Tyrants, Fear Mongers and Bullies are showing up. They are currently occupying the White House. They are showing up with symbols of race hatred and ethnic intimidation throughout our nation. They exist in my community here under the guise of being crusaders and weeding out corruption making slanderous and false accusations, twisting language and deliberately pushing buttons to incite conflict.
This destructive energy is about deliberately creating chaos. It is important to understand the nature of it so as to not get caught up in it, become part of it and be able to find the tools to effectively do the work of being and embodying peace and love in the midst of it.
Make no mistake, the peacemakers are not about the status quo. But the energy of embodying and making peace is grounded, collaborative and centered around a collective vision that is about empowerment, not power over or merely transferring power from one person or group to the next.
So what are our tools? How do we show up in the face of this destructive energy? Make no mistake. We need to show up. This is not the time for privileged platitudes about “the universe resolving all things” or other such nonsense. It is also not helpful to be shrill and self righteous. We can be doing the anti racist and anti oppression work but if we are not grounded and not coming at it from a place of compassion and love, we are actually contributing more to the chaos.
One thing I have learned in the 15 plus years of showing up doing the work of creating spaces where healing is possible in the most unlikely of spaces, at deathbeds, in jails, in rehabs, mental hospitals and shelters is that if I am not showing up from a place of love and reflecting that love, nothing else matters and I contribute nothing if I am offering tools without love. I have the education, training in knowing how to use the tools of music, breathing, movement, but they are merely mechanical if I am not offering them with love.
I can also tell you that in the settings I show up offering these practices, if I am not able to reflect that love, how in the world will people that are hurting be able to receive it in themselves, which is where healing, reconciliation, begins?
So, being able to be in the flow with Divine Order in Chaos, with stepping into this space is my practice. I often fail and get caught up in Chaos and have to breath, ground, and return. I will share this 3 fold practice with you, I have learned facets of this from many teachers and continue to learn in my own ongoing commitment to being a student here on EarthSchool. This is the yoga of life. This is my operating system along with the Way of Jesus, the Yamas and Niyamas, 14 Precepts of Engaged Buddhism and the Prayer of St Francis of Assisi.
First: Paying attention to being alive. Feel your feet on the earth. Breathe! Feel your heart beating. Know you have been given the privilege of your life. Of this day. Of this breath. As Mary Oliver says,”What will you do with your one wild and precious life?” Live into this question.
Second: Unpack the illusion of separation: You are made of stardust. You contain trace minerals from the earth in your bones. Your gut contains microbes that are found in the soil. Everything that has life is breathing in and breathing out as you are. You are part of a whole. You are fearfully and wonderfully made. You are valuable because you exist. You are a reflection and an image of the Divine. Align your thoughts, speech and actions with this awareness.
Third: Commit to the art of staying inspired. This is so important! I can so easily fall into despair! But thankfully there is no shortage of inspiration in the many people I look to that embody compassion and fearless, radical hospitality. There is music! Dancing! Snacking! Hugging! Inspiration and absurdity together are a recipe for sustainability and hope!
So, use this 3 fold practice. Please. Renew. Restore. Take breaks. But please show up! There will be snacks!