Here’s a quote that’s been on my mind for years and years:
I think the most important question facing humanity is, ‘Is the universe a friendly place?’ This is the first and most basic question all people must answer for themselves.
Apparently, Einstein said this but deeper digging informs me that isn’t true.
Origins aside, the question is important. Do you believe that the universe is ultimately benevolent?
I’m definitely one of those people who reside on the friendly side of the fence. I love this world, this life, and I see it as an opportunity for the soul to don a human bodysuit and play on the Earth plane. I believe there’s a friendly force out there, filtering through existence with a stream of love and blessings. Oh, and challenges. But I’m also one of those people who believes the challenges are here to teach us and help us grow.
Who am I to talk of blessings? A white, middle-class, middle-aged woman who lives in a tidy suburb with other white, middle-class people. Blessings abound.
What about those who are truly suffering? I have the capacity to imagine what it would be like to suffer to the point of giving up the idea of a friendly universe, of losing my faith. Perhaps if I lived in a war zone or if I experienced irretrievable loss. If I faced discrimination and limitation based on the very nature of my being. Or if I was stuck in some way – financially, physically, emotionally.
But I am not. Right now, I am free. My choices are limitless. And so, every day, I choose benevolence. Even when the going gets tough, I seek that kindness at the centre of the universe. I know it’s there because it has shown itself to me again and again throughout my life, in small ways and in big.
With that perspective, my job is to pass this kindness on, to share the blessings and the joy. To be supportive of myself and others as we go through the challenges. To forgive. Because I believe that’s what a benevolent universe wants us to do.
I have decided to stick with love. Hate is too great a burden to bear.
May we all stick with love in 2024. I know this is challenging when it seems like the world has gone mad. As we witness the effects of climate change taking place all around us and even just admitting that there's a possibility of Trump returning to the White House – these are the kinds of things that could tip the balance toward hate. But no matter what, we need to hold true to the concept of universal benevolence. That faith can help us choose to forgive when the need arises, and turn ourselves toward love, gratefully accepting each opportunity to learn and to grow.