Stepping into the Arena:  Palm Sunday Is All About Courage

By Dr. Michael Obsatz – March 28, 2021

When Jesus decided to ride into Jerusalem on a donkey to program the “good news,” he was taking a risk.  He was putting himself out there.  It was like a prelude to his “coming out,” being who he was, not being afraid of how he was going to be received.

This message suggests some ideas from Brene Brown — the person who is not afraid to get into the arena, not just sit on the sidelines.  Theodore Rosevelt’s comments about the “man in the arena” is the one who is the hero, the one with true courage.

So, Palm Sunday is about courage, and the ability to speak one’s truth to the multitudes, no matter what the consequences.  Jesus was teaching people that they had a choice.  They could move to a higher level of consciousness — Oneness Consciousness  This higher level means leaving behind Empire Consciousness, ideas about differences, domination, and hierarchy.

Moving to Oneness Consciousness from Empire Consciousness is a risk, and not everyone is ready to hear about it, much less do it.  It takes courage to suggest that old ways aren’t working, and there is something better one can be thinking and doing.

Jesus took that risk many times, perhaps culminating in his Palm Sunday’s arrival at Jerusalem.  What will people think?   Riding on a donkey?  Not a big white horse, not a lot of fanfare.  Waving palms, something natural, something green, and not made of gold or silver is also different.

Jesus was making a statement about Empire even as he rode in.  Perhaps he was mocking the powerful and dominating forces around him by doing the “lowly” entrance.  Remember, Jesus was born in stable, a “lowly” place. Jesus spent much of his time with “low-life” and marginalized people.

The better way, the way of love and peace, the way of acceptance of all, the way seeing the world through the eyes of compassion, grace, and forgiveness is still challenging for many people.

Blame, shame, control, hierarchy and domination — all signs of “power over” are still very much in our faces these days.  Remember the story of the “Emperor’s New Clothes.”  It was the small child who said, “The Emperor isn’t wearing any clothes.”  He was courageous enough to tell it like he saw it.  Most everyone else was busy in the stands.  The child stepped into the arena when he said that.

The message of Easter is about Crucifixion and Resurrection — but it is also about the courage to raise one’s consciousness, and proclaim that to the world.

Palm Sunday celebrates this courage, and the beginning of as journey we are all taking.

It takes a village to raise a child, and it takes courage to raise one’s consciousness.

© 2021 Dr. Michael Obsatz, all rights reserved
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