Unity in Diversity
By Rev. Chris Beard
Merry Meet New Friends,
I've only recently joined the family of the Universal Life Church. Yet I have long held the belief that people of all spiritual paths, though diverse in personal convictions; could live and work together for the betterment of all life on this our sacred Earth.
As we look around our world today it has become plagued with ideologies of hate, violence, and war; all played out to the soundtrack of religious extremist rhetoric. Unspeakable acts of violence have been committed against all of humanity, with the perpetrators calming all was done in the name of their deity! Even the President of our great nation justified his actions in Iraq in a recent press conference by holding a Bible high over his head and saying: 'this is my rule book'. We are a world of diversity; diverse in ethnicity, culture, lifestyles, ideology, spirituality, and in almost any manner one could think of. Many fear these differences, seeing them as a direct assault on their personal beliefs. That fear gone unchecked can lead to mistrust and hate, and ultimately to violence. It is time to break that cycle by uniting in respect and in celebration of our diversity. It is our diversity that brings beauty and life to a world that would otherwise be stagnant and void of inspiration. It is time we unite, with open minds and hearts; in respect and love, and in the common belief of the sanctity of life. We do not have to agree on all matters of life and spirituality to love and respect one another. Yet we msut be willing to listen to one another, and be willing to reach across what barriers may exist. Simply because we differ in spiritual paths does not mean that one must be right while the other one is wrong. Personal truths are sacred and where as my personal truth may not be right for you it does not make my path any less true or valid. It is simply my path and is sacred to me as your path is to you.
So let us not break our unity upon the shoals of our diversity. Let us not be afraid to embrace one another as friends or family simply because of differences in personal truths. Let us instead celebrate our diversity and uplift one another. Let us unite and use our collective good will and love to bring the light of compassion into an overcast and shadowy time in the history of our world. Diverse our paths may be, but united in love shall we live. So mote it be.
Blessed Be One and All,
Rev. Chris Beard