GraceNotes: Holding the Space for … Reflection
#23 — March 1, 2014
Therefore let us present the same face to everyone and treat all men as equals… In this clarity of a still and open mind truth will be reflected.
— Lao Tsu
Welcome, Inspired Seekers:
Who do you see standing before you? That is a question I asked myself the other day as I made my way into Philadelphia to a meeting.
I purchased my ticket from the agent who was preoccupied with the process and did not seem to notice me … until she looked up. Her face softened, she smiled and bid me a “blessed day.” As I boarded the train, a young conductor looked at my briefcase, glanced at me and inquired as to whether he could carry it for me. Really, I thought? Do I look that old? I gracefully declined and … wait for it … he tipped his hat! I was confused.
All of my other encounters of the day followed the same pattern: look up, smile, offer help and be very gracious. What was going on? When I arrived at my destination and removed my cape, I realized that, unbeknownst to me, my clerical collar was peeking out from beneath my bright purple cape. And that is what everyone was responding to. Hmmm…
So, I wondered, on my way home, what if we treated everyone standing in front of us as if they were wearing some kind of spiritual sign? A collar, a stole, a robe, some beads? How would that change our interactions and how would it affect our thoughts and our behaviors?
See, I think that everyone has their own mark of spirituality and, in our human blindness, we don’t see it. And without the recognition of that spiritual awareness, our divinity becomes less than our humanity. And that, in my opinion, is a shame.
How much more kind, giving and empathetic would we be if we saw the divinity in each other and responded to it in every encounter? Personally, I think it would change the world. And I think the great spiritual leaders throughout the generations realized that same thought. Jesus, Buddha, Black Elk, Lao Tsu, and many others responded to others with kindness and honesty. They knew the truth: All are holy in the eyes of spirit! All are children of the Creator.
So, this month, as we go about our days in anxious anticipation of Spring, let’s honor the spiritual in each other and be mindful of the Presence that is within everyone. After all, even if that collar is only peeking out from beneath a coat or a cape, or hidden behind a sigh or a frown, it’s still there and we all look good in it!
Monthly Affirmation: Namaste. The Divine in me honors the Divine in you!
The Reverend Dr. Deborah Darlington is an ordained Interfaith Minister who serves all people of all belief traditions through spiritual coaching and sacred ceremonies. As you take the next step on your spiritual journey, she would be glad to walk with you. 215 260 1611 or GraceMatters@TheSpaceForGrace.com.