Love is not a thing ... it's an idea, an emotion, a state of being, a quest, and a gift. I could not live without the love of my family.
Health is not a thing: it is a state of being, but perceived differently by individuals. I have a strong label on my medical folders: multiple sclerosis. It carries with it a prognosis unknown, with the bleakest projections far away on the spectrum from the mildest, benign end. End, you say? There is no end to a spectrum. And if you believe that, then both ends are equally infinite, and the darkest belief is balanced by the brightest.
If this is to be a bucket list of sorts ... the ten things I could not live without ... I really have to play with the word things, because what I could not live without are intangible ideas or states of being. there is nothing tangible on my list:
- love: to be loved, and to love in return,
- self worth: a belief that I can love and be loved
- competence: being able to provide what I can do to better the states of others
- compassion: to receive compassion and to feel compassion for others
- understanding: a set of knowledge and an awareness of what that knowledge might provide
- appreciation: for those I love, for the world of nature in which we live, for air, food, water and shelter
- courage: to face whatever obstacles stand in the way of those I love
- will: to overcome those obstacles despite whatever personal challenges I feel at the time
- success: as defined for myself, and as recognized by those I love, and in those I love
- self-confidence: to allow myself to speak up for those I love, and for myself.
Does this list negate the existence or importance of a spiritual belief? Does it neglect homage to a superior being? Does it remove the obligation of duty to a religious belief? Does it place us above a God?
If in reading this list, one is discomforted by the absence of a deity in name, then one is missing all that lies between the lines. Hindus, Taoists and Buddhists recognize the existence of the greatest spirit within ourselves and each other. Their greeting, Namaste, expresses this belief, this recognition, and this humility. Isn't it hubris, you might ask, to assume that the greatest deity resides within us? Humble may be the word ... no one of us is any better, nor any less, than any other of us. "The divine within me recognizes and bows to the divine within you." What a powerful message to share with everyone in your life ... those you love ... those you dislike ... those you fear ... those you feel responsible toward ... Namaste is the great equalizer. It is a word that challenges each of us to be worthy, to be better, to be as loving and compassionate a provider as we may have been taught to believe that God is.
Namaste, my friend. I trust that you understand my writings. They are written from within, with love.