He drew a circle that shut me out-
Heretic, rebel, a thing to flout.
But love and I had the wit to win:
We drew a circle and took him In!
It’s the community’s job to figure out how we can stretch into the so-called margins to broaden our understanding and the ability to be inclusive. Inclusivity is not ‘how do we make you a part of what we are?’ but ‘how do we become more of what you are?’
~angel Kyodo williams Sensei
You have to love your country the way you love your friends, the way your spouse loves you, right? The people who love you don’t blow smoke up your backside. They tell you hard truths. They love you… my wife, if something’s going wrong, she’s going to tell me… That’s the nature of the relationship… The question really is… can we get to a place where citizens are encouraged to see themselves critically, encouraged to see their history critically?
Differences are not intended to separate, to alienate. We are different precisely in order to realize our need of one another.
To be free, you must embrace
the breadth of your own existence
But to actually be free, you must
know and you must fight for the entire
Universes inside of everyone else.
~Theresa I. Soto
Empathy isn’t just remembering to say ‘that must really be hard’—it’s figuring out how to bring difficulty into the light so it can be seen at all… Empathy means acknowledging a horizon of context that extends perpetually beyond what you can see.
In a true community we will not choose our companions, for our choices are so often limited by self-serving motives. Instead, our companions will be given to us by grace. Often they will be persons who will upset our settled view of self and world. In fact, we might define true community as the place where the person you least want to live with always lives
~Parker J. Palmer
(Curated and adapted for KUF from the 2022 Soul Matters materials for the theme Widening the Circle.)