Several months ago, I had a dream in which I saw every religion represented by a building, such as you would think of temples and churches.

The buildings were set in a large circle, and their doors were wide open, facing each other.

The message was:

when the doors of religions are closed, those within say they shall worship only with their kind, but ultimately, we all serve the source of the Great Light.

This vision has stuck with me. I would love to make a drawing of it, but drawing is not one of my strengths.

I realize my vision is another piece of the journey I began nearly ten years ago as I began to explore the meaning of my life and the many spiritual questions I had and still have. I knew there was something more. I had no idea where this journey would take me, but the process has profoundly affected me, and I’m in awe each time I’m led to something that coincides with what I think at the time.

Such was the case when I came across the name Isaac Luria when I thought of my focus on peace in 2023. Rabbi Luria, also known as “Ari,” the Hebrew name for “the Lion,” was a Jewish, 16th Century mystic. He told of the myth of Creation.

When God first made the world, he poured divine light into clay vessels to make everything shine holily. But the vessels were fragile and shattered, trapping sparks of light beneath clay pieces. It’s why God made people, to find and free the holy light.

But others say God always meant to leave the world imperfect so we could work with him, as partners, to perfect it. 

Both statements are no doubt true. The Rabbi further explained that our collective task is to heal the world. In Hebrew, the term for this is tikkun olam.

This wisdom was shared in the 1500s, and yet, here we are today, still working toward peace.

This peace thing is hard.

There are some instances in which I struggle with the idea of peace and how to manifest and maintain it. And maybe, like you, there are days I want to give up.

The vision I had, is the ultimate conclusion to finding peace.

I’m constantly exploring, both through reading and conversations, the many ways that all religions are the same. This is not a column about religion. I’m not a theologist. I’m the girl next door who thinks about peace and tries to stay in peace because if we don’t have peace within, we will not have it without.

This year will show us more upheaval of systems that need to fail, and I believe those changes need to be made peacefully, not with violent protests.

Everyone can do something.

Keep up with community events and proposed changes. Sign petitions. Take food to your neighbor or food pantry. Listen to your intuition telling you what needs doing.

See the light within each other and help it to shine.