Warning: Creating default object from empty value in /home/avfaith/public_html/wp-content/themes/platform/includes/class.layout.php on line 164

Warning: Creating default object from empty value in /home/avfaith/public_html/wp-content/themes/platform/includes/class.layout.php on line 167

Warning: Creating default object from empty value in /home/avfaith/public_html/wp-content/themes/platform/includes/class.layout.php on line 170

Warning: Creating default object from empty value in /home/avfaith/public_html/wp-content/themes/platform/includes/class.layout.php on line 173

Warning: Creating default object from empty value in /home/avfaith/public_html/wp-content/themes/platform/includes/class.layout.php on line 176

Warning: Creating default object from empty value in /home/avfaith/public_html/wp-content/themes/platform/includes/class.layout.php on line 178

Warning: Creating default object from empty value in /home/avfaith/public_html/wp-content/themes/platform/includes/class.layout.php on line 180

Warning: Creating default object from empty value in /home/avfaith/public_html/wp-content/themes/platform/includes/class.layout.php on line 202

Warning: Creating default object from empty value in /home/avfaith/public_html/wp-content/themes/platform/includes/class.layout.php on line 206

Warning: Creating default object from empty value in /home/avfaith/public_html/wp-content/themes/platform/includes/class.layout.php on line 224

Warning: Creating default object from empty value in /home/avfaith/public_html/wp-content/themes/platform/includes/class.layout.php on line 225

Warning: Creating default object from empty value in /home/avfaith/public_html/wp-content/themes/platform/includes/class.layout.php on line 227

Warning: Creating default object from empty value in /home/avfaith/public_html/wp-content/themes/platform/includes/class.layout.php on line 321

Warning: Creating default object from empty value in /home/avfaith/public_html/wp-content/themes/platform/includes/class.layout.php on line 321

Warning: Creating default object from empty value in /home/avfaith/public_html/wp-content/themes/platform/includes/class.layout.php on line 321

Warning: Creating default object from empty value in /home/avfaith/public_html/wp-content/themes/platform/includes/class.layout.php on line 321

Warning: Creating default object from empty value in /home/avfaith/public_html/wp-content/themes/platform/admin/class.options.metapanel.php on line 56

Warning: Creating default object from empty value in /home/avfaith/public_html/wp-content/themes/platform/admin/class.options.metapanel.php on line 56

Warning: Creating default object from empty value in /home/avfaith/public_html/wp-content/themes/platform/admin/class.options.metapanel.php on line 56

Warning: Creating default object from empty value in /home/avfaith/public_html/wp-content/themes/platform/admin/class.options.metapanel.php on line 49

Warning: Cannot modify header information - headers already sent by (output started at /home/avfaith/public_html/wp-content/themes/platform/includes/class.layout.php:164) in /home/avfaith/public_html/wp-includes/feed-rss2.php on line 8
Antelope Valley Interfaith Council http://avinterfaith.com United in support, study, dialogue and action Wed, 13 Nov 2013 09:09:58 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=3.7.3 2013 Annual Thanksgiving Community Service http://avinterfaith.com/2013/11/13/2013-annual-thanksgiving-community-service/ http://avinterfaith.com/2013/11/13/2013-annual-thanksgiving-community-service/#comments Wed, 13 Nov 2013 09:09:58 +0000 http://avinterfaith.com/?p=413 Antelope Valley Interfaith Council Invites You To Our:

Twenty- fourth Annual Community Thanksgiving Service

“What Does Gratitude Do For You?”

A Joyful Celebration of Gratitude through Music and the Performing Arts followed by
a Thanksgiving Traditional Community Meal

7 PM Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Lancaster United Methodist Church
918 West Avenue J, Lancaster

[...]]]>
Antelope Valley Interfaith Council Invites You To Our:

Twenty- fourth Annual Community Thanksgiving Service

“What Does Gratitude Do For You?”

