So often when we hear that we should love one another, it sounds like hard work, like a task, like a moral imperative that would be good to follow, but not very pleasant. And I admit there is something difficult about loving one another. But somewhere in the middle of it, comes a surprise. There really is divinity within each person—and when we see it, it is beautiful, joyful, mysterious, and wonderful. It is like the diamond that Dorothy Day was so quick to give to the homeless woman.
And not only that, when we risk opening our hearts to others, sometimes we experience the divinity that happens in the connections between us. We experience something of that ancient belonging for which we have been yearning. Ubuntu. We experience the oneness of all beings, our part in the family of all things. We realize that we are all gathered in a circle already, we are all part of one dreaming.
Those moments give me energy for the work of creating circles of love and faithfulness. Because we really do have to work at community. We have to make a choice for community. In our society, the bonds are frayed, and the mainstream is drifting toward isolation and competition. There are people who have no one with whom to share their real feelings. So dreaming in circles is about choosing connection, choosing love, joining hands with one other, and then another, finding the people with whom we can cast our lot, those who are similarly looking to manifest ubuntu in our lives.
When we choose community, when we practice loving a particular group of people, we are letting the reality of the universe enter our hearts—we are learning how to experience the reality that we truly are all part of one another. Of course we don’t usually get it right. Otherwise we wouldn’t need to practice. We are not here to try to fix everything in order to create some sort of perfect circle—we are the circle right now, trying to wake up together. Every person is sacred, and we are all one circle.