Returned to Ourself

Reflections on the journey towards wholeness; On the peace that finds us when, relieved from trying to become somehow "better", we live true to ourselves; And on the freedom found when our "belovedness" moves from a pious concept to the living breathing person we can be in the world.

Courage

Living Confidently

When I think of confident people, they are invariably cool, unflappable, even insouciant, but they carry themselves with an authority that those of us around them find compelling. Picture Martin Luther King Jr. as he led a walk with five thousand demonstrators; or fourteen year old Greta Thurnberg, addressing a conference of UN aristocrats, many of whom older than her grandparents, saying "How dare you!" to their pathetic response to climate change. Ms. Thurnberg and Dr. King leave no doubt about what it is that matters to them. What had been instilled within both became the defining nature of their engagement with the world. Each of us can live authentically too, when there is no distance between what resides within and our persona in the world. Besides being the author of the one and only life we have, we get to live out what matters most to us.

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Introduction

Returned And Restored

To be "returned to ourself" is simply to be brought back into the truth of who each of us is. All the philosophies, theologies, or ideologies, for all their value, cannot compare with the richness and life that already exists within us. Notice the "returning" is done to us, not by us. This is important, for it is through our relationship with others and with God that we are brought back. Brought back, kind of to where we started, but to a self that emerges as infinitely "more" by way of the exchange with that "other."

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Reconciliation

Do Something

Author Robin DiAngelo in her best selling book, White Fragility, describes white people’s complicity in the societal structures of racism as an inescapable consequence of our being silent. This silence provides us the cover to deny we have any responsibility to make right an unjust system that in its undeniable effects favors ‘us’ and punishes ‘them.’ Ms. DiAngelo explains this denial does not necessarily make a person ‘bad,’ that that is actually irrelevant, but, that denial sanctions those racist structures. To deny this reality is to sustain it, and that is not what we want to do.

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Mutuality

Pay Attention

Remember when a teacher, or maybe a coach yelled at you, "pay attention!", leaving you feeling a little bit chastened. And no doubt many of us have used the phrase with every intention of chastising someone we felt deserved it. But the title of this post is about an asset each of us possesses that we can indeed pay, perhaps a better way to put it to 'pay forward.'

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