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The Path to Enlightenment

Gary Behm

Gary Behm

The verse: “This little light of mine, I’m going to let it shine.

Hide it under a bushel, no, I’m going to let it shine, let shine all the time, let it shine”.

It is said that there are many paths to enlightenment. I have tried several.

Starting as a Lutheran minister, I observed the challenges of everyday life facing my parishioners, leading to a post graduate degree resulting in my serving as Director of Counseling in a family service agency for 23 years.

During that time I started restoring light fixtures as a hobby leading to an interest in illuminating engineering and the founding of a small lighting company.

A local journalist said that I had three paths of enlightenment; theological, psychological, and electrical, a kind of reverse pathway of personal transformation experienced by most folks.

Then came 2020 with COVID-19, social distancing, working from home, isolation, economic disruption, and anxiety about the future, political unrest, and the turmoil of an election year; a witches brew of change and chaos.

Hard times often birth good things; one of the positive unexpected consequences of instability and change. Isolation, for example, can become a gift of solitude and quiet, a time to think about what is and who are most important to us, an opportunity to ‘’shuffle the deck”.

In the last few months, I have had several calls from old friends and acquaintances who called just to visit a bit; they took time to connect in the midst of a big disconnect.

Public events are now online experiences. A local charity auction our family is involved in is holding the event online this year. The Auction Council wine and liquor baskets, always bring a premium.

This year I donated two special bottles. For the wine basket a nice red blend with a custom label called “Forgiveness” and for the liquor basket, a bottle of 180 proof clear grain alcohol I labeled “Moral Outrage”.

I suggested they sell these as a pair; the Forgiveness is pleasant to the palate and goes down easy; the more you drink the better you feel…some of us need more than just a sip to get the proper effect.

The Moral Outrage acts quickly and with a kick so a little goes a long way. It is not pleasant to taste and hard to swallow but nonetheless, some folks like it though they often complain about the after-effects.

Humor lightens burdens so I hope someone buys these and feels the better for it.

So, dear friends, colleagues, and fellow readers, the time has come to lighten up a little in whatever way you can find to do that.

We are all born/gifted with our own light. As for me, I’m going to let it shine, let it shine, let it shine.

I hope you do the same; the paths to enlightenment are easier to walk when you do.

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