Do you “circle the wagons” around your beliefs? What do I mean by that? Do you have an opinion or belief that you insulate from the rest of the world by not allowing yourself to entertain any other belief?
Lately, I have noticed that so many people seem to surround themselves with only those people who believe like they do. I especially see this in relation to our spiritual and political ideas. Many of us only read books or watch on TV programs or listen to radio shows that only serve to reinforce what we already believe. I even read recently about coffee shops that were havens for only people who held certain political beliefs.
Ernest Holmes wrote, “Behind all is a unity, through all is a diversity; saturating all is a divinity. “ We are all Spiritual beings living our lives in the vast multiplicity of possibilities. We are all One.
So how can we move through life and honor the diversity of expression and beliefs? The first thing we can do is to allow ourselves to be exposed to alternate view points that differ from our cherished beliefs. The second thing we can do is to give the gift of truly listening to other people and understanding what they believe. Listen, don’t react. Choose to understand their viewpoint, not argue them out of it.
Although we can choose whether to modify our beliefs or not after gaining this understanding, the real value is in our stepping back and seeing the beautiful diversity of life in all its expressions. And, as we honor others by understanding them, we are setting in motion a powerful law that will serve to make the world a place that works for all.
NOTE: The above article appeared in the New Dawn Center for Spiritual Living “Messenger” newsletter for September/October 2009 issue.
Check out all of Mark Gilbert’s books—available at Amazon. Click here to visit his Author Page. This includes his recent one Our Spiritual Rights and Responsibilities. In this book, he offers what he suggests are the 5 basic rights we all possess by virtue of our being these spiritual beings on planet Earth — and our 2 responsibilities we all hold in relation to one another! Check it out!