Reflection 21st September 2014

Embarrassing and terrible questions

We see in others what we fear in ourselves.

That’s why the second great commandment is so important. “To love the neighbour as we love ourselves” means that we must also accept in ourselves what there is about us that we don’t like, or fear, or devalue.

All love starts with the way I feel about myself. If I know myself to be sincere, I never doubt anyone else’s sincerity. When I know myself to be good-willed, I assume the good will of others. When I know myself to be honest, I trust the other—not to the point of foolishness but always to the point of understanding.

“It is your business,” Horace writes, “when the wall next door catches fire.” If I realize myself to be responsible for the rest of the world, as well as for myself, I can’t possibly say that whatever affects them—legislation, natural disaster, loss of resources—has nothing to do with me.

Joan Chittister

(Reflections are provided each week by a member of the congregation.)

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