The Seeds of God (See YouTube Video Posted Below)
I was asked to write a short meditation on the Quaker concept of the “seed of God” this past week from my friend and pastor of Reedwood Friends Meeting
, Mark Condo. Above is the video of my reflection that was a part of their worship service.
Early Quakers used the language of the “seed of God” and the “seed of the Serpent” to delineate between the work of God in one’s life and the infiltration of harm and evil in our lives and in our systems we create. I love the language of “seed of God” and “seed of the serpent” because it maps directly onto the language I use of “religion of creation” and “religion of empire.”
First there is the seed of God which God has placed within all people, the law that God has written on our hearts. [It is not a ‘piece of God’, for God cannot be divided, nor is it a natural capacity we have. It is that through which God works upon us inwardly…]
Then there is the seed of the serpent, which we have inherited from Adam. This is our weakness of will, and our inability to do good by our own strength. We inherit Adam’s weakness but not his guilt. We become bound to this seed when we make the choice Adam made.
If these are the seeds of the Serpent then the seeds of God stand in direct contrast to these. Spiritual practice is about uprooting these seeds and allowing God to bring us “out of empire” and all of its ways.
How might we as nurture the seed(s) of God not only in ourselves, but in others, in a way that helps us to wake up to the ways in which we (white folks) are still asleep to the violence and trauma that Black, Indigenous, and other People of Color face on a daily basis? What are the ways in which we participate in the big, or even “little” empires, on a daily basis?
I believe that the seeds of God that early Quakers sought to nurture lead to liberation, loving one another, nonviolence, generosity, and equity for all. They are exemplified by what St. Paul called the “fruits of the Spirit.” What could it look like for you and I to be gardeners of the seeds of God? What do we need to undo in our own lives? What do we need to let go off and denounce? What do we need to commit to?
Below I have included various sections with other information and things of interest, including links in the “Dress Down Friday” section (a holdover from the blog). Dig around now or save for later. There’s plenty in here of great value.