A very wise man once said, “What has been will be again, and what has been done will be done again; there is nothing new under the sun.” To declare oneself “woke” in 2021, is merely declaring re-discovery of some aspect of humanity that has existed and been demonstrated for centuries. History shows entire cultures can indeed seem to be in a coma as its members blindly embrace really bad things together. (Consider Chinese ‘lotus feet’, or the Holocaust!). It stands to reason there is also a time for awakening. (Consider the “Great Awakening”, circa 1720.). This 2021 “woke” fad is most likely barely a blip in the history of human whims and swings. The modern Wikipedia definition of “woke” relates it to re-discovery of racial prejudice and discrimination, and an awareness of systemic social inequality regarding gender and sexual orientation. The evils of racism and prejudice are not new, nor are the efforts to promote moral awakenings.
The actual sensation of being morally or physically “woke” is as old as humankind and has little practical value without subsequent action and application. The modern usage of the word “woke” is merely a variation of what Webster’s 1828 defined as “awakened: Roused from sleep, in a natural or moral sense”. It is a very normal human sensation. It is usually irritating when someone experiencing it anew determines others are asleep, and insist they too, should be awakened. It is particularly annoying when entire groups of people self-identify as ‘special’ because of newfound moral insights they claim others don’t have. On the other hand, few things are more hopeful and encouraging than a renaissance of good governing and moral laws — a nation being “woke” or “awakened”. America itself is a creation by people passionately working together to ensure justice and freedom for all. These attributes are the results of “awakening” from the oppression of a monarch and sincere application of something we call truth.
The message itself is good: “Wake Up!”. We do need a wake-up call, but not necessarily to just become aware of subtleties of incomprehensible racism or social injustice opinions! These are merely symptoms of a popular delusion (a dullness) we have fallen into, which resents and denies absolute truth supersedes both popular and personal opinion! Government is meant to create an environment where man can expect justice and freedom. To do so, it must either provide, or subscribe, to good law. The standards referenced in the founding of America was called “natural law” by which was generally meant to be the human consensus on what was right… to most, arguably, “God’s law” sourced in the Old Testament. A modern “woke” perspective has evolved and insists everyone can/must make up his/her own minds about right and wrong, and nobody should impose his/her standards on anyone else. “Truth” supposedly comes from discovering who you are and identifying your “designer standards”, and then being true to them with all integrity. The big “thou shalt not…” has become – never judge others using our “designer standards” to interfere with others. Everybody’s “designer standards” are to be viewed to be as right as anyone else’s. The reason we need to wake up should be obvious! Wake Up! The authority of the “rule of law” simply cannot exist unless there are moral absolutes. Our constitution is based on a humbling truth that there is something dreadfully and universally wrong with our human nature, requiring the imposition of an external Divine standard to ensure social justice! We all have an imperfect sense of right and wrong and a drive to identify and enshrine it. We have a rare opportunity as Americans to renew application of God’s laws to how our Republic is governed (legislatively, judicially, and administratively) to everyone’s personal best interests! This would be the ultimate “woke”!
Politically, this opportunity is provided by the US Constitution openly embracing underlying Biblical values such as the sinful nature of man. “Tolerance” must never be about empowering every perspective at the table, but rather, having a real working relationship with someone who may disagree after a fair, rational analysis together. If you want to really “wake up” politically, reflect on how far the Bible goes in explaining the source and extent of God’s role in human government: “The LORD has established His throne in heaven, and His kingdom rules over all (Psalms 103); and, “There is no one righteous, no not one.” (Romans); and, “…the government will be on His shoulders” (Isaiah). Indeed, the Christian “Gospel” is the good news about the Ultimate Government by providing saving grace for us individually as well as nationally!
This was also submitted as an article to The People’s Paper.