Honoring Our Family’s Beliefs

Got the feeling I needed to call my mom yesterday. My little brother Kevin answered the phone. “How are you guys doing?” I asked. “We’re watching the end of the world, he replied.” At first I thought they were watching a movie until I heard the excited voice of the weather man on TV in the background. Mom and Kevin were right in the path of another possible tornado; the latest in a round of tornadoes hitting Oklahoma City, OK. Mom talked to me as another wall cloud slowly moved overhead bringing with it the ominous silence that precedes a touchdown. I felt so helpless as I listened to her–she was so scared! “It’s the end of the world, she said. These tornadoes are God’s way of telling us that our time is up!” Mom believed what her religion had taught; the End Times were upon us and the world as we know it will cease to exist.

I stayed on the line with her until the wall cloud passed and she was in the clear. Hanging up I felt really sad because I knew that there was no way my beloved mother would change her beliefs. And I know all too well the fear and pain of having my foundation fragmented or shattered when a cherished belief is destroyed.

Explaining that the “end times” don’t mean the end of the world; just the end of an age and the old systems would be met with a firm but loving reprimand for dallying in that “New Age” stuff. Telling Mom that we are simply living through the transition phase, the space between the end and a new beginning and that things are going to get better would have given her a good laugh; she firmly believes the end is here. Saying that the tornadoes aren’t an expression God’s wrath, rather they are the result of extreme solar flare activity, along with the collective expression of the chaotic energy in our mass consciousness would have caused her to get angry. I kept silent.

There are many who tell me that they have had to leave friends and family behind due to conflicting beliefs. It is my understanding that leaving people behind is not the goal, rather it is to leave behind our negative judgement of their beliefs and hold on to the love. Much more challenging, don’t you think?

Now, that doesn’t mean that we have to be in their lives; I have family that I rarely see anymore and may never see again, but that doesn’t mean that I don’t love them. I am honoring their choice to not be with me because they are of the opinion that beliefs are more important. So be it.

Here is what we have to keep in mind. When all is done and we are living in a *new reality with new and better systems, we will be able to enjoy the richness of the relationships that endured. They will be richer because we have shown that we can honor the beliefs of others even when we don’t necessarily agree.

If my mother lives through the next few years then the relationship we build now will be much stronger. She will know for a fact that for her and I, love is about our bond rather than our beliefs.