Have you ever met someone who glowed from the inside out? A few months back, I went into the pet store with my son to get dry cat food for our three, not so little felines. A woman in a wheelchair was returning some items and she had a little dog with her. She spoke to my son and I, and just radiated warmth and goodness. I don't remember much of what she said but I remember being awestruck by her kindness. In fact, it was not anything specific that she DID. It was simply her being that was so wonderful and powerful. I am STILL deeply struck by the power of her being. Most of the time we are not able to feel that in each other. But each of us is like that deep down, even if we let it get obscured by being too absorbed in the world. And most of the time we walk around in a trance of separation because we are unable to peel away the layers beneath that presence masquerading as a person that is sitting next to us. How would we act if we really believed that everything was truly one?
Take a moment and breath slowly. How would you be if you believed everything were one; that everything beside you was a part of that which was most beloved by you; that "YOU" were not limited to a body or your thoughts. What if everything was just a projection created by you so that you could see yourself and behold your own beauty in all its many forms. How would you act when that speeding driver cut in front of you? How would you act towards that homeless man out on streets in the cold? What would you do when your co-worker said something cruel about another co-worker? How would you be with your elderly parent ? Would you raise your voice with your child? How would you treat mother earth? What foods would you eat? After all, each of these seemingly different forms would be a part of you. I don't mean to suggest there are pat answers to these questions or even that one answer is correct and another is wrong. In some ways the actual answers don't matter. It is more to get in touch with the connection among all. If you can connect to that place - I wonder what kind of world would arise out of you.
For me, what happens is there is an overwhelming sense of gratitude. I am blown away by the fact that I am even here or that anything else could be either. I deeply feel the miracle of existence and the fact that everything I have ever done, seen, touched, felt, thought, possessed, enjoyed, disliked, or wondered about is dependent on every single other thing. This moment could never be without all the other moments that preceded it. I owe "my" life to each and every person as well as everything there is. What is, is because of the totality of all else. I am because of this desk. I am because of you and outward it goes. I feel unending gratitude for the chair that is holding up my bottom. I feel awe at the mind that created the computer that allows me to type what I am writing. I look out my window and marvel at the thousands of snowflakes - each different than the next and as the zen saying goes, falling into its own proper place. I feel grateful for my aching cold feet and warm cup of Chai tea.
We need each other. Like a heart needs the lungs and lungs need the kidneys and they all need the head, we all need each other. It is easy to feel isolated and disconnected. Many of our modern habits lend themselves toward alienation from each other and trances of separation. But occassionally we come across people who remind us of the goodness that we all are. They can be powerful forces even as they "do" very little. Sometimes all it takes to be that glowing person is a simple smile or being grounded in oneself. The ripple effect can be enormous because if you believe life is one infinite web, then a twang of one thread affects a multitude of others, and ultimately its all one.