The poet Rumi once wrote, “I, you, he, she, we, in the garden of mystic lovers these are not true distinctions.” He was saying we are all one. We may appear to be separate but the reality is we are connected, separation is an illusion. We are here to love one another, to care for one another and to comfort one another. That is what Jesus was saying when he declared that the second great commandment is, “To love thy neighbor as thyself.”
Last week I sat transfixed before my television as I watched the trouble unfold in Baltimore. Rocks and bottles flying through the air, police in riot gear facing down the protesters. It was a very sad sight. Then a minister was interviewed who had just seen a building burned to the ground that his church was building. It was to be a home for the elderly; clearly this was a very difficult evening for him. Yet, when a reporter asked him, “What happened here?” His response was, “Someone made a mistake, they didn’t understand what we are trying to do here.” In one of his darkest hours he came from a space of love, no name calling, no vitriol only love.
It seems to me if we are to move beyond the issues that plague our nation today more of us have to step forward with the belief that we are all in this together. We need to move beyond labels and epithets and engage one another on a heart level. Einstein said we can’t solve problems on the level they were created, it’s time to move to a higher level. When we realize that there is only one of us, not us and them we can begin to move toward a place where all lives matter, where we are all treated with dignity and respect and where listen to one another with compassion and caring.
Mother Teresa wrote, “What we are accomplishing is a drop in the ocean. But if this drop were not in the ocean it would be missed.” It is time for acts of kindness, no matter how small. Any act of kindness left undone is missed. The world is a little poorer, and so is the one who let the opportunity pass. This is our time to shape the direction our country will follow for decades to come. The choice is business as usual or shall we forge a new path that includes everyone, so scenes that played on our television screens last week are history not current events.