Mutual respect is the foundation of genuine harmony.Dalai Lama XIV
I recently stepped outside of my comfort zone when I was asked to direct a volunteer choir. While I can read and play music on a couple of instruments, I have never joined a choir or had any experience in leading one. I was incredibly nervous – I felt inadequate and feared that my talents were lacking, that I was a misfit for the position.
However, I was pleased and relieved after the first few practices. The group was incredibly supportive. Individuals with various backgrounds (many with years of choir-directing under their belts) respected my instruction and my attempts to lead the choir through beautiful music. A few singers came up to me and expressed how they felt my individual background contributed positively to my new position. They offered advice and friendship. I felt respected, empowered, and comforted.
This month’s tenet is a particularly empowering one: “We are each unique and innately worthy of respect.” It speaks to our worth as individuals, and validates our unique characteristics and natural desire for respect. In our search for connection with others, we cannot ignore the uniqueness of each human. When we show respect to others, and receive it in turn, the result is “genuine harmony.”
Our writers this month provide us with a variety of perspectives on this tenet to inspire readers. Emily speaks of belongingness and the importance of showing our genuine selves, including our flaws, and Katrina writes about the importance of respecting ourselves. Kaloni shares her insights of how we each have a purpose and a unique role to play. Kaylee teaches us to look past outer circumstances to understand each individual. Shelli poetically describes the connections we feel with others, and Melanie shares beautiful insight she gained while snorkeling. Norma tells us of a couple spending time far out of their comfort zone, serving a group of unique individuals.
We hope you, as a reader, find inspiration about your individuality and worth as you read through the Big Ocean Women newsletter this month.