February 2, 2024
Today is the second of our daily reflections for Interfaith Harmony Week. (If you missed the first day, you can find it in the blog section of our website, interfaithpeaceproject.org .) The Interfaith Peace Project is pleased to offer you these reflections for each day of Interfaith Harmony Week, February 1-7, 2024.
Thomas P. Bonacci, C.P
Adobe Stock File # 620659752 By Augusto
Interfaith Harmony Week
February 1-7, 2024
by Thomas P. Bonacci, C.P.
A Community is too heavy to carry alone.
Deuteronomy Rabbah 1:10
Over and over again, I hear people longing for a sense of community. Often, they are people who thought they belonged to a community. Some lived in monasteries or intentional houses where the regularity of schedule and predictability of life served as the standard.
Sometimes, people long for community even though they have families and a circle of friends. Something seems to be missing.
What is the nature of community? Why do we so deeply long for it and lose it almost as soon as we commit to it?
Often, legalism and rigidity set in, replacing the natural rhythm of life. Honesty and openness are replaced by words and actions that appear safe and acceptable but actually compromise truth and justice.
The authentic community experience enhances the depth of any individuals who might participate. There is a sense of mutuality and mutual respect for one another.
Sometimes, the success of an individual empowered by the community threatens the community itself. Communities run the risk of becoming self-centered, exclusive, if not self-righteous.
Any authentic community expands and opens up to the greater human community. This openness is a significant force in the Interfaith World. As the Sufis teach, “I am a better me because I met you.” Indeed, we are a better us because we continue to meet one another in the community of humankind.
…Then he clasped his hands together, smiled and said, “This could be a good time! There is a river flowing very fast. It is so great and swift that there are those who will be afraid. They will hold on to the shore. They will feel they are being torn apart and will suffer greatly. Know the river has its destination. The elders say we must let go of the shore, push off into the middle of the river, keep our eyes open, and our heads above the water.
And I say, see who is in there with you and celebrate. At this time in history, we are to take nothing personally, least of all ourselves. For the moment that we do, our spiritual growth and journey come to a halt. …
Hopi Elders’ Prophecy
Today, I will practice being conscious of my human family living in the community of everything that exists.
My family, my circle of friends, and my associates are robust expressions of the dynamism of the community of humankind.
I will reach out my hand to help others as my sense of isolation ceases in the marathon of us.