Friday, January 17, 2014

The Epiphany Dream

Epiphany's dream is that all people (Wise Persons from the East, Jews, Gentiles, Shepherds, yes, even King Herod, and the children of Bethlehem too) are to be accepted and valued, not because they hold a particular faith, or hold my values or yours, and not because they adhere to the same laws as you and I do, but simply because they (we) are all human beings.  If we give credence to God creating man/woman, then we must, or so it seems to me, accept the Quaker notion that there is "that of God" in all persons.  We are all human!

The distinctions or categories we have made up:  Us/Them; Democrat/Republican; East/West; Christian/Jew/Muslim; Black/White; Male/Female; have no place in the Epiphany dream.  Indeed, these separations are really ludicrous!  We are all human!

Nowhere is this more clearly expressed than in the words penned by Shakespeare in the "Merchant of Venice":

"Hath not a Jew eyes? hath not a Jew hands, organs, dimensions, senses, affections, passions? fed with the same food, hurt with the same weapons, subject to the same diseases, healed by the same means, warmed and cooled by the same winter and summer as a Christian is?  If you prick us do we not bleed?  If you tickle us do we not laugh?  If you poison us do we not die?"

You can substitute any of your categories in place of the word "Jew" and it still gives the same message.  The Epiphany dream could become REALity if we would simply accept and value one another, and work hard to avoid our made-up categories.  We are all human!  We are meant to become community.

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