A Joyful Celebration of Gratitude through Music and the Performing Arts followed by
a Thanksgiving Traditional Community Meal

7 PM Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Lancaster United Methodist Church
918 West Avenue J, Lancaster

Our Love Offering will benefit the AVCOA Meals on Wheels Program for Seniors

Bring your favorite traditional Thanksgiving dish to share (No Pork Items, Please).

Share

]]>
http://avinterfaith.com/2013/11/13/2013-annual-thanksgiving-community-service/feed/ 0
Wonderful National Day of Prayer Service! http://avinterfaith.com/2013/05/03/wonderful-national-day-of-prayer-service/ http://avinterfaith.com/2013/05/03/wonderful-national-day-of-prayer-service/#comments Fri, 03 May 2013 14:55:48 +0000 http://avinterfaith.com/?p=385

The photo above is from today’s (May 3, 2013) Antelope Valley Press article about our National Day of Prayer Service last night at the Center for Spiritual Living.

Imam Omeira was a wonderful keynote speaker and Rev. Ron Sparks a terrific master of ceremonies.

Heartfelt prayers were given by Sanah Burhan (Muslim), [...]]]>

The photo above is from today’s (May 3, 2013) Antelope Valley Press article about our National Day of Prayer Service last night at the Center for Spiritual Living.

Imam Omeira was a wonderful keynote speaker and Rev. Ron Sparks a terrific master of ceremonies.

Heartfelt prayers were given by Sanah Burhan (Muslim), Sarge Chavez (Buddhist), Lisa Cowley Morgenstern (Asatru), and Bishop Rich Heredia (Orthodox Catholic).

Joe Noone sang a rousing rendition of “I’m Proud to Be An American,” which received a standing ovation.

After the service, we had refreshments and fellowship.

Thanks all for coming and hope to see you again at our Thanksgiving Service in November!

Share

]]> http://avinterfaith.com/2013/05/03/wonderful-national-day-of-prayer-service/feed/ 0
A Quote by Roger Ebert (1942-2013) http://avinterfaith.com/2013/04/30/a-quote-by-roger-ebert-1942-2013/ http://avinterfaith.com/2013/04/30/a-quote-by-roger-ebert-1942-2013/#comments Wed, 01 May 2013 03:35:47 +0000 http://avinterfaith.com/?p=374 “I believe that if, at the end, according to our abilities, we have done something to make others a little happier, and something to make ourselves a little happier, that is about the best we can do. To make other less happy is a crime. To make ourselves unhappy is where all crime starts. We [...]]]> “I believe that if, at the end, according to our abilities, we have done something to make others a little happier, and something to make ourselves a little happier, that is about the best we can do. To make other less happy is a crime. To make ourselves unhappy is where all crime starts. We must try to contribute joy to the world. That is true no matter what our problems, our health, our circumstances. We must try. I didn’t always know this and am happy I loved long enough to find it out.”

Share

]]>
http://avinterfaith.com/2013/04/30/a-quote-by-roger-ebert-1942-2013/feed/ 0
Interfaith and Discerning Truth http://avinterfaith.com/2013/04/30/interfaith-and-discerning-truth/ http://avinterfaith.com/2013/04/30/interfaith-and-discerning-truth/#comments Wed, 01 May 2013 03:29:28 +0000 http://avinterfaith.com/?p=371 Michele Chavez, Nichiren Shu Buddhism

I love interfaith because when I listen to others speak about their faith traditions, there is always something beautiful that I find within each of them. I know that many people like to believe that they have the one and only way, the Truth, and that nothing else is worth [...]]]> Michele Chavez, Nichiren Shu Buddhism

I love interfaith because when I listen to others speak about their faith traditions, there is always something beautiful that I find within each of them. I know that many people like to believe that they have the one and only way, the Truth, and that nothing else is worth listening to or learning from.

How do we decide what religious teachings have value and which do not?

