19?

I‘ve been avoiding taking this issue head-on in this column. But things are getting pretty crazy out here. How did a virus become so politicized? I do not know. But here we are, wholly polarized as a country, community, and household, in some cases.

It’s not even about fear, which is a handy shaming slogan for spiritual gurus pontificating about “rising above” the illness. “Fear is the real pandemic,” they preach, urging the followers to strive to reach the mountaintop where they can successfully bypass all human frailties.

People are assured by their spiritual leaders or yoga teachers that they can attain immunity with their thoughts and raising their vibration if only they believe.

Well, I’m here to tell you that a virus is not a living thing. It isn’t out to get you. A virus has only one purpose, and that is to survive and multiply. It multiplies by finding host cells to adhere to — in the case of COVID-19, this virus prefers your nice moist lungs. Elementary science is going on here.

I’ve traveled to foreign countries that required me to take vaccines. I didn’t love that idea, but a case of hepatitis will make you a believer. I never thought of it as a third-world conspiracy to take away my rights.

We have had many advancements that have taken us out of the Dark Ages and into the modern world we enjoy today.

Immunizations are one of the miracles that helped usher that in for us.

Today we are at a great divide in the debate over the virus, mask-wearing, and immunizations.

And the divide is being propagated in the spiritual communities that I write about and am a part of for Soul on Fire.

What I see around some spiritual communities and yoga centers is pressure to keep the doors open.

The cry that the show must go on from the spiritual leaders who need an audience to articulate a spiritual message to the congregants.

Gurus insist that wearing a mask is admitting defeat in a group of unvaccinated people who don’t feel the need to divulge that status to the unsuspecting compromised in their community.

Yes, by all means, let’s get back to hugging each other. Shaking hands. A slight cough or sneeze never hurt anybody — until it does.

The lack of responsibility that I am observing in my spiritual community has me questioning my religion.

And indeed, the leadership, or lack thereof, around navigating this global health crisis.

Stephen Dinan, founder and CEO of The Shift Network, wrote a column titled “Anatomy of Delusion: How Otherwise Conscious People Descended into the Darkness” and said there is more to fear than a vaccine or pandemic. And it’s called “conspirituality.”

“And so again, there’s an alliance between anti-authority right-wing folks, who often use Biblical rhetoric about evil in their fights, and New Age conspirituality folks who are now joining forces to overthrow the shared enemy. In some ways, this is the most dangerous version of the paradigm breakdowns that I’ve discussed, resulting in cultish, black-or-white crusaders against a simplistic evil empire. We are either on the redemption team, or we are sheep.”

My belief system has a vision of a world that works for everyone and that we are all One. One Nation. One World. What hurts you hurts me.

Every thought, I think, has an effect and every action that much more.

Back when I went to school, they taught Civics. Civic duty. Care for each other and our communities. Civility. Graciousness. Giving back.

These days, most people are thinking of themselves and their sovereignty, which is excellent. I may have even written about it in this column.

How we need to take responsibility for ourselves and in finding our Divinity, we get closer to knowing God. But it can’t just be what’s in it for us individually. It has to be the collective. We are in this together. We are, after all, the Human Race.

If God is in everything and everyone, indeed God is in our government and those people who have elected to dedicate their lives to the service of others. Public servants. Scientists. The people who have developed the vaccine. The vaccine itself. All from God.

When I do spiritual counseling for people, I mostly find out what has separated them from God.

What has separated them from family, from their community? This leads to the beliefs that have caused their unhappiness. We can heal from that point. There is no separation except what is in our minds.

And this current divide that says you’re not spiritual enough to avert the virus and that you’re a sheep to comply with CDC guidelines and government experts, which are also part of God, is causing the most harm.

This is being touted by people who have taken authority of your sovereignty in your places of worship or yoga centers and news feeds.

It’s OK to want sovereignty and freedom. Maybe not at the risk of others being locked down again because we can’t get a lid on a global pandemic.

People are still getting sick and ultimately dying, and the degrees of separation are getting increasingly smaller for me.

How about you? We must by now know someone who has been sick or has died of COVID. Maybe that should be the line in our different philosophies.

In separating us with our viewpoints, we are getting further away from what makes us a civilization. It puts out our fire.

And maybe that is what will be our demise, our fall from grace. Not the virus or the vaccine at all.

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