Updated: Oct 13
Oneness. The principle of oneness is a foundational thread of the mystical teachings of the major religions.
Religious skeptics contend such a goal is an unattainable pipe dream. That skepticism appears justified when we witness events like Israel’s declaration of war on the Palestinian group Hamas. After decades of occupation by Israel in Palestine and a multi-faceted attack this past Saturday by Hamas, hundreds of Israelis and Palestinians have died in a matter of days.
I need help to begin to understand the long history between Palestine, Israel, and the surrounding countries in the Middle East. Experts with PhDs in the subject have written a library worth of books and their work should be consulted to gain an understanding of this history. I am, however, able to discuss the need for us all to gain awareness and understanding because, as Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. said, "Whatever affects one directly, affects all indirectly."
For many, other than when the news magnifies headlines about the atrocities of the war, it barely makes a blip in their awareness. Such inattention is understandable since the people in the United States, and from the countries not directly affected, are focusing on the concerns right in front of them. Perhaps, because I’ve befriended persons from Israel and Palestine and learned about the triumphs and tragedies of both groups, I have empathy for their experiences.
Even if we don’t have a personal connection, we are all one in the Spirit, and interconnected on a soul level that should be enough for all of humanity to stand up and take notice. Whatever happens to any of our human family in some way affects all of us. Our oneness with each other means we are to express universal benevolence and have compassion for everyone.
I remember watching a news program about the war in Iraq and Afghanistan. They were paying tribute to the American soldiers who died in the war. One by one, they showed their pictures and their names. I had compassion for those who passed on. I sensed that several who died could be someone I know or a family member.
But a more profound question arises regarding universal compassion and oneness as a human family: "Do we have the same feeling when we hear about a war taking place nearly 8,000 miles away? Do we say, “We’ve got to stop the violence?” Do we rise up when we hear about or see such horrors in the media?
Such questions are vital if we truly desire to build a structure for peace, universal benevolence, and express oneness on the planet. Living in a consciousness of oneness is recognizing that our Spirit and authentic self knows no boundary. Only the superficial mind knows boundaries.
With this realization, we can understand these words from Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. when he said:
“Whatever affects one directly, affects all indirectly. I can never be what I ought to be until you are what you ought to be, and you can never be what you ought to be until I am what I ought to be. This is the interrelated structure of reality.”
Although it may appear not so, there is only One life. One power. One presence. Oneness. Let us hold and affirm that vision for ourselves and for our world. And against all odds, let us demonstrate and live out that oneness.
Peace and Blessings,