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Brock Turner, Donald Trump, Omar Mateen: Our Deepest Spiritual Challenges

Flickr.com, Karl Schneider

Flickr.com, Karl Schneider

A slap on the wrist for a convicted rapist caught in the act. A presidential candidate who campaigns on anger, fear, misogyny, and building walls. A gunman who joins the ranks of the countless gunmen before him by mowing down civilians with weapons designed for a war zone.

These stories filling our facebook feeds are emblematic of our political, economic, and social struggles. Yet, at their core, they demonstrate the deepest spiritual challenges we face today.

Hate is a spiritual challenge.

Treating others as less than human is a spiritual challenge.

Defensiveness is a spiritual challenge.

The beautiful, prayer-filled vigils that have been organized in the aftermath of recent tragedies are absolutely necessary for our collective mourning—but they are a downstream spiritual solution. I am tired—we are bone-crushingly tired—of gathering together and weeping over the bodies of raped women and murdered innocents.