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Article ID: 15976

VoxAcct: 420287

Section: words

Age Group: Adult

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An Open Mind and Heart

Author: Paula Hifner
Posted: July 13th. 2016
Times Viewed: 3,653

I wanted to write this down, and share an experience I had not long ago. For some reason, I’ve felt the need to reach out and share with others. Being that as it may, and using the skills at hand, I applied to the Universe for help with this endeavor. It didn’t really matter who it was or what brought it together. Having no parameters in mind, I just needed a shove in the right direction.

There are people who just don’t have the patience for unsolicited knocks on the front door. Having flashbacks to when I was a child and someone would dare to knock on our door, I can remember my parents (Father actually) growling his way to the front door. “We don’t…..We aren’t…You can’t”…-BAM!!-…end of conversation. Wow! That really made me feel like going door to door to sell candy bars for the school field trip would be a positive experience. Keeping this in mind, I would always volunteer to answer the door, trying to be there first. The way I truly felt was… hey, they didn’t show up at my door with rocks and pitchforks, so why should I throw hate and discontent at them. It takes nice to make nice. You can draw more bees with honey than vinegar. Every situation can be handled with decency and decorum.

Where I am living now is on a busier street. There is a much greater chance for the possibility of unsolicited walkups. At our house, we really don’t have an issue with people knocking to solicit. I have a comfy spot all set up with chairs and plants, along with many wind chimes, one of which has a large pentagram over it, right there on my front porch.

It happened one Spring day a few years ago. When I answered the doorbell, there were a couple of church people, literature in hand, wanting to know if I had a few spare minutes of time. I usually always do, doesn’t matter what religion or sect, but this was right in the middle of something. “We just wanted to take a second to share a word or two with you. Do you know about Jesus?” It took me a second to compose, and yes…for goodness sake, don’t they see the pentagram? Then I remembered. Something inside said, “be honest, be upfront, share.” So I got my cup of tea, and sat down on my front porch. “I would love to share my view of the Universe with you. Bare in mind, we probably will disagree on several points.”

As we sat there going over all of the old familiar historical details of the “story well told”, I was surprised that were actually agreeing on more than one or two items. There was a guy, he did wonder around and say good things, people did follow him, all the old towns and cities, the Roman officials of the day, etc. When we hit the salvation thing I stopped them, and said straight up that it wasn’t a belief I held too. I am a Pagan.

They were quite curious, but not put off at all. Being able to explain where I am coming from, basically what Paganism is, being gentle Nature based, how it fulfills me, and helps define my Life was most refreshing.

We shook hands and hugged that day, as they said their goodbyes. We agreed to try it again, at least until we could only agree to disagree. I am not sure quite how it happened, but we went on meeting every week, for a whole year and some, (year and a day?) sitting on my porch. They would show me certain aspects of what they believed, and I would tell them about my take on things. Neither side tried to dissuade the other.

They usually had questions about some of the different aspects and practices of Pagans. We discussed reincarnation, ethereal planes, meditation, healing, divination, the Universe, Creation, the lost books of the bible, the completeness (or incompleteness) of it, mistranslations, Jesus, Father/Mother, God/dess aspects, all kinds of good stuff.

Originally I told them that the porch would have to do, because the house might contain a few items they wouldn’t understand, or might offend them. I do healing altars for people, and “parts is parts”. Eventually it got hot enough, I invited them into my home and we sat at the dinning table and visited. They were perfectly relaxed, never gawked, or asked about any of the living room paraphernalia I had out.

There was one main young lady that came with an older woman, and from time to time her partner changed. She brought the Pastor of her church once, even brought her son, and another time her brother. Interesting fellow, her brother. He would walk around under the tree when we were discussing Spiritual stuff, sometimes balancing on the rocks in my garden. And absent-mindedly balanced a stick on a nail once. Very spiritual energy about him.

Then it happened. The day finally came. We looked at one another and admitted, this must be “that day”. We both agreed that we just disagree. Big hugs, and tears. I told them that if they needed some cold ice tea, they didn’t need a bible to stop at my house. And yes, they have been back for a brief visit, just to see if everyone is ok. What a wonderful bunch of people.

In retrospect, I actually did learn some things about myself, helped redefine some other things. I feel much stronger fundamentally. How different it is to categorize things... encompassing certain ways and beliefs about yourself, to turn around to speak all of those truths out loud. Explaining yourself to another person in such a way is truly an exercise in humility and sharing.

Am I sorry I did it? No. Would I recommend it for someone else? Heck yah! But, only if you are capable of agreeing to disagree.


Paula Hifner

Location: Visalia, California

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