The True Wonder of Life?

It’s People, People, People

by CSW Director Rob Field

There’s a saying I love from the indigenous people of New Zealand. It goes like this:

If you ask what is the greatest thing, I will tell you:
It is people, people, people.

Taitokerau Whakatauki

In our fast-paced world of data, technology, and marketing, it’s easy to overlook the deep wisdom of this Maori saying. You can love all the places, things, and experiences the world has to offer, but in the end, people are the greatest — full stop.

In response, you might want to remind me that human beings can be ignorant, selfish, and murderously violent to other creatures and to our planet. This is true, of course, but we should also remember the creation stories from the world’s great religious traditions. They offer variations on the same basic idea: that all creatures, to one degree or another, reflect their Source (God, the divine, the Ground of Being, etc.). At the level of soul and spirit, we all are sparks of transcendent beauty, wisdom, and love — even when we don’t manifest these qualities to others.

I was reminded of this deep truth recently when we said Thank You to Cindy Decker (right) and celebrated her years of service to the Center as our Operations & Communications Manager since early 2020. Although Cindy will remain with CSW in a more limited volunteer capacity, I will miss her weekly presence at staff meetings, her dedication to the Center’s work, and her many gifts — gifts she used graciously and generously in support of our mission. So if you’re ever feeling cynical about the general state of humanity, let me tell you about some people I know. People like Cindy, who really are “the greatest thing.”

main photo by Church of the King via Unsplash