Thursday, February 4, 2010

(not very) Friendlymama

After yesterday's post I'm wondering exactly what "Friendly" means to me 'cause the post certainly wasn't. Yeah, honest, but geez. I give lipservice to that Quaker thing: "Walk cheerfully over the Earth answering that of God in everyone I meet" or whatever but then I'm all "Jesus with the moneychangers" when it comes to actually interacting with people as if I somehow have the right to judge what's in anyone else's heart. I'll be cheerful with you if you reflect my worldview, if not, shut up and don't trouble me.

What does it mean to be a Friend? I am a member of the Religious Society of Friends; what does that mean? Are we just Friends with one another--like our own little club? If that's the case, then I'm doing alright religiously but spiritually...that's another thing. Foremost, before being Quaker, I am a follower (disciple, student) of Jesus. He did have his own posse but he seems to have been frequently reaching out to folks outside his network, sometimes to share his unique perspective on spiritual life with the larger world, but mostly just helping people; and he encouraged his followers to do the same. I'm not okay with being part of the Religious Society of Friends With People Just Like Us. Originally, the name was "Religious Society of Friends of Truth": What Truth? Who's Truth? Are those questions why we stopped referring to ourselves in that way? What does it mean to answer that of God in everyone?

I think the first thing is for me to be aware of that of God in me. If I'm not aware of that, anything else I do will be based on my own ego rather than what connects me with the Eternal. The further I get from that awareness, the less, um, centered, aligned, harmonious my life feels--like I'm living outside of the Light. When I am able to be aware of Spirit in me, there's a rightness and a sense of flow (words are so inadequate). Even when I have that agitated, liminal disquiet, there's still a feeling that God's got the plan down and, when I can trust and follow that still, soft Voice, I'll get where I'm supposed to be.
When I am aware of that of God in me and am living in accord with that awareness, the differences don't matter quite so much. I have found myself to be a little more tolerant and accepting, a little less often in a hurry to judge and condemn. Which is not to say that I will ever willingly talk politics nor religion with my Uncle Carl. But I may be less dismissive of his necessity to have the worldview that he does.
A sunbeam, a sunbeam,
Jesus wants me for a sunbeam.
A sunbeam, a sunbeam,
I'll be a sunbeam for him.

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