When one has grown up very close to the flame and what causes it, it's very hard not to get burnt; from time to time.
I remember the flames of the fires in Raleigh, North Carolina after the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. I realize now over fifty years later, that was the turning point in my life for the journey I would travel and the near consuming moments in time at the nearness to the fire. I was eight years old at the witness of the injustice in Raleigh at the time and I wondered what was going on but there were injustices of another kind going on in our house. The dysfunctions of our society as a whole was what I was feeling and there was nothing I could do about it but just survive and grow up;quick.
I began to realize that as I became an adult there were a lot of decisions that I would have to make that would define who I was and what I really believed. I couldn't depend on Society to define that because the color of my skin in the time I was growing up said something different was expected than what I was willing to abide by. I realize now that I made the right choices concerning where I stood on the issues of racism, sexism, classism, and every other label that seperates us from one another by definition. It is by the definitions of someone else's value system established by one group or another that keeps us in turmoil and indicisive as to our own opinions.
In deciding one's own opinion one must step outside of an established set of rules and do their own research through their own experiences to recognize their own truth. To try to apply that experience to every situation or group of people is as wrong as the sterotypical information we already have. I am proud to see that with each new generation they are becoming less likely to just be part of the status quo.
It is because of the brave souls that step outside of the status quo that pave the way for those that follow. Every time one chooses to do ,say or think a little differently, it is a step forward in evolving and elevating our awareness toward the Unity of Humanity in Oneness. There are still a lot of things in our Society that give individuals a step up because of the color of their skin or their gender but it is up to each one to do whatever they can for the next generation with what they are given.
When any one of us gets close to the fire we have to ask ourselves if it will consume us or will we use it's flame to see what we need to see within the dark spaces to forge ahead with the torch for those that follow.
Fire can warm and enlighten or consume and destroy. It is the intention of the holder of the flame that makes the difference. The question is; when you are passed the torch...what will your intention be and how will you use it's power?