“What if our religion was each other? If forests were our church? If holy water—the rivers, lakes and oceans? If prayer was our words? What if the Temple was the Earth? If our practice was our life? What if meditation was our relationships? If the Teacher was life? If wisdom was self-knowledge? If love was the center of our being."
~ Ganga White
This has always been a favorite quote of mine – and perhaps it is as close as I come to prayer.
I have shard it before, but it seems worth sharing again. I am aware that I often return to these themes: Love, Kindness, Moral Courage, Respect, Responsibility, Resilience, Choices, Wisdom, Empathy, Compassion, and Joy.
Like sunshine and rain, the best things in life need to be revisited often. The pragmatist in me realizes that this little prayer to the universe and suggestion to humanity is unlikely – at best.
But the prophet in me has no problem with imagining a better human world and therefore a better natural world where harmony replaces conflict. A man can dream while he still breathes.
We Homo sapiens have struggled through millennia trying to control each other and the Earth. And we have done both to the same degree that eating a slice of pizza controls hunger. It’s temporary… like everything else. But what if we realized that all we can truly hope to control is our own actions and perspectives? What is the only law and the only religion was encapsulated in the words of Ganga White?
Today I will do as I always do… I will feed the birds and water the plants. I will be kind to those people and other living things I encounter. I will do my best to be brave and hopeful. When I fail, I will try again. And while I do these thing each day, innocent people will be killed in Ukraine, starved in Somalia, and forgotten in America. And While I do these things, the ocean will continue to turn acidic and fill with plastic, the atmosphere will continue to be filled with poison, and the land will continue to be covered in concrete.
All I can do is control my own actions and choices. I can lead by example, as best I can manage. I can use my words and share ideas and stories about living the best life.
I choose Loving- Kindness and Courage. I choose “yes” over “no.” I choose Joy and Gratitude. I hope you do too. Namaste’ Y’all…