Healing and Justice: A Call for Immediate Action on Health Care
Fall Equinox is the time when the sun moves from the sign of the healer (Virgo) to the sign of the scales, balance, justice (Libra). The connection between healing and justice has never been more clear than today. President Trump and Republicans in Congress, at the behest of the billionaire donors who set their legislative priorities, are making a last-ditch effort to gut the Affordable Care Act (ACA, aka Obamacare) and Medicaid through the Graham-Cassidy bill. This bill is even worse than the ones narrowly defeated last summer. For a summary of the harm it would do, click here. If the bill is passed, people will quite literally die as a result.
We’ve just received the great news that John McCain intends to cast a critical vote against the measure. This may doom it. But we won’t know until the vote is actually taken or the bill is pulled. So we can’t afford to let up our opposition to it just yet. For actions you can take to fight it, see below.
Only the most privileged among us can afford to focus on our own personal spiritual healing journeys and self-actualization without also attending to immediate survival issues. Obviously, our physical health is one of those. Access to affordable, high-quality, culturally sensitive health care is one of the key requirements for survival in today’s world. That access is currently under attack. To paraphrase a common activist chant, “No justice, no healing.”
Spiritual practices such as prayer, meditation, visualization, ceremony, and shamanic journeys can help move us toward a more just world. But they are not enough. Sometimes we have to act in the material world – speak up, stand up, sit in – for what we believe. Spiritual leaders – Mahatma Gandhi, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., Starhawk, Joanna Macy, Bishop Gene Robinson, Rabbi Denise Eger, Rev. William Barber II, to name just a few – have known this for ages. Many of us already do so in powerful ways.
Now is one of those times when we must act.
We don’t have to take away from our own spiritual growth to act on behalf of others. We can learn from the trees. A forest is a collective organism in which the health of one being is integrally connected with the health of the whole. Research shows that healthy, well-nourished trees pass nutrients through their roots to other trees that need them. Those trees provide help in turn when they can. Can we humans do less?
This weekend and early next week, celebrate Fall Equinox, honor the sign of Libra, and emulate the trees by supporting Americans’ right to access affordable health care. Call your own Senators and representatives. If you live in a state with Democratic Congresspeople who oppose the bill, call progressive people in red states and help them contact their Senators by clicking here. Also call Senators who are on the fence by using this tool (if you call Sen. McCain, thank him!) Send comments to the Senate Finance Committee in advance of their hearing on Monday 9/25 at 2 pm EST – click here for details.
Thank you! And happy Fall.