Founded in the United States of America, Universal Brotherhood Movement is an international organization that has beloved members all over the world. And everywhere, there are celebrations of each nation’s birth or other important events.
In the United States, the country of UB’s founding, we celebrate the birth of our nation on July 4. We invite all to celebrate with us!
239 years ago in Philadelphia, PA a group of proud and feisty men, representing the 13 colonies of “The New America,” claimed their independence from England. In terms of universal time, 239 years is a small number; but in terms of our lives and the good fortune American citizens associate with our belonging here, it’s a magnificent number!
On Saturday July 4, 2015, in the middle of family parties, picnics, barbecues and the requisite fireworks that follow – STOP – and reflect on the great good fortune you are actually celebrating. Pause to remember (this means taking your hats and caps off, gentlemen, and actually standing at attention) as you reflect on the sacrifices made by all those countless men and women who have fought for the freedoms we so liberally enjoy every day of the year.
In terms of lives lost and lives forever changed, 239 becomes an infinitely larger number, imbued with courage and faith, pride and deep trust. One of my most important spiritual teachers, Thomas R. Sandell, during a lecture in 1983 told a crowded conference room that “No one in this room has anything to complain about. We were all born in the United States of America and we are all American citizens, and that, my friends is incredibly good karma. Work with it! Make something of yourself and stop complaining.” I remember that day as if it were yesterday, and still get chills of affirmation at his words.
If you are an American citizen, whether born in this wonderful country or as a naturalized citizen, claim your pride in being an American and enjoy your weekend festivities to the fullest. As you watch those fireworks at the end of the day, recall the words to America the Beautiful:
“O beautiful for spacious skies,
For amber waves of grain,
For purple mountains majesties
Above the fruited plain!
America! America! God shed his grace on thee,
And crown thy good with brotherhood
From sea to shining sea!”
If reading brings you inspiration, may I suggest 1776 written by the brilliant biographer David McCullough in 2013.
As always, thank you for your service to UB, thank you for being a part of the love/healing and growth of the most wonderful country on earth, the United States of America.
Blessings to you and to all those you hold dear,
Universal Brotherhood Movement, Inc.