Compassion. Compassion. Compassion.

We all know how to get to Carnegie Hall: Practice. Practice. Practice. The same route takes us to Buddhist enlightenment, or awakening, or whatever we want to call it.

My teacher, Thich Nhat Hanh, says he knows the address and zip code of the Kingdom of God. They are here and now. And I’d suggest that the route to the Kingdom of God, along with the practice, includes: Compassion. Compassion. Compassion.

This morning, as I read the New York Times online, as I do every morning, I felt deep despair over where the United States, the nation where I live, is heading. The flippancy I expressed yesterday in Duck & Cover, Run-Hide-Flight had taken a terrible turn south. I wished I could let loose those Tears of Equilibrium that my blogging friend and honorary granddaughter Amie Zor wrote about yesterday.

But I know what will save me. I am on my way today to the Dar Al-Hijrah Islamic Center in Falls Church, Virginia, an open mosque whose name means Land of Migration. My wife, Carol, and I will be taking coats and blankets for Syrian refugees in Turkey. And we will stand with the Muslim community as our Unitarian Universalist friends and the wider interfaith community gather at a nearby Christian church and walk to the mosque.

I did something similar a week or so after the 9/11 attacks. But this time the outlook seems even bleaker for my Muslim-American friends. I wish them well, and I suspect that I will benefit more than they will from my joining with them today.

As-salamu alaykum.

Copyright 2015 © Mel Harkrader Pine

5 Comments Add yours

  1. Do you know what “as-salamu alaykum” means? Just curious.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. melhpine says:

      Peace be with you.

      Liked by 1 person

    2. melhpine says:

      The funny thing is that Jews have the same greeting in Hebrew: Shalom Alechem.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Cool. If I had to guess, I’d say that Hebrew and Arabic are related languages.

        Liked by 1 person

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