images“Each person has inside a basic decency and goodness.  If he/she listens to it and acts on it, he/she is giving a great deal of what it is the world needs most.” –Pablo Casals   

In the light of the recent and horrendous shooting in Orlando, I allowed myself to calm and settle when I came across this quote by Casals.  

On Sunday Mike and I had the good fortune of attending two musical events.  One featured three young “Rising Stars”, a cellist, violinist, and pianist, playing pieces by Bach, Chopin, Dvorak, Ravel and others.  They were all about 15 years young!  My, was their music inspiring!  Touching the mind and the heart, evoking emotions and beauty.  And they were awe inspiring as well.  Their talent, dedication, sensitivity, and obvious enthusiasm for the music was remarkable.  What goodness!  

Next we attended a Jazz Vespers, featuring a friend, Karen Graves and her Quartet.  The minister spoke between the pieces.  In closing, he made reference to the Orlando shooting, and to the countless other horrors in our world today, refugees, famine, inequality, climate disasters…

images-2In the face of this, it is easy to despair, go numb, become cynical and/or hopeless.  He also suggested that there are many reasons not to go this route, even in the face of great tragedy.  There is also an enormous tide of goodness all around, arising, welling up.  People are taking stands, speaking up, joining together, caring, acting for good — the common good, the good of communities, people, creatures, the planet itself.

Who Am I in this light? is a good question for us each to ask ourselves.  And, Where Am I?   How Am I?   What do I stand for? At this moment.

The minister’s benediction was an exhortation to go out in love, to go forth and be and do good, something kind, generous, thoughtful…and to keep it up.  No matter how small the acts, when many of us do this, it contributes to the basic decency and goodness in the world, it shifts the tide, is part of the turning.  And there is not the slightest doubt, this is what the world needs most.  It nourishes our souls and spirits, and each other.  images-1

Casals’ quote actually had two more sentences:   “It is not complicated but it takes courage. It takes courage for a person to listen to his/her own goodness and act on it.”  

Let us find our courage, and show our goodness.

Jill Schroder is the author of BECOMING: Journeying Toward Authenticity.  BECOMING is an invitation for self-reflection, and to mine our memorable moments for insights, meaning, and growth.  Check the website for a sample chapter, or see the reviews to get a flavor for the volume.  Your feedback, forwards, tweets, likes are most welcome.


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