I received this in the mail today and thought it was a wonderful thought to keep in mind as I immerse myself into learning the process of dialogue. What a great way to remember my individuality and to respect that of others too!
There are two faces to one coin; a person who wishes to live fully as a human being needs to understand that the existence of one’s unique individuality has to be acknowledged, as well as the existence of the group or collective. One cannot exist without the other. Individuals who are developing spiritually feel a personal sense of value. They clearly recognize their uniqueness and have the feeling that there is the freedom to be whatever they choose to be. At the same time, their sense of personal independence allows them to come close to others and work with them. They do not have selfish independence. They get close to others because they have found fulfillment in their own self. Someone who has truly found the value of the self above and beyond labels, name, fame and approval can effectively cooperate within the collective or group and interact appropriately. Such people not only feel themselves to be a part of the whole but, even more importantly, the group or collective feels them to be a part of the whole.
In nature, when birds have to fly to a warmer climate in winter, they flock together and start their journey as a group. The success of the journey depends on the group: if an individual bird does not join the group, it cannot reach the destination on its own. Birds fly in a particular formation, with an appropriate space between them as they fly. If they fly too close to each other, their wings get entangled; they lose their balance and fall. If they remain too far from each other, the formation cannot be created properly, and they are not able to ride the currents of air, which help to propel them in their flight. Furthermore, the leader of the formation does not remain the leader throughout the whole flight, but moves back and allows another to take its place. This repositioning continues throughout the flight until the destination is reached, allowing individual birds to contribute to the success of the journey.
The reality of life is that we are individuals within a collective whole. Just like the birds, we are all a part of an unlimited Flight of Harmony.
Love and peace,