Is it enough to just be me?
With the world seemingly in chaos all around us, it is natural to feel the need to do more. When tragedy happens sending thoughts and prayers can seem, somewhat pointless, like it's not enough. There's a need to do more.
When you hear someone disparaging others, it's natural to want to lash out. When you see a wrong you feel the need to make it right. Just being doesn't feel like enough.
Part of our human nature is to want to do something, we want save the world. I can honestly say I am worried and am constantly looking for ways I can be the change this world needs. We all feel there has to be more we can do.
This is why you see people's passion come out in places like Facebook or Twitter. This pent up frustration of not being able to do more is reflected in anger when driving (road rage), the rise in addictions, anxiety, over eating and illnesses.
We are all being seduced by the need to do more. And frustrated by not knowing what more we can do. We want to be more politically active, to donate more money, to yell and scream our opinion at whoever will listen.
With all of this in mind, I reflect on my mindful practice and teachings. I realize that this pull, this need, is depleting. It causes us to do things irrational, to say things we don't want to say, to do things we wouldn't normally do. We lose our focus and lose control of our balance and I just need to BREATH!
Is sitting in silence, closing my eyes and breathing enough? Meditating on myself seems so selfish in this time. How can I stop worrying, stressing, hurting and striving to do more? How can I just sit and be?
Then I remember. If I am not present, I am not useful. If I am not balanced, I am not healthy. If I don't have peace in my heart how can I be the agent for change for peace in this world?
I have to give myself permission to say it is enough just to be in the moment. I have to give myself permission to find MY balance in this moment.
With that permission I am able to clear my mind from the unrelenting doubt and fear that surrounds me. By saying, this is enough, I give myself the opportunity to realize what I have to offer.
I give myself permission to search my spirit, my mind and my heart in a peaceful way.
I give myself permission to say NO. To say no to the self defeating mind chatter that says I have to do more.
I give myself permission to admit that in this crazy out of control world I am just me. I am good enough being just me. I am flawed and messy, but I care about the people around me, I care for my fellow man and that is sometimes good enough. I don't have to frantically try to be the savior of the world.
I can then look to my self and see that I can offer a peaceful spirit, a motivating thought, an inspirational message. I can offer my true self, from my heart to the world.
I can accept that that there may be NO ONE in this world who reads my message. There may be not one soul who is inspired or driven to self reflection. There may be no one who cares.
In this moment, in my space, I give myself permission to say that's okay. Just be!!!
In these troubled times it can be so very frustrating to figure out what to do, how to make a difference, and who to believe. There is one simple answer, you have to bring peace to yourself. Live a peaceful existence, in your space. You can only control the world that is around you, you have no control of things miles away. Seek refuge from fear and doubt in your own space. Your space is likely much more safe than the world you are watching from miles away.
Once you are in your space look in to your heart and find the light within. There is a light there, it always has been and it always will be there. Think about your beating heart, it's been beating all these years. Day in and day out pumping that deep red light through your body. Think of your heart as the light. When we recognize this light it grows until we can no longer contain it. When we allow it to it can move out into the universe and share the peace and love you have always felt within. When we embrace the calm beating of love that flows from our heart we find compassion and realize that everyone else has this light within.
With compassion we can move forward. We stop adding to the troubles, we stop placing blame or looking for someone to be the scapegoat. In these times there is not one single cause for the world's troubles there are many, so pointing fingers, placing blame and demonizing others will never bring peace. Peace starts with us, in our space, in our time. So where do WE start?
We start with realizing we separate ourselves into categories, White, Black, Christian, Muslim, Jew, Gay, Them, Us. When we hear these words it evokes an image of separation, it makes them different from us. It alienates them, turns us all into groups. What is important to change is to discover that "they" are human beings first and foremost. They have the same heart that we do, they have the same light within. As human beings we are the same, but the labels we place on people keep us from seeing them as us. Thinking or labeling yourself one thing puts up a barrier to those who aren't that thing, this is where we start. Stop placing labels, stop placing blame.
The way to change is to release ourselves from these labels. We MUST find the compassion and understanding that is within our hearts to overcome violence, anger, hate, fear and despair. If you find this light within, you can be transformed. IT IS THERE!!!
The path is clear but it is not easy. Centuries of separation between us and them are not easy to let go of. We have to let go of the outer layers and discover the universal connection we have as human beings. Your religion, race, sexual orientation or financial standing makes you no more human than anyone else. It is quite illogical that we divide ourselves so deeply.
Imagine if you will, a time when labels mean nothing. Think about how liberating that would be. Labels are really based on ignorance. We aren't born to separate ourselves from each other, it is learned behavior. Ignorance is reflected in how we discriminate. We live in a beautiful world but we destroy it with hate, greed and violence. When we can look at another human and see they are our brother, no matter the label, we can be at one with our beautiful world. When we see each other as human we no longer need to judge, hide, steal, or hate. When we have compassion for each other there is no way we could ever find the courage to shoot each other.
When we see each other as human we will have a chance to live peacefully together.
Peace begins with me...peace begins with you. All you can control is your place in the world, if you live that place in peace perhaps it will spread like a wildfire and your peace will connect humanity.