One of the things I find beautiful about humanity is the variety. Tall, short, fat, thin, the rainbow of melanin, brown eyes and blue (and grey and green and all the fun contacts out there)…
It’s amazing to me that with all of the physical variety that anyone could think we’d have any less variety in our spirits. Atheist, Catholic, Buddhist, Wiccan, Protestant, Muslim, Jew, Druid, and so on nearly ad infinitum. Even individuals within those faiths have differing opinions, on both major and minor issues. Not all religions teach this, but there are enough that teach they are the “one true right way” to believe–the one true god, the one true moral code, one true afterlife, etc. Even for those who don’t teach this, it can be difficult for people to conceive of seeing the world from a vastly different viewpoint. And how not? Your experience is what it is, you cannot have the same exact experience as another person even if you are joined at the hip. We can be empathic, but our lived experiences are still different. This is what helps to create the wondrous tapestry and allow for the infinite possibility of life. No one person, no one religion, no one way of life is more, or less, deserving of respect than any other.
This is evident in the New Age movement and much of the occult. As much as I am a traditionalist and love established teachings and rituals, there is still a large component that depends on the individual Wiccan’s experience. My experience of the Mysteries is mine, but no less valid than another Wiccan’s. When using crystals in healing, the researched and published use for a crystal is a great guideline–but if you don’t get the result you looked for, and instead get it from a different stone, is it any less valid? No, of course not. As a crystal has its own resonance frequency, we as humans also each have our unique frequencies, and it is to be expected that the way those frequencies come together and affect each other will be different, person to person. What works for “most” frequencies won’t work for all.
This is true in medicine as well. Cardiovascular disease is something of an epidemic in America. My time as a heart transplant nurse taught me one thing: Every body is different. Not everybody–that is true, too–but every body. Our service was lung and heart transplants, most of which were lungs. All of them were started on Prograf, but over time many patients didn’t tolerate the side effects, or had breakthrough rejection episodes, and would have to get switched to a new anti-rejection medicine–Neoral, Rapamune, etc. No one rejection medicine works the best for all patients, but all start on Prograf because the others are associated with higher levels of necrosis at the anastomosis site. Our heart transplant patients had similar variety, and hypertensive patients will all tell you–there are several different medications to treat what is, basically, the same problem. Every body requires a different treatment, a different dosage. Beta blockers, calcium channel blockers, ACE-inhibitors, diuretics, etc.
This understanding needs to be translated into every day life. I just accepted a new job. I’ll be providing nursing care in sedation services at a clinic that provides legal abortion for women who have made the choice to terminate their pregnancies. During my shadow experience there, I learned that people from all backgrounds, all belief systems, all races, all ages have to make a difficult choice. And it happens more than anyone wants to talk about. It’s truly not a simple choice of life or not life. It is not for me or anyone else to make a moral judgment call for these people–however I can treat them with kindness, compassion, and respect, and to give quality nursing care to all persons, regardless of their reasons.
Live and let live.