“ Out beyond ideasof wrongdoing and rightdoing,there is a field.I’ll meet you there.”Imbolo Mbue, Behold the Dreamers
The quote above seems to capture exactly what Quakers, whether universalist or Christian or of whatever stripe are at core about--or what I dream they are about.
Jesus and George Fox preached in fields (and both would have talked about wrongdoing and rightdoing) but I also imagine in both of them acceptance and love, a genuine listening, an encounter--and isn't forgiveness, reconciliation and love of your enemies on some level about meeting in a field?
The quote moved me because it doesn't say their is no wrong or right doing--it acknowledges we all have our own ideas of what these are--but yet there is a place where we can meet each other deeply.
We don't have to talk about right or wrong. We can just meet.
I thought of Ken and Katharine's question about where love is calling us today. Maybe to a field where we'll meet a stranger.
I saw this on my friend Elaine Pigeon's blog (https://pigeonfiles.wordpress.com/2017/05/01/city-of-refuge/) and immediately felt an emotional response to it, though I knew nothing of Mbue or Behold the Dreamers.
A quick tour of Amazon yields the following about Mbue's 2016 novel:
A compulsively readable debut novel about marriage, immigration, class, race, and the trapdoors in the American Dream—the unforgettable story of a young Cameroonian couple making a new life in New York just as the Great Recession upends the economyThe quote also reminded me of quote, written as grafitti on a wall in Havana: "We believe in dreams." I have long hung onto that--and feel the need more than ever to do so in these times.
Winner of the PEN/Faulkner Award • A New York Times Notable Book • Longlisted for the PEN/Open Book Award • An ALA Notable Book