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The Time Being

Dignity, The Boston Tea Party

One room in the Sha Jahan Mosque Sindh, Pakistan

Greetings and salutations earth rider,

What do we carry for the whole of our lives? Our success and failures, our hopes, our fears, and all our desires are lost treasures only we ourselves prize and cling to. We can no more carry them into the beyond than our memories of days gone by. Our deeds are washed away by the passing storms and seasons of history. Our names are lost utterances unless kept alive by those who remember us. The flame of our life is kept alive by the relationships that encircle us; nurturing us as we give our light and warmth to those who would receive and care for it. It is in sharing our lives openly, as we are, that the dignity of life flows through us as it does every stone, every blade of grass, and every inhabitant of our living planet and beyond.

The human-centered world we have worked to create is a remarkable and skillful endeavor. We have carved out mountains, turned gold into microprocessors, and even found our way into the furthest uninhabitable places within and just outside our planet. Human ingenuity, curiosity, and the will to act are incredibly powerful gifts that we all individually and collectively possess. Through the journey, we have incurred an incalculable cost of life, both human and otherwise.

The world we have made has sacrificed integrity for comfort; we have learned to blind ourselves to the violence, poverty, and inequity because to see it clearly and feel it fully would be maddening. The lack of dignity we allow to endure stifles our capacity to enjoy with sincere gratitude what we do have. That lack has become the root of the tree that feeds our global society. Lack fuels avarice and creates an insatiable desire to consume and fall more deeply out of connection to cosmic forces that create, sustain, and ultimately reclaim everything that exists. Lack also reinforces the conditioning of “unworthiness” or “not-enough-ness” that keeps us closed in insecurity, doubt, fear, and loneliness. The way out is through; not around, below, above, or away.

It is unlikely that anyone truly desires to live in struggle. The deeper desire to experience joy, ease, and dignity is present in everyone in some form. Joy, spontaneous gratitude for our existence, is not something we create or earn, and is not dependent on how seemingly comfortable our lives are. Joy flows freely when we are established in our connection to the infinite and illimitable intelligence that makes all things possible. Exercising our connection with the force of life within us allows us to perform actions without seeking reward, or building up our sense of self. Recognizing that every person, plant, animal, and inert thing are inseparably connected is the action of compassion. If we were to create a world culture based on compassion, our world would transform.

All that is required to operate a world built on compassion is the commitment to remembering the presence of that silent and incomprehensible power that unites all things: devotion. The ways to live our lives around celebrating gratitude to participate in this play of cosmic forces is as varied as the colors of autumn leaves on one tree; there is no standard method to practice devotion. Accepting, embracing, and nourishing our relationships is probably the most obvious form of devotion. We need not seek out some arduous quest to fulfill the need to live with dignity, commitment, devotion, or compassion. All we really need is to make consistent effort to remain aware of the presence of our relationship with the inner intelligence in all things. We all must make our own journey using the skills that we gain and live our lives with as much dignity as we can for The Time Being (The Boston Tea Party).


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