August 13, 2013
Not judging traditions
This morning at the Tuesday street breakfast, I was cutting a First Nation's guy's hair. He asked me to save his hair so he could deal with it according to his people's traditions. And he thanked me for understanding.
And what I realized was that "traditions" are important to people. And it's not my place to judge other people's traditions (and rites and rituals... and systems, and programs, and such). Or even try to convince them that my preferred ways of doing things are somehow better than theirs. Sure, I can tell them about my ways, and listen to them as they tell me about theirs. And maybe we'll learn from each other, and both come away a little wiser (and understanding and compassionate, and open-minded and open-hearted).
Like "church traditions," for example. If a particular tradition is helping a person to seek after and grow in relationship with God ... even just one person ... then that "tradition" has value and is important, no matter what I might think about it.
Who am I to judge how God reaches out to people?
(And I suspect that plenty of people thing MY traditions - including things I maybe don't even realize are "traditions" - are strange or even useless ... including my journaling and blogging, I guess...)