Yesterday was one amazing day. All days are amazing, and what made yesterday extraordinary was the fact that I came face to face with people from many different, faiths, cultures and ethnic backgrounds. All that I could see, hear, and sense was that we are all the same. As Walt Disney said, “it’s a small world after all, it’s a small, small, small, small world!”
The first thing I did after breakfast was to live stream the service from the Agape International Spiritual Center. There was a guest speaker Panache Desai, Panache is a thought leader, author, and speaker who reminds us that we are all enough. Panache message of healing is so compelling he was interviewed by Oprah on Super Bowl Sunday. I was very moved by his sincerity, authenticity, delivery, and desire to share the message that we are all enough, and so much more. The title of the talk was, Aline, Attune, and Ascend, you can watch the service here: https://agapelive.com/collections/streaming-archive/products/sunday-june-23rd-2019.
For me, what makes the Agape congregation so extraordinary is the acceptance, diversity, and unity between them! Agape is about as diverse as it can get. You will find people from all walks of life, all colors, all ethnicities, straight, gay, young, and old people all attending Agape. As the founder, Rev. Dr. Michale Beckwith says, “We accept everybody.” You will find the following explanation of Agape, on the Agape website: https://agapelive.com “A trans-denominational spiritual community open to all seekers in search of authentic spirituality, personal transformation and selfless service to humankind. Our aspiration is that every individual who is touched by the vibration of Agape is inspired to cultivate a heart of love as wide as the world.” The love in the Sanctuary at the Saban Theater in Beverly Hills is always palpable.
My girlfriend came over around 10 a.m. and we were off to a celebration at a Buddist Temple in Chino Hills, Wat Phrathat Doi Suthep. The people were all from a different religion and a different race than me. What we experienced was the same, love, unity and acceptance there is at Agape. It was amazing, we ate, we prayed, and were blessed by a monk who was, in my words defiantly prayed up. We both could feel his spirituality, love, and closeness with the Divine. They also fed us and a few hundred other guests a delicious Thai food style meal. Food can almost always bring people together.
But wait, we were not done yet, we drove just 2 1/2miles to a Hindu temple also in Chino Hills, BAPS Shri Swaminarayan Mandir https://www.baps.org/LosAngeles. The entire temple and surrounding campus is gorgeous, as you can see below. The beauty of the entire place was only superseded by the beauty of the people! They were from a completely different religion, a different race of people, and a different culture than the Thai Temple, or the congregation of Agape. And it was and is all the same. We ate a wonderful Indian meal, we prayed and we were blessed. It was exactly the same as Agape, and the Thai Temple there was only one this going on. Diversity, Union, and Love.
The point I’m making is the world and the people in it is so much all the same. It is a small world after all. Yes, there is a bit of a feeling of separation and isolation going on in the White House and a few who don’t see what my girlfriend and I saw yesterday. In reality, the appearance of separation is not real. This world and the people in it may look different, eat different foods, worship the Divine in a different way, and even speak a different language, and in reality, we are all the same, we are all truly one.
When looking for a place to live, may I suggest to Not limit yourselves to a neighborhood where the people look, talk, or pray the same as you. There is beauty, love, and harmony in diversity. We are all one people on this planet expressing ourselves and the Divine in unique and wonderful diverse ways. Don’t run from it, run to it and see, feel, and experience the love of God, the planet and the wonderful, awesome, extraordinary people you will encounter.
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