Back in the time of the Buddha, there were many ascetics and roving preachers who declared they had the Truth. In the area of Kesaputta, the native Kalamas found this plethora of different philosophies and doctrines to be quite confusing. Having heard something about the Buddha, when he arrived in Kesaputta, the Kalamas decided to ask him how they could tell what was true and who to follow:

“There are, Lord, some ascetics and brahmins who come to Kesaputta. They explain and elucidate their own doctrines, but disparage, debunk, revile and vilify the doctrines of others. But then some other ascetics and brahmins come to Kesaputta, and they too explain and elucidate their own doctrines, but disparage, debunk, revile and vilify the doctrines of others. For us, Lord, there is perplexity and doubt as to which of these good ascetics speak truth and which speak falsehood?”

“It is fitting for you to be perplexed, O Kalamas, it is fitting for you to be in doubt. Doubt has arisen in you about a perplexing matter. Come, Kalamas. Do not go by oral tradition, by lineage of teaching, by hearsay, by a collection of scriptures, by logical reasoning, by inferential reasoning, by a reflection on reasons, by the acceptance of a view after pondering it, by the seeming competence of a speaker, or because you think: ‘The ascetic is our teacher.’ But when you know for yourselves, ‘These things are unwholesome, these things are blamable; these things are censured by the wise; these things if undertaken and practiced lead to harm and suffering’, then you should abandon them.”

“What do you think, Kalamas? When greed, hatred and delusion rise in a person, is it for his welfare or harm?” – “For his harm, Lord.” – “Kalamas, a person who is greedy, hating and deluded, overpowered by greed, hatred, and delusion, his thoughts controlled by them, will destroy life, take what is not given, engage in sexual misconduct and tell lies; he will also prompt others to do likewise. Will that conduce to his harm and suffering for a long time?” – “Yes, Lord.”

What do you think, Kalamas? Are these things wholesome or unwholesome?” – “Unwholesome, Lord” – “Blamable or blameless?” – “Blamable, Lord.” – “Censured or praised by the wise?” – “Censured, Lord.” – “Undertaken and practiced, do they lead to harm and suffering or not, or how is it in this case?” – “Undertaken and practiced, these things lead to harm and suffering. So it appears to us in this case.”

“What do you think, Kalamas? When non-greed, non-hatred and non-delusion arise in a person, is it for his welfare or harm?” – “For his welfare, Lord.” – “Kalamas, a person who is without greed, without hatred, without delusion, not overpowered by greed, hatred and delusion, his thoughts not controlled by them, will abstain from the destruction of life, from taking what is not given, from sexual misconduct and from false speech; he will also prompt others to do likewise. Will that conduce to his welfare and happiness for a long time?” – “Yes, Lord.”

“What do you think, Kalamas? Are these things wholesome or unwholesome?” – “Wholesome, Lord.” – “Blamable or blameless?” – “Blameless, Lord.” – “Censured or praised by the wise?” – “Praised, Lord.” – “Undertaken and practiced, do they lead to welfare and happiness or not, or how is it in this case?” – “Undertaken and practiced, these things lead to welfare and happiness. So it appears to us in this case.”

“It was for this reason, Kalamas, that we said: Do not go by oral tradition, by lineage of teaching, by hearsay, by a collection of scriptures, by logical reasoning, by inferential reasoning, by a reflection on reasons, by the acceptance of a view after pondering it, by the seeming competence of a speaker, or because you think: ‘The ascetic is our teacher.’ But when you know for yourselves, ‘These things are wholesome, these things are blameless; hese things are praised by the wise; these things, if undertaken and practiced lead to welfare and happiness’, then you should engage in them.” (Numerical Discourses of the Buddha, p. 65-66)

Instead of relying upon the credentials of the teacher, long lineages, supposedly logical reasoning, holy books, or the like, the Buddha recommended knowing for oneself based on direct observation and common sense using the criteria of wholesomeness, welfare, and happiness.

When I attend interfaith services, I find elements of all of the above expressed by the members who share their faith traditions. Rather than sway me from my own inner sense of what is true and wholesome, I have been struck by the beauty and truth in other faiths, which has strengthened my own faith.

How we discern truth without experience and knowledge of the myriad faiths and philosophies that abound within our valley? We cannot. We must learn from one another to discern what is wholesome, what is blameless, and what leads to welfare and happiness.

