Sunday, January 23, 2011


Respect is indicative of understanding, either for another person, place or thing. Lack of understanding may cause actions of disrespect. We must distinguish respect from tolerance as tolerance is not a positive emotion. An example ~~  tolerating a religion is not respecting it. Toleration is more compatible with  Contempt. Again another negative connotation. 

I was brought up in a "non-denominational" environment with no commitment   to a certain dogma. When I was 16 years old I made my own choice for religious expression. I choice Greek Orthodoxy. There was a Greek Orthodox church in the city I grew up in ~~  San Bernardino California. It is called Saint Prophet  Elias. It intrigued me to the point that I felt a need to learn more about it. When I was baptized in a font as an "adult" my father made fun of this religion by parading around the house wrapped with a blanket as if he was wearing a robe like a priest would in Liturgy. He did this out of ignorance. He had no understanding of the symbolism of the church. 

On a positive note, after coming to my ordination at the famous Saint Sophia Greek Orthodox church in Los Angeles CA. he stopped making fun of the rituals and TOLERATED my belief system choice. He never understood it, even on the day he left this world.      

When it comes religious tolerance I am first to point out that tolerating one's belief system is not respecting it. I would rather that one attempts to understand it. No person or race wants to be tolerated, although that is a better option then attacking it.

When you respect a person and his belief  system, you understand it. You may not share in the same system but you respect the method with which that person finds his peace with his maker and those around him. You actually elevate your own awareness. I have always said on care2 and in all my writings, "To know myself and strive to be a better person". 

In this blog, one of my goals is to create a unity among so many cultures races and  creeds. Can it be done? Absolutely! When we all understand that we came from the same father, we breathe the same air we bleed the same color and we want the same thing! UNITY AND PEACE in the world.

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