But what does respect mean to us today, this isn’t 1750? How do WE honour all of creation? The obvious is recycle, renew, reuse…and do whatever we can as individuals to reduce our negative impact on the world. And when you consciously do something positive for the environment, “thank yourself” on behalf of your grandchildren and their grandchildren (unto 7 generations). Gratitude is a huge part of respect.
You can begin by being grateful to the Creator, for breathe, for earth’s bounty (food) for light and warmth from the sun, for compounds of ore and mineral which build our homes. Gratitude for the love and companionship of other people, and for animals both friends and food; clearly this list goes on forever. A major step into happiness is being grateful for each moment and what it brings, even gratitude for the awareness of feeling grateful.
While respect for all of creation would be nice; personally I would just be happy to see human-beings start showing respect for each other. Then advance to respecting all sentient creatures and perhaps one joyous day respect all of creation.
I guess the best first step is to stop judging and start accepting. No person (including one’s self) is better than or less than another… we are quite simply different. Seneca said, “A thing be neither good nor bad but that we think it so”. So stop thinking so damn much! We are what we are… a thing is what it is… acceptance is about living with the reality of this moment. Respect can only exist hand in hand with acceptance.
Parable time, woo-hoo!!! The porcupine has quills (simple fact) he does not judge these as bad or good. They are just there riding around on his back. The fox in any moment does not judge the porcupine’s quills as bad or good, in fact he probably doesn’t think about porcupines much at all. Now in the moment that the fox attempts to eat the porcupine, they both make a judgment about quills. Fox thinks quills (the ones in his face anyway) are bad and porcupine thinks quills are good.
What I am saying is, “don’t judge people”… you can judge an
experience as bad or good, and gratefully take the lesson from that moment (porcupines are not good eating) and grow from it (intellectually, emotionally, physically or spiritually). Respect can only come from a place of acceptance. “Civilized”(I use the term loosely) man has a long history of judging people, to quote one of our greatest prophet/teachers, “Judge not lest ye be judged” and he said it just like that in perfect Jamesian English LOL.
The fact is judgment is the bane of our existence…first we judge
ourselves most harshly, then to make us feel better we judge others to be “less than” we are. Accept that you are a work in progress… forgive your mistakes…and be the best YOU that you can be in any given moment. Accept yourself and you will be able to respect yourself. Accept others and you will be able to respect others. Treat everyone with kindness and respect and the world will be better for having you in it. Have a joyous day.