Share

]]> http://avinterfaith.com/2013/04/30/interfaith-and-discerning-truth/feed/ 0
Understanding the Many Faces of Faith http://avinterfaith.com/2013/04/30/understanding-the-many-faces-of-faith/ http://avinterfaith.com/2013/04/30/understanding-the-many-faces-of-faith/#comments Wed, 01 May 2013 03:23:04 +0000 http://avinterfaith.com/?p=369 Deborah Shelton, AVIC President

“Shine from Within,” see your true self and needs and begin to live a life of joy and happiness! You will find these words in the publication which is an introduction to the Konko Faith. Sunday, July 29th I and many others were invited to attend a Tenchi Kane no Kami [...]]]> Deborah Shelton, AVIC President

“Shine from Within,” see your true self and needs and begin to live a life of joy and happiness! You will find these words in the publication which is an introduction to the Konko Faith. Sunday, July 29th I and many others were invited to attend a Tenchi Kane no Kami Grand Ceremony and Opening Ceremony of the Konko Church of Lancaster. The event was held at the Hellenic Center in Lancaster. The ceremony was full of prayers of mediation, purification, and adoration to Kami. Offerings were made, a key note speaker Rev. Rod Hashimoto delivered a congratulatory message, a sermon was given on, “What is Konko Kyo,” by Rev. Kyoji Muta, a Hymn, “Shinjin No Eiko,” by the Konko High School Band was done, a closing prayer, solemn greeting, and recessional ended the service. Then a group picture was taken including one of everyone present. The local church is located on West Ave. K-7 in Lancaster with Revs. Yoshiko and Toskhio Ota as the leaders.

Yes, the Antelope Valley is a very diverse place as is the universe and it is always exciting to meet someone new and learn about who they are. Learning about others and how they believe is not a threat to what I believe, but an opportunity to expand my horizons and make a new connection, a friend. What is the Konko Faith? Who is Kami? The various names associated with this religion are “Konko” named after the founder Konko Daijin, in reference to spirituality then there is “Konkokoyo,” which references the organization. The founder acquired his teachings from Kyoten Gorikai I: Teachings of Konko Daijin I, Konko Japan: Konkokyo Honbu, 1987; Kyoten Gorikai II: Teachings of Konko Daijin III. Konko, Japan: Konkokyo Honobu, 1993; Koyoten Oshirase-Goto Oboe-Cho: Record of Revelations, Konko, Japan: Konkokyo Honbu, 1996; Kyo6ten Kopnko Daijin Oboegaki: Memoirs of Knoko Daijin. Konko, Japan, Knokokyo Honbu, 1987. These teachings are often referenced as GI, GII or GIII, Revelations, and Memoirs followed by the name of the person who wrote it and then the teaching number. Kami is God the Principle Parent of the Universe. I cannot give you a full explanation of the Konko faith here, but I hope to share my experience and arouse your curiosity to find out more on your own.

Kami is the source of all workings of the universe. As a part of the universe we are responsible for taking part to sustain the universe. There exists interdependence with all that exists. Thus we must give back and not just take. Seeking harmony with self and seeking to preserve truth with our surroundings is “Living Kami.” The idea is to understand the ways of the universe in order to move to an attitude of peace and acceptance. Adopting an attitude of gratitude for our blessings.

I see many similarities to Christianity in the Konko faith. Kami is concerned with heart and mind similar to God’s concern for heart and soul. Prayer or Mediation to Kami is similar to prayer to God or Jesus expressing gratitude, offering apologies, making requests, sharing joy, and sorrows. Like Christianity the Konko faith is dealing with the condition of being human. Sharing tools of faith to fight against feelings of greed, anger, disrespect, not feeling equal, being superior, and forcing things to happen for your own purposes. Getting right with God is the way to achieve peace with oneÕs self in Christianity, and it is likewise with the Konko faith those at peace within themselves live a life in pursuit of peace in spite of lifeÕs challenges. Also similar to Christianity being born is a joy and so is death which is a return to Kami.

