MoxieLife asks an important question: "Politics is ultimately dividing. Us versus Them. We are MORE right then they are. Division isn't waling the path of my spirituality.
How did Jesus, Gandhi, Martin Luther King, the Dalai Lama do it? How did they stay in touch with their spiritual path for the higher good and participate in the political landscape?
How do you do it?"
Politics- if pursued in a moral and ethical manner- IS a spiritual act. The ultimate intent of a political race is- or should be- to elect the person who will do the most good for the most people. It is where believe meets the pavement, where spirituality is put to practical use. To stand aloof, pretending one is above such worldly things, is to be less spiritual, not more- you are not doing your best for your fellow man.
But notice I said "if pursued in a moral and ethical manner". This why, although I am not a Republican or a McCain supporter, I have been castigating my fellow UU bloggers for the tone of their posts. It has been said that if one commits an atrocity, one is also committing all future atrocities. We have seen this proven true in the Balkans and the Middle East- but it is even more true in the world of politics.
I believe in karma- not necessarily in a supernatural sense, but as an observed consequence. In the long run, one cannot get good results from evil acts. This is the point that those who support torture don't get... using situational ethics, one can always construct a circumstance in which it seems "right" to commit acts one knows to be wrong- IF that situation is seen as an isolated event, separated from the rest of history. But there is no such thing as an isolated event. You can convince yourself that THIS election is so important that "all's fair"... but all you're really doing is poisoning the electoral process, ensuring that there will never be a clean, fair election.
All it takes to end the cycle- be it armed violence or violence done to the truth- is for one side to hold themselves to a higher standard, even if they think it will cause them to lose. In very short order, they will become recognized as the good guys; they will be able to speak with a moral authority that people will respond to, and the other side cannot answer with. The ultimate victory will be theirs. This, I believe, is why Jesus advised to turn the other cheek... sooner or later, human empathy and the innate sense of fairness will turn society against the aggressor. By accepting the first two slaps, you can change humankind for the better. If nobody does this, the ultimate defeat will be everyone's.
I had thought I could depend on rational, religious bloggers to be good examples of how politics could be discussed in an ethical, and yes, spiritual manner; and did find a couple, with (as might be predicted) ChaliceChick leading the call. But for the majority- with apologies to Simon and Garfunkle, "my words like silent raindrops fell, And echoed In the wells of silence."
I know how I reconcile my spirituality and my politics; I have witnessed how CC and Ms. Theologian reconcile theirs. I can't see how very many other bloggers do.