This is 2016 — and there has been no progress in the world toward understanding that we are all one spiritual family and equal in God’s eyes. The world has not yet learned that we should treat each other as the brothers and sisters we have always been, working toward creating a unified world. The “Golden Rule” has often been preached, but almost never applied. How can we change this? How do we teach peace in the world and make it last?
The answer involves many factors, but we believe the most important one is our children. If every parent taught children respect for each other, kindness and humility — and taught that whatever faith they are brought up in does not make them better or worse than anyone else — then we would have a much more peaceful world. Above all, parents must teach love, and be examples of love — following God’s example of unconditional love. This begins from the first steps in life, even in the crib. Every child must know that we are here to give the best of ourselves, and that every single human being has something good to give. Parents have an obligation to participate in their children’s spiritual education, so that they can grow up with integrity, humility and peace — and so they can learn that it is not our possessions that give us value; it is rather the quality of our souls, of the spirit in which we live and conduct ourselves among other human beings.
One of the greatest lessons a child should learn is to take care of one’s inner self, not only to honor one’s own value, but to grow up with a sense of integrity and responsibility. This means that every child has to learn the value of life — not only human life, but the value of animals and plants as well, for they are part of our common environment. It also means that everyone must give of themselves — and that those who have more are responsible for helping those who have little or nothing. Children can learn this in small ways from the beginning — for example by sharing toys or games, or simply by giving of their time to other children, with patience and compassion.
When possible, travel to other parts of the world is beneficial for children to learn how much we all have in common regardless of our backgrounds or culture. When a child from one country, for example, encounters a child from another, even though there may be a language barrier, children can always figure out ways to play with each other. After all, no child is born with prejudice, racism or feelings of superiority or inferiority; it is the adults who put such thoughts into the minds of children. Children of different races or economic backgrounds must be taught by their parents that no one is better or worse than anyone else, and that we are all members of one spiritual family — as we are all eternal children of God.
Children should learn to ask others what they can do to help in any situation. Helping creates a connection and a bond between one person and another. Helping also comes out of a fundamental kindness, which must be taught from the beginning of life. This begins at home, expanding into the neighborhood and beyond into the world as a whole. But without spiritual education, so that every child may develop a strong conscience, learning kindness can be difficult. And the basis for this is understanding God’s constant and eternal love for us all:
In God’s eyes, all human beings are of equal value, regardless of the poor guidance one may receive and the mistakes one may commit during life on Earth. This fundamental equality exists regardless of which lifetime one may be in on Earth, or whether one is even currently incarnated on Earth. Behind this is always the unconditional nature of God’s love — the love which can inspire each of us to realize that the life of every human being has meaning, and therefore must be protected. Furthermore, God’s light is in each of us, as our spirits were created by God — and therefore we can learn, starting as children, to look into each others’ eyes and see that the light in our innermost beings is always shining and is the light that connects us for all eternity. This connection is love — and has one fundamental purpose: love itself, and the expansion of such love throughout the world. Our point is that all that really matters is love, and the learning and growth that comes from experiencing love. If a child can experience love at home every day, it will become virtually impossible for the darkness of hate or prejudice to emerge later in life. Peace will result — the lasting peace that comes from generations and generations of children having been raised in an atmosphere of unconditional love, equality of spirit, and kindness toward others as a way of life.
With God’s help, let us create a peaceful future, which can only come about when we have all learned that we are brothers and sisters in one spiritual family.
Reverend Nilcelia Davidson and Reverend Roger Davidson