"Is my skirt too short?" asked Sarah. "No, it's just fine.
It's the length all the girls are wearing them these days." "Am I dressed odd in any way?" asked
Sarah. "No, you look just fine." replied the owner. "Then why is everyone
looking at me?" asked Sarah
"Ahhh", said the owner. "Yes, we do that in Spain. People
look at other people. You'll get used to it." And Sarah found she did get used
to the looks and smiles of others as she went about her day. Sarah discovered she
quite enjoyed the sense of connection she shared with absolute strangers.
When Sarah returned home to Canada she was surprised at her
experience. She realized people don't look at one another as they walk down the
street or pass one another in the stores. "After my experience in Spain I began
to enjoy being seen. Now that I'm back home it feels as though I'm invisible.
It's as though people see right through me. It feels lonely not to be
acknowledged, if only with a nod or a smile or the confirmation through
someone's eyes." declared Sarah.
Maybe Sarah has identified something important for us to consider. Do we see
one each other as we pass in our day? Do we acknowledge their essence? Do we
see beyond the exterior garments and engage, however briefly, the divine
essence that blesses us with their presence?
Are we missing each other? Are we in
such a hurry to get to the next place that we miss what is in this place? Are
we so focused on completing the next task that we miss out on the beauty of
An Australian friend offers me the same insight. Whenever I
greet Simon with the standard expression - "Nice to see you." Simon's response is
always the same. "It's nice to be seen."
Sometimes I like to play a game with myself as I go about my day. As I
meet others during the course of a day's activities I silently ask myself the
question - "What gift does this person have for me today?" and "What gift do I
have for them today?" I like to play with the idea that each encounter, no
matter how simple or innocuous it may seem is a gift of significant importance.
Have we become so numbed by the busyness of life that we
loose the magic of each moment, the miracle of this divine being who engages me
and invites me to acknowledge my divinity as I acknowledge theirs?
For years I signed my correspondence with the word
'namaste'. Namaste is a Sanskrit word that can be translated into the message -
"The Divine in me recognizes the Divine in you." or "All that is best and highest in me
greets/salutes all that is best and highest in you."
I'm going to return to that greeting. I'm going to raise my
level of consciousness of the gift of the presence of another. I'm going to see
in them what they may have forgotten about themselves, and in this way serve to
remind all those I meet that they are more than their physical garment, more
than their ego identity, more than just this moment in time and space. They are
And maybe through this reminding we will remember who we all are
and what is really important.