This morning I read a fascinating article entitled “League of Nationalists” published by The Economist. The article discusses the growing trend towards nationalism in response to globalization. A book I’m currently reading, Marketing 3.0, notes the same paradox. Somehow, the process of globalization has reinforced tribalism. Whatever your political views, many see Brexit and the recent election of Donald Trump as a reaction towards nationalism (or tribalism of you prefer) against globalization. Fear and distrust on both sides of the aisle appear to be running rampant.
But who’s right?
I don’t claim to have all the answers to this very complex question but I would like to make a few suggestions for those who love the truth. My thoughts about dealing with people who are different have largely been molded by reflections on the writings of Miroslav Volf, who wrote “Exclusion and Embrace” and also by John Zizioulas who wrote, “Being as Communion.” More importantly, my thoughts have been shaped by historical circumstances that have had an irreversible impact on the world we know and claim to love.
In particular, a small sect of Jews had, and announced to the world, an epiphany. The epiphany was this: God loves, and accepts, people who are very different from those within our own tribe. The idea that God loved, and actually accepted, people who were different was a hard truth to stomach, much as it is for us today. The challenge for those of us who believe that God loves people who are different is to live in a way that reflects the announcement.