“A Hope for a New Label” is about a quotation I recently read about a label and how the quotation struck a really strong chord within my spirit.
Some people today are very interested in what designer labels they and others wear on their clothing, shoes, purses, sunglasses, etc. They often hope to have the money to buy something new for their wardrobe that has a designer label on it.
Product marketers, singers, and musicians may also hope for new labels. But none of those labels are what this article is about, or the type of new label for which I hope.
I do not know the source of the quotation, or if I am quoting the quotation exactly, but this is the quotation that struck a chord within me:
“Religion is like a bottle with a label on it.
Spirituality is what is inside.”
Even though I do not promote my spiritual beliefs by advertising or wearing the label of any particular religious group, I am a very spiritual person. I know that I do not require a bottle to contain, or a label to label my spiritual beliefs.
Some people may have the “religion” bottle and label without the spirituality filling. Some may even be empty on the inside, or they could be similar to the religious people Jesus admonished for presenting an exterior image that did not match their interior contents.
Usually, however, most people label themselves with some religious identity, even if it is the religious identity of their family, or an identity such as agnostic or atheist.
Therefore, I asked myself, how should I respond when someone asks me, “What’s your religion?”
I love to study the etymology of words, and I have learned the root meaning of the word religion. Religion is not Baptist, Buddhist, Methodist, Muslim, Christian, Jewish, or any other label that relates to a particular “religious” organization, dogma, or belief system.
The root meaning of the word “religion” is “to bind back to.” Religion was a way humanity used to bind them to God; not to a labeled bottle.
Worship has always been the means humanity has used to bind them to God, so religion and worship are sometimes used synonymously.
Worship is not just meditating, singing, dancing, praising, thanking God, or listening to someone deliver a message from Sacred Scripture. The etymology of the word worship reveals that its root meaning relates to a sacrifice of self.
At this point in my writing, the question, “What’s your religion?” has now evolved into the question, “What are you willing to sacrifice yourself for?”
In case you might be interested in my answer to that question, my answer is , “I love God, I love people, and I love God’s Creation.” I am willing to sacrifice myself–my time, my energy, my strength, my money, etc.– for God, beliefs, causes, and people I love.
My answer to that question does not mean, however, that I still do not hold to and practice certain spiritual beliefs, but my religion is LOVE.
In my page titled “Meet Me,” I say that I am a catalyst and a visionary for hope. I would love to act as a catalyst for the design of a new label for all religion bottles.
I would hope to see all the labels religious people wear removed and replaced with a new label, “LOVE.” After all, love is the substance at the core of world religions, which are still contained in many bottles with different labels.
If every religious person in the world wore the new “LOVE” label, and their interior contents matched their exterior labels, there would then be no need for the various religion bottles that separate and segregate the contents of the bottles. Without boundaries or labels, people would flow together in love, and in love they would unite.
Am I a dreamer? I hope I am not the only one. If you liked this article, you also may be interested in reading http://ahopefortoday.com/2011/11/19/hope-for-worship/.
YouTube video says it all: Love is the Question, Life is the journey, and Love is the Answer:
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