Catholics Are Baaaaad And Star Wars Is Awesome / by Dana Bergstrom

I am not a big fan of divisiveness. It may have started with the concept of believers vs. non-believers that was such a big deal in my childhood. So-and-so were non-believers and we needed to pray for them, be a witness for Jesus to them, we needed to show a good example so these non-believers could learn to become "good" and wouldn't end up in Hell.

The idea that we're all somehow going to be separated into the good and the bad, the right and the wrong, the righteous and the evil has always felt awful to me, even though I felt I had to go along with it as a kid.

Each time I'd walk into Neumann, a local Catholic High School, for a sporting event as a teenager, this horrible, heavy feeling would fill my chest. I was told the Catholics also worshiped Mary, the mother of Jesus, and that was baaaaad, as in unforgivable baaaaad. I recall standing in the school lobby on many occasions, looking around at everybody while holding my heart. It hurt. Because of the "sin" of worshiping Mary it seemed that the Catholics didn't stand a chance of getting into heaven when they finally croaked. And because religion was keeping us from attending the same school, it was like the final separation had already begun. We were just kids! I felt incredibly sad about the whole thing.

I contrast that painful feeling of separation in the Catholic High School with the time I saw the original Star Wars in 1977 as an eight year old. The part that had a massive impact on me was the cantina scene where this fantastic variety of super freaky looking creatures are all chatting, listening to music and having a really great time. My body tingled and my heart swelled when I first saw it. Oh my goodness! Such extreme, wild, external differences and they're all hanging out and enjoying each other. Everybody is different and so happy together together together! The whole idea made me crazy giddy.

Whenever I'm on the dance floor with people of all kinds - drag queens and straight jocks, lesbians and gays, tall and short people, nerds, wealthy and poor and wide and thin peeps, and gorgeous beings of every ethnicity, I think of the cantina scene and get a warm, fuzzy, super energized feeling. And I go a little nuts. I become overly animated, my dance moves get bigger and I can BaReLy cOnTaiN mY JoY! It's so much better than the Star Wars cantina scene because I'M IN IT and we're all dancing and jumping around! TOGETHER!

This is why I love the idea that everybody has an Inner Bully and an Inner Being and that we're not different from each other in any real way. We're all in this human game together and the way we interact is simply determined by what inner voice we're listening to. Nobody is bad for listening to their fear-based Inner Bully, they're just forgetting who they really are as their True Self, their Inner Being. Nothing to get worked up about. We all forget at times and shit happens. No biggie.

So you cannot convince me that any one person or group is baaaaad. I don't care who it is - serial killers, terrorists, racists, misogynists, greedy politicians, etc. I'm not buying it. Sure, some people may need to be locked up or stopped for others' safety, but hating, fearing or calling them bad doesn't do anybody any good. People who are hurting themselves and others are just calling for love because they're listening to their Inner Bully instead of their True Selves.

My heart knows and it's always known that we're all in this together and, ultimately, we're here to learn to love ourselves, to love each other and have the wonderful experience of life, as messy and beautiful as it all is.