I have been practicing Ram Dass’ meditations a lot recently.
There is a beautiful moment in his Resting in Love meditation where he asks us to contemplate:
Imagine, at this moment, that you are just the way you are, and you are totally loved. Feel what that feels like. Not for how you wish you were or might become, but just the way it is.
So, I have been allowing myself to be as I am and allowing others to be themselves. I was struck by a phrase of seeing like this, with love, was ‘seeing through the veils.’
A few days later I sat down next to someone on a train platform. A change of platforms had been announced previously and there was some confusion about what was going on and I got up after a while to check for the latest information.
As returned to my seat, I noticed the person next to me give me what we call in the UK a ‘dirty look’. I felt my ego stir to frown back, be a little defensive, or even vulnerable that I was being judged, and just watched it and breathed. I breathed and wondered if they were simply projecting some hurt inside them, so I let them be them, smiled and let the light of the smile hang between us instead and sat down.
Another platform change happened, and I saw them again at my side and as I smiled again, and they started to tell me about the discomfort they felt travelling again post-Covid. We exchanged some thoughts on those days, and our experiences of the slowing doing lessons of Covid.
We were open hearted in a way that you might be with a close friend or can sometimes so easily be with a stranger, who has no expectations or judgments. As the train arrived and we headed for our carriages, we rounded off our chat with a laugh and a goodbye.
It was a lesson in the grace of compassion and not falling into judgment, fear or hurt, and how on the other side, there is connection.
Through the veils is the ground on which we build solidarity, community, sharing.