I take off my hat to the racists who truly believe that they can do the impossible: separate themselves (consciously, permanently) from the rest of humanity, based solely on skin color. They support their beliefs only by the sad idea of a deity that hates, is violent, vindictive, petty, childlike, void of love, and — ultimately — ineffective (for such a god will not take them to where they say they want to go).
I realize that they will only know the light by living, first, in the dark. It is the same for us all. One cannot know what something is unless one knows what it is not.
I bow my head to the ultraliberals and the religious ultraconservatives (Muslims, Christians and Jews, alike) for the same reasons I’ve listed above. My heart goes out in peace to the brave Wiccans and Earth Believers, as well.
Even my brothers and sisters who devil worship are a part of my spiritual heart, and cannot — shall not — be removed.
My love goes out to those who hold the middle ground. They are our messengers and peacemakers, and shall not be forgotten.
Let us remember our dutiful scientists and their followers, too, for they also hold a spiritual key.
I bow my head to those who are disabled and abused, mentally and physically, and to those whose lives have led them to be incarcerated; tortured in dark, solitary-confinement rooms; or left on death row (years after they’ve become a new person — or maybe they were innocent from the beginning?)
I bow my head to those who are having to deal with the emotional scars left by the violent death of loved ones (perhaps at the hand of one of those in prison), or by fatal illnesses (like AIDS, MS, cancer).
That doesn’t mean that we don’t reach out our hand to help our brothers and sisters in need. Helping others is part of healing ourselves.
This is dedicated to everyone, even those who may read (or hear) these words but will refuse to listen. Sometimes, the worst actions ultimately bring out the best in ourselves.
In regard to all these people (as well as the rest of us), I understand that they must experience bleeding hatred before they can ever experience true love, and must live through their own personal wars before they can know how to hold peace within their hearts. Their souls are just as brave as the rest of ours; they don’t need to be hated, despised or pitied I have a hard time getting past that last one). They need our love, the love that we would give to all our other human brothers and sisters. For many, this truth is a terribly bitter pill to swallow.
I’ve come to realize the need for people to believe as they truly wish, using their own concept of God (Goddess) — given free will to choose. There is no right or wrong way to pursue God (or not to pursue God, for that matter). Following the heart is the core of finding your own belief and understanding. Try asking yourself something: How well do my beliefs serve me? Do my beliefs help create, support or dismantle my fellow human beings? Do I consciously do more harm than nonharm with what (I think) I know? Do I live deliberately or unconsciously? We can answer these queries by using just one more question: What would love do now?
Many years ago, I came to learn that which a book called Conversations with God made very clear: We are all one. Because human beings live within a separatist paradigm (an artificially constructed reality insisting that we, and all life, are somehow separate from one other), that axiom is the most difficult one to understand.
We can never truly separate ourselves from one another, from the Whole. One may embrace any spiritual or religious belief they desire or need, yet still maintain this great understanding: We are all one. If all of humanity would only understand this, now, all our problems would cease tomorrow. In the case of human beings, however, that’s more easily said than done. Still, we can — and will — change that.
Our culture is driven by the axiom survival of the fittest. We don’t seem to realize that the means for our physical survival are always at hand. We’ve never needed books or scriptures to tell us these things; but words — the crudest form of communication — somehow seem to be the only way we can have even a modicum of understanding. And even words — including our Scriptures — get distorted into unrecognizable blurbs that barely echo their original message.
All of us have spiritually chosen the winding road of rediscovery and experience. This includes all the different back roads, intersections, overpasses, stop lights, turnpikes, footpaths, nature trails, railroad tracks, shoulders (often unpaved), tunnels — even off-ramps. All of them lead to that which we call God, the Creator, Great Spirit, Allah, Jehovah, Ultimate Love, etc.
Let’s watch what we call bad and good. We all have different understandings of these two concepts — not just personally, but culturally. Our concepts of morality must stay subjective, if we are to have a smooth transition, with positive change for everyone. Things don’t stay the same, no matter how much we want them to.
To make change, it’s not necessary for us to harm others. Harm is not a necessary ingredient in healing. If we want to have the kind of world our peaceful dreams show us, then we will want to stop living unconsciously, sleepwalking, and start living consciously, doing all things knowingly, deliberately. Be Well, and Go Carefully.
[Glennie Walking Cedar Sewell works as a teacher assistant at Peak Day Reporting Center, Asheville City Schools. He notes that this essay was inspired by his readings of the Conversations with God trilogy, along with Friendship with God, all written by Neal Donald Walsch.]