In the first reading today, Jeremiah the prophet writes, "This is the nation that does not listen."Indeed, he could've been writing that today to us.
We live in a world of constant sound, but seem to of almost lost the ability to listen. Or daily basis, we take in more information today probably than ever before in history. Yet the information we take in is only what we want. We select what we want to listen to, what we want to hear. In the days when people listened to the radio you had to listen to what the disc jockey played, unless you wanted to be constantly changing the channel. Now we can customize not only our music, but our news, and other information. We can so filter our information gathering that we only hear what we already think or believe. We hear only snippets from the other side, taken out of context in order to be derided.
Under the heading of spirituality, we avoid the challenge of real religion. By saying, "I'm spiritual, not religious"we can pick and choose what suits us, discarding anything that is uncomfortable to us. True adherents of any religion must listen. They will hear some things that comfort them, and other things that challenge their most fundamental behaviors.
It's time for us to be religious. Time to listen to the voice of God, we call conscience, to listen to the teaching of the church, to listen to the people around us, most especially those we disagree with.