Wednesday, June 15, 2005

Another year, another peace walk.

Lift my hands off you,
Stand back,
Not looking for the differences,
Or naming the similarities,
Not wedging my interpretation,
Between you and me
My friend.

I shall stand back,
Observe the wonder of you
Appreciating you,
Without question
Or presumption.

And hope that I
Might have the gift
Of sight
To see this
Thing of beauty.

Hope also to have ears
To hear
Your message

And love to join our hands together
The greatest gift of all,

Our friendship.

I did the interfaith peace walk again this year. This is an annual event where I live - each year we walk around the various sites of different religions in the city (the Gudwara, the synagogue, a church, a Hindu temple, a mosque etc. etc...) This means its been one year since I first experienced a taste of Quakerism in the meeting house on last year's walk. I think this year was even better for me. I think knowing a little helped me to relax and appreciate it more. I'm more comfortable with myself than I was a year ago, feeling able to bring my friends from work along with me (and come out as a Quaker ;).) I think last year, there was still something of the rebel in me and I was conscious that what I was doing went against my background. Now, it seems so natural to me, and I love it for its own sake.

From the tremendous hospitality of the Sikhs, to the Muslims' struggle to communicate the peaceful message of Islam in a suspicious world, to the Jewish sense of humour and the warmth and openess of the Hindus...I'm left with a wonderful sense of the fundamental goodness of humanity, our diversity and our togetherness.

Another year, another peace walk, another opportunity to love our neighbours and make friends out of strangers.

I am happy.

1 comment:

Lorcan said...

Welcome home dear dear Friend

Thy Friend and friend