For the past 8 years I have been on a journey to develop a new character within myself, a complete 180. As an undergraduate at ASU, I became an intern with Arizona Interfaith Movement. This opened the door to aiding in the development of an non-profit educational program called AGREE.
AGREE stands for Arizona Golden Rule Educational Experiences. I had, up to that point, had no true connection with the Golden Rule and had no former awareness of AGREE. When I first met Sue Lynn Stiner, I had no idea how my life would change, for the better. She outlined the program up to that point and invited my input. So the story goes, I said “I can write a song for that,” in reference to the AGREE collection of fables.
This led to the following developments and successes:
- The writing, composing, and recording of 12 original songs, teaching the Golden Rule through cultural lenses, entitles “Stars Shine Brightly” (Itunes/Youtube).
- Traveling to the UN as a representative of AGREE, connecting the message of the Golden Rule with current leaders and organ supervisors.
- Receiving and acting in the current job title AGREE Program Developer, as we aim to further this program in schools all over the state of Arizona.
So how did the Golden Rule change me? In increments. In small, droplets of life giving messages as I developed the arts experiences and taught in classrooms. The Golden Rule is a simple statement that takes you for a loop when you really dive into it.
For example, think about the following Golden Rule teachings from AGREE experiences:
- Do you like it when others take the time to listen to you? Then create that same time for others to express too.
- Do you appreciate having time and space to develop your own ideas, judgement-free? Then begin to help others experience that same feeling, helping them develop their ideas.
- Do you want close friendships and meaningful connection? Find ways to create meaningful connections with others and explore how you can be a true friend.
It’s not about the way others choose to be, its about how you choose to be. Take responsibility for your own actions and from that stand point create the good you want to see all around you.
So, why do I write? Well, it occurred to me that there are good things happening all around me, everyday that I I’d like to pay attention to. Its easy to focus on the negative but powerful to search for the positive. So in the process of creating my own Golden Lens, I decided to keep a journal, a blog, that records those Golden moments I witness and honor the people who helped create them.
In conclusion, I hope to open more room for the positive, good things that are happening everyday and continue to develop this new Golden character within myself. I’M LEARNING EVERYDAY. GROWING EVERYDAY. SEEING MORE CLEARLY, EVERYDAY. PRACTICING THE GOLDEN RULE EVERYDAY.