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Are you being served?

I’m an unrepentant intellectual. I smile conspiratorially when I hear people critique Joseph Campbell for his claim that ‘underlining passages in books’ was his spiritual practice, and there are few things that inspire me like a well-phrased idea, polemics as play.

I felt the prickly parts of me bristle yesterday when Juliana Cesano told Govert Schuller and I that some of the issues we struggle with would disappear if we thought in terms of how we were being of service to others. And by ‘others’ she didn’t mean some phenomenological designation of radical alterity. She meant actual people. I’m quite facile with the idea of people, and could give a long treatise on how each individual is a realization of the divine that needs to be embraced in its fundamental, wondrous and utterly unique instantiation of ultimate Spirit. Actual people though? Well, I do like a few of them . . .

There could be a lot of debate on how to best be of service to others. And on another day that will be well worth exploring. For now though, I just want to raise the question: What changes when we think in terms of how we are being of service to others? Do you feel any conflict between what drives you and a call to service?


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