Church etiquette also includes an altar, a place to focus prayer and mediation. While prayer and mediation can be done anywhere having a specific place to focus is helpful. Altars can be found in he Konko Church and in the homes of members. There is the Kami Altar and Spirit Altar. Providing believers a place to focus their prayers and pay their respects to Kami. Mediation Seat, a small desk, and chair for the minister are on one side and another seat is on the other side for the person. Members may approach the minister to say hello, ask questions, or receive guidance. Now upon the Altars are offerings. The Altars reminded me of little wooden bird houses. Offerings placed there represent fields, mountains, rivers, and the seas. Representing the blessings of the universe, a variety of foods and reminding members of gratitude to Kami for the lives that are sustained through these blessings.

You can begin to see that there is a beautiful blending of spiritual beliefs similar to Christianity and Japanese culture. The day of the Opening Ceremony of the Lancaster Konko Church we enjoyed wonderful hospitality, which included a sharing of their theology through prayer, song, music, and dance. The ceremony was incredibly artful and beautiful. A wonderful meal followed with entertainment, speeches, and award recognitions. Remarkably there were many in attendance from Konko Churches throughout California, but also those who had traveled from Japan to establish, and celebrate another Konko chapter now in the High Desert of the Antelope Valley. I went home with gifts and souvenirs of beauty and blessing! My lovely origami place card and an envelope containing sacred rice and a blessing from Kami. Now I have new friends who are “Living Kami.”

Share

]]> http://avinterfaith.com/2013/04/30/understanding-the-many-faces-of-faith/feed/ 0
Dhammapada, Contrasting Pairs http://avinterfaith.com/2013/04/30/dhammapada-contrasting-pairs/ http://avinterfaith.com/2013/04/30/dhammapada-contrasting-pairs/#comments Wed, 01 May 2013 03:14:55 +0000 http://avinterfaith.com/?p=367 In this world hostilities are never
appeased by hostility.
But by the absence of hostility
are they appeased.
This is an interminable truth.

]]>
In this world hostilities are never
appeased by hostility.
But by the absence of hostility
are they appeased.
This is an interminable truth.

Share

]]>
http://avinterfaith.com/2013/04/30/dhammapada-contrasting-pairs/feed/ 0
Golden Chain http://avinterfaith.com/2013/04/30/golden-chain/ http://avinterfaith.com/2013/04/30/golden-chain/#comments Wed, 01 May 2013 03:09:34 +0000 http://avinterfaith.com/?p=363 Richard Chavez, Nichiren Shu Buddhism

I am a link in Lord Buddha’s golden chain of love
that stretches around the world.
I must keep my link bright and strong.
I will try to be kind and gentle to every
Living thing, and protect all who are weaker
Than myself.
[...]]]> Richard Chavez, Nichiren Shu Buddhism

I am a link in Lord Buddha’s golden chain of love
that stretches around the world.
I must keep my link bright and strong.
I will try to be kind and gentle to every
Living thing, and protect all who are weaker
Than myself.
I will try to think pure and beautiful thoughts,
To say pure and beautiful words, and to do
Pure and beautiful deeds, knowing that on
What I do now depends my happiness and misery.
May every link in Lord Buddha’s golden
Chain of love become bright and strong, and
May we all attain perfect peace.

–Nichiren Shu Service Book, p. 68

Share

]]> http://avinterfaith.com/2013/04/30/golden-chain/feed/ 0
Prayer for America http://avinterfaith.com/2013/04/30/prayer-for-america/ http://avinterfaith.com/2013/04/30/prayer-for-america/#comments Wed, 01 May 2013 02:58:24 +0000 http://avinterfaith.com/?p=353 Joanna DiGiovanna, Baha’i Faith

O Thou kind Lord!
This gathering is turning to Thee.
These hearts are radiant with Thy love.
These minds and spirits are exhilarated
by the message of Thy glad-tidings.
O God! Let this American democracy
become glorious in spiritual degrees
[...]]]> Joanna DiGiovanna, Baha’i Faith

O Thou kind Lord!
This gathering is turning to Thee.
These hearts are radiant with Thy love.
These minds and spirits are exhilarated
by the message of Thy glad-tidings.
O God! Let this American democracy
become glorious in spiritual degrees
even as it has aspired to material degrees,
and render this just government victorious.
Confirm this revered nation to upraise
the standard of the oneness of humanity,
to promulgate the Most Great Peace,
to become thereby most glorious and praise-
worthy among all the nations of the world.
O God! This American nation is worthy of
Thy favors and is deserving of Thy mercy.
Make it precious and near to Thee
through Thy bounty and bestowal.

