March 16, 2017- Belonging
“Come, come, whoever you are. Wanderer, worshiper, lover of leaving. It doesn’t matter. Ours is not a caravan of despair. Come even if you have broken your vows a thousand times. Come, yet again, come, come!”
attributed to Rumi (1207-1273) Sifi mystic and poet
Long-time readers of these reflections might recall this quote which I have used before. This time I want to talk about the importance of belonging and let the poet’s words encourage us to promote it.
I have come to believe that there is little―maybe nothing―more important to the human spirit than a sense of belonging. It is a sense that tells you in a very inner way that you are fine just the way you are; you are accepted; you are cared for, and you are a part of the tribe. With that feeling in place, everything else becomes at least possible, imaginable, doable. Without it, life can be one frustration and roadblock after another.
Belonging is a basic building block, perhaps the most basic, of a successful human life.
Many people are born into this sense; from birth they know who they are, where they come from and who their people are. For these I believe it is often difficult to comprehend the importance of belonging since they have never been without it; unless, as often happens, somewhere along the way, they realize that they no longer belong because of some group or individual identity or characteristic.
Many realize from their first moments of consciousness that they do not belong. Current and reliable studies are showing that as soon as a person begins to live in an environment of belonging and acceptance, everything gets better for them.
When will we finally learn that we are one race, one human family with many and diverse expressions?
Let’s consider what you and I can do to include someone, to accept someone, to see someone, to acknowledge someone, to affirm someone, to love someone, to invite someone – to help someone know that they belong!
Come, come whoever you are! Ours is not a caravan of despair! Come and join us because you are part of us!