“The miracle of we*” is one of the most beautifully descriptive phrases I know.
Life is relationships enabled by awareness. “We” is a relationship of the highest level, the “black belt” of awareness.
There is nothing to stop us from a life filled with “We.” Yet, too often, it’s in short supply!
Perhaps if we better understood this miracle, it would be easier to cultivate in our lives.
Let’s explore it by considering the example of mutual best friends.
She is “My” best friend. I am “Her” best friend.
Does the reciprocal “My” in this relationship sum to “We?”
I don’t think so.
I believe there are three, not two entities involved in “We,” namely, “You,” “I,” and, most importantly, “Us!”
One might ask, “Isn’t the “Us” implied?”
Not when we take it for granted!
Weak individuals don’t sum to a strong “We.” Neither do relationships failing to nurture “Us.”
Picture a tripod. A tripod has three legs. All three legs are required to support a camera.
“We” is like a tripod. It requires three strong legs; “You,” “I,” and “Us.”
Perhaps you are wondering what this has to do with awareness?
For most of us, awareness is “Self” centered; we can check that box.
Many of us are aware of the importance of our partner’s development, so let’s check that box as well.
But what about awareness and nurturing of “Us”? This box is often unchecked! When “Us” is ignored, “We” digresses to “My,” destroying it!
Our country is Exhibit A!
My brother is a member of the clergy. Years ago, he relayed a story to me I have never forgotten.
While in seminary, Paul went to dinner at the home of an elderly beloved professor. They ended up in his library, talking into the evening’s small hours about various theological matters. Noticing that it was late and his mentor was tired, Paul asked a final question:
“Professor, in all your many years of study and practice of faith, what would you say is the most important thing you learned?”
The professor considered the question a moment and replied:
“To hold hands with God and your fellow man…., and if you let go, you must find a way again to hold hands.”
What profound advice! Holding hands requires a joint effort. Holding hands is about “Us.” It’s much easier to let go than to find a way to keep holding hands, especially in these divided and tumultuous times.
It’s not easy to pursue “Us” when awareness centers on “Self.”
Our nation’s survival, even the survival of our planet, is contingent on the miracle of “We,” which requires less “My” and more “Us.”
I’ve decided to practice nurturing “We” during this politically charged season by exploring ways to hold hands again with people whose beliefs I find disagreeable.
They’re not difficult to find!
Fundamental Principle: Discovering the role awareness plays in life
Essential Question: With Whom might you hold hands with today?
Link To Previous Posts: https://tim-coats.com/posting-briefs/
*From an unpublished manuscript written by the American philosopher Ken Wilber.