July 26, 2021
Filed In: Philosophy
I’m old enough to remember when being woke was enough to get you made fun of on SNL. What started as a fringe idea has now overrun the academy, government, the armed services, public health, and media. The essential contradiction of wokeism is that while it claims to be awake, to be fully embraced, you must deny reality. One of the clearest signs of this is the pervasive belief in the fallacy that America is no better today than it was in 1776.
This is a heavier topic than usual. I like to keep this blog light and digestible, but I think there’s an element of wokeism at play in our spirituality. It’s easy to believe that we are no better today than we were yesterday, or even a decade ago.
When we go to Confession, we repeat the same litany of sins, sometimes adding a few but seldom removing any. This is a grating experience. We get the impression that we’re not improving.
Our expectations of instant renewal and transformation are unrealistic. We must take concrete steps to live and love the Law. Change, however, is slow. We’re working out our salvation and overcoming the innate character flaws that will be with us for life.
Like modern wokeism, spiritual wokeism is a lie. We’re better than we used to be. We may be committing the same sins, but we’re probably committing them less frequently. That’s progress! We may be making the same mistakes, but in different ways. That’s progress!
The Christian life isn’t about a life lived perfectly. It’s embracing our human flaws and, through grace, living out our vocation fully despite them.
We reject the fantasy of wokeism in public life, and we should reject it in our spiritual lives, too.