Sundays are Spirituality Day here at Taking it to the Streets
Have you watched little kids try to get their mom’s attention? “Mommy?” followed by “MOMMY!”, followed by a poke and a very loud “MOMMY!!!”
It always seems to me that God is sort of like that. First a gentle nudge – “Diane, look over here”. Then, when I ignore the obvious, “Hey, Diane!”. It’s best not to ignore THAT little turn signal as the further ways of getting my attention have seemed painful.
So I’m paying attention to Nudge Two from yesterday’s conversations with God. I hang out on Saturday mornings with some fellow spiritual seekers. We read from a little meditation book called “Each Day a New Beginning” and then discuss it. Yesterday’s reading was on our interdependence with one another. The lead off sentence says “We are each spinning our individual threads, lending texture, color, pattern, to the ‘big design’ that is serving us all.”
It went on to call out our interdependence, purposefulness and how what we do impacts one another. The ensuing discussion was thoughtful and inspiring. But you know, I USUALLY have thought-filled Saturday mornings, so I thought “that was nice”, got in my car and drove away.
Then I had lunch with my new friend Kathleen. There’s a really old movie that is one of my favorites – “My Dinner with Andre”. I should say the last half hour or so of that movie is a favorite – the first part seems dated and trivial – but the last part is this far-ranging, philosophical conversation between two guys about the nature of God and life – it’s great.
That was my lunch with Kathleen – but without the boring nonsense up front (as in the movie).
She said several profound things. And it was only later, driving along my favorite road late at night, that I put together our conversation with the morning’s reading. I thought that was a particularly subtle way for God to sneak in a lesson, for what it’s worth.
She said she hated labels of any type – that they were misleading (my interpretation of her words) in that we are all energy – the same energy expressed in different ways. I countered that I felt we labelled one another (“woman”, “gay”, “childless”, “Irish-American”, “IT person”, “fill in the blanks…”) to form affinity groups – to see where our strands interconnect.
But of course, we also use labels to DISCONNECT from one another. We all do it, not usually with any malice. We invite people to events based on criteria – “my women friends” or “people with kids my age.” We unknowingly exclude and maybe hurt people. It’s like those bumper stickers you see “You wouldn’t understand – it’s a Jeep thing.” Really?
So on Country Club Road listening to music I was thinking of what a universal language music is. The music itself, surely, but often the lyrics. I was listening to Ferron sing about some of the unresolved longings that linger on when a romantic relationship ends. And it all sort of came together. That we ARE all one, that our different colored threads, our kinky threads, our frayed edges, our shiny, sparkly threads are all needed to make this beautiful tapestry. When we’re worn and frayed, and when we’re all asparkle, we can tend to think we’re unique. No one has felt this way. Or only the cognoscenti. Really?
So as I go about my today I’m going to see what it’s like to let my humanoid big left brain take a rest from it’s genetic-blueprint job of classifying and sorting. Maybe I’ll give it some simple math problems with which to keep occupied. I’ll make a conscious effort to see the “all-oneness” not my “al-oneness” as I go about my day. To not judge myself as less than the sparkly thread or more than the frayed thread, knowing “I am that one.”
And I have to say, after some of the lessons God/Life has been dishing up this past winter, yesterday’s lesson was as welcome as today’s 80+ degrees in Chicago after a winter of Big Snows. And yes, I get it – ACCEPT the snow-and-cold-and-too-many-deaths lessons with as much grace as the delightful-lunch-with-a-new-friend-and-Country-Club-Road lessons. But we’re human. And some classes in LifeSchool are way more fun than others.
Off to today’s lessons. Please report in on what YOU are studying in LifeSchool, okay?