Open hearts

June 28, 2015

I listened to President Obama’s eulogy for Rev. Clementa Pinckney twice.  Towards the end President Obama talks about how important having an open heart is, and as sad as the occasion for the speech was, I was so thrilled that someone of such a public stature would talk about that, and talk about it at such a high-profile event.

It reminded me of my gladness and relief that someone of Pope Francis’ stature came out as an advocate for the Earth, in his recent encyclical, and of a similar reaction I had some years ago when I read some of the Dalai Lama’s books addressed to a more universal audience.

I don’t think change comes, ultimately, from the top down, but I do think that influencing what we talk about and sharing ways we might think about the issues can be helpful.

And in the case of talking about having an open heart, I think the posture of having an open heart is an important part of a process that people use to make their own individual progress.  So I see talking about it as a boost to the grassroots part of the dynamic for progress and positive change, and the grassroots level is the part of the human project I think often gets too little attention.

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