As Above, So Below: How Paganism taught me political and social humanity

For several days now I’ve been trying to cope with a health problem. I have diverticulitis but can’t get to a doctor for treatment. I only know I have this condition because I was hospitalized for a perforated bowel a couple of years ago that they said was due to diverticulitis. Unfortunately, even with my limited medical coverage, I can’t afford the copays for treatment so I’m just dealing with the extreme pain through rest and meditation……………………….in other words I’m just sort of laying in bed and crying a lot.

But today I am finally starting to feel a little better so here’s a quick post.

Today, nestled among the cat videos, cat pictures, and cat based memes of Facebook, I saw that the Pentacle Project posted an “As above; so below” graphic.

I’ve been Pagan since I was about 13, so I’ve heard this phrase used a million times. I have heard it so often that it was honestly starting to lose any real meaning for me.

Until today.

I’ve spent the last two months in study of income, labor, and racial equality. Prior to that it had always been a hobby of mine. I’m learning so many new things about how insidious racism  and sexism are in this country. I’ve been reading authors like Paul Ortiz, Billy Townsend, Gilbert King, Sojourner Truth, and Howard Zinn. I’ve been studying the social revolution that started in this country long before anyone was considering ending slavery or basic human rights or any other sort of racial, gender, labor, class, or any other kind of equality. And I’ve suddenly realized that all of it can be boiled down to one simple truth…

As above; so below

For me, this means that there should be no difference in sentencing for criminal acts perpetrated by rich or poor or in between.

There should be no such thing as too rich for prison or too pretty for prison.

If George Zimmerman could be judged not-guilty for shooting Trayvon Martin while the child was walking in his own neighborhood, why was Marissa Alexander sentenced to 20 years for firing a warning shot in her own home while trying to fight off a man she had a restraining order against?

Why do the rich end up paying less in taxes than the middle class?

For me, the phrase “As above; so below” reaches across so much more than it’s ritual sense. It should be used as a measuring tool to determine if the lowest in our society is being given the same level of fairness and equality that those who have higher means are being given.

As above; so below: All races are equal, with no one race being held superior to another.

As above; so below: Labor practices should ensure that the guy scrubbing the toilets is treated with the same level of respect and humanity that the highest paid CEO in a company is given.

As above; so below: If both genders are doing the same work, one shouldn’t be given special treatment simply because they demand it. (More on this “Lean in” bullshit in a future post)

As above; so below: Food should not be a privilege.

As above; so below: Medical care should not be a privilege.

In other words, “As above; so below” should be rediscovered as something we live by and actively portray to the outside world…not just something we say to sound mystical.

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About pynomrah

I like stuff, and things.
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