Day Twelve – 25 days of compassion

I don’t talk religion or my beliefs often … or at all in public, honestly. I believe spirituality is a deeply personal thing and no one should have an opinion on another persons beliefs. What you believe is your business. What I believe is mine.

From a young age I have been fascinated by the stars in the night sky. Constellations, nebulae, moons, planets, comets, galaxies all hold equal appeal to me. Growing up in Oklahoma gave me ample opportunity to gaze upon them all. Wide open spaces, clear night skies, the haze and hum of cities scattered far apart all made for optimum viewing conditions, even if the chiggers and mosquitoes caused havoc otherwise.

For me those billions of pinpoints of light above us kept me grounded, made me realize that in the vastness of space, I wasn’t that big or that important. That realization could have made me depressed, I suppose, but it didn’t. Instead it made me see how important other people were.

So, no blog series on compassion would be complete without sharing what I call THE SERMON OF THE UNIVERSE. It goes something like this –

Go outside at night and look up in the sky. For all the stars that you see, know there are millions and maybe billions that you don’t see with the naked eye.  Probably the biggest thing you see is the moon. If you got in a car and drove to the moon it would take you 6 months to reach it. That’s a lot of driving and it’s only the nearest object in the universe that you could reach. All of the other planets and celestial objects are infinitely farther away.

Got that in your head? It’s hard to fathom that much stuff, I know. I’ve tried for decades to grasp hold of that idea.

Now, hold out your hands, palms up, cupped together and imagine that the whole of the universe fits in them. The whole universe. Can you even find earth anymore? In the vastness of space our planet is something smaller than the head of a pin in scale. Tiny. Miniscule. Insignificant.

And as people on the earth, we are but mere specks of dust. Atoms in a cosmic storm. Not visible to the naked eye.

Feeling small? Wondering what this has to do with compassion?

No matter what your religion, beliefs, thoughts, practices, etc … As the mere atoms that we are, the insignificant specks of dust on the head of a pin, … WE are the object of God’s attention and affection. WE are whom he loves.

So who are we to not pass that on to the others around us? Who are we to not share the compassion we’ve been given freely? Who are we to wage war, to hate, to hurt one another, to deny our fellow human beings respect, forgiveness, joy, happiness, love, compassion? Who are we in the vastness of universe that we matter at all?

I can’t tell you what your purpose is on this earth, in relation to your fellow humans. I don’t know what your legacy in life will be. I don’t know how you matter in the universe that we all live in … I don’t even know how I matter … I just know that we do and that we are loved.

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