By now the world is familiar with the traditional greeting of Namaste. The physical gesture of the folded hands is combined with the verbal greeting ‘Namaste’. It is a combination of the two Sanskrit words : Namah meaning a reverential bow and te meaning to you.
I like this interpretation of the word: The Spirit within me bows to the Spirit within you. I think that it is such a wonderful acknowledgement that all human beings are created by the Divine Spirit and are to be treated as sacred.
I remember Alan Cohen writing about a seminar in preparation for which he asked the participants to send him a picture of themselves as babies. He then got these pictures transferred on to T-shirts which he asked the participants to wear during the seminar. He instructed them that if they got angry with another participant they had to look at that person’s T-shirt and imagine that they were dealing with a sensitive baby rather than an adult. He told them to talk to the other with patience and love as they would to a child because everyone carries within them the inner child – that needs to be handled with care.
If we carried out this exercise in daily life and imagined that everyone was carrying not an inner child but the Divine Spirit within, how much more sensitive and careful we would be.
I know that in a recent interaction with another, I completely forgot to respect that Divine Spirit within the other person. I was too busy nurturing my inner child to recognize that I was hurting the other person. This is not the first time I’ve done this nor will it be the last. However, I’m becoming more aware and conscious of it and hopefully growing to be more sensitive and compassionate. It’s a long road, but I’m taking tiny steps.