Over the last few weeks, I had an unusual experience that led me to once again think deeply about the relationships humans share with one another.
In late 1981, my father’s first wife became pregnant. For a few reasons, the baby was given up for adoption. This month, from the 7th to the 17th, I traveled to Pennsylvania. During that week, at random, I was contacted by the boy my father and his first wife gave away. There were now 7 of us. Whether the child was my father’s or not, there were 7 adult children connected in a strange cosmic way because of the women my father had relationships with.
A friend of mine pointed out, “You know, in the Bible, the number 7 means completion.”
That seemed fitting. It made sense that, one day, this boy would come looking for his past. In a sense, something metaphysical had reached a crescendo. I went to meet him and felt an immediate connection to Jason, the man I now call my brother. I have two older brothers, Mark and Dennis, and they share the same mother as Jason. Because of the connection I felt to him, and the fact that we knew my brothers were his brothers, I immediately chose to call him family.
Because there were uncertainties surrounding the situation, we took a DNA test which said that there wasn’t enough evidence to support a biological relationship. The likelihood is that we do not share the same father, and we were both very disappointed about it. This is what got me thinking so deeply about the societal constructs of families.
It hurts me that people– as a whole –are not more accepting of one another. If only we, as human beings, could learn to look upon our fellow humans as family. I want to spread a message of love, but sometimes I don’t know how to begin. Theosophists speak of a moment of clarity in which you suddenly see the truth. You suddenly have the answer. An epiphany comes to you.
“Ah!” you say to yourself.
But, as quickly as you’ve grasped it, the realization is gone. It’s almost as if we have difficulty putting that love and purity of spirit into practice. It’s almost as if these bodies we inhabit prevent us from doing so.
We aspire to become more like the divine energy of God. Yet, we fall short. Why? I truly feel that if we practice hard enough, meditate frequently, and try to raise our consciousness up– up and up –we can learn to love divinely without involving our egos.
We need to love all humans as family.
If my brother Jason had been raised by my father, I would have called him my brother, regardless– whether we shared blood or not.
What defines family? It’s a question a lot of us ask, but I feel like I’m asking it for a different reason– because I tried to grasp one of those epiphanies and nearly missed it. Family is more than blood. It’s about connection, shared experience, and the cosmic energy that binds us.
I’m grateful to know you, dear brother. Here’s to a long life and many shared memories.