God, who is my neighbor?

The word is repeated over and over, throughout the commandments, in biblical texts.

But given the nature of human relationships, it seems we, those created in your image (also referred to as your children), are unsure or unwilling to agree on the definition.

Are there rules, specifications, or instructions regarding interactions and defining proximity to others? Any guidelines about who has the right to live next door or not?

Did you intend that neighbors and the neighborhoods in which we reside be defined by skin color, weight, language, or country of origin?

Are all the colors of your making, represented as you intended, or is equality seasonal? We are need of specifics.

Is it equal or privileged status? Arbitrary or something else? Race? Gender? Age? Income? Which determine$ who live$ thu$ determining who i$ a neighbor to whom?

Is neighbor status related to citizenship. If so, according to whose criteria? What is legal and illegal?.

Can one neighbor replace another? Who has the key to that door, the hou$ing $igns that announce who is welcome and who is not? Is one skin color favored over another?

Was it your intention to have color coded neighborhoods?

At the end of the day, does everyone look the same?

Who pushed who out? Who decided that the neighbors must match? What’s the commandment about which skin color, which class, which language, dominates?

God, were color coded neighborhoods part of your divine plan?

If so, do the same rules of color coding apply in heaven and hell?


Janet Cormier is a painter, writes prose and poetry, and performs comedy. JC prefers different and original over pretty. She loves collecting stuff, but cleaning not so much. Janet also talks to strangers. A lot. Her column appears weekly on Oddball Magazine.