What Were You Taught To Fear?

I find snakes and lizards of all kinds and sizes fascinating and, for the most part, beautiful. My daughter-in-law is afraid of snakes. There is a reptile house at our local zoo and I have wanted to take my granddaughter in to see everything. Her sweet mother doesn’t even want to walk by it. Yesterday was my opportunity because my son and I took Hannah to the zoo by ourselves. I was very excited and my daughter-in-law was relieved that she didn’t have to be with us at the reptile house!

Hannah ran from window to window and it took some effort to get her to slow down so I could be sure she was actually seeing the snakes and lizards. She just turned two a few months ago so she had no idea what to look for. One of the small snakes was the color of lime sherbet; it almost looked like it would glow in the dark. She was fascinated. I think her favorites were the large lizards. At one window she said, “Gama your lizard (the one on my fence) is small and this lizard is very big!” What a joy to introduce this sweet being to creatures many people avoid because they are so frightened.

That experience was the highlight of my day. It was a special day at the zoo: field trips from at least 4 different schools. The reptile house was filled with shining faces and small hands pressed against glass to see white, yellow, green, brown, and black snakes. Squeals of excitement rang out as wide eyes came upon Gilda monsters. No fear; only openness to things they had only seen pictures or drawings of before that moment. I am grateful that these children have been given the opportunity to appreciate another living being rather than fear it because someone else does. I am grateful to my daughter-in-law for consciously choosing not to pass her fear on to her daughter.

I am grateful to my parents who taught me to respect that some snakes are poisonous and for taking the time to be sure I knew the difference. When I was little, we were stationed in New Mexico so the knowledge was important. I am grateful to the parents of a classmate in 4th grade whose parents let him have a pet snake. He brought it to school and we all were allowed to hold it, pet it, learn from it and him. I always smile because he carried it in a pillowcase that he could hang from his head and still ride his bike to school!

Life has taught me to fear some things and even some people. I continue to heal those parts of myself that hold unreasonable fear. Fear can be my friend and teacher at times because it alerts to me potential danger so that I can make wise choices. It has taken some practice to learn when to welcome Teacher Fear and when to release and heal fear that hampers my life flow and my ability to embrace life fully. Perhaps another day I will delve more into that process. Today it is enough to recognize that many of our fears are based on how we have been taught to perceive what we are experiencing rather than the truth of who we are and what is happening.

Aum shanti.

Synchronous Vibration

When two people meet and feel that instant harmony and connection, it is often described as synchronicity. When two people meet and seem unable to connect or relate with one another, it can be described as a lack of resonance. It is quite the same with ideas and opinions, I can respect an idea someone presents even if I personally do not resonate with it. I can experience synchronicity with that same person if we both come into a situation with clarity, openness and compassion.

Oneness does not mean or even imply sameness. The Galapagos Islands are said to be the only place on earth where animals live with few, if any,  predators. They exist at an unusually high level of synchronous vibration. Their life force energies harmonize and create a reverberation or resonance that results in harmony, beauty and peace.

Human beings struggle with this idea of diversity within unity. Many who ardently seek peace in our world believe that the answer is to get every nation to embrace democracy. Religions exhort members to gain converts because theirs is the only true path. My response to that particular approach is that religion is the outward expression of a person’s inner connection with God. With that in mind, it makes sense that there are so many different expressions of God’s presence in people’s hearts and minds. Just as flowers abound in a myriad of shapes and colors, humans bloom and the love of their Creator manifests in a myriad of rituals, prayers, forms, and communities.

We are reminded in literature and movies that no two snowflakes are alike. We find that a wonder of nature to be enjoyed and appreciated. Why then do we struggle so with the same idea regarding human beings? Even identical twins have differences, though not in their obvious appearance. Their personalities and the paths they choose in life can often reflect innate differences that are quite unexpected.

Each of us is a unique and wonder-filled expression of the Divine. May we celebrate our uniqueness even as we seek to create harmony in the symphony of our human lives. May we welcome those who are different even as we seek the common ground of synchronous vibration so that we can build community on many levels of awareness and experience. May we be Divinely One and may we resonate with one another in love and compassion of All That Is.