We are not human beings on a spiritual journey. We are spiritual beings on a human journey.
-Stephen Covey

From "A Revolution in Kindness," edited by Anita Roddick, excerpt by Matthew Fox:

A kind religious world - now there lies a radical idea. Can we imagine a world where Jews and Muslims are not fighting over a Holy Land that supposedly was left exclusively to each by a confused God who is the God of both?

Can we imagine a world where Hindus and Muslims are not killing each other in India and Pakistan and Kashmir? A world where Jerry Falwell and company are not calling hell and damnation down onto homosexuals and others made in the image of God? And where inquisitions and crusades are outlawed and apologies are made by Popes for anti-Semitism, witch burnings, crusades, and inquisitions of the past? And where the gold stolen from the indigenous peoples of the Americas that still adorns the churches in Rome might be returned to its poverty-stricken rightful owners? Yes, a kind religion would be a revolution.

The word kindness, after all, comes from the word for kin. It is about how we treat those who are nearest to us. It is a family word. If religion were required to be kind it would have to find kinship with other religions, or better still, other spiritual traditions.

A reconstruction of religion on the basis of fierce kindness and real kinship would require a deconstruction as well. Are we capable of deconstructing our religious attitudes to make room for this reconstructed kindness to emerge? I would hope so, and I suspect that Jesus and Isaiah, Buddha and Muhammad, Martin Luther King, Jr. and the Dalai Lama would concur. In fact, is it so strange a suggestion to propose that this is what they taught in their lifetimes?

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