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I was asked to write something on Integrity

The word integrity is often bandied about with little regard for the severity of its intent. To be a person is usually considered as doing the right thing even when there is no witness to one’s actions. For me, integrity goes much deeper than one’s doing. In fact, it goes right to the core of our Being. To BE with integrity means to be whole, and integrated, and that there is integrity in the way that one is constituted. In this sense it is more than just a value, it implies cohesion, being connected on emotional (psychological), spiritual, intellectual and physical levels.

To live a life of integrity is not just about doing the right thing when nobody’s watching, it is about Being in a way with one’s Self, with Nature, with the

Divine/Soul/GodMind or whatever it is that is at the core of our Being and connects us to everything else on this planet. Integrity is to honour first and foremost one’s own Being, that which is part of the Greater Good. (I feel that I should write all these words in capital letters, as they refer to something above, beyond and inside us that we cannot know. It is indeed that great Mystery.)

To live a life of integrity is to be fuelled by the desire to be part of the Whole, to be inspired to make the world a better place, regardless of how big or how small our sphere of influence is. It implies and calls upon us to be true to our Selves, to be kind to others, and to be mindful of the impact that we have on each other and on nature. It demands us to be constantly in tune with the In nite. This is a tall order, and very few of us get it right all the time. But it is so important that we start with the way that we treat our Selves, in the simplest of ways. To live with integrity is to be first and foremost kind to one’s Self. Respect yourself in everything that you do – from the way that you make yourself a cup of tea to being mindful of what you eat and how you treat your body. I think it is only then perhaps possible to exude integrity. Integrity is not a learned behaviour, but rather a state of Mind or a way of Being in and with oneself that comes with growth. It is a long and arduous journey.

En route, we connect with others. It is integrity that determines the nature of our Connection. Integrity however cannot be exercised if it is not integrated deep into our way of Being-in-the-world. Then, and only then, will we see the sacredness of the human Spirit in every person, plant and animal. Let’s go there, together.

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