GREETING: Namaste` Dear Ones
MESSAGE: When April arrives, I (Marian) often think of rainy days even though I live in the desert. Perhaps it is a childhood memory of growing up in the mid-west where it often rained every day in April. As I was contemplating this month’s topic, I was drawn to the idea of gentle rains cleansing the body, mind, and spirit. However, as often is the case, Great Spirit led me to another thought which led me to “The Merchant of Venice.” I studied acting, directing, and theater history at Loyola University in Chicago. In one of my acting classes I performed the famous monologue of Portia’s from “The Merchant of Venice.” As I recalled those powerful words, I discovered what a wonderful spiritual lesson lies within the speech.
“The quality of mercy is not strained. It droppeth as the gentle rain from heaven upon the place beneath. It is twice blessed: it blesseth him that gives and him that takes. ‘Tis mightiest in the mightiest. It becomes the throned` monarch better than his crown. His scepter shows the force of temporal power, the attribute to awe and majesty wherein doth sit the dread and fear of kings, but mercy is above this sceptered sway. It is enthroned` in the hearts of kings. It is an attribute to God himself. And earthly power doth then show likest God’s when mercy seasons justice.”
The speech goes on a bit more but I believe that the strength of the lesson (for us) is within the section that I have rewritten here. When we need to forgive ourselves or someone else, mercy cannot (should not) be constrained or forced. Forcing it is more often than not a mental activity. Mercy is loving and gentle. That is an emotional and spiritual practice. Mercy blesses both people…the one who forgives and the one who is forgiven. Mercy is powerful. Mercy, in a leader (whether of a country, a classroom, corporation, etc.) demonstrates more strength than the power of the person’s position. When we humans show mercy and forgiveness we are demonstrating an attribute of the God-Creator! And then our mercy and forgiveness contains the quality of justice. We do not seek vengeance…..we seek justice by offering forgiveness.
Let us forgive ourselves and each other with the energy of a soft, gentle rain.
In love and joy,
Marian and Garrett
Western Spirit Enrichment Center
Phone # 602-540-5808