compassion

 

I used to hate Mormons.  No, seriously, as the past State Coordinator of the National Organization for Women, Mormons were my nemesis.

I debated them, picketed their temple and even made fun of their beliefs.  I was certain that everything I was for they were against, and everything I was against they were for.  I knew that all the men were racist bigots and kept their multiple wives locked up at home barefoot and pregnant.  And I even met some Mormon men who did treat their wives like that.

In 2003,  a few months after my 50th birthday party,  a casual friend was passing hateful propaganda about Muslims on email.  Propaganda that claimed that all Muslims take a vow to kill us.  It went on and on, I’m sure some of you saw it.  I wrote this woman and told her that not all Muslims are hateful killers, that indeed she may have held hands with the Muslim couple that were at my birthday party as we sang “Let There Be Peace On Earth”.   I told her that this couple are beautiful, fun, peace loving people just like we are.  I told her that radical, hateful extremists can be found in almost every religion be they Christian, Muslim, Hindu etc. and every country from France to Russia to Pakistan to the USA.   I reminded her that some Christians in this country bombed abortion clinics – sometimes wounding and killing people.  She wrote back and apologized saying she had never known any of “them” (Muslims) and that she had believed all the awful diatribe about “them”.  Our conversation ended peacefully.

Yet even after that incident, until about a year ago,  I would have claimed that Mormons were my nemesis.  That indeed I knew that “they” were against everything I believed in and vice versa.

And then I met a beautiful and faithful Mormon woman.   A woman who is spiritual, metaphysical, peaceful, who  believes that loving service is the top priority in her life’s mission.  A woman who goes to drum circles with me, who shares Reiki healing, who helped me pack my house for a big move, a woman who loves movies, crystals, chocolate and her family, who regularly attends temple and has a deep belief in God.  A woman who spent hours sending Reiki healing to my dog — who has become one of my best friends.  A woman who shattered every myth I held about Mormons, including that they are all Republicans.

And I had to face my fears – my deep seated beliefs about “them”.  I had to step up and recognize that when I put anyone in the “them” slot, the different than me slot, I contribute to the separation that causes hatred and violence.  When I fail to meet someone and know them as another human being, regardless of their race, creed, religion, gender, sexual orientation, political affiliation or any other differences, I contribute to the imbalance.  I contribute to dishonoring another human. And I dishonor myself in the process.

In the many years that I worked seven days a week for women’s rights, for gay rights, for equality for all, I remember the people who met me and said, “You don’t look like one of them”.  And yet haven’t I said the same?

When I look at anyone different than me in any way and pass judgment based on those assumptions , I give up my chance to know the real person, to relate to another human being at a deeper level…the level where love exists.  For at the core of the majority of humans,  I believe there is infinite light, I believe there is powerful love and forgiveness.  I believe that most of us are good – that we want peace – that we care about each other.  I believe when we take the time to go beyond our judgments, our assumptions and yes our expectations, that we will find another human being who wants the same things we do, who desires love, peace and freedom.

I commit to reach out to “them” the next time.  I commit to take the time to learn who “they” are.

And I commit to remember,  when I point a finger at someone else there are three pointing back at me!

Namaste, BakeR

Please feel free to add your comments below…thanks!

Ladies the Women’s Retreat is filling fast…sign up NOW!  November 16-18 in Sedona More information can be found here Dance in the Light Retreat.

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Angel Valley Garden of Transformation

Whatcha gonna do with the 36 cents sticky with coke on your floorboard?      

When a woman on the street is huddled in the cold on a sidewalk vent trying to keep warm.      

Do you call her over, hand her the change, ask her story, ask her name      

Or do you tell yourself, you’re just a fool, a fool to believe you can change the world…      

             –Carrie Underwood      

 The other night André, my wonderful husband, reminded me that when I heal myself – I heal the world.  Yep, you see I/we believe that God/Spirit/Love, whatever you call the Universal essence is all there is.  Therefore, if Spirit is all there is, then it follows that we are Spirit – right here, right now manifesting in physical form.  When we heal ourselves, that healing spirals out in big waves of love and heals all that it touches.

A fine example of this type of healing is being done October 8th at Angel Valley Retreat Center.

Angel Valley is where James Ray held his now infamous retreat last October which concluded with a sweat lodge.  Yes, that sweat lodge! The sweat lodge that ended in tragedy for the families and friends of the three people who transitioned that night.

Michael and Amayra Hamilton the owners of Angel Valley have chosen to create a beautiful, sacred space, a memorial to honor those who passed a year ago.   Above is a picture of the beautiful heart that was created from the river rocks  used in the sweat lodge ceremony.  Large crystals represent those who passed, surrounded by those who have known and loved them. Trees have been planted to symbolize new life.

Here is part of Angel Valley’s invitation:      

At the same time we want to focus on how we make the next step. We have learned from the experience. We have grown. For many it has been a process of tremendous transformation, of getting a deeper understanding about life and death and a more profound appreciation for the preciousness of life. Therefore the ceremony will be a celebration of life.            

On the occasion, what we have so far called the Memorial Site will be officially renamed The Garden of Transformation      

I honor Michael and Amayra for what they are doing to heal the energy field, the Earth and the families and friends of Kirby Brown, James Shore and Liz Newman.  I’m not here to judge the people involved or guess why it happened or if it could have been prevented.  I am standing with Angel Valley in moving forward to heal their trauma, to heal all those involved and to heal all people.  They are  moving forward with love, grace and forgiveness.  This Friday, the celebration of life ceremony will include meditation, prayers, poetry and music. All the families, friends and community have been invited.

This is one of those healings that has the potential to heal the planet, shifting the grief and anger to love and forgiveness.  Not running away from the pain, but facing it, owning it and then taking the necessary steps to heal.

Where in your life is there something hanging out that you haven’t healed?

Take a moment to go inside – sit in silence or with quiet music. Ask who or what you need to forgive.  You may be surprised what comes up (I was, when a woman from 20 yrs. ago came up – I thought I was done with that chapter).  Whatever feelings come, allow yourself to be with them. You may experience anger, grief, fear, pain, frustration, disbelief, sadness – just allow yourself to feel it. If need be journal about your pain, let it all out. You can be as vicious as needed, purge it, get it out of you, rip it up and burn it.  Now that you’re done with that – forgive them and forgive yourself.

 When faced with this pain you may wonder how you could possibly forgive.  As I told a client yesterday you just do it!  Remember:

When you release the wrongdoer from the wrong, you cut a malignant tumor out of your inner life.

You set a prisoner free, but you discover that the real prisoner was yourself.  

–Lewis B. Smedes

The person who wronged you has most likely moved on, maybe not remembering the incident at all.  While you are still held prisoner.

It is your choice now – right now to heal or not.  What’s it going to be?  You really can decide to release this right now.  You really can decide to heal – yourself and the energy field that we all rely on.  Pigs were born to wallow in garbage not you! You are big enough, couragous enough and strong enough to cut that tumor out now.

p.s. Don’t forget to forgive yourself for carrying it this long!  Feel better don’t you????

Want to feel better on a continual basis?

Call me now to schedule your FREE 30-minute coaching session or call 602.999.2493.

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