Talked with a friend today about how Wayne Dyer said there was a heaviness that drapes the Anne Frank house like a musty blanket. How anyone could go there and not be touched was a mystery to him. Same with Nelson Mandela’s prison cell.

My friend said, “Hey, let me show you something.” He went to Senegal last year and visited a famous island where the slave trade was carried out. He shows me a photo montage of the the compound on the Internet.

“On this side of the stairs,” he says, pointing, “were little girls. Little boys were lined up here, he pointing to the other staircase. “Men and women were housed here in rooms under the stairs.” He points to an ornate, painted door on ground level, between the stairs. “This,” he says, “is the Door of No Return. On this side is the compound,” and he points to floor between the stairs, “your density is still being determined. But wheN you go through the door, you board a slave ship and that’s it.”

I have a hard time imagining this. I imagine my own children going through the door. One step and your lose you family, your place, your self, and likely, your life. Think of the thousands of human souls who went through that doorway. Even without that step, just knowing where you are, has to put you in despair. How could it not? How would this change your understanding of St. Paul declaring that he is a “slave of Christ.”

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