Building Bridges

2767916696_ee4bb7fd20As I gaze through my daily photos of Florence or Venice each evening, I see that SO many of them are of bridges and connected waterways. I have been so drawn to them everywhere I go. And again, as I walked this morning from bridge to bridge and alongside them, there were moments when the intensity of their charm and importance was almost overwhelming…the inner beauty of the bridges and their meaning…bringing two sides or areas TOGETHER with such practical grace. So many people congregate near the bridges, too, drawn to what I think is such a natural inclination to feel connection and kinship…to stand where two sides come together, conscious of that attraction, or perhaps not…but definitely drawn there from something within.

2013-06-17 12.35.40I have so immersed myself in looking at the different types, styles, colors, construction, and sizes of these bridges… ALL fulfilling the same mission of bringing and linking together two sides…drawing them close. It sweetly hints yet again of the oneness that is at our very core.

As we studied Janessa Gans Wilder and the Euphrates Institute this past year at Scholars Together, I was so touched and inspired by her decision to find the bridges between us all, instead of seeing the boundaries and divisions…to dedicate her life’s work to educating and awakening us to the possibilities and truth that exists for all of us as we bridge together and move past stereotypes and misunderstandings that would try to separate and divide us.

bridge6I feel an internal cringe every time I hear comments that would mentally try to plunge people into opposite groups… that make divisions politically, religiously, culturally,  or even because of personal experiences. It seems so primal for me to look for and see the sameness in our desires, though they are expressed in such multifarious forms…to find the bridges that bring us together so that we can find strategies that work for us all, without alienating or criticizing… bridges that anchor each of us in Love, together…a love that brings us to open hearts and mindful compassion…that helps us all to really flourish.

For years I have loved the lyrics and the melody of a song made known to me by the Judds. It really says it all.

Love Can Build a Bridge2013-06-18 11.46.24

I’d gladly walk across the desert

With no shoes upon my feet

To share with you the last bite

Of bread I had to eat

I would swim out to save you

In your sea of broken dreams

When all your hopes are sinking

Let me show you what love means

Love can build a bridge

Between your heart and mine

Love can build a bridge

Don’t you think it’s time?

Don’t you think it’s time?

ponte-chiodo-veniceI would whisper love so loudly

Every heart could understand

That love and only love

Can join the tribes of man

I would give my heart’s desire

So that you might see

The first step is to realize

That it all begins with you and me

images-1Love can build a bridge

Between your heart and mine

Love can build a bridge

Don’t you think it’s time?

Don’t you think it’s time?

When we stand together

2013-06-21 08.46.48It’s our finest hour

We can do anything, anything

Keep believing’ in the power

Love can build a bridge

Between your heart and mine

Love can build a bridge

Don’t you think it’s time?

Don’t you think it’s time?IMG_1870

Love and only love

Love and only love

Tien Stone Langlois, STLC

2 thoughts on “Building Bridges

  1. Phil Turner

    As one with an engineering / mechanical inclination my mind thinks it is important to note that the key to the strength and longevity of a bridge is in its symmetry. Your camera’seye sees them as gracefully balanced and symmetrical. These “life bridges” can only find durability and balance when both anchor points are fully committed. Care and patience in “fitting the stones” in place will result in something that can withstand all elements.

  2. Jennie

    Tien, I absolutely loved reading this thoughtful interpretation of bridges and their connectivity to life, experiences, people and thought. Not to mention the photos you’ve taken are beautiful and being able to recognize most, I was able to go right back to each of those locations in my thought, and what wonderful memories of each.

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