Throughout my career as a Rabbi, I have often searched for colleagues among clergy who have what I call expanded patterns of faith. What do I mean by expanded patterns of faith? I mean that it is very common that clergy, as representatives of their own religions, to tolerate in public those of other faiths but to carry in their hearts a stern judgment for their being the “wrong” faith. The world of religion is still heavily tribal, and less than humble when it comes to accepting the common plight and diversity of all searching souls.
I have been in search of Clergy who understand that the path that all seekers search for is the very same path as all other seekers. What is different is our cultural markings, our expressions and our manifestations that culminate in the formation of a “religion.” Yet, the search for answers that whispers to the mind and hearts of every human is the same impulse, it is the One God calling. Here’s the key: the path is the same, the call is from the one creator, yet our hearts hear the waves of that divine frequency differently. We are different, God is not.
From an aerial shot there is only one path calling to one humanity, whispering a unified oneness with all that exists. Yet we step upon our paths too often believing that we own the road and that all other paths are illusory.
As the Rabbi and Spiritual leader of Or Atid, a Jewish community here in Prescott, we rent space at Unity Church to hold our Sabbath services. I was overcome with a great sense of peace when I saw the labyrinth gardens on their grounds which are overseen by Robert Wertz, a member of the Unity community. And when Robert approached me to do a project together which centers around a labyrinth, I couldn’t resist. How beautifully symbolic is a labyrinth to tell this story. Here’s the path and look how we all fit on it together.
I was blessed to find two spiritually nourishing gifts so far from this involvement. First, I found myself in the company of Reverend Richard Rogers, the pastor of Unity, Manuel Lucero the Executive Director of the Indigenous Museum here in town and Robert Wertz, the guardian and caretaker of a magnificent labyrinth. These gentlemen and I share a common bond. We celebrate the multitude of spiritual and religious paths as differing perspectives on the same Mystery of God. We each love and respect our own traditions and the cultures that have developed by our unique experiences throughout history. Yet, there is no need to outshine anyone, we are all celebrating the shared path, though our perspectives and manifestations vary greatly. No one needs to be right; no one needs to be wrong, we are all the children of this universe, together as friends, traveling hand in hand with mutual respect, supporting genuine love as brothers and sisters, not enemies, not adversaries.
The second gift is that we are together, developing an event to take place on August 23rd at the Watson pavilion. Robert Wertz has created an expansive labyrinth in the shape of the star of David. It will welcome the feet and journeys of all of us, in peace and in knowing that we are all fellow travelers following the call as our own souls feel it. Alone we are surely faithful, yet together we are the voice of the future. The tribal mentality is melting away and we are preparing to wake up as one unified family of humankind, which is, after all, our true identity. What better symbology than to share the path of a labyrinth as we dream about a world at peace, a humanity without hatred, division and brutality. Please join us on Wednesday the 23rd of August FOR A PATH TO PEACE EVENT, when we gather to unify our passions for brotherhood and the dream of a world truly at peace with itself. Come walk the labyrinth with us.
This post has been contributed by a third party. The opinions, facts and any media content are presented solely by the author, and JewishPhoenix assumes no responsibility for them. MORE