I remember delivering a speech a few years ago to an audience of middle school girls.
“What about you never changes? From the time you are born to the time you die?
One girl raised her hand, “Your personality.”
Another, “Your eye color.”
And another, (and the answer I was looking for or at least close to it.).
“Your essence,” she shouted joyfully.
“Right on,” I responded. “Your soul. Your spirit. The you of you. The you that came into the world and the you that will go out.”
I then said, “Sister. You came up with that answer so quickly and so boldly. Tell me your name and when you tell me your name, stand up tall and say it loud and proud.”
She stood in that big auditorium and shouted, “My name is ESSENCE.”
We smiled at each other and knew of course, that our exchange wasn’t by accident
And herein lies the problem…or the challenge…or the struggle…or the wonder.
At least as I see it.
In that world of our “essence”, there is no color, no money, no power, no gender or fame. We are one…we are many. We are equal. We are Love.
But then something happens.
We become human…with eyes that see and ears that hear. Feelings, words, poverty, hunger, survival, money, ego, success, race, gender, achievement all come…with being human.
It’s easy to talk about equality when we talk in the world of essence…
And a lot harder to figure out how equality plays out in this HUMAN realm.
It’s messy. It’s confusing. It’s complicated.
I try to hold and be with both when I’m with a person…especially a person who is angry, sad or in pain.
That’s all for now.