–Abdu’l-Baha

Share

]]> http://avinterfaith.com/2013/04/30/prayer-for-america/feed/ 0
Getting to the heart and soul of Thanksgiving http://avinterfaith.com/2013/04/30/getting-to-the-heart-and-soul-of-thanksgiving/ http://avinterfaith.com/2013/04/30/getting-to-the-heart-and-soul-of-thanksgiving/#comments Wed, 01 May 2013 02:35:43 +0000 http://avinterfaith.com/?p=347 Farivar Roshanian, Baha’i Faith

At this season we reflect on the spiritual significance of thanksgiving with the following words of Abdu’l-Baha, son of Baha’u’llah, Founder of the Baha’i Faith. Abdu’l-Baha shared these thoughts when he visited the United States in 1912:

“Thankfulness is of various kinds. There is a verbal thanksgiving which is confined to [...]]]> Farivar Roshanian, Baha’i Faith

At this season we reflect on the spiritual significance of thanksgiving with the following words of Abdu’l-Baha, son of Baha’u’llah, Founder of the Baha’i Faith. Abdu’l-Baha shared these thoughts when he visited the United States in 1912:

“Thankfulness is of various kinds. There is a verbal thanksgiving which is confined to a mere utterance of gratitude. This is of no importance because perchance the tongue may give thanks while the heart is unaware of it.

“Many who offer thanks to God are of this type, their spirits and hearts unconscious of thanksgiving. This is mere usage, just as when we meet, receive a gift and say thank you, speaking the words without significance. One may say thank you a thousand times while the heart remains thankless, ungrateful.

“Therefore, mere verbal thanksgiving is without effect. But real thankfulness is a cordial giving of thanks from the heart. When man in response to the favors of God manifests susceptibilities of conscience, the heart is happy, the spirit is exhilarated. These spiritual susceptibilities are ideal thanksgiving.
“There is a cordial thanksgiving, too, which expresses itself in the deeds and actions of man when his heart is filled with gratitude. For example, God has conferred upon man the gift of guidance, and in thankfulness for this great gift certain deeds must emanate from him.

“To express his gratitude for the favors of God man must show forth praiseworthy actions. In response to these bestowals he must render good deeds, be self-sacrificing, loving the servants of God, forfeiting even life for them, showing kindness to all the creatures.

“He must be severed from the world, attracted to the Kingdom of Abha [Kingdom of of Heaven], the face radiant, the tongue eloquent, the ear attentive, striving day and night to attain the good pleasure of God. Whatsoever he wishes to do must be in harmony with the good pleasure of God. He must observe and see what is the will of God and act accordingly. There can be no doubt that such commendable deeds are thankfulness for the favors of God.

“Consider how grateful anyone becomes when healed from sickness, when treated kindly by another or when a service is rendered by another, even though it may be of the least consequence. If we forget such favors, it is an evidence of ingratitude. Then it will be said a loving-kindness has been done, but we are thankless, not appreciating this love and favor.

“Physically and spiritually we are submerged in the sea of God’s favor. He has provided our foods, drink and other requirements; His favors encompass us from all directions. The sustenances provided for man are blessings. Sight, hearing and all his faculties are wonderful gifts. These blessings are innumerable; no matter how many are mentioned, they are still endless.

“Spiritual blessings are likewise endless — spirit, consciousness, thought, memory, perception, ideation and other endowments. By these He has guided us, and we enter His Kingdom. He has opened the doors of all good before our faces. He has vouchsafed eternal glory. He has summoned us to the Kingdom of heaven. He has enriched us by the bestowals of God. Every day he has proclaimed new glad tidings. Every hour fresh bounties descend.

