There’s an old joke which says if you get three lawyers together in a room, you’ll get four opinions. It has to be admitted that if you get three Quakers together in a room, you’ll probably get six opinions, plus one or two more just to ensure nobody not present is feeling left out. Far from being a crippling weakness, this is actually one of our strengths – that we are always on the lookout not only to ensure that people are not feeling excluded, but also to remember that we have much to learn from those we have not yet met. As one of our Important Writings advises us,
“Take time to learn about other people’s experiences of the Light. […] As you learn from others, can you in turn give freely from what you have gained? While respecting the experiences and opinions of others, do not be afraid to say what you have found and what you value.[…]”
(Advices and Queries, number 5).