Today I celebrate healthy religions and their leaders. I celebrate The Cenacle sisters and The Spiritual Direction Institute. I celebrate Pope Francis. I celebrate Philip Chircop and his example of using Imaginative Prayer, "wrestling with the text" until he can find the loving, wise, and useful meaning in each one. He translates lines like "the sleek and strong I will destroy" into a verse about the voices in our heads. Teaching us that our thoughts need shepherding. I celebrate St. Paul's Methodist and the teachings of Rev. Dr. Bill Kerley and the opportunity to explore practices with life applications with Rev. Dr. Matt Russell. I celebrate Christ Church Cathedral and the excitement and expertise that has surrounded The Hines Center project for years. I celebrate Interfaith Ministries and all of the women I met at the Women's Peace Conference in the fall. I celebrate each of our faiths that were represented and shared in that safe and respectful place.
I celebrate all of these people, places, and religions. I am most grateful that each of these are religious institutions that encourage us to bring our brains to church and take our hearts when we leave. Polarization is an easier path. It can numb the mind and harden the heart. Non- duality, non-judgement, nonviolence, forgiveness, love, understanding, acceptance, and unity are paths paved with wrestling with paradox until we can find a unifying thread. I can only speak for myself, but this is not something I can do on my own in isolation and inside my head.
"It is too late for labels. It is too late to know each other by what we do. We are beyond that." - Tillet Wright Our identities and our unity are like science and spirituality as Ilia Delio says of the cosmos, so are we, creative, expansive, entangled, and evolving.