I was recently strutting my stuff on the catwalk for Siobhan Carroll’s ACT meningitis charity along with the brilliant Ollie Canning one of Galway’s all time greats, and what a reception he got and it made me realize that we all have our own unique song to sing in life. Have you ever stopped to think what a brilliant, unique and remarkable person you are? Of all the people who ever lived, not one of them is just like you.
No one who ever lived had the abilities, limits, talents, appearance, happiness, sorrows, opportunities, burdens, and possibilities that you have. No one has exactly the same thoughts as you do. No one speaks exactly as you do. No one prays just as you do. No one loves all the same people that love you. Even the ones, who laugh like you, don’t sneeze like you. The ones, who cry like you, don’t have the same sorrow you do. The ones, who smile like you, don’t know the same joys that you do.
No one before and no one to come has your gifts. You weren’t meant to be like anyone else. You don’t need to change to show that you’re different. You were meant to be special. At no time in all history will the same things be going on in someone else’s mind, soul, and spirit, as with you this very moment. If you did not exist, there would be a gap in our lives, a change in our history, a hole in our creation, and something missing from God’s plan. Cherish your uniqueness. It is a gift given only to you.
No one can speak your words. No one can cry your tears. No one can impart your cheer and joy. No one can smile your smile. No one can bring your unique impact to another human heart. No one can take your place. The gift of uniqueness was given you to tell about and to enjoy. Let it inform and inspire you. Reach out to others with your life. Share of yourself along life’s pathway. You are God’s gift and unique to this world. As usual a story might help to explain what I mean about your uniqueness and it comes from a story I heard during my time living in Africa.
The Unique Child’s Song
When a woman in a certain African tribe knows she is pregnant, she goes out into the wilderness with a few friends and together they pray and meditate until they hear the song of the child. They recognize that every soul has its own vibration that expresses its unique flavor and purpose. When the women attune to the song, they sing it out loud. Then they return to the tribe and teach it to everyone else. When the child is born, the community gathers and sings the child’s song to him or her.
Later, when the child enters education, the village gathers and chants the child’s song. When the child passes through the initiation to adulthood, the people again come together and sing. At the time of marriage, the person hears his or her song. Finally, when the soul is about to pass from this world, the family and friends gather at the person’s bed, just as they did at their birth, and they sing the person to the next life.
In the African tribe there is one other occasion upon which the villagers sing to the child. If at any time during his or her life, the person commits a crime or aberrant social act, the individual is called to the center of the village and the people in the community form a circle around them. Then they sing their song to them. The tribe recognizes that the correction for antisocial behavior is not punishment; it is love and the remembrance of identity.
When you recognize your own song, you have no desire or need to do anything that would hurt another. A friend is someone who knows your song and sings it to you when you have forgotten it. Those who love you are not fooled by mistakes you have made or dark images you hold about yourself. They remember your beauty when you feel ugly; your wholeness when you are broken; your innocence when you feel guilty; and your purpose when you are confused.
You may not have grown up in an African tribe that sings your song to you at crucial life transitions, but life is always reminding you when you are in tune with yourself and when you are not. When you feel good, what you are doing matches your song, and when you feel awful, it doesn’t. In the end, we shall all recognize our song and sing it well. You may feel a little wobbly at the moment, but so have all the great singers. So remember, just keep singing and you’ll find your way home.
Thought for the week
As your thought for the week make a new start to your life this week and show that we can win the world by love, and not by hatred.