There is a saying in English and German intending to describe something not as it should be: To brush something the wrong way, to brush something against the fur. I have heard in English people say that something goes against the grain for them.
Fur grows in a certain direction, and when it is kept in best shape, that is all the hairs growing and kept in their proper direction it is soft as silk, and shiny, and all the little hairs grow side by side, next to each other, serving a higher purpose. Lord Shackleton shows you how it's done.
We all have our own fur --- our own individual way of progressing, of growing, of feeling safe and protected. Our own unique make-up, our individuality, mix of talents, strengths, interests. Our fur. When you pet a cat or a dog or brush a horse you know what I mean and it is easy to carry this idea over into the world of humans.
To be brushed according to our own individuality, in the direction of growth is what we have to grant others in order to have our own fur shine and shimmer.
Since nurturing this idea, I am even more alert to treating everyone with kindness and with this special slower paced gentleness that lets people grow in front of you. By taking the time to feel the Love that God has for everyone, you let others be bigger than you, having perhaps better ideas than you and you honor them without a taint of envy or regret. Cats start to purr when you honor who they are. Humans can purr, too. To brush others' furs in the direction of growth is the kindest thing to do.
I find these words from the Christian Science Hymnal describing the power of gentleness - that is the quality that always brushes others in the direction of growth - very moving:
O sweet and tender as the dawn, / With mighty power to heal and bless, / Is God's dear gift to all His own: / The happy grace of gentleness. /
How quickly burdens fall away, / How hearts grow light, rejoice, are glad, / When Love with touch of gentleness / Uplifts the sinning and the sad. /
This gentle grace of Love divine / Is sweet as breath of opening flower. / Self-love and harshness disappear / Beneath its tender, healing power. (Hymn. 545:1–3)
Who is writing?
In my work as Christian Science practitioner and writer I draw on listening to God and listening to people.
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