In the past unity meant your church, your community, your neighborhood, your family but never reaching beyond those uniting qualities and seeking information, guidance or knowledge from outside sources or new perspectives. In fact unity by its very nature in those circumstances discouraged any view that was not already shared by the collective group. Unity was defined as harmony and agreement but unity is more than just that. Unity is about the connectedness that exists when the whole is greater than the sum of its parts.

Unity in communities meant building common interest and goals but in communities we must encourage the difference in us, the strengths in having those differences and the unique power that comes when those differences are celebrated not exploited.

Unity in religion is agreement and harmony but in religion we much recognize that harmony sometimes means existing peacefully with the enemy as animals demonstrate in nature. The hunter does not chase the hunted from its land and it takes only what it needs to survive.

Unity in our neighborhoods meant safety and awareness. People look out for one another and made sure everyone is protected. But we judge and compare ourselves and others and utterly fail to know one another in a world where neighborhoods are quickly becoming the streets we return home to at night but know almost no one.

Unity in your family meant agreement about what was expected and how it would be handled when expectations were not met. Today unity requires the ability to be individuals and except one another as different, unique and wonderful in our own way. Unconditional love begins in the family and it is through families, communities, neighborhoods and personal beliefs and values that we discover the true meaning of being united to one another.

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