Many years ago a great Krishna Bhakti teacher, Bhakti Tirtha Swami, penned the following 4 principles of community building:
1. Treat everyone you encounter as if the success or failure of your spiritual life depends on the quality of your interactions with them.
2. Think of the person you love the most and aspire to treat everyone with that same quality of love.
3. View all conflicts as your own fault first.
4. Realize that people in your present environment might very well be the people with whom you will live out your life and who are likely to be with you at the time of death.
How interesting that community building starts with our own internal work. How we show up, how we set our minds, how we hold radical responsibility, and how we value those around us. A good exercise is to read these principles daily and let them soak in our consciousness. Reflect on how they influence our interactions with others. There is an intentionality about all of them and they can deepen our spiritual growth, and the vibrancy of our life, if we make room for them.[ community ] [ congregation ]