If you want to know what’s going on in the world, just look at graffiti.
I swear, take a walk through the Lower East Side of New York, and you’ll get a better and more accurate depiction of the issues than even Buzzfeed will report.
And let’s be honest here: I love a good street art display. Banksy has taken the possibilities of a spray can from a crude gang tag, to a high concept art instillation. While all the while remaining anonymous…and dodging the law.
#goals…except the whole breaking the law part lol
Because it reflected, what I personally believe, is the most detrimental way of thinking, that frankly is F-ing a lot of things up.
And that, is spiritual relativism.
The graffiti read:
Now, let me just pause. Everything this is saying, is good. We should embrace peace. Love. Acceptance. Forgiveness. Those are good things. Things we should strive for.
But frankly, what makes this so damaging, is that it is taking all the things that Jesus came and died for, and just kind of putting those watered down themes under this blanket of vanilla “spirituality.”
What are we doing when we take God out of what we believe?
What happens when we accept and embrace some of the teachings, and tie it up in a bow, and forget to say that God was the one who bought the gift?
Because that’s what’s dangerous about this relative way of thinking.
That message this artist tagged, it sounds really good. Really right on. Like, of course. Who in their right mind would argue with that?
Who doesn’t want peace? Or love? Or forgiveness. – Only a bigot would be against that. Only a nincompoop.
But by being “spiritual” and relative, leaving God out of the equation, what are you actually doing? Really?
Living that way because it makes you feel like a good person? Okay, sure. Yeah, I guess I could get on board with that whole, meditate-for-spirituality-and-center-my-mind thing. Relax for 5 minutes. Focus on being “zen” so that I don’t freak out when there’s a line out the door at Starbucks or I get behind a perpetual slow walker on the sidewalk. #MoveItOrLoseIt,Tourists
Because when you take God out of spirituality…it becomes about the self.
It becomes about how it makes me feel. How it can improve my life. How I can grow. I’ll do this to see what I can get.
And that, is the wrong approach.
True spirituality is about God. And honoring what He did. It is a relationship. How I can serve Him? How I can live out His will and spread His love to others? How can I worship Him? Knowing the price He paid for my freedom, how will I respond?
That’s the difference.
That’s where this spiritual relativism does a face plant into a pile of poo.
Or gets hit by a bus, a la, Regina George.
Spiritual relativism, it allows what you feel to be true. This is my truth. This is my religion. My salvation. My truth.
It’s that precise thinking that leads to destruction.
I can vouch for that…having lived through a period of anorexia where my body image was my religion.
But hey, it was my truth right?
God reminded me that His truth leads to freedom. To life. To healing.
There was nothing relative about it..
It was absolute.
The East Village, with all its vegan restaurants and hidden alternative music venues, makes you believe you’re taking in air that is progressive. Innovative. On the cutting edge. And graffiti like this just adds to the confusion we’re facing, navigating this life.
It’s a slippery slope, relativism. Because when we take God out of right and wrong, out of our thinking, out of our world view, we’re setting ourselves up to fail. We’re inviting vulnerability. We’re opening morality up for interpretation.
So what are we going to do about it?
Maybe I don’t have a spray can, or the balls to break the law with my spectacular tagging skills, but I do have a voice. I do have the way I live my life. The words I speak. The way I treat other people.
And so do you.
Faith doesn’t have to be tagged on the side of an East Village bakery-by-day-speakeasy-by-night building. It’s tagged in our hearts. And maybe, just maybe, if we all let that show, we can stop the slippery slope. We can keep God from getting “relative-ized”out of the picture.
Because keeping God in spirituality doesn’t make us close-minded, backward thinking cotton headed ninny muggins.
It makes us children of God.
And that’s a tag I’m okay with.