Conservatism proper is a legitimate, probably necessary, and certainly widespread attitude of opposition to drastic change – F.A. Hayek, from his essay “Why I Am Not A Conservative.”
In my last post, I shared a quote from Russell Kirk’s essay “The Essence of Conservatism.” I’ve since revisited some of his other observations in that piece, along with related commentary from others on similar themes such as the one expressed above, and found more than a few worth sharing.
We have turned what were useful symbols and myths from ancient times about a Source, and held them as truth in their illusory forms, denying ourselves the privilege and gift of understanding Life in its even greater and grander forms here and now. Worse, we diminish our opportunities to use Life for the individual and collective good now by failing to expand and grow and evolve. Instead, we’re almost constantly limiting our potential by adhering to the invented and even silly decrees of some fictitious Being which is Itself apparently unwilling to be more enlightened.[From my book Life Will Answer.]
Our Constitution granted each and every one of us the freedom to believe or not believe as we decide. That protection applies to all of us. When one group has decided by some form of spiritual osmosis that their version of the unverifiable and occasionally insane has been decreed to be the new Law, and thus their political mission is to ensure that is so, then it is up to the rest of us to put that crazy back where it belongs: away from public influence. Continue reading →
For those who choose to believe there is a God or Allah or ‘It’ as one may define the Intelligent Designer/Creator/Higher Mind/Spirit … Whatever, what if that Entity was … more? And for those who choose not to believe in a God or Allah, or ‘It’ as one may define the Intelligent Designer/Creator/Higher Mind/Spirit … Whatever, what if our experiences about and in Life could be … more? Think about this for a moment: What if God and/or Life were indeed even more than what mankind has chosen to believe and create? What if all of Life could be better? [From my bookLife Will Answer.]
Politicians’ religions — and I use the plural on purpose, because there’s no one religion that gets to trump the others — should be a source of their strength and of their empathy, not of their agendas…. We should be even warier of politicians and other leaders who wrap policy in dogma, claiming holy guidance. That’s a dangerous road to take. At the far, bitter end of it lie theocracies and brutal extremists.
Asking the 1% to make contributions to the society and governing system which provided them the means to attain their great wealth and success should not automatically be viewed from the tint of ideological frames as punishment, nor is it a blind handout to the lazy. We just need to recognize that conditions (including our own assessments and hopes for the future) have changed dramatically and in many cases have been diminished far beyond our worst fears. An unfortunate but understandable consequence of our great progress and the complexities of modern society….
As I suggested in last week’s post—despite the apparent evidence to the contrary—there are not just a select few who have been deemed by an external Supreme Being or by Fate to be blessed, while the rest of us, for whatever puzzling reason, have been doomed to just endure the drudgery of living every day. It is nonsense to think that the vast majority of us are so doomed because, for whatever other odd reasons, that is some God’s/Allah’s/Whoever’s Will for us. It’s just as nuts and destructive to believe we just have to trust that all we are enduring is for some higher and better reason in the Next Life.
The pessimism within significant sectors of the GOP is more than the unhappiness partisans typically feel when the other side is in power. It’s rooted in a belief that things have fundamentally changed in America, and there is an ominous possibility they just can’t be put right again. 
Should I believe that Jesus is my personal savior? Or should I believe that God made a covenant with the Jews requiring every Jew to keep the commandments of the Torah? Should I believe that Mohammad was Allah’s last prophet and that Ali, the prophet’s cousin and husband of his daughter Fatima, ought to have been the first caliph, or that Mohammad was Allah’s last prophet and that Ali was the fourth and last caliph? Should I believe that the resurrected prophet Moroni dictated the Book of Mormon to Joseph Smith? Or that Ahura Mazda, the benevolent Creator, is at cosmic war with the malevolent Angra Mainyu? And on and on it goes. Only the most arrogant provincialism could allow someone to believe that the holy documents that happen to be held sacred by the clan he was born into are true, while all the documents held sacred by the clans he wasn’t born into are false.