–Excerpt from a talk given by Abdu’l-Baha in 1912
Promulgation of Universal Peace, pg. 236-237

Share

]]> http://avinterfaith.com/2013/04/30/getting-to-the-heart-and-soul-of-thanksgiving/feed/ 0
CIVILITY, As a Demonstration of Gratitude for Life http://avinterfaith.com/2013/04/30/civility-as-a-demonstration-of-gratitude-for-life/ http://avinterfaith.com/2013/04/30/civility-as-a-demonstration-of-gratitude-for-life/#comments Wed, 01 May 2013 02:33:11 +0000 http://avinterfaith.com/?p=341 Rev. Maxine Schiltz, Revealing Truth

When Gabby Giffords and others were shot in Arizona, 1/8/11, President Obama stressed the importance for American people to develop and use CIVILITY.

What is civility?? In the words of former US Defense Secretary Robert Gates it means “treating everybody with dignity and respect.”

Civility also means more than [...]]]> Rev. Maxine Schiltz, Revealing Truth

When Gabby Giffords and others were shot in Arizona, 1/8/11, President Obama stressed the importance for American people to develop and use CIVILITY.

What is civility?? In the words of former US Defense Secretary Robert Gates it means “treating everybody with dignity and respect.”

Civility also means more than polite courtesies. It is derived from the Old French and Latin term for “good citizen.” It is an essential component to survive. There is greatness in treating others with respect, compassion, kindness and generosity, so that we can make a difference in the lives of many. This certainly replicates the Golden Rule, a tenet of all religions.

  • Many in our own relationships have not honored the President’s admonishing. Therefore, our own relationships are a microcosm of the great macrocosm. So it is incumbent upon each individual to look at themselves and confront how they behave in their own relationships, thus being an example of civility for those close to them and in my belief in the universe because there is no time and space, the thoughts go out to all who are willing to receive them.
  • Treat all with respect, compassion, kindness and generosity, no matter how you feel at the moment, so that we can make a difference in the lives of ourselves and many.
  • Nurture your social relationships to generate your greatest happiness. As Barbra Streisand sang–”People who need people”, not co-dependently but interdependently.
  • Set boundaries for yourself with lines not be crossed, conveying them gently and softly.
  • Keep a civil tongue. Urge civil discourse with those who do not agree with you–”I have another map of the world,” “I have a different point of view.” Honor the viewpoint of others–it doesn’t call for agreement or approval; just to allow others to differ from you, provided that they do not hurt others.

Examples of what is uncivil, insensitive, inconsiderate:

  • In a group of strangers, a woman had a small hole in her sweater. A gentleman friend saw it and put his finger in it, not only making it larger, but saying in public, “You have a hole in your sweater.” Inappropriate. The woman in good taste let it go in public. I was taught in my early years, “don’t point out a defect to someone when there is nothing one can do about it at the time.” Good lesson, I was always grateful for it.
  • A Christian man who lived in Israel for a time was asked “then why don’t you become Jewish?” Inappropriate.
  • Anyone making stereotypical jokes or glittering generalities of political, ethnic or religious people. Inappropriate.
  • A friend’s adopted son committed suicide. When he mentioned it to a fellow church-goer she responded, “at least it wasn’t your own son.” Inappropriate.
  • A young babysitter treated her young charge in a very demeaning manner. When she told me what she had said to the child, I told her “it was inappropriate. Before you threaten or promise the child a consequence, think–’Is that similar to what I was told by my parents?’ ” with whom she was not pleased as caregivers.
  • Asking anyone personal questions without the caveat of “You don’t have to answer this if you don’t want to.” The media does so for I don’t know what. Sensitive people don’t.

Perhaps we all need to think about how we would feel if what we do or say to another were one to us. Let’s become humans acting as though they actually are imbued with humanity and humility.

Share

]]> http://avinterfaith.com/2013/04/30/civility-as-a-demonstration-of-gratitude-for-life/feed/ 0