Life in the Box: Defying Denial


If there’s one thing the 12 steps (for addiction relief) teaches: denial is the enemy. Embrace reality—no matter how harsh—and you have taken a step towards wholeness.

Denial in America? It’s epidemic now. Real people, in powerful positions, are denying, denying and denying reality. Along with denial come the creation of new “reality” and Americans are believing the fairy tales coming through their television sets and skewed media sources.

Recently, I saw actual (real) national news interviews with religious leaders who said straight out, “I don’t believe children are being removed from families at the border.” The child-stealing is very, very hard to deny, with not just video and audio and photographic evidence, but also because government leaders are actually holding press conferences and declaring that they are separating families on purpose.

How can anyone deny this? Yet, pastors of conservative churches are unashamedly in denial. If I had a pastor that said this, I would no longer attend that church.

There’s denial, and then there’s DENIAL.

Churches, synagogues, houses of worship—aren’t they supposed to support good conduct on earth as well as giving  people spiritual guidance? When pastors don’t believe their eyes and ears, who wants to believe pastors? That’s what I mostly don’t get—sheep asleep in the pews.

I once attended a church where part of the service involved congregants crawling on their knees up to the front to get a blessing from the “shepherd” pastor. I was shocked and appalled. It’s one thing to follow Jesus; it’s another thing entirely to treat the pastor as God. Pastors are as fallible as everyone else.

One of my teachers said, “Never admire someone so much that you can’t stick your tongue out at them and tell them they’re full of it.”

I have some personal goals. Keep telling people to stop watching the Fox channel and also keep telling people to stop letting their own pastors get away with lies and deceit. The people I talk to may not believe me, but I’m going to keep the faith, and keep speaking out against people who are full of it.

Nancy Heather Brown is a retired, Emmy Award-winning television producer whose career has included interviewing, writing, narrating and editing for a span of four decades. Today, she enjoys learning new things and reflecting upon the creative process and life issues, both inside and outside the box. Her opinions are her own, and are not necessarily those of this web site.