Soul Vitamins

Poem: Respect is a Word

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Respect is an essential word.
People need to respect themselves, others,
their possessions and the natural world.
Building a healthy respect for yourself
makes you feel good about who you are,
what you’re capable of doing,
and enhances your value as a human being.
Self-respect creates a set of personal guidelines
that help you to make solid decisions,
conduct yourself honorably,
and present yourself with poise and confidence.
Having respect for other people is also essential.
It enables you to keep an open mind
to alternate ideas and opinions.
It reminds you to interact with others
as you want them to interact with you.
It opens the door to acceptance and camaraderie,
and it fosters reciprocal respect.
By respecting one’s possessions,
people learn to appreciate their belongings.
Clothing and homes and vehicles
last longer and offer years of comfort and security
when they are properly taken care of.
Special acquisitions provide decades of enjoyment
when cared for in a respectful way,
adding to their value and reverence for future generations.
And finally, practicing respect for the natural world
is essential for the continuance of life on Earth.
Natural resources must be used conscientiously.
The purity of the air, the land and the waters must be sustained.
Living creatures should be allowed to live free
or cared for in sanctuaries or other appropriate settings.
The bounty of the land should be treasured and shared.
Respect is a universally beneficial word
to practice, to hold onto and to give away.
Respect is a word
meant to enrich the quality of life.


Perri E. Hogan

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