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Faith of a mustard seed

by Barbara Woods-Washington

Barbara A. Woods Washington, M. Div.

Barbara A. Woods Washington, M. Div.

“And so we have taken our struggle into the streets as the labor movement took its struggle into the streets, as Jesus Christ led the multitude through the streets of Judea. The plain and simple fact is that until we went into the streets the federal government was indifferent to our demands… It was not until the Freedom Riders were brutalized in Alabama that the 1946 Supreme Court decision banning discrimination in interstate travel was enforced and it was not until construction sites were picketed in the North that Negro workers were hired. Those who deplore our militants, who exhort patience in the name of a false peace, are in fact supporting segregation and exploitation. They would have social peace at the expense of social and racial justice.” One last look at the Message to America given by A. Philip Randolph at the 1963 March on Washington from the steps of The Lincoln Monument.

When I taught the course “Introduction To Philosophy” at Bennett College in Greensboro, NC, I used as the Text book “Philosophy: An Introduction to The Art of Wondering” by James L. Christian which, by 1989 was already in it’s 4th edition. Just the Title alone is an education… for life. To consider WONDERING an ART is a most powerful gift for me.

‘Teras’, one of several words used in biblical scripture for the translated ‘wonder’, is most often used in conjunction with ‘signs’— ‘signs and wonders’ so deeply rooted in Truth that it has the affect of causing one to shrink and tremble; to stand in awe. I suspect that ‘wondering’ is required in our times as it relates to the ability to ‘see thru’, to ‘think thru’; to ‘look beyond, and to ‘think beyond’ the constant base of LIES being given to the people as a nation. To ‘wonder as I wander’ implies… a way of life.

We live in a system that fails to teach ‘thinking’ to the mass. In fact, it is purposed for, as the song goes “ticky tacky– little boxes” where every person is molded and shaped by the knowledge base to become one and the same. Purpose-LESSly driven to participate in a “life” directed towards a single aim. To “think outside “The Box” is not only a very lonely and despised place, but a very misunderstood and… rejected place. This ‘mindlessness’ continues to contribute to this— “DOUBLE souls; Double thoughts; DOUBLE MIND… UNSTABLE… in all that we think; all that we say; all that we do; ALL THAT WE ARE.

In teaching children to Think, I engage them in a very real discussion about Incarceration. The Socratic method of Questioning… WORKS. Several questions leading them to a simple mathematical question: if Four Friends rob a bank how many of them go to prison because this Act was their idea? So 3 people have lost their Freedom because they did not do their own thinking?

“Those who deplore our militants, who exhort patience in the name of a false peace, are in fact supporting segregation and exploitation.” Contrary to popular belief, ‘our militants’, I think, is perhaps a misnomer given to some most effective Black Leaders in America; who ARE the ones that ‘think outside The Box’. Time and time again they have shown us “The Art of Wondering”— knowing for themselves; knowledge of themselves living FREE— Outside “The Box”. The late Dr. Jonathan Jackson in our “Christian Education” classroom became revered for always saying “You can’t put God in a box”. Mic check: “GOD IS OUTSIDE The Box!

by email: mustardseedfaith@outlook.com

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