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Beside Restful Waters

by Greg Hermann

“Unity cannot exist when exclusion is allowed to occur.

What brings us together cannot exist in the same time and place as what keeps us apart.”

Richard Wagamese: Embers – One Ojibway’s Meditations

I watch my grandchildren grow. My son is in the military. He and his family have been around the world. His children have never been in predominantly Caucasian schools. It is a blessing to hear them speak of their classmates without reference to race or nationality or other perceptions.

I still see other people through my eyes of difference. I find this a frustrating reality of mine. I don’t like it, but it is real, and I still don’t like it.

I noticed a powerful and deeply spiritual awakening many years back when I was volunteering in prisons. During initial introductions to the people around me, I saw differences: race, color of skin, my perception of sexual orientation……. All these perceptions dissolved as I got to know the people, their hearts, their dreams. With the growth of relationships, perceptions disappeared.

With the growth of relationship, perception disappears.

Growth takes me time.

Growth requires my vulnerability.

Vulnerability is painful.

Pain involves a crisis.

Crisis creates clarity.

Clarity is connection, relationship, fullness of life…….


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