“We have learned to fly in the air like birds and swim the sea like fish, but we have not mastered the simple art of living together as brothers.” Martin Luther King, Jr.

Modern technology is supposed to simply our lives. Automobiles, cellular telephones, computers and so many more laborsaving devices can free us from having our energy tied up in physical survival. But too often we become engrossed in these synthetic creations and lose sight of our life’s purpose. It never ceases to amaze me when I see two people sitting across the table from each other in a restaurant, and one or both of them are talking on cell phones! What happened to friendship, conversation, and communion? Technology can keep us separated from the warmth and intimacy of love.

Everyone has a profound influence on the people around us. Each thought we think, every action we take, makes a difference in the world. Everything and everyone in turn influences us. We can easily see this when there is a major catastrophe, such as September 11, 2001, or Hurricane Katrina. People are moved by the needs of others. People feel the pain of their immediate or global neighbors. On a smaller and more personal scale, most people experience this awareness when there is a major event: a marriage, a birth, a death, even a change in job. These life changes affect everything we do and all of our interactions.

Realizing how interconnected we are with all of humanity brings with it a responsibility to think and act with goodness for all concerned. Imagine how much better our world would be if everyone on the planet practiced the simple truth, “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.” Every culture and scripture in the world teaches some version of this universal truth. Yet how many people actually live it?

We all need each other. Part of the work of the soul is to learn, as Martin Luther King, Jr., said, to live together as brothers [and sisters.] “This call for a worldwide fellowship that lifts neighborly concern beyond one’s tribe, race, class and nation is in reality a call for an all-embracing and unconditional love for all men,” he said. “When I speak of love I am not speaking of some sentimental and weak response which is little more than emotional bosh. I am speaking of that force which all the great religions have seen as the supreme unifying principle of all life. Love is somehow the key that unlocks the door which leads to ultimate reality.”

Learning to love other people is an art and a skill. We grow in soul evolution as we learn to see everyone as a Divine Friend or a neighbor. We need to learn to care for other people and put their needs ahead of our own. Amazing as it seems, when we love others in this way, we become more attuned to our own Divine nature. As we learn to open our minds to another person to discern his or her needs, as we develop the essential life skills of listening and attentiveness, we become more loving. We come to understand our influence and relationship with the entire universe.

Together we can bring about a more compassionate world, one in which we all live together as brothers and sisters, doing the work of the soul individually and collectively.

Author's Bio: 

Dr. Laurel Clark is the national president of the School of Metaphysics, a 501(c)(3) educational organization with 15 branches in nine states. She is a teacher, an intuitive counselor, and an interfaith minister. She is a contributor to the book Peacemaking: Lessons from the Lives of Nine Nobel Peace Laureates published by SOM Publishing and is also the author of a number of books including Dharma: Finding Your Soul's Purpose. Dr. Clark can be reached through the School of Metaphysics, http://www.som.org, http://www.peacedome.org and http://www.dreamschool.org. The school is headquartered at 163 Moon Valley Road, Windyville, MO 65783. Local branches may be found at the http://www.som.org online campus.