"If I had the influence with the good fairy who is supposed to preside over the christening of all children, I should ask that her gift to each child in the world be a sense of wonder so indestructible that it would last throughout life, an unfailing antidote against the boredom and disenchantment of later years, sterile preoccupations with things that are artificial, the alienation from the sources of our strength." Rachel Carson, "The Sense of Wonder"

I recently returned from a trip to the Grand Canyon and came across these magnificent words . . . .

"In certain regions of South Africa, when someone does something wrong, he is taken to the center of the village and surrounded by his tribe for two days while they speak of all the good he has done. They believe each person is good, yet sometimes we make mistakes, which is really a cry for help. They unite in this ritual to encourage the person to reconnect with his true nature. The belief is that the unity and affirmation have more power to change behavior than shame and punishment. This is known as Ubuntu - humanity towards others."

I was profoundly struck by such a deeply compassionate way for people to be asked to address their mistakes:

"There is no easy walk to freedom anywhere, and many of us will have to pass through the valley of the shadow of death again and again before we reach the mountaintop of our desires." Nelson Mandela

Timeless and timely words . . . .