In his book Beyond Religion – Ethics for a Whole World, His Holiness the Dalai Lama suggests we develop “inner values which are the source of both an ethically harmonious world and the individual peace of mind, confidence, and happiness we all seek.”
When we are infants, everything we see, feel, taste, and touch is me. As we grow, we recognize others: mother, father, siblings. As our understanding grows, we recognize our community, and the “world out there”. If we are fortunate, we come to discover that we are connected to – and are one with – all others. If we are both fortunate and also wise, we realize situations where we cannot be at peace. For example, when we are warm and others are cold; when our bellies are full, and others’ are empty; when we feel needed, loved, and fulfilled, and others do not; then we cannot be complete. I grow in my compassion…the desire for others to be warm, with full bellies, to feel loved, needed, and fulfilled. May they have peace of mind, confidence and happiness. This is when I grow to seek the common good, this is when I am mature and ethically complete. This gives my life true meaning.
The founder of Science of Mind, Ernest Holmes suggests that we “Silently I pass from less to more, isolation into inclusion, separation into oneness.”
Because I am one with all of Creation, I am disturbed when any expression of Creation has been harmed or is endangered. I shift from isolation to inclusion and long for the peace and safety for all beings and elements of the Universe – whether it is another living creature, earth, fire, water, or air. I die to my self-centered nature and am reborn with compassion for the entire Universe – realizing that God is All there is, and I am one with all there is. I embrace my oneness with all and I turn my focus to that which is beautiful, enduring and true.
Civil rights leader Martin Luther King, Jr. reminds us “We are all cut from the same cloth. We are tied together in the single garment of destiny, caught in an inescapable network of mutuality. And whatever affects one directly, affects all indirectly.”
The immeasurable joy and benefits of embracing our Oneness with the Creator, with one another, and with all creatures great and small, is something of great moment and virtue. Once we embrace the Truth, our individual lives can never be the same because we have learned to appreciate the inextricable connection between our own well-being and that of others. An ethically harmonious world with individual peace of mind, confidence, and happiness for all becomes our own aspiration.