GraceNotes: Holding the Space for … Reflection
#79 — November 1, 2018
The welfare of each is bound up in the welfare of all.
— Helen Keller
Greetings, Inspired Seekers!
Happy November – the beginning of the season of celebration for many of the faith traditions of the world and … for all of us. And, that, exactly, is my point! For All of us!
If there is one thing to give thanks for, it just might be the realization that we are all connected, are all one big, messy family – just like the ones that will gather around countless dinner tables to feast and countless televisions to watch the big game on the big day!
So let's put all of this gathering, all of this celebration, all of this oneness into a spiritual context. For if we look at the leaders of the world's faith traditions, we see the core message of oneness in addition to the message of gratitude. And what a great combination as we prepare for Thanksgiving and beyond.
If we examine the lives – not just the beliefs – of great spiritual leaders, mystics and saints, we can see a central theme – the connectivity of all things, the wholeness of all – humanity and divinity. And the signs are clear – how we love ourselves is how we love all others; how we love the Divine is how we love our Self – and vice versa. As the saying goes: As above, so below; As within, so without.
In the book of John, Jesus offers probably the greatest lesson on the connectivity of wholeness when He speaks of his relationship with His Father, with all of humanity, and the interweaving of humanity and divinity. (John 17:20 – 26).
Both the Dalai Lama and Thich Nhat Hanh teach the inter-connectedness of all sentient things as taught by The Buddha. And the Native Americans honor the connectedness of all peoples as well as the natural world.
To be a person of great and living faith is, I believe, to be a person that honors the connection of all creation. To separate some from the Self, to create a segment of “others” is to diminish the work of the Creator and of our place in the universe. When we allow Spirit to transform us, deeply and completely, the separetness dissolves. I believe this is one of the signs of a mature spirituality. We are able to see everything as one.
We either live in communion or we don't. We either recognize the common threads or we don't. We either see all of our human frailties or we don't.
So, as we gather around tables groaning with goodness and toast friends and family in all of our glorious messiness, let's give thanks that the world is really one big table, we all have a seat, and we all share in the repast of life.
Celebrate and give thanks for all it!
Monthly Affirmation: I am one with all of the universe and celebrate our oneness, without division.
The Reverend Dr. Deborah Darlington is an ordained Interfaith Minister who celebrates the commonality of all traditions and honors the beliefs of all. She can be reached for weddings, memorials, etc. at 215 260 1611 or at GraceMatters@TheSpaceForGrace.com.