Greetings! It’s been several weeks since my last Weekly Musings update. My apologies. I was intending to get one up a little sooner but had to focus my energies on other projects. But I’m at the point where a few of these musings have been marinating for awhile and they needed to be shared. Some of them were inspired by a few episodes of Super Soul Sunday on OWN.
- If your eyes are open, if your heart is open and warm—love is never too hard to find. Even if your heart is cold, just a little love might be all you need to renew your faith. Love is everywhere. As Adriana Evans sang, “Love is all around.”
- When I think back to hearing the word “harmony,” the context (outside of music) usually involved unity amongst people or accord within the environment. It was rare that harmony was ever mentioned when referring to the individual. The focus was/is too often on being in harmony with everything outside of ourselves. While this is important, harmony within—a sense of tranquility, calm, and peace—is just as much if not more so important. As Panache Desai said, “There is no greater power than to be in harmony within oneself.” Cherish the harmony within as you would cherish your joy. Stay in tune with it!
- I thought we lived in a free state. Isn’t this the land where people come to live their lives the best way they see fit? You know, the place where you can be anything and do anything? The place where you are free to practice whatever religion you like without persecution? A place where people of different political persuasions, race, gender, and sexual orientation can come together and live freely? Each time I turn on the news, read the paper, or go online I feel the notion of this nation being a “free state” is the biggest farce known to man. So much hate. So much intolerance. Forget acceptance. Forget civility. Forget unity. Even tolerance is but a dream. The ultimate pot stirrer is the abominable bond between religion and politics. It’s a marriage in need of a long overdue divorce. Maybe when religion and politics distance themselves the “free state” will return…
- Guarantees—are there any? The one that always rings true is that there aren’t any guarantees in this life. With every fleeting moment, hopefully we’re living our lives to the fullest extent. Hopefully we’re honoring our spirits. Hopefully we’re doing all that we can to make our souls smile, run, and jump with glee. We owe it to ourselves to live our best lives. If a moment comes when we find we aren’t being true to the essence of our being, then it’s time to turn the volume up. This life is the only life we have. So let’s LIVE IT OUT LOUD!
- The only validation a relationship needs is the validation of the two people who are in it. When you truly love each other, it matters not what others say or think. It’s what the unit thinks and feels. While others may not agree with it or condone it, they must respect it.
- Equality is when all members of society can enjoy the same rights and privileges without exceptions, exclusions, or conditions. As Jill Scott said, “Equality does not equal equal if it’s not divided equally.”
Until next time… Peace, love, and many blessings!
While watching one of two The Best of The Oprah Winfrey Show episodes on OWN today, I was astounded by how small-minded we can be. This episode featured best-selling authors Betty Eadie and Sophy Burnham. The topic was spiritual beliefs, specifically how to get closer to God and what questions we would ask if God were physically here with us in this moment. When the discussion shifted to our path to God, some of the audience members adamantly believed that the only path to God was through Jesus. They could not fathom the notion that we all have different paths. And though different, these paths still lead us to the same place—to God. One part of me says, “Of course. How could you not believe this, especially if this is the only path you were exposed to?” But the other part of me says, “How small of you to think your way is the only way. There are multiple ways, multiple paths to get to the ultimate destination.”
When it comes to our beliefs, there’s a comfort in what’s familiar. There’s also a sense of complacency because we do not question anything. We don’t challenge ourselves. And we easily welcome those in who believe and feel the same way we do. When someone or something challenges what we believe, we get defensive and, often, are not as receptive or open to other possibilities (as was the case with a certain audience member on this best-of episode who tried to read—and I do mean READ—Oprah the riot act, but Oprah wasn’t having it).
In our lives, we all follow different paths to get to the ultimate destination (to God). Our life experiences are what can bring us closer to or take us away from God. While our paths may be different, we still get to the same destination. For me, the obvious example of this is the beltway. The beltway is composed of several different intercounty and interstate highways that connect at various junctions. These junctions help get us to our respective destinations. Often times, many of us are going to the same destination but we take a different route. Though the route taken and the time of arrival may be different, we all still reach the same destination. And as most who’ve traveled on the beltway will probably testify, it helps to know alternate routes to get to your destinations. We get into problems when we’re only open to taking one path. And if we can’t get beyond this one path, we don’t have to wonder why change and different results continue to elude us.
Spirituality tells us that we each have our own unique relationship with God. Let no man tell you different. The responsibility to maintain and nurture this relationship falls on us. Religion, on the other hand, is a tool that we can use to help manage our relationship with God. What we call God or what religion we follow is insignificant, since so many of our principles, values, and beliefs are universal. It’s about being connected to a spirit, a being greater than ourselves—and letting that spirit guide and direct us. But it’s our choice whether we want to accept it. We don’t have to. And that doesn’t make us any better or worse than the other. Just be flexible, open, and accepting of the fact that there are several paths available for us in this life. And remember, while our path or walk may be different—the ultimate destination is universal and always the same.