I do not use this salutation lightly.
I use it with intention.
I use it as a spiritual discipline.
I choose to see others as friends - even when their behavior toward me does not honor who I know myself to be.
In this season of Interfaith-Intercultural Harmony, I have found myself to be in an intensely reflective mode. From the time I was a small child, I did not understand bigotry, scapegoating or cruel behavior. I was exposed to enough of the inhumanity of people to one another, because of my own karmic journey, to have an internal textbook for how people should not treat each other. When I was little, I moved with my family to St. Louis, MO, a city where Jim Crow Laws were still in effect. My mother told me there were still separate drinking fountains and bathrooms. I don't consciously remember it, but we know enough about the unconscious mind to understand that things register even when we are not aware of them. I was, however, born into the perfect circumstances to support my journey which has been all about supporting the one who is hurting, and bringing people together to connect at their deeper levels. Many people in this world are hurting in environments where they are treated poorly.
I have had the great honor of discovering my own spiritual core strength this year. And I do not take the opportunity lightly. It came with great pain, with many sleepless nights yet in the darkest moments, something deep within me would not let me succumb to the despair I felt.
I understand that something as God. I was never without God. There has been an abiding Presence and Power guiding me, breathing me, supporting me, loving me, and loving through me.
I had a soul moment this week in which I realized how hard this last passage has been for me and how grateful I truly am that I was never alone. To quote Psalm 23: "Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for Thou are with me."
I trust that you all will find some moment of inspiration during this next three months which will tune you into your oneness with all other beings.
How we treat one another matters.
I wish you all peace,
We